Herangi, Te Puea

Te Puea Princess resize

Princess Te Puea, Te Kirihaehae Te Puea Herangi - CBE

Princess Te Puea, a highly spirited granddaughter of the second Maori king, had barely four years' formal education but, after teenage exuberance, became drawn into Maori politics.

She led Tainui's opposition to conscription during World War I and campaigned after the war to improve her people's living conditions and re-establish Ngaruawahia as the centre of the King Movement. Under her guidance, Turangawaewae was established in 1921.

Despite Te Puea's opposition to the Sim Commission's 1927 offer of compensation for confiscated lands, she maintained good relations with politicians of the day. Her legacy is the national status for the King Movement and the rebirth of Maori crafts, not least waka-building.