Walter Williams Hipango

In 1876 he was a senior pupil attending the Native School at Parikino, Whanganui. He wrote a letter in Māori and English to Te Waka Māori O Niu Tirani 12.2 (1876): 15-16.


  • Te Waka Māori O Niu Tirani 12.2 (1876): 15-16.
  • This letter is the text of a school assignment in English composition in which Hipango describes the Christmas School Festival held at Parikino in 1875; this was attended by over 800 people. In an accompanying letter dated 11 Jan. 1876, Henry Nickless, Master of the Parikino School, states that he considered Hipango’s English composition assignment "so good that [he] made the lad recopy it as letter to [the editor of Te Waka Māori]". Nickless adds "I think, if inserted in the Waka, it will at least show that the Māori youth are capable of acquiring a knowledge of the English language. I gave him no assistance except in the punctuation. The translation is entirely his own." The editors of Te Waka Māori also write a commendation of this letter and state: "We have given insertion to the above letter with very great pleasure, and we venture to express a hope that the more advanced pupils of other Native schools also will follow the example of our intelligent young friend, Wiremu Hipango, and let their Pakeha friends of New Zealand see that they are benefiting by the opportunities of acquiring knowledge which are afforded them in the establishment by the Government of Schools throughout the country. Such a practice would create a spirit of emulation among the boys, and thereby materially assist the teachers in their endeavours to impart knowledge to their pupils. Let our young friends observe that here is a youth (Wi Hipango) who, by acquiring a good knowledge of the English language, has passed the wall which, it may be said, intervenes between the two races, preventing that interchange of thought and feeling which is so essential to the harmony and well-being of both. Having overcome the difficulties of the English language, he will now be able to avail himself of all the advantages which the Europeans enjoy, and a thousand avenues will be opened up to him by which he may attain to knowledge, wealth, and position. We congratulate him on the progress he has made, and we congratulate his teacher, Mr. Nickless, on the efficiency of his teaching" (Source: Te Waka Māori O Niu Tirani 12.2 (1876): 16-17).
  • "Ki a te Etita o te Waka Māori/To the Editor of the Waka Māori." Te Waka Māori O Niu Tirani 12.8 (1876): 93.
  • Hipango writes to support the sentiments of C.W. Hadfield in the previous issue of Te Waka concerning the "wide ocean between the Pakehas and Māoris". Hipango urges Māori youth to learn English and to do so by "attending school every day" This will then enable Māori "to talk and do business with Pakehas without the help of interpreters". The letter is dated 31 March, 1876.
  • "Ki a te Kai Tuhi o te Waka Māori/To the Editor of the Waka Māori." Te Waka Māori O Niu Tirani 12.10 (1876): 117.
  • In this letter dated 25 April, 1876, Hipango responds to allegations by school boys from Jerusalem who asserted in an earlier edition of Te Waka that Hipango’s account of their combined cricket match was inaccurate.