Object #1014853 from MS-Papers-0032-0004
From: Native Land Purchase Commissioner - Papers, Reference Number MS-Papers-0032-0004 (36 digitised items). Contains letters to and from McLean with regard to the business of purchasing of Maori land in Taranaki, Hawke's Bay, Wairarapa and elsewhere; also contains details of various purchases and related business
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Letter to Sir George Grey,
from Donald McLean,
dated 18th. August 1852.
18th. August 1852.
My dear Sir George,
I find that the messenger I was sending direct to Wellington for instructions respecting the Land Question at this place, has returned to-day from Wanganui; Major Durie having taken his packet to be forwarded by the Overland Mail.
I am afraid Your Excellency will feel rather surprised at my having made such a demand for money to pay for land; but I find, when negotiating with the natives, that we can make a much greater impression, if we can actually exhibit a sum for their acceptance. The knowledge of its being at
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hand, when discussing a sale, has sometimes a talismanic effect on their movements.
Mr. Cooper and I have had daily Meetings with the Puketapu, respecting the purchase of the land between the Mongoreka and the Bell Block. The numbers favouring the sale have increased within the last few weeks, from 20 to upwards of 100; and we expect further accessions. Katatori is at present the principal opponent to the sale; and should Your Excellency approve of the proposals respecting Reserves, and price notified in my letter of the 5th. inst. I have reason to hope this Block, subject to a few limited Reserves, can be acquired.
I must not, however, lead Your Excellency to expect that the purchase can be immediately effected. To encure peaceable occupation, it must be conducted with due regard to the interests of the opposing natives. But the question being now opened, the most influential claimants being favourable, leaves a fair field for
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bringing the matter in due course to a successful termination; and I need scarcely add that every effort shall be used by Mr. Cooper and myself to accelerate such a desirable object. The respite the Waitara natives have had for two years has moderated the opposition of some, and increased the influence of Ihaia, and Martiu, very considerably.
I am aware Your Excellency does not wish the Mokau to be purchased at present; but I thought it advisable, to prevent any disappointment on the part of the natives, to send a surveyor there, to ascertain what they really wish to sell; leaving the price, and date of purchase for Your Excellency's future consideration.
Mr. Flight is going on steadily. Mr. Cooper is very active, and well suited for his office. The only annoyance connected with
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the place, is the unfortunate land question, and even that is assuming a prospect of being remedied.
Mr. Flight tells me that between £20 and £30 have been subscribed to Mr. King's testimonial.
Mr. Wicksteed is expected to be returned, as the County Member, by a large majority. "The Taranaki Herald" is also under his direction.
The changes and improvements here are considerable. The only outcry among the settlers is, "Give us more land."
I have, etc., (Signed)
Sir George Grey.
Native Land Purchase Commissioner - Papers, Reference Number MS-Papers-0032-0004 (36 digitised items)
Series 7 Official papers, Reference Number Series 7 Official papers (3737 digitised items)
McLean Papers, Reference Number MS-Group-1551 (30238 digitised items)
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