The Purchase of Wellington
The Purchase of Wellington.
“The first deed of purchase, dated 27th September, 1839, defines the boundary of the land purchased from the natives which included considerably more than Wellington City and suburban area.page 18
Fig. 12—Bird's-eye View of Port Nicholson, New Zealand, drawn and lithographed by T. Allom, from Charts and Drawings made during Colonel Wakefield's survey in 1840, and the property of the N.Z. Coy. Reference numbers are: 1. Pito-one beach; 2. Heretaunga or Hutt river; 3. Nga-uranga; 4. Kaiwhara-whara; 5. Somes Island; 6. Lowry Bay; 7. Pipitea point; 8. Lambton Harbour and site of the Town of Wellington; 9. Oriental Bay; 10. Point Jerningham; 11. Point Halswell; 12. Ward Island: 13. Evans Bay; 14. Para Lake (Burnham Water, now Miramar Tennis Courts); 15. Karaka Bay and Seatoun; 16. Muritai; 17. Lyall Bay; 18. Breaker Bay; 19. Palmer Head; 20. Barrett's Reef; 21. Chaffer's Passage; 22. Pencarrow Head.
“The consideration given was: 100 red blankets, 100 muskets. 2 tierces of tobacco, 48 iron pots, 2 cases of soap, 15 following pieces, 21 kegs of gunpowder, 1 cask of ball cartridges, 1 keg of lead slabs, 100 cartouche boxes, 100 tomahawks, 40 pipe tomahawks, 1 case of pipes, 2 dozen spades, 50 steel axes, 1,200 fish-hooks. 12 bullet moulds, 12 dozen shirts, 20 jackets, 20 pairs of trousers, 60 red nightcaps, 300 yards of cotton duck, 200 yards of calico, 100 yards of check, 2 dozen pocket handkerchiefs, 2 dozen slates and 200 pencils, 10 dozen looking-glasses, 10 dozen pocket knives, 10 dozen pairs of scissors, 1 dozen pairs of shoes, 1 dozen umbrellas, 1 dozen hats, 2 pounds of beads, 100 yards of ribbon, 1 gross of jew's harps, 1 dozen razors, 10 dozen dressing combs, 6 dozen hoes, 2 suits of superfine clothes, 1 dozen shaving boxes and brushes, 2 dozen adzes and 1 dozen sticks of sealing wax.”
An article in the Journal of the Early Settlers Association, May, 1913 (Vol. 1, No. 2, p. 58), deals at length with the first purchase of the New Zealand Land Company (Whanga-nui-a-Tara>.* or Port Nicholson), and gives the signatures of the chiefs as follows:—Matangi, Te Puni, Puakawa, Te Kaeaea alias Taringa-kuri, Kariwa, Kawia, Tuarua, Wi Tako, Tingatoro, Tuati, Wakarudi, Emau, Atuawe Ra, Warihi, Te Wharepouri.
“Next morning” (the 30th), Wakefield continues, “we observed the natives gathering from all parts of the harbour. Canoes and parties on foot, glittering with their lately acquired red blankets and muskets, were all closing in upon the place of rendezvous. Fresh smokes rose every moment on shore as a new oven was prepared for the feast; and Wharepouri and the other chiefs who had slept on board, went on shore early to make the necessary preparations, accompanied by our carpenter, who was to superintend the erection of a small tree which the natives had procured for the purpose, as a flagstaff, close to the Pito-one Pa. In the afternoon, on a signal from the shore, we landed in our boats with all the cabin party, and all the sailors that could be spared, to take part in the rejoicings. We were joyfully received by the assemblage, which consisted of about three hundred men, women and children. Of these, two hundred were men, and had armed themselves with the hundred and twenty muskets they had received from us, spears, tomahawks, pointed sticks, stone and wooden clubs, etc. Even a dozen umbrellas figured in the ranks.”… .“Every one was dressed in some of the new clothes; their heads were neatly arranged, and ornamented with feathers of the albatross or huia; handsome mats hung in unison with the gay petticoats of the women and the new blankets of the warriors; the latter were bedizened with waistcoats and shirts, and belted with cartouche-boxes and shot-belts.”… “A universal spirit of hilarity prevailed among the excited multitude.”
“As we landed, Colonel Wakefield ordered the New Zealand flag to be hoisted at the staff, and the same was done at the main of the “Tory,” which saluted with twenty-one guns, to the great delight of the natives at the noise and smoke.”
“Wharepouri took his station at the head of one of the parties into which the fighting men were divided: “Dog's Ear” having marshalled the other at a little distance.page 20
“Wharepouri was dressed in a large hussar cloak belonging to my uncle, to which he had taken a fancy, and brandished a handsome greenstone mere. His party having seated themselves in ranks, he suddenly rose from the ground and leaped high into the air with a tremendous yell. He was instantly imitated by his party, who sprang out of their clothes as if by magic, and left them in bundles on the ground. They then joined in a measured guttural song recited by their chief, keeping exact time by leaping high at each louder intonation, brandishing their weapons with the right hand, and slapping the thigh with the left as they came heavily upon the ground.
