About


Vincent O’Malley is a historian who has written and published extensively on the history of Māori and Pākehā relations in nineteenth century New Zealand. 
 
Born and raised in Christchurch, he moved to Wellington in 1993 on a short-term contract researching Treaty claims and more than 25 years later remains in the capital, working for iwi, the Waitangi Tribunal and other parties in the claims resolution process. 

It is through that work that he realised that this rich seam of New Zealand history was virtually unknown outside a relatively small group of claimants, lawyers and Tribunal officials. And so he began to publish some of his own research findings, including his widely-acclaimed and best-selling 2016 work on the Waikato War, which drew in part on earlier research for the Tribunal’s Rohe Pōtae (King Country) inquiry. It was through a similar desire to make this history accessible to a wide audience that he established this blog in 2012.

His books include: Agents of Autonomy: Māori Committees in the Nineteenth Century (Huia, 1998); The Beating Heart: A Political and Socio-Economic History of Te Arawa (Huia, 2008); The Treaty of Waitangi Companion: Māori and Pākehā from Tasman to Today (Auckland University Press, 2010); The Meeting Place: Māori and Pākehā Encounters, 1642-1840 (Auckland University Press, 2012); Beyond the Imperial Frontier: The Contest for Colonial New Zealand (Bridget Williams Books, 2014);  Haerenga: Early Māori Journeys Across the Globe (Bridget Williams Books, 2015); The Great War for New Zealand: Waikato 1800-2000 (Bridget Williams Books, 2016); and The New Zealand Wars/Ngā Pakanga o Aotearoa (Bridget Williams Books, 2019).

He was the 2014 J D Stout Research Fellow at Victoria University of Wellington, where he worked on his new history of the Waikato War (The Great War for New Zealand), and is a founding partner of HistoryWorks, a Wellington-based research consultancy specialising in Treaty of Waitangi research. He holds a BA (Hons) from the University of Canterbury and a PhD from Victoria University of Wellington. 

Vincent is joint principal investigator of a Marsden Fund (Royal Society of New Zealand) project on remembering and forgetting difficult histories in New Zealand, focussing specifically on the New Zealand Wars. He has been a finalist in the New Zealand book awards, received multiple research grants and awards and in 2017 was recipient of the Mary Boyd prize from the New Zealand Historical Association for the best article on any aspect of New Zealand history published over the previous two years.  He has served as editor on H-ANZAU (part of H-Net Humanities and Social Sciences Online) since 2016.

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