CHAPTER IX, PROVINCIAL LEGISLATURES.
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WHEN Sir George Grey left New Zealand the government devolved upon Colonel Wynyard of the 58th regiment (the senior military officer) under the title of the officer administering the government. The departure of their old friend aroused a superstitious regret amongst the Maoris when they found that it was followed by an outbreak of measles which, introduced at Auckland by an American vessel, decimated tribe after tribe in the interior. It was deemed advisable that the Provincial Legislatures should meet before the summoning of the General Assembly. Mr. Weld and some others discovered afterwards that a contrary course should have been adopted, and that the powers of the Provincial Councils should have been defined by the General Legislature before the local parliaments were permitted to plume themselves upon their new honours. Sir George Grey, however, had called the Provincial Councils into existence, and on Colonel Wynyard fell the task of dealing with the larger body. The electors in the provinces chose their leading men as Superintendents. Mr. J. E. Fitzgerald was selected at Canterbury, Mr. E. W. Stafford at Nelson, Colonel Wynyard at Auckland, Dr. Featherston at Wellington, Mr. Brown at Taranaki, and Captain Cargill at Otago.
Mr. Swainson declared (1859) that the Provincial Legislatures ought to have been confined to mere municipal matters, and should have been made more dependent on the General Legislature. They plunged into what he called "a mischievous multiplicity and diversity of legislation." In three years they passed more than two hundred Ordinances. Mr. Swainson was
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FIRST GENERAL ASSEMBLY CONVENED.
the chief adviser of the Acting Governor, and was not slow to put words in his mouth commending the General Assembly to enlarge and solidify the powers of the general government.
By a proclamation dated 18th January, 1854, the General Assembly was convened for despatch of business at Auckland on the Queen's Birthday, 24th May. Mr. Charles Clifford was made Speaker of the elected House. Mr. J. E. Fitzgerald and Mr. David Monro were put forward by their brother members as mover and seconder of the formal but friendly address in reply to the Governor's speech, which had pointed out the dangers which might spring from the Provincial Legislatures, the possible incoherence if not antagonism in their legislation, the duty which lay upon the General Assembly to determine whether New Zealand should "become one great nation or a collection of insignificant, divided, and powerless petty states."
Mr. Weld and his friends complained that Mr. Swainson did nothing to remedy the dreaded evils. They professed the same apprehensions. But the Assembly burned to exercise their new powers. Their appetite grew by what it fed on. There were also men among them spurred by a noble ambition. The Constitution made no provision for the creation of a responsible ministry. Representatives in the Legislature were to be called into existence, but they had been active in New South Wales in 1843, and as yet responsible government had not been established in Australia. It was to come, but it was to be provided for by special enactment. There had been no preparation for it in New Zealand at the elections. The Royal Letters Patent which made the Executive Council consist of certain functionaries had not been modified. But Gibbon Wakefield sat amongst the representatives. He stirred their minds to demand responsible government; the boast of England, the recent boon to Canada. An address to Colonel Wynyard was carried, expressing a desire for ministerial responsibility without delay. A suggestion that a select committee should be appointed to report upon the subject, found but one supporter, and the senior military officer stood in the novel position of having to solve abstruse political problems. He laid the address before his Executive Councillors with an opinion from his Attorney-General that he might go so far as to add, under existing
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instructions, two or three members of the Assembly to the Executive Council, and that body unanimously advised him to do so. Mr. Swainson's opinion showed, by reference to the Constitution Act and to the Royal Instructions, that the Governor was not enabled to establish "ministerial responsibility in the conduct of legislative and executive proceedings by the Governor." Colonel Wynyard placed in the Executive Council Mr. J. E. Fitzgerald, member for Lyttleton; Mr. F. A. Weld, member for Wairau; and Mr. H. Sewell, member for Christchurch. Mr. Sinclair the Colonial Secretary, and Mr. Shepherd the Treasurer, were willing to resign on receiving fit retiring allowances. Mr. Swainson, Attorney-General, was willing to retire, with or without compensation, if the representative of the Crown should think it advantageous for the public interests. The Legislative Council then deemed it essential that a responsible member of the Government should be chosen from that body, and Wynyard at once (29th June) appointed Mr. F. D. Bell. When Mr. Bell was called away by urgent affairs, Mr. F. H. Bartley, a lawyer, was appointed to the Legislative and Executive Councils. All the newly-appointed councillors undertook without salary to represent the Government in the Legislature, to perform such departmental work as became a concomitant of their legislative duties, and to hold office only so long as they might retain the confidence of the Assembly. Both Houses applauded the arrangement. These proceedings were reported to the Secretary of State for approval.
Such hurried changes produced friction in a machinery not constructed for them. The new men found a want of hearty co-operation on the part of the old, and the representatives began to show uneasy symptoms. Mr.. Fitzgerald and his friends sought to smooth all obstacles by obtaining more power. They thought a military governor would yield to the arguments of civilians. To enable them to conduct the public business they recommended, in writing, that the existing office-holders should resign, and that the Government should be "reconstituted on the ordinary responsible basis." Wynyard laid the document before the Executive Council, and said he was willing to accept the Secretary's resignation on suitable provisions for his retirement, and to appoint a member of Assembly in his room. The
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WYNYARD WILL NOT STRAIN THE CONSTITUTION.
Secretary had been locally appointed, but the Attorney-General and the Treasurer held Crown appointments, and while Wynyard was only temporary administrator of the Government he was not prepared to accept their resignations unless authorized to do so by the Secretary of State. They themselves, though offering to resign if called upon, declined to advise as councillors that such a step should be taken. The ruling passion of duty in the soldier was proof against Mr. Fitzgerald, who, with his colleagues, on the 2nd August, quitted the Executive Council, Wynyard having on the 1st August declined to coerce his legitimate advisers without "being favoured with the views of the Crown." "I am now called upon (he said) to form an entire new form of Government without even a reference to my Sovereign, thus throwing on me during my temporary administration a grave responsibility I am not prepared or disposed to bear." If the Home Government should approve the proposition, not much time would be lost in obtaining its sanction; if it should not approve, it was the more necessary for him to await instructions. The suggestion by the retiring councillors that the Assembly might refuse supplies, Wynyard spoke of in a subsequent message to the two legislative bodies (5th August), but did not allow it to warp him from what he thought his duty. He urged that the establishment of responsible government should be provided for by law. He was ready to consider any such measure seriously and favourably. He also urged that some useful practical measures should be passed. Mr. Sewell read to the House of Representatives a narrative of the transactions which, substantially confirming that of Wynyard, caused him to remark to the Duke of Newcastle that it was shown "how necessary it was to make the stand I did." The Legislative Council (of which Swainson the Attorney-General was Speaker) on the 10th August concurred with what Wynyard had done, and suggested that he should summon to the Executive Council some members of the General Assembly enjoying his confidence, and holding office only while they enjoyed also that of the Assembly.
It was not surprising that when brains were wanted Gibbon Wakefield was applied to. When Fitzgerald abandoned his post, Wynyard wrote: "I (with advice) requested an interview with Mr. E. G. Wakefield . . . that gentleman having
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been originally put forward by 29 out of 30 members in the House of Representatives as their leader in the movement for obtaining the establishment of ministerial responsibility, and having also been its prominent leader in the opposition to the late members of the Executive Council in the Legislature."
Fitzgerald and his friends had a majority in the House of Representatives, and in reply to Wynyard's message of the 5th of August, they commented with asperity on the position which Gibbon Wakefield had been allowed to assume. He had assured the House that he had drawn up his Excellency's message. 1 Such a state of affairs compromised Wynyard, and it would be perilous to the colony if the Queen's representative should act without advice from the Attorney-General. Wynyard rejoiced at being able to assure them, that "throughout the emergency he had enjoyed the unqualified concurrence and support of his constitutional advisers." He begged them (15th August) to consider his former message "with a view of turning the remainder of the already protracted and fruitless session to some good account for the people of New Zealand." On the 16th, Fitzgerald and his friends, who adopted the style "We the Commons of New Zealand," said that, dismissing all that was past, they required "the immediate establishment of the Executive Government on the basis of complete ministerial responsibility."
Wynyard would not abandon his position, but (17th August) would earnestly request the Home Government to aid in establishing ministerial responsibility. He would, after a brief prorogation, assist in maturing a Bill (to be reserved for the Queen's pleasure) to bring about the required object. He transmitted on the same day a second message with a proclamation proroguing the Assembly till the 31st August. The bearer
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STRUGGLES IN GENERAL ASSEMBLY.
stood at the door while the first message was read to the House; and the majority determined to prevent the prorogation message from being received. The reading of the prorogation message was averted until, by irregularly suspending the standing orders, the majority might pass resolutions to stop supplies, and to denounce Gibbon Wakefield. Objecting members were forcibly detained, and when they attempted to escape by a gallery, Mr Sewell thought it not unbecoming for an outgoing Executive Councillor to scramble over a railing and lock the door. Mr. Weld was silent. After a time, Mr. Mackay, a member from Nelson, obtained entrance into the Chamber, and threw a copy of the Governor's proclamation on the table. He was assaulted by Sewell and others for keeping his hat on, in which on the assumption that the House was prorogued he thought himself justified. There was a prospect of a rescue by strangers in the gallery; Mr. Mackay was ejected, and the Speaker at last read the messages. Colonel Wynyard magnanimously abstained from exposing the actors in a scene which made the New Zealand representatives a by-word for a time in Australia.
Two days after the struggle in the House Gibbon Wakefield found his position untenable. An adviser without responsibility, conscious that the Assembly would not subject itself to his guidance, he saw that the Acting Governor shrunk from committing himself to it. A Triton among minnows in one sense, he could unfortunately do nothing unless the minnows would accept him as pilot. He sought Swainson on the 19th August, and reasoned for two hours. He recorded the interview. He described Swainson's "masterly command of the conversation by means of the highest diplomatic ability." Swainson approved of Fabian tactics until events might show in what way the Acting Governor should act. Meanwhile, though to this he did not pledge himself, Colonel Wynyard might govern under the old forms until the Home Government should instruct him. Throughout the long interview each felt that much in his thoughts must remain unspoken. Each watched the other. But Swainson's goal was duty, not ambition, and the light he walked by was not deceitful. It seemed to Wakefield that Swainson had "two distinct policies" in his thoughts. Mr. Weld said afterwards that he had but the one policy of "not committing
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himself." Wakefield at once retired from his anomalous position. Swainson as well as others were relieved from irksome pressure. The doors of the Assembly were closed, but the keys of the Treasury had not been taken from the Government. The Assembly had passed no new law, and the existing law left the Government full power to apply the public revenues to the public service. Thus master of the situation, the Government ascertained that the Assembly, if convened for business on the day to which it had been prorogued, would devote itself to practical legislation and grant supplies.
A final attempt was made to introduce the responsible element so eagerly demanded. Mr. T. S. Forsaith of Auckland, Mr. E. J. Wakefield of Canterbury (Gibbon Wakefield's son), Mr. Travers of Nelson, and Mr. MacAndrew of Otago, were appointed Executive Councillors with the understanding that they would resign if they should "fail to carry with them the support and confidence of the Houses of Assembly, a new Governor be appointed, or any change take place in the Constitution." They were also to identify themselves with the policy of an address to be sent down by Wynyard to the Houses. He proposed to introduce a Bill to establish ministerial responsibility, and to reserve it for the Queen's decision; to deal in like manner with Bills empowering the General Assembly to transfer to the Provincial Legislatures its own powers with regard to waste lands; and to bestow an elective character on the Legislative Council. Other measures were announced, and it was stated that until the fate of the Land Bill should be decided, Wynyard would use his authority in setting apart not less than one-third of the waste lands in each province to encourage bona fide occupation, allowing rebate of passage money to settlers, and giving time for payment, but holding back titles to land "for a reasonable time." The Council, which had comported itself decorously during the session, accepted the address thankfully. The "Commons of New Zealand" no longer threatened to stop supplies if their desire for responsible government should not be gratified, but they carried an amendment on the address which compelled Mr. Forsaith and his friends to retire two days after accepting office. The address, passed by 22 votes against 11, condemned "a mixed Executive" as utterly bad.
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LABOURS OF THE SESSION.
Many members wished to return to their southern homes, and all were willing to vote supplies to the existing Executive Government, trusting that Wynyard and the Home Government would enfranchise them speedily. They promised to devote themselves to work, and kept their promise. They adopted (2nd September) an address to the Queen, praying that the necessary law for establishing responsible Government might be assented to. A fortnight afterwards thirteen Bills had been passed. A Waste Lands Act confirmed existing regulations and enabled Superintendents and Provincial Councils to recommend to the Governor any regulations for sale, letting, disposal, and occupation of Crown lands, proclamation by the Governor being sufficient to give them effect. A provincial Waste Lands Act declared it expedient that in each province there should be local control over waste lands, and provided that, subject to the Constitution Act, it should be lawful for the General Assembly to empower Superintendents and Provincial Councils to make laws to regulate the lands. The administration of revenue from lands was relegated to the Superintendents and Provincial Councils. The Act was not to go into operation until the royal assent should be notified. By a despatch from the Secretary of State, 15th April, 1855, that assent was conveyed. Even the opponents of Gibbon Wakefield admitted that he had taught them parliamentary government. The failures of Fitzgerald and Forsaith did not teach their supporters modesty. They vaunted that no Australian legislature had equalled that of New Zealand in ability; and knew not that it was by the labour of years that Wentworth, the champion of another colony, had wrought out for them and others the constitutional changes which they so strangely abused. Mr. Fitzgerald's principal achievement had been styling himself Prime Minister for little more than two months; Mr. Sewell's title to distinction was a personal assault committed upon a representative member in the hall of deliberation.
A sense of duty to his Queen had preserved Wynyard from disgrace as it has preserved so many English soldiers who make no such high-flown pretensions as were made by the civilians gathered at Auckland in 1854. Swainson was wise enough to keep him from error, and was firm as a rock to duty, though
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ready to sacrifice his personal claims. Mere wisdom indeed the Governor could obtain from Gibbon Wakefield's promptings; but though all admitted that fact, no one proposed that Wakefield should be Minister himself; and an ambiguous position is never held in high regard. Mr. Weld, in an address to the electors of the Wairau (November, 1854), bitterly complained that Gibbon Wakefield had insidiously at first, and afterwards openly, devoted his "great fund of information and his activity and energy" to thwarting the "responsible-government party."
A constitutional question between the two Houses was mooted but not discussed. The Appropriation Bill reached the Council on the 10th September. The Assembly was to be prorogued on the 16th. There was in the Constitution Act no restriction upon the Council as to the right to amend Money Bills, but it was understood that the Assembly would dispute it. The Council, to avert conflict, requested Wynyard to obtain an authoritative decision from England as to its constitutional rights. He applied for it, but the Duke of Newcastle did not answer his despatches. Overtasked by the care of the colonies and the anxieties of the Crimean war, he had handed over the Colonial Office to Sir George Grey, 2 who had in former years been Under-Secretary there. The new Secretary answered in one letter, on the 8th December, six of Wynyard's despatches, which contained the careful opinion of Mr. Swainson on the changes which Wynyard was asked to make. Appealed to by a senior military officer accidentally confronted by constitutional problems, Sir George Grey replied in a manner which proved that reference could not have been made to a more unworthy arbitrator. There was not one word in the Constitution to provide for the establishment of responsible government. Not one word on the subject had been said in debate on the Constitution Act of 1852. Speeches must not be called in to construe a statute, but silence in this case is amply confirmed by the silence of the statute. Responsible government not being contemplated, there was no provision for vacation of seats of placemen, so that their constituents might ratify or condemn
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SECRETARY OF STATE STRAINS THE CONSTITUTION.
their assumption of paid office. Moreover, the duties imposed by the Constitution upon the Governor with regard to Maori affairs were utterly incompatible with responsible government in the full sense of the term. It might have been difficult for the Secretary of State to induce Parliament to alter radically a Constitution so recently framed. Even if the House of Commons should, by want of care or by connivance, sanction changes tending to disorder or breach of faith, it was not probable that Earl Derby, the Rupert of debate, would fail to put lance in rest against any proposals which would remit the Maori race to the harsh injustice of the inheritors of that New Zealand Company which he smote so sorely in 1843, and many of whose former servants were prominent in the colony. The Secretary of State became the cutpurse of the Constitution which he could not hope to mutilate by law. Many of his supporters were tainted with the vice which shrunk abashed from Lord Stanley in 1843. The Ministry was in dire distress. It required votes. Parliament, prorogued in August, had been convened for a special session on the 12th December, 1854. Lord John Russell was at his wits' end, and anxious to flee from a sinking ship. 3 The country rang with complaints against the inefficiency of its rulers, who left an army to die of disease or starve before Sebastopol in a place more like a quagmire than a military camp. On the 8th December, having received Wynyard's despatches on the 5th, and (so far as can be traced) unrestrained by his colleagues (Lord Palmerston, Lord John Russell, Earl Granville, the Duke of Newcastle, the Duke of Argyll, Mr. Gladstone, and Sir William Molesworth)--Sir George Grey penned a despatch which was the first step to the abandonment by the Crown of the duties solemnly undertaken in the treaty of Waitangi and renewed in the Constitution Act of 1852. He paid no heed to Swainson's wise opinion. He took "the earliest opportunity" to state that Her Majesty's Government had "no objection whatever to offer to the establishment of the system known as responsible government in New Zealand." No legis-
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lation would be required. The Imperial Government had no "desire to propose terms or lay down restrictions . . . except that of which the necessity appeared to be fully recognized by the General Assembly, namely, the making provision for certain officers who have accepted offices on the equitable understanding of their permanence." On this understanding there would be "no occasion for further reference to the Home Government," before carrying into effect the proposed changes, and "satisfying the wishes of the community." Rightly indeed did he desire to observe good faith in smaller things, but the weightier matters of the law, judgment, mercy, and faith, he discarded. He said not a word about, the Maoris and their Queen, and his despatch was gloated over by those who had hardly dared to hope that the rapacity of the New Zealand Company's settlers would be glutted by command of the Imperial Government, 4 while Mr. Gladstone was a member of the Cabinet.
Sir George Grey furnished no advice to the soldier-governor as to the introduction of responsible government. It rested on no written law, he said, but on usage in England. Unless there were "local laws" (in New Zealand) "which would be repugnant to the new system, legislation seems uncalled for except for the very simple purpose of securing their pensions to retiring officers." Nevertheless, he was glad that the "ordinary and most satisfactory course of referring the question of responsible government to Her Majesty for complete adjustment had been adopted." He remarked that rendering the Legislative Council elective was beyond the power of the General Assembly, and condemned a plan suggested in Wynyard's message to the Houses on the 31st August, by which if the existing Superintendents and Provincial Councils should not represent the wish of their constituents on the land question, the people should
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DESPATCHES OF SECRETARY OF STATE.
"exercise their right of choosing afresh their representatives." (If the majority should decide in any province against re-election, the transfer of powers over the land was to have been made to the existing Superintendent and Council.) By some strange misprision the Secretary of State called this plan "the foundation of a new federal convention (apart from the General Assembly) which would be an innovation irreconcilable with the existing fundamental law." He appeared to think that the representatives "chosen afresh" would act while their dismissed predecessors were in being. A new Governor would shortly proceed to New Zealand armed with the wisdom of the Colonial Office; and meantime Wynyard was to "act on the present instructions." In reply to the question about the constitutional right of the Legislative Council to alter Money Bills, Sir George Grey gave an opinion in 1855. Although the Constitution Act was silent on the point he thought the English analogy ought to prevail, the reason being that the Upper House was not elected by the people. Before he was superseded Wynyard displayed prudence of which his successor was found incapable. The rapacity of the settlers at Taranaki led the Maoris to form a league against sales of land to Europeans.
When Governor Fitzroy found it necessary to examine and to disallow Spain's award in 1844, he endeavoured vainly to purchase from a chief named Katatore two blocks, viz. the Mangoraka and Waiongona, and afterwards offered to some of the settlers (who had been improperly located by the company on native lands) allotments in other parts of the colony. The settlers, unwilling to believe that they would in the end fail to embroil their country, and wrest the coveted lands from the Maori owners, were loth to depart. Like their unprincipled representatives in London, they hoped that the eye of the law would not scrutinize their position. The treaty of Waitangi was by them no more regarded than by Mr. Somes. The Taranaki creed was as bold and false as his. The pretences of some were accepted as truth by others. In what purports to be a history it has been recorded that "there are strong grounds for believing that the company's claims ought never to have been brought into Mr. Spain's Court." 5
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The company's local agent, Wicksteed, was in such pecuniary straits in 1844 that he was fain to accept terms which he represented to his principal as unjustifiable.
The block allotted by Fitzroy was occupied. Settlers were removed from all native lands except such as might be parted with fairly by their owners. Fitzroy arranged that the native reserves within the European block should be placed at the company's disposal; the Crown right of pre-emption was waived in favour of the company over a circumjacent tract of about 60,000 acres; and the Crown was pledged to advance funds from time to time (on security) to enable the company to buy lands therein. Wicksteed had no money, and Fitzroy accepted for the Government certain boats and stores for which he paid £382. The needy company only paid their own labourers by means of the Government dole. Some of the settlers remained on sufferance at the Puketapu block, but eventually retired, or were driven to the Fitzroy block.
To this state of affairs succeeded Sir George Grey's endeavour to supersede Fitzroy's decision, under Mr. Gladstone's instruction, that it was "hardly probable" that that decision was "just or wise." How Donald McLean prevaricated with Te Rangitake in striving to please Governor Grey, who, in order to please others, prevaricated with justice, and violated the pledges of Fitzroy, has been told already. A letter from McLean in October, 1849, summed up his doings thus:--The existing conveyances were: No. 1, November, 1844, of the Fitzroy block; No. 2, May, 1848, of a block (about 4000 acres bought for less than £200) at Tataraimaka; No. 3, August, 1847, of the Omata block, of 12,000 acres; No. 4, October, 1847, of residents' rights in the Grey block, of 9770 acres; No. 5, April, 1848, of rights of certain absentee Ngatiawas at Wellington and Cook's Straits in the Fitzroy and Grey blocks respectively; No. 6, by certain Puketapu natives, conveying lands occupied by a settler near the Hua; No. 7, November, 1848, of 1500 acres by Puketapu natives.
All these deeds left untouched the coveted lands at the Waitara, the abode of Te Rangitake. The gradual extension of rights of Europeans sharpened their appetites, and led to what McLean called an anti-land-selling league. Archdeacon
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KATATORE SHOOTS RAWIRI.
Hadfield, however, wrote (Oct. 1860) "There is no such league and there never has been any such league." Katatore led the majority, who opposed sales. Rawiri headed the malcontent minority. Maori common rights of course forbade a sale while any dissentient remained; but evil seemed good in the eyes of the settlers. Yielding to the ethics of his neighbours, one Cooper, Land Commissioner of the Taranaki district, in 1854, in spite of Katatore's well-known opposition, accepted an offer made by Rawiri to sell land. The probable result was not more doubtful than the intention to produce it. Rawiri went with an armed force to mark the boundaries. Katatore warned him to stay his hand. To prove his determination he sent Rawiri a gun to defend himself with, saying he would fight to the death rather than part with his rights. Rawiri persisted. Katatore fired one shot in the air, and another into the ground as a final signal that he would fight. If Rawiri's men had then sat down there would have been peace; but they rushed to battle. Katatore shot Paora and Rawiri as they advanced. Six fell, and more were wounded. Katatore drew off his successful men. The settlers, considering that the wounded Rawiri was serving their cause when he fell, removed him to the hospital, but he died after three days. The Maoris prepared for further strife amongst themselves, and the settlers invited the Acting Governor, Wynyard, to "execute the law against the murderers." 6
The narratives of the combatants agreed as to the facts stated, and Wynyard declined to proceed against Katatore in the manner required. Arama Karaka took Rawiri's place, and there was further homicide. The immediate provocation was an act of adultery. The aggrieved husband Ihaia, a friend of Rawiri, directed a young man to shoot the offender, and was obeyed. There was more fighting and loss of life. Strife threatened to become chronic; and, to guard the settlers, Wynyard sent troops and guns to Taranaki. The pah of Ihaia was captured, and the destruction of his friends was only averted by the arrival of Arama Karaka, and by friendly settlers who supplied him with ammunition. Thus early did the settlers make common cause with Ihaia and his friends, through
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whose agency they were to bring about the great war of 1860, and the greater war, its resultant, in 1863. 7
Wynyard visited Taranaki, and strove to make peace. He reported that there were several causes of quarrel: Rawiri's death at the hand of Katatore, the enemy of land-selling; the seduction of Ihaia's wife; the killing of the seducer, and insults offered by Ihaia to the bodies of men slain in fight. Ihaia had disinterred and fired shots at the dead. Arama Karaka plainly told Wynyard that he would persevere in fighting, and that as the quarrels had nothing to do with Europeans, they should be directed not to interfere. Wynyard wrote that the feud "must be watched with the connection of the contending tribes extends far north and south, and may, if neglected, sooner or later lead to a state of things such as Sir G. Grey prognosticated when applying for pensioners to be located" at Taranaki. For himself he accepted the neutral position marked out by the Maoris. He wrote, however, to Te Rangitake, urging him to prevent molestation of the English. The chief responded: "Yes, our father, we will guard against all evil to the Pakeha ... I will go into the midst of them, and the evil shall fall on me." But Te Rangitake was to discover that amongst those whom he was prepared to protect there were intriguers against himself.
