Historical British Tongan registers

The Tongan community in New Zealand will be able to trace historical identity records with a university now holding the registers of births, deaths and marriages for people of British descent born in Tonga.

The records show registrations of British subjects residing in Tonga from 1874 until 1968.

The University of Auckland’s Special Collections department received the records from the British High Commissioner to New Zealand, Jonathan Sinclair.

Special Collections manager Stephen Innes said the records were formerly held in the British Consulate in Nuku’alofa in Tonga.

Mr Innes said the Tongan registers would now be part of the Western Pacific Archives that began the university since 2002.

“We’ve had a lot of difficulties finding those records over the period we’ve held the Western Pacific Archives here. Simply because we didn’t know where they were.

“The births, deaths, marriage registers that were held by the local consulate. Because they belonged to a later period they didn’t become part of the colonial archives that went to the UK in the late 1970s.”

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