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The facts offered in the preceding pages will have shewn that New Zealand differs materially, in climate and general physical features, from any part of Australia. The prevalence of mountains and hilly lands renders the climate showery, and consequently it bears a resemblance to that of England, though of a finer quality. While, in the pastoral districts of Australia, the population must be necessarily of a dispersed character, that of New Zealand will generally attain a density similar to that of Europe.
Other peculiarities of New Zealand are equally significant. It consists of a group of islands, abounding in bays and harbours suitable for foreign commerce, and affording means of ready intercommunication by steamboats. The coasts also yield vast quantities of the finest fish, valuable for home use, and for exportation in a salted state. Then, the moderate climate admits of not only fish, but beef being salted, without risk of loss. The lands, when cultivated, yield prolific crops of wheat and other kinds of grain suitable for exportation. From the trees, potashes may be made to any imaginable extent. From the Phormium Tenax, or New Zealand Flax, cordage of the strongest and most durable kind may be manufactured. Of fruits of excellent quality, there will be, as cultivation advances, the greatest profusion. The amount of mineral wealth it would be presumptuous to estimate.
It would be difficult to say what New Zealand wants in the natural attributes of a great country. And a great country it will be--the greater from its proximity to the vast regions of
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Australia, still in the infancy of their prosperity. That which New Zealand requires is the settlement of industrious and intelligent Europeans. From what has been previously said, it is seen that everywhere the field is open. At Auckland, Wellington, Nelson, New Plymouth or Taranaki, Dunedin, Lyttleton, and other centres of British civilisation, lands may be acquired, and employment will be found by those who are able and willing to work. It is true that fortunes are not to be made by sheep and wool, as in Australia; but sufficient scope is offered to capitalists, and also for carrying on a system of rural husbandry on a moderate scale, with room for extending to greater things. Unite to this the usual exemption from rates and taxes, freedom from the oppressive conventionalities of an old country, and the solacements of a delightful climate, and it may be said with justice that few parts of the earth's surface present such allurements to the emigrant as New Zealand.
NOTE. --Since the above was written, the following extract from a letter from Mr Godley to Mr Adderley, M. P., dated Wellington, New Zealand, August 13, 1850, has been put into our hands:--
'This colony, as a field for the investment of capital, is, I firmly believe, unrivalled in the world. Sheep and cattle-keeping here will pay--does pay, in fact, according to the most moderate computation --30 per cent, on the average, and has often paid 100 per cent, and more. And this will last, and even increase, until the vast available districts of the Middle Island are filled up.... Is it not most wonderful that there should, in these circumstances, be hardly any capital flowing into the country? A man beginning with £5000 is quite a Jones Lloyd here; and I know a man who began with about 200 sheep, and 15 or 20 horses, seven years ago, and who has now sheep and other stock worth at least £10,000, besides having 150 acres under the plough, and large farm-buildings, a brig of his own, &c. Everything, no doubt, depends on personal, or at least trustworthy management; but what each family in England ought to do is this--to send out one of its own members, if qualified, and make him superintend the investment of the family capital. It might, with ease and certainty, be doubled in four or five years at present rates. I am sure of this, and you know I am not given to rash or headlong speculation. I could prove it to you by numerous instances.'