Object #1000045 from MS-Papers-0032-0648

3 pages written 1 May 1869 by Dr Peter Wilson in New Plymouth District

From: Inward letters - P G Wilson, Reference Number MS-Papers-0032-0648 (34 digitised items). Letters written from New Plymouth, Opunake and Wanganui, 1855-1876

A transcription/translation of this document (by ATL) appears below.

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English (ATL)

New Plymouth

May 1st 1869

My dear Sir,

I was at my mothers today and on her learning that I was the author of a letter in the Taranaki Herald of 24th signed Colonist, she requested me to get her a copy to post for you, having posted her letter yesterday, I write to explain one passage, or the parts of that letter bearing on the Native Office. It is not so much the native office, as the way it is at present conducted, and the powers vested in its officials. In fact what the Taranaki people aim at is to get rid of Mr. Paris, who at present reigns supreme here, and seems to be guided by what he styles the friendly natives Our friendly natives here are not strictly friendly as the Arawas on the east coast or Wanganuis. They are so connected by marage and relationship with those in rebelion that very naturally their sympathies are with their own countrymen, and we can in no way blame them, it is natural, if we look back to our own history we find the same feeling when the English tried to conquer Scotland, only in this, we are a civilized power against avages (and the occupation of the surplus country, that the natives cannot use or occupy) by a civilized race we know to be for their own advantage and benefit, though they may not be sufficiently enlightened to see it.

I consider that opening up and occupying the surplus country not used or required by the natives is as beneficial to the natives race as to our own, as it enhances the value of their own lands.

Every obstacle that is thrown in the way of such a project is as injurious to the native race as to the Europeans and prolonging the war by adopting half measures to supress rebelion, is in the end a greater sacrafice of life to both races, besides retarding the developement of the local resources of the country, unnecessarily for a number of years.

Our friendly or rather neutral natives here cannot of course see things in this light, therefor to allow ourselves to be guided by them, when they set their face against making roads to open up the country is yealding to advice injurious to both races.

Mr. Paris oposes road making, because it will iritate our friendly natives, and on this account, it is I believe that this Government have not attempted to open up the interior of the country.

While men holding such views have so much influence, the country can never prosper, until the interior of the county is opened up we can not feel safe or secure, and until confidence is restored we cannot hope to induce imigration, nor will those in the country spend capital in improvements.

What I mean in my letter by the Native Office, is geting rid, or curtailing the powers, of persons holding such views, or allowing themselves to be led by semi friendly natives as Mr. Paris seems to be. My letter might appear, to some unfeeling or bloodthirsty, but having explained my views as I have in this endeavoured to do I hope you will give me credit for being actuated by a desire to see this miserably protracted war ended, that people may in safty to their legitimate occupation, and by developing the resources of the country ensure its prosperity, as at present we can only look forward to years of uncertainty and ruin.

In your letter to my mother you express some fear that our Taramaki settlers will again return J. C. Richmond, of that there is no chance, that family are as unpopular now, as they were once popular, had he not refused to resign, when here the other day, his constituents would have requested him to do so, but as he stated at a public meeting he would not, it would have been waste of paper getting up an address to him.

The people here generally are very indignant at the conduct of the Government towards you. I think it only wanted that to give the finishing stroke to their unpopularity.

We have a new member elected in place of Major Atkinson (resigned) our Provincial Secretary Mr. Kelly was returned. I send you one two last weeks papers, in which his views are expressed, they are clear and to the point.

I must apologise for taking up so much of your time, or writing at all but I wished merely to give my view, and reasons for writing as I did in my last to the Taranaki Herald.

I remain Dear Sir
P. Wilson
Captain T.C. Vols.

Part of:
Inward letters - P G Wilson, Reference Number MS-Papers-0032-0648 (34 digitised items)
Series 1 Inward letters (English), Reference Number Series 1 Inward letters (English) (14501 digitised items)
McLean Papers, Reference Number MS-Group-1551 (30238 digitised items)

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