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Note A, page 7.
Having mentioned my printing for the Colonial Government on the formation of the Colony, I may here briefly relate a few circumstances in connexion with the same. My work began in January, 1840, --immediately on the arrival of H. M. S. "Herald," Capt. Nias, bringing Capt. Hobson, R. N., our first Governor, -- and continued at intervals throughout that year. During the time it lasted my life was truly a heavy one--doubly laborious! and though in good health and strong and willing I was well-nigh worn-out, and obliged at last to inform the Government, (officially through the Committee of Missionaries,) that I could not do any more public printing for them; as much of our Mission printing was sadly in arrear, &c. During that year the new Governor resided at Okiato, (about three miles up the inner S. E. arm of the harbour from Paihia, and on the opposite shore,) where, also were the Government offices; but many of their chief officers dwelt in different places on the neighbouring shores of the Bay where they could find suitable residence. A curious circumstance occurred in the printing of one of the Proclamations of the Government, viz., that proclaiming British Sovereignty over all the Islands of New Zealand, which ran thus; --"extending from 34 deg. 30' North to 47 deg. 10' South latitude," &c. I duly executed the order, and subsequently pointed out to them what I deemed to be an error-- North for South! Soon after that Proclamation was set aside, and a new and corrected one issued. One of the last works I executed for the Government was the printing of the first Government Gazette issued in the Colony, (December, 1840,) in four pages, demy 4to., --but without the Royal Arms. For all that I did for the Government I never received any pay or recompense whatever from them, neither anything extra from the Church Missionary Society; but I did receive a very handsome letter of thanks, wholly written by Governor Hobson himself, --although at that time from long illness and injury to his arm he was scarcely able to write.
Note B, page 8.
In the early days of the Church Mission in New Zealand, it was absolutely necessary to have a quantity of goods stored for the use of the various scattered Mission Stations, and for barter with the Maoris--wherewith to obtain daily food, &c. At that
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time and for long after there were neither stores nor shops in the land, and communication with England, or even with Sydney, was very rare, and not to be depended on. And as the Maori tribal wars were frequent and severe, it was needful to have a secure building in a suitable situation to contain the Mission goods; hence the large general Mission Store was erected at the head of the Kerikeri river. It was strongly built of stone on the bank of the river, and was quite a massy structure; certainly in those early days it had a very imposing appearance from there being no other building like it in all New Zealand; its white Sydney sandstone facings being, also, such a contrast to its dark-blue stone walls. It was especially striking in rowing up the long and desolate river, (not a house nor even a Maori plantation nor fishing-village on both its sides,) and coming suddenly upon it on rounding the last bend only a little distance ahead. The doors were very thick and strong, reminding me of those of a prison or a fort; and the windows were also well-secured on the inside with strong iron bars; so that on the whole it was pretty safe both from sudden Maori attack and from fire. The Kerikeri river is navigable for vessels of 100 tons to within three or four miles of the Station, and for small craft (such as the Mission Cutter) close up to the wharf alongside the Store. It was in this building that the Bishop of New Zealand, Dr. Selwyn, securely stored his large and valuable Library during his residence of three years at Te Waimate.
Note C, page 11.
The British Resident, Mr. James Busby, resided in his own house at Waitangi, Bay of Islands; this was about two miles by the sea-beach from the Mission Station at Paihia, with a small navigable tidal river between, and he had no neighbours. A Maori Chief of middle rank had taken offence for some small matter, (an easy and common thing in those days!) and Maorilike was determined to have his revenge. So, one night, he crept stealthily through the garden up to the house with his loaded musket, and squatted in the front verandah; and having, as he thought, exactly determined Mr. Busby's position (who was sitting writing at his table in his parlour,) from the shadow cast from the lamp on to the window-blind, he took steady aim and fired at his head! the shadow, however, being both enlarged and raised, the ball, fortunately, passed a little above his head, and lodged in the plaster of the wall of the room. The would-be man-slayer then returned to his people and village, not very far off; he was, however, soon known, as he did not attempt to conceal it, rather the contrary. The evil deed naturally caused a great deal of disquietude among the unprotected white residents scattered throughout the Bay; and no small number of meetings and amount of inflamed talk with the friendly Maoris. Mr. Busby
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Between Paihia and Waitangi
With Paihia appearing in the foreground
H. B. HERALD LITHO. D. Blair, lith.
Anchorage; Bay of Islands; from Nihonui; August 3/38. W.C.
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bore it all very well; and eventually a block of land lying between Waitangi and Te Waimate was publicly ceded to the British Government as a kind of compensation for the crime.
Note D, page 12.
His kind note which came with them is so highly characteristic of him, that I am tempted to make an extract from it. --
"Waimate, March 14th, 1836.
"My dear Friend,
"I herewith send you twelve chapters of Matthew, and will endeavour to have more in readiness very shortly..... While employed in your own particular department you will have the comfort of knowing, that you are fulfilling one of the most important parts of the work, a work without which the rest will be paralysed. I trust when you see the result of your own labours in the hands of the natives, knowing the blessing that must follow, you will be able to rejoice with a joy which will not be intermeddled with. The Missionary body in New Zealand hang together as members of one body, and you may depend upon it, that so far as you are concerned, the rest of the members will do their utmost, not only to remove every difficulty, but to render every assistance which is practicable.
