1862 - Voices from Auckland, New Zealand - [Geography and Statistics] p 13-19

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  1862 - Voices from Auckland, New Zealand - [Geography and Statistics] p 13-19
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EXTENDING from north to south for upwards of eight hundred miles, and varying in breadth from fifteen to one hundred and fifty miles, the Islands of New Zealand comprise an area somewhat greater than that of the United Kingdom; and, being more generally indented with estuaries and deep bays, they have a sea board exceeding considerably that of the Island of Great Britain. Mountainous in their character, they are irrigated in every direction by fresh water rivers and streams: they are still partially covered with forests of valuable timber; and the open country, with its fern-clad hills and grassy plains, even in its natural state, affords good pasturage for sheep and cattle. From various animals, and venomous reptiles of every kind, the country is entirely free; its climate is famed for its mildness and salubrity; and the soil is suited to the growth of every description of English farm produce. In both the principal islands gold has already been discovered; and though the mineral resources of the country have as yet been but very imperfectly developed, coal, copper ore, manganese, iron, sand, and sulphur, have been found in various localities. Owing to the irregular shape of the islands, their snow-clad mountains, their forest ranges and open plains, the climate of New Zealand is considerably modified by local influences; but, allowing for disturbing

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causes, the temperature becomes gradually colder from the North Cape to Stuart's Island, in the South; and the difference between the climate of Auckland and Otago is as great as between that of the Isle of Wight and Aberdeen.

The great demand for every description of farm produce in the Australian colonies, has had the effect of demonstrating the agricultural capabilities of the country, and of stimulating the enterprise of the people: and as a field for the exertions of the industrious poor, New Zealand is probably without a rival. For those, however, who have already failed at home --for decayed tradesmen, for clerks and shopmen, for candidates for Government employment, for young men who have neither capital nor skill, and who are too proud or too weak to earn their bread by the sweat of their brow--New Zealand cannot be recommended as a field of emigration. Hut for the stout agricultural labourer, for the industrious artizan, the domestic servant, the small hardworking farmer, with a thrifty wife and stalwart sons and daughters; for every class of our countrymen who are able and willing to earn their daily bread by means of their daily labour, the country affords a congenial field on which an early independence may with certainty be earned. 1


OF the Provinces into which New Zealand has been divided, the Province of Auckland is the largest and most important. It comprises about two-thirds of the northern portion of the northern island, nay an European population more than double that of any other Province exclusive of Naval and Military Forces, and more than a half of the whole native race. It is distinguished also for the extent of its coast line, the number of its harbours, and the facilities it affords for inland navigation; and probably no better proof can be given of its attractive-

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ness, as a field of emigration, than the fact that while people from various parts of the neighbouring colonies were crowding to the gold fields of Australia in the year 1852, the population of the Province of Auckland, at the end of that year, exceeded by some hundreds the population of the province at the end of the year preceding; and has since continued steadily to increase.

Two of the most valuable natural productions of New Zealand are peculiar to the Province of Auckland: neither kauri gum nor kauri spars being found to the south of its southern boundary. The value of New Zealand spars has long been known in England; but the Report of the French Commission on the comparative strength of timbers of various kinds, has recently been made known abroad--the superior quality for ship masts--of the New Zealand Kauri Pine, and cargoes of valuable spars are from time to time shipped from the northern ports. But, besides valuable timber, the kauri tree produces large quantities of resin or gum, which has recently become an established article of commerce, both in the English and American markets. It is used as a size for glazing calico, as a substitute for gum copal, and for other purposes not yet generally ascertained. Its price in the English market has varied from £20 to £50 a ton. The natives, by whom it is collected, receive from the exporters £10 or £12 a ton. The amount shipped from the province varies considerably from year to year: the largest quantity (1,660 tons) was exported in the year 1854, the declared value in New Zealand being £28,000. Resides timber and kauri gum, the principal articles of export from the Province of Auckland are grain, potatoes, copper ore, wool, and oil. In the course of two years after the discovery of the Australian gold fields, the exports from the province increased three-fold. With its numerous rivers and harbours, the Province of Auckland possesses great advantages for maritime pursuits; and more than a hundred vessels are registered as belonging to the port of Auckland alone, besides upwards of a hundred and fifty licensed small craft under fifteen tons. Seven or eight hundred vessels, of all sizes, foreign and coastwise, enter the port in the course of a year; and English and American whalers still continue, in large numbers, to resort to the northern ports. 2

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The total European Population of Auckland for 1859, exclusive of military, 21,686, with military, about, 23,186, nearly one-third of the total population of the whole Colony.

Wooden houses still form the great majority of the dwellings in New Zealand. Out of the 307 brick and stone buildings, Auckland owned 160, the majority of them really substantial and extensive structures, and the census for 1859 will show a very marked increase in that number in the province where the manufacture of bricks is becoming an important branch of business. (Returns, 1858).