When Major Nugent, 58th Regiment, arrived at Taranaki with a detachment in August, 1855, the presence of a military force made writers in a Taranaki newspaper suggest that Te Rangitake should be driven from the Waitara. A Wesleyan missionary, Mr. Turton, sympathized with Rawiri's friends who were Wesleyans. Te Rangitake, as a member of the Church of England, was deemed a friend of the Bishop. Their chief pastors were united in preaching peace. The Waitara natives being disturbed by reports in August that the troops were about to attack them, Major Nugent went to the Waitara to disabuse their minds. He reported that the presence of the Bishop "had considerable influence in reassuring the natives." One of the
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MAJOR NUGENT AT WAITARA.
chiefs stated the rumours they had heard, and "Te Rangitake, the principal chief of the Waitara, spoke" thus: "A report was brought to us that the soldiers were about to capture myself and Katatore by lying in ambush for us. We began to be afraid, and decided to build a pah in the bush. I thought the Governor's letters were very kind. Why does he deceive me in this way? Does he want to seize me like Rauparaha, and enslave my children? If the Governor wishes to commence a war with us, he should do it honourably, and fight us by day and by night, that it may be a battle, and not murder." . . . He was friendly to the Pakehas still, and would protect them; but if they tried to shed his blood he would stand in his own defence.... "The thoughts of the Superintendent and Provincial Council are bad towards us. It is the land; but they will not have it while this feud lasts. That subject must be discussed quietly when the Puketapus have settled their matter. At present no land will be sold. Bishop, when you go back to Auckland give my love to the Governor. Tell him that I will not deceive him. . . ." The chief had reason for suspicion. The Superintendent and Council at Taranaki were beseeching the Government (May, 1855) to send troops thither. They declared that the predominance of the Maori, which had stunted "the growth, was threatening the existence, of the settlement." "The land question was the real basis of the native parties." Rawiri and his followers were about to cut the boundary line of land he was offering "to Government, with the sanction of the resident Land Purchase Commissioner, when he was shot by Katatore, who claimed an interest in the land and opposed the sale." . . . "Troops were necessary for the personal safety of the settlers." When Wynyard brought before the General Assembly the need of military protection at Taranaki, the House of Representatives declined to appropriate money even for the erection of barracks, because "all power of exercising constitutional control over the Executive of Government has not yet been conceded to the Legislature." Under these circumstances Wynyard applied to the military authorities, "in order that the charges already incurred might be as soon as possible transferred from the estimates of the colony."
Bishop Selwyn's presence was occasioned by a special request
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of the Acting Governor, that influence might be exerted to stay bloodshed. Prompt as of old, the Bishop, with Archdeacon Abraham, and a Maori clergyman, Rota Waitoa, travelled overland on foot. The Archdeacon described their reception. "Te Rangitake's fine handsome face, and iron-grey hair, and his giant form of six feet three inches, with breadth in proportion, certainly gave one the idea of a warrior chieftain." 8 At daylight he paid salutations at the Bishop's tent, and breakfasted with him. The Bishop proceeded afterwards to Katatore's pah, where about a hundred men sat down to hear the visitor. Katatore, a small "cunning-looking" man, told his story. When he described the shooting of Rawiri, the Bishop interjected, "So, then, you killed an unarmed man 9 in cold blood for the matter of land?" --"Yes." "Then you repeated the act of Cain towards Abel, and, in the sight of God and man, are a murderer." Katatore started up in wrath, but the Bishop repeated his words, and Katatore, muttering ominously, left the assemblage which appeared more attentive to the Bishop than to him. This was on the 15th August. Rangitake "did not wish to take part in the quarrel between Katatore and Arama Karaka," but the latter had lately encroached and aroused suspicions as to his intention to "sell land to the Pakeha." On the 31st, at a meeting where Major Nugent was present, an oration by the Bishop concluded by a quotation from a Maori poet seemed to win the Maori hearts, which had been already pacified by a letter from the Acting Governor to Te Rangitake, promising that the Government would not interfere in intertribal quarrels.
The Taranaki settlers were furious against the Bishop. A newspaper (22nd August) railed at him in these terms: "Bishop Selwyn is again lending his blighting influence to New Zealand --has again taken the murderer by the hand, as he did the perpetrators of the Wairau massacre--a murderer who is without the excuse of those at Wairau, viz. that of being first fired upon. ... It is reserved for the Bishop to use his undoubted
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BISHOP SELWYN AT TARANAKI.
influence to shield notorious criminals from justice, when those criminals appeal to his sympathies through the medium of a dark skin."
Such language was acceptable to readers amongst whom the Atkinsons and the Richmonds were about to become notorious by plunging the colony into unjust war. The Bishop did not answer these attacks directly; but, in a pastoral letter to the members of his church at Taranaki, he uttered solemn warnings. He had not spoken of the murder of Rawiri except "to condemn it in the strongest language, even in the presence of the murderer.... It is strange indeed that your advisers in the local newspapers, who dwell so much upon the sixth commandment, should forget altogether that the same law has said, 'Thou shalt not covet.' They may disguise it to their own consciences, but it is my duty, as a minister of the law and of the gospel, to lift up my voice against the publication of opinions which would lead on to the sin of murder as the direct consequence of the sin of covetousness. I offer to my countrymen my best assistance and influence with the native people in all their just and lawful desires, but I have no fellowship with covetousness, which Ahab found to be the first step to blood-guiltiness. . . I cannot remain silent while opinions are being expressed, which if you prove to be the stronger would destroy the New Zealanders, or if you be found the weaker, would destroy yourselves."
The Maoris at Taranaki had sold 30,000 acres at tenpence an acre. "Nothing is more easy than to extinguish the native title; nothing will be more difficult than to extinguish a native war." Te Rangitake, he was confident, had no ill-will to the English, and ought not to be "forced into a position of hostility by their suspicions and their threats." He would urge the Maoris to sell land amicably, but he would resist by all lawful means every attempt to carry out any other interpretation of the treaty of Waitangi than that in which it was explained to the natives by Governor Hobson, and understood and accepted by them." The Bishop's words were good; but so long as the Bishop might assert the claims of justice, so long would he have enemies among men quartered upon Taranaki by the frauds of the New Zealand Company and the folly of Lord John Russell,
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in defiance of the sagacity and resolution of Gipps, and the honesty of Hobson.
A new Governor, Colonel Gore Browne, assumed office in September, 1855, and he visited Taranaki forthwith: it is convenient to record the opinion he then formed. He had previously written from Auckland that the colony would sustain great loss if Major Nugent should be withdrawn with departing troops. That officer knew the Maori language, and to his conduct and discretion was due the satisfactory condition of Taranaki. Colonel Browne, like his predecessors, promptly pledged himself to act honourably towards the Maoris. He wrote (20th September, 1855) to Lord John Russell: "Different despatches will have satisfied your Lordship that I have given the strongest assurances of protection in all their rights to the Maoris, and that I have declared my determination neither to interfere in native questions, nor to permit the purchase of lands until the owners are united in desiring to sell them, and have agreed upon the terms." He speedily visited Taranaki, where he held a levee in October, 1855, but neither Katatore nor Te Rangitake attended it. The native feud still raged, and neither of them cared to ask for safe-conduct to the levee, which was, nevertheless, well attended by Maoris and settlers. The Governor directed that militia should be embodied, but at the earnest request of the Provincial Superintendent and of the Land Commissioner did not reduce the military garrison. He told the Secretary of State that the warfare between the followers of Katatore and his opponents had been injudiciously aggravated by a Wesleyan missionary, a friend of Rawiri. He also "disapproved of the conduct of Cooper, the sub-commissioner, in commencing a survey of land before he was assured that all who had even a disputed title desired it should be sold." It would have been well if he had continued in such a frame of mind. A careful letter from the Rev. J. F. Riemenschreider, a Wesleyan missionary, ought to have warned him of the thorns on which he stood. It proves that even in 1855 the Ngatiruanui and Taranaki tribes sagaciously forecast the course of events; and it is melancholy to think that their suspicions were confirmed by the conduct of Colonel Browne. Mr. Riemenschreider apprised him that the Taranaki natives as well as Te Rangitake's own
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COLONEL BROWNE AT TARANAKI.
tribe, the Ngatiawa, looked upon that chief as "the real and true chief of Waitara." Neither the efforts of Mr. Riemenschreider, nor the joint labours of Major Nugent and Donald McLean, could allay the feud between Katatore and Arama Karaka. Old Waka Nene, the Ngapuhi chief, lent his advice in vain. He suggested that Katatore should cede land to the relatives of Rawiri as reparation for his loss. Old E Puni, from Wellington, who was also on the spot, failed similarly; although, as a powerful Ngatiawa chief, he might have been expected to exert some influence with Rangitake and his friends. The Wanganui chief, Hori Kingi te Anaua, wrote that his people would take no part in any quarrel at Taranaki. He was ever friendly to the English. Yet no dissuasions with the hostile chiefs prevailed. Colonel Browne wrote in November, 1855: "The native feud appears to me to be much in the same condition as before."
Mr. Turton, the Wesleyan missionary (Browne wrote), had, by letters in newspapers and privately, not only "revived the old suspicion that the Europeans would not rest till they had slain and taken possession of that which the Maoris liken to Naboth's vineyard,"--but, emulous of an affray like that at the Wairau, had endeavoured to "bring Rawiri's widow to swear to the murder (of her husband) before the resident magistrate. This was prevented by Major Nugent, who inquired whether the magistrate intended issuing a warrant for the murderer, and if so, whether he had the means of enforcing it, adding that his own instructions forbade him acting in any manner not necessary for the maintenance of peace and tranquillity within the European part of the province."
Thus warned, Colonel Browne ought to have had no doubt about his duty. The significance of the opposition to land-sales was undeniable, and adherents in distant places had joined it. Only by prudent avoidance of provocation could it be hoped that it would die a natural death. To play into the hands of those whose evil designs he understood in 1855 would have seemed to be the one course which could not be expected from Colonel Browne. Yet it was the course into which in less than four years he was seduced, when he had by his side as native minister, the man whom in 1855 he found clerk to the Provincial Council, and Provincial Attorney at
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Taranaki,--Mr. Christopher William Richmond. Eventually, in 1856, the native feud died out; but it was believed that sixty Maoris had been killed, and many more wounded, before a truce was made by Maori persuasion. The warfare incommoded, but did not include, the settlers. For months the Bell block and the Puketapu district were disturbed by bands of Maoris going gaily to shoot their enemies morning after morning. Bands of the Ngatiruanui, aided by Katatore and patronized by Te Rangitake, annoyed Arama Karaka, Ihaia, and their friends; and though no Englishmen were injured, skirmishes took place near their homesteads. It was a relief to all when the land had rest in 1856. The military officer in charge, the Governor, and Colonel Wynyard reported that the peace was definitive, and Mr. Labouchere at the Colonial Office congratulated Colonel Browne on the prudent measures adopted by the civil and military authorities, and on their satisfactory result. 10
It is time to recur to the general condition of the colony. An earthquake early in 1855 added terrors to the difficulties of colonization. Felt even at Auckland and Otago, it was, like its predecessor of 1848, most severe on each side of Cook's Straits. White Island had a bad pre-eminence; a fresh cone rose from Tongariro; and some settlers doubted whether colonization was desirable at the risks surrounding it in New Zealand. But crowds cannot yield to impulses which require months to ripen them into action. The sale of landed property, the gathering of household chattels, the disruption of existing ties, are always painful, and to find purchasers would have been almost impossible if the necessity to sell were felt to arise from the dangers of residence. Wynyard summoned the General Assembly in August, 1855, but only the members from Auckland and Taranaki attended in strength. Two from Nelson, two from Wellington, and the notable Mr. Sewell from Canterbury, represented their constituents, and heard Wynyard declare that the Home Government offered no objection to the responsible government so hotly pursued in 1854. Pensions were to be provided for the Colonial Secretary, the Attorney-General and the Treasurer, but Downing Street dispensed with legislation to introduce responsible government, and in anticipation of
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GENERAL ASSEMBLY IN 1865.
passing his estimates and a Pension Bill, Wynyard made known his intention to dissolve the elected House, so that from their successors, chosen for the purpose, a responsible ministry might be created. The members declined to advise on the disturbed state of Taranaki, pleading that constitutional control had not yet been conceded to them. It may seem strange that they selected Mr. Sewell as their leader, but it is by no means strange that under his guidance they declined to pass a Pensions Bill, on the ground that it was improper to pay a price before receiving what they wanted to buy. They passed only three Bills besides the Appropriation Bill, and the new Governor, Colonel Thomas Gore Browne, a soldier of the campaign in Afghanistan in 1842, arrived in September, in time to give the royal assent to the Bills and to dissolve the House on the 15th September, announcing that he, influenced like his predecessor, intended to govern through responsible advisers. He would also maintain inviolate the right of the Maoris to their land. He told the Secretary of State that a dissolution was recommended by his advisers as "almost imperative in consequence of the number of seats vacated--fifteen." It was inconvenient for colonists to sail from southern homes to Auckland, and legislation was only possible by friendly compromise, for of the remaining members it was only necessary for a few to quit the Chamber in order to destroy a quorum. The Governor had interviews with Maori chiefs, and the aged Waka Nene told him that they wished New Zealand to remain under English laws." These were my words to the first Governor, and they continue unchanged up to the present time." 11 Colonel Browne reported that the Maoris did not view the General Assembly very favourably, partly because they did not understand its powers, and partly because they believed it to be less scrupulous than the Queen's representative in obtaining land. He required more military force. Wynyard, as commander of the troops, agreed with him. At least 1600
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soldiers were wanted, and a man-of-war must be attendant on the coast. After reporting his opinion, the Governor made a tour through the islands, and found signs of prosperity from the Bay of Islands to Otago. The general revenue was elastic; that derived from land sales was steady. Although the exceptionally large receipts in 1854, arising from Governor Grey's recent land regulations, were not maintained, there was evidently an increasing average demand.
On the 15th of April the Governor convened the General Assembly at Auckland. Some former members were not there. Gibbon Wakefield, being ill, was absent. The same Speaker was chosen (Clifford). Swainson being absent on leave, the obstacle to which Mr. Weld and his friends attributed their defeat in 1854 was removed. The Governor entrusted Mr. Sewell with the formation of a ministry. Mr. Fitzgerald and Mr. Weld were not at Auckland. Mr. Sewell associated with himself Messrs. P. Whitaker, F. D. Bell, and H. J. Tancred. They were formally to accept office on the passing of a Bill granting pensions to the former officials, Sinclair, Swainson, and Shepherd. On imperial subjects, including relations with the Maori race, the Governor was to hear his advisers; reserving power to act on his own opinions pending a reference to England. On all matters under control of the Assembly he would be guided by advice, whether agreeing with it or not. These terms, with certain interpretations, were agreed to. Mr. Sewell explained the position to the House, approving the reservation of Maori questions, because they involved peace or war. The Pensions Bill was vigorously debated. It was desired to limit the pensions to half the amount of the salaries, but the Governor announced that he would only give the royal assent if two-thirds of the salaries were settled as pensions. A remnant of the former opposition murmured that charges for malpractice as to land regulations and defalcation could be established against the retiring officials. The Governor declared, that if furnished with proof, he would at once recommend to the Secretary of State a summary dismissal without pension for an offender. Committees, after careful inquiry, entirely exonerated the several officers. The Pensions Bill was assented to on the 7th May, and on the same day Mr. Sewell became Colonial
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THE COMPACT OF 1856.
Secretary; Mr. F. Whitaker, Attorney-General; and Mr. F. D. Bell, Colonial Treasurer.
On the threshold of office the new minister met a difficulty which was to distract the colony for a generation. He was called a Centralist, or an advocate of united government. He was opposed by Provincialists, or champions of provincial liberties, amongst whom Dr. Featherston, the Provincial Superintendent of Wellington, was conspicuous. After an adverse vote, carried by Dr. Campbell of Auckland, early in May, Mr. Sewell tendered his resignation; and Dr. Campbell and Dr. Featherston, successively applied to by the Governor, declined to take office. Mr. Sewell was then encountered by Mr. Fox, who, after his unsuccessful mission to England, was ill-pleased to see Mr. F. D. Bell promoted to the office of Treasurer. Mr. Bell's success in disproving Mr. Fox's charges was undoubted. Mr. Fox based his antagonism on public grounds. He carried resolutions (14th May), long celebrated as "the compact of 1856."
Each province was to retain not less than two-thirds of its net Customs revenues, and while so retaining them, should hand to the Central Treasury only half-a-crown for each acre of land sold within it. The control of the General Assembly over provincial legislation was neither to be "extended nor limited." Mr. Sewell, after vainly opposing these and other propositions as usurpations by the provinces of the powers of the general government, resigned upon a vote of want of confidence carried by Mr. Fox, who mounted fairly into the saddle of responsibility on the 20th May, 1856, as Attorney-General. He was also Premier, and intended after a short session to prorogue, in order to mature his measures for the session of 1857. His associates were Messrs. Hall, Brown, and Daldy in one House, and Mr. Richardson in the other. But the House gave him short shrift. 12 Mr. Stafford moved a vote of want of confidence. Fresh members had appeared on the scene after Mr. Fox's resolutions defeated Mr. Sewell, and though only in a minority of one he was outvoted at once. The resolutions which he had carried
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before taking office were not destined to disappear with his fall. At last Governor Browne procured a Ministry, formed by Mr. E. W. Stafford, Superintendent at Nelson; Mr. Whitaker was Attorney-General, Mr. C. W. Richmond was Colonial Secretary. Mr. Stafford became an Executive Councillor, but did not accept an office of profit until the following November. The three members who held offices of profit were practising lawyers. Mr. Sewell became Treasurer, and the Ministry proposed through him a Loan Bill. Dr. Featherston vainly resisted the scheme by moving that the land fund ought to contribute to the general government, and that the fortunes of the provinces themselves ought not to depend on a revenue so uncertain as that derived from land. He was defeated by 24 votes against 10. By the Government scheme £500,000 were to be raised as a charge on the general revenue of New Zealand, to be applied as the Lords of the Treasury might direct. The objects were--with £200,000 to discharge the debt due to the New Zealand Company, and repay such sums as the province of Auckland had paid towards its liquidation; with £120,000 to pay any public debt due on the 1st January, 1858; and with £180,000 to extinguish the rights of the Maoris in the Northern Island. The lands were to be provincially managed, and in the spirit of "the compact of 1856," the land fund was to be the provincial revenue.
There is something captivating to young legislators in contracting debt, and the Loan Bill (assented to on the 7th August) had the reputation of securing Mr. Stafford and Mr. Sewell in their positions. Thirty-five other Acts were passed. A Waste Lands Act was the most important. Superintendents and Provincial Councils might make land laws, the Bills being "reserved for the signification of the Governor's pleasure thereon." The Governor might, nevertheless, fulfil all promises he had made, and could except from sale land required for military defence, roads, or public buildings; and no land acquired from the Maoris after the passing of the Act could be offered for sale till the Governor had proclaimed that the native title was extinguished. A Native Reserves Bill vexed the Governor and his advisers. As introduced it preserved his position of freedom. A clause (18th) added subsequently, provided that every act
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NATIVE RESERVES BILL.
done under it should be "only with the advice and consent of the Executive Council." Either the insidious astuteness of the Attorney-General and Mr. Richmond thus early developed itself in weaving nets to entrap the Governor and make him a co-agent in defrauding the Maoris, or the possession of power had warped the minds of the Ministry, and they cast behind them their pledge that on native questions the Governor should be free from their control. Reluctantly the Governor consented to the addition of the clause. When it reached the Legislative Council it was seen to be in danger. Major Richmond, who had been Superintendent of New Munster, was in the Council. He and three others protested against the passing of the Bill. They forwarded their protest to the Governor with an address, declaring that they viewed with apprehension the future relations with the Maoris, "seeing that the first act of legislation presented to us upon native affairs is, in our opinion, a direct violation of the arrangement made with your Excellency and your responsible advisers upon your granting responsible government; in contravention of the Royal Instructions, and an infringement of the Constitution Act." They pointed out that the obnoxious clause had only been carried in the Council by the Speaker's casting vote. The Ministry, through the Colonial Secretary, Mr. C. W. Richmond, adhered to their position. They averred, illogically, that "they had no desire to trespass on the rule" respecting native affairs. The House of Representatives was unanimous, and it was improper for a minority in the Council to arrest the measure. The Ministry "strongly advised" the Governor to "assent to the Bill, and not to reserve it for the signification of Her Majesty's pleasure."
In a weak moment, of which Sir George Grey might have been found incapable, and from which Wynyard's sense of duty had preserved him, the Governor offered to assent to the Bill, on the understanding that the protest, address, and the minute of his advisers should be forwarded to England with the Bill. The offer was "respectfully accepted" by his advisers. Mr. Labouchere, the Secretary of State, vied with the Governor in ineptitude. He said that the clause was certainly opposed to the principle on which it had been agreed that native affairs should be managed; but in the hope that the Governor would
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be able to make opposite principles harmonize, the assent given by the Governor would not be over-ruled. The danger invited by such a ruling was swift to come. The body which has made one unlawful stride to power will make another, not the less surely because in the first instance it protested that it "had no desire to trespass" on the rule of right. Mr. Swainson, in a work published in 1859, uttered forebodings as to the impolicy and injustice of leaving the Governor responsible for native affairs without providing him with means. He hinted that it might have been well to withhold responsible government, at least for a time. Another New Zealand legislator (Mr. Cracroft Wilson) bluntly declared that it was a mad thing to confer such a government on a country, where all the landed gentry were savages, and most of them cannibals. A friend of Mr. Stafford's government boasted that the Native Reserves Act was an important step to "extricate the Maoris from tribal barbarism." It was, in fact, an impeachment of their guaranteed rights, and well known so to be by those who framed it. A Land Claims Settlement Act was passed after the subject had been reported upon by a select committee of the representatives. Without comment upon its principles, Colonel Browne sent the Act and the report of the committee to England, and the Secretary of State was as succinct in announcing the Queen's approval. Land Claims Commissioners were to be empowered to deal with all claims arising before or after the establishment of British sovereignty in the colony, under the limitation that any claim not notified to the Government before the passing of the Act should not be entertained. Claims already made were to lapse if not brought under the Act within two years. The undecided residues of old land claims (anterior to 1840), of pre-emption waiver claims, ten shillings an acre proclamation claims, and penny an acre claims, were to be finally settled by a Commission appointed by the Governor, which was to have the powers of a Court of Record, and to sit in public.
The remaining Acts of the session need not be expatiated upon. Nevertheless, as indications of the points which the first responsible Ministry thought it necessary to deal with, the subjects deserve brief mention. Much time was consumed in discussing the livery to be worn by the doorkeepers in the
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NATIVE OFFENDERS BILL.
Chamber. Privilege of Parliament; increase of the Governor's salary; winding up of the New Zealand Bank of Issue; adoption of certain English statutes relating to evidence and to the law of debtor and creditor; Savings' Bank and Trust Acts; extension of powers of Provincial Councils, so that they might deal with cases not exceeding £20, and with penalties of £100 or six months imprisonment; Marriage; Customs laws; Supreme Court Procedure; division into counties; Friendly Societies; local postage; giving Scotch law practitioners power to practise in New Zealand Courts; giving validity to certain provincial laws, land orders and scrip, were the staple of the session's labours. The last Act defined the extent to which land orders issued in old time were to be available. An order of the defunct New Zealand Company for fifty acres at New Plymouth, gave priority to the holder over lands declared open for purchase, to extent of one acre of town, twelve and a half of suburban, and fifty acres of rural land, at the holder's option. There were undisposed of, in Auckland, 219,000 acres; Wellington, 3,000,000 acres; Taranaki (New Plymouth), 25,000 acres; Nelson, 14,000,000 acres; Canterbury, 9,000,000 acres; Otago, 15,000,000 acres.
