Partner Katherine Mansfield

Queer Places:
Wellington Girls College, Pipitea St, Thorndon, Wellington 6011, Nuova Zelanda

Maata Mahupuku aka Martha Grace (10 April 1890–15 January 1952) was descended from a New Zealand tribal leader. Of Māori descent, she identified with the Ngati Kahungunu iwi. She was the muse and lover of short story writer Katherine Mansfield.

Mahupuku was the granddaughter of a Maori chief, Wiremu Mahipuku.[1] She was born in Greytown, Wairarapa, New Zealand on 10 April 1890. Her father, Richard William Mahupuku, farmed sheep. He died when she was young and her mother, Emily Sexton, married another sheep farmer, Nathaniel Grace. She became known as Martha Grace.[2]

She is perhaps best-remembered for her relationship with the writer Katherine Mansfield who was two years older than her,[1] initially while they both at school in Wellington and then later in London and by correspondence.[2]

Mahupuku inherited substantial land and despite her lawyer embezzling some of her funds she was a rich woman.[2] She married George McGregor and was a public figure where she lived in New Zealand.[3]

Mansfield started a novel about her which Mahupuku claimed to have a full text of, but after Mansfield's death only a chapter and a plan were found. This was later completed and published.[2]


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