The Rev. James Stack to the Hon. the Colonial Secretary.
Sir,—Church Missionary Station, Tauranga, 23rd May 1840.
In the absence of the Rev. A. N. Brown, I have, agreeably to Major Bunbury's directions, copied the Treaty of Waitangi, and I have now the honour to forward you the original by the "Aquila" cutter, the first opportunity since Major Bunbury left Tauranga.
Two who are considered "high chiefs "have refused to sign the Treaty. Their minds have been disturbed by some evil-minded person trying to prejudice them against Government. They may possibly sign the copy I have taken by-and-by. Major Bunbury told me signatures on the copy would be as good as those on the original document you sent. As Major Bunbury was hindered, in consequence of war between the tribes, from visiting Rotorua, I sent a copy of the treaty to Rotorua to-day to Messrs. Chapman and Morgan, to use their influence to get the signatures of the chiefs. An unexpected opportunity occurring yesterday by the arrival of the schooner "Mercury," with James Fedarb on board as supercargo, I prepared a copy of the Treaty, which I gave in charge to him, with letters to our Native teachers at Opotiki and Te Kaha to do what they could in obtaining signatures of chiefs in that quarter.
Either the Rev. A. N. Brown or myself would feel most happy by personal visitation amongst all the tribes in the Bay of Plenty to forward the views of Her Majesty's Government were it just now practicable, but unfortunately it is not. Mr. Brown being on a missionary visit in an opposite direction, of necessity one of us must remain at home to take charge of the station.
I have distributed the eight blankets left by Major Bunbury to those chiefs who he directed should have them. I have added four others out of our Society's store, Several more blankets may yet be wanting if Tupaia and his friends should sign.
I beg to apologize for the very soiled state of the Treaty, but the Native habits are so filthy it could hardly be avoided.
All the names marked√ in red ink are either head chiefs or sons of deceased chiefs of rank. Nuka and Tau are the two greatest chiefs who have signed the treaty in Tauranga as yet.
I have, &c.,
James Stack.Willough by Shortland, Esq., Acting Colonial Secretary,
Kororareka, Bay of Islands