It is difficult to get a balance of the historical events in
early times of New Zealand
as there is no documentary evidence. The
Moriori people were known to inhabit the coastal areas north of
the Bay of Plenty,
none had settled on the South Island.
Under the command of the Maori explorer Kupe
around AD 950 a well provisioned group made landfall on the northeast
the North Island.
the next years many more Maoris arrived
bringing fighting warriors. The warriors
beat the Moriori and advanced southward.
The Moriori who survived fled to the South Island
and then were eventually pushed down into Southland and the Chatham
Islands. The Maori settled
all parts of New Zealand
during the next few hundred years.
led by Abel Tasman, “found” New Zealand
in 1642. Tasman’s men and the Maori warriors clashed and
his journal and charts of the southern islands made a note to warn all
to regard the natives of this land as “hostile”. In 1769, the
first expedition led by Captain
James Cook, arrived and he found he could trade for supplies in a
manner. Later the same year, a French
explorer, Jean de Surville sailed from Calcutta,
India and he too
found the people to be friendly, but later on had a conflict with the
natives. Over the coming years several
incidents occurred. Finally in 1840 the
Reverend Williams and James Busby, the first British resident in New
Zealand, aided in the purchase of land
behalf of the New Zealand Company and the creation of the Treaty of
Waitangi between the British
Crown and the Maori Chiefs of New Zealand.
The Treaty is still
very important in New Zealand.
In Great Britain as early as 1815, over a quarter of a
million soldiers were demobilized and came back home into a glutted
market of agricultural laborers. Most of
the unskilled found themselves out of work.
In an effort to relieve the situation and the signs of unrest, the
government introduced a scheme to send some of the poorer groups of
British and finally Scottish people to Canada,
North America and also New
Wales in Australia.
was set aside under the “Poor Law Act”
to give the immigrants an assisted passage.
The New Zealand Association was established in 1837 when emigration was
seen as the only answer to poverty, unemployment and
homelessness. This association was dissolved and the New
Zealand Company was founded for the purpose of a systematic
colonization of New Zealand.
1839, 2000 white settlers were living in New
By 1858 these colonization efforts had failed and the Company was
Although first discovered in 1642 by the Dutch East India Company, the
began to lose their supremacy at Sea and New
Zealand was subsequently claimed by Britain
in 1840 becoming a British Colony. In 1907
it became a self-governing (Independent) Dominion and is now an
independent member of the British Commonwealth.
Marriage records for New Zealand
show that Ann Adamson, David Adamson
and Jessie Adamson were married in 1840.
During this period, new settlements sprang up on both islands.
Many ships landed with immigrant
Over these years, several
Adamsons immigrated, some with their families.
Passenger ship records show that on December 16, 1865 Thomas and
Margaret Adamson with four children sailed from London
on the ship Victory, bound for New
The Victory arrived
in Lyttleton on March 24, 1866.
In the year 2004, there were 335 listings of Adamsons in the New
Zealand White Pages.
Of these there were 57 in Auckland,
in Christchurch, 34 in Wellington,
in Dunedin, 17 in
Tauranga, 18 in Hamilton
and 8 in Queenstown. This indicates that the Adamsons can be
found spread out all over New Zealand.
It will be our task to identify the immigrants and their descendants.
Jerry F. Adamson