"Wishing you more encouragement in your work, and hoping that we may rejoice together over it,
"I remain, Yours most truly,
(signed) "W. WILLIAMS."
Note E, page 13.
And not only for such a reason as is there assigned. More than once during the printing of the New Testament my household Maori lads (or young men) left me, unexpectedly and suddenly, and that without notice or warning. This, however, was mainly owing to their belonging to the neighbouring tribes and villages. I well recollect on one occasion in particular, (in January 1837,) how I was served by them, and how I also managed to turn the tables upon them! it is worth relating. One morning after School and breakfast, I left my dwelling-house for the Printing-office, as usual; giving directions to the man-cook to get ready the simple dinner. It had so happened that morning, that I had been obliged to say a few words to one of my rowers, (a high-minded young chief named Hatete, lately come to reside with me from his tribe at Waiomio a village a few miles beyond Te Kawakawa.) On my return to my house at the dinner hour, I found all hands had vanished! taking all their clothing and blankets with them, leaving behind on the table a very laconic note, containing these words, --"E mara, kua riro matou: hei kona ra." (= 0 Sir, we are gone: remain in peace.) Disappoint-
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ment and vexation having subsided; I found, they had not gone away by water in a canoe, the usual course, therefore I surmised they had gone to the pa (village) at Te Kawakawa by an overland route, a long hilly and difficult way, little known and rarely ever used, one which they could not possibly travel over in a single day, and there were no intermediate villages, so I laid my plan accordingly. The next morning early I started in my whale-boat, with four Maori rowers, kindly lent me by Mr Baker, for Te Kawakawa, and arrived there at the pa just after the runaways! who were then relating their escapade in a crowded circle of their own people. And so intent were all hands to listen, that no one saw me until I made my debut suddenly among than. (This I had contrived, on nearing the upper landing-place with almost muffled oars; my Maori crew entering heartily into the plan; as I feared if the alarm was given (they having arrived before me), they would have secreted themselves or gone farther,) I did not speak to them, at first, but to the chiefs and people, and it ended well, --in matters being cordially made up between us, and in my bringing them back with me in my boat to Paihia, where we arrived late at night. The next morning at the School, their appearance caused much derision. To the credit of their fathers and the old chiefs they all gave them good advice, and roundly took my part, as by the runaways' own showing I had done them no harm, and still further (as the chiefs said) I was engaged for them all on that great work the printing of the Maori New Testament. My prompt and effective acting on that occasion stood me in good service afterwards. All the New Zealand Missionaries had frequently to contend (or rather, put up) with conduct of this kind on the part of Maori domestics (both male and female) and workmen. Such, too, was sometimes shown when it could not well or readily be met or borne; --even by a guide in an unknown part of the country, as I have too often proved. That "pokanoa" (as it was well and expressively termed) sodden and entire change of mind, or work, without cause; mutability, fickleness; --was a well-known trait of the Maori character, and far too common among themselves.--
Note F, page 16.
One day I had to cross the Bay to Kororareka, purposely to bury one of those poor fellows whom I had known, and who was drowned in attempting to ford this river in his way to the Bay from Te Waimate, I myself have had to swim across at various times; and on one occasion in particular had a very unpleasant time of it. I was returning to Paihia from Te Waimate, on foot, and on my arrival at the river I saw it was under flood, the water being also muddy. I did not like to go back to Te Waimate, as my day had been fixed for my return to Paihia, and I feared I could not carry all my clothing over on my head
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dry, --it being however the summer season I was very thinly clad. While I was deliberating, and trying the depth of the water near me with a string and stone tied at the end of some rods, (flower-stalks of flax joined together,) a party of Maoris, men; and women, (who were encamped in the neighbourhood on the opposite side,) made their appearance through the fern and scrub and squatted down on the bank of the river, watching my movements. Being strangers they would not assist me, --other than to offer to fetch my clothes and carry them across before me, which I would not agree to. It was a time of great embarrassment; the day, too, was passing, and I had many miles yet to travel, ---besides the ugly dreaded WHauwhauroa crossing at low tide!) They lined the bank in the sun at the only landing place; laughing and saying--they wanted to see how well a White-man could swim, &c, &c. As there was no alternative I prepared for the worst--a good wetting of my clothes. I cut flax leaves and tied up my clothing in a pretty compact bundle, which I fastened up so as to carry on my head, keeping my shirt loose in my straw hat. I had previously sounded the depth of the water, and, at last, entered the river backwards, and when out of depth turned and swam till near the opposite shore, when feeling the ground, I again turned, and by degrees put on my shirt, and so got to the bank, --not a little vexed with that party of Maoris; who, however, were loud in their praises (?) of "the cunning While man;" and who, long after, said, had they but known me, or had I told them my name, they would have assisted me to cross. [To tell one's name, at any time, was, however, not in accordance with Maori etiquette.] The great danger in crossing the New Zealand rivers in the olden time, arose from the denseness of the tangled vegetation on the banks, which also extended overhanging a long way out into the river; so that if you did not happen to hit the one narrow and worn landing place, through the rapidity of the current, there was little chance of getting to the bank at all.