The second reading of a Native Offenders Bill, introduced by Mr. Stafford in July, was carried by 13 votes against 7. It was referred, on the motion of Mr. Sewell, to a select committee, which reported that the unusual powers embodied in the Bill were not demanded by past events, but that in a modified form it might be expedient to arm the Governor with power, with the advice of his Council, to test the proposed plan of proscribing districts in which native offenders might be harboured. Donald McLean and many Maori chiefs gave evidence before the committee. Mr. Fenton, then Native Secretary, and Major Nugent, approved of the Bill, but the latter saw danger of retaliation by the natives. The law should be temporary, and only put in force "after mature consideration." One witness thought the Bill "very objectionable." It enabled the Governor not only to proscribe districts, but to seize vessels and property. It would cause open revolt, which would combine "friends, relations, and allies." When Mr. Sewell moved the committal of the Bill, Mr. Fox
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endeavoured to postpone it for six months. Mr. Fox did not succeed, but eventually the Bill was dropped. Soon afterwards resolutions were carried which recommended that during the recess the Ministry should devise schemes for the government of the Maoris, and that all departments should be under the control of responsible Ministers, subject to the accepted rule that the Governor had the option of not acting on advice tendered upon Maori affairs. It would seem that the Governor had qualms with regard to native affairs when sanctioning the 18th clause of the Natives Reserves Bill. Within a week he issued circulars (31st July, 1856) to Colonel Wynyard, Major Richmond, Major Nugent (58th Regiment); Mr. Busby, the first British Resident; Baron de Thierry; to Mr. F. E. Maning; 13 to other old settlers; to the Bishop of New Zealand; to missionaries, many of whom had been on the spot more than twenty years; and to Mr. Donald McLean. He wished to quote their opinions to the Secretary of State. 1. Could the management of native affairs be entrusted to responsible advisers liable to be changed on political grounds; the Governor reserving a veto, and a recommendation in reference to expenditure? 2. "Would any ill effect result from the participated responsibility involved in such a change in the system of administering native affairs?" 3. Ought the entire management to be vested in the Queen's representative? Colonel Wynyard, Major Richmond, Major Nugent, Busby, Clarke (the late Chief Protector), Baron de Thierry, and others, were emphatic in urging that the Governor should retain control. The Bishop of New Zealand; missionaries, whether of the Church of England or Wesleyan; the Roman Catholic Bishop of Auckland, gave the same advice. The Pakeha Maori, Mr. Maning, was distinct and positive in like manner; so was Mr. Donald McLean. Even Mr. Turton, the friend of Ihaia, was opposed to the project of weakening the Governor's hands. There were only two notes of approval, qualified by requirements that the natives must first be officially informed of their constitutional rights and become electors, and that the colonial exchequer should defray military expenditure if the troops should be employed against the Maoris. There was virtual unanimity against change.
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CONTROL OF NATIVE AFFAIRS.
But Mr. Stafford and his colleagues were not idle. The wily Whitaker and the pervicacious Richmond worked by sap rather than by assault. On the 11th August the representatives resolved that, not seeking at present to disturb the existing "relations between the Governor and his advisers as to the management of native affairs (pending reference to the Home Government), "it would greatly conduce to peace and good government" if all departments were placed under control of the Governor's advisers, subject to the arrangement that the Governor on receiving advice might adhere to his own opinion till that of the Secretary of State might be received. When the session closed, the Ministry drew up a minute embodying the meaning of the resolution. They needed Imperial forces to support them in the quarrel they were about to provoke: and assuming that the maintenance of force by the Imperial Government was indefensible, they recognized that England should have a paramount authority in direction of native affairs. It was agreed that the Chief Commissioner for land purchases, Donald McLean, should become Native Secretary, should submit the business of the department to one of the Ministers; should be removable only with the Governor's sanction, and should have access to the Governor, with whom was to rest the final decision. It was not likely that the Maoris would remain ignorant of these arrangements. The chiefs, who were alert with regard to the House of Commons' report in 1844, watched attentively the machinations at their door.
The Governor relied much upon Donald McLean, who assured him that no doubt the Ministry would make provision for "carrying out measures for the amelioration of the native race." But the Ministry thwarted rather than assisted. The Civil List in the Constitution guaranteed an annual provision of £7000 for native education. Mr. Fox during his short term of office wished to remove £5900 of this charge from the Civil List, but the Governor would not consent. Of the Customs revenue of £112,000 not less than £51,000 were estimated in 1856 by Mr. Fox as contributed by the Maoris, and the sale of lands by the Government yielded nearly £50,000 more. Without sanction from England the Governor would not rob the Maoris of the provision for education. Other sums were voted, but un-
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graciously. Messages from the Governor elicited no satisfactory reply from the representatives at a later date. They averred that they desired to respond with proper liberality; but recollecting that the Civil List provision for the Maoris "had been without the sanction of the House, and contrary to its wishes appropriated to objects over which it had no control," and, larding their refusal with several sorts of reasons, they declared that the House would "fail in its duty to the country were it in the present state of the finances to place a further sum for native services upon the estimates for the year." If they reasoned thus when panting for an Imperial guarantee for their loan,--when Mr. Sewell was about to proceed to England to urge their claims,--it was manifest that under favouring circumstances they would be transformed from beggars to dictators. They knew not at the time the views of the Home Government on control of native affairs. Mr. Labouchere, by a despatch dated 10th December, 1856, announced it thus: "Notwithstanding all the respect due to the principle of responsible government, the management of native affairs should remain for the present mainly in the hands of a Governor responsible for it to the Crown."
While straining every nerve to bring the Maoris under the yoke of an elected House, there were not wanting proofs that leading colonists were jealous of any attempt on the part of the Maoris to share in the elections. The Superintendent at Wellington (Dr. Featherston) reported in November, 1856, that thirty-five Maoris were on the electoral roll, and that it was "solely owing to the prudence of the bearer" (of his letter) that forty-nine native claimants at Otaki had not been registered. The attempt of the Maoris (or, as was insinuated, of certain missionaries) to influence elections had excited considerable indignation throughout the province, and would occasion serious disturbance "if the plot be not at once crushed by the Government." He suggested that the Government should so alter the electoral regulations as to defeat the scheme. It is due to Mr. Stafford to state that he deprecated any interference with registration of natives duly qualified to be electors. Suspicion engendered fear, and an attack on Auckland was dreaded. In September the matter was seriously taken up by the Govern-
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MAORI KING MOVEMENT.
ment. Though the rumour was unfounded, the unguarded state of Auckland was admitted by all, and it was resolved that militia should be organized and 500 rifles should be imported, with 100,000 rounds of ammunition.
The Maoris were always informed as to passing events. Governor Browne, in November, visited the Rev. Robert Maunsell's school, seven miles from the mouth of the Waikato river. It was supported by a grant from the Civil List, and ninety-seven scholars of various ages were in the Governor's opinion well taught. Several chiefs told him that the Government ought not to withdraw aid from the school. They expressed unalterable attachment to the Queen, and to Browne as her representative; but "declared in the most emphatic terms that they would never recognize the Assembly in any way, speaking of it in contemptuous terms, and calling it the English Committee."
A careful report drawn up by Dr. A. S. Thomson (58th Regiment), was transmitted by the Governor to the Secretary of State. Dr. Thomson plainly declared that in mapping out the electoral districts the Maoris had been ignored; that, unrepresented themselves, they were taxed by a Government responsible to the settlers; that Browne's reservation of native control would prove a fiction--for power would follow the purse, and injustice would be done. Either there should be Maori members in the General Assembly, or the Governor ought to have £25,000 at his disposal for Maori purposes. Dr. Thomson's ability was acknowledged, but he must have been too wise to expect that his counsel would be taken. He was a true prophet as to Governor Browne's weakness. He concluded his paper by saying that the amalgamation of the European and Maori races made it daily more probable that Gibbon's hope might be realized, and that, as a Hume had sprung from the northern savages of Caledonia, so a Maori might be the ancestor of an historian in the south. It was not surprising that suspicious Maori minds deemed self-defence necessary. Immediately after Grey's departure and the development of the pretensions of the General Assembly, or "Pakeha Committee," which contained so many of the former enemies of their race, steps were taken to give consistency to Maori aspirations. A memorandum drawn
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up at Browne's request by his responsible advisers narrates that: "The first proposal for a separate native state under the Waikato chief Te Whero Whero, seems to have been made as far back as in 1854." The objects of the Maori king party were various. Some of its supporters were loyal to the Queen, and desired to assist the Government in ameliorating the condition of the Maoris. Some were disloyal. Some were provoked by "a degraded portion of the newspaper press which teemed with menaces of the time when the whole Maori race would be reduced to a servile condition." Some were prompted by doubts as to the good faith of the Europeans. Even the Stafford Government "at one time entertained a hope that the good elements in the Maori king movement might gain the ascendency, and become the means of raising the population in the social scale." Who could blame a Maori patriot for the hope with which a grasping Ministry professed to sympathize? The selection of Te Whero Whero as king was a guarantee that the movement was not directly hostile, for the old man had been the constant friend of the English. His paramount position could be admitted without murmur, for the Waikato, though defeated by the firearms of the Ngapuhi, were perhaps the most powerful of all the tribes in the land. The league on the west coast to prohibit further land sales to Europeans, fell naturally under the protection of the Maori king, but the settlers, in their eagerness to govern, or through want of foresight, did not appreciate the importance of the Maori king or of his functions until long after the suggestion of his appointment. In one sense it might be said that the idea of a Maori kingdom preceded the English settlement. It was a project mooted in the days of Samuel Marsden to save the Maori race from degradation.
Early in 1856 the Governor appointed a Board to inquire into the land question, but neither he nor his advisers ascribed any importance to the king movement, or to the land sales prohibition league. He desired to know whether a Maori selling land "could not be made to a degree answerable for subsequent claims?" Of Major Nugent, who sat at the Board, Colonel Browne reported that "it is not easy to over-rate his ability and knowledge of native affairs." Under these circumstances it was mischievous to make Mr. Ligar, the Surveyor-
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BOARD UPON NATIVE LAND TITLE.
General, chairman of the Board, for he was conspicuous in no good sense. Evidence was taken from McLean, Bishop Selwyn, Mr. Whiteley, a Wesleyan missionary, and many others. Tamati Ngapora, the future counsellor of the Maori king, was examined. The report of the Board was that "generally there is no such thing as an individual claim, clear and independent of the tribal right," that "each native has a right in common with the whole tribe over the disposal of the land of the tribe," and that "the chiefs exercise an influence in the disposal of the land, but have only an individual claim like the rest of the people to particular portions." On this head there was scarcely any difference or doubt among the witnesses, several of whom were Maoris. Rare instances to the contrary were mentioned by two or three persons. Mr. Brown, Superintendent at Taranaki, said: "I do not think that any native has a strictly individual claim to land." Mr. Busby (formerly British Resident) emphatically stated that "the Government should decline purchasing disputed lands." Strangest of all, considering the part he was to take at Taranaki, McLean said: "I do not think that any native has a clear individual title to land in the Northern Island." Mr. Whiteley, after twenty-three years' residence, was equally positive. "No native has anything more than a right to individual occupation and cultivation, or locating a house on the land. If a sale is to be effected the sanction of the tribe is required." Riwai-te-ahu said: "I consider there is no individual claim. They are all entangled or matted together--the children of our common ancestor claiming the land bequeathed to them." The Board discovered also that as land was heritable in the female as well as in the male line, intermarriages between members of different tribes caused an involvement of titles in two tribes which it was highly dangerous to endeavour to dispose of by any rash purchase. The report was laid before the New Zealand representatives in July, 1856, and was sent to England. A chief, Hira Taiwhanga, made statements which ought to have made Browne's advisers pause if their intentions were honourable. A drunken American settler named Marsden had killed a native woman Kerara, in November, 1855. She was a Rotorua woman, but was murdered near Auckland. The man was tried and convicted, but not hanged until delay made the Maoris suspect that the woman's death
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was to be unavenged. They had demanded the surrender of the murderer as soon as his victim was buried. They asked if Englishmen thought them cattle to be slaughtered. Three hundred and seventy men went in their own vessels from Maketu to Auckland, intending to cut down the flagstaff if Marsden should not be hung. There had been meetings at Rotorua and elsewhere as well as at Auckland. Governor Browne's absence in the south delayed his decision upon the murderer's case. There were proposals to seize upon Auckland, or to retaliate by killing some European. A clergyman remonstrated against the sending to a magistrate of a violent Maori letter, threatening war against the Government. Moderate counsels prevailed, and it was determined to wait until the Governor should decide upon Marsden's case. Colonel Browne saw a letter from one chief to another, containing the ominous words: "I and my people were within a little of standing up and calling upon the whole island to join me in contending with the English for the independence of this island which has been trampled on; also on account of this murder. . . . Had this murderer been acquitted I should have given my voice for downright open war. As it is, the judge and the jury of twelve have consented that the man shall die, and that is satisfactory." Chiefs with their retainers arrived in Auckland and demanded justice. Colonel Wynyard attended a conference. To the Maori mind even the trial of the murderer was a mockery, inasmuch as he had never denied his deed. On the 12th February, the man was executed: but the Governor was so impressed with the difficulties of the situation that he assumed the responsibility of detaining the 58th Regiment, then under orders to leave New Zealand. Colonel Wynyard and the Executive Council concurred in the retention of the troops. The Stafford Ministry could only rely upon them for the coercion of the Maoris. Yet Browne, though he co-operated with his advisers, distrusted their motives. On the 14th February he wrote: "Political dissensions have been for some time and still are the bane of this colony" ... "elements of discord between the races are in existence, and imprudent legislation or interference with the rights of the Maoris would fan them into a flame not easily extinguished. ... I shall view with
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GOVERNOR DISTRUSTS MINISTRIES.
apprehension, and object to, any attempt to alter the provisions of the 73rd clause of the Constitution Act, or to bring the powers thereby entrusted to the Governor in any way under the control of the Assembly."
But while the Governor was thus reasoning, his Ministry were intoxicated with power and thirsted to enlarge it. In March, 1856, he devoted a despatch to the subject. It came to his knowledge that different opinions were entertained about the 73rd clause. If his views were correct the chief Land Commissioner must take orders from the Governor alone. "If the power of interference with the natives is confided to gentlemen liable to the pressure of public opinion, and whose tenure of office is dependent on the confidence of a public assembly, it will be impossible to foresee the result." He urgently referred the Secretary of State to Chief Justice Martin, who was returning to England, and was intimately acquainted with the subject. Mr. Labouchere scarcely rose to the necessity of the case. He dallied with it. The Palmerston Government comprised great names, although Gladstone, Graham, and Sydney Herbert had withdrawn because of the Crimean Inquiry Committee. Lord John Russell, after showing his incompetence at Vienna, had slunk from the Ministry to avoid censure; but Sir G. C. Lewis, Sir Charles Wood, Mr. Labouchere, Mr. Lowe, Sir Richard Bethell, Mr. Horsman, and others remained. The Crimean war was at an end. The Treaty of Paris was concluded before Governor Browne's despatch reached England. But other matters occupied the Ministry. Baron Rothschild and his fellow-Syrians were to be admitted into Parliament, and a new Abjuration Bill was in the Commons; Lord Granville was to go as ambassador-extraordinary to attend the coronation of the Emperor of Russia; public attention was more intent on the Rugely poisoning case and the Robson and Redpath frauds than on the fortunes of a rising colony or the fate of the Maori race; and if there was any superfluity of care for distant events it was to be expended in punishing the Chinese for seizing a piratical lorcha manned by Chinese but claiming to sail under English colours. Governor Browne was informed that "Her Majesty's Government consider that, notwithstanding all the respect due to the principle of responsible government, the
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management of native affairs should remain for the present mainly in the hands of a Governor responsible for it to the Crown." "Until further instructions" he was to pursue his previous course. These qualifications as to scope and duration of his control were calculated to stir up the local Ministry to further encroachment on his functions. So little did Mr. Labouchere foresee the result that he did not lay the despatches on the table of the House of Commons. From April, 1854, till July, 1860, they slumbered in recesses, from which they were to be produced only when the nation was startled by a new crisis. Sir George Grey had in 1853 been deemed competent, and a listless public assumed that all must go well under Colonel Browne. For Mr. Labouchere, warned as he was by the Governor, there was no excuse.
Meanwhile the Governor, with the help of McLean, wound up some disputes (clinging to the land purchases, thought to have been finally made by Sir George Grey), and struggled for a time to resist the tendency of his advisers' opinions. What both he and they ought to have foreseen took place. In November, 1856, the District Commissioner apprised him that there was to be a great assembly of Maori chiefs at Taupo. The main object was to check the decline of the Maoris, and the principal weapon was to be an arrest of land sales to the Government. While the Commissioner wrote the Maoris worked. Te Heu Heu was the moving spirit, and he called the meeting at Taupo. A missionary at Taupo, Mr. Grace, was reported by McLean to be aiding and abetting the Maori schemes, and the Governor was moved to procure Mr. Grace's removal by the Church Missionary Society. Browne reported that Te Heu Heu's assembly separated without effecting much beyond "a declaration by certain tribes that they would not permit land to be sold to the Europeans." But the Maori king movement may be said to have taken shape at Taupo. It was not then linked with the anti-land-selling league at Taranaki, nor did Te Rangitake ally himself with the king movement. But the object of both was the same. The "mana" of the Maori chiefs was to be carefully guarded. The collective title of the tribe was to be scrupulously respected. No sales of land by individual members of a tribe could be valid without sanction of the supreme tribal authority. That some "mana"
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WAHAROA DENIED ACCESS TO GOVERNOR.
existed and was recognized among the Maoris was not unknown to the English, for McLean declared before the House of Representatives, with regard to the Taranaki territory, that "on each occasion on which the Ngatiawa sold land there they sent a portion of the payment to Waikato as an acknowledgment of conquest, or of the right of 'mana' possessed by the Waikato chiefs as their conquerors." The Ministry, however, were too much bent on their own aggrandisement to care for any of these things. But the Governor was ill at ease. It appeared that the more reflective Maoris were unsettled in their minds, and the impulsive could less and less be restrained. The labours of the English Committee and the Ministry were bearing fruit. Colonel Browne wrote (18th February, 1857) that it was difficult if not impossible to satisfy "views opposed to each other, as those who want land and are in no way responsible for the manner in which it is obtained, and those who, like Mr. Mantell, consider the colonial government bound to care for the interests of the natives."
Early in 1857 the future Maori king-maker, Wiremu Tamihana Te Waharoa visited Auckland to lay the Maori grievances for the last time before the Governor. He it was who, as Tarapipipi, in 1844, peremptorily exacted restitution of property taken from settlers by Maoris returning to their homes from the great meeting at Remuera. His resolute character might have warned the Governor's advisers against lightly offending a chief so wise, so influential, and so friendly, at a time when the Maori mind was excited by suspicion and distrust. Yet Mr. Gorst distinctly records the fact that Te Waharoa was denied access to the Governor, and that McLean, the Native Secretary, refused him the common favour of a loan to enable him to erect a mill. A friend to whom he complained said that the chief must help himself. He went home, resolved to ask no more favours, and in February, 1857, sent a circular "to all Waikato," declaring that his tribe, Ngatihaua, agreed that Potatau should be king of New Zealand. "Be speedy. You will write to the remote tribes that they may hear." Potatau was loth to assume authority, and when he yielded claimed only the title "matua," or father. When it was known that, thus stirred, the Maoris were to assemble at Rangiriri in May, 1857, the Governor's
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advisers were alarmed, and a valuable paper prepared by Mr. Fenton guided their action. Colonel Browne, Mr. C. W. Richmond, and Mr. McLean started for Rangiriri. The meeting had been postponed. They journeyed to Otawhao in the Upper Waikato territory. Mr. Fenton joined them. They met Te Heu Heu, the Taupo chief, who bitterly told them that the lowest Englishman was hospitably entertained by Maoris, but that a chief of high rank visiting Auckland was rudely neglected by the Pakehas. Moreover, the debased English who lived in Maori districts committed wrongs for which there was no redress. The Maoris would have a king and assemblies of their own. They would not interfere with English settlements, but for the English in native districts they would make laws. Commencing mildly he rose to Maori oratoric heat, and said that in what the Maoris were doing they were advised by a Pakeha. The Governor rode on to Rangiaohia, a district smiling with Maori cultivations. There he received loyal salutes and addresses, but found the new movement stirring the Maori mind everywhere. He returned to Rangiriri. Potatau met him at Paetai. Chiefs made speeches to him. They wished to have runangas (Maori assemblies), a resident magistrate, and law administered locally. Browne assented, and was cheered. Potatau approved. He oracularly said he was a dying man, but would be guided by the Governor, and would bequeath his people to his care. "Enough," he said; "give the runanga, give the law, and the magistrate. It is ended." 14 Mr. Richmond distrusted the chief's "apparent acquiescence." He considered him "a profound diplomatist." 15
Browne returned to Auckland, fondly hoping that the king movement was annihilated. He mentioned in a despatch, 13th June, 1859, that the war-canoe in which he ascended belonged to Potatau, and "was steered by his son." After the Governor's departure the real Maori meeting began. The Ngatihaua planted a new flag; white, with a red border and two red crosses as symbols of Christianity, and the words "Potatau, king of New Zealand." Ceremonials occupied a few days. The Union Jack was hoisted near the new flag. Takirau tied the flags together, saying: "Our king will be friendly with the Queen,"
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MAORI MEETINGS IN WAIKATO.
and asking for the blessing of God on New Zealand. Wiremu Nera, an old warrior, second in importance only to Potatau, deprecated the new flag. "He was content with that of England. It is seen all over the world, and it belongs to me. I get some of its honour. What honour can I get from your flag? It is like a fountain without water." The king-maker was sorry his "father had spoken so strongly." He wanted order and laws, which a king could give better than a governor. But if the flag was not liked let Rewi pull it down. Without a word Rewi threw the flag at the foot of the Union Jack and sat down. The act of casting down the Maori flag was construed as intended to show the utter subjugation which Wiremu Nera seemed to court. Rewi, the Ngatimaniapoto chief, who thus acted was to become a moving spirit in the long wars which were to afflict his country, and the special appeal to him implied that his opinion was greatly regarded. He was then about fifty-four years old. Like the king-maker, he had not the statuesque and striking countenance so common amongst Maoris. Wiry in frame, he was more powerful than its proportions betokened. But his eyes, reflective and sagacious in repose, literally flashed with lightning glance when he spoke with fervour, and seemed to defy by their rapidity of movement the attempt to fasten upon his gaze. What he resolved upon it was believed he would grimly do. Tarahawhaiki angrily rehoisted the flag, saying he loved New Zealand. Te Oriori declared that his word was ever to keep the land, but he desired to reverence both the Maori king and Queen Victoria. Tarapuhi deprecated the making of a king. Untrodden paths were tangled. Such would be the new way. Let all adhere to the way of the first Governor, who gave friendship, love, and kindness, and had been imitated by his successors. Te Whero (to be known in after years as the ally of the English in the field of battle) followed in the same strain; as did Wiremu Nera. Waata Kukutai said: "Let the flag stand, but wash out the writing on it." He would remain the Queen's subject. Again Tarahawhaiki rose; a ferment was beginning when Hoera called out: "Let us pray." Silence ensued; he read prayers, and the meeting was closed. On the following day Potatau appeared with his friends and spoke enigmatically, recommending religion, love, and unity, and
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concluding with a song. Hoani Papita cried: "Fresh water is lost when it mingles with the salt." He would set up the king. He sang a song, whose burden was that the land should be retained. Two thousand Maori voices joined in chorus. The violent Te Heu Heu then spoke of Maori wrongs until other chiefs restrained him. The king-maker said the work would not end soon. Heta Tarawhiti entreated his countrymen to cling to the good law and learning of England. Hemi Putini asked Potatau to declare his thoughts about the flags. Paora placed the new flag near the king's, and marked a ring round each which Rewi deepened. Kukena, uncle of Potatau, amid deep silence lowered the king's flag and tied it half-mast high to the English flagstaff. More speeches and songs followed. In the evening Mr. Fenton addressed the chiefs in their own tongue, and urged them to act in concert with the Government. On the following day the king-maker's friends despatched the flag to summon more chiefs to induce Potatau to become king or appoint some other chief. Again a runanga was held, but at this time at Ihumatao on the Manukau, within a few miles of Auckland. Bishop Selwyn and Mr. Buddle, a Wesleyan missionary, were there, and warned the chiefs of the danger of their project. At Ihumatao the speeches were like those at Rangiriri. Friendly chiefs visited the Governor at Auckland, but even they expressed jealousy of the Pakeha Assembly and desired one of their own.
From Rangiaohia, Hoani Papita and other chiefs wrote a long letter on the 10th June. "We are here gathered together to appoint a king to check the evils amongst us." They quoted St. Paul to show that the king was the minister of God for good, and would execute wrath upon evil-doers. They had heard that the Europeans were opposed to their projects, but could not understand the justice of such opposition. "It will be better for the Pakeha to be friendly to the Maori, and let the love of God govern both; that is, the law of love." They had heard that Mr. C. O. Davis was accused of inciting them to elect a king. That was utterly untrue. They had long ago thought of doing so. "It was commenced by Te Heu Heu, who proposed it to Potatau, afterwards by Hoani, and after that by Wiremu Tamihana Te Waharoa. If you disapprove of this act of God, take back your Gospel also. Let it not rest upon us, and let
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F. D. FENTON AND D. MCLEAN.
our island be a heap of dirt." The Governor told the Secretary of State (12th June, 1857), that he apprehended "no sort of danger from the present movement," which was "arrested" (he trusted), but was "too deeply rooted to be eradicated by argument or persuasion." He considered the "time critical, and that much good or evil must result from the manner in which we now act or neglect to act." A code of laws adapted to Maori needs should at once be prepared, and circulated in the Maori language. In the preparation of the code the services of Mr. Frederick Dart Fenton were enlisted. A solicitor by profession, he had arrived in New Zealand in 1850, and rented land from the Maoris on the south bank of the Waikato river. After a time Sir George Grey offered him a civil appointment (in the Deeds Office), which he accepted, and afterwards quitted in order to become resident magistrate at Kaipara. In March, 1856, he became temporarily Native Secretary to Governor Browne. Mr. McLean then became Native Secretary and Chief Land Commissioner, and in the latter part of the year Fenton was appointed resident magistrate at Whaingaroa. Thence he was summoned to act as magistrate at Waikato in order to redeem Colonel Browne's promise in April, 1857, at Rangiriri. He laboured at disadvantage. Donald McLean strove to obtain the appointment for another, and detracted from Fenton's ability so rashly as to tell a committee that Fenton had "little or no knowledge of Maori language."
