Rhonye McIlroy - paintings

Award-winning Canterbury artist Rhonye McIlroy is a direct descendant of Betty Guard, the first European woman resident in the South Island. The Guards' gripping story has a pivotal place in New Zealand history and informs all of McIlroy's current work - she tells the story of her ancestors with her unique paintings.

THE BIRTH OF JOHN GUARD

When Betty Guard, then just 16 years old, gave birth to John in 1831 he was the first Pakeha child born in the South Island.

CHIEF OAOITI AND BETTY GUARD - SOLD

Betty Guard and her two children were captured by Maori when the ship Harriet was beached at Taranaki. She narrowly avoided being slain and came under the protection of Chief Oaoiti, living with him as a 'wife' for four months before rescue.

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