In Auckland there were 12,384 males to 9302 females. The total number of married males, exclusive of military, 2977, females 2845; unmarried males 7049, females 4890; showing a large deficiency in female population; widowers 122, widows 224. (Returns, 1858. )

For Auckland the immigration and emigration stands thus Immigration: adults--3868 males, 1263 females; children, 565 males, 494 females; total 6190. Emigration: adults--2264 males, 487 females; children--187 males, 168 females; total 3106; showing a clear excess of immigration over emigration, in this province, of 3,084.

Out of 274, which forms the total of deaths at Auckland for 1859, no fewer than 74 were children under two years of age.

159 vessels with a tonnage of over 56,000, and crews of over 3400, were entered inwards at Auckland. Outward 167 vessels, tonnage 57,803, crews 3304; so that in both cases more than one-third of the shipping trade of New Zealand falls to the share of Auckland.

Imports. Auckland Province, with its large Maori as well as European population, takes £412,001. Exports, £106628. Auckland exported grain, flour, and bran to the value of £5087; Kauri Gum, £20,776; Oil, £2579; Potatoes, £6568; Timber, £34,376; Wool, £11,706.

171 registered vessels, with a tonnage of 5819, belong to Auckland.

Horses, 3839; Cattle, 31,700; Pigs, 11,461; Goats, 3079. In Sheep Auckland was still behind, but she has been working hard to pull up since then. Number of acres fenced 90,467; under crop 60,201; in sown grass 50,319; acres in potatoes 2508.

Auckland contributed £80,511 7s 10d. to the general revenue. (Returns, 1858),

For the year ending 30th June, I860, the Revenue of the Province was £66,217; expenditure, £34,596; surplus, £31,620.

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The Auckland Savings' Bank was established 1847. Depositors: Europeans 487; Maoris 10; total 503. Deposited by Europeans £14,353 3s. 7d.; Maoris £592 13s. 2d.; total £14,946 16s. 9d. Amounts withdrawn by Europeans £6341 9s 9d.; by Maoris £170 8s. 4d.; total £6512 8s. 6d.; from this it would appear that there is in the Auckland Bank a balance to the credit of the depositors of £8434 8s. 8d.

From the New Zealander, May 26th, 1860.

From official Returns, published in the Provincial Government Gazette, we learn that in the month of January last the sales of Waste Lands in this Province amounted to 9842 acres, 1 rood, and 17 perches. That the sum of £1341 16s. 6d. was received in cash, and £1007 10s. in Scrip, and that Land Orders for 7092 acres were exercised. There remained at the close of that month, according to the Returns furnished by the Deputy Waste Land Commissioner at Auckland and Mongonui, 48,607 acres surveyed and open for sale or selection.

In the following month, February, the Return shows that 4795 acres were disposed of, for which were received £1024 16s. 6d. in cash, £1470 7s. 6d. in Scrip, and Land Orders for 3920 acres. On the 29th of February, there remained open for sale or selection, 43,812 acres.

The Land Sales for the month of March, according to the official Returns prepared for publication, and which are now before us, amounted to 9380 acres, 3 roods, and 20 perches. The cash receipts were £1800 3s. 6d.; Scrip £104 10s.; whilst Land Orders for 7464 acres were exercised.

It thus appears that, during the Quarter ending March 31st ult., 24,018 acres, 2 roods, and 37 perches of land were disposed of by the Provincial Government; that £4166 16s. was received in cash; that the sum £2582 7s. 6d. in Scrip of the Land Claims Court, was taken, and that Land Orders for 18,576 acres were exercised. There remained on the 31st March, 55,656 acres, surveyed and open for sale or selection.

It will be evident from these figures that, nothwithstanding the large requirements made upon the Waste Land Department, the supply of surveyed land has been kept, steadily and unceasingly, in excess of the demand. On the 30th April, 1859, the quantity open for selection was but 27,760, and now, after so many months active operation, during which 62,939 acres have been disposed of, the quantity of land remaining ready for sale has been more than doubled.

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From these figures it will be also seen that the process of settlement goes steadily on, unaffected by the untoward state of the relations of the Government of the Colony with the Native tribes at Taranaki. Northward from, and in the neighbourhood of, Auckland, where at present the work of forming new settlements is principally carried on, the Natives are perfectly loyal and peaceful. Tamati Waka Nene, and his friends at the Bay of Islands, have even offered to take up arms on behalf of the Queen, if necessary.

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The European population of New Zealand at the end of 1859, exclusive of the military and naval forces and their families, was:--







Nelson and Marlborough




New Plymouth, Taranaki


Hawke's Bay


Stewart's Island


Total Europeans, exclusive of military and their families


The Military and their families


General Total


Total Natives in all parts of New Zealand


So that the European population exceeded that of the Natives by


Of the above numbers the sexes are thus divided:--

European males


European females



Deficiency of females


The military and their families in New Zealand in December, 1859:





Males in excess of females


Which, added to the


Makes a total of--

Male European population in excess of female


The sexes of the natives are stated to be:--





Sex not stated


Total Natives


So that, reckoning Europeans and Natives, the female population in the islands of New Zealand amounted to 17,868 less than the male population.

1   "New Zealand and its Colonization," by William Swainson, Esq.
2   "New Zealand and its Colonization," by William Swainson, Esq.

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