Object #1011405 from MS-Papers-0032-0817
From: Inward family correspondence - Archibald John McLean (brother), Reference Number MS-Papers-0032-0817 (65 digitised items). Letters written on board ship or from various ports, 1847-1858 prior to his arrival in New Zealand in mid-1858. From then on the letters are almost all written from Maraekakaho about station matters.
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22 August 1862
My dear Donald
Your [letter] of the 6th inst came to hand last week and I can assure you it afforded us great pleasure to find you were well for as the 'Queen' did not call here we were kept in great suspence about you thinking you were coming by here fearing something had happened as the weather was very ruff so that your letters per 'Stormbird' allayed all our fears as to your welfare. I am sorry to say that Catherine is still very poorly but I hope and trust she may soon recover. Douglas & all the rest are quite well as far as health is concerned but kept in sad suspence with Aleck's shameful carrear. Ever since you left I do not believe he was two days sober since. That is as bad as need be but I much fear that he will dupe you if he has not done so already and I now for the last time send you this caution for all that I have said to you it appears that you cannot believe the unfortunate truth till it may be two late. Unfortunate because we should have to doubt in a brother in the way we have to doubt in him. His transactions may answer you when told you with sophestry and cunning and made believe things that never had any foundation mearley for to serve some selfish low intrigue that may make a poor man of you yet without you come down imidiately for from what I can see and what he has said many a time he means means nothing honest or straight forward either towards you or me. As for me he has showed all proofs of his dislike for no other reason but because I cannot enter into any of his low ways and he thinks I am a spy on him and his conduct. God knows I am not that and I have been sadley used for my good brotherly intentions towards him. This last transaction with Nairn has completely oppened my eyes to his cunning and selfish disposition. Nairn came here
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several times offering the sheep. I then told him that it was better to buy them and as he commenced the matter to finish it and that those sheep would be a beginning for him and me and that when bought I considered the half of them mine as well as the half of the land, that is £100 share of the land which would be 1/4 of what Nairn had. Of course he said that would be the case both to myself and wife and confided with me as to the bargain and so forth and put me quite of[f] my gard, altho former transaction ought to oppened my eyes I felt certain that he never would be so depraved as cheat me so I left the whole matter in his hand altho Nairn offered me the sheep and I could have bought them through the bank the same way till you should honour the bills but I told Nairn one of us was quite enough to make the bargain but no sooner than he got somewhat sober than I found his tone and manner quite different and when the natives were assembled up here two weeks ago I could find he wanted neigher you nore I to have notheing to do with the land & that I saw that he had Hamlin quite in the school of secrecy and no doubt will have the whole transaction made out in his own name. If you do not come down at once he will play you some trick. You will ever regratt for yesterday he went in to see my poor wife and her suspitions were raised that things were not all right from what he told me the night before. I said Donald is going to meet the bill and of course has written you to that effect. He put on a most featish grin and said he wanted no Donald to meet his bills. Then said that was like all the rest of his movements something
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underhand again. He made no reply but appeared dogged and put out. Then I could see that their was some deep layed scheme so I sayed nothing further. I afterwards found that my wife had asked him point blank and his answer was that he never intended neigher me nore you to have anything to do with those sheep and that he had sold 1000 ewes for a good price to the new banker and that he was to leave them on thirds on terms for 6 years with him. Of course to make up the 1000 he will have to gave 45 of yours then my husband nor Donald are to have no interest in them. Then you have deceived both your brothers and me and what will your brother in Auckland think after causing Archy to write him to provide the money to meet the bills which he has made provision for. It appears he made no reply but was perfectly condemned. He is the means of great unhappness to us all here for we cannot depent on a word he says. Nairn had a good warrie put up their and he has had all hands down there for the last month getting it in order so that does not look well. I have Warren here with me always at work but I do not intend to do much or interfear when I am done with the fencing till you come down. He sold Rich I believe 150 wethers for 18/. Hamlin I believe 25. He also sold Blutcher to some friend of Gill's for £32. I wanted to pay Condie off or Begg but my answer was that he wanted the money so I dare say the publick will have a large share of it and Rich got 5 steers as well
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but I do not no the prices. He also has altered his mind about Condie and says he got another run for him. He will have some low intrigue their also. He told his sister he is going to stay at the Morie run altogether that will be handy to carry on all his unfortunate habbits. I now trust you will see the necessity of coming here.
And believe me to be your affectionate brother
Archibald John McLean
PS. It will be two late for the larches if they do not come before the middle of next month.
Inward family correspondence - Archibald John McLean (brother), Reference Number MS-Papers-0032-0817 (65 digitised items)
Series 9 Inwards family letters, Reference Number Series 9 Inwards family letters (1204 digitised items)
McLean Papers, Reference Number MS-Group-1551 (30238 digitised items)
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