The aspersion was confuted sufficiently in 1860 by Archdeacon Maunsell, who in publishing a second edition of a Maori grammar expressed his acknowledgments to Mr. Fenton as "one of the few who had studied the Maori language grammatically," and who had "carried the work through the press." 16 In the mean time, however, McLean's opposition to Fenton was insidious and injurious. In March, 1857, Mr. Fenton had drawn up a careful statement of the condition of affairs,--the doubts and desires
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of the Maoris,--their plans for creating wholesome jurisdiction among themselves, to replace their waning polity of the past-- their proposition to create a king, and to establish order. He saw "the aspect of a new people agonizing in the birth-throes of order." 17 He proposed that the Governor should assist them; that the villages should nominate native magistrates whom the Governor should appoint, and who would be aided in their work by officers of the Government. 18 The Governor and the Ministry lauded Mr. Fenton's zeal and ability, and thereby increased the chagrin of McLean, who, as Native Secretary, was (under the relations established between the Governor and his advisers) a permanent officer under the control of the Governor, and nominally if not practically exempt from that of Mr. C. W. Richmond, who, as Treasurer, was also responsible adviser on native affairs. 19 McLean, as Secretary, received correspondence, and forwarded it with remarks to Richmond, who transmitted it with minutes to the Governor, whose decision it was McLean's duty to carry out. Occasionally Mr. Richmond requested to see drafts of letters written in obedience to the Governor's directions, and he held that it was "the business of the Native Minister to originate advice." On the 6th May, 1857, the Ministry recommended Fenton's appointment; on the 9th the Governor sanctioned it, and on the 11th Fenton was informed that on the recommendation of the Colonial Treasurer he had been appointed resident magistrate for the Waikato and Waipa districts. Detailed instructions were given to him. His appointment was in compliance with "the earnest request of the natives." The Ministry considered that "such a people, impossible to govern by any external force, promise to become readily amenable to laws enacted with their own consent." They proposed to enlarge the number of native assessors who had been instituted by Sir G. Grey. Fenton was directed by the Governor to prepare a draft code of concise laws to be "forwarded to Ministers for their consideration and amendment."
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FENTON GOES TO WAIKATO.
It seems unaccountable that neither the Governor nor the Native Minister suggested that Fenton should communicate in any manner with the proposed king. It is equally strange that Mr. Fenton did not visit him. Mr. Richmond, in giving evidence in 1860 before a Select Committee, was asked whether the Government subsequently attempted "to remedy the oversight," and he said, "I think not." He pleaded that the Ministry had "no medium of communication except the Native Secretary's office," but his plea was inconsistent with the elaborate minute of the Ministry on Mr. Fenton's duties and appointment, and with a minute of his own (approved by the Governor), directing Fenton (17th June, 1857) to correspond with the Treasurer (Richmond). 20 Mr. Fenton visited Waikato in July. His Journal is in the New Zealand blue-books.
Crossing from Onehunga to Waiuku without any attempt to conciliate Potatau at Mangere, he found Rewi at the mission station Kohanga, with a band of Ngatimaniapoto. Rewi hoped Fenton would visit him at Kihikihi, and was told that to prove his earnestness he must build a court-house. In fact, the Maoris built court-houses in many places. Waata Kukutai--the electic, who had said, "Let the flag stand, but wash out the writing on it"--sat with Fenton at Taupari, in an unfinished building. The proceedings were conducted with decorum, and "Kukutai acted well, with courage and judgment." Holding meetings at various places with various tribes, finding encouragements in one place and discouragements in another, Mr. Fenton recorded in his diary (10th August) his dissatisfaction with Potatau. "I wish this king business was at an end. It is a great obstruction to me, and unsettles the minds of the natives. I cannot help thinking that Potatau is doing all he can to prevent the movement from dying out. . . . Spite of his pleasant words at Paetai, I have no faith in him." . . . Ngaruawahia is to be the residence of the king. . . They have also rechristened the island. New Zealand being a Pakeha name they have rejected, and now they call it Aotearoa, the name of one of the canoes that carried an immigration hither. . . . Potatau is a stupid old man, and perhaps has no other motive than the gratification of his pride." Colonel Browne
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also spoke contemptuously of Potatau. To the Secretary of State he described him "as almost in his dotage." Mr. Fenton was not long in doubt as to the consequence of neglecting Potatau. He left Auckland without making any arrangement to visit the king expectant, and at Onehunga was separated only by the narrowest part of the Manukau waters from Potatau's abode at Mangere; so narrow indeed that the places are now connected by a bridge and causeway. Still Mr. Fenton, uninstructed by the Government and unprompted by wisdom, made no sign of friendship with the chief, or of desire to consult him. There is reason to fear that Donald McLean, jealous of intrusion by Fenton in the domain of Maori affairs, encouraged Potatau's people to thwart the intruder. Potatau made up his mind without delay. He issued his answer to the proposal of the king-maker, and he dated it 14th July, 1857: "Friends,--Salutations to you. Your word has reached me, and I have considered it. Formerly I did not approve of it. Now I will abide by it. . . . But guide the plough aright. Let the line be straight." An enigmatic song preceded his signature. While the ink was hardly dry which had recorded Fenton's disparagement of Potatau, the Maori letter accepting the kingship was placed in Fenton's hands at Whatawhata. He had not thought the chief would "speak out so plainly." "Government cannot longer pretend ignorance of this movement. At the same time it would be highly injudicious for the Government to take any step which would appear to offer hostility to Potatau." Fenton thought he should be quietly spoken to, and told that the annual payments made to him would be withdrawn if he persevered in incommoding the magistrates. But the die was cast when the Governor, the Ministry, and Mr. Fenton passed by the old man to whom the Governor had promised that he would grant the runanga, the law, and the magistrates.
On 14th August, Fenton saw a document signed by fifty of the king-maker's tribe, agreeing to recognize the king. Soon afterwards he saw an enigmatical Maori letter written by Mr. C. O. Davis. Mr. Davis had resided in New Zealand long before Captain Hobson hoisted the English flag there. He was afterwards clerk and interpreter, but resigned his office early in
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LAND DEPARTMENT AND NATIVE OFFICE.
1857, because he "considered it an intolerable burden to continue in it any longer." 21 He then handed a paper to the Native Minister on the critical condition of Maori affairs, and the confusion which was created by the absence of system in dealing with them. He was unalterably of opinion that there should be three distinct departments for the conduct of native business:-- One to deal with the natives, under a Native Secretary; another to despatch all legal business connected with the natives, under a Native Counsel; a third to deal with land matters, under the Land Commissioner. The first he said could be efficiently administered by Mr. Fenton with the writer's aid. He arraigned the policy of making gifts to the Maoris with which McLean was identified. The consolidation of the departments would be fruitful of evil. To unite the Land Office and the Native Secretary's was fraught with danger. No man was supposed to know more of Maori customs than Davis, and he professed to be alive to the dangers of the king movement. But his advice fell vainly upon the armour of the Government; and McLean would suffer no rivalry in Maori knowledge. It was insinuated that Davis treacherously corresponded with chiefs. The Governor sent to England a letter written by Davis to a Taupo chief in June, 1857, which, though allegorical in language, was deemed an encouragement of the king movement. A few days after Fenton read Potatau's acceptance of the kingship he deemed injudicious a letter from Davis which was shown to him. In one point he agreed with Davis. He declared that the fusion of the Land Department with the Native Secretary's was evil. "I cannot banish from my thoughts the conviction that a considerable part of the present uneasy and suspicious tone of the Maori mind is to be attributed to that unhappy union and its consequences. 22 . . . Sir G. Grey always had his own private interpreter; and Ministers, I respectfully state, made a great mistake in striking that officer from the Civil List. . . . The chiefs are anxious to see the Governor and tell him their cares. It is well that they should do so, for his Excellency ought to rely on nothing but the best information." Mr. Fenton was right. It cannot be imagined that if the Governor had seen the king-
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maker early in 1857, he would have sent him away in dudgeon, as McLean did, to give shape to the agitation for a Maori king. The Governor himself was unconscious of the sapping process by which his discretion was about to be undermined. The power which struck off his interpreter was gradually growing. His Native Minister was ere long to conceive that he was specially fitted to solve the Maori problem, and warp the Governor and the Colonial Office to abandon the principles upon which Maori affairs had been conducted by Governors. The new system, however, could not be enforced without troops, and the web in which the Governor was to be enmeshed was slowly to be woven. In sending a magistrate to Waikato all parties agreed, and there were profuse expressions of a desire to aid the Governor loyally. In spite of obstacles, Mr. Fenton, with the assistance of Kukutai and others, strengthened the attachment of many to the Queen, but it was plain that a majority in Upper Waikato adhered to their king. In the end of August, Fenton returned to Auckland. A Select Committee in 1860 reported that, excepting the omission to visit Potatau, Fenton's journey was decidedly successful, and that he was singularly well qualified for his task. To whom the blame for that unfortunate omission was due-- "whether to Mr. Fenton; the Native Minister (C. W. Richmond); or the Native Department" (D. McLean); the Committee could not say. McLean at an early date complained that Fenton's proceedings caused ill-feeling among the Maoris, and that efforts to introduce grass-seeds bred suspicions that it was intended to "subdivide their tribal lands." He alleged that by cultivating the acquaintance of the younger chiefs, Fenton irritated the elder and more important. If McLean strove to allay rather than aggravate the irritation, he failed. He had an interview with Potatau, who said that he would leave Mangere and reside at Waikato, which till then, though solicited, he had declined to do; that he was no longer consulted as in former days (by Sir G. Grey), and changes were made without his concurrence.
As a proof of the confusion denounced by Davis, it may be mentioned that while Mr. Richmond, the Native Minister, stated that Ministers were "powerless in the matter" of the omission to conciliate Potatau, because they "had no medium of com-
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CONFUSION OF DEPARTMENTS.
munication except McLean's office," McLean himself stated that he had "no opportunity" to remedy it because Fenton "received his instructions from Richmond." Fenton stated that he had no instructions to visit Potatau, and though it occurred to him that it might be beneficial he was restrained by a fear that his "visit might be construed into an unauthorized interference." 23 He was recalled to Auckland to prepare a book of "Laws for the use of the natives," and was informed that in future he was to send to the Native Secretary a copy of every communication he might make respecting native affairs. The Governor was confused by the contention for power between Richmond and McLean. He had directed in August that all magisterial business should be divided into "two classes, European and native." On the first, magistrates were to address the Treasurer; on the second, Mr. McLean. "When the correspondence is of a mixed nature they will address both departments simultaneously." Mr. Richmond shrunk from a system which withdrew native affairs from his cognizance, and the Governor shrunk from making any changes without the sanction of the Secretary of State. The arrangement of 1856 provided that in all native affairs the Native Secretary's advice should reach the Governor through the hands of a responsible Minister, and Colonel Browne would not depart from it. His advisers refused to aid him in measures of defence. "I told them (he wrote 8th August, 1857) that if they would undertake to provide, or cause the province of Auckland to provide, proper accommodation for (H.M. troops) I would not remove them. My advisers, however, distinctly decline to do so."
Having composed a great part of his treatise, Fenton asked the Treasurer's permission, in November, 1857, to return to Waikato, and was told to write through McLean's office on the subject; and was subsequently ordered by the Governor to remain in Auckland till otherwise instructed. The attitude of the Maoris was beginning to alarm Colonel Browne. By McLean's advice he saw Tamati Ngapora, the chief adviser of Potatau, and was assured that the Maoris did not desire to throw off their allegiance to the Queen. Tamati Ngapora was a Maori clergyman,
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highly esteemed by both races. He complained that good laws were not enforced, and that the English insisted on selling ardent spirits and firearms to his countrymen, who were being debauched by contact with the viler sort of white men. He stated that only the earnest solicitation of the tribe had prevailed upon Potatau to accept the offer of kingship. It was after Potatau had told McLean that in former times Sir George Grey took no important step affecting Maori interests without consulting the chiefs, that Colonel Browne insisted on withdrawing Fenton from Richmond's control. Potatau spoke truly. It was ever Sir George Grey's practice to consult Potatau, Waka Nene, and others, and assure himself of their concurrence before promulgating a decision affecting the Maoris. When McLean reported Potatau's words, some of Colonel Browne's advisers were rash enough to recommend that the old chief should be seized; but Waka Nene wisely persuaded the Governor to leave him alone. Neglect was, he said, the best weapon the Governor could use. Takerei told Fenton that Donald McLean had made Potatau jealous by saying that Fenton was separating Waikato from him. Potatau himself was Takerei's informant.
Placed under McLean's control, Fenton returned to Waikato (after some months) with instructions to confine himself to magisterial duties and the compilation of a census. He was no longer to convene meetings, and was to desist from urging the Maoris to convert fern-grounds into pasture. 24 McLean had no
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THE GOVERNOR ON FENTON'S POSITION.
sympathy with any efforts on Maori behalf which did not emanate from himself. Mr. Fenton's duties led him far up the
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Waipa river, and he overheard conversations about the Maori king which were discontinued when he was known to be an auditor. He made no progress with the king-maker; but the influential Te Oriori was complaisant to him. What might have been the result if McLean had been loyal or considerate cannot be predicated. As it was, the hopes founded on the proceedings of the Governor at Rangiriri were doomed to disappointment. Fenton's office came to an untimely end. Friendly Maoris sent a chief to ask the Governor to fulfil his promises. Their emissary failing to obtain an interview with the Governor, returned in disgust, and his friends joined in the king-movement to which they had previously been opposed. Mr. Gorst remarked with some sadness that it is useless to conjecture what might have been the result if active efforts to govern and civilize the Maoris had at this time been persevered in.
A Committee appointed in 1860 to inquire as to the abortive effort to introduce civil institutions in Waikato, reported that they could see no sufficient reason for the withdrawal of Mr. Fenton, and that it had disheartened the friendly Maoris. How the king-maker Waharoa answered an invitation to appear before the Committee will be seen hereafter.
No sooner had the blundering of the Ministry alienated the influential chiefs and brought Mr. Fenton's mission to an untimely end, than the Maori king was duly installed at Ngaruawahia. The constitution of the Maori power was thus recorded by Mr. Gorst: "As the European magistrate left the Waikato, Potatau went into it, and was duly installed king in April, 1858." Colonel Browne hoped that by neglect the movement would die, as Waka Nene advised him to permit it to die: but under advice of Mr. C. W. Richmond 25 and his colleagues, the Governor
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FENTON WITHDRAWN FROM WAIKATO.
was himself about to take a step at Taranaki which was to fan the embers of distrust into flame, and furnish the natives with what had been so long dreaded by prudent Europeans--a common wrong. Minor causes paved the way for the final act in the tragedy. The withdrawal of Mr. Fenton gave offence to all natives who had co-operated with him in Waikato. Waata Kukutai averred that it grieved them, and turned many from the Queen to the King. Ruka Taurua corroborated his evidence. The brave and pious Rev. Heta Tarawhiti thought that if Fenton's work had not been checked his proceedings would in the end have won the approval of Potatau, and that when he was withdrawn the friendly natives deemed that the Governor' promise had been broken. Reihana Porutu agreed in the main with Kukutai. Hone Wetere, a Ngatimaniapoto chief, distinctly declared that his tribe only joined the king party "because Mr. Fenton had given up going to Waikato." Mohi te Rongomau was of the same opinion with regard to his tribe, the Ngatihourua. The people were pleased with Fenton's administration of law. Now "I only am left within my boundaries." Takerei te Rau, who averred that he had specially requested that Fenton should be appointed magistrate because he knew the Maori language well, declared that there was no fault in Fenton,
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and that his detention by the Governor in Auckland was injurious. Three other chiefs supported Takerei's views. He added a commentary which has at all times been true in New Zealand: "There are respectable Pakehas whose thoughts are good according to their views, and there are low Pakehas bent upon evil. There are also Maori chiefs whose thoughts are bent towards good, and there are common persons who are arrogant in their behaviour like the low Pakehas. There are also conceited Pakehas, who without provocation speak contemptuously to the Maoris; and there are conceited Maoris who speak contemptuously to respectable Pakehas without provocation. The low Pakehas mean murder. It will be well for you to look into this matter, for with you the law is old, with us it is a child; and the thoughts of the Maoris have not been applied to the system of the law. Those low Pakehas, therefore, constantly err. It will be for you, the great Runanga, 26 to see to this. . . . A single individual should not presume to sell land, whether in the west or in the east, in the north or in the south. It should not be yielded to the control of one man. If the great Runanga of all the tribes consented, then only would it be right; but for one man to sell his land would not be right."
It is fair to mention that the sagacious Tamati Ngapora, Potatau's counsellor, stated that Fenton's mission created divisions, and that Potatau ought to have been consulted before the magistrate was sent to Waikato. He admitted that Kukutai, Takerei, Te Kereihi, Te Oriori, Te Wheoro, and a few others supported Fenton, but Kereihi (after Fenton's withdrawal) subsequently clung to Potatau. Potatau's friends were numerous. Ngapora named Te Heu Heu, Rewi, Te Wetini, and a host of others. The good Sir William Martin could not see that Fenton's withdrawal was necessary though he admitted the influence and sagacity of Tamati Ngapora. Not in those days subjected to the malign control of his advisers, Colonel Browne wrote of the retiring Chief Justice (17 Sept. 1857): "The unblemished conduct of Chief Justice Martin, his learning, piety, and absolute independence of local politics, have given him great influence over both Europeans and natives, and he
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WAIKATO SELECT COMMITTEE REPORT.
enjoys the universal respect and esteem of all classes and both races. The utmost that can be desired is that his successor may be his equal." Enough of the evidence has been recorded. The Waikato Select Committee of 1860, presided over by one of the Cabinet in which Richmond was Minister for Native Affairs, reported that "with the light of two years' experience since that time before them they could not perceive sufficient reasons for suspending the work on which Fenton was engaged," --and their verdict must be confirmed by any impartial inquirer. Though withdrawn from Waikato, Mr. Fenton was retained in the service. He became assistant law officer. For the want of co-operation between him and McLean, the Select Committee relieved Fenton from blame. The discord between McLean and the Ministry seemed to the Committee fatal to any plans for the good of the natives. McLean himself, when he thought it consistent with his sense of importance, advised the Governor to send another magistrate to Waikato, but it was then too late to undo the mischief reprobated by the Waikato Committee.
It must ever seem strange that when rumours of disaffection were flitting through the air, like bats in the darkness, the Governor and his advisers relaxed the restrictions upon the acquisition of firearms by the natives. Within six months the Maoris were said to have possessed themselves of thousands of firearms, together with ammunition. Even when Waata Kukutai implored the Governor by letter to prohibit their sale (October, 1858), neither Mr. Richmond nor the Governor would take warning. The wisdom of Sir George Grey had no imitator. In 1858, the General Assembly found that a blunder had been committed, and recommended that there should be no further relaxation. Internal strife was promoted by the arming of a warlike race. Te Hapuku was taunted with selling land. "As he had sold the forest, he must cook his food with his ancestors' bones." He resented the affront; and(when at war, said in vindication--"A blow is soon forgotten, but an insulting speech lives for ever." The incensed chief was besieged, and when it was thought that a crisis was approaching, the Governor sent nearly 300 soldiers to Port Napier to avert it. McLean entreated both sides to accept a peace. Te Hapuku was allowed to march off, with the honours
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of war, to his land in the interior, and his pah was destroyed by fire. At Port Napier as at Taranaki the contending Maoris were peaceful towards the English. At the latter place the hollow truce was broken by the treachery of Ihaia. Katatore, after the truce of 1856, changed his tactics, and advocated sales of land. The provincial authorities, nothing loth, received his advances gladly. Ihaia burned with jealousy. In January, 1858, as Katatore and three friends were riding from Taranaki they were waylaid and shot, on one of the main roads in the Bell block district, in sight of Europeans. The Assistant Native Secretary reported that Ihaia admitted that the plot was laid by him; that the attack was made on the first occasion on which Katatore had gone unarmed; that after he was shot in many places three guns were broken in beating him, and that he was finally mangled with tomahawks. Tamati Tiraurau, who traded extensively with the English, was reported as having been "specially prominent for his ferocity." Ihaia's old ally Arama Karaka had died in 1857, and Ihaia's resources were few. The friends of Katatore at once killed two of Ihaia's tribe, and sacked the Ikamoana pah; but Ihaia escaped, and his deserted property and live stock were destroyed by the enraged tribe. Te Rangitake with Katatore's friends besieged Ihaia in the Karaka pah at Waitara. Many of the settlers sympathized with Ihaia; and besought the Governor that Ihaia and his friends might be rescued. The Government offered to remove the besieged to the Chatham Islands; but, relying on the settlers and the Ministry, Ihaia declined the proffered asylum. He sent ambassadors to ask for help from Waikato and the Upper Wanganui. A shameful document is extant in the English blue-books. E. L. Humphries, Speaker of the Provincial Council, on behalf of that body, pleaded in May, 1858, for Ihaia as having by his "friendly, honest character gained a foremost place in the esteem of the settlers. . . ." "If at any time he has evinced hostility to the Government, he has always been actuated by a sincere desire to serve what he thought the cause of the settlers." He had committed a crime, but considering the circumstances," and that it only took place after the Government had for years abandoned all control over the natives, they cannot but express their opinion that
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MURDER OF KATATORE.
the crime is in some measure shared by the more civilized race which compelled a rude people to return to their barbarous customs." The aid of the Government was entreated to coerce the natives to sell their lands. 27 The terrors of the situation must needs have been great, or the greed for Maori land immeasurably unscrupulous, when such words were penned by the Provincial Council at Taranaki. The settlers were not directly attacked, but they lived in an atmosphere of fire and slaughter. It was rumoured that Te Rangitake threatened to throw Ihaia and two of his principal accomplices into a furnace.
Governor Browne had proclaimed in February that within a pale, north of the Waitaha stream, stretching eastwards towards Mount Egmont, and returning to the sea at Okurukuru, south of Taranaki, all persons unlawfully assembled with arms should be treated as in arms against the Queen. Troops were in readiness throughout the colony; militia were called out on the spot, and Mr. Humphries and his colleagues grumbled at the Government for not coercing Te Rangitake. But a neutral policy was still maintained. Failing to storm, Te Rangitake prepared to burn, the Karaka stockade, and Ihaia and his people wished to surrender themselves to the British if the latter would save the women and children. But the perpetrator of murder on the Queen's territory could hardly be held harmless by the Queen's law, and Ihaia preferred the risk of violent death to the chance of being hanged. He drew off his people at night, not concealing, but making known, his retreat by a loud farewell; while his allies, from Wanganui and Mokau, silently took up a position in the abandoned pah, in order to shoot the unsuspecting Te Rangitake and his friends on their entrance. The stratagem was discovered, terms of peace were agreed upon, Ihaia retired northwards to the Mimi river, and there was again such peace as could be maintained in a land where time, which runs not against the Crown in England, was equally powerless against
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Maori revenge. Mr. Parris, who had in 1857 been appointed Commissioner for the district, reported that it was at the instigation of the Rev. Mr. Whiteley that he persuaded Te Rangitake and Ihaia to consent that the latter should leave the pah, and the former should then destroy it. With characteristic treachery Ihaia laid his plot to destroy Te Rangitake, and it was by the "opportune arrival" of Mr. Parris himself that the ambuscade was discovered and thwarted. Ihaia lived to take part with the English in actions against his countrymen, and died of intemperance and disease in 1873. He had been enslaved in the Waikato district, and profited by the general emancipation of their slaves by the Maori chiefs. He was of small stature and mild aspect. In a narrative written by one of those who sympathized with his strife against Katatore, it is stated that "one who knew him well declared that he was neither true to his race, his tribe, or to the British." 28 As Colonel Browne wrote frequently about Ihaia and the settlers who connived with him, it may be well to show the workings of the Governor's mind before he became mere clay in the hands of the Ministry.
(22nd January, 1858.) "I have expressed strong disapprobation of the conduct of the gentleman who communicated with Ihaia after the murder, though in so doing I have little doubt he was actuated by the best motives. I regret our inability to vindicate the law by seizing Ihaia and his accomplices in his own district, but have desired that no communication should be held with them, and that they should be informed that if found within the English settlement the law will be allowed to take its usual course."
