Object #1011010 from MS-Papers-0032-0169
6 pages written 27 Dec 1872 by Sir George Ferguson Bowen in Dunedin City to Sir Donald McLean
From: Inward letters - Sir George and Lady Diamantina Bowen, Reference Number MS-Papers-0032-0169 (122 digitised items).
119 letters written from Auckland, Wanganui, Wellington, Melbourne, Dunedin, Taranaki, Mercer, May 1868-Aug 1874, and undated. Includes draft letters from McLean.
A transcription/translation of this document (by ATL) appears below.
Decr. 27, 1872
My dear Mr. McLean,
I refer to your herewith petitions from the Maori prisoners still in the gaol here; - also a report from the Sheriff (Mr. Watt). I supposed that the five political prisoners will be released when the amnesty is issued. I hope it will be issued before I leave the Colony. The case of Hemi te Hara (condemned for murder) is, of course, different. Every one speaks well of the conduct of the Maoris. They are so obediant that it is not thought necessary even to send an armed guard with them while at work in the Botanic Gardens more than a mile from the gaol. I myself saw them there working hard in different places and with only one policeman watching them -without even a stick in his hand! I thought of the story of the single Irish policeman who treatened to "surround" a mob if they did not become quiet!
Nothing could be more enthusiastic or in better taste - than our reception here by all classes. I shall be back at Wellington, I hope, about the 1st of February. I have received a letter from Lord Kimberley desiring me to proceed to Victoria in March, as Lord Canterbury will leave at the end of February. So I hope that arrangements will be made for the meeting of the Northern natives to take place not later than the 1st week in March.
I enclose a letter from Rapihana te Otaota, who is the man referred to in Manuhiri's last letter to me. Mr. Watt has made a translation of it for me. Will you let my reply be a good opportunity for writing about the Meeting, as Rapihana is in constant communication with the "King Natives"? I send a sketch of my reply, and request that you will fill it up and have it forwarded at once if you see no objection.
My time is so much limited that I am reluctantly forced to abandon the idea of taking Lady Bowen overland to the glaciers of Mount Cook etc. She is not strong enough to stand so rapid and fatiguing a journey, and will return to Wellington next month by one of the ordinary steamers. I will see as much as I can myselfin a rapid ride overland and will also be back at Wellington about the 1st of February, returning by one of the weekly steamers.
I would ask you to arrange that the "Luna" shall be at Wellington about the 20th of February to take us to the Manukau on our final departure from the "Empire City."
Vogel will have told you that I visited the Maori Kirk, saw Tairoa and all his people, and distributed the prizes at their school. All went off well.
Sir James Fergusson writes to me that he will be in New Zealand in May. I shall leave this Colony with deep regret, and I think my successor a most fortunate man. I congratulated the Otago people on his being a Scotchman.
I shall feel much obliged if you will send me
telegrams on the receipt of this, and frequently afterwards, keeping me informed as to the prospects of the Northern Meeting etc.
my dear Mr. McLean,
Yours very faithfully,
G. F. Bowen.
D. McLean, C. M. G.
P. S. I saw Vogel yesterday. He was still suffering much from gout.
Inward letters - Sir George and Lady Diamantina Bowen, Reference Number MS-Papers-0032-0169 (122 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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