Note G, page 17.
A notable instance of this kind occured in the summer of 1836. There had been for some time sad variance between two sub-tribes of NGapuhi, respecting the rights to a piece of waste land on the outer coast between WHangaruru and WHangarei; and at last it was agreed by both parties, to lake their case to Waitangi, and there for Mr Busby, British Resident, and the Church Missionaries of Paihia, to hear and to act as umpires, and so end the quarrel. At the time fixed, a large party of Maoris assembled there, and Messrs H. Williams and C. Baker went thither from Paihia--I remaining in charge at the Station. In the afternoon their decision was given, which so exasperated the losing side, (mostly wild heathen,) that they flew to their
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arms, which they had secretly brought and hidden, and fired right and left, killing two and wounding others of the other side who were unarmed. The consternation was great! The killed and wounded were brought to Paihia; one of the two killed was a fine young man of the Station, a married domestic of the Rev. H. Williams named Taha, and one of my best Maori teachers in the adult Maori School, where he had on that morning worked with me! The wounded I had to attend to, and one of them, a chief of rank from WHangarei, was shot very seriously through the groin, so that for some time his life was despaired of, but he was eventually cured, and became a Christian. He remained several weeks at Paihia in my charge. For a considerable time after that occurrence armed bodies from the wounded party and their friends came continually to Paihia, to meet, to talk, and to combine for war, to avenge their loss; but after some time, through our always meeting with them and advocating peace, we prevailed. The loss of time, however, was great, all work at a standstill.
Note H, page 17.
The interesting and pleasing visit of Daniel Wheeler and his son George, Members of the Society of Friends, in their yacht "Henry Freeling," should also be briefly noted by me, as it was both unique and of good service. These good Christian men had been making a religious visit to the various Missions in the South Sea, and were now on their return voyage to England. They arrived in the Bay of Islands in November 1836 and remained nearly two months with us; during which time they visited several of our nearer Mission Stations. D. Wheeler, being both aged and rather infirm in body, was carried by Maoris in a chair when visiting the inland Mission Stations. On one Sunday in December, according to appointment, they accompanied me in my Mission boat to Te Kawakawa, whither I went to hold Divine Service, and where D. Wheeler preached in English to the Maoris, I interpreting. It happened to be his birthday (when he attained his 65th year), and this was an extra theme of rejoicing with him. We spent a pleasant day together; a day to be remembered! As we were obliged to land at the lower landing-place owing to the state of the tide, the elder felt the long walk through the fern and scrub to the pa (about a mile), which also caused us to be rather late; on our return we were overtaken by rain just us we got to our boat, but we reached their vessel and the Mission Station, "all right"-- save a wetting. I saw them often, and having been formerly well-acquainted at Home with Members of their Society, (also, occasionally attending their places of worship,) I was very much pleased with their visit, and they with the Printing-office and the work then in hand, Their yacht was very nicely found, and
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their state-cabin or sitting-room was fitted up with an astonishing number of curious articles and natural specimens from the Islands; giving it the appearance of a Museum. I retain many pleasing recollections of their visit. They reached England in safety, and published an interesting account of their long voyage; but have both long ago been gathered to their fathers.
Not very long after they had left us, the Rev. S. Marsden with his daughter and voyaging companions arrived at Paihia; they came by the way of Hokianga and Te Waimate, and remained with us till the 4th July. On Good Friday, (about a week after Mr Marsden's arrival,) I had a very peculiar and unpleasant adventure. [I quote chiefly from my Journal.] Called on, unexpectedly, this morning, to go up the harbour to Pomare's pa, Otuihu, to bury a man who had been murdered by the Maoris two days before, and also buried secretly by them at the foot of the high cliff near which the pa stands. There were several Missionaries at this time at Paihia, who had come to see Mr Marsden, but I was told off on this errand. I went with the Captain of the American whale-ship in his boat, from the Station, he taking a coffin he had got made on board, and spades, &c., and a crew of six or seven strong seamen, the murdered man having been his steward. On landing under the cliff, I directed the seamen to disinter the body. A Maori who was there, ran up the hill to the pa, to inform Pomare; the Chief soon made his appearance on the brow of the farther cliff, and bawled down to stop! while I encouraged the men to proceed: they however were afraid and irresolute, half-hesitated and talked, and did not work as they should have done. I told them they were not Englishmen!--for they had soon uncovered the body, only slightly put under the earth, (or rather thrown there at the foot of the cliff and a, little clay from the face of the cliff knocked down upon it,) and they might have got it easily enough on board of their boat alongside the bank in deep water. Pomare then came down to where we were, in a boiling rage! and first he vented his passion on an unfortunate. European who lived there close by in a small hut, (as he had pointed out to us the spot where the body lay,) and not content with striking him, persisted in driving him into the sea! Meanwhile, the crew had taken to their boat, with their spades, leaving the coffin, and pushed off into deeper water. I saw that Pomare had been drinking, and I interfered on behalf of the poor ill-used White; this brought the chief on me. I happened to say, in our wordy dispute, that Rum had turned his head!--which, of course, was immediately magnified into a dreadful curse! and he got into a towering passion, declaring, if I were not a Missionary he would kill me! I took off my hat, and lowering my head close to him called on him to strike, &c, &c. He got worse and worse, at length demanding that the coffin should be given up to him;
