Object #1009779 from MS-Papers-0032-0314
9 pages written 16 Feb 1856 by Henry Halse to Sir Donald McLean
From: Inward letters - Henry Halse, Reference Number MS-Papers-0032-0314 (32 digitised items).
33 letters written from New Plymouth. Includes copy of letter in Maori from Hakopa [?], Taumata Pa, 1856
A transcription/translation of this document (by ATL) appears below.
Feb. 16, 1856
My dear Sir,
I received a case and packet by the "Zingari" on her return from the South containing a number of the Pilgrim's Progress translated into Maori but as the work is so well got up and must have nost a considerable sum I have not circulated it amongst our natives and shall be glad to receive instructions. All is quiet here. Mahan called yesterday to say he intended to visit the Ngatiruanuis with the view of making peace ater which he will assist in settling the ill feeling at present existing agst W. Kingi of Waitara. Whether he will succeed is quite another matter, still the line he appears to have marked out for himself is highly creditable and may open up the path to a little land in the Waiangana district.
No less than a dozen native letters were received by yesterday's o.m. for the Waitara, Onaero and Mimi supposed to have come from the Chatham Islands.
The "Zingari" arrived yesty from Manukao and after landing about 30 men of the 65th and a few passengers left for Nelson.
All was quiet in Auckland - for the murder of the native woman had been hanged.
Another robbery had been committed upon an inoffensive European by some bad natives, who tied a child to a bed post and then fired the house having first removed a considerable amount of property. The poor child was rescued by mere chance. This report is brought by messengers
(I have not yet seen the papers) who say the general impression is that the Governor is not disposed to pass it over. The chief to whom the thieves belong asked for £60 before he would give them up. Our natives are going almost mad for spirits and there is scarcely a pa without a public house. Poharama told me that a Huirangi native I think his name was Hemi Ranara killed himself by excessive drinking a short time since. Many other natives I am afraid are drinking very hard and numbers of them will be carried off. Talking is useless and nothing will stop their taste for drink. Any day may produce trouble amongst them because their women drink gin almost as freely as fish drink water and then give effect to their natural desires.
The fault is in the law which imposes a fine of £50 for selling a single bottle of spirits and £10 for any quantity over two gallons. The consequence is that traders wont ell a single bottle but readily sell in quantity by tacking on the amount of the fine to secure themselves against the law, at the same time making large profits.
I apologise for these hastily written lines and you know it is sometimes unavoidable.
Hoping you are well.
To: McLean Esq.
Inward letters - Henry Halse, Reference Number MS-Papers-0032-0314 (32 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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