Object #1013101 from MS-Papers-0032-0228

12 pages written 25 Nov 1869 by George Sisson Cooper to Sir Donald McLean

From: Inward letters - George Sisson Cooper, Reference Number MS-Papers-0032-0228 (108 digitised items). 105 letters written from Taranaki, Hawke's Bay & Wellington. Contains correspondence between McLean and Cooper with regard to the purchase of Maori land in Hawke's Bay and Wairarapa in particular, and various complaints and issues that arose from the purchases; also contains information and discussions about the spread of the Pai Marire and Ringatu religions (again, with a particular focus on Hawke's Bay and Wairarapa), and about general Maori affairs. Includes draft letters from McLean to Cooper; letters from George's wife Ellen C Cooper, 1863-1872, and from Sarah Cooper (undated).

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

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Page 1 of 12. View high-resolution image

English (ATL)

COPY. November 25th. 1869


My dear McLean,

I have not very much to say this mail, yet there are one or two things I must tell you. First of all, the subject most in my head (for I have been at it all night and all day) is Frazer's -deficiency''. I am sure you will share in the real pleasure which I felt on discovering that instead of being a debtor to the Crown to the amount of £1134,15/ as charged,

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English (ATL)

he turns out to owe just £7.1.3; Can you imagine anything more shameful than that a man should subjected to the aspersions that poor Frazer has had to suffer under, in such a case as this? It is true, certainly that £7199.19.9 has yet to be settled - that is the payments proved. But this, I think, can with a little trouble, be accomplished, all but perhaps £40; which I am afraid Percival has done him out of. So he may eventually have to pay £47 instead of £7, which is clearly the sum he really is deficient of.

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English (ATL)

Part of the sum charged against him consisted of an advance of £546, made not to him at all, but to Capt. W. Frazer, of 1st. Waikatos, late of Tauranga, but now I believe, a Gold Warden somewhere. This was entered against him by mistake in the Treasury; and now the Audit actually make a difficulty about relieving James Frazer, unless that William confesses that he (W) owes the £546;, though they don't pretend to say that it was ever given to J.P. I have performed one War Dance to the great astonishment of Knight's very dignified chief clerk, and will given

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English (ATL)

him another taste of it if that won't do; in which I shall have the hearty support of both Mr. Fox and Gisborne. Kahuri, Matu!

The Manawatu question is not quite settled yet. Stewart, the Surveyor, was sent back; and Wi Hapi writes insolent missives to say he and his tribe are ''noho tuturu ni Rangitkei'', I send you the papers for your information, that you may see the line he adopts. Buller is gone to see into the question of interrupting the Surveyor, and we shall no doubt soon hear the end of it.

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English (ATL)


It is a curious coincidence that Arehdeacon Hadfield and Alick McDonald should be up there, moving about among them, just at the time these things are going on. Featherston, in his opening speech, to the Council, threatened the pains and penalties of the Disturbed Districts Act, which acted like a hawk among a brood of chickens, and has terrified them all out of their wits.

I need not tell you anything about Topia's Meeting at Upper Wangaui, or

Page 6 of 12. View high-resolution image

English (ATL)

about Kell's expedition up the Waitotara, where he shot a Maori ''outlaw'', as he calls him; as Mr. Fox has sent you the original papers. Topia's Meeting is a great thing - if he is only sincere, but I confess I feel great doubts of these sudden and violent conversions - especially in the case of the Turoa family. Mr. Fox goes up, and takes some arms with him, to be given out or not, as may seem advisable when there. I think he will be pretty cautious, and

Page 7 of 12. View high-resolution image

English (ATL)

take care not to run his head into a trap. He will have Kemp to advise him, and no going near to disturb Kemp's judgment.

Kells' affair was ill-timed and rash, but I have no fear of any bad result, if we don't make too much of it ourselves.

The Provincial Council is strong in opposition; and it is quite possible that Featherston may not be able to get away in the Mail. There was to have been a lunch on Monday, but that has been put off. Featherston

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English (ATL)

sent down a Bill to prevent the Volunteers from getting their land in the Manawatu Block; which was thrown out on a Division, Halcombe alone voting for it, and the whole Council on the other side. I am afraid the Manawatu Block is destined to be swallowed up by a variety of birds of prey, and nothing left to put money in the Provincial Treasury. First of all there are the New Zealand Company's Land orders, a pretty formidable lot. Then the Small Farm

Page 9 of 12. View high-resolution image

English (ATL)

and other Land Jobbing Associations. Then Volunteers, about 800 at 30 acres apiece, all of which have to be satisfied with land, on which the Province has to pay 20 per cent on the value, to the Colonial Treasury, which will pretty considerably swamp the money they may get from any outsiders. The majority wish to stop Fetherston going - at least as Superintendent. They say - ''go if you like, but you must resign''. This he won't do, so there is on the whole a very

Page 10 of 12. View high-resolution image

English (ATL)

pretty kettle of fish.

