19th Sep., 1857
My dear Sir,
I have been trying to assist Parris during the week in bringing about a proper feeling amongst the natives immediately interested in the Ikamoana, with a view of settling that question before the arrival of the 'Dinapore', but the unlucky position of the Ninia natives has for the present prevented the accomplishment of our object. They say, they wish to sell the whole of the land between the Mangoraka river and the Bell Block, and inland as far as the Putatutonga, leaving Katatore to sell the block across and inland of the Mangoraka to the Wakangerengere and on to the Mountain. They also say, why should Katatore offer Tarurutangi and retain Ikamoana, let them be sold together.
Katatore on the other hand, claiming control over nearly all the country, does not ask payment for Tarurutangi, which has been already paid for, but desires to throw it in with his offer, at the same time I am glad to say, inviting the Ninia natives to share with his people the money which may be paid for it. He wishes the Ikamoana to remain over for the present, intending to sell it at the proper moment, to do so now, he says, would greatly vex Ngatiruanui and might bring them down upon him.
Angry discussions have taken place amongst the Ikamoana natives in consequence of Ihaia having applied to Parris for flour as payment for the Ikamoana, which resulted in the abandonment of the pa, and equally applied to the Ninia natives in the event of future misunderstanding between them and katatore.
As the continued occupation of the Ikamoana is against a settlement of the land question, Parris proposed that I should endeavour to persuade Ihaia to destroy the pa and return to Waitara, and I am not without hopes that this point may be attained.
We must carefully avoid giving offence to either party and most of all to Katatore, whom Wi puku nui and Ngatiruanui would gladly again join. So long as Katatore remains firm, we are tolerably sure of land, and these natives are fully impressed with that belief.
Katatore has received a letter from Ngatiruanui, telling him to discontinue writing to them, and rumour has it, that they intend to come and take away their dead from this place. In consequence, Katatore has reduced the size of his pa, and thrown up earthworks, to provide against possible attack.
Wi Nui, was at the Kaipakopako last Monday endeavouring to turn Katatore and concluded by telling him that
in the event of trouble overtaking him, not to seek assistance from the Waitara. A mere threat aimed at the wrong person, for I believe Wi would protect him even against Ngatiruanui.
It is very gratifying to witness the breaking up of the League and to feel that as funds are provided, negociations can be successfully persecuted.
A party of 40 Ngatiruanui Natives arrived at Warea this week, the object of their visit has not yet transpired. Tamati te Ito is now at work there.
The schooner 'Jane Peata' is here from Nelson, I learn that 118 young natives had arrived there, for the diggings, from Wellington 26, Porirua 24, Waikanae 26, Otaki 16, Warekauri 26. Only 1 native has left us at present, Teopira, of Paraiti.
To:- McLean Esq.