(6th April, 1858.) (While Ihaia, with from one to two hundred followers, was besieged by Te Rangitake with about 600), "as the settlers' sympathies are generally with the besieged, there is constant danger of collision between them and Te Rangitake. . . . Ihaia in his letter offers to surrender himself unconditionally to me, and submit to be tried by English law, the full consequences of which he seems not to have been aware of. 29 . . . Should Ihaia be willing to go to the Chatham Islands,
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THE GOVERNOR AND IHAIA.
but persuasion prove ineffectual upon Te Rangitake, the civil authorities have been directed to appeal to the officer commanding, (whose instructions) are briefly to effect the removal of Ihaia and his party, for whom a vessel has been chartered, peaceably if possible, if not by force. ... I have directed a gentleman in the Native Land Department to inform Te Rangitake that I adhere to my determination not to interfere with either party, but that I will not permit any more bloodshed." (Colonel Browne's position was difficult, but he could not fail to see that in dissuading Te Rangitake from avenging, in open war, the assassination of Katatore, and in providing an asylum for Ihaia who was abetted by the settlers, he ran risk of being deemed sympathetic with the criminal who was thus shielded from Maori punishment and exempted from trial by English law.)
(17th May, 1858.) "My anticipations have been fully realized (as regarded Te Rangitake), the chief who threatened to fire on the troops or any one else who attempted to interfere on behalf of Ihaia. Te Rangitake submitted at once to my decision, in reference to the removal of Ihaia, but the latter having received reinforcement and promise of further aid, declined to accept the interference which he so earnestly solicited in his letter. . . . I should also add that the settlers openly avow their desire to possess the land which was the original cause, and is now the chief subject of dispute between the contending chiefs." Just at that period (18th May), Mr. Richmond, the Native Minister (one of the Taranaki settlers), explained in Parliament "the views of the administration as to the government of the natives." Without a measure "to promote the acquisition by natives of individual titles, and to accelerate the extinction of the native title, we think that any native policy must be incomplete. .. . . The Constitution Act reposes in the General Assembly an immense trust--a power which has been regarded with great jealousy by some friends of the natives. But I, sir, hold that the native needs no protector in this House." In sending to the Secretary of State a printed copy of Mr. Richmond's speech, the Governor wrote (7th June, 1858), that with two exceptions he agreed with it. "I entirely demur to the opinion that the natives need no protection. I know of no more practical proof
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of the incorrectness of this statement than the pressure which is daily brought to bear on the Executive Government by the inhabitants of New Plymouth (Taranaki): that it has been hitherto resisted redounds to the credit of the Executive, who know that I have both the power and the will to support them; but if that power were surrendered no Ministry could hold office in opposition to the wishes of the settlers, whether they were or were not in accordance with justice to the native race." On the 9th June, 1858, the Governor transmitted a memorial from the inhabitants of New Plymouth to the General Assembly, and said, with regard to a charge that Ihaia and his congeners, in whom the settlers took "deep interest," had been refused the assistance of the Government, "This is the gravamen of the complaint, and I therefore state distinctly that I am most anxious to acquire land at New Plymouth ... to obtain this desirable object I will, however, never permit land to be taken without the consent of those to whom it belongs, nor will I interfere to compel an equitable division of common land among the respective claimants as desired by the memorialists. . . . This decision is not less one of expediency than of justice, for the whole of the Maori race maintain the right of the minority to prevent the sale of land held in common with the utmost jealousy. ... Te Rangitake has no sort of influence with me or the Colonial Government. We believe him to be an infamous character, but I will not permit the purchase of land over which he has any right without his consent." On 14th October, 1858, he forwarded a formal memorandum, signed by Mr. Richmond on behalf of the Ministry, and contended at great length against the "expediency of subjecting the management of native affairs to the control of the responsible Minister which is inferred throughout the memorandum." Up to this date it seems that Colonel Browne resisted the persuasions of his advisers, and they were constrained to wait until he could be seduced into some questionable act which would provoke strife, from which, when once committed to it, the gallantry of a soldier would prevent him from shrinking. His good genius still prevailed in November, 1858, when Mr. Carrington, one of the evil spirits of Taranaki, sent to England, through him, a letter urging "that the treaty of Waitangi, being no longer valuable to us, should
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THE GOVERNOR ON MAORI AFFAIRS.
be broken." The Governor would not trouble the Secretary of State with any remarks "on such a document." In March, 1859, Carrington again importuned Colonel Browne. He learned "with deep concern that special instructions from Her Majesty preclude his Excellency from coercing a minority of the natives into selling their lands,"--and that his Excellency, considering such a "proceeding impolitic and unjust, would never sanction it." Carrington urged that he really meant well towards the Maoris, and that it was cruel to prevent a minority from "selling their equitable portion of waste land, subject to the approval of the Chief Land Purchase Commissioner." The Governor replied that he had been inaccurately reported, but that Her Majesty's Government had conveyed to him an "unqualified approval of his views." He was therefore "unable to adopt" Carrington's. Thus he wrote on the 25th March, and thus he may have thought. But already on the 8th he had entered upon the unjust course he denounced, and Whitaker, the Attorney-General, laughed in his sleeve when he saw a soldier committed to a quarrel, which a morbid sense of honour might constrain him to pursue after it was found to be unjust. One Cutfield was the appropriately-named Superintendent of Taranaki, when Colonel Browne was drawn into the conspiracy of the settlers to rob the Maoris of their cultivations in 1859; but Carrington rose afterwards to the same distinction, for which his sympathies fitted him.
The Governor's contention against the plans of his Ministry, as shown by the foregoing citations from his despatches in June and October, 1858, calls for some description of the measures devised for the control of Maori affairs. In the meshes of law both the rights of the natives and the conscience of the Governor might be inextricably confused. Bills to regulate the local affairs of native districts, and provide for administration of justice therein, were introduced. Mr. C. W. Richmond made an elaborate speech on the 18th May, 1858, on the native question. It was separately printed, sent with his compliments to various friends and public men, and forwarded by Colonel Browne to the Secretary of State. There were three courses open to the Government: (1) To recognize native customs; (2) To enforce British law; (3) To insinuate, or induce the
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acceptance of British law. The first was not worthy of adoption. Of the second Mr. Richmond said: "All rational settlers are agreed that here in New Zealand it is neither humane nor possible. The third, which was "Sir George Grey's view," the Ministry would follow, avoiding his shortcomings. The labour was gigantic, but the British Government were bound in honour and conscience to perform it. The Maoris, moreover, were "a reasoning and a reasonable people ... by nature venerators of law . . . the structure of their society aristocratic, verging upon democratic. . . . They are not a people who brook despotic rule. They have always been accustomed to debate their affairs in popular assemblies. These are striking coincidences with the qualities which have ever distinguished the races from which we ourselves sprung--striking resemblances to the Teutonic peoples." Mr. Richmond read an Act passed by an assembly at Taupiri. "An assembly to consider whether pigs shall be fastened by the leg or conveyed to another place. After this assembly all pigs going at large or devouring crops may be caught. Any one who sees the pig may catch it. When a man has caught a pig at large or trespassing, he must go and inform the owner, and the owner shall pay him one sixpence, and fetch the pig that has been fastened." At Whaingaroa a law was declared to be "settled by the assessors of the Queen and the Governor." In Waikato alone six court-houses had been erected by the Maoris for the European magistrate. The natives were "anxious and prepared for some better system, such as we are proposing." One grave question remained. "Without a measure to promote the acquisition of individual titles, and accelerate the extinction of the native title, any native policy must be incomplete." Mr. Richmond acknowledged the deep obligation of the Government to the missionary body. "We have found amongst them our best counsellors and safest agents. We believe that the natives cannot be efficiently governed without their co-operation. We, at all events, have not attempted and shall not attempt to dispense with that co-operation." Alas,! for the shortsightedness of man. Mr. Richmond was honoured by many friends. His judgment was deemed sound; and yet within two short years he was found vigorously hostile to the ablest and most distinguished
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NATIVE DISTRICTS REGULATION BILL.
of the body whom he had lauded as the best of counsellors; while, to make the contrast more significant, the retired Chief Justice, Sir William Martin, combined with Bishop Selwyn to seek justice for the Maoris aggrieved by Richmond's advice.
Under the Native Districts Regulation Bill, the Governor in Council--not the Governor--was empowered to proclaim districts and make regulations. Amongst the enumerated powers were "the suppression of injurious native customs," and "ascertaining, prescribing, and providing for the observance and enforcement of the rights, duties, and liabilities amongst themselves of tribes, communities, or individuals of the native race in relation to the use, occupation, and receipt of the profits of land and hereditaments." As far as possible, general assent of natives was to be obtained as the Governor might think fit; but the word of promise thus graciously offered was counteracted by a provision that "the issue of any order in Council shall be conclusive proof of such general assent to any regulation thereby made." If the Governor could be induced to commit a wrong, Mr. Richmond and Mr. Whitaker deprived him of all power to retract. The subjugation of the Governor to his advisers was the battle-ground taken up in the Legislative Council against the Bill. Ever, where Mr. Richmond's name assumes prominence as adverse to Maori rights and disloyal to the word of the Queen, the reader may remember that the crafty Attorney-General was an unseen but potent accomplice. But vainly did Major Kenny, the Chief Justice, Mr. Swainson, and Colonel Wynyard oppose the Bill. The Attorney-General declared that the fate of the Ministry was involved in their measure. Chief Justice Arney demanded information. The Government must condescend to give particulars. He would not degrade himself to "a position something between a registration officer and a printer's devil." The Attorney-General produced voluminous papers, and carried his Bill on a subsequent day. A Bay of Islands Settlements Act was reserved for the Queen's pleasure, but powers were thrown upon the Governor and not upon his Council. The populous north, where the Ngapuhi dwelt, was more charily handled by his advisers than more distant places. But they carried through the House of Representatives an
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insidious measure to deprive the Maoris of the electoral franchise. They wished to annul all titles to land except grants from the Queen. As a step in that direction they provided that in future no man should vote except in right of property held by title derived from the Crown. But though the Representatives passed the clause the Council was neither so grasping nor obsequious. Swainson, the late Attorney-General, declared that "it would be better for the Governor of New Zealand to cut off his right hand than to give such a measure the sanction of his name." Colonel Browne reported that the obnoxious clauses were rejected, and the natives were left to "enjoy the electoral privileges conferred on them by the Imperial Parliament." The attempt to withdraw them was only one of a number of floating symptoms which showed how the European flood was rising, and the Maori was to have no rest for the sole of his foot. Earl Grey's attempt to evade the Waitangi Treaty was not forgotten. The Board appointed to investigate the land question in 1856 had recommended, and the Ministry desired, to sweep away Maori title and substitute grants from the Crown. And now, in the elected Assembly, a Bill had been passed which, but for Mr. Swainson and a few others in the Second Chamber, would have forcibly deprived the wealthiest Maori of the suffrage, unless he would crouch down and abandon his hereditary rights guaranteed by the Queen, and would submit to the arbitrary dictates of "the English Committee." Flesh and blood could hardly be cool under such circumstances, and Maoris were more careful of their honour than even of their flesh and blood. They had Pakeha friends who magnified the dangers. Old Rauparaha's son once declared at a great meeting, in set terms, that a white man, whom he named, was responsible for the disaffection which lurked in the Maori king movement, and the violence it produced. With his despatch narrating the failure of the attempt to deprive the Maoris of the franchise, the Governor forwarded lengthy minutes drawn up by Mr. C. W. Richmond and by Mr. McLean. Mr. Richmond's paper was dated 29th September, 1858, and contained seventy-one paragraphs. It was a code for the control of the Governor as well as of the natives. Colonel Browne sent his own comments with Mr. Richmond's paper. The latter described
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C. W. RICHMOND CONTEMNS MAORI RIGHTS.
the measures of the session of 1858, as "the first attempt of the colonists of New Zealand, in virtue of the powers of representative government now conceded to them, to grapple with the difficulties of the native question." The presence of increased military force would "greatly forward any efforts for the permanent amelioration of the condition" of the Maoris. He defended the "Native Territorial Rights Bill," which the Governor had reserved for the signification of Her Majesty's pleasure. The Governor was to be empowered to issue certificates of title to land to a tribe, community, or individual. Questions of title were to be determined by the Governor in Council. For alienation from Maoris to private Europeans, where permitted, the sum of ten shillings per acre was to be paid into the Treasury. The Governor was not to have power to grant more than 50,000 acres in one year, and his power was to cease in December, 1861. Mr Richmond's avowed object was to commute Maori titles into English fee-simple, and accelerate the extinction of the native title; and the Bill was a first step in that direction. Asseverating repeatedly that the Ministry had no desire to encroach upon, but merely to establish a conservative influence over, the Governor's policy, Richmond expressed a hope which he could hardly have entertained, that the Secretary of State would think the House of Representatives liberal and moderate. Donald McLean's protest against the Bill was recorded, and as it animadverted on a Draft Bill not passed, Mr. Richmond could not refrain from saying that the Native Secretary was "quite unjustified in referring to it." The pith of the matter may be gathered from one sentence, and the Governor's comment on it. Mr. Richmond sneered at the "right of the natives," to what was "really a gratuitous concession by the Government." The Legislature, he said, would "not trust Governor or Ministers, both together, with any such extravagant discretion as an unlimited power of granting away the Colonial territory in fee-simple." The Governor replied: "If the land of the Maoris can be shown to be 'colonial territory,' this remark might be admissible; but if the interpretation put upon the treaty of Waitangi by Her Majesty's Government be worth anything, the fallacy of the Treasurer's remarks is self-evident."
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McLean contended, "in contradistinction to the views of his Excellency's responsible advisers," that the Governor should retain control of native affairs. The natives understood the principle which the Governor's power involved. It was of "paramount importance" to maintain it. "It must be admitted," he said, "that the most harmonious relations now subsist between the two races . . . serious inconvenience would ensue from conceding to the representatives of the settlers the entire control of native affairs, nor is it believed that the continuance of the present friendly relations is at all contingent upon such a concession." Colonel Browne advocated the maintenance of the Governor's powers; and enclosed remarks and citations by the late Chief Justice Martin on the whole question. The New Zealanders had constantly resisted, even to blood, any encroachment on their territorial rights; and Mr. Martin declared that they were not "less disposed to resist now." The passage of the Territorial Rights Bill through the Legislative Council had been peculiar. The Governor wrote that he had in March, 1857, shown his Ministry a draft despatch to the Colonial Office recommending certain alterations in the Constitution Act. They wished him to withhold his despatch, and promised to introduce measures in the local legislature to effect the Governor's object--"to secure to individual natives by a Crown title lands belonging to themselves." He withdrew his despatch, but was surprised to find in the Bill prepared by his advisers restrictions to which he could by no means consent. He told them so. They persuaded him to let them inform the Legislative Council that he approved their other measures, and conceal his disapproval of the Territorial Rights Bill. The other Bills, thus vouched, were passed after severe debate; the Ministry threatening to resign if they were defeated. They withdrew this threat as to the Territorial Rights Bill, but still kept the Governor's disapproval out of sight. By one vote, in a House of thirteen members, the Bill passed in the Council with an amendment reserving it for Her Majesty's pleasure. Colonel Wynyard, commanding the forces; Major Richmond, formerly superintendent of New Munster; Major Kenny, commanding the New Zealand Fencibles; Mr. Swainson, formerly Attorney-General; Mr. Gilfillan, a merchant, and Mr. Harrison, a solicitor, voted
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against the Bill. The Chief Justice was absent from the division, but had spoken strongly against impairing the Governor's powers. A technical amendment was required to be made (under a provision which enabled Governors to suggest amendments in Bills which had passed both Houses), and Browne consented to recommend it on condition that the House should be informed of his objection, and his intention not to recommend that the Queen should assent to the measure. He gave this information in a message under his own hand to the House. There was some murmuring at the past concealment of the Governor's views, but the Bill passed through its last local ordeal. Mr. C. W. Richmond urged that it would have been unconstitutional to refer to the Governor's opinions earlier than he did: but as he had been careful to make known the Governor's approval of the other Bills, the excuse convinced no one. Colonel Browne kept his promise by recommending that the Queen's assent should not be accorded; and he warned the Secretary of State that if the Crown had insisted on a proprietary right to all unoccupied land when the Queen's authority was proclaimed, "it could only have been established by a war of extermination; and even now, if such a claim were openly preferred, there is scarcely a chief from the North Cape to Queen Charlotte's Sound who would not rise in arms against us, and feel it a duty to do so." The despatch which explained how the Ministry tricked the Assembly with the Governor's name was shown by him to his advisers, and they employed the Attorney-General (Whitaker) to draw up a memorandum impugning the Governor's statements; to the substantial accuracy of which the Governor nevertheless adhered, and was borne out by the memory of the Chief Justice (Arney). Mr. Whitaker only gibbeted himself by causing reference to his own speeches in which he earnestly represented that the Governor was in favour of the Bills. Soon after the passing of his measures, Mr. Richmond added to his own labours, and the dangers of the country, by assuming, in name as well as fact, the office of Minister for Native Affairs. Mr. Donald McLean's fears were destined to be justified at an early date.
The English Ministry which received Colonel Browne's despatches was that of Earl Derby, who had succeeded to power
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when Lord Palmerston seemed ready to change the law of England to please the pseudo-Napoleon. Placed in office by a majority of 157, Lord Palmerston was ejected by a majority of 19 for appearing to truckle to a crowned perjurer. Sir Edward Lytton was Colonial Secretary, and the Earl of Carnarvon as Under-Secretary answered Colonel Browne on the 18th May, 1859, shortly before the Derby Ministry was superseded by the ever-resilient and again popular Palmerston. In defiance of Colonel Browne's vigorous protest against subjecting the Governor to the Ministry on native questions, it would have been difficult for any Minister to approve the Territorial Rights Bill, and it was disallowed. Lord Carnarvon violated the maxim that he whose word is a command does wrong when he gives reasons. He coursed round about the question of Imperial responsibility, which could not at that moment be abandoned. He could not recommend that Her Majesty should assent to the Native Territorial Rights Bill. So far as it related to Maori titles he suggested, with a wonderful imperception of incongruity, that what was aimed at might better be secured by cautious enactment of rules respecting occupation of land, contemplated in the second section of the Act to regulate the local affairs of native districts. As the section related only to cattle trespass, about which the Governor in Council might make rules, it would have been difficult to make a worse suggestion. Titles to land were not within the purview of the section; and, if they had been, the contention between the Governor and his advisers about control of Maori affairs forbade the application of it in this case. The Maoris knew better than Lord Carnarvon the difference between their titles to land and the damage which a law of impounding could redress, and could not be favourably impressed by a recommendation that titles should be dealt with under a clause which was intended for a totally distinct purpose. They were wiser than Lord Carnarvon if he thought they could thus be duped; and to imagine that, not being duped, they would accept his proposal, was to betray on his part a simplicity vainly sought in them. However, the documents transmitted by the Governor and the conflicts of past years produced the needed effect. The military power requisite to enforce the measure, the tortuous method it proposed for undermining
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LAW OFFICERS ON MAORI RIGHTS.
Maori titles and enabling settlers to purchase lands, and its evident tendency to substitute local for Imperial control while yet large parliamentary grants were annually made, barred the measure from the Royal assent. Lord Carnarvon could not approve of the Native Districts Regulation Bill in its existing shape. It invested the Governor in Council with "virtual power" to make laws affecting "that remarkable race," the Maoris. It "omitted to secure to the Crown its customary right of disallowance." Loth to disallow the Act altogether, Lord Carnarvon left it to its operation so that the Legislature might amend it by enacting that regulations under it should be subject to disallowance by the Crown.
A matter much discussed in 1858 deserves separate mention. The representatives passed a resolution that the opinion of the British law officers should be asked for on the claims "preferred by aboriginal natives under the 7th and 42nd sections of the Constitution Act" to votes for members of parliament. Practically the opinion seemed unnecessary, for in one of the documents transmitted by the Governor for the consideration of the law officers it was stated that the "dangers attendant upon swamping the European constituencies" had been "got over by the very simple expedient" devised by the Ministry, of providing that "no estate should confer a qualification unless held or occupied by title derived from the Crown." In December, 1859, Sir Richard Bethell and Sir H. Keating gave their opinion. They did not refer to the treaty of Waitangi imparting "all the rights and privileges of British subjects" to all Maoris. With that technical slipperiness which can close the eye upon principle and open it wide upon expediency, they said that "freehold estate" and "leasehold estate" were "terms of art in English law," and supposed "the establishment of the English law of tenures." They decided that "natives cannot have such possession of any land used or occupied by them in common as tribes or communities, and not held under title derived from the Crown as would qualify them to become voters." For electoral purposes it was convenient to maintain the existence of a tribal right differing from English tenure. For other purposes it was often as convenient to reject it.
Lord Carnarvon's despatch disallowing the Native Territorial
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Rights Bill reached the Governor on the 16th July, 1859. About that time a member of the Auckland Provincial Council, Mr. Buckland, said, that settlers were called on for sacrifice, "to sympathy for the natives, and all that kind of humbug. The settlers had no room for their stock, and would be obliged to set Government at defiance. ... It was impossible to prevent the Anglo-Saxon overcoming the natives; and the Europeans, if they could not get the land with the consent, must get it without the consent, of the Government." The applause which this rant received might awaken suspicion that the wisest course which England could have adopted would have been to entrust a worthy Governor with power to deport any person whose stay was injurious to peace. Colonel Browne declared that the "immediate consequence of any attempt to acquire Maori lands without previously extinguishing the native title to the satisfaction of all having an interest in them, would be an universal outbreak, in which many innocent Europeans would perish, and colonization would be infinitely retarded, but the native race would be eventually extirpated."
While yet not abjectly under control of his wily advisers, and of influences brought privately to bear, Colonel Browne summed up his experience thus:--Besides mountain and forest there was in the North Island "some valuable land greatly in excess of all the possible wants" of the Maoris. "The Europeans covet these lands, and are determined to enter in and possess them,-- recte si possint, si non, quocunque modo. This determination becomes daily more apparent." 30 . . . "Whenever the pressure from without is sufficiently strong it is evident that a Ministry responsible to a popular assembly must and will yield. Add also the change of opinion necessarily consequent upon a change of Ministry, and it will be admitted that the Governor's advisers in Maori affairs should be responsible to the Crown and not to the Assembly." As the Governor "like other functionaries was liable to change," it was desirable that he should be assisted by a permanent Council for Native Affairs. This despatch was almost his final struggle for the right. It was like the last roll of the labouring ship before it is engulfed. As if unequal to the burden of the time, and unable to adhere to his pronounced
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THE GOVERNOR ON LUST FOR MAORI LANDS.
opinions, he sought advice outside as well as within his Ministry, and forwarded voluminous documents with his despatch. Mr. Sewell had quitted the Government in April, 1859, having then partly 31 prepared a Bill for promoting colonization. The Governor submitted Sewell's Bill to his Ministry in July. Under it the Governor was to be assisted by a Native Council. The Ministry denounced it. They had themselves prepared Bills:-- (1) to facilitate extinction of native rights and authorize grants to natives, and in certain cases to Europeans in native districts; (2) to provide for colonization of native districts; (3) to provide for the partition of native lands between native owners.
It is sufficient to say of these measures that the last affected to provide that a land register should be kept by a magistrate in his district; that any Maori wishing to have his land partitioned should apply to the magistrate, who should notify the application; and if within a given time no adverse claim should be delivered, or if adverse claims should have been made, the magistrate should then fix a day for hearing and decision. He might postpone or abstain from any decision; but if he should decide he was to define the boundaries of the lands of which he might make partition. No one familiar with the subject could doubt that such a measure was fraught with germs of strife.
