My dear McLean,
Just a line to tell you how amazed I am at course Waterhouse has pursued. His set at me is purely gratuitous and a poor return for what I did for him.
I leave you to look after my reputation and interests We have done as well here as it was possible to do.
I am sorry we cannot return by Hero - We must return by way of Melbourne.
Yours very truly,
Notes of a Native Meeting held on board the Colonial P.S. "Luna", between the Hon. D. McLean and Native Chiefs:- 1873 April
"Welcome, Mr. McLean, te Kawhia I saw the mass of your vessel, and therefore I came down. Hearken to my word, - I am the main-stay of Tawhiao's kingdom, and I hold the weapon in my hand: I am not willing that another steamer should enter this harbour. Do not think that I have forgotten how to use my weapon. It is sheathed by Tawhiao's orders, but still I have hold of the handle of it. Welcome, you and itake: I am here, addressing you, face to face. There is no one besides me to be consulted. I have laid down the weapon, now that you, my parent, have come here. I have been accused of being implicated in crimes such as killing of the Rev. Mr. Whitely, and Mr. Todd. I wish you now to take the steamer across to the other arm of Kawhia, and lie there till the morning. Then go away and do not return. I will conceal nothing from you, even at the risk of offending you, but do not be offended. I shall have no objection to Europeans visiting this harbour in a year or
two, but I do not wish them to locate themselves on shore. I want time to consider first, and let angry feeling subside. I wish it to be left for me to invite the vessels. This is good. Now, friend, let the Waikato land which has been confiscated, be returned to us. Let the boundary be at Mangatawhiri."
"We had no object in coming here, but were driven in by the weather. You are one of Tawhiao's followers, but I should prefer to see him before dismissing questions of importance. As for the request that the confiscated land as far as Mangatawhiri, should be returned - this will certainly not be. I may at once assure you that this will not be done. It has been confiscated, and must remain so. We want to see peace and goodwill established on fair terms. Your people have been to Pirongia, but I will not bear malice on that account. You have all suffered disaster in the days gone by, and should now turn your attention to seeking for what will benefit you. Whatever you may say - and there is nothing like speaking openly - you and the few who adhere to you, must have suffered enough by war, te induce you to follow more profitable pursuits. I know of your conduct at Pirongia, and
elsewhere. That is past, and the Europeans are a forgiving people."
"What you say, Tapihana, is good. I went to Ngaruawahia in the early part of 1860. There I met Rewi, Te Wetini, and others. They did not act in accordance with my advice. I remember what they said on that occasion. It is well you should say you are the main-stay of Tawhiao's authority. Speak to Mr. McLean, and lay your grievances before the Parliament; so that our desire with regard to Tawhiao may be achieved. Give the work into my hands now. The hands of all are wearied. The people who used to live at Patea, have been located at Patea; those at Waitatara, at Waitatara. As for the killing of the Rev. Mr. Whitely and of Mr. Todd, and for Te Kooti's proceedings - they are set aside. Act in a different manner henceforth. Give me this day. What will you gain by having recourse to arms? When I went to Ngaruawahia the other day, I found that the very men who are blustering most about taking up arms, were the foremost in selling the land. The Hau Haus are selling the Waikato lands."
"Welcome, Mr. McLean, welcome! There is no
one here to meet you. You came here, to this place, through stress of weather, and not on account of any invitation having been given you. Stay here until the weather is fine."
"I am a bad man. I have been unwilling to meet the Europeans in a friendly manner. I understand what you say. I have now seen you, Mr. McLean, and I am glad that we have met. I shall be willing in a year or so, to allow Europeans free access to this harbour.
"Your words, Wi Tako, are good. Be strong to do your work. You caught me here, and I, hearing of your arrival, came to see you. The hands are tired; and Tawhiao and I are left alone. You have seen me. By and bye you will see Tawhiao. You must come back here again to see us. You mus come back. Now let us go across to the other arm."
"I am pleased with what you say. It is important. No matter if evil be done to you, repay it with good. Let us foster affection, on towards the other. I live on confiscated land. You might occupy my land at Taranaki, if you had chosen to hold it.
So the European properly holds the lands he has taken, and will not give it up. The Ngatiruas, and the other Southern tribes are now located peaceably upon the lands which have been allotted to them."
Interview between the Hon. Mr. McLean and Tutawhiao (Tawhiao's son), Honana, Hone Weteu, and other Chiefs:-
"Mr. McLean, you have come upon us unawares. We did not know of your coming. As it is, you have soon us, and you have come among us regardless of what might be done to you."
"I have protected you this day. I have not been willing to see Europeans or vessels here, but now the way is open for you to see me, and for me to see you. I have seen, to-day, the man who set up the King (Wi Tako). I said to Manuwhiri - "Keep quiet at your own place, and listen to what is going on. My desire was to slay the Europeans, but I have
been thwarted by the secession of others, from my party. This boy. Tutawhiao, has the matter in his hands. I have brought Mr. McLean here to see you."