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this I was determined to resist and ordered the wondering crew to jump out and take it on board their boat. He demanded, "Why I dared to dig without first asking his leave?" I retorted, "Why did you, or your men, dare to murder the White-man without first asking leave of us?" He ordered me to the boat I refused to go; he came up and gave me a shove, I retaliated with another; he repeated it, and so did I: fortunately our handy-work ended here. The Captain and crew, seeing how matters were, wished me to enter the boat, saying, they should abandon the job; on hearing this I requested them to come back, and bury the body deeper; this they did. Pomare now said, I should never again enter his pa; I rejoined, I would do so, and then and there that very day before I should leave. He returned slowly to his house, stopping and warning me not to follow. Of course many Maori were now looking-on, silent spectators. I climbed the high hill, or zig-zag track up the face of the cliff, after Pomare, (much against the expressed wishes of the Captain and his boat's crew,) and went on to the entrance of his large house, and sat down on the door-step; he and many of his people were inside, and a bottle of rum was handed round, of which all bands partook. After some time, I rose to go back (as the boat was waiting for me), telling Pomare, I had fulfilled my promise. On my way down the hill, Pomare came out and called after me to take away the body; but the Captain would not have any more to do with it, --saying, they had done their duty, &c. --I learned afterwards, that the poor steward was greatly liked on board of his ship; he had only gone ashore at the pa (below or rather on the strand on the other side, where the grog-shops, &c, were) three days before, in the afternoon on a two-hours' leave, and was returning sober to his ship carrying a bottle of rum, which some of the Maoris seeing demanded from him; he refused to give it up, on which they pursued him and he ran into the sea, where in the end they killed him; and then to hide their deed, dragged the body to the farther side and deposited it at the foot of the cliff, &c. The Captain, in his search after the missing steward, had gathered this (privately) from the White residents, but the Maoris of the pa had denied the deed, also the burial; so that it would have been useless to apply to the chief. --This was one of the few cases in which, during my long residence in New Zealand, (though often in danger,) I was struck by a Maori, or struck one in return; but I would never put up with a blow.--
Note I, page 17.
Two or three rather peculiar events that occurred during this long and dreary struggle of internecine warfare in the Bay may be mentioned; especially as such are never likely to happen again. But, in order the better to understand them,
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one should first know something of the fighting ground and the position of the combatants. Several of the smaller tribes of the NGapuhi (united) were in arms against the two chiefs Pomare and Te Mauparaoa and their followers and adherents; the head quarters of the NGapuhi allies was at Kororareka (now Russell), which commanded the outer harbour; that of Pomare and Te Mauparaoa at Otuihu (where these chiefs both dwelt), an almost impregnable castellated war pa at the head of the narrower inner harbour, centrally situated between the two navigable estuaries of the rivers Te Kawakawa and Waikare, and commanding the whole of the inner waters, and about six miles from Kororareka. On a fine calm morning in the summer of that year (1837), at a very early hour, when the waters of the Bay were like glass, before the daily rising of the ruffling sea-breeze, --a small canoe with only one man in it was seen paddling in haste from Te Wahapu on the opposite shore of the narrow harbour (and about half the distance between Otuihu and Kororareka,) towards Waitangi on the Paihia side. This man was the (afterwards) renowned Hoani Heke. He had crossed over before day from his village at Te Ti on the Waitangi river, to purchase powder from the merchants' stores at Te Wahapu wherewith to carry on the fight; and the eagle eyes of the foe from their eyrie or look-out on the high pa at Otuihu had descried the little canoe, and rightly guessed the errand. In a twinkling Pomare's big war-canoe, being all ready at anchor, was manned, and now the exciting chase began! Heke had seen her coming, and well-knew there was no hope for him there--at Te Wahapu --among his White friends, (who also were anxious to get rid of him, knowing they were powerless to protect him;) and so he put out to sea, taking his kegs of powder with him, really paddling for dear life! I suppose there were at least sixty rowers in that fine and handsome canoe; she glided through the water like a fast steamer, only noiselessly; while those on board of her (warriors) who were well armed with guns kept up a continual and rapid fire upon the tiny cockleshell fleeing before them. And Heke! he, too, dared to return the same; absolutely laying down his paddle now and then, and loading his piece and firing at them backwards over his shoulder--in mere defiance and bravado!! All hands in the Mission Station were out on the sea bank looking out, expecting every moment to see him struck with the balls playing around him; and feeling sure he could not possibly escape from the fleet war-canoe rushing after him; death seemed imminent --certain. But when the war-canoe had come down into the more open harbour, clearing the peninsula Toretore beyond Te Wahapu, and getting abreast of Kororareka, the NGapuhi there, hearing the firing and seeing what was up, had speedily man-
