Topic: Prohibition

Topic type:

Liquor was prohibited in the King Country for more than 70 years although tales of 'sly groggers' who smuggled alcohol into the district abound.

Prohibition began in 1884 when Maniapoto Chief Wahanui Huatere presented a petition to Parliament to prohibit the sale of liquor in the King Country. It is alleged that a sacred pact between Maori and Pakeha had been entered into banning the sale of liquor in the district for all time, however this was not to be.

In 1892 Wahanui and Taonui, another chief party to the pact, successfully petitioned the Government to have one acre of land excluded from the proclamation to enable a hotel licence to be issued in Otorohanga. This proposal was vigorously opposed by Rewi Maniapoto, but despite his protest a brewer's licence was issued to Edmund Perry permitting him to sell ale in quantities of not less than two gallons.

The Liquor Referendum finally ended the district's 'dry spell' on 13th November 1954.

Discuss This Topic

There are 4 comments in this discussion.

Read and join this discussion

join this discussion