The building of our new Offices that were to unite Native and Defence Departments under one roof, is stopped; but apartments are to be constructed for Defence over Bellamy's and the Smoking Room. They won't let Native offices into those sacred buildings, for fear of the smell of Maori and shark, etc. But they may, perhaps, find that the Aberiginal population occasionally

English (ATL)

COPY. November 25th. 1869


My dear McLean,

I have not very much to say this mail, yet there are one or two things I must tell you. First of all, the subject most in my head (for I have been at it all night and all day) is Frazer's -deficiency''. I am sure you will share in the real pleasure which I felt on discovering that instead of being a debtor to the Crown to the amount of £1134,15/ as charged, he turns out to owe just £7.1.3; Can you imagine anything more shameful than that a man should subjected to the aspersions that poor Frazer has had to suffer under, in such a case as this? It is true, certainly that £7199.19.9 has yet to be settled - that is the payments proved. But this, I think, can with a little trouble, be accomplished, all but perhaps £40; which I am afraid Percival has done him out of. So he may eventually have to pay £47 instead of £7, which is clearly the sum he really is deficient of. Part of the sum charged against him consisted of an advance of £546, made not to him at all, but to Capt. W. Frazer, of 1st. Waikatos, late of Tauranga, but now I believe, a Gold Warden somewhere. This was entered against him by mistake in the Treasury; and now the Audit actually make a difficulty about relieving James Frazer, unless that William confesses that he (W) owes the £546;, though they don't pretend to say that it was ever given to J.P. I have performed one War Dance to the great astonishment of Knight's very dignified chief clerk, and will given him another taste of it if that won't do; in which I shall have the hearty support of both Mr. Fox and Gisborne. Kahuri, Matu!

The Manawatu question is not quite settled yet. Stewart, the Surveyor, was sent back; and Wi Hapi writes insolent missives to say he and his tribe are ''noho tuturu ni Rangitkei'', I send you the papers for your information, that you may see the line he adopts. Buller is gone to see into the question of interrupting the Surveyor, and we shall no doubt soon hear the end of it.

It is a curious coincidence that Arehdeacon Hadfield and Alick McDonald should be up there, moving about among them, just at the time these things are going on. Featherston, in his opening speech, to the Council, threatened the pains and penalties of the Disturbed Districts Act, which acted like a hawk among a brood of chickens, and has terrified them all out of their wits.

I need not tell you anything about Topia's Meeting at Upper Wangaui, or about Kell's expedition up the Waitotara, where he shot a Maori ''outlaw'', as he calls him; as Mr. Fox has sent you the original papers. Topia's Meeting is a great thing - if he is only sincere, but I confess I feel great doubts of these sudden and violent conversions - especially in the case of the Turoa family. Mr. Fox goes up, and takes some arms with him, to be given out or not, as may seem advisable when there. I think he will be pretty cautious, and take care not to run his head into a trap. He will have Kemp to advise him, and no going near to disturb Kemp's judgment.

Kells' affair was ill-timed and rash, but I have no fear of any bad result, if we don't make too much of it ourselves.

The Provincial Council is strong in opposition; and it is quite possible that Featherston may not be able to get away in the Mail. There was to have been a lunch on Monday, but that has been put off. Featherston sent down a Bill to prevent the Volunteers from getting their land in the Manawatu Block; which was thrown out on a Division, Halcombe alone voting for it, and the whole Council on the other side. I am afraid the Manawatu Block is destined to be swallowed up by a variety of birds of prey, and nothing left to put money in the Provincial Treasury. First of all there are the New Zealand Company's Land orders, a pretty formidable lot. Then the Small Farm and other Land Jobbing Associations. Then Volunteers, about 800 at 30 acres apiece, all of which have to be satisfied with land, on which the Province has to pay 20 per cent on the value, to the Colonial Treasury, which will pretty considerably swamp the money they may get from any outsiders. The majority wish to stop Fetherston going - at least as Superintendent. They say - ''go if you like, but you must resign''. This he won't do, so there is on the whole a very pretty kettle of fish.

The building of our new Offices that were to unite Native and Defence Departments under one roof, is stopped; but apartments are to be constructed for Defence over Bellamy's and the Smoking Room. They won't let Native offices into those sacred buildings, for fear of the smell of Maori and shark, etc. But they may, perhaps, find that the Aberiginal population occasionally want access to Defence as well as Native Ministers; and keeping the establishments apart will make it simply impossible, as I found it last year, for me to manage both, during Session.

It is Mail hour, and as I have said all that occurred to me to say, I will conclude,
ever faithfully yours (Signed)
G.S. Cooper.
P.S. Glad to hear that Willamson is in again.

Part of:
Inward letters - George Sisson Cooper, Reference Number MS-Papers-0032-0228 (108 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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