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Pathways to Paradise Volume 1

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Sale price: $45.00 NZD

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Pathways to Paradise is a story of love, family and resilience. In two volumes, it highlights 700 years of Māori and English history in relation to the ancestry of Annie Māka and Bert Parkinson who married in Ōpōtiki, Aotearoa New Zealand in 1914.

Their ancestors had a global reach, and the socio-political times through which they moved in the Pacific, Aotearoa, USA, Australia, and New Zealand are fundamental to this story.

Extensively researched, the books are an amalgam of history, biography, and imagination. Each is around 340 pages and liberally illustrated with photographs, drawings, and maps.

After 700 years of family history, Volume 1 alights on the 19th century, with focus on Māori and English ancestors in the context of inter-tribal and colonial wars and land confiscations, including the Whakatōhea tribe of Ōpōtiki. It ends with two sons of John P. Parkinson chasing hither and yon rebels led by Te Kooti. This leads into volume 2, which traces growth of Ōpōtiki military township and its urban and rural businesses, including those of the cordial-maker John P. Parkinson and his seven sons. It closes with a chapter on Ōpōtiki since WWII, highlighting a Māori and Pākehā partnership aimed at resurrecting the fortunes of the dispossessed tribe through an aquacultural industry.

About the author:

After pursuing an academic career in geography and then environmental planning and governance, Neil Ericksen retired into researching family and social histories: first, his parents’ Norwegian and Danish ancestry, and then his late wife’s English and Māori ancestry. The latter became his ‘Pathways to Paradise’ project taking 8 years to complete.