Associated People: MacLean, Sir Donald, Kilmoluaig (1820 - 1877)


Booklet `Sìl an Eòrna – Children of the Barley` 2006

Booklet about the circumstances and fates of people who left Tiree en masse, sailing to Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Patagonia and USA during the mid 1800s to early 1900s. Researched by Dr John Holliday for a summer exhibition at An Iodhlann.


Book “The MacLeans of Maraekakaho”

Green hardback dissertation about the family of Sir Donald MacLean who emigrated from Kilmoluaig to New Zealand in 1839, becoming a major landowner at Maraekakaho and government minister for Maori Affairs.


Book “The best man who ever served the crown? – A life of Donald MacLean”

Softback book “The best man who ever served the crown? – A life of Donald MacLean”. Biography of one of the key players in 19th century land dealings in New Zealand. Sir Donald MacLean was born on Tiree in 1820, moved to NZ in 1840, and became Sub-Protector of Aboriginies in 1844.


Maraekakaho station

Photograph of Maraekakaho station at Hawke’s Bay in New Zealand.


Courtesy of Mrs Ann MacPhee

Born in Kilmoluaig in 1820, Donald MacLean emigrated from Tiree aged eighteen. After a brief stay in Australia he moved to New Zealand where he became a fluent Maori speaker. The colony’s governor made him Protector of the Maoris around New Plymouth.

In 1844 he successfully defused a confrontation between Maoris and British settlers over disputed land. He travelled hundreds of miles on foot through scrub and along the coast by canoe, negotiating land sales and calming the simmering feuds between Maori tribes.

He bought 30,000 acres of rough land at Hawke’s Bay in 1855 where he established Maraekakaho station. In 1869 he became Minister of Native Affairs and also Minister of Defence. After his death in 1877, an old Maori chief wrote that MacLean had ‘spread the sleeping mat of peace for the tribes of the island.’

Black and white photograph of Mararekakaho station.

Mararekakaho station at Hawke`s Bay, New Zealand, established by Sir Donald MacLean.