Object #1000791 from MS-Papers-0032-0217

5 pages written 16 Jun 1870 by Henry Tacy Clarke in Tauranga to Sir Donald McLean

From: Inward letters - Henry Tacy Clarke, Reference Number MS-Papers-0032-0217 (61 digitised items). 59 letters written from Tauranga, Maketu, Auckland & Waimate, 1861-1870. Includes letter to Hare Reweti (Charles Davis) from Manuhiri with explanatory note on verso from Louis Hetet, 1870.

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

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English (ATL)

Private. Tauranga

June 16th. 1870.



My dear Mr McLean,

I have just returned from the Lakes and am in time to send this off by the "Tauranga" which leaves in about an hour. I shall not go to Auckland by this opportunity but will by next. I received your Telegram of the 6th. Inst on the 14th. I am happy to tell you everything in this District is looking up. The Roads are progressing fast, in another month we shall be able to have a first rate dry road to the Lakes. The work done is a credit to Fox and his people - and as to cheepness bears no comparison to anything I have yet heard of.

Both regard to the Road through the forest direct from Tauranga - which was one of the great reasons for my trip to the

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English (ATL)

western side of Rotorua Lake.- I was afraid at one time that it was a deadlock. But I think we shall get on now. In the first place, they wanted us to buy a right of Road - this I would not hear of, and I argued the the matter so successfully that they were silenced. They asked £200 per mile (really a very low rate considering the work to be done). I told them that £100 or 130 was sufficient here again we came to a standstill. I then pressed for the survey to go on after some discussion this was allowed and I promised them I would make a compromise for clearing the forest and forming the Road at £150 per mile but that it must remain in abeyance till it was approved by you. I told them that I expected a good scolding for my being so "Ngawari". They were very much pleased and told me to let them know as soon as I have an answer from you - £150 per mile for a road where all the cuttings are to be 16 ft. wide at least - and a gradient of 1 to 10 extremely reasonable - but to help us along in future, I hope you will make it appear a great favor I have considered the matter well and I do not think we could do better, both economically and politically. Let me know at once please - write to Auckland.

I am quite alive to the fact that this District requires energetic supervision and as far as lies in my individual power I do all I can - I wish I could do more. The flesh is weak altho' the spirit is willing. I am very sorry to say that I am not able to do as I used - this pain on my head is very trying to me, and I am rather anxious about it. Give me some assistance - whene is Hamlin? I cannot go on as I am. The Arawas are crying out and he would relieve me of all matters of detail. You know I am not afraid

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English (ATL)

of work, but there is a limit to all human endeavour. Do sand me help for the Arawa District as soon as you can, if not I must do as well as I can.

I am happy to report that the Arawas are in very good temper and are anxious to go to work on the Roads. Altogether I am very well satisfied with my trip. I will report officially as soon as I have a little leisure. The paying is going on. But oh! what an awfully expensive arrangement the last expedition has been. You can form no conception. I hope it will never occur again. I want the £4,000 I sent for to square up everything.

I am quite disgusted with these Telegraph arrangements. I am not at all surprised at the natives setting up their backs. One of the pretiest little

Page 4 of 5. View high-resolution image

English (ATL)

woods on the Rotorua Road has been quite ruined. Two years ago I gave the natives a good scolding for destroying some of the scrub - and now they turn upon me. The natives ask compensation for this wanton destruction of their forest upon which they set great store. From a sense of justice I shall be compelled to recommend their application. I call it wanton because there is not the least earthly use in it. If we fancy that cutting a strip of forest two chains wide is going to prevent timber injuring the wire we are mistaken, and I think that we are bringing about the evil we are trying to prevent. It is the very worst thing possible to open a forest so that the wind can play with all its force on the standing

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English (ATL)

timber. - "taihoa tatou ka kite". One thing too that has annoyed me very much is the Europeans entrusted with the work have been actually cutting up the peach trees in the old cultivations trees that have been planted by the owners of the property. Can we wonder at the Natives being angry -

I have an idea that it would be a good plan to engage a principal native Chief at the villages through which the line passes to take care of the wire - say one at Maungatapu - and another between Maketu and Rotoiti - at a salary of £30 or £40 per annum. This would give them a vested interest in the matter and they would look upon it as their "taonga" - talk the matter over with Mr. Vogel and let me know and I will put it in official form. We must not despise the day of small things and the amount of ignorance that has to be bought over.

I got your note of the 6th. from Wellington - very many thanks for your thoughts of me. I hope for the sake of helping you all I can that I may keep my helth. You have all my heart and soul in the work.