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ned their canoes, and came out to the rescue and the attack; when Pomare wisely returned. From an entry in my Journal, I find, that shortly after this, the NGapuhi tribes went up one morning in 36 canoes and boats to attack Otuihu; they landed there and fought, and several were killed and wounded on both sides; among them some head chiefs of note. In the evening they returned to Kororareka, bringing off their own dead and wounded, and also the bodies (chopped up warm and divided among them) of two chiefs of their foes, killed in that day's fight, who had only the day before arrived at Otuihu from the interior to join Pomare; both, too, were good friends of mine. For one of them, in particular, Te Koukou, I felt very much; for he had recently received me and my travelling party of Christian Maoris very hospitably, on my visiting his pa for the first time in my returning overland from WHangarei to the Bay; and had also then given in his adherence to Christianity. Hearing that the Maoris at Te Ti (near us), had got an arm and shoulder of Te Koukou as their share of that war-spoil! I walked there early the next morning and induced the chiefs to give them up to me, --the mischievous and brave chief Te Kemara, himself climbing the tall Karaka tree to bring them down; to my surprise the whole arm, &c, was still supple! (Te Kemara was a little lithe nimble fellow, though of middle-age, and being fully and closely tattooed so as to be almost black, he always reminded me, when in heroics! (and he just could roll his eyes and grimace!) of one of Dante's demons--in Inferno!!) I subsequently saw at Kororareka, other and sickening portions of Te Koukou's body, hacked and stuck up on the tabooed temporary fence erected around the body of the great chief Pi, of the Mahurehure tribe, also slain the same day in that fight; Pi with his people had come over from Hokianga on the West Coast to join NGapuhi in the fight. The body of Pi was laid out in great state, &c, &c.; and as I had visited this large party of allies on their arrival at the Bay, while they were encamped at Waitangi, (before they crossed over to Kororareka,) and addressed them as to possible consequences, I now went inside the sacred enclosure, (much to the dislike of many of the Maoris present,) and took my stand close to the dead chief's body, and there told them my mind. To narrate the whole scene and what took place on this sad occasion would take too long. However, I could not prevail on them to give me the fragments of Te Koukou, all I could obtain was, a promise they should not be cooked and eaten; but two of the head chiefs of Kororareka, Rewa and Te WHarerahi, gave up the portions in their possession for burial.--
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Several attacks were made at Otuihu by the united NGapuhi, who had always several miles of water to cross before they could begin operations; sometimes they turned out twice in the week; while Pomare and his party kept in their pa and never once ventured to return the aggression by attacking his foes at Kororareka; yet he did go down more than once into the Bay of Kororareka, in his fine war-canoe, and there blaze away-- but not within gun-shot. During this long war we (the Missionaries) had often tried in vain to bring about a peace between the belligerents. The great obstacle, at first and for some time, being, that the scales could never be made equipollent; as, according to Maori custom, peace could never be brought about until this was accomplished or nearly so, -- losses on both sides must be made square or equal. On the one day the NGapuhi side were the heavy losers in fighting; on the subsequent day the other side were so, too--and beyond what was required! and so it went on.--
One day in particular, towards the end of the war, when (it was said) a decisive assault was to be made by the NGapuhi, I accompanied the Rev. H. Williams in his Mission-boat to the fighting-ground. Our boat pulled up the harbour to Opua, where we landed on the little beach, and walked out over the rocks to the bold cliff, whence we had a full view of Otuihu on the opposite shore directly before us about half a mile distant. The NGapuhi had previously landed on both sides of the narrow arm of the harbour, and taken up their position on the two jutting headlands, --one at Opua where we two were, and the one nearly opposite, Oropa, --where, they swarmed on the exposed ridges. A large amount of musket-firing was kept up on both sides, but very little harm was done, owing to the two parties being too distant from each other. We two were pretty safe, being partly sheltered by the steep rocky headland and by the large overhanging Pohutukawa trees that grew there, while with our glasses we could easily watch Otuihu. Pomare's people made some slight advance towards their foes in canoes, from which they kept firing as well as from the cliffy brow of their pa above, but only now and then balls fell among or near the NGapuhi. While this a being carried on a rare thing happened: a reckless bravo (toa warrior) paddled fearlessly from Otuihu towards the NGapuhi in a little dingy--or rely small canoe (kopapa). suited for one or, at most, two persons; he actually came over into the open water in the midst of those two headlands, nearly abreast of us two on the rocky point, between the two bands of NGapuhi! and there he openly defied them in his song, brandishing his paddle, and turning round put his head down in his canoe and smacked his naked posteriors at them!! which done he paddled back to his party unhurt, singing as he went.
