Ko Matiti te Maunga
Ko Maraetaha te Awa
Ko Horouta te waka
Ko Ngai Tāmanuhiri te Iwi
Ko Te Muriwai te marae
Te Muriwai mai Tāwhiti was named by the crew of the Horouta waka, in remembrance of the Muriwai that was left behind in their beloved homeland of Hawaikii.
The settlement that was established many generations ago, continues on in the village to this day.
The wharenui or meeting house as we know it today, is called Te Poho O Tāmanuhiri. It was moved from Rō Pā (The Pā) to it’s present site in 1916. Rising waters, the threat of typhoid and the movements of the Waipaoa River forced the people to move further inland.
Rō Pā was originally situated on the edge of Te Wherowhero lagoon, at a settlement known as Piiti Tāone (Beach Town). Photographs in the Tairāwhiti Museum document the meeting house at Piiti Tāone in 1896.
The World War I Memorial Hall was built after Waiari. The dining room, known as Maungarongo, was erected in 1946 and features carvings by Pineamine Taiapa.
Te Poho O Tāmanuhiri is a painted whare. While it has carvings (whakairo) on the exterior, it has a painted interior. This method of adornment was popular in the late 1800s to the early 1900s. Some of the best examples of painted meeting houses are in the Turanga (Gisborne) district.
The free flowing graphic forms of kōwhaiwhai have inspired many artists from Ngai Tāmanuhiri. The spirited, bold style of painting in the wharenui are evident in many art forms created today by descendants of the marae.
The interior was recently restored by Dean Whiting from the Historical Places Trust. Our iwi conservator is Scott Riki. To see more about the restoration work from 2013, please read: Marae Restoration