Object #1011856 from MS-Papers-0032-0282

6 pages written 20 Jul 1865 by Lieutenant-Colonel James Fraser

From: Inward letters - James Fraser, Reference Number MS-Papers-0032-0282 (39 digitised items). 38 letters written from Hawke's Bay, Bay of Plenty and East Coast, 1865-1870. Includes letter addressed to Captain Rhodes, 1865

A transcription/translation of this document (by ATL) appears below.

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Page 2 of 6. View high-resolution image

English (ATL)

has been so bad for the last week, that with the reception of yesterday and the day before we have been obliged to keep quiet. On Sunday night last we were attacked by the "Hauhaus" in some force but on our men firing on them they retreated into the scrub, and we saw no more of them. Monday passed over quietly, but on Tuesday the enemy were seen driving off Morgan's sheep, upon which I sent out a skirmishing party under Gascogne and Tuke, Biggs and I remaining with the reseriv. The rebels quickly dropped the sheep and took to the scrub, got reinforced

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English (ATL)

from their pah, and blazed away at us like one o'clock. But we were too quick for them, managing to kill at least half a dozen of them, two of our men only being wounded. both through the leg severely, not a friendly native was hit. Our people evidently thought it quite a victory, for they danced the war dance both that night and the next morning. Scarcely half an hour after they had finished the War dance, we heard a rumor that the enemy were crossing the river and that the scous were running back on my heading and finally going myself to see if it were true, I saw a large

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English (ATL)

body of natives standing in an open, evidently consulting as to what they should do. I was pretty sure there were Hau Haus but Morgan through some mistake aid no. We were soon undeceived on that point however, as they opened a heavy fire upon us which lasted from the 10/30 a.m. to 4.30 p.m. and which you probably heard from the Eclipse. We have peppered them well however and the number of killed must be very great, one man who for a long time seemed to lead a charmed life among the bullets, I shot myself

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English (ATL)

with a rifle - We had one friendly native killed, one wounded, one European severely. The friendly natives estimate the number of killed among the rebels to be upward of a dozen at least besides wounded, my own impression is, there were many more. We are now anxiously waiting for more ammunition. To go into them again, and carry the war into their own territories again, and carry the war into their own territores. We are very hard pressed for ammunition and some should be landed at all risks here. I have had

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English (ATL)

every assistance given me by Mr. Deighton and the officers with me. Mr. Biggs only fault is too much plack, a fault which Gascogne also shares. Mr. Tuke is cool and steady and would make a reliable officer - My men work well, and are as jolly as they can be, like the life, and fight boldly. All we want is ammunition.


Yours very respectfully,
James Fraser.

English (ATL)

Waiapu Pa,
20 July 1865


My dear Sir,

As I have no doubt that you will be anxious to know how things are going on here, I send you this short account of our doings in the form of a private letter, as one can always tell things better in that way than officially. To begin then, we had a very unpleasant march up from Awanui to Waiapu, the distance about 4 miles not 1/2 as we were told, and the road rough and slippery. When we got to the pah which is the other side of a river it was about 10 P.M. its having taken us all that time to cross. Had the Hau Haus chosen our march could have been interrupted and we must have lost very many men the weather as you know has been so bad for the last week, that with the reception of yesterday and the day before we have been obliged to keep quiet. On Sunday night last we were attacked by the "Hauhaus" in some force but on our men firing on them they retreated into the scrub, and we saw no more of them. Monday passed over quietly, but on Tuesday the enemy were seen driving off Morgan's sheep, upon which I sent out a skirmishing party under Gascogne and Tuke, Biggs and I remaining with the reseriv. The rebels quickly dropped the sheep and took to the scrub, got reinforced from their pah, and blazed away at us like one o'clock. But we were too quick for them, managing to kill at least half a dozen of them, two of our men only being wounded. both through the leg severely, not a friendly native was hit. Our people evidently thought it quite a victory, for they danced the war dance both that night and the next morning. Scarcely half an hour after they had finished the War dance, we heard a rumor that the enemy were crossing the river and that the scous were running back on my heading and finally going myself to see if it were true, I saw a large body of natives standing in an open, evidently consulting as to what they should do. I was pretty sure there were Hau Haus but Morgan through some mistake aid no. We were soon undeceived on that point however, as they opened a heavy fire upon us which lasted from the 10/30 a.m. to 4.30 p.m. and which you probably heard from the Eclipse. We have peppered them well however and the number of killed must be very great, one man who for a long time seemed to lead a charmed life among the bullets, I shot myself with a rifle - We had one friendly native killed, one wounded, one European severely. The friendly natives estimate the number of killed among the rebels to be upward of a dozen at least besides wounded, my own impression is, there were many more. We are now anxiously waiting for more ammunition. To go into them again, and carry the war into their own territories again, and carry the war into their own territores. We are very hard pressed for ammunition and some should be landed at all risks here. I have had every assistance given me by Mr. Deighton and the officers with me. Mr. Biggs only fault is too much plack, a fault which Gascogne also shares. Mr. Tuke is cool and steady and would make a reliable officer - My men work well, and are as jolly as they can be, like the life, and fight boldly. All we want is ammunition.


Yours very respectfully,
James Fraser.

Part of:
Inward letters - James Fraser, Reference Number MS-Papers-0032-0282 (39 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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