Object #1016636 from MS-Papers-0032-0485
From: Inward letters - J D Ormond, Reference Number MS-Papers-0032-0485 (75 digitised items). 72 letters written from Auckland and Napier, 1871-1872
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January 15th, 1871.
My dear McLean,
I must have my letter ready for the Lord Ashley as she comes and is off again at once. I received your letters by the Taranaki and am satisfied you have plenty on your hands just now. The state of things at Waikato is very much what I expected, and I fear they will have a row whether we like it or not. If you can succeed in separating Ngatimaniapoto or even a section of them from the Waikatos it will be a great thing - From what I learn through Taupo Rewi is thoroughly in with the King party, and as active in promoting mischief as Manuhiri himself - Hamaki a Ngatiraukawa connected with the Taupo people and who travels to and fro told Poihipi Waikato were eager
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for fighting but wished us to begin, but that if we did not, then they would kill some more people and force us to - This seems very like what they are doing and the last part of Haurakis statement may be carried out at any time. This man is expected again at Taupo tonight and I shall hear at once what news he brings. I telegraphed you the threat of Rewi's about the Road and have heard no more of it. They may carry it out but I think will scarcely leave Waikato for that purpose just now. Moreover the people engaged on the road work near the Niho o te kiore are Ngatiraukawa or connected with them and Waikato is unlikely to injure them. The only section of disaffected Natives among our people in that line of country is Ngatitahu there is no doubt they are at the bottom of all the attempts to stop the road and other mischief, and they live at Orakeikorako on the road to Rotorua - On enquiry I find they have
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arms and ammunition belonging to the Govt. Now if there is any trouble there is not the slightest doubt, they will be used against us, would it do to take them away - It could be done easily enough as the party is small in number - let me know what you think - Another question that wants deciding is what is to be done if our Natives are molested and forced off their work - they are on their own land and declare they will not leave, this is said by all of them, by Tahoruangi Ngatitama, and of course of Poihipi and Hohepa Tawamutu, I shd. like to know your wishes on this so that I may act accordingly - Up to now I have told our people to go stdily on with their work take no notice of the threats and avoid inciting any action by the other side - It is clear however now, that at any moment they may have to act one way or the other, and it is desirable
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I should have your views as soon as possible. From letters from Tokano I hear that Rewi had sent messengers there telling the people to withdraw from communication with us and naming Moerangi as a place we were not to pass to - I have written to Pourini (Hore Tauteka's man), Heu Heu, Marino and the others telling them Hare was on his way to join them and telling them to keep us informed of all they hear - this they have promised to do - There is a great deal of excitement at Taupo and they evidently believe fighting is to be. In case of your being forced to War the great thing is to have all ready to pour an overwhelming force on the enemy - I have no knowledge what strength you have available but fear not much you can rely on at Waikato - Take my advice on one point do not defend on a European force alone - we saw enough at Omaranui to warn us to the value of untrained and untried Europeans. But I suppose from the fewer Waikatos and the Raglan
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Natives you could get a fair force together. From the Taupo side 500 men could be got together at short notice to move on Waikato from this side I should make that force up as follows - Constabulary about 100 - leaving near the same number to hold Taupo - Taupo Natives about 150 and the other 250 Arawa and Urewera - this would leave plenty of Taupo Natives and plenty of Arawa to hold their own country - In case you require such a force I would guarrantee to start it in a week and would go up to Taupo for the purpose - It is just as well to discuss these matters beforehand and I should expect you to depend upon me for collecting the force and directing from this side in case the necessity arises - Whenuanui and Paerau beg to be allowed to shew their sincerity by going up Waikato if there is war leaving their women and children here as evidence of their loyalty. They might be of use to lead the main portion of the Tribe now in the Bay of Plenty. I am sending you Ropata's official which tells
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you about the little pay difficulty with Ngatiporau Porter wrote me it was settled all right and about 180 men would go - He also said Ropata was more sanguine than usual about dropping on Te Kooti at Te Wera or somewhere in that neighbourhood and as nothing was known of the expedition until very lately it is possible he may drop across him - Porter says Ropata thinks more of hunting Te Kooti than collecting the Urewera - The expedition will report on arrival at Ruatahuna - Another party of Hau Haus came in the other day to Wairoa from Waikaremoana most of them Wairo a Natives and a good many women and children. The Elections here are all right I have asked J. Rhodes to propose you and J. Begg to second you - the little agitation that was getting up in consequence of R.M. Rochfort has subsided since I told them he was to be otherwise provided for - Gisborne must not forget it for the man is really an idiot and quite unfit for his place - Care must be taken about his successor - I dont know
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where to get a suitable man - The people here are very anxious to have the New Land Transfer Act brought into force and if a good man could be got for R.M. - He might also be Advisory Counsel to the Registrar and so comply with the Act without further expense. This would be a great boon to the place and I am urging it on Gisborne you might assist by writing him about it - The two offices together would justify a salary sufficient for a good man. There is a man Allen Barrister in Wellington who wd.
do, but I suppose he wd. scarcely take it - Perhaps Ferard would but Allen is the best man, as he is able, and at the same time courteous, and not quarrelsome - We have had a wonderful season, last week very heavy rains with floods in all the rivers - MrsOrmond and the children are at Wallingford I bring them down when I go up from the Nomination which is at Waipawa on the 26th of this month.
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I wrote so far this afternoon and since then have recd. Telegrams from Taupo to the effect that Ngatiraukawa have joined our people and declared against the Kings work. I need not enlarge on this as I will telegraph particulars tomorrow - Ngatiraukawa vote for employment on the road works which I shall arrange at once - If we can only get that Tribe to work properly with us we will soon have the Telegraph and Road through to Cambridge through their country by way of Patetere - I take this friendly action of Ngatiraukawa to remove any fear of hostile action at Taupo - The road question cannot now be used by Waikato which I beganto fear it might - The English Telegrams have just come to hand and bad is the news they give - War seems certain and also it appears as if it would be general - As Settlers we shall all suffer by it and it will ruin a great many - I should also fear it must operate against the success of the Financial scheme as we shall be forgotten altogether in the excitement of a frightful European War - Banigan is here he returned from Taupo to-night - he telegraphed me yesterday he was going to send some men from Taupo to Waikato. I desired him to communicate with you first, as I consider if you have difficulty you wd. rather use the Constabulary as part of the force to move from this side agaisnt Waikato. Taupo ought not to be weakened for any other purpose just now. Good night.
J. D. Ormond.
Inward letters - J D Ormond, Reference Number MS-Papers-0032-0485 (75 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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