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Archives New Zealand misleads the public!


It is interesting to note on letters received from Archives New Zealand is written: “Kai pono ai te rua Mahara – Enabling trusted government information”, when the Chief Archivist, Mr Richard Foy’s letter below is based on false information. Lt. Governor Hobson never made or authorised an English version of the Treaty of Waitangi to be signed by the tangata Maori Chiefs. The only English copy signed was one that was attached to Lt. Governor Hobson “official Maori Tiriti o Waitangi” that was printed by the Church Mission Society (CMS) and was used without authorisation, when space ran out on the “official Maori text”. This English copy was compiled by Hobson’s Secretary, James Freeman from James Busby’s rejected draft notes and the reason why it differs so much from the Tiriti o Waitangi. See the letter below from the One New Zealand Foundation Inc. explaining why we cannot trust government information, especially from Chief Archivist Richard Foy. 




Website:  Email:


5 November 2019.


Mr Richard Foy,

Chief Archivist,

Archives New Zealand.


Dear Sir,


Thank you for your letter dated the 7 November 2019 below.


Richard, you may be able to fool half the people half the time, but you cannot fool all the people all the time!


Correct, there are two English versions of the Treaty of Waitangi available on Archives New Zealand’s website, but both were unauthorised by Lt. Governor Hobson.


You then say, “The first is a translation by Professor Hugh Kawharu, a former Waitangi Tribunal member”.


It seems you have completely overlooked or have no idea that this translation was made for the 1987 Court of Appeal hearing, (CA 54/87) where it is stated, “Instead of repeating the two texts scheduled to the 1975 Act, I set out what a distinguished scholar, Professor Kawharu calls his,Attempt at a reconstruction of the literal translation of the Maori Text. It was put before us on behalf of the applicants. The Crown likewise accepted this for the purpose of this case”.  An attempt! See page 663 of the 1987 Court of Appeal documents below.


This is not an English version, it was an unauthorised, “Attempt at a reconstruction of the literal translation of the Maori Text”, by a man for his people who were to gain most from the Courts decision. Kawharu even omitted the Preamble, which makes the Treaty impossible to understand or translate. Preamble = The introduction to a formal document that explains its purpose.


The 1987 Court of Appeal (CA 54/87) should have been ruled “Out of Order” as it failed to use the two texts scheduled to the 1975 Act. Note: No English version was made or authorised by Lt. Governor Hobson. FACT!


There was no English version of the Treaty of Waitangi made or authorised by Lt. Governor Hobson. His instructions to those gathering further signature after his untimely stroke was,  “The treaty which forms the base of all my proceedings was signed at Waitangi on the 6 February 1840, by 52 chiefs, 26 of whom were of the federation, and formed a majority of those who signed the Declaration of Independence. This instrument I consider to be de facto the treaty, and all signatures that are subsequently obtained are merely testimonials of adherence to the terms of that original document”. Lt. Governor Hobson.


There was no English version signed on the 6 February 1840 at Waitangi. Fact!


As for the English version used at Waikato – Manukau. The first five tangata Maori chiefs who signed the Treaty signed the CMS printed Tiriti o Waitangi authorised by Lt. Governor Hobson which would have been read and discussed as most tangata would not have understood the unauthorised English version made by Hobson Secretary, James Freeman. It is also stated the signatures gained at Waikato – Manukau were 44. This would be the 5 on the CMS printed copy and the 39 on the unauthorised English version that was used to hold the over-flow of signatures.


If this unauthorised English version is to be placed on Archives website, then it must be stated that only 39 tangata Maori chiefs out of more than 500 signed this version, therefore, it only relates to those who signed it or ruled as an unauthorised version signed in error.


Richard, I believe if you don’t know our true history then you should not be the Chief Archivist at Archives New Zealand, which I also believe continues to mislead the people of New Zealand, either because you don’t know our true history or maybe have a hidden agenda.


This is not “your” website, it is a website funded by the people of New Zealand who have the right to be told our true history, not Archive’s unfounded history!


Yours sincerely,


Ross Baker.


Researcher, One New Zealand Foundation Inc.





Page 663 of the 1987 Courts of Appeal documents showing the Court instead of using the 2 texts scheduled to the 1975 Treaty of Waitangi Act, accepted an, “Attempt at a reconstruction of the literal translation of the Maori text”. What right did this Court have “To  accept an ‘unauthorised” reconstruction of a literal translation of the Maori text” by a man who was going to gain most for his people with his translation when there is an ‘official’ translation by Mr T E Young of the Native Department for the Legislative Council in 1869, plus many others on record.












Another fraudulent translation of the Treaty of Waitangi, but this time for the 1987 Court of Appeal.

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