January 3rd. 1874.
On receipt of your telegram I went to Kaupokonui and saw Manaia. He is very much pleased at the prospect of your coming up soon, and will meet you at Patea or Wanganui, when ever you send word for him to come. He says he is verry much pestered by people coming to him constantly about leasing land. He pressed me hard to know how the Government viewed the unoccupied confiscated lands north of Waingorongoro, I replied I could not say that he would learn that when he went to see you. Since the purchase of the Tohua and Puketapu blocks last year the natives on this coast regard that purchase as the abandoning by the Government of the unoccupied confiscated lands. Manaia says there is opposition to selling or letting any lands on this coast to the Government, but that does not affect him or his people, he says the fern is not bringing him in any money.
Manaia has always kept distinct from Te Whiti, I do not think he ever was present at any Parihaka meetings, therefor does not fall into that Man's idea of remaining isolated, and not mingling with Europeans. I would not enter into any conversation with Manaia with/regard to the land, as I am not aware how you view those lands, I told him that anything he had to say must remain til he saw you, that I
knew nothing except what your telegram stated.
He then said you must not mention what we have been talking of to Mr. Parris or any one, I wish to deal with Mr. McLean alone - as he considered he had been overlooked.
I think these old chiefs such as W. King and Manaia have been jealous and sulky, at the great court and attention paid to Te Whiti, he is a troublesome young upstart, opposed in every way to the Government, yet he has been recognized and treated as a high chief, raised in fact by ourselves from an upstart to a man of some influence. This of course was done with a good object, by Mr. Parris to get that bit of road through, but in doing so, and to a certain extent neglecting the older chiefs of standing, he has offended, and lost influence with them. I know that this feeling of jealousy is strong among the friendly natives, those who supported the Government to put the road and wire through, are very jealous of too much court being paid to those who oppose the Government. It is I think the great attention paid Te Whiti that has turned W. King against us, and caused Manaia to regard himself as neglected. Now that a road can be taken by the back of the mountains, Te Whiti can be allowed to drop in importance, when the Government cease to pay him any attention he will soon fall in Native estimation.
Natives on the coast generally are verry well behaved, I have at times trouble with the Hau Haus north in
respect to stray and lost cattle, but they are becoming more reasonable, to deal with.
I wrote to you at Napier in reference to public house here, I have received no reply. Mr. Parris and I cannot agree in this matter, he has never replied to my letter of the 10th., but told landlord he could continue retailing, at present the Landlord acts on my instruction to sell by the bottle only - this answers well and Natives are satisfied.
Your obedt. servt.
I would wish for definite instructions respecting the public house - at present it rests with the Landlord wither to follow my instructions or those of Mr. Parris.
I work with the Natives, by personal influence and consulting with their leading men - I have never found force necessary nor have I force to use if necessary - to quell a large drunken mob if they become excited and in those cases reasoning does not go far. Excuse my shaky hand as I had my hand injured by a horse yesterday and is painful to hold the pen. P.G.W.