14 Sep 2010

Appeal made for return of stolen taonga

6:40 am on 14 September 2010

A Northland leader is appealing for the person who took a taonga from Clendon House at Rawene last week to return it.

Pita Paraone from Ngati Hine says the carved whalebone whip handle, was probably the most prized possession of George Clendon - the son of a prominent early settler, James Clendon and Jane Takotowi Clendon, a cousin of the chiefs Patuone and Tamati Waka Nene.

He says George Clendon was a significant rangatira and the house built by his father where he lived until his death in 1933, was one of the most significant historic places in Northland.

Mr Paraone told Waatea News the value of the whip handle to Hokianga Maori far outweighed its (slight) monetary value and the person who took it, has not understood the historical value of the item for the Hokianga.