Witi Ihimaera

Birth Name: Witi Tame Ihimaera-Smiler

Place of Birth: Waituhi, Gisborne, New Zealand

Date of Birth: 7 February, 1944

*father – Māori, one eighth English
*mother – Māori, one eighth Irish, 1/16th Scottish

Witi Ihimaera is a New Zealand author, diplomat, and university lecturer. He is known for his work “The Whale Rider,” later made into the film. He worked as a diplomat at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, before becoming an English lecturer at the University of Auckland.

Witi is the son of Turi Teretimana (Julia) Keelan and Te Haa O Ruhia (Thomas) Smiler. He is of Te Aitanga-a-Māhaki. He was raised in Waituhi. Witi has two childern with his former wife Jane Cleghorn.

Witi’s paternal grandfather was Thomas Pera Punahamoa Ihimaera Smiler (the son of Ihimaera Te Teira Te Hanene and Hine Te Ariki/Taniwhai Pera). Thomas Pera was born in Omarumutu Marae, Opotiki, Bay Of Plenty, New Zealand. Witi’s great-grandfather Ihimaera was the son of Te Teira Ringa Rore/Rangarore Te Hanene and Turuhira Te Hanene. Hine was the daughter of Pera Punahamoa/Samuel Parahi/Pera and Taniwha/Te Rina Parewhai.

Witi’s paternal grandmother was Teria (Daisy) Moana Pere (the daughter of Te Moanaroa Pere Halbert and Riria Winiata Kaihote). Teria was born in Gisborne, New Zealand. Witi’s great-grandfather Te Moanaroa was the son of Wiremu Pere (Wi Pere) Halbert and Arapera Tautahi O Te Rangi Pototi. Wi Pere Halbert was a Māori MP, who represented Eastern Māori in the House of Representatives, from 1884 to 1905. Wi Pere’s father, Thomas Halbert, was a trader from Newcastle upon Tyne, England, and Wi Pere’s mother, Rīria Mauaranui, was of Te Aitanga-a-Māhaki. Witi’s great-grandmother Riria was the daughter of Winiata Te Hore Kaihote and Hannah/Hana Field, whose own father, Robert Field, was a whaler, and whose own mother, Pongaroa, was Māori, of Te Aitanga-a-Māhaki.

Witi’s maternal grandfather was Kereama Graham Haatarei Keelan (the son of Wiremu (Wi Koka) Keelan and Turuhira W. Mahemahe, of Ngāti Porou). Kereama was born in Waipiro Bay, Auckland, New Zealand. Witi’s great-grandfather Wiremu was the son of William (Tom) Thomas Keelan, who was from Cork, Ireland, and of Hana Ngahuia Tangaroa. Turuhira was the daughter of Rihara Tangaroa/Mahemahe and Erana Te Aokore Mahemahe.

Witi’s maternal grandmother was Hoana (Flowers) Putiputi Babbington (the daughter of Renata (Len) Tupara Babbington and Matepe Tautau). Hoana was born in Tokomaru Bay, Auckland, New Zealand. Len was the son of Hone (John) Hikurangi Babbington, whose father was a whaler from Scotland and whose mother was Māori; and of Mere Arahi Potae-Te Pana. Matepe was the daughter of Te Honiana Tautau and Manurahia Paku Maurirere.

Source: Genealogy of Witi Ihimaera – https://www.geni.com


interested in whakapapa (on hiatus)

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