Imagine what it was like for the first New Zealand settlers 700 years ago, after leaving their families on a Pacific Island to set out for the great unknown.
Archaeologist Dr Janet Davidson, of Ngakuta Bay, will be sharing the story of the first pioneers to settle at the Wairau Bar at Marlborough Museum, in Blenheim, on Sunday.
The archaeologist and historian has worked at Auckland Museum, Otago University and Te Papa, in Wellington, before retiring to the bay in Queen Charlotte Sound 10 years ago.
A small stone chisel, an artefact found at the Wairau Bar dating back to the early 14th century, is the catalyst for Dr Davidson's talk on Sunday.
She believes the chisel is a taonga brought by one of the early Polynesian migrants from Hawaiki, the small island of the Maori ancestors.
"There was no mail service, or internet connection to get advice from their family about what they should eat – they had to learn to use flax to weave and find the right stones to make tools."
The Wairau Bar is recognised as one of the most important archaeological sites in New Zealand.
Dr Davidson will speak Sunday at 2pm, Marlborough Museum. Seats are limited. Entry is by gold coin donation.
- The Marlborough Express