Those who have studied the conduct of the Stafford Ministry in 1859, and the subsequent career of their crafty Attorney-General, can only by exercise of a charity which defies moral proofs acquit the Ministry of deep-laid plots to precipitate that strife. All the Bills conferred powers on the Governor in Council; and because the Maoris could have no confidence in that Council, the Governor reported his objection to all of them. Mr. Sewell's Draft Bill, on the other hand, contemplated the appointment of a Native Council appointed by the Crown, but removable by the Governor on address of both Houses. 32 Mr. C. W. Richmond as scribe for his colleagues declared such a Council inadmissible. The Governor asked for a permanent Council on native affairs composed of seven members, appointed by the Crown. Five should be nominated by the Governor;
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two might be nominated by the responsible Ministers. So oscillating were his ideas that though the text of his despatch contained this proposal, he appended a note declaring the expediency of it to be "somewhat doubtful." He urged that if such men as Bishop Selwyn and Dr. Martin could be induced to occupy unpaid seats in such a Council, "calumny would fall harmless and unheeded, while the presence of men so well known and so thoroughly trusted by the Maoris would secure to it an influence which no other European body could possibly acquire. 33 Even the insidious articles in the colonial press "headed 'extinction of the native race,' coupled with attacks on Sir George Grey and the native department," would be futile against such men. Coming events cast their shadows before; collision was inevitable unless remedial measures could be devised, and he begged that, as recommended by Dr. Martin and Mr. Swainson, the Parliament would intervene. If Imperial legislation should be refused, he asked that a Draft Bill to be submitted to the local Assembly might be prepared in England, and that he might be directed to transmit it to the Assembly by message. To support himself Colonel Browne sent (with Mr. Richmond's objections) written opinions from the Bishop, Dr. Martin, from the Assistant Native Secretary (in the absence of Mr. McLean, whose concurrence was known), from Mr. Swainson, from Archdeacon Kipling of Waitemata, from the Secretary of the Church Missionary Society, and from the Chairman of the Wesleyan Mission. As opposed to them he subsequently transmitted an elaborate document signed by nine persons, nearly all of whom were members of the Provincial Council of Auckland or of the General Assembly. They might not have deemed it necessary (they said) to address the Secretary of State on his disallowance of the Native Territorial Rights Bill if no reasons had been assigned. They audaciously expressed "fear that deep dissatisfaction would be engendered" among the Maoris because the Bill had not been assented to (a statement which the Governor contradicted, without thinking it
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THE GOVERNOR'S STRUGGLE TO DO RIGHT.
necessary to refer to the Maori Land League or to the king movement). They declared that the land law in operation had "notoriously failed." Colonel Browne retorted by pointing out that 32,000,000 acres had been acquired under it in the Middle Island at an almost nominal price, and about 7,000,000 or 8,000,000 of acres in the Northern Island. To Lord Carnarvon's assertion that the administration of native affairs had "been crowned with a very remarkable success," they rejoined that it had "been a remarkable failure;" and they declared that no infringement of the original understanding between the Governor and his Ministers as to Maori affairs had been attempted by the Assembly. They scouted the idea of a conflict with the Maoris, affirming peace to be "absolutely secure provided the natives be treated with justice, and deprived of none of their natural rights." Their lengthy document was refuted by comments of the Governor, and by a short but categorical contradiction by the Assistant Native Secretary, Mr. T. H. Smith, who denied the accuracy of their convictions as to facts, and the arguments based on them. In November, 1859, the Governor repeated that the only remedy for existing evils was the adoption of the plan he had urged two months before,--viz. the appointment by the Crown of a Native Council comprising such venerated names as those of Bishop Selwyn and Dr. Martin. But he had already been seduced into a career at Taranaki which would have marred their counsels. There, where the Pakeha lusted with more than common appetite for Maori goods, where feuds had so long rent the Maori mind, and where even the murderer Ihaia had been commended by the Provincial Council for "a friendly, honest character, which gained him a foremost place in the esteem of the settlers,"--Governor Brown had entered upon a path strewn with thorns and shame. He went thither in March, 1859, and was welcomed by Pakeha and Maori. The settlers thanked him for his "expressed anxiety to promote the further acquisition of land from the natives." He told them he would aid in that respect so far as he could do so "without compromising the neutrality which he had determined to observe in all native quarrels." He "found the settlers extremely anxious that favour should be shown to Ihaia." He declared his "firm
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determination to remain entirely neutral in this and all other native feuds, and to purchase no land without the consent of all who had a claim on it." Nevertheless he granted an annuity to Ihaia, declining "to interfere further in his favour." On the 8th March the Maoris met him. Te Rangitake was amongst them. Colonel Browne, through the mouth of the Native Secretary, announced that he would punish any violence committed by Maori or Pakeha within the European boundaries. The dwellers between those boundaries applauded. Te Rangitake, whose abode was elsewhere, remained silent. Donald McLean and C. W. Richmond were present; but the latter declared afterwards that he "was not there officially." A Maori named Teira (Taylor) offered to sell some land on the south bank of the Waitara; and, prompted by those who wished to entrap the Governor, "pressed for an immediate answer." The Governor replied that if a satisfactory title could be given he would "accept the offer." Another chief 34 objected, but when questioned, admitted that he had no claim to the land. "Te Rangitake then rose and, while admitting no claim to it, said he would never permit that land to be sold; then waving his hand to his people, he and they left the meeting with some want of courtesy to myself." The malign influence of his advisers was already working upon the man who had solemnly avowed his determination to "maintain inviolate the right of the Maoris to their land," had warned the Secretary of State against yielding power over native affairs to "gentlemen liable to the pressure of public opinion," and had in October, 1858, argued at great length against the elaborate memorandum drawn up by Mr. Richmond on Maori affairs. He wrote in March: "Any recognition of such a power as that assumed by Te Rangitake would be unjust to both races, because it would be the means of keeping millions of acres waste and out of cultivation. I have, however, little fear that he will venture to resort to violence to maintain his assumed right, and I have made every preparation to enforce obedience should he presume to do so." Such was
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THE GOVERNOR ABANDONS THE RIGHT.
the language in which Governor Browne reported an act which was in Maori eyes a renunciation by him of the treaty of Waitangi, and a declaration of war. In a later despatch (December, 1860) he more graphically described the scene. "Te Rangitake, before addressing the Governor, said to his people, 'I will only say a few words, and then we will depart,' to which they assented. He then said, 'Listen, Governor! Notwithstanding Teira's offer I will not permit the sale of Waitara to the Pakeha. Waitara is in my hands; I will not give it up: Ekore, Ekore, Ekore! (I will not, I will not, I will not.) I have spoken!' And turning to his tribe, added 'Arise, let us go;' whereupon he and his followers abruptly withdrew." Colonel Browne's conduct after this occurrence was absolutely irreconcilable with all his previous assurances to the Home Government and his contentions with his Ministry. All were acquainted with Te Rangitake's claims. The Government possessed a letter written by him to Captain Fitzroy in June, 1844, declaring: "This is the determination of our people Waitara shall not be given up. . . ." Nay, more, lest it should be thought that so old a letter might have escaped recollection or have been unknown to Browne, there was a letter written by Te Rangitake to Browne himself (11th February, 1859) a few days before the scene with Teira. In that document he defined the boundaries within which he objected to alienation of land. "These lands will not be given by us into your hands, lest we become like the birds of the sea which are resting on a rock. When the tide flows, that rock is covered by the sea. The birds fly away because there is no resting-place for them. . . . My word is not a new word; it is an old word. Governor Hobson heard it; Governor Fitzroy, and Governor Grey; and when you came, O Governor Browne, my word was still the same. You, O Mr. McLean, are aware of that word of mine at the time of your first arrival here, when you saw me. The same was the word to you. I will not give you the land."
Mr. Richmond, and even Mr. McLean, afterwards asserted that when Teira threw a mat at the Governor's feet in token of parting with his land, Te Rangitake was bound, by Maori usage, to pick it up if he objected to the sale. Such a plea needs no confutation. His protest could not have been more
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forcible than it was. It was made to the Governor, not to his clansman, and his words were clear1 That Colonel Browne understood Te Rangitake's dissent was made clear 35 by a passage in a despatch (29th March), narrating the occurrence, and saying that he had "made every preparation to enforce obedience." These preparations the Ministry not only approved, but instigated. The Governor had no funds at his own control for the coercion of Maoris. He had admirers, who denied that he yielded to pressure. They said he was inflexible. But a man may be determined without arrogating a faculty of solving questions of ownership of land, and it was adroitly made to appear to him that the Queen's supremacy was involved. After arriving at such a conclusion the duty of the soldier was clear to the Governor's mind, and he pounced upon his quarry. Mr. Richmond averred in 1878, that he "attended the meeting merely as a spectator, and that, in his belief, only two Europeans in New Plymouth" knew of Teira's intention to offer the block. He adds: "The Governor turned to McLean and asked if he would accept the block. McLean said, 'Yes, your Excellency, I think so.' The Governor then spoke to me, asking, 'What do you say, Richmond?' I replied, 'Certainly, sir, if there is a good title.' Then Teira was allowed to advance, and laid a mat at the Governor's feet." In the same paper Mr. Richmond scouted the idea that it was reserved for Sir George Grey's agents to discover in 1863 that Rangitake's friends were resident on the block when Colonel Browne accepted it. "Everybody knew there were pahs. 36 . . . Bell and I wrote an explanation showing that Te Rangitake's small pah was put up by the consent of the selling party." Only mental hallucination
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THE WAITARA BLOCK.
can account for the supposition that Mr. Richmond's explanation relieves him from moral, even if unintentional, responsibility for the seizure of the block. He was appealed to by the Governor before the latter allowed Teira to make formal tender of the land. He was, with Whitaker, 37 consulted as a lawyer on the matter; and he knew that there were pahs on the land. Nevertheless, no steps were taken to adhere to what the Native Minister in 1863 (Mr. F. D. Bell) declared was the "almost invariable practice," i.e. to "name the reserves in any deeds of sale." It is fair to consider Mr. Richmond's explanation, but it is necessary to decide that it in no way exculpates him. Donald McLean was an accomplice in the crime. He had in 1844 reported the good effect of Fitzroy's reversal of Spain's award. He had seen Te Rangitake's letter to Fitzroy, declaring, in 1844, that Waitara should not be sold. He knew the tenacity of Te Rangitake to the land, and the causes of that tenacity. He had in 1858 aided Colonel Browne in resisting the encroachment of the Ministry upon the functions of the Governor with regard to Maori affairs; but he had found the masters of the purse too strong for an officer in his dependent position. His previous experience and principles were abandoned in 1859. He afterwards, on plea of indisposition, left negotiation to Mr. Parris; but there were some who hinted that he wished to avoid complicity in a matter which, in his heart, he knew to be wrong.
According to a high local authority there were, in addition to general reasons which prompted Te Rangitake to cling to his land, other causes which excited him, and prompted Teira. There was a deathbed prayer to Te Rangitake from his father. There was a Maori Helen who had been false to Teira's brother. Dr. Featherston thus spoke in the New Zealand Parliament: "I venture to predict that when Her Majesty's Government learn the facts of the present case--when they learn that the war originated in a grudge entertained by Teira against his chief--that because a native girl jilted Teira's brother and married Te Rangitake's son, Teira swore that he would have his revenge--that knowing that Te Rangitake had given a
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solemn pledge to his father not to sell Waitara, but to keep it for an inheritance for the Ngatiawas, Teira resolved to satisfy his revenge by selling Waitara to the Government;--when they know that, of the 600 acres offered by Teira and purchased by the Government, only a small portion really belonged to Teira--that the greatest portion is owned by natives who have either protested against the sale, or have never been consulted in the matter--that no investigation worthy of the name has ever been instituted into their claims;--when, sir, the Home Government learn these facts, if they have not already learnt them, I venture to predict that their answer to his Excellency's application for troops will be, that those who have been guilty, while acting in Her Majesty's name, of so great a wrong, who have plunged the country into such a war, are no longer worthy of Her Majesty's confidence; and that, instead of reinforcements, Her Majesty's Government will send out peremptory instructions to bring the war to a close, and to prevent any further shedding of blood in so unjust a cause." If the Lord Stanley of 1843 had ruled in Downing Street in 1866, these hopes might have been fulfilled. Dr. Featherston's was an honoured name in New Zealand. He had been Superintendent at Wellington (which he represented when he spoke), had filled many important posts; and he died at last in harness in London, as Agent-General for the colony of New Zealand.
Unconscious of the gravity of the situation, Colonel Browne, at the conclusion of his first despatch on the subject, told the Secretary of State: "I venture to think that my visit to Taranaki has been useful. ... If the land now under negotiation can be obtained legitimately, and without breach of Maori ideas of right, I have little doubt that other tracts of land will be offered for sale, and I shall thus be able to satisfy the demands of all moderate men among the settlers." He forgot that he had recently been compelled to tell the Taranaki Provincial Council that he could not favour their "proposal to coerce a minority of native proprietors who might be disinclined to sell their land," and after an experience of years he fondly fancied that Te Rangitake was not in earnest. Yet the acquisition of land had been the one absorbing subject at Taranaki. A resident, who
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THE WAITARA BLOCK.
published a narrative in 1861, declared: "The most frequent topic of discussion with both natives and Europeans was about the land; and the boasting assertion was continually made by the latter, 'The Waitara will be ours before long!" When a skilled witness testified thus, the Government might have been expected to foresee the consequence of their conduct. But they were impenetrably crass, or ruthlessly unjust. From Auckland the Assistant Native Secretary wrote to Te Rangitake (2nd April, 1859), that Teira's land would be bought by the Governor. "The Governor's rule is for each man to have the word about his own land: that of a man who has no claim will not be listened to. This is merely written to let you know the word of the Governor in answer to Te Teira's and Te Retimana's letter." Te Rangitake's own letter refusing to sell was set aside. The resolute chief wrote to the Governor (25th April, 1859): "Friend, salutations to you. Your letter has reached me about Te Teira's and Te Retimana's thoughts. I will not agree to our bedroom being sold (I mean Waitara here), for this bed belongs to the whole of us; and do not you be in haste to give the money. Hearken to my word. If you give the money secretly, you will get no land for it. You may insist, but I will never agree. Do not suppose that this is folly on my part; no, it is true. ... I have no new proposal to make, either as regards selling or anything else. All I have to say to you, O Governor, is, that none of this land will be given to you--never, never, not till I die. I have been told that I am to be imprisoned. . . . I am very sad because of this word. Why is it? You should remember that the Pakehas and the Maoris are living quietly upon their pieces of land, and therefore do not disturb them. . . ."
It has been mentioned that when Te Rangitake returned with his tribe from the south, there was some apprehension that the Ngatimaniapoto tribe might again invade the territory. Mr. Gorst thus tells the story: "It was therefore agreed by the whole tribe that instead of Te Rangitake settling on the north bank of the Waitara, where his own possessions were, the whole tribe should live together upon Teira's land, on the south bank, for mutual protection against the common foe. It was in consequence of this arrangement that Te Rangitake originally
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established himself on Teira's land 38 (hereafter it will be seen that the land was not Teira's), where he laid out cultivations, and built substantial houses. There they all lived happily together, until disturbed by the accursed land feuds, which caused perpetual dissension amongst them. At length Teira, out of spite to Te Rangitake, sold Waitara to the Government, the effect of this sale being to turn the latter suddenly, and without compensation, off land which he had considerably improved by building and cultivation, and which, under the original agreement, he had certainly an equitable right to hold. It seems quite incredible that circumstances so material to the case should have escaped the notice of the officials concerned in the purchase, and have remained undiscovered for three years, until they were accidentally found out by Sir George Grey's interpreter, in private conversation with the Waitara natives. The facts were certainly unknown, not only to Governor Browne, but even to Te Rangitake's advocates. It will be readily believed that, had the Governor been informed of a circumstance so material, the Waitara block would never have been purchased." Mr. Gorst judged the Governor's advisers leniently. Mr. Richmond knew and wrote about the Maori occupants of the Waitara block, but averred that they would be dealt with by reservations in the customary manner. They were, nevertheless, not provided for in the deed. Mr. Parris (July, 1860) reported that the land sold by Teira had never been cultivated by Te Rangitake's people, and may thus have misled the Governor; but the claim which Te Rangitake had made from 1839 to 1859 rested on higher grounds than a permissive tenant right. It was known that no nation on earth paid more sacred reverence to the burial-ground of their ancestry than the Maoris; and the vow of Te Rangitake to his father was rooted in his mind, with the traditions of his people. Such feelings deserved respect, though it might be difficult to define them.
There was much dispute about the meaning of the term
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THE WAITARA BLOCK.
"mana," which was variously interpreted as seignorial, manorial, or feudal. Some Europeans were so ignorant as to declare that it was borrowed from the English idea of sovereignty. That some control was recognized as residing in the principal chief, was known in the time of Mr. Spain, who, in 1844, found Rauparaha's dissent omnipotent as to a purchase contemplated at Ohau near Otaki, and abandoned it in consequence. Moreover, part of the claim of the English at Taranaki was founded on the purchase by Governor Hobson of Te Whero Whero's rights, accruing to him as a conquering chief, and based on no occupation of the land. But Colonel Browne's good genius was silenced, and he was enmeshed in the sinister designs of others. He was supplied in due time, by Mr. C. W. Richmond, with reasons for the course adopted; reasons which can be accounted for, but not justified, on the plea of ignorance. Chief Justice Arney said in the Legislative Council: "Little as I know of the native title of the so-called Maori law of real property, the generality of people, even of the learned--the periti--know little more." But looming large over all scattered doubts, Governor Browne and his advisers had the opinion of the Board of Inquiry into Native Affairs in 1856; and the man must have been mad, or full of dangerous designs, who, in defiance of that opinion, could urge the Governor to set aside the claims of Te Rangitake to a voice in the disposal of tribal lands. They examined many witnesses--they were experts themselves--and they said: "Each native has a right in common with the whole tribe over the disposal of the land of the tribe, and has an individual right to such portions as he or his parents may have regularly used for cultivations, for dwellings, for gathering edible berries, for snaring birds or rats, or as pig runs. This individual right does not amount to a right of disposal to Europeans as a general rule. . . . Generally, there is no such thing as an individual claim clear and independent of the tribal right. The chiefs exercise an influence in the disposal of the land, but have only an individual claim, like the rest of the people, to particular portions."
No one could deny the claims of Te Rangitake. Mr. Spain spoke of him in 1844 as "the principal young chief of the place," at Waiwetu; and on the return of the Ngatiawa to their ancestral homes and consecrated grounds he was the leader
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acknowledged alike by Pakeha and Maori. A paper drawn up at the Governor's request, and signed by Mr. C. W. Richmond on behalf of the Ministry, thus spoke of Rangitake: "William King was one of the Ngatiawa who had retired to Cook's Straits, whence he returned to Taranaki in 1848. Though a well-born chief his land claims are not considerable, and lie chiefly if not wholly to the north of Waitara." Mr. Richmond did not affect ignorance of the cultivation by Te Rangitake's people of land south of Waitara, for he wrote at the time: "Te Rangitake has been joined by a number of natives, who have gathered about him since his settlement at Waitara, and these men have encroached with their cultivations upon the proper owners. This has been a source of dissension, and one reason determining the settlers to part with their land." Mr. Gorst's apology for the Governor's ignorance makes darker the conduct of his advisers; and yet, with such a formal document presented to him in April, 1860, there was still room for honourable escape from the false position into which he had been hurried. But he would not avail himself of it. He abandoned himself to the guidance of advisers desirous to raise a feud between Pakeha and Maori, and one of whom Mr. C. W. Richmond, as regarded the title to the lands, thus echoed in the General Assembly in August, 1860, the rapacious clamour of the Taranaki settlers: "Sir, I know nothing about 'mana,' and I don't care to know anything. ... I say I know nothing of Maori 'mana,' and in the present case I care nothing about it. I only know that we have hitherto dealt without let or hindrance from any lord of the manor with the various families and groups of families which make up the Ngatiawa tribe. ... Te Rangitake's title (if he had the best of the world) is merged in his rebellion. At all events it will be time to hear him when he submits to the jurisdiction. . . . We did not mean to buy unless with the consent of all. But suppose that through their own contumacy, or say even through our own neglect, some are left out, what does common sense tell us is substantial justice? I say substantial justice is partition; and if they can't agree among themselves their boundaries ought to be settled for them by a higher power." On a later day his brother and supporter, Mr. J. C. Richmond, declared that he agreed with the statements of the Taranaki Provincial Council,
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THE GOVERNOR URGES THE PURCHASE.
(which Governor Browne had condemned as an attempt "to coerce a minority of the natives into selling their lands,") and went so far as to declare that "years of weak government had made the storm unavoidable," and that "it was well perhaps to have the war come whilst the settlers' eyes were open." 39
It was not known at the time, but was ascertained afterwards, that the Governor, having assumed the position of land-purchaser, personally pushed the matter forward. Parris having reported that the purchase could not be safely completed in the face of opposing claims, Colonel Browne wrote (27th August, 1859): "Instructions should be sent to Taranaki to close the purchase of Teira's land, which was commenced when I was there, without delay if possible. There is little chance of Mr. McLean reaching Taranaki for some time." Mr. Richmond's claws were shown at the same date. He wrote to Parris: "The Governor is very anxious about the completion of the purchase from Teira. I am sure you will press the matter as fast as appears prudent. It will satisfy his Excellency if, without writing officially, you will let me hear privately how the matter stands. I have been in hopes that Mr. McLean's visit would effect something, but he delays so long. . . . The Governor feels pledged to effect the purchase." Against such influences what could Parris do? He
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had warned the Government privately and publicly, but could not arrest its course. Against such a plotter how could Governor Browne be armed? Only on the ground that he had become docile to his tempters can his conduct be accounted for. Parris himself was well aware that undue influence was brought to bear against Te Rangitake by the English friends of Ihaia. A letter from Parris to Bishop Selwyn, dated 26th August, 1858, was produced in the General Assembly, containing these words: "Lest I should be charged with partiality to natives of that denomination, because I refuse to support or countenance dishonourable and treacherous treatment of Te Rangitake and his people, to exterminate them from the Waitara in accordance with Mr. Turton's peremptory plan for the acquirement of that delightful and much-coveted district."
Mr. Turton and his sympathizers found in 1859 the machinery with which to work their will, and Parris, pushed on by desire to please the Governor, the Native Minister, the Attorney-General, the Taranaki Provincial Council and settlers, pursued the course which a year before he had called "dishonourable and treacherous." Free from pressure, he might have found out or induced others to weigh those facts which Sir George Grey exposed in 1863, and which established Te Rangitake's occupying as well as tribal rights. He might without much trouble have ascertained, as a Court of Justice afterwards ascertained, that as compared with those of Te Rangitake the claims of Teira were but as dust in the balance. In after years a decision on a celebrated case (of the Rangitiki-Manawatu block) proved conclusively that according to well-known Maori usage--and the treaty of Waitangi guaranteed to the chiefs and tribes all such usages--Rangitake's people, settled by consent of the tribe on the south of the Waitara river, acquired rights of ownership by the fact of settlement, even if no previous' tribal rights existed, as they were admitted to exist at Waitara. The judgment of the Court was, after many weeks of trial, pronounced by no less an authority than Mr. Maning, the author of 'Old New Zealand.' But it was not pronounced until 1869, and long before that time the flower of New Zealand warriordom had fallen in the war begun at Waitara, or had been expelled from desolated hearths. Such a trial as that of the Rangitiki-Manawatu claims was all that
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ILL-TREATMENT OF RANGITAKE.
Bishop Selwyn, the ex-Chief Justice, and other friends of the Maoris demanded for the case at Waitara, but their petitions were set aside. It will be seen hereafter that when, not intentionally but incidentally, a Government afforded an opportunity for the eye of the law to be fixed upon the case, the rights which Mr. Richmond and his colleagues had spurned were shown to be incontestable. Te Rangitake was referred to Mr. Parris, but having addressed himself to the Queen's representative would not make any application to Parris, in whom he saw only the tool of the Maori-hating faction at Taranaki, and of C. W. Richmond, a member of that faction and of the Government. Mr. Gorst declares that no record was preserved of the investigation into Teira's title. But the debates in the New Zealand Legislature tell something of the situation. Te Rangitake understood the proceeding as an attempt to fasten a quarrel upon him. In July, 1859, he wrote to Archdeacon Hadfield (the friend whom he aided in protecting the colonists in 1843): "Mr. Parris has lifted up his heel against me. This is what he said to me, 'Naku koe i ora ai' 40 Recently his word has been revealed that I am to be taken prisoner because I withhold the land, inasmuch as the withholding of land is in their estimation the greatest of offences, and for this reason is bruited about the opinion of all the Europeans that I am the worst of men. I am not able to discover wherein consists my guilt. If I had taken any land belonging to Europeans then my fault would have been proved, or if I had insulted any European then my accusation would have been just. But they are bringing guilt to me (or, are forcing me to become a guilty man). . . . Great is the obduracy of this Pakeha (Parris). His word has been reported to me that I am to be shot and buried, not in the burial-place but outside in the cultivations, with the burial of an ass. ... I thought you might have influence with the Governor and Mr. McLean to cause Parris' proceedings to be stopped with reference to the Waitara." But Mr. Richmond was as obdurate
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as Parris. On the 25th November, 1859, the latter told Te Rangitake that he intended to pay Teira a portion of the purchase-money. He invited Te Rangitake to meet Teira to discuss the matter. With some thirty armed followers the chief attended on the 29th November. Parris said the discussion was conducted in a very orderly manner, in presence of a large number of Europeans. As Richmond and his friends affected to justify their conduct by alleging the absence of proof of title by Te Rangitake at this meeting, Parris' report of it, with the commentary of Mr. Forsaith, long and well acquainted with Maori language and custom, deserve to be recorded. "Te Rangitake," Mr. Parris wrote, "avowed his determination to oppose the sale, without advancing any reason for so doing. Upon which I put a series of questions to him, which I called upon the Rev. Mr. Whiteley (Wesleyan missionary) to witness.
"'Q. Does the land belong to Teira and party?--A. Yes, the land is theirs, but I will not let them sell it. 41
"'Q. Why will you oppose their selling what is their own?-- A. Because I do not wish that the land should be disturbed; and though they have floated it, I will not let it go to sea.
"'Q. Show me the correctness or justice of your opposition.-- A. It is enough. Parris, their bellies are full with the sight of the money you have promised them, but don't give it to them.
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If you do, I wont let you have the land, but will take it and cultivate it myself.'
"Teira stops in town since he received the instalment, considering it not safe to stop at Waitara."
