Object #1009351 from MS-Papers-0032-0565

5 pages written 6 Feb 1859 by William Nicholas Searancke in Greytown to Sir Donald McLean

From: Inward letters - W N Searancke, Reference Number MS-Papers-0032-0565 (58 digitised items). 60 letters written from Waiuku, Ahuriri, Waipa, Auckland, Awhitu, Wellington, Masterton, Wairarapa, Otaki, Manawatu, Tuaranganui, Te Purupuru, Greytown, Rangitikei, Waikato, Whangarei, Ngaruawhaia. Includes piece-level inventory (1969 accessions not added). Contains letters from Searancke to McLean with regard to the purchase of Maori land in the lower North Island in the 1850s and 1860s, in Wairarapa, Horowhenua and Manawatu; the letters also contain information about disputes that arose from the sales among Maori and between Maori and the Government; there is also information about the disposition of Maori, and their attitudes towards the King Movement, in these areas during the New Zealand wars of the early 1860s There are also some letters about Searancke's work in the Waikato district as a resident magistrate, with information about his observations of the Kingitanga

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

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English (ATL)

February 6th 1859

My dear Sir,

I have to acknowledge your favour of the 15th ult. and am glad to hear that there is a probability of my obraining some Survey assistance at last. I note your remark respecting Rawiri Piharau and regret to say that so far from his being satisfied with the section at Tauherenikau that he is resolutely determined to retain the land on which he is diving at Torohanga in vain I have reasoned with him in fact the secret of the whole matter is this that he wants to stop near the lake and his eel pas there is therefore but one of two means to be adopted, removed him by decided measures or to compensate the European by a fair arbitration for his hand allegedly detained by Rawiri, this latter might be done. I think by giving him Rawiri's section at Tauherenikau - he oi.

I am aware that £100 was paid for Horses out of Tamihana's money by his order, but if it was paid out the money in Mr. Huttons hands £125 where is the bal. of £25 and the interest up to this time of it (I mean the £25). Cooper has given me all the papers on these matters and your authority to him. If what you hint is correct that you are likely to be in Wellington soon a few minutes will clear up all these matters, by the bye I quite forgot to mention to you that I have received the sum of £20 on account of Taringakuri's section at the Hutt towards paying off the balance due to whom am I to pay this I shall not pay it to anyone without your instruction. I called at Huangarua, but Revans had left for Otago and Capt. Smith was out exploring but will pay another visit that way in a few days he oi ratena.

I have done a pretty good stroke of bisiness this last month, having completed the purchase of about 50,000 a cres or perhaps a little more in one block on the Mangaraki, I was compelled to make 4 different purchases but the block is complete and if I have time I will add a bit more to it. The sum it has cost is £2500 in all including former advances I have been compelled to complete this purchase without referring to you or the Govt. by the troubles existing among the Natives in this district by acting decidedly on this matter. I have acted for the best and entirely on my own judgement another thing that rather forced me on is the great demand for land here now, If I have acted injudiciously in this purchase, let me know I should not feel the anxiety I do where it not for certain remarks made to me by two men who paid a visit here lately and which are better delivered by word of mouth than in writing, being still very busy I shall not have time to forward the deeds for two or three weeks at soonest, I have actually perambulated the boundaries (thro bush etc. etc.) of each Block and commenced making a traverse survey of the largest block, but in this I was stopped by inflammation in my eyes which laid me up for a week at the Ahiaruhe in the reserves I shall strongly recommend Crown Grants to be given to the Natives and I trust to be able to get all the land surveyed before it is open for sale, I have also settled and and perambulated the boundaries of Tamaiti heke and Land also Nini's at Wainuiora and paid the balances and now on my way to Otaraia to settle the purchase of the Lands about Bidwellsand the Ruamahanga by Gillies and Mc Masters and then if time allows round the Coast. I am fairly disposed to settle every difficulty here if I had only time and not such an extended district to attend to. I need hardy assure you that tho' I believe I shall lose the credit of some heavy purchases on the West Coast by your coming down that I shall be most happy to see you as there are many questions constantly arising which had I your advice on in a general way would be of much assistance to me. I do not understand what are the views of the Crown Lands Commissioner in Wellington, all his efforts appear to me to be to obtain Money for Land whether the Land be a Native reserve purchased or unpurchased. I am afraid if he continues in office much longer that he will cause several difficulties in which I shall be the victim. I have no doubt that there are many of these provincial croakers who think that I have a very easy time and amuse themselves writing complaints of me, but I trust that you will give me the opportunity of defending myself should any of these complaints come under your notice. I am rather disappointed at the results of all my labour on the West Coast at Manawatu in particular. I have however determined to complete the purchase of the Coast Block as soon as possible and as soon as the survey of the upper part is complete to again try to see what can be done with the old Hiriwanui, he is certainly the most obstinate old fellow I send Grindell there after Christmas, he writ es me but a very indifferent account of my prospects of a purchase there at present, entre nous. I do not place the most implicit faith in Mr. G. I think he talks too much and frequently gets out of temper without cause with the natives, old Nepier seems to be swinging to and fro between the Govt. and the King I think he is strongly inclined to the latter, but at the same time does not like to relinquish the loaves and fishes of the former. Since Mr. Strang's visit to Auckland and being allowed a Clerk he may I think date a new lease of his life, I often when in Wellington pay him a visit, have a gossip and a glass of Toddy and am always most kindly received. Remember me to Douglas and you may tell him that I have a whip for him, that is for the Pony that his Father is to give him and am my dear Sir

very truly yours,
Will N. Searancke
D. McLean Esqre.

Part of:
Inward letters - W N Searancke, Reference Number MS-Papers-0032-0565 (58 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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