Object #1007867 from MS-Papers-0032-0279

6 pages written 19 Oct 1870 by Sir William Fox in Westoe to Sir Donald McLean

From: Inward letters - Sir William Fox, Reference Number MS-Papers-0032-0279 (45 digitised items). 43 letters written by Fox from Wellington, Wanganui, Auckland, Grahamstown, Rangitikei, Marton, Dunedin, 1870-1871. Includes letter from Charles J Taylor to Fox, Feb 1870; Fox to Mete Kingi, 1870; incomplete letter to Fox (written from Patea, Mar 1870); Fox to Gisborne, Apr 1870; Fox to Gisborne (copy), May 1871; J Booth to Fox, Wanganui (copy), Apr 1871; McLean to Fox, 1871; Albert J Allen [?] to Fox, Aug 1871.

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

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Page 1 of 6. View high-resolution image

English (ATL)

Westoe, Marton,
19. 10. 70


My dear McLean,

I received your letter and Haringtons official Memo. As regards your coming here, it is of course of no consequence to a week or a few days, and if you are busy there is no need to hurry. I am glad that Mateni te Wheake is likely to be useful, but I have always found him inclined to "shout with the hounds and run with the hare".

Page 2 of 6. View high-resolution image

English (ATL)

At the trial at Manawatu though he had signed the Deed of sale he appeared as one of the principal Witnesses against us, and tried to shuffle out of the fact of having signed, tolling a barefaced falsehood about it, which he was convicted of out of his own mouth.

In treating with the dissentients remember that all their story has been twice sifted to the bottom, and verdict twice given against them. Would it not be well also to hear what the Ngatiapas and Rangitane's have to say. I suppose you will see them when you come up. We cannot consent to re open the decision of the Court on the point of ownership, if we had the power, which we have not - the question must be limited to that put in Sewells letter to Travers. The dissentients ought to state what they want. The only statements at all definite I have heard on that point was from old Parakaia, who said at a meeting here "The Court has decided. Let that

Page 3 of 6. View high-resolution image

English (ATL)

go for nothing. Let the three tribes meet and divide the land. After that we will give Dr. Feathn. a small piece - a very little piece will do." This no doubt is what McDonald means - or something like it. We can accept no "division of the land" except that which the Court has made - the only question is how is the decision of the Court to be carried out. Travers said it had not been carried out properly. We have asked "how," but have not yet got any clear reply,

Page 4 of 6. View high-resolution image

English (ATL)

still less any suggestion how it may be done so as to settle the matter.

Harington's answer is very "red tapy". As regards the Adjutancy, it is a mere put off to say that Hayward cannot do the work in addition to his own. He would undertake it, and I have no doubt can do it - in fact he does it now, and Jordan holds a sinecure with £300 a year, while Hayward does the real work at little more than half the money. It is impossible to justify both Turner and Jordan. There cannot

Page 5 of 6. View high-resolution image

English (ATL)

be real work for the two and indeed unless when a panic occurs I should hardly think for one. Remember our military and ex military friends live by war and its surround-ings, and will always be trying to increase their number and shew reasons why.

The arms, is the old reply I used to get in our friend Haultain's time - "Why is Fox in such a hurry?" They were promised then and we have got just the same now as we had at the commencement. There is a most zealous spirit among volunteers here; but they will not come forward to drill with broomsticks. If we are to encourage volunteers we must make up our minds to give them what is really necessary.

The capitation will I think satisfy them now. The Wanganui Cavalry having dropped or almost entirely so their money will be available for others. But arms are as essential as the men, and if we had them I believe every man who has a horse would join. In open countries like this Cavalry is the force and can keep it

Page 6 of 6. View high-resolution image

English (ATL)

against any number of Maories.

We should like to know when you are likely to be here, at least a week before if possible, get the Volunteers and Militia ready for Inspection. You must see them as well as Harington - it will go far to encouraging them.


In haste, Yours very faithfully,
Wm. Fox.

English (ATL)

Westoe, Marton,
19. 10. 70


My dear McLean,

I received your letter and Haringtons official Memo. As regards your coming here, it is of course of no consequence to a week or a few days, and if you are busy there is no need to hurry. I am glad that Mateni te Wheake is likely to be useful, but I have always found him inclined to "shout with the hounds and run with the hare". At the trial at Manawatu though he had signed the Deed of sale he appeared as one of the principal Witnesses against us, and tried to shuffle out of the fact of having signed, tolling a barefaced falsehood about it, which he was convicted of out of his own mouth.

In treating with the dissentients remember that all their story has been twice sifted to the bottom, and verdict twice given against them. Would it not be well also to hear what the Ngatiapas and Rangitane's have to say. I suppose you will see them when you come up. We cannot consent to re open the decision of the Court on the point of ownership, if we had the power, which we have not - the question must be limited to that put in Sewells letter to Travers. The dissentients ought to state what they want. The only statements at all definite I have heard on that point was from old Parakaia, who said at a meeting here "The Court has decided. Let that go for nothing. Let the three tribes meet and divide the land. After that we will give Dr. Feathn. a small piece - a very little piece will do." This no doubt is what McDonald means - or something like it. We can accept no "division of the land" except that which the Court has made - the only question is how is the decision of the Court to be carried out. Travers said it had not been carried out properly. We have asked "how," but have not yet got any clear reply, still less any suggestion how it may be done so as to settle the matter.

Harington's answer is very "red tapy". As regards the Adjutancy, it is a mere put off to say that Hayward cannot do the work in addition to his own. He would undertake it, and I have no doubt can do it - in fact he does it now, and Jordan holds a sinecure with £300 a year, while Hayward does the real work at little more than half the money. It is impossible to justify both Turner and Jordan. There cannot be real work for the two and indeed unless when a panic occurs I should hardly think for one. Remember our military and ex military friends live by war and its surround-ings, and will always be trying to increase their number and shew reasons why.

The arms, is the old reply I used to get in our friend Haultain's time - "Why is Fox in such a hurry?" They were promised then and we have got just the same now as we had at the commencement. There is a most zealous spirit among volunteers here; but they will not come forward to drill with broomsticks. If we are to encourage volunteers we must make up our minds to give them what is really necessary.

The capitation will I think satisfy them now. The Wanganui Cavalry having dropped or almost entirely so their money will be available for others. But arms are as essential as the men, and if we had them I believe every man who has a horse would join. In open countries like this Cavalry is the force and can keep it against any number of Maories.

We should like to know when you are likely to be here, at least a week before if possible, get the Volunteers and Militia ready for Inspection. You must see them as well as Harington - it will go far to encouraging them.


In haste, Yours very faithfully,
Wm. Fox.

Part of:
Inward letters - Sir William Fox, Reference Number MS-Papers-0032-0279 (45 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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