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The NGapuhi showered balls at him from both ridges; they fell around him like hail, splashing the water around him, but he escaped; I don't think his canoe was hit. It seemed to me that the fellow really had a charmed life; it was one of the most coolly sustained foolhardy doings I ever witnessed. We both made sure he must be killed, and marvelled much at his escape, while the NGapuhi were very savage over it; at the same time setting it down to the efficacy of the karakia (= spells) which had been used, and on which he had relied. They, also, had both seen and heard of similar feats having been performed before--in the olden time.--
On that day, too, I watched some of the NGapuhi side (raw recruits?) load and fire off their guns, mostly old flint-and-steel muskets; some actually held their pieces nearly vertical and turned away their faces when they fired; while some, in their haste, fired away their ramrods! one, who was very near me, in loading bit off the end of his cartridge and cast it down; seeing it was a printed scrap (a most rare thing! for there were no common Newspapers then, and I never allowed a bit of printed (or waste) paper to go out,) I took it up and on untwisting it found it to be a portion of a leaf of an English Bible, and to my astonishment containing these words--"How long have I to live?" (2 Sam. xiii, 34.) I showed it to Mr. Williams who was equally surprised. I afterwards heard at Kororareka of some books having been stolen by the Maoris there for the purpose of making cartridges, and among them was a Bible; paper of all kinds being then with them very scarce.--
I have mentioned, above, what was at first the cause that hindered peace being made; and afterwards--when both sides were pretty well tired of the costly and savage game at which they had been so long playing, and the general planting season near, --the second obstacle was the demand made by the NGapuhi, that Pomare should cede to them certain lands on the adjoining Waikare estuary. A day was, at length, fixed for a meeting at Otuihu and fully discussing the terms of peace, when all the Missionaries then in the Bay district went up to Otuihu in the big Mission boat, having a white table-cloth flying at the mast head as a Peace standard; several neutral (or related) Maori Chiefs also going thither in their canoes; there we spent that day in endeavouring to bring matters to meet--but, again, in vain! as Pomare would not yield any land for that purpose, having had also a large number of killed and wounded on his side. Notwithstanding, peace was firmly made within a fortnight from that visit; and about the same length of time after the Rev. S. Marsden's last departure from New Zealand.--
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-Note J, page 21.
I have said, that silver and gold coin was very scarce, -- in fact, not required. I never had any; a few small coins (silver and copper) I had happened to have on my landing in New Zealand remained unused in my desk for many years. All our monetary requirements were met by small Orders, which were in high request at the few Merchants' Stores, as by-and-by when they made up a pretty large amount they were exchanged for Bills on the Society in London. The only coins I saw for several years (and then only casually and in the possession of others,) were dollars in silver and doubloons in gold. The American dollars however, were much sought after by some of the Storekeepers; those of Mexico bearing a greater exchange value than those of the United States.
Note K, page 23.
On the 1st January we left the Bay in the Mission Schooner "Columbine"; on the 4th we anchored inside of Tauranga harbour (under Maunganui), and remained on shore till the 12th, visiting the various pas there--Maungatapu, Otumoetai, &c., in which were a great number of Maoris, some of whom I had formerly seen at Paihia. Here I gained some curious information from old priests. On the 12th we recommenced our voyage, and landed at WHarekahika (Hicks' Bay) on the 16th, there we found Te Houkamau, one of the principal Chiefs of the East Coast district, with a number of his people. I should, perhaps, here mention, that on our leaving the vessel, (which was to proceed to Poverty Bay and there await our arrival overland, by the Coast) the steward and others cried! saying "They should never see us again!" Such was their opinion of the East Coast Maoris (from the East Cape Southwards), who had long borne a bad name for being treacherous to shipping and to seamen visiting their shores. From Hicks' Bay we travelled on by the Coast to the Valley of Waiapu; astonished at several things both natural and artificial we there saw. 1. the large amount of grassy plains and hills wholly unknown at the North: 2. the immense size and strength of their war pas, closely filled with houses: 3. the great number of the people, all healthy. We also noticed the absence of some of the commoner and picturesque trees of the North, --especially the shore loving Maanawa (= Mangrove), and the Pohutukawa; the Kauri, too, was not seen inland in the forests.
We halted at Rangitukia, a very large and well-built pa, where we stayed a few days. Soon after our tents were pitched in an open space or square within it, we found that we could not get outside for any purpose! the Maoris were
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so numerous, forming a compact mass of many hundreds-- men, women, and children, --all eager to satisfy their curiosity and see and observe the White-man! At last we were obliged to appeal to the head chief, to have a way of egress and ingress left open to us, and he repeatedly spoke to his people, but in vain; the foremost ranks being hemmed in by those in the rear; (for all the world such as I had formerly seen in a dense London mob.) At length, and as a last resource, the Chief threw off his fine dress mat garment, and went naked to work! rushing up and butting like a ram against the people, who were soon tumbling all of a heap on all sides --mainly from the fear and dread of being touched by his head, which, of course, would make them tapu (= sacred) for a season, and so be attended by disagreeable consequences of privation to themselves. However he suceeded in clearing a way for us, --though many high words followed, used by other chiefs of note who were also overthrown pell-mell in the melee!
From Rangitukia we went further up the Waiapu Valley to WHakawhitira, a very large pa, the largest by far that I (or we) had ever seen. Its fence was also threefold, the massy and combined outer one being twenty-five to thirty feet high; its main posts consisting of entire and straight trees denuded of their bark, with large carved full-length human figures painted red on their tops, --of these figure there were above a hundred. During our stay there, we measured, by stepping, one of the sides of this pa, and found it to be more than a mile in length! and the huge carved figures we ascertained to be more than six feet high, with their heads fully and deeply tattooed; --this we proved from one that had been broken off and fallen, and placed upright below its big post. I took a sketch of this pa (as I had also done of Rangitukia) which I still have.
