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Land purchases, Middle Island : in continuation of paper G. 6, 1874, presented 29th July, 1874 : presented to both Houses of the General Assembly by command of His Excellency

F.—Kemp's Purchase

[i roto i te reo Māori]

F.—Kemp's Purchase.

The Ngaitahu or Kemp's deed, on which this purchase is based, was executed at Akaroa on the 12th June, 1848, and comprises all the tract of country bounded towards the North by a line drawn from Kaiapoi on the east to Cape Foulwind on the west; and on the East and West by the ocean; and on the South by a line drawn from the Nuggets beyond the Molyneux on the East to Milford Haven on the West Coast, exclusive of Banks Peninsula, supposed then to have been sold to the French, and a block of 400,000 acres in the Province of Otago, purchased in 1844 for the New Edinburgh settlement.

The aggregate area of the block included within the above-named boundaries exceeds 20,000,000 acres. The price paid was £2,000, and land to the extent of 6,359 acres was set apart for the Natives shortly after the sale.

In satisfaction of the conditions of the deed, "that the Governor should set apart other reserves when the land was surveyed," the Native Land Court in 1868, while engaged in investigating the claims of the Natives to reserves within the purchase, ordered that, in addition to the lands originally reserved, other lands should be set apart for the Natives in fulfilment of that engagement; and that the reservations under the phrase "Mahinga kai"—food-producing places—should also be observed. In compliance with the award of the Court, land to the extent of 4,793 acres 2 roods and 24 perches was accordingly set apart, in final extinguishment of all claims.

Besides the reserves originally made, and those made by the Native Land Court, the General and Provincial Governments had set apart, at various times for the Natives, land to the extent of 1,174 acres 2 roods and 16 perches, in augmentation of the quantity held by them. These quantities, together with 5,937 acres 1 rood and 16 perches, reserved, in 1860, on the West Coast for the benefit of the resident Natives, makes a total of 18,264 acres 2 roods and 16 perches set apart for Native purposes within the boundaries of Kemp's purchase.

In addition to the reserves to be made for the Natives, Mr. Mantell, the officer who was charged with the completion of the purchase, was instructed by Lieut.-Governor Eyre to inform the sellers that the purchase money was not the only or principal consideration for the cession of their land; but schools would be established for the instruction of themselves and their children, as well as hospitals for the treatment of their sick, besides officers who would be appointed to watch over their interests.

The only written record of these promises is to be found in the correspondence between Mr. Mantell and the Secretary of State, in 1856, in which he states "That by promise of more valuable recompense in schools, in hospitals for their sick, and in constant solicitude for their welfare and general protection on the part of the Imperial Government, he procured the cession of large tracts of country for small cash payments."

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A glance at the map accompanying this report will show that the territory included in Kemp's purchase includes over two-thirds of the whole area acquired from the Natives in the North and Stewart's Island, the total quantity ceded being 37,774,160 acres, minus the land reserved for the Natives and 51,000 acres excepted from sale, exclusive of D'Urville Island and Ruapuke; and the aggregate amount paid was ?27,417 15s., out of which only £2,000 was given for the acquisition of the aforesaid territory.