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Riverton Heritage Society

If you ever felt you should know something about Riverton, its origins, its people, it district, the Riverton Heritage Society has researchers available every afternoon (1.30-4 p.m or te.hikoi1@xtra.co.nz)

Riverton is known to have been established and in continual European occupation since at least early 1836.

Those first European residents were whalers and sealers. They did not bring women with them. Many were soon to take as wives, the daughters of local Maori, and a new mixed race developed in harmony with each other.

Englishman Captain John Howell married Kohi Kohi Paatu from Rarotoka (Centre Island). A little cottage was built for her near the local Maori village (kaik) but, after having given birth to a boy and a girl, she dies, and it was the Captainís second wife Caroline, whose father was a sealer, who would give birth to his next 17 children!

It is of this family, plus the families of his friends, compatriots, and the large influx of settlers which followed, from Scotland, Ireland, and places as diverse as Italy and Germany, which is the core of records, photographs and a multitude of archives, which the Riverton Heritage Society have here at Te Hikoi.