Hawke's Bay Province

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Hawke's Bay
Hawke's Bay in New Zealand (1873).svg
Hawke's Bay Province within New Zealand
Coordinates: 39°29′S176°55′E / 39.483°S 176.917°E / -39.483; 176.917
Country New Zealand
Island North Island
Named for Edward Hawke, 1st Baron Hawke

The Hawke's Bay Province was a province of New Zealand. The province separated from the Wellington Province following a meeting in Napier in February 1858, and existed until the abolition of provincial government in 1876. At the time of its establishment in 1858, the European population of the provincial district was only 1,185.



One of the earliest European settlers in the area was William Colenso, and had his mission station at Port Ahuriri, the port of Napier. [1] At a meeting in Napier in February 1858, the decision was made to split Hawke's Bay from the Wellington Province, which took effect in November of that year. [1]

The province had its own elected Superintendent and provincial council. The provincial council sat at Napier.

An 1863 meeting between settlers and Maori at Pa Whakairo, near Waiohiki 1863 Meeting of Settlers and Maoris at Hawke's Bay, New Zealand.jpg
An 1863 meeting between settlers and Māori at Pā Whakairo, near Waiohiki

In 1863, the province was described in The Illustrated London News as "one of the principal grazing districts in the colony; it possesses abundance of fine agricultural land, and has a climate proverbially mild and healthy." The article goes on to estimate the population at 3,600 Maori and 2,600 settlers. [2]

The system of provincial government was abolished in 1876.


The Crown initially bought two blocks of land: 279,000 acres (113,000 ha) at Waipukurau, and 265,000 acres (107,000 ha) at Ahuriri. By 1856, 30 sheep stations existed in Hawke's Bay, located mainly on those two blocks of land. Donald McLean organised further land purchases. [1]

The capital of the province was Napier.

Anniversary day

New Zealand law provides an anniversary day for each province. Hawke's Bay Province was founded on 1 November 1858. [3]


The Hawke's Bay Province had four Superintendents: [4]

123 April 1859Mar 1861 Thomas Henry Fitzgerald
28 April 18615 December 1862 John Chilton Lambton Carter [5]
326 February 186323 September 1869 Donald McLean
424 September 18691 January 1877 John Davies Ormond


There is no surviving legislation from the Hawke's Bay Provincial Council.

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  1. 1 2 3 McLintock, A. H., ed. (22 April 2009) [First published in 1966]. "Province and Provincial Districts". Hawke's Bay Province and Provincial District. Ministry for Culture and Heritage / Te Manatū Taonga . Retrieved 11 December 2013.
  2. "MEETING OF SETTLERS AND MAORIS AT HAWKE'S BAY, NEW ZEALAND". The Illustrated London News . 31 October 1863. p. 446. Retrieved 28 November 2021 via Archive.org.
  3. "Regions of New Zealand". Statoids. Retrieved 11 December 2013.
  4. "Provinces 1848–77". Rulers.org. Retrieved 16 September 2010.
  5. "Captain John Chilton Lambton Carter". The Cyclopedia of New Zealand [Taranaki, Hawke's Bay & Wellington Provincial Districts]. Christchurch: Cyclopedia Company Limited. 1908. Retrieved 21 May 2010.