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An Epitome of Official Documents Relative to Native Affairs and Land Purchases in the North Island of New Zealand

No. 94. — Copy of a Despatch from Governor Sir George Grey, K.C.B., to the Right Hon. Edward Cardwell

No. 94.
Copy of a Despatch from Governor Sir George Grey, K.C.B., to the Right Hon. Edward Cardwell


Government House, Wellington, 4th January, 1866.

In my Despatch No. 3, of the 5th January, 1865, I transmitted a petition to Her Most Gracious Majesty from the Provincial Council of the Province of Auckland, praying that in the northern portion of the Northern Island of New Zealand such a Government shall be constituted as would enable Her Majesty's Imperial Government to exercise such a control over Native affairs, until a cordial good feeling between the races should have been restored, as would enable it to insure the, fulfilment of the treaty obligations undertaken by Her Majesty, and promote the good government of Her Majesty's subjects, both Native and European.

  • 2. In the same despatch I stated that I would, at a future date, report on that petition; but, in the meantime, I thought it right to say that I thought that unless some such arrangement as that proposed in the petition was carried out it would be difficult to bring to a satisfactory termination the difficulties prevailing in that province.
  • 3. In my Despatch No. 26, of the 7th February, I informed you that my Responsible Advisers had asked me to reserve my report on the petition until I had first received remarks which they wished to make upon it.
  • 4. Subsequently I found that the matter had become one which had excited very strong political feelings, and that Her Majesty's Government and my Responsible Advisers had adopted views opposite to those which I held on the subject. I therefore felt it my duty to refrain from doing anything which might tend to embarrass either Her Majesty's Government or the Colonial Government, and I did not forward the report which I had proposed to make.
  • 5. In your Despatch No. 50, of the 26th of July last, you informed me that you inferred from not receiving that report that I had changed my opinion and concurred in the views of my then Responsible Advisers.
  • 6. I think it right therefore to state that nothing which has yet taken place has led me to alter the opinion which I expressed in my Despatch No. 3, of the 5th January, 1865.
  • 7. The opinion I hold is based upon the necessity of strong, instantly acting, and entirely impartial government, in a case in which an European race and a powerful and jealous semi-barbarous race are mingling together. A country so circumstanced requires more government than a country in which an ordinary state of things prevails. I think that with such a government the happiness and peace of both races in the Province of Auckland might be shortly insured, and that the present anomalous state of things would soon cease to exist there. I fear that, without some such arrangement as is proposed is carried out, a long time of difficulty and trial lies before the northern part of this Island, which I should naturally regret to see it subjected to, because I believe it to be unnecessary. A few years since I thought the various questions outstanding between the two races would have been adjusted much more speedily than has been the case. I have, &c.,

The Right Hon. Edward Cardwell, M.P.

I have, &c.,

G. Grey.