May 31 1872
I brought my three weeks work to a close here today and leave tomorrow for Hawkes Bay by the "Napier". I feel I have not altogether given satisfaction in my duties to the European side for I have had owing to the very stringent wording of the Frauds Act to disallow certain sales in consequence of spirits to a small extent forming part of the consideration. The purchasers have been compelled to pay over again for the land. I confess I think the act would be more just in its operation were Commrs. enabled to expunge items for spirits from the a/cs instead of being compelled to disallow the transaction altogether. Except in this respect the act so far works well and has already in the Hawkes Bay and this District brought about a more legitimate course of dealing with Native Lands than previously existed. I find as well here as at Hawkes Bay that there is a strong feeling of dissatisfaction with the land laws attributable without doubt to the technical incidents and refinements of European tenure which the Natives do not understand and which they only learn by harsh experience. I do not mention the various methods by which a European can become possessed of Native lands held under English title against the will of the Natives as you are fully aware from your own observations. There seems to be a growing feeling here against
putting any more land thro' the Court; and Karaitiana when he was here the other day fostered the same feeling a good deal. Sic W. Maitin's Bill which you introduced last session would accord more with Native ideas than the present act. Kacaitiana held a meeting at Owheta on the Big River on his return from Auckland but did not say much beyond informing the people that if they had any grievances or wished any matter brought forward in Parliament they were to write to him as their member.
I regret I have not beenable to write you with reference to bringing your lands under the Land Transfer Act. I will however do so as soon as I arrive in Napier.
I am dear Sir,
The Honble Donald McLeanAuckland
Inward letters - Hanson Turton (jun), Reference Number MS-Papers-0032-0611 (38 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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