Object #1003747 from MS-Papers-0032-0325
7 pages written 20 Jan 1872 by Philip Harington in Mauku to Sir Donald McLean
From: Inward letters - Philip Harington, Reference Number MS-Papers-0032-0325 (36 digitised items).
36 letters written from Tauranga, Wellington & Auckland, 1869-1876. Includes letter from Hartington to Stafford, Jun 1869
A transcription/translation of this document (by ATL) appears below.
20th January, 1872
My dear Mr. McLean,
I have just arrived from Waikato after a very hot week's riding, and there is every prospect of my having equally warm weather for the Waiuku and Wairoa Districts. As I have never inspected Waikato before I thought you would like to have a short report at once about the Militia and accordingly send one. The rifles in their possession are generally old and unserviceable as most of them are the same as were issued to the Waikato Regiments years ago. The men complained of them and said they had no chance in competing for Colonial prizes - They also asked for a free issue of ammunition, but I could not grant it without authority as the official letter which I received at Taranaki relative to my having authorized an issue to the Militia of that district, informed me that I was not to do so again without reference to Wellington. I am afraid that by the time your approval is sent to Waikato, it will be too late for practise this year. There is quite a superior class of farmers near Cambridge, who are most anxious to have a
cavalry Corps there, and I venture to think that you might accept their services. They are all provided with good horses and are interested in the security of that part of the district. The roads are so good now that a few cavalry can easily go from one end to the other of the whole district, and when the Snider carbines arrive, a small number of Mounted Men would, in case of emergency, be more serviceable than a large number of infantry - I am very glad that you have ordered the Militia to be drilled and paid once a quarter in the out-districts, and it seems to have given great satisfaction in Waikato. I found many of the men here anxious to learn their drill and have hitherto had no opportunity, and the fact of being paid for the days they are called out, will remove all grumbling. I have arranged the inspections of the several Corps in this district as well as Auckland and the Thames so as not to have a single day unoccupied till end of first week in February and then I shall go to Napier, calling at Poverty Bay if the steamer permits me as I hear there is a small steamer running constantly between Turanganui and Napier. I have never seen the Mil or Vols of that district, and it is advisable if I can do it without any loss of time. It is many years since I have
been in Waikato and of course I see a very great improvement. The weather has been dreadfully hot and the want of rain is becoming serious - The grass in Waikato is not however so much burnt up as in the vicinity of Auckland - I returned from Tauranga on the 7th January by first opportunity after I went down - I found Mrs. Harington and the children all well. Archdeacon and Mrs. Brown paid their first visit to my farm during my stay there - I am afraid this letter is very stupid, but I have a bad headache from riding so much in the sun but I wish to catch the mail -
Inward letters - Philip Harington, Reference Number MS-Papers-0032-0325 (36 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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