South Island New Zealand

Prior to the Treaty signing, in 1836, the French whaler Jean Langlois negotiated with the Māori chief of the local Ngāi Tahu tribe, to buy Banks Peninsula for a French settlement. He returned to France but it took until the 20 March 1840 before a ship with 59 emigrants set sail to take up their French ownership of Banks Peninsula. While on their voyage however, the British were establishing their sovereignty of New Zealand with the Treaty signing. Many of the descendants of the original 59 emigrants are still in the community ensuring a strong French influence in Akaroa.

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