July 28th. 1866.
My dear McLean,
I have just received your letter, and am much pleased with its contents, - more particularly with the fact that you have been on your legs. The first is always the most trying; when you get over it, all is smooth sailing.
I hope you will speak pretty strongly upon a good many points. There are many measures that require remedying.
I have been here since Wednesday last. I am sorry Col. Russell should think that I have any inclination to depart from instructions. I think I should have come overland, rather than incur the imputation of neglecting my duty, but the state of the weather was such that it would have been impossible; and I was very ill with influenza, which weakened me very much. In fact, I only got out of bed the day before the "St. Kilda" came in; and then I was anxious to get the wheat, etc., for the natives with me. I am told that the poor people, particularly Henry Poti's ae and Morgan's, have suffered a good deal from want of provisions. Captain Read has been very kind to them, and has sent
them supplies; but of course nothing like the quantity they require, so that yours will be very acceptable. I could only succeed in getting 40 bushels of wheat. The natives professed to have no more. It is a great pity the Government has not made the "St. Kilda" bring one or two cargoes of potatoes from the Chathams. That would have satisfied the requirements more cheaply, and perhaps more acceptably to the natives, than the other. Do urge upon Government, if it meets your own views, the immediate necessity of Confiscation, to a certain extent, on this Coast. It has been too long delayed, and the effect upon both Friendly and Hau Hau natives. is bad. The former are discouraged and provoked at what they consider our weakness and want of justice. The latter are becoming bounceable and insolent, by what appears to them our fear to take their land. There are 300 of them here at Tamihana's pa; who are in anything but a right mind. They brought Anaru Matete's daughter in the other day; and boasted that the father was soon to follow.
Paora Parau tells me that he was down as far as the beach the other day. The people at Tamihana's had the impudence to ask Capt. Read to get them 100 stand of arms, for which they promised to pay cash under the pretence of opposing Anaru, when he came; but
of course it was for a very different purpose. I am told that they are well supplied with ammunition.
The "St. Kilda" is returning from Napier this evening, to take away the remaining Volunteers. I hope they may not all be wanted back again.
Nothing can be more encouraging to Patera and the rest of them than the small number now left to protect the place.
I shall go up the Coast by your namesake, the "Donald McLean" in a day or two. A few cases are to be brought before me, which will have to be decided before I leave.
Mr. Lalley came up with me, and intends returning by the "Ahuriri". He is greatly pleased with all he has seen here.
I left the wife and bairns all well, - just recovered from influenza. I don't know yet how, I shall manage to get them up, but, - "sufficient for the day -" I must get some kind of a house ready at Waiapu as quickly as possible, as they are all anxious to join me. I think the Government should help me a little with it.
I must now say good-bye. Many thanks for thinking of writing to me.
Remember me to Gerard and others; and believe me, my dear McLean,
ever yours truly