In August, 1860, Mr. Forsaith said in the House at Auckland: "I stake my reputation for some little acquaintance with the native language and mode of expression upon the assertion that the question and answer are perfectly compatible with the existence of a claim on the part of Te Rangitake. . . . Those acquainted with native customs will, I am sure, bear me out in the assertion, that, in saying that the land was Teira's, Te Rangitake did not necessarily thereby admit that he had no claim to it. Had the question been followed by another, something to this effect--'Do you mean that it belongs to Teira and his party only, or have you any claim to this land?'--we should probably be in a better position for arriving at a conclusive opinion. This is the only trace I can find of a scrutiny, and this modicum of evidence is the only proof of that rigid investigation which we are told was extended over a period of eight months. I must now refer to Te Rangitake's own account of the transaction contained in a private letter written after the payment of the money. It is dated 5th December, 1859. I quote the following extracts: 'Friend, listen to me, this is my saying, that you may explain to me the policy of the new Governor. I heard from Mr. Parris on the occasion of my going to town to prevent the money of the Governor being given for Waitara (£100). I said to him (Parris), "Friend, keep your money." He answered me, "I will not." I replied, "There will be no land upon which your money can alight."' The word in the original is very significant -- 'taunga.' I don't recollect ever seeing it used in this sense before. It means the fluttering of a bird over the spot on which it is about to perch. 'Upon which he (Mr. Parris) answered, "This is wrong. When the Governor comes it will be very wrong."' It is difficult to say whether there is not an implied threat here: the original might perhaps without violence be rendered thus: 'This is very wrong, and so you will find it when the Governor comes.' 'I replied, "Be it so. It is for you to bring me the wrong, i.e. you must be the aggressor. Enough for me, I keep the land." I also said to him, "Land that
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is obdurate (pakeke), i.e. disputed land, the Governor is not desirous of having." He replied, "That was formerly, but now the Governor has a new method." My belief is, the Governor is seeking to quarrel, as he is putting death before me. Therefore I ask you to enlighten me, as you have perhaps heard of the Governor's new method or policy. . . . Listen, the land will not be given up by me. If the Governor without cause attacks me, and I am killed, then there will be no help for it, because it is an old saying, "the man first, the land afterwards," i.e. first kill, and then take possession. Therefore I make known my words to you, that you may quietly understand my offence, and also the offence of all the Europeans, of Mr. Parris, of Mr. Whiteley, of the Governor. They say this piece of land belongs only to Teira. But it is not so; it belongs to us all--to the orphans and widows this piece of land belongs.'"
Volumes have been written, weeks have been spent in discussing the origin of the Taranaki war; but, after all, it is best understood by study of this letter from the Maori chief. He might not be able to name the chief conspirator, but he knew that guilt was being brought to his door.
Mr. Forsaith illustrated the case from his own experience. In 1839 he wished to buy land on the Wairoa river, in the Kaipara district. "Preliminaries were all settled, and price arranged, when opportunely I had a visit from a friend who had been longer in the country than myself. Hearing of my intended purchase, he advised me before parting with the payment to question the sellers closely on the point, whether they knew of the existence of any native whose consent to the sale would be necessary to secure my quiet possession." Mr. Forsaith, hearkened to the advice. The sellers (Tirarau and Paikea) arrived to "conclude the bargain. The payment was ready, and they were anxious to sign the deed. I put the question. At first there was a dead silence; then, with many shrugs of the shoulder, the evasive answer, 'How can we tell?' I was now satisfied that I was on the right scent, and gathering up the payment, I made a show of terminating the negotiation. It then came out that the consent of a woman living at Kaihu a relative of Tirarau, was necessary. I postponed the conclusion of the bargain. ... On arriving at her residence I found
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DUKE OF NEWCASTLE'S MISCONDUCT.
to my astonishment that she knew all about, the transaction. She said, 'I am glad you came to see me. I shall give my consent, but if you had bought that land without asking my permission I should have gone and turned you off.' I asked what portion of the payment I was to reserve for her. She replied, 'I do not claim any portion of the payment; but if you please you can make me a present.' The purchase was subsequently effected, and I never afterwards heard of a single objection to my title. . . . The piece of land is now the principal commercial station on the Wairoa."
This Mr. Forsaith adduced as a proof of the existence of "mana" in New Zealand, and declared that Mr. C. W. Richmond, "in pooh-poohing it, was arraying himself not only against a principle which, however ill-defined and uncertain, does nevertheless obtain, but also against the policy of former Governments, which in many instances have recognized and acted on the admission of this principle."
The Duke of Newcastle acknowledged and approved the Governor's report of his proceedings in March, 1859. After the occurrences on the 29th November, 1859, the Governor (25th January, 1860) reminded the Duke that his Taranaki measures had been approved in England. He described Mr. Parris's conduct, and stated that he had "directed the land to be surveyed in the usual manner. Rumours have reached me that the survey will be interrupted by the chief Te Rangitake (who has evidently been advised by some disaffected persons), and that difficulties may ensue. I do not put much faith in these rumours, or anticipate resistance, when the natives see that, though always ready to consider every reasonable objection, I am not the less determined to enforce Her Majesty's right to deal with her own subjects without hindrance from any one not having a legitimate interest in the transaction. I have, however, taken every precaution, and made preparation for every contingency which may arise." On the same day Richmond himself told Parris that "with the advice of the Executive Council" (ominous words), the Governor had determined that the survey of the land should be proceeded with without further delay. An unarmed party was to go to the ground, but the survey was to be notified beforehand. "Should resistance be
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made the survey party will quietly retire, and you are then to intimate to Lieutenant-Colonel Murray that the assistance of a military force has become necessary. Military possession of the block will thereupon be taken and kept by the forces . . . and the survey is to be prosecuted under the protection of the troops."
It would seem incredible, were not the documents still extant, that while telling the Secretary of State that he anticipated no resistance, the Governor signed (on the same day) a proclamation of martial law. "Whereas active military operations are about to be undertaken by the Queen's forces against natives in the province of Taranaki in arms against Her Majesty's authority, now I, the Governor, do hereby proclaim and declare that martial law will be exercised throughout the said province from publication hereof, within the province of Taranaki, until relief of the said district from martial law by public proclamation" (25th January, 1860). Bad in the original, the edict became worse in the Maori version promulgated at Taranaki.
Mr. Forsaith in August, 1860, read it in the Parliament at Auckland. "Whereas the natives of the Queen are just about to begin their work against the natives of Taranaki who are disobedient, and are fighting against the Queen's authority; therefore I, the Governor, do proclaim and publish abroad this word. The law of fighting is now to appear at Taranaki, and remain in force until countermanded" (25th January, 1860). "Who can tell," said the speaker, "how far this document operated to encourage the interference of the Ngatiruanui, who were in no wise concerned in the original dispute? . . . I hold the Government accountable for this outrageous announcement, which, in point of fact, amounts to a declaration of war on the 25th January." 42
The plot which was to "bring guilt to the door" of Te Rangi-
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RAPE OF THE WAITARA.
take was complete in every particular when the Governor wrote to the Secretary of State. Transmitting a copy of the proclamation to that functionary, he said: "I trouble your Grace with the present despatch only as a matter of information, and trust it may not be necessary to refer to it again." His next despatch (27th February) announced that, "contrary to his expectations, the chief Te Rangitake had resisted the survey of the land." No violence had been offered. Women had defeated the survey party. 43 The Governor was mustering forces, and going in person to the scene of action. After the stoppage of the survey, Colonel Murray wrote to Te Rangitake, saying that he must occupy the disputed land with soldiers unless resistance was abandoned; but that he was most anxious that there should be peace, and that the chief should cease to rebel. The answer was decided. ..."You say that we have been guilty of rebellion against the Queen, but we consider that we have not, because the Governor has said he will not entertain offers of land which are disputed. The Governor has also said that it is not right for one man to sell land to Europeans, but that all the people should consent. You are now disregarding the good law of the Governor, and adopting a bad law. This is my word to you. I have no desire for evil, but, on the contrary, have great love for the Europeans and Maoris. Listen; my love is this. You and Parris put a stop to your proceedings, that your love for the Europeans and Maoris may be true. I have heard that you are coming to Waitara with soldiers; and therefore I know that you axe angry with me. Is this your love for me, to bring soldiers to Waitara? This is not love; it is anger. I do not wish for anger; all that I want is the land. All the Governors and the Europeans have heard my word, which is, that I will hold the land. That is all. Write to me. Peace be with you." Before leaving Auckland the Governor by letters to the Maori king and to other chiefs threw the blame of the dispute on Te Rangitake.
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On the 1st March he reached Taranaki and sent for the chief, offering him a written promise of safety. Mr. Whiteley and Messrs. Parris and Rogan carried the offer, and conferred with the chief, who promised to announce his decision on the following day. The Governor's pledge was thus worded: "I hereby pledge my word that Te Rangitake, and any reasonable number of his followers, who may choose to come to New Plymouth unarmed and converse with me, shall be allowed to return unharmed and in freedom to the place from whence they came. This promise shall be good from this day (1st March) until the night of the 3rd March, 1860." On the 2nd he wrote: "Friend Governor, I received your message requesting me to go to town to see you. . . . Listen. In days gone by things were different from what they are now. I could then have gone to town to see you; but now I am afraid of your force, because you have brought soldiers with you to the town, and therefore I think you are angry with me." He was still anxious for peace, and asked if the Governor would come to the Kaipakopako "where we can see each other." His suspicions were not unnatural. One Governor had seized Rauparaha by stealth, and Colonel Browne himself had granted an amnesty to the acknowledged murderer of Katatore. The Governor (2nd March) told the Duke of Newcastle that Te Rangitake's letter was nothing but a mockery and a subterfuge, to obtain time till assistance could be got. He "still had hopes of being able to avoid bloodshed." On the 3rd March he directed Colonel Gold (65th Regiment) to take possession of the land, and proposed that a block-house should be built in a commanding position. Collision was to be avoided, if possible, because Maoris attached much importance to the first blood shed; and many tribes would join the chief in demanding "utu" if he could show that he had not been the aggressor. Settlers at Tataraimaka were summoned to Taranaki, and block-houses were built on the north and on the south of the latter place.
Mr. Richmond was informed by Mr. Turton (Te Rangitake's old opponent) that help was looked for from Waikato, but that if blood were shed the Taranaki natives would fight for Rangitake at once. That chief in one night built a pah and stopped an escort. On the 6th March the Governor peremptorily told
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RAPE OF THE WAITARA.
him to destroy the pah and cease to block up the road. Firing would commence in twenty minutes unless the order were obeyed. The pah was evacuated and was immediately burnt by the troops. Browne reported that it contained traverses, and was "extraordinarily well designed." On the 13th and 14th March the boundaries of the Waitara disputed land were surveyed under military protection. On the night of the 15th Rangitake built a pah on the land, and, on the following day, pulled up the surveyors' pegs and made fires along the line. Colonel Gold with twenty-four-pound howitzers proceeded to attack the pah at the head of a strong force, on the 17th-- summoning its garrison thus, in a note borne by Mr. Parris: "Misguided people, your pah is invested. Surrender at once, or I will commence to fire on you. Though your offence is great, the Governor will be merciful to you if you surrender. If I fire upon you your fate is sealed." The Maoris refused to read or to receive the summons. Fire was opened, and continued throughout the day with guns and rockets. The Maoris returned it with musketry, and three Europeans were wounded dangerously. The troops lay down on their arms at night in their entrenchments, and the Maori firing was continued for some hours. In the morning the guns were advanced under cover of skirmishers, and when a sufficient breach was thought to have been made, the troops pushed forward and found that the pah was empty. The usual ditch behind the palisade was found, with covered trenches well traversed, and the Governor reported with dismay that a fortification put up in one night and garrisoned by only seventy Maoris "occupied the troops two days to capture and destroy. A storm of shot and shell did scarcely any execution, and finally it was evacuated with trifling loss." The work of the Governor's tempters had been well done. The British Government had been made an accomplice in the evil designs of the Taranaki settlers. The quarrel had been baptized in blood. And now the soldiers, the Governor, and the civilians, began to reflect upon the situation. 44 Colonel Gold at Waitara said
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that his force was too weak. His Excellency must strenuously urge the Home Government to send artillery, engineers, and infantry. Brevet-Colonel Murray, at Taranaki, pronounced that settlement indefensible. There ought to be at least 1200 men in the province. Donald McLean, whose indisposition of mind or body had left to others the conduct of the ill-omened land dispute "carefully chosen" by the Ministry as a battle-ground between Maori and Pakeha, declared that 5000 men at least were required in the Northern Island. The Ngatiruanui and Taranaki tribes were believed to be about to attack Taranaki. They were 1200 strong, and the powerful Waikatos, he feared, might join the affray in order to work out their national independence. Mr. C. W. Richmond gave a written
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GOVERNOR WANTS MORE TROOPS.
adhesion to Mr. McLean's opinion. The Governor found that his assurance to the Secretary of State that he had made preparations for all contingencies was an empty boast. He cried to the Australian colonies for help, and told the Secretary of State that a much larger number of troops than had before been asked for was "necessary to maintain possession of the colony at all." He must have troops, "a steam gun-boat, and a steamer of war." The skill of the Maoris in field fortification was "surprising and most admirable." As to the cause of quarrel, he defended his past conduct, and urged that even if the right of "mana" existed, Te Rangitake could not hold it, as Te Whero Whero had sold his feudal superiority obtained by conquest. He either did not comprehend the nature of tribal right or was determined to disregard it. He anticipated the approval of the Secretary of State, and on the 27th June the Duke of Newcastle conveyed it to him. Troops would be sent if further advices should show necessity, and thanks were given to the militia and volunteers for their zeal and alacrity.
Colonel Browne's despatches ought to have enabled the Duke to see the truth. But he was blind. He spoke of "the insurrection" of the Maoris, but said nothing of the gross breach of faith of the local government, which, in the name of the Queen, was traitorous to the treaty she had made. He seemed to have no qualms about the cause of quarrel. He could not promise to increase the military force permanently, but authorized the Governor to retain the 65th regiment "until the insurrection is put down." He was not one who had the courage to undo a wrong. Meanwhile the strife went on. The Maoris were in the neighbourhood of Taranaki, but when Colonel Gold marched out to meet them they retired. They nevertheless constructed two pahs at Omata, not far from an English block-house. On the 27th March three settlers and two boys were reported as having been savagely murdered by the Taranaki and Ngatiruanui natives at the south side of Taranaki. Te Rangitake, on the other hand, at the north, announced that he made no war on unarmed people. When it was reported that the three settlers had been killed, volunteers, soldiers, and sailors sallied forth on the 28th to avenge them. The Governor himself addressed the militia and volunteers when they started by way
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of the beach while the troops proceeded by the road. Colonel Gold was incommoded "by the disposition of the rebels to get round our left, and so cut us off from the main road," and abandoned his intention to go to the assistance of the volunteers who, by the sound of firing, seem to be "hotly engaged." Being "ordered to return by dark," he did so, having throughout the day kept up "a frequent fire of rockets on the pah and any groups of rebels we observed." The volunteers were aided for a time by about a score of the 65th, and killed several Maoris, but suffered some loss themselves. The senior captain, Brown, reported "his surprise and regret" at the retirement of the 65th. His own position became "untenable," and he went with his dead and wounded to a post held by Captain Stapp, who learnt from the new-comers that the regular troops had been withdrawn. The natives were gathering round, and a council of war was held as to the position which could most easily be held. The senior gave way to two brother militia captains (Stapp and H. A. Atkinson), and attempts were made to throw up "breastworks of sheaves of oats and fencing," 45 close to the homestead of a settler. Eight men of the 65th, who had remained, did "gallant service." The superiority of the English arms of precision was of great use, but it might have fared ill with Captain Brown and his men if Captain Cracroft of H.M.S. 'Niger,' with blue-jackets and marines, had not effected a diversion. He had landed his force at two o'clock, and from the Omata block-house he saw the fray. When Colonel Gold withdrew his men, Captain Cracroft, seeing that daylight was departing, discharged rockets at the Maori pah from a distance of 700 yards, and his men rushed forward, despising the fire which the waning light rendered inaccurate; and, in a few minutes, by scrambling over one another's backs, the 'Niger's' men had bounded into the pah amongst the astonished natives who were left in it, "destroyed everything living in the trenches," and captured the Maori flags. Captain Cracroft was unaware of the beleaguered condition of the volunteers whose
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assailants he thus disconcerted. At eight o'clock he had returned to Taranaki with the captured flags, and was soon on board his ship, which, in the exposed anchorage, could not be left without her crew. There was fear in Taranaki for the benighted volunteers, and an hour before midnight a band went in quest of them. They were met on the road. After the capture of their pah the disconcerted Maoris withdrew. The militia captain considered that the diversion "enabled us to retreat after dark unmolested." After the setting of the moon he started, and at half-past twelve o'clock, carrying "their dead and all the wounded but two (left at the Omata stockade)," the volunteers reached their anxious friends. Less than twenty Europeans had been wounded. One had been killed. More than thirty Maoris were said to have been killed.
The first-fruits of the crop which the Governor's advisers had sown were not gratifying to the community, whose leaders had recommended rapine. Nevertheless they considered every slain settler murdered by the Maoris, and described in glowing colours the gallantry of those who slaughtered the natives. The Maoris, on the other hand, were equally ruthless. A strange exception deserves notice. A settler, who was a Baptist minister, declined to serve in the militia. This the Maoris knew, and when their bands arrived to fight the troops, they made him and the Rev. Mr. Brown put on a white scarf to signify that no Maori would molest them. Thus distinguished they were shaken hands with by each Maori, and a notice, signed by Te Rangitake and other chiefs, was posted up, declaring that the Baptist minister, Mr. Brown, and other enumerated persons, were to be respected, and that their property was to be strictly preserved. They and their children were safe while the fighting raged around them. But not the less did the Maoris sack the abandoned homesteads of settlers with whom they were at war. Captain Cracroft retaliated. He steamed southwards on the coast, and destroyed native settlements at Warea and elsewhere. Armed parties sallied from Taranaki to gather what they could from the deserted farms, and to harass the natives, who in their turn pillaged and burnt. The Governor reported that Captain Cracroft had battered Warea "with good effect," but he earnestly asked for more forces. Having thus managed military
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matters, he was going, he said, to Auckland, to meet the General Assembly, whose sanction for certain expenses was very desirable. There he organized militia and volunteers, and built defensive block-houses, but did not convene the Assembly. He sent friendly missives to the Maori king and other chiefs, and wrote a long account of a great Maori meeting (7th April, 1860) at Ngaruawahia, which Mr. Smith of the native department and some missionaries attended, and by which the importance of the king movement was impressed on the Governor's mind in a new manner. Deputations from distant tribes were "received in some state,"--"allegiance was tendered,"--"lands were presented to the league of which the king was the nominal head,"--"the king's council openly assume the right to decide on the justice of my proceedings, and consider whether or not they will aid a chief in rebellion against Her Majesty's Government;"--"under these circumstances" (the Governor said), "the dispute at Taranaki sinks into insignificance." But the ideas of his advisers still swayed him, for he added; "I cannot but think the occurrences at Taranaki fortunate, because, to use the expression adopted at the Maori king meeting, 'it has led to the discovery of the pah before the builders have had time to complete it.'" His last words were a prayer for "three regiments and a company of artillery without delay." The "fortunate occurrences at Taranaki," where "the issue had been carefully chosen" by his Ministry, demanded more men from England. Such was the position into which malign influences had led a man whom all his friends agreed in honouring as a frank, kind-hearted Englishman.
Mr. Smith at Ngaruawahia heard Potatau's explanation of the state of affairs at Taranaki. Mr. Richmond always relied much on the sale by Potatau to Governor Hobson of the claims of the Waikato tribe to the territory at Waitara, and alleged that the sale barred all Te Rangitake's claims. Potatau explained the matter differently. Payment having been made by Colonel Wakefield for land, he, as chief of the Waikato conquerors, was entitled to some of it, and as the receivers gave him none, he applied to the Government. But this did not affect the position of Te Rangitake. On the contrary, that chief never having been conquered (being, indeed, at the south
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MAORI MEETING AT NGARUAWAHIA.
when the slaughter and captures of Pukerangiora took place), came back with common consent to the Waitara in 1848, the Waikato tribes having abandoned their claims in favour of the returning Ngatiawa at Potatau's request. Potatau had invited him to return to the land of his ancestors in consequence of the Governor's words to Potatau. There was, therefore, a "mana" 46 attaching to Te Rangitake as well as to Potatau. It was only his own share of the Waikato claim that Te Whero Whero could sell, and Te Rangitake's right was yet alive. Mr. Smith argued that the Government thought otherwise, and quoted the deed signed by Te Whero Whero in 1842 as conclusive, but failed to obtain an admission to that effect from the chiefs. They must hear the other side, they said. If Te Rangitake had no claim to the land, "he was wrong, and they would advise him to give up his opposition, but not otherwise."
The killing of the settlers by the Taranaki and Ngatiruanui after the English had commenced warfare, was not, in their eyes, murder, though a crime in the light of Christianity. Such acts were incident to Maori wars, and were in a great measure chargeable on those who caused the war. "Under any circumstances they regarded the proceedings of the Governor as hasty."
Interviews between Mr. Smith and the chiefs continued for days. He saw a sketch of the Waitara block, showing that Te Rangitake had special claims within it, and was told that application had been made by him for the aid of the Ngatimaniapoto. "Friends, blood has been shed--that of the land, and that of the men. Friends, when you see this, think of us. Friends, if you see it well to do so, come to us; or if you see it well, turn you to Auckland." A deputation from the Ngatiruanui and Ngatiawa arrived and formally tendered the allegiance of their tribes to the king. Mr. Smith could obtain no assurances that the Waikato or the Ngatimaniapoto would pronounce against Te Rangitake.
Mr. Buddle, a Wesleyan missionary, sent abstracts of speeches
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made by leading chiefs (11th April) on the arrival of the deputation. It is noticeable that Mr. Richmond and Governor Browne found more favourable commentators amongst the Wesleyans who were friends of Ihaia, than amongst members of the Church of England who were friends of the murdered Katatore and of Te Rangitake. Mr. Buddle pointed out that the speech of the orator Karaka Tomo Te Whakapo of Rangiaohia contained the Waikato decision. Enigmatically he counselled peace. Their mottos were, "Te whakapono, te aroha, te ture,-- religion, love, law." "Let us build our pah; let us complete it; let it be quite finished." Mr. Buddle interpreted this figurative speech as meaning that the king movement was not yet strong enough to enable the Maoris to deal high-handedly with the Pakeha. He was alarmed, and thought the Governor's proposal of a congress of influential chiefs should be adopted by the Government. Other chiefs used violent language. Te Paetai from Kihikihi enumerated the sins of the Pakeha against Rangihaeata, against Honi Heke, and against Rangitake. "Murder is talked of, but it was not murder, it was only a thing joined or added (he apiti). Tell me, was it murder?--No; he apiti"--(loudly replied the Ngatimaniapoto). "According to the law of Christianity it was murder, but according to the Governor's it was he uru whakaara" (i.e. a part of the battle begun by the Governor). There was a gleam of comfort in the fact that a great Southern chief, Wi Tako Ngatata, who had gone to Waikato to meet the king party, visited Taranaki on his return homewards and wrote thence to dissuade the Waikato tribes from joining "the sin of Te Rangitake." The value of this letter was diminished when Dr. Featherston told the House at Auckland that he, with the Speaker and others, visited Wi Tako on his return to the Hutt, and asked, "What was the meaning of his saying that 'the wrong was Te Rangitake's'? 'I will tell you,' replied Wi Tako. 'Te Rangitake wrote to the Waikatos telling them that he had retreated to the mountains, but shortly afterwards he returned to the disputed land, and thus the fighting began. This is what I meant by saying the wrong is Rangitake's.' 'What, did you not mean to admit that he had no title to the land--no right to forbid the sale?' The words were scarcely out of my mouth before Wi Tako, Te Puni,
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WI TAKO'S OPINION.
and other chiefs present cried out, 'Kahore, kahore, kahore' (No, no, no). 'The Governor is in the wrong. Te Rangitake has land in the block, his wife has land, his son also. Te Puni and others (named) also own portions of the land sold by Teira.' Wi Tako and Te Puni then explained that the land was divided into small allotments; that these allotments were marked out by stones; that many of them had names; and said that if we would accompany them to Waitara, they would point out the allotment of each individual. Wi Tako added that Teira had no more right to sell the 600 acres than a man owning an acre in Wellington would have a right to sell the whole town." Upon Wi Tako's letter, nevertheless, the Ministry based mountains of argument in favour of their policy. Yet as they had with the aid of a legal opinion from England debarred Maoris from the suffrage because of their "occupation by tribes or communities," and as Mr. Richmond and Mr. Whitaker were lawyers they might have been supposed capable of understanding that a payment to Teira and a few others could not annihilate the rights of the majority of the tribe. But what they used for one purpose they repudiated for another.
The Maori king at the end of the gathering of the chiefs at Ngaruawahia enjoined peace, and desired that the Ngatimaniapoto should take no guns with them in escorting the Ngatiruanui home to Taranaki. The chief Rewi thus described (in the author's hearing) what he and Potatau did. They were at Ngaruawahia. "The people clamoured for war. I said, 'No; do not go to the fight.' I wished the matter to be referred to the missionaries in order that they might lay it before the Government. Wetini said, 'No; let us go to the fighting; let us waste no time in investigations.' Purukuru went to Kihikihi (Rewi's settlement), and, at the runanga there, the people first resolved to go and fight. Epiha was the first to urge it, and Rewiti supported him. When Potatau heard of the runanga, he asked me to follow the war-party to dissuade them. I overtook them at Mokau and asked them to return. Epiha refused, and said I might return by myself. I then wrote to Parris and asked him to meet me. He did so, and was in danger of being killed. Then there was fighting at Taranaki in which the
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Pakehas were worsted. Then it was that I consented to the war, and warned the people that if I joined the righting it would not speedily come to an end."
