Australasia 1855: Tongan Intervention in Fiji
In the early 1840s war broke out in Fiji between Cakobau, the paramount Fijian chief and ruler of Bau, and a coalition led by the Confederation of Rewa. After Rewa badly defeated Bau at Kaba in 1853, Cakobau converted to Christianity and requested the aid of George Tupou, the Christian ruler of Tonga. The Tongans arrived in 1855, easily capturing Kaba and forcing Rewa to submit to Cakobau.
15 Jan–18 Sep 1855 Tongan intervention in Fiji▲
In January 1855 George Tupou, ruler of Tonga, departed Tongatapu with 36 canoes and over 3,000 warriors, headed for Fiji in support of his ally, Cakobau of Bau. After supplementing his forces in Lakeba with Tongans and Fijians under the command of Tongan prince Ma’afu, Tupou arrived in Bau before proceeding to Viti Levu, where he defeated the Confederation of Rewa and its allies at Kaba in April. For the next five months Tupou toured Fiji, pushing local chiefs to convert to Christianity and acknowledge Cakobau’s supremacy. He withdrew in September, leaving Ma‘afu dominant in eastern Fiji.
7 Apr 1855 Battle of Kaba▲
In late 1853 Cakobau, chief of Bau and paramount chief of Fiji, was badly defeated in an attack on Kaba, a fortified village held by the rival Confederation of Rewa on Viti Levu. Following the setback, Cakobau converted to Christianity and requested aid from George Tupou, the Christian ruler of Tonga. The Tongans arrived in 1855, easily capturing Kaba and forcing Rewa to submit to Cakobau.
5 May 1855–8 Jun 1856 Resettlement of Norfolk Island▲
In May 1855 the last British convicts on Norfolk Island were removed to Tasmania, leaving the island abandoned. A year later Norfolk was resettled by 194 Pitcairn Islanders—descendants of the HMS Bounty mutineers and Tahitians—and placed under the administration of New South Wales.