Yours very faithfully,
Hy. T. Clarke.
P.S. Of course you have heard long since that Hopkins is here. Capn. Turner is to do the survey through the forest from the Rotorua side. I can depend upon him. I am very much afraid that Gundy is very injudicious and unwittingly puts dangerous ideas into native heads. H.T.C.

English (ATL)

Private. Tauranga

June 16th. 1870.



My dear Mr McLean,

I have just returned from the Lakes and am in time to send this off by the "Tauranga" which leaves in about an hour. I shall not go to Auckland by this opportunity but will by next. I received your Telegram of the 6th. Inst on the 14th. I am happy to tell you everything in this District is looking up. The Roads are progressing fast, in another month we shall be able to have a first rate dry road to the Lakes. The work done is a credit to Fox and his people - and as to cheepness bears no comparison to anything I have yet heard of.

Both regard to the Road through the forest direct from Tauranga - which was one of the great reasons for my trip to the western side of Rotorua Lake.- I was afraid at one time that it was a deadlock. But I think we shall get on now. In the first place, they wanted us to buy a right of Road - this I would not hear of, and I argued the the matter so successfully that they were silenced. They asked £200 per mile (really a very low rate considering the work to be done). I told them that £100 or 130 was sufficient here again we came to a standstill. I then pressed for the survey to go on after some discussion this was allowed and I promised them I would make a compromise for clearing the forest and forming the Road at £150 per mile but that it must remain in abeyance till it was approved by you. I told them that I expected a good scolding for my being so "Ngawari". They were very much pleased and told me to let them know as soon as I have an answer from you - £150 per mile for a road where all the cuttings are to be 16 ft. wide at least - and a gradient of 1 to 10 extremely reasonable - but to help us along in future, I hope you will make it appear a great favor I have considered the matter well and I do not think we could do better, both economically and politically. Let me know at once please - write to Auckland.

I am quite alive to the fact that this District requires energetic supervision and as far as lies in my individual power I do all I can - I wish I could do more. The flesh is weak altho' the spirit is willing. I am very sorry to say that I am not able to do as I used - this pain on my head is very trying to me, and I am rather anxious about it. Give me some assistance - whene is Hamlin? I cannot go on as I am. The Arawas are crying out and he would relieve me of all matters of detail. You know I am not afraid of work, but there is a limit to all human endeavour. Do sand me help for the Arawa District as soon as you can, if not I must do as well as I can.

I am happy to report that the Arawas are in very good temper and are anxious to go to work on the Roads. Altogether I am very well satisfied with my trip. I will report officially as soon as I have a little leisure. The paying is going on. But oh! what an awfully expensive arrangement the last expedition has been. You can form no conception. I hope it will never occur again. I want the £4,000 I sent for to square up everything.

I am quite disgusted with these Telegraph arrangements. I am not at all surprised at the natives setting up their backs. One of the pretiest little woods on the Rotorua Road has been quite ruined. Two years ago I gave the natives a good scolding for destroying some of the scrub - and now they turn upon me. The natives ask compensation for this wanton destruction of their forest upon which they set great store. From a sense of justice I shall be compelled to recommend their application. I call it wanton because there is not the least earthly use in it. If we fancy that cutting a strip of forest two chains wide is going to prevent timber injuring the wire we are mistaken, and I think that we are bringing about the evil we are trying to prevent. It is the very worst thing possible to open a forest so that the wind can play with all its force on the standing timber. - "taihoa tatou ka kite". One thing too that has annoyed me very much is the Europeans entrusted with the work have been actually cutting up the peach trees in the old cultivations trees that have been planted by the owners of the property. Can we wonder at the Natives being angry -

I have an idea that it would be a good plan to engage a principal native Chief at the villages through which the line passes to take care of the wire - say one at Maungatapu - and another between Maketu and Rotoiti - at a salary of £30 or £40 per annum. This would give them a vested interest in the matter and they would look upon it as their "taonga" - talk the matter over with Mr. Vogel and let me know and I will put it in official form. We must not despise the day of small things and the amount of ignorance that has to be bought over.

I got your note of the 6th. from Wellington - very many thanks for your thoughts of me. I hope for the sake of helping you all I can that I may keep my helth. You have all my heart and soul in the work.


Yours very faithfully,
Hy. T. Clarke.
P.S. Of course you have heard long since that Hopkins is here. Capn. Turner is to do the survey through the forest from the Rotorua side. I can depend upon him. I am very much afraid that Gundy is very injudicious and unwittingly puts dangerous ideas into native heads. H.T.C.

Part of:
Inward letters - Henry Tacy Clarke, Reference Number MS-Papers-0032-0217 (61 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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