Mr. Parris' escape deserves to be chronicled. Receiving Rewi's message on the 11th May, he started northwards, and at Pukekohe met the war-party, consisting of about fifty Ngatiruanui and Taranaki men, and about 150 Waikato. There was evident disagreement between Rewi's Waikato friends and the Ngatiruanui and Taranaki natives who were being escorted home. The treatment to be shown to Parris divided them. The Ngatiruanui and Taranaki men started by themselves in anger. Epiha went to Parris and upbraided him for approaching the war-party without sending a messenger or letter beforehand. "If we had met you on the march you would have been shot dead without our being able to save you." After long and eager converse Epiha went in advance to Urenui to endeavour to counteract the ambush which the Ngatiruanui and Taranaki were bent on forming. At Urenui many Maoris were assembled, and amongst them Parris thought that by the starlight he saw some of his enemies. He was hustled. The authority of Epiha and another chief caused the crowd to fall back. An armed band of Waikato took charge of Parris. There was an advance-guard and a rear-guard. A Waikato warrior on each side grasped his hand. At Wairau he was called upon to join in an extempore prayer for the King, for the Queen, and for his own safety. All danger having been passed he was allowed to proceed alone. He poured forth natural thanks to his preserver. Epiha answered: "Do not attribute your deliverance to me, but to God. I shall yet meet you as an enemy in the daylight. You have seen that I would not consent to your being murdered."
Governor Browne asked for the opinions of his Ministry on the situation into which he had been seduced. Mr. Richmond, as their mouthpiece, drew up a long and argumentative memorandum (27th April), narrating all past facts, and defending the contempt shown for Rangitake's claims. "The question of title is one on which persons not versed in the intricacies of native usage cannot expect to form an independent judgment." McLean, Parris, and the Wesleyan missionary Mr. Whiteley,
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BISHOP SELWYN'S PROTEST.
were adverse to the claim of Rangitake, and the chief, Wi Tako, had written a letter condemning him. But the pretensions of the king movement though absurd "were not less dangerous." The natives despised the warlike prowess of the English, "and it must be confessed that the imperfect success of military operations in New Zealand has given some countenance to the natives' fixed opinion of their own superiority." Everywhere in the Northern Island, except to the north of Auckland, "the determination to shake off the British dominion has been steadily gaining ground." A war of merciless character was probable. With daring irreverence for facts Mr. Richmond said: "The colonists as a body are in no degree responsible, directly or through their representatives, for the existing state of affairs. They have never had the direction of native policy, nor have they dictated, or even suggested, the acts of the Imperial Government in its relations with the natives; but they approve of the stand made by his Excellency in the Taranaki case, and are naturally willing, as their present attitude proves, to risk life itself in the maintenance of the Queen's authority over the islands of New Zealand." But the colony had not resources for the struggle. England must provide them. Of this memorandum the Governor on the day of its date sent twenty-five printed copies to the Secretary of State. About the same time the Provincial Council at Napier (Hawke's Bay) passed a resolution congratulating the Governor on his policy at Taranaki, "at present under martial law owing to the meddling of disaffected aborigines." This was too much for Bishop Selwyn's patience. He sent a deliberate protest (28th April, 1860) on behalf of his Maori flock to the Government. Martial law was, he said, proclaimed before a single native had taken up arms, though there had been "unarmed obstruction of the work of the surveyors." He claimed on behalf of the Maoris an investigation of all land titles before a regular tribunal, with the usual safeguards against partiality or error, viz. evidence on oath, arguments of counsel, and right of appeal; abstinence from employing military force till all civil measures might be found ineffective; and, as the "colony was avowedly formed not for the acquisition of territory for the English race, but for the protection of the New Zealanders," he demanded that "this primary
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object shall not be sacrificed to the aggrandisement of the English provinces." The Governor wrote (25th May) with regard to the Bishop's remonstrance: "The cordial support which I have received from my responsible advisers, and their avowed approval of the policy I have thought it my duty to pursue, have been most gratifying to me and deserve my warmest acknowledgments." The Ministry spent nearly a month in preparing a memorandum to be sent to England with the Bishop's protest, and thus postponed its arrival in England until August. They complained that it was "an indirect attack," and their reply occupied nearly ten times as much space as the protest. They averred that Te Rangitake's advocates "strangely jumbled" the Maori "mana" with English feudal law. "As to the proclamation of martial law, that was a measure of precaution rather intended to restrain, if necessary, the European population than directed against the natives." It was "blind unreason to expect that Te Rangitake could or ought to be dealt with in all respects as a peaceable citizen." They denied that the primary object in founding the colony was the protection of the Maoris. "If his Lordship" (the Bishop) "desired to arouse and stimulate the hatred of race, he could not do so more effectually than by such assertions. . . . Once let it be understood that the interest of the settlers is to be subordinated to that of the natives and a war of races is inevitable." Te Rangitake's claim was "simply the right of the strong arm. . . . The matter was to all intents and purposes res judicata. But had this been otherwise a trial with the usual safeguards against partiality or error, viz. evidence on oath and arguments of counsel, would under the circumstances have been something more ludicrous than has yet been seen in our public dealing with the Maoris, which is saying a great deal." The document concluded by enumerating the hardships of the settlers exposed to Maori violence, their respect for law, and their laudable desire to establish British supremacy; and by declaring that the decisive action of the Governor, with which the Ministry concurred (though they denied being the cause of it), was dictated by regard for the welfare of New Zealand, for the dignity of the Crown, and for those just principles which had previously regulated the conduct of the British Government in the colony. It
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was natural indeed that the settlers, aware of the ferocity of Maori warfare, should fervently desire to see violence put down by the strong arm; and peace, if possible, secured. From every province addresses were sent to the Governor. The Canterbury Provincial Council proffered assistance and an asylum for refugees from Taranaki. The Taranaki province prayed, "That your Excellency will not make peace with Te Rangitake upon any terms in the least compromising the Queen's supremacy, and that as regards the Taranaki and Ngatiruanui natives that no peace will be made with them until they have been severely punished for the barbarous murders committed by them upon unoffending and helpless settlers, and that compensation will be exacted from them for the ruinous losses sustained by the settlers in the marauding expedition of these natives." Thus wrote Mr. Cutfield the superintendent, and twenty-two others. It is the curse of a wrongful act that it entails suffering upon the innocent. Homes were devastated; farms, flocks, and herds had been abandoned to Maori ravagers. Taranaki was crowded with flying settlers, whose wives and families were deported to safer harbours. But no dismay was in the hearts of those who remained. They would brave all dangers of war, "would rather abandon the hearths for which they have lately fought, to commence again the arduous labours of founding a new home, than run the risk of being again subjected to the domination of a savage race." Mr. Richmond had sown the dragon's teeth, and the blood of descendants of the Norsemen was as hot as that of the fiery children of the South.
A memorial of a different nature reached the Governor in April, 1860. Archdeacon Hadfield sent him a petition, numerously signed by Maoris at Otaki, asking the Queen to remove Colonel Browne on account of his unwarrantable proceedings at Waitara. He detained the petition for a month, because it was "an evident translation from English,"--some names were in European handwriting, and he wished to inquire as to the genuineness of the signatures. Nepia Taratoa, Kingi Te Ahoaho, and 495 others subscribed it. In May, the Governor transmitted the petition to the Secretary of State, with letters from the resident magistrate and the District Commissioner, imputing the petition to the advice of Archdeacon Hadfield. It
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was admitted, however, that the chiefs held a meeting at which the Archdeacon was not present, and that some violent speeches had been made against the Governor's conduct. From his correspondents the Governor learned that most of the signatures were written without consulting the persons represented. The petition was worded as inoffensively as such a petition could be. It deplored the loss of Governor Grey, who only punished Maoris when they were wrong, asserted that Te Rangitake was a loyal subject, that the Queen (they knew) did not want to take away their lands unjustly as was being done by the Governor, and prayed for a Governor "competent properly to carry out the Queen's measures." When in August, 1860, Archdeacon Hadfield saw in sessional papers the imputation that he had originated the petition, he sent through the Governor a letter to the Secretary of State denying that he had directly or indirectly originated or suggested it, and adding that he believed it to be genuine and spontaneous. The statements to the contrary had been obtained from one Maori who had been removed from office (as a teacher) by the Archdeacon many years before. Far from regarding the action of the petitioners as insubordinate, the Archdeacon cited it as a proof of the advancement of religion, civilization, law, and order among them, that more than 500 of them had met in a time of great excitement, and after two or three days' deliberation addressed a humble and loyal petition to the Queen. As to the Governor's statement that the language proved the petition to be translated from the English, "in the opinion of some of the best Maori scholars in the country" the fact was otherwise. The Archdeacon warned the English Government against confounding dissatisfaction at the Governor's proceedings with disaffection to the Crown. "I would further observe, that whereas the natives of this country are a high-minded people, and at present have no legal tribunal to appeal to for the protection of their territorial rights, there will be great danger, if they are debarred from using the right open to all British subjects of petitioning the Crown in a constitutional manner for the redress of their wrongs, that they will be driven to seek redress by force of arms." As Mr. Richmond on more than one occasion rejoiced in the idea that the war was brought about before the Maori king
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TROOPS SENT FROM AUSTRALIA.
party had been consolidated, the Archdeacon's fears found no sympathy among Colonel Browne's Ministers, and the Governor himself was but a floating accompaniment of the prevailing stream. His Attorney-General, Mr. Whitaker, was contemptuous as Mr. Richmond of abstract rights on the part of the Maoris. On the 6th April, the Governor notified to the colonists at Auckland that the town and district were secure against "any attack which could be made by the largest force the Maoris could bring into the field." He had no sooner dissipated the fears of the Europeans, than the pensioners and others began to insult the Maoris in the town. "Unless something was done to prevent it collision would be inevitable, and the whole native population would be in arms against us. I therefore published a notification," "to ensure friendly treatment for individuals of the native race." To the colonies in Australia Colonel Browne had written from Taranaki in hot haste in March, asking for reinforcements with the least possible delay. Wiser heads than his had been watching events for some time. Sir Henry Barkly, Governor of Victoria, when he heard (7th March) of the proclamation of martial law at Taranaki foresaw that all the soldiers in the south would be called for to support the authority of the Crown so rashly jeopardized. He telegraphed at once to Sir William Denison (Governor . . .) in Sydney, inquiring if assistance had been asked for; but, being answered in the negative, consulted with Major-General Pratt (Commander of the Forces), so that all things might be in readiness for the event which was sure to follow. When the cry for help arrived in April, detachments of the 12th and 40th Regiments were despatched from Sydney, Melbourne, and Tasmania. The armed colonial steam-sloop 'Victoria' was sent from Melbourne. The provident Sir H. Barkly suggested to other Governors that they should follow the example of Victoria, in prohibiting by Order in Council the exportation of arms and ammunition to New Zealand, "except under special permit." For the "sympathy and generosity" shown in Victoria, the Duke of Newcastle conveyed the warm thanks of the Government. Sir William Denison read a moral lesson to Colonel Browne and his advisers, which, if they had been wise, might yet have saved life and honour. Colonel Browne in his appeal dwelt on the
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marvellous manner in which seventy Maoris in a pah built in one night kept Colonel Gold nearly two days from effecting an entrance, protecting themselves in excavations from "a heavy and constant fire from two twenty-four-pounders and two rocket-tubes," and finally "evacuating it with a loss of only four wounded." With this specimen of the task to be done by the English, he forwarded a memorandum written by Mr. C. W. Richmond, showing the premeditation with which the Ministry plunged into the affray, and hoped to involve their countrymen in it. "An occasion has now arisen on which it has become necessary to support the Governor's authority by a military force. The issue has been carefully chosen--the particular question being as favourable a one of its class as could have been selected." Unconsciously the writer framed an indictment against himself--for in three years the Government abandoned as unjust the so-called favourable claim at Waitara. He added that the Maoris who promoted the king movement asserted "national independence," and opposed further extension of European settlement. The military force "should be forthwith augmented to the greatest extent practicable." Sir W. Denison promptly sent succour. Commodore Loring despatched H.M.S. 'Cordelia,' and the 'Iris.' The 'Pelorus' left Melbourne; and nearly a thousand soldiers and sailors were sent to New Zealand within ten days of the demand for reinforcements. On the 16th May, Sir W. Denison sent to Colonel Browne a confidential commentary upon Mr. Richmond's memorandum. "I do not think," he said, "that you have derived much information from this document. The views and opinions of your responsible advisers are to all appearance confined to these: first, that they ought to have something to say in the discussion of questions having reference to the natives (of whom I observe by the way they are in no way the representatives); and second, that as they are unable to defend themselves, England should step in to help them." But the manifesto opened up the wider question of the whole policy of the Government towards the Maoris. Sir William Denison accepted the election of Potatau as evidence of their willing assent to the establishment of some system of Government amongst themselves. Mr. Richmond had passed lightly over "the causes which have induced a people,
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MR. RICHMOND AND SIR W. DENISON.
consisting of clans or septs analogous to those which used to occupy the Highlands of Scotland, to forget their old feuds, and unite together for a common object." Their position as subjects of the Queen imposed limitations without corresponding benefits. Their lands were obtained from them at nominal rates, and retailed before their eyes at an enormous advance in price. Mr. Richmond's "policy and that of his colleagues would lead to steps, which, if they were backed up in England, would in a short time annihilate the Maori race, and permit the occupation by the white man of the rich land, yet in native hands, upon which for years past greedy and longing eyes have been cast. My view, however, of the Maori is very different--he is the subject of the Queen, and as such is entitled to have his rights respected and his feelings considered; he has shown an aptitude for civilization which ought to be encouraged; his efforts to raise himself in the social scale should be assisted. If this policy were carried out steadily and consistently, all causes of disaffection would soon be done away: there would be an end to these petty warfares, which, while they cause a large expenditure of money, result in nothing but an aggravation of the feeling of hostility between the races. The Government, it is true, would be abused by certain classes of the white population. The land speculators might grumble, but I feel convinced that the prosperity of the colony and the happiness of the people would be promoted by such a change of system." He reminded Colonel Browne, that in 1857 he had in New Zealand personally suggested the necessity of such legislation. Late occurrences had strengthened his opinions. He urged his friend to recognize the Maori craving for legitimate authority. He would not quarrel with the name--chief or king; if the Maoris in search of order would bend to any paramount authority and submit their schemes to the Governor, let him utilize those schemes. The first effect would no doubt be to diminish land purchases. "The Maoris will decline to sell: and were I in your place, I should be in no hurry to buy." Eventually the appetite for gain would lead to further sales. He gave his opinions merely for what they were worth, and apologized for obtruding them, differing as they did from those of Mr. Richmond and his friends. The ordinary course doubtless would be to treat the
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Maori as a rebel, to overwhelm him with troops, regardless of expense, and sweep from the earth a "race which occupies land of which the white man professes to be in want, though he has millions of acres of which he can or does make no use." Thus the Imperial Government would buy, at high cost of blood and treasure, land which it would hand over to the colonists to be sold for their benefit. Costly, immoral, and impolitic would be such a policy, and he commended the alternative to Governor Browne's consideration; sending at the same time a copy of his despatch to the Secretary of State, and trusting that he would not be deemed to have meddled presumptuously with a matter which did not concern him.
It would have been well if Lord Derby had held the seals of the Colonial Office when Sir William Denison's despatch arrived there in August, 1860. It was perhaps fortunate that the Duke of Newcastle was absent in America, and that Sir G. Cornewall Lewis presided temporarily in Downing Street. But though wiser than the Duke, he did not pierce so far into the matter as to prize at its worth Sir William Denison's advice. Bishop Selwyn, writing to his friend, Sir John Patteson, explained that he and Sir William Martin had been compelled to make a stand against the violent change initiated by Governor Browne under his new prompters. "Up to the time when the soldiers were sent to Taranaki I was in the most friendly communication with the Governor and his Ministers. Sir William Martin was his constant adviser in all matters relating to the social improvement of the natives, and had just compiled a small code of rules for the use of native magistrates at his request. We had not even the opportunity of offering advice, for we heard nothing of the matter till the order was given for the troops to embark." The new keepers of the Governor's conscience, like Lady Macbeth, feared his nature. Like Macbeth's it was "too full of the milk of human kindness " to be trusted if wise cautions of Martin and Selwyn should reach him. Unless he could be entrapped into a struggle, from which it could be impressed upon him that without success in war he could not extricate himself with honour, there was danger lest the new policy might, by a few words of truth and soberness, be exploded. If Martin or Selwyn should hear of the plot those words would be spoken.
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DESTRUCTION OF CROPS AT TARANAKI.
The Governor preserved the requisite secrecy. "The affair" (the Bishop wrote) "was announced by the Government, and looked upon by the natives as the beginning of a new policy for the whole of New Zealand. It became necessary for us to enter the strife, and I hope it was done temperately and respectfully." Colonel Gold used reinforcements at Taranaki in carrying on the melancholy strife. Being instructed not to attack Te Rangitake (for in their secret minds Colonel Browne's advisers must have feared that the English Government would detect the injustice committed at Waitara), he marched on the 20th April to Tataraimaka:--destroyed houses, and machinery of a water-mill, and scattered to the winds quantities of wheat and grain at a large Maori settlement; shelled a pah at Warea, destroyed it and the property it contained; and regretted, on the 4th May, that he could do no more in the south, though he felt "assured that the destruction of the mill and crops, corn, houses, canoes, and ploughs, at the different stations we went to, will severely cripple the resources of the Taranaki natives this winter." He was prepared to attack Te Rangitake when permitted. But Colonel Browne feared that such an attack would stir the Maoris to union. "For this reason," he told the Secretary of State, "I have requested Colonel Gold to refrain from attacking Te Rangitake again unless that chief commences hostilities." To such a pass had ill advice reduced him that the object for which he proclaimed martial law was already abandoned, and the efforts of the troops were directed against the Taranaki natives, to whom Colonel Gold was ordered to "show no forbearance." Hearing that the king natives were to assemble at Ngaruawahia in May, Browne invited all the most important chiefs, well-disposed to the English, to meet him at Auckland on the 2nd July. Throughout June the state of the roads prevented Colonel Gold from operating against the natives to the south of Taranaki.
Donald McLean went to the meeting at Ngaruawahia with Wiremu Nera, a friendly Waikato chief. From the 21st to the 29th he constantly attended it. It was composed principally of Waikato, Taupo, and Manukau natives, about 3000 in number. The main object was to confirm Potatau as king and to erect his flag. War-dances were "indulged in with savage delight," as
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the lower Waikato and Manakau natives landed from their flotilla of canoes. Orators expressed "discontent with the Governor for not consulting Potatau and the Waikato Maori assessors before he declared war; and said the land sold at Waitara would be held by the king natives, conjointly with Te Rangitake, if the sale had taken place, since the flag was sent there, or if he could establish a title; but if not, and his title proved defective, it should be handed over to the Governor." The majority of the meeting staunchly supported the king movement. Some were moderate adherents. Some opposed it as likely to lead to a war of races. Wiremu Nera was one of the last class. To show that he required no support, Mr. McLean requested Wiremu Nera to leave before McLean harangued the meeting. Te Heu Heu interrupted him, but sat down when requested to do so, and McLean's speech was unfinished at night. It was to be resumed in the morning, but the Maoris were slow to assemble, and as McLean heard that the flagstaff was to be reared that day--a ceremony he desired not to see-- he bade farewell to Potatau, who was very friendly to him. The flagstaff was erected on the 29th May, and named after Potatau's ancestor, Te Paue. Potatau on that day spoke publicly for the first time, and spoke in friendly terms of the English. McLean could not gather that there was any intention to molest the Europeans, and his report showed that his mind was tossed by doubts as to the king movement. It had an early origin in men's minds, he said. The founder of the New Zealand mission, Marsden, had first suggested it, and the Ngapuhi (Waka Nene's) tribe were then favourable to it. It failed through inter-tribal jealousies, but had frequently been revolved in Maori minds. Designing Europeans bad constantly urged it. Land was a powerful lever in supporting the movement. "It is not to be wondered at that an imaginative and poetic race like the New Zealanders, whose memories live so much in the past, should have a strong attachment to the land of their forefathers. . . . Almost every mountain, hillock, forest, valley, river, or stream has its particular history of wars, defeats, conquests, or secret repositories of their dead . . . and while the Europeans are too apt to believe that the land is a mere article of commercial exchange, of little consideration beyond its
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MCLEAN AT NGARUAWAHIA.
monetary value, the natives, on the other hand, from motives not easily understood or appreciated, deem the alienation of certain spots, which they regard with romantic veneration, as a species of desecration." With such knowledge, if he could have had the courage of his convictions, McLean might have kept the Governor from wrong-doing, but he sturdily maintained at Ngaruawahia the validity of his purchase from Teira. The king-maker, Te Waharoa, advised the chiefs to find out who was in the wrong. "Let us not take up an unrighteous cause. Let us search out the merits of the case, that if we die we may die in a righteous cause." Kopara Ngatihinetu said: "Let us have patience till our friends who have gone to Taranaki shall return, then we shall know the merits of the case. ... If the land was paid for before the flag reached it the Governor is right; if not, then the matter cannot rest where it is. If the mana and flag went before, we must contend for our land." Te Wetini said: "If the Governor's money was laid down for the land at Waitara before it came under our law then he is right. ... If the land was purchased after it became ours then I shall show my love to Rangitake." With such councils amongst the friends of the Maori king there was yet space for repentance, but there is no sign that the Governor or his advisers repented. McLean reported that Potatau's advisers kept records, assigned certain duties to certain chiefs, and appointed councillors, magistrates, and constables. The king-maker was "actively engaged in preparing a new code of laws, using such portions of the 'Nga Ture,' 47 which was published by the Government in Maori, as may suit the purposes they have in view." Admitting (May, 1860) that the king movement might, under other circumstances, have been regarded as an interesting feature of progressive advancement, McLean feared that as matters stood concessions might be construed as a recognition of proceedings injurious to British supremacy.
Another door of peace was thus closed. In June the Bishop of Wellington and Archdeacon Hadfield made an effort to avert the horrors of war. They appealed to the Secretary of State as a last resource. If the dispute about the Waitara had been between two Englishmen, or between the Government and an
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Englishman, it would have been decided in the law courts; whereas in the case of Te Rangitake the whole colony had been taken "by surprise by the Governor's attack" upon a chief who, in 1846, was the firmest and most useful ally of the British Government in war, and the one great southern chief, moreover, who, up to the time of the Waitara dispute, had always been opposed to the Maori king movement. The Bishop and Archdeacon prayed that the Governor might be directed not to adopt a different course towards Maoris from that adopted towards Englishmen, but to act in accordance with the letter and the spirit of the treaty of Waitangi. Mr. Richmond furnished the Governor with a memorandum, the real value of which may be gauged by one sentence. "The question (of Rangitake's rights) was absolutely decided by the Governor's acceptance of Teira's offer in the face of Te Rangitake's known opposition." Mr. Richmond admitted that it was true that the colonial public was not previously informed that the soldiers would be employed to support the survey of the Waitara block. "The question was one of Imperial policy, the public agitation of which in the colony would have been likely to produce more harm than good." The possibility that a knowledge of the new policy might have brought warnings from Sir W. Martin or Bishop Selwyn home to the conscience of the Governor, would not have seemed good in the eyes of Mr. Richmond. In his despatch the Governor said: "I certainly did not contemplate war, and it was not Her Majesty's troops but Te Rangitake who commenced it." He promised a statement of the whole case, which was "in course of preparation."
At this juncture Mr. Weld threw his weight into the Ministerial scale. In an address to the electors of the Wairau (1st May, 1860) he showed the baneful influence of Mr. C. W. Richmond upon his mind. "The question 48 at Taranaki is not in any way of ownership or title to land: it is this--Can a chief who assumes
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tribal authority forbid the exercise of rights of ownership by a native owner of land?" He had been told that his "accession to the Ministry would add to his strength," and intended to join it. Thus pledged at the outset, Mr. Weld unfortunately saw everything with Mr. Richmond's eyes, and a judgment which might have been useful to the General Assembly was comparatively lost to it. In July, 1860, he became an Executive Councillor, and in November, 1860, succeeded Mr. Richmond as Native Minister. Mr. Richmond is entitled to the benefit of the fact that his views received sympathy from Mr. Weld. Yet it may be hoped that the latter would not have originally adopted the position which a coalition with the former compelled him to assume. His sympathy with the rape of the Waitara block is a warning that where feelings and interests are concerned judgment is easily clouded. Like Mr. Richmond, he repelled the idea that Te Rangitake was expelled from his home, but has written: 'It is, I dare say, true that after Te Rangitake left, his settlements were looted by troops, or by Teira's people, who then considered him at war and acted accordingly." Nothing more is wanted to condemn Mr. Weld's contention than his own words, by which the robber of a bird's nest might prove that he did not rob it because the bird flew away at his approach.
END OF VOLUME I.
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