Object #1007670 from MS-Papers-0032-0581

4 pages written 8 Oct 1859 by Thomas Henry Smith in Auckland Region to Sir Donald McLean in Wellington

From: Inward letters - Thomas Henry Smith, Reference Number MS-Papers-0032-0581 (69 digitised items). Letters written from Auckland, Maketu, on board SS Egmont off Napier; on board SS Lord Ashley off Napier, 1856-1872. Includes piece-level inventory, 1856-1866 (excludes letters from 1969 accession)

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

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English (ATL)


Oct. 8th. 1859.

My dear McLean,

It is hopeless work writing to you, as no one can give a probable guess when, or where, letters may find you. We were greatly disappointed at getting no news of you by this last ''Swan''. However, as in duty bound, I must drop you a line just to say that the Native Office is not yet closed nor the Department defunct - in spite of the attacks from our editorial friends. The correspondence of the office is increasing and is altogether too much for one person to attend to unless able to give undivided attention to it, while the office is beseiged between 10 and 4 with natives and Europeans on all kinds of business. Rogan left for Whangarei yesterday - to start a survey of a new block offered he proposes on his return to pay a visit to Kaipara to prosecute negotiations and direct surveys - a Mr. Smith, of Taranaki, has been written to, to come up and carry on the Kaipara surveys. Drummond Hay is still on the establishment and out on a reconnoitring expedition through his district with permission to visit Tauranga and Waikato if thought advisable. The Omaha question is not settled and I am afraid is not likely to be present. Kiri will not allow the settlers to occupy - he claims the peninsula forming the north head of Omaha - more than 600 acres in extent and including the principal portion of the township as now laid off. The view taken by you was so decided against Kiri that I do not see how his claim can now be recognised. We have told him ''by direction of H.E.'' that his claim cannot be admitted. Meanwhile he maintains possession and is cutting the firewood. Rogan has ascertained that a mark was made in the ground in the presence of the Surveyor who cut the lines - before payment of the final instalment.

The purpose for which the mark was made does not appear to have been properly explained, or understood by the surveyor who does not admit that he was aware of Kiri's wish to reserve the piece of land in question. It is proposed to write to Kiri requiring him to desist from cutting the firewood pending a settlement of the question which must be discussed between him and Te Makarini (who negotiated the purchase with him) on the return of the latter. The affair at the Bay - putting to death a reputed 'tangata makutu'. At the instance of Marsh Brown and other Assessors is a most unfortunate occurrence just after the establishment of the new Courts. I do not see how we can consistently keep Marsh's name on the list of assessors. There is much to be said in extenuation of the crime but at the same time the Govt. by continuing to recognise those concerned in it would become implicated and liable to the charge of sanctioning it. Clendon will be down shortly when we shall, after consulting him, come to some decision as to what is to be done in the case.

I hope McKay who has kindly promised to take charge of this, will find you in Wellington if so he will tell you in what position the Arahura question stands. The Governor seems determined to take the present opportunity of securing to the natives ceding their territory for the purposes of colonization a fair share in the advantages which result from Europeanoccupation of the country. McKay is a very nice fellow and a capital officer. The Governor much regrets not having been able to show him attention while here - the fact is his card was overlooked and the Governor forgot to mention him to Mrs. Gore Browne who has the arrangements for invitations, untill too late. I was sorry also not to be able to show him any civility but living so out of the way an invitation to come and see you is scarcely a compliment.

Things are going on tolerably smoothly at the office excepting that there are at present an enormous amount of arrears to get up. I find my ride in and out daily takes up too much time - but I believe without it or some equivalent amount of exercise my health would soon fail. My mother is about as usual - up and down - Mrs. Henry is well. We have all been sufferers from this epidemic throat disease but are getting over it. The ladies desired very kind regards to you.

Believe me, my dear McLean,
Very sincerely yours,
Thos. H. Smith.
Donald McLean Esq. Wellington.

Part of:
Inward letters - Thomas Henry Smith, Reference Number MS-Papers-0032-0581 (69 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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