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The New Zealand Railways Magazine, Volume 9, Issue 2 (May 1, 1934.)

Domett's New Zealand Career

Domett's New Zealand Career.

To give in brief compass Domett's colonial life, he emigrated to Nelson in 1842 with some of the first settlers, and became a settler there, but speedily found himself drawn into the field of local letters. He wrote descriptions of farming and bush experiences for the Nelson “Examiner,” and presently was invited to take over the editorial side, and his writings immediately began to attract attention beyond the bounds of the young town. Sir George Grey, in his first governorship, soon page 18 came to appreciate Domett's gifts. He called him to the Legislative Council, and he appointed him Colonial Secretary of the southern part of the North Island and the whole of the South Island. In 1851 Domett was further appointed Civil Secretary of New Zealand. He held these offices conjointly until after the introduction of the new Constitution, in 1853. He then held the offices of Magistrate and Commissioner of Crown Lands in Hawke's Bay, where he had virtually the whole official management of the province. In 1855 he returned to Nelson, and was elected to the Provincial Council, and later sat in the General Assembly as member for Nelson. He held office also as Commissioner of Crown Lands in Nelson. On the resignation of the Fox Cabinet, in 1862, Sir George Grey, lately back from South Africa for his second term as Governor, asked Mr. Domett to form a Ministry. Domett did so, and was in office for about a year. On resigning, he was appointed Secretary for Crown Lands, and at the same time he sat in the Legislative Council. In fact, for a number of years, until he left for England, he occupied a dual position, a Civil Servant and a member of the Legislature.