The island was settled by Mr Frederick Hunt and his family around 1841. There are plenty of recounts of how he purchased the island from a Maori Chief (Apitea Punga) at Owenga, for the price of a red jacket. There are also stories around of how he was avoiding on-going bad blood between him and a man named McClutchie.
There is an informative site here>> that covers quite a bit about the Hunt and Gregory-Hunt family of Pitt Island, although we will look at that soon.
Early settlers supplemented their income by providing provisions to the sealers and whalers that worked these waters back in the 1800s. One enentrepreneurialharacter, the patriarch of the Island; Frederick Hunt also used the island as a smuggling base, trading goods (potatoes, vegetables and fresh meat) for Rum and Brandy directly off the American whalers avoiding the Kings duty. Read more…..