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The Pamphlet Collection of Sir Robert Stout: Volume 10

Address to the Governor

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Address to the Governor,

To his Excellency Sir George Grey, K.C.B., Governor of New Zealand.

Sir,—The unhappy war which is now raging in New Zealand between the Maories and their English rulers has excited the most deep and painful interest in this country. It was generally hoped that the contest which recently took place in the province of Taranaki would have been the last of those painful collisions which have proved as inimical to the best interests of the colony as they have been disastrous to the native race. This hope was confirmed by the spirit with which your Excellency entered upon the duties of your high office, and especially by the persevering efforts you made to establish a system of self-government in the native districts. We cannot express to you with what profound regret we have witnessed the failure of those wise and beneficent measures, and how deeply we sympathize with you in the peculiarly trying position in which you are now placed.

The justice which has ever been the great characteristic of your Excellency's administration of native affairs is a pledge to the world that the war which is now being waged will be limited to the one object of restoring British supre-macy in the disturbed districts, and of achieving an honourable and, if possible, a lasting peace. Occupying as you do a position at once so difficult and so responsible, we would not venture to offer any suggestions of our own, did we not feel that Englishmen, even at so great a distance, ought not to regard the momentous events now transpiring in New Zealand with indifference or even with silence.

We would therefore express our earnest hope that your Excellency will avail yourself of the first favourable opportunity which may present itself of endea-vouring to terminate the war by negotiation, and especially that you will listen to any overtures of peace which any of the natives who have taken up arms may make. This course will, we are sure, so commend itself to your sense of humanity and Christian feeling that we should scarcely presume to urge it upon your consideration, did we not feel that your hands might be strengthened by this expression of our opinion—an opinion which we believe to be shared by the great body of the British people.

We have, however, been alarmed by the pertinacity with which in some quarters it has been proposed to confiscate the lands of all contumacious and rