Tika Minarapa also known by his European name Richard Maynard, was born in about 1867 (birth certificate number unknown) we believe in the Gisborne – Poverty Bay area.
Her early years are not known but we could expect them to be much the same as his siblings and for Maori children generally of that time.
Richard’s education was at St. Stephen’s (Native) School, a Anglican boarding school in Auckland, the school was originally sited in Parnell (The modern school is now located in Bombay). It is worth noting that he went to school with the Warbrick brothers, where we can assume he was introduced to rugby.
The first record we have of Richard is as a member of the New Zealand Native Football team in 1888.
They were the first New Zealand representative rugby team to tour beyond Australia, they played their first game in Britain on 3 October 1888, and remains the longest tour in rugby’s history.
Organised by Thomas Eyton and Joe Warbrick, the team was predominantly Māori and included four of Warbrick’s brothers. It was the first team to wear the black jersey with the silver fern. The team cap was notable for the first use of the silver fern in New Zealand rugby. This symbol would come to be used on most New Zealand sporting uniforms.
The average age of the tourists was about 22 (Richard was 21). Nearly all were single and had poor job prospects. An expenses-paid trip to Britain must have appealed to them.
By the time the Natives dispersed at Auckland in August 1889, they had played a staggering 107 rugby matches in New Zealand, Australia and Great Britain, winning 78 of them – plus nine Australian Rules and two association football fixtures.
Richard played as a forward and was included in the playing team for 54 of the matches. In 2008 the entire team were made inductees to the World Rugby Hall of Fame.
A major book on the Natives tour by historian Greg Ryan, Forerunners of the All Blacks (Canterbury University Press, 1993), provides a detailed study of the tour, and anyone interested in further information on the topic should consult this book.
In 1890 Richard marries Isabella Russell (Marriage Certificate Number 1890/2138) aged about 23.
I am not sure if Richard or Isabella knew that they were related, sharing the same Grandfather (John James Stanaway), or it may be how they met in the first place. The relationship though is legal.
From information gathered it appears that Richard and Isabella may have married in Auckland, where they remained for a period of time while he played rugby for various teams including Auckland, before moving south to Poverty Bay, where he represented the district at rugby.
They had three children Charles Sydney (1891), Lionel Richard (1894) and Mary Lenore (Girlie) (1896).
By 1895 Richard is mentioned in the Poverty Bay Herald 14 June:
Patrick Mooney, alias Sheehan, was charged with stealing firewood, the property of Richard Maynard. Mr Day appeared for accused, who pleaded not guilty.
Maynard gave evidence that on the 15th of last month he had firewood on the Kaiti beach. It was a log about 30ft. long, and he cross-cut it, split it, and stacked it above high-water mark. The whole of it was taken away by some person, and he found out that it had been removed to Mooney’s place. He valued the wood at £3. After the information was laid accused came to him, gave him £1, and asked that the case be withdrawn. He admitted having taken the wood. Witness was ignorant of the law when he took the £1.
His Worship: This will now be a proper, time to ask if you will elect to be dealt with summarily, the value of the wood haying been sworn at £3.
Mr Day said the case must be taken summarily, the value in the information being placed at £I.
His Worship said then they would leave the value as set down at £1.
Cross-examined; Witness said he found the log in the surf. He saw the accused’s mother, who said she had already paid for the wood which his son had brought to their place. She said he had better take it to Court, and he said he would if she would not recompense him for it. He had had some trouble with another person about a portion of the wood which he had split, and bad received 10s compensation.
I, Johnston gave corroborative evidence.
Mr Day submitted that the prosecutor, having treated the case simply as one of trespass, there could be no criminal charge. He also contended that prosecutor had no property in the wood. Drift-wood was flotsam, and had no owner but the Crown.
The Magistrate asked for authorities to support the first contention, and gave Mr Day until 2 o’clock to look them up.
On the Court resuming in the afternoon, Mr Day desired the case to be tried by a jury. He said the value of the wood as stated in the information was £1, and the value sworn to by the informant was £3. If the value was over £2, the case had to be tried by a jury.
Sergeant Major Moore said that informant did not allege Mooney took all the wood. The value of the complete pile of wood was £3.
The Magistrate said the informant said accused told him he took one cart load, and this he valued at £1. On the evidence he had from informant, he did not think the value of the wood alleged to be taken by Mooney was £2.
After the informant’s evidence had been taken, he (the Magistrate) asked Mr Day if he elected to have the case tried summarily, or to go to the Supreme Court, and Mr Day elected to be tried summarily. He said that as the value set down in the information was only £1, it must be taken summarily.
His Worship said he would take, until to-morrow morning to consider the position.
We have been unable to find the conclusion of this case.
The 1896 Electoral roll had Richard listed as a carpenter and Isabella living in Waiapu, East Cape.
Tika passes away 24 January 1897 aged about 30-31, in his home at Russell Street, Napier, Hawkes Bay of typhoid fever (Death Certificate Number 1897/607), and leaving Isabella with three young children all under the age of 7.
He is buried in the Makaraka Cemetery near Gisborne, Block MKH plot number 297.
The Auckland Star ran his obituary on 30 January 1897, which reads;
The death is announced, at Napier, of Richard Maynard, the well-known footballer, who went home as a member of the New Zealand native team in 1888. Like the Warbrick’s, Kerr, and many others who have made their name in the colonies as exponents of the Rugby game, Maynard learned his football at St. Stephen’s Native School, Parnell. He afterwards played for the Albert’s senior team, and later on for the City district, after the district scheme was introduced. He represented Auckland in their Southern tour in 1889, and was also an Auckland rep. in 1892. He was a fine forward, and was well liked on and off the football field by all who came in contact with him. Since the native team returned to the colony in 1889, no less than seven of its members have now passed away, viz.:—Wi Karauria, Hawke’s Bay S. Webster, Auckland C. Goldsmith, Poverty Bay; W. Anderson, Thames, C. Madigan, Auckland J. Scott (the manager, who died in Nelson); and now R. Maynard.