Biographical entry: Wadrokal, Mano ( - 1894)



Mano Wadrokal was the first missionary on three of the Solomon Islands. Born on Mare in the Loyalty Islands adjoining New Caledonia, he was brought to St. John's College in Auckland by Bishop George Selwyn (q.v.) in 1852, baptised in 1854 and confirmed in 1856. He returned to Mare until the Melanesian Mission surrendered its interests there to the London Missionary Society, and then in 1873 he began a Melanesian Mission school on Savo, for Isabel people living there. He was ordained in 1874 and the next year became the first missionary on Isabel Island, achieving his first five baptisms two years later. After a holiday to Mare, in 1878 he became the first missionary in the Reef Islands, which had not been visited by the Mission since Bishop Patteson's (q.v.) death in 1871. Two years later he moved to Santa Cruz and became the first missionary to be based there, staying until 1885 when a serious illness forced him to leave. He retired to Mare in 1891 and died in 1894. He was accompanied and supported in his work by his wife Carrie. Wadrokal was a hot-tempered, dominating man, and today he would be thought a bully, but he had the strength that was required to spread the gospel to new islands in the 1870s. (Fox 1958, 99, 205)

Published resources


  • Fox, Charles E., Lord of the Southern Isles: Being the Story of the Anglican Mission in Melanesia, 1849-1949, Mowbray, London, 1958. Details