Object #1005410 from MS-Papers-0032-0552

3 pages written 29 Jan 1869 by Henry Robert Russell in Herbert, Mount and Napier City to Sir Donald McLean

From: Inward letters - H R Russell, Reference Number MS-Papers-0032-0552 (113 digitised items). 108 letters written from Whangamoana, Wellington, Mount Herbert, Te Aute, Waipukerau, and Napier, 1853-1872. Includes piece-level inventory (1969 accessions not included)

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

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English (ATL)

His Honor The Superintendent Napier
Mount Herbert

29th Jany. 1869


I have to acknowledge your letter of the 22nd inst., in reply to mine about the proposed Telegraph Station at Waipawa, in which you state that you understand the Agreement between the General Government, and the Residents of Waipawa under which an office was to be erected and opened at that Township has been concluded with the Hon. The Postmaster General at Wellington, and you should not think it right to interfere with the arrangements entered into.

I would, however, remind you that subsequent to these arrangements, which were very much pressed on the Post Master General by Mr. Ormond, a Member of your Honor's Executive, the incidence of the cost has been made to fall, by an act of the Legislature, on the Province and not on the Telegraph Department. This I think entirely alters the question. If the General Government had put up the office at their own expense, and the Waipawa Residents had guaranteed the expense of maintaining it, the Province was in no wise concerned as a Province, and the clearly expressed resolution of the Council at its last Session would have been followed. Now if the Building is put up the Province will be saddled with an expenditure which its crippled finances can very ill bear, and that contrary to the resolution and votes of the Council. No public advantage will be gained as an equivalent, even altho' it were just to tax the community for what at the best can be but a doubtful advantage to a few people.

Since receiving your letter of the 22nd I have communicated with the Postmaster General, as it seemed to be doubted how the cost of the Building would be charged, notwithstanding that Mr. Lemon's statement had been conveyed by me both to Mr. Ormond and Your Honor. Mr. Hull in reply to my recommendation that he should inform you privately now it would be, says ''I can see no occasion for any further communication to Mr. McLean - He is aware that according to Law the cost of the Building at Waipawa must be charged to the Province''.

I would, therefore, once more, even at the risk of being thought too pertinacious, respectfully urge on your Honor, in these evil days, to ask the Postmaster General to delay the erection of the Building till the Council meets and considers the matter on its merits. It will meet in a few months, and the delay cannot be of any material consequence. By the terms of the advertisement the Tenders called for need not be accepted and there is no wish on the part of the Telegraph Department, but the contrary, to push the thing.

It is entirely on public grounds that I oppose the expenditure of public money on such an object.

I have the honor to remain Your Honor's very obed. servt.
H.R. Russell

Part of:
Inward letters - H R Russell, Reference Number MS-Papers-0032-0552 (113 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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