"I have been for shutting up Kawhia, but you have now trampled on that rule. Come and see us when you like. Tahau (Tapihana) is the wild beast of this place, Kawhia. Your real friend, Potatau, welcomes. No one is more welcome than you, to Kawhia."
"Wi Tako and I would have been glad to have seen Tawhiao, but as we have seen his son, it is all the same. Wi Tako and I will often come to see you."
"Tawhiao is in favour of peace."
"So are we. Our desires, therefore, may be accomplished, as they run in the same direction. Tawhiao preserving order in this district, is evidence of his good intentions. The Government is doing its part to promote peace throughout the country."
"There will be nothing to fear in the future. We have no objection to your coming here. This is the place where I am to meet the Governor. Come and see Tutawhiao, who is here. Tawhiao may be here to-morrow, or next day."
"We are only travellers, and have nothing to say, except to express our gratification at having met you here to-day."
The Native Minister has the honor to submit to His Excellency the Administrator of the Government the following Memorandum on the interviews held at Kawhia on April 1st. 1873.
Your Excellency, accompanied by the Hon. the Colonial Treasurer and the Hon. the Native Minister, left Manakau Harbour on the 31st. March for Wellington on board the Colonial Steamer Luna which, by stress of weather, was obliged to take refuge for the night under the shelter of Albatross point, some Seventy miles South of Manakau.
The following morning, the heavy sea not having abated, it was deemed advisable to enter the neighbouring port of Kawhia.
This excellent harbour has hardly been open to Europeans for a period of years. In 1860 it was closed by the Government with a view to preventing the fraudulent supply of ammunition to hostile natives, and, since then, with but few exceptions, from the hostility of the Natives, it has not been navigated by vessels.
One of these exceptions was the entry into it of H.M.S. Elipse, Commander Fremantle, in 1865(?).
The inhabitants of its shores have, since the commencement of the war of 1860, been determined adherents of the King party and most persistant opponents of the Government.
Your Excellency will have observed that on this occasion, however, the Luna had not been long anchored in
the Southern Channel before numerous natives made their appearance and came on board in a friendly manner. Among them was one chief, Tapihana, whose hostility to the Europeans was almost proverbial, but who nevertheless this time laid aside the sentiments which had previously animated him.
At the meeting held with the natives assembled on the deck of the Luna he put forth his views in a form, much modified from his former ideas, and his expressions may be taken as symptoms of a manifest alteration in his feelings He still however preferred the usual Hau Hau request that the confiscated land in Waikato should be returned to their former owners, but was informed that it was entirely out of the question that such a demand could be conceded. (Vide following page A.B. and insert.)
After this interview the Luna, with some of the Natives on board, steamed to the North shore of the Harbour, where it was understood that a son of the Maori King was residing.
The Native Minister landed and was most courteously received by Tu Tawhiao, the son of the King. In connection with this, the Native Minister would wish to draw attention to the great advantage which has resulted from admitting Native chiefs to the Legislature and enabling them to participate in the administration of affairs. An instance was given on this occasion
by the Hon. Wi Tako who displayed ready debating powers in his speech to his countrymen, in which he brought forward a series of arguments to prove how disastrous to them was a state of war, in even of isolation, in comparison with one of peace and free intercourse with the Europeans. He also answered the demands made for the restoration of the confiscated lands by shewing that, by Maori ancestral customs, conquest and occupation gave full title to lands; and that the natives present were actually occupying territory of which his own ancestors had been dispossessed by their forefathers, and by the elderly chiefs who were with him; a short conference was held, and an invitation to come on board was accepted, when the party was introduced to Your Excellency.
It will be apparent that such an infraction of the strict rules of seclusion which have hitherto been observed by the King party, and that, moreover, committed by so influential a person as Tu Tawhiao, is likely to lead to happy results. Your Excellency will have observed the deference with which your visitor was treated by chiefs so much his elders; and this regard for him attains a still greater height among the younger members of the King party.
From what passed at the meeting, and from what fell from the lips of Tu Tawhiao and the chiefs with him it is probable that, had it been consistent with your other duties to make some delay in Kawhia, the King would have followed his son's example.
As it is, however, the Native Minister begs to point out that this visit denotes a great change. It was made in direct contravention of the spirit of exclusion which has for so long actuated this extreme section of the Hauhaus, and appears to indicate a desire to do away with the isolation to which that party has condemned itself, and with the prejudices and jealousies with which Europeans have been regarded.
The Native Minister hopes that further intercourse with the Kawhia natives may have the effect of not only improving but also of consolidating relations between the two races.