While at Tokomaru (the large pa at the North end of that bay), being tired of cliff climbing and beach walking (there being no footpaths nor tracks along the coast from one pa to another,) we gladly accepted the offer of the chiefs to take us by canoe to Uawa (Tolaga Bay); so, one morning we left Tokomaru pa in a big canoe well-manned; but the sea rose high before we had gained the southern headland of the bay, and for some time it was doubtful whether we should be able to round it--or ever land again, for we were in great danger. Apart from our perilous situation, it was truly a magnificent sight! to see those big ocean billows breaking on the rocks around, and our little bark threading her winding way in the hollows between them. The chiefs, seeing the danger, held a short consultation, whether to go on or to attempt to return to Tokomaru; I believe they would have
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returned, but they feared to attempt turning the canoe in the great swell we were in lest it should be upset. I was never more impressed with the admirable skill at navigation possessed by the Maori! how readily the rowers (or paddlers) obeyed every command given by the skilled steersman, and how regularly and ably they wrought! The chiefs, too, and the Kai-tuki (= singer- of canoe-songs --which is done both to encourage the paddlers and to enable them to keep time,) retained their standing positions in the canoe and never flinched! On rounding the headland we landed in a delightful little cove, called Te Mawhai, having a curious looking high pillared rook just at its entrance, and there launching a still bigger canoe (which was hauled up high and dry and protected under a long covered shed,) we started afresh for Uawa. On arriving at the bar at the mouth of the river, most of our crew jumped overboard and holding-on took us over the bar in safety. I need not remark how glad we were, to get safely on shore; not merely on account of the dangers we had passed, but from being cramped up in the canoe daring our very long day's paddling --I suppose quite forty miles! While stopping here I conversed with old chiefs who had seen Capt. Cook and his ships when at anchor here in this bay.
I may also mention, that all along the Coast, in many places, we saw small rafts hauled up above high water mark, each being eight or ten feet long and three or four feet wide, composed of only a few small poles, roughly and distantly but very strongly lashed together with open spaces between them. On these the East Coast Maoris went out to fish in deep-water, one on each; and also, (when opportunity offered) to a ship with a pig, or two, fastened to the raft! They said, these rafts were quite safe, more so indeed than a small or middle-size canoe, as there was no danger of upsetting.
We were nearly a fortnight in reaching Poverty Bay from our leaving the ship, and great was the joy of our shipmates when they saw us! having given us up. After staying some time at this bay, visiting its neighbouring pas and villages, we left on our return to the Bay of Islands, visiting also Tauranga (a second time) and the upper Thames (Waiheke, &c.,) on our voyage back. --
I have already mentioned my bringing back with me to Paihia nine youths and young men for Instruction, &c.; two of them became useful pressmen, and served well in the Printing-office. At that period the Rev. Dr. John Dunmore Lang (of Sydney), arrived at the Bay, where he stayed some time on the opposite shore of the harbour; during which he once visited the Mission Station at Paihia. It so happened that I alone was at home on that day and so received him at my house; he sat some time with me, made several
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enquiries, and partook of refreshments; when he expressed a wish to see the Printing-office, of which he had heard; on our going thither and entering it, he manifested great astonishment and pleasure at seeing the two young Maori pressmen at work, and that, too, by themselves alone in the office. I mention this little incident here, because when Dr. Lang published his account of his visit to the Bay of Islands, he not only said a few unkind things in it of the Church Mission in the Bay, (which he had gathered from the idle and their associates at the port of Kororareka,) but he also carefully abstained from mentioning this circumstance, at which he had showed so much satisfaction, or even alluding to it!
1 may further remark, that one of those young Maoris learned to write before that he could read! and so, sometimes, wrote to his relations and tribe down South. Maoris in our Station School generally learned to read well (beginning with A) in six months; they privately diligently conned their one book in spare hours and in wet weather. In the reading classes in school there was generally great attention and emulation shown to catch one of the older scholars making a mistake--and so taking him down, to which they always good-humouredly submitted.
Another circumstance I should also mention, as forcibly showing the great power of the mind and feelings (superstitious imagination) over a strong healthy man. And this, I have ever believed, is the root of that fearful power formerly so very prevalent among them, and so greatly dreaded, under the name of maakutu (= deadly spells and witchcraft); of which even Settlers of to-day have also heard something. Not very long after our return to the Bay of Islands, a serious epidemic suddenly became common, among Whites as well as Maoris and some of the former and many of the latter died after only a very short illness. The attack began with common feverish symptoms, severe headache and determination of blood to the head, soon followed by swelled and sore throat, which quickly carried off the sufferer. I myself was attacked, and indeed brought very low--all but entirely given up! My Maori lads (now eleven in number) were all naturally very anxious about me, and scarcely cared to cook food for themselves, or to eat; at the same time they were all well and had escaped this sickness. On the last day of my very severe illness, when it was known that the crisis was at hand; one of those young men whom I had brought from Tologa Bay, -- a stout, strong, healthy, able, fearless Maori, --who was much attached to me, --fully believed that I should die that night; he would not be consoled by nor even listen to the Missionaries present, neither by the Doctor, Ford, who also attended
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closely on him, and by the next morning he, poor fellow! was dead, --and the unfavourable crisis was also passed with me. Dr. Ford always maintained, that there was nothing whatever ailing him physically, on the contrary he was perfectly healthy; it was solely the effects of his imagination!! in which I concurred. Possibly, had he been allowed to see me, in my bed, he might have recovered. I have also known of cases somewhat similar occurring among the Maoris; but this is the more striking from the fact, that it was not the fear of maakutu falling on the sufferer himself, but on another to whom he was attached.--
Note L, page 25.