“The war song warmed as it proceeded; though still in perfect unison, they yelled louder and louder, and leaped higher and higher, brandished their weapons more fiercely, and dropped with the smack on the thigh more heavily as they proceeded, till the final spring was accompanied by a concluding whoop which seemed to penetrate one's marrow. After this preparatory stimulant, the two parties ran down to the beach and took up positions facing each other at about two hundred yards distance. They then repeated the dance, and at its conclusion the two parties passed each other at full speed, firing their guns as they ran, and took up a fresh position nearer to each other.
“A small reinforcement was now brought up from Puakawa's village at the mouth of the river to one of the parties, and we were much surprised to see at the head of it Richard Davis, the missionary teacher, dressed in warlike costume, and his head bedecked with the huia feathers.”… “They now for a third time went through the Peruperu, or ‘war dance,’ but dispensed with the sham fighting, as the day was nearing its end.”
“A haka was now performed by about one hundred and fifty men and women. They seated themselves in ranks in one of the courtyards of the Pa, stripped to the waist. An old chieftainess, who moved along the ranks with regular steps brandishing an ornamental spear in time to her movements, now recited the first verse of a song in a monotonous dirge-like measure. This was joined in by the others, who also kept time by quivering their hands and arms, nodding their heads and bending their bodies in accordance with each emphasis and pause. These songs are often made impromptu on various subjects, but those selected for the present occasion were principally ancient legends. At the conclusion of the haka, we were served from the ‘umu’ or Maori oven, with the joints of a pig, which had been sacrificed for the occasion.”… “This disposition continued unabated during the three days more that we remained at this place.”
“Dr. Dieffenbach and Mr. Heaphy engaged some native guides one day to go and look for some birds called huia, which were said to abound in this part of the country.
“They crossed the mouth of the Heretaunga River and ascended a steep ridge of the eastern hills. Among the forests on the top they remained ensconced in the foliage while the natives attracted the birds by imitating the peculiar whistle from which it takes the name of huia. They shot only two or three, which had followed the decoy almost on to the barrels of their guns.”
The “Tory” left Port Nicholson for Port Underwood on the 4th November, 1839.
Fig. 14—Britannia (Pito-one) 1840, from a sketch drawn by Capt. W. Mein-Smith, R.A., taken from the Korokoro Hill. Tents and Houses are on the Beach, and Emigrant Ships near Somes Island.
Fig. 15—Te Puni's Pa. Pito-one. Showing Colonel Wakefield's Quarters and the Chapel. The bell used for calling the worshippers was presented by Bishop Selwyn, and sometimes was rung by him before the services. It is in the possession of Mrs. Hapi Love, O.B.E., a descendant of Te Puni.
After calling at several places the “Tory” set sail for Kaipara on the 16th December, 1839, and anchored in ten fathoms outside the entrance of that harbour on the 18th. The following morning Dr. Dorset, who was left in charge of affairs during the Colonel's absence up north, announced that the ship was aground, so the usual methods to get her off were taken, but in vain. Captain Chaffers and his crew exerted themselves unceasingly; five guns, three or four anchors and cables, a deck load of spare spars and several other heavy articles were cast over; some heavy mill stones and paving flags were hoisted from the hold and rolled overboard. One of them was carelessly sent through the best whale-boat, which lay at the gangway.
She was hove down on a sandbank at the first spring tide, and the necessary repairs proceeded with. Colonel Wakefield then proceeded overland to the Bay of Islands in order to charter a small vessel to take him to Port Hardy, to meet the first fleets of Emigrant ships.
In the meantime the barque “Cuba,” 273 tons, arrived on January 3rd, 1840 (Captain Newcombe). The passengers were:—Captain W. Mein Smith, R.A.; Messrs. R. D. Hanson, Carrington, R. Park, Stokes, and K. Bethune.
Wakefield in his narrative writes:— “About the middle of January, 1840, the “Guide,” originally a Calcutta pilot brig, of about 150 tons burden, and swarming with cockroaches, arrived, bringing letters from Colonel Wakefield to Dr. Dorset.
Instructions were given to charter the “Guide,” proceed to Taranaki and bring Barrett and Dr. Dieffenbach to Port Nicholson, and if they reached the latter place before the Colonel, they were to get the natives to build plenty of temporary huts in readiness for the emigrants.
On the 20th, just as it fell dark, they rounded Cape Terawhiti with a freshening breeze from the north-west. A fine moon, peeping every now and then through the driving scud, lighted them on their way, and by daylight on the 21st they were beating up within Port Nicholson close to Somes Island.
Some large vessels were at anchor between the island and the main, and white tents and new reed houses along the line of the beach at the foot of the Hutt Valley could be seen as they anchored north of Somes Island, close to a newly arrived emigrant ship. Two others, apparently discharged, also lay in the anchorage. “Landing opposite Pitoone,” states Jerningham Wakefield, “I was delighted to meet Colonel Wakefield, safe and well. He was accompanied by Captain Mein Smith of the Royal Artillery, to whom he introduced me as the Surveyor General of the New Zealand Land Company. We were also greeted by several other gentlemen, whose tents or huts were pitched in the neighbourhood.”
* The spelling of the names as corrected by Stowell are used. Vide Journal of Early Settlers, Vol. 1, p. 3.