Topic: McNaughton Street (TDN 10/02/2018)

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McNaughton Street 

This street in Waitara is named after Lieutenant Edmund C. McNaughton of the British Army's Royal Artillery, to remember his actions during the First Taranaki War (1860-61).

In February 1860, Octavius Carrington, Chief Surveyor, and Charles Wilson Hursthouse, Assistant Surveyor for Taranaki District, were chosen to accompany Robert Parris, Chief Commissioner of Native Affairs, to survey the Pekapeka Block at Waitara. The survey was interrupted by Maori removing their survey equipment.

In response, the British Army, based in New Plymouth, then occupied the Pekapeka Block and erected a blockhouse. Te Atiawa Iwi responded by building Te Kohia Pa on a ridge overlooking the British position.

Te Kohia Pa, also known as the "L" Pa because of its shape, is located on Devon Road between Waitara Road and Big Jim's Hill in Brixton. The pa was known for its innovative covered trenches, a feature first used at Ruapekapeka in the Northern War of the 1840s, then refined at Te Kohia.

On 17 March 1860, Colonel Charles Gold ordered an attack upon the pa, marking the start of the First Taranaki War. McNaughton was said to have fired the first shot in this battle and precisely one year later, on 17 March 1861, he was killed at the head of a sap (trench) in the final attack on Te Arei Pa, he was just 23 years of age.

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