The central theme of 'Ngāti Ruanui: A History' is the unwavering determination of the Ngāti Ruanui tribe to hold onto their land and their autonomy
Sole, T. Ngāti Ruanui: A History. Wellington: Huia Publishers, 2005.
Tony Sole (Ngāti Ruanui, Ngā Ruāhine) began researching the Ngāti Ruanui history in preparation for the Waitangi Tribunal hearings in 1992, eventually leading to the publication of Ngāti Ruanui: A History in 2005.
The first half of the book concerns Ngāti Ruanui from their origins in Rangiātea up to the wars with the colonials. The second part of the history focuses on the land wars and their outcome, particularly te muru me te raupatu and its negative consequences for Ngāti Ruanui. The twentieth century is covered only lightly, finishing with the treaty settlement with the Crown and establishment of Te Rūnanga o Ngāti Ruanui.
The story of Ngāti Ruanui in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries is one of a drive for autonomy. Figures such as the rangatira Te Rei Te Hanataua lead resistance to outside incursions, whether by Maori or Pākehā. Ngāti Ruanui pick up the sword as fighters alongside Te Ua Haumene and Titokowaru in the Taranaki Wars. They also pick up the ploughshare as followers of the passive resistance teachings of Te Whiti and Tohu at Parihaka.
Ngāti Ruanui: A History is a publication of great significance to iwi members and other Taranaki Māori. Numerous whakapapa charts, waiata and whakataukī appear along with maps and photographs, adding depth to this work.
This publication is part of the series Te Takarangi: Celebrating Māori publications - a sample list of 150 non-fiction books produced by a partnership between Royal Society Te Apārangi and Ngā Pae o te Māramatanga.