On several occasions in former years I had brought this matter, of a new consonant being required for the New Zealand language, before the Committee of Missionaries, but always without anything definitely being settled about it. Again, in July, 1841, at their half-yearly meeting, in an official letter to their Secretary, I made the following request, (among several others):--
"9. An order, authorizing the adoption of an additional consonant, in order that the deficiency still existing of some character to represent the "wh" sound, --a subject of material and increasing consequence, --may be, without any further delay, supplied."--
The reply was, --"Wait a little, until we consult Rev. W. Williams:" (who was then residing at Poverty Bay.)
In September of that year I also wrote to him on this subject; from his letter in reply I make the following extract:--
--"With regard to the orthography of words beginning with "w," and the propriety of making a distinction to mark the "wh" sound; I have to make the following observations:--
"If the general opinion be in favor of an alteration which would doubtless make reading easier to an Englishman beginning the language, I do not object to a change. Should such be the decision of the collective wisdom of North and South, I would suggest that your proposal of the letter "v" be adopted to make the "wh" sound. I have not heard on the subject from the Northern District Secretary. Perhaps an accented "w" would be more appropriate, and would do less violence to the orthography. --Turanga, Sept. 7, 1841."
Time rolled by, and another year was half through; and as nothing had been done by the Northern District Committee of Missionaries in this matter, at their subsequent half-yearly Meeting in January, 1842, (and as the Rev. W. Williams did not now meet with them, he belonging to the Southern District,)--in June, 1842, I wrote the following letter to their Secretary:--
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"Paihia, June 13, 1842.
"My dear Sir
"I enclose for the consideration of the Committee a few printed Maori sentences, as a specimen of certain proposed alterations, which, for some time past, have been had in contemplation by different individuals who have given their attention to the Native language; one of which, it is thought, it is highly expedient should be adopted with as little delay as possible.
"I believe that it is now very generally conceded, by all parties understanding the Native tongue and competent to give an opinion thereon, that some character is still wanting to represent that sound in such common use, and hitherto known in oral communication by the combined consonants "wh." Believing this, it is not my intention to say anything further on the necessity of selecting some character to represent the same.
"Among several characters that have been from time to time proposed by different persons, to convey the idea of the sound under consideration, the following are the principal; -- viz. the "wh," (which has been lately partially adopted by the Wesleyan Missionaries in their books, and by the Rev. R. Maunsell in his "Grammar,")--the inverted comma "'", --the apostrophe"'", --the "f", --and the "v". Printed sentences, containing these characters, I now lay before the Committee, on whom it will devolve to say, --which shall be chosen to distinguish this peculiar and hitherto undistinguished sound.
"I beg, also, to offer a few remarks, which I venture to hope may not prove altogether unworthy the attention of the Committee.
1. "That the "wh," though at present in partial use, being two consonants is at variance with the universally acknowledged fundamental rule of all the Polynesian dialects--of no two consonants without a vowel between. If, however, it be urged, that the "wh" is here to be considered as only one character, then it will, of course, have to stand in the Alphabet under its own proper name; and therefore, from its possessing a heavy inelegant appearance, from its taking up much room in printing (owing to its size), and much time in writing from its complex shape, --I think it should be rejected.
2. "That the character wanted being intended to represent a true and distinct consonant-sound, and not merely the lengthening nor the shortening of a sound already produced by any one of the present number of consonants, the proposed addition of an inverted comma, or apostrophe, to the "w," would not be at all adequate to the thing required. Besides which, either is liable to the same objection as that already adduced against the "wh," --the being at variance
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with all the printed Polynesian dialects. To say nothing of the very hiatus-like appearance which such marks always impart to printed pages, particularly in long words and with large type.
3. "That in my proposing the "v" to represent the character in question, it has been borne in mind, --1. that it is already in use in several of the Polynesian dialects:--2. that it is a small and neat, and (in writing) a quickly-formed character:--3. that the Rev. J. Hobbs (at present the Wesleyan Superintendent,) has promised to use his influence in getting the "v" substituted for the "wh," (now used by them,) should the Church Missionary Committee of Missionaries adopt it:--4. that the Rev. R. Maunsell has informed me, that he intends using it for the future in his "Grammar," now in course of printing at Auckland, and which will doubtless (if not already in use) be adopted by the Government; --and, 5. that from a similarity (though distant) in the Maori sound, for which a character is now sought, to the sound of the English "v," future Missionaries and new-comers generally will be assisted in reading in the pronunciation of the same.
"In conclusion, and with the utmost deference, I beg permission to express my hope, that in the consideration of the matter in question, each Member of Committee will ingenuously dismiss from his mind those prejudices which, too often, unfortunately, stick as closely to the skirts of abstract literary and scientific questions as to other matters whether social or political.
I am &c
(signed) WILLIAM COLENSO,
Superintendent CM. Press."
"Mr. R. Davis,
Secretary, Northern District Committee."
Harding, Printer, Napier.