Māori celebrate 200 year old connection to Parramatta

The Rua Rau Festival celebrated last weekend in Parramatta, Australia commemorated the common history that has linked Māori Sydney and the Parramatta region for over two hundred years.

51 elders from the North trekked across the ditch to Parramatta for the celebrations, which recognise an enduring relationship between their ancestor Ruatara and the Anglican minister Samuel L Marsden.

Early in the 19th century Marsden set up a school and farm to be used by his Māori visitors.

The site he chose was in the area surrounding what is now the the Rangihou Reserve, originally the territory of the Barramattagal clan of the Darug people.

As early as 1805, Māori were coming to Australia, such as Te Pahi, so regularly it was noted that “The Colony is never free from some of those Natives”.

Another chief Kawiti Tiitua was perplexed and dissapointed by the general lack of engagement and hospitality offered by Europeans in Parramatta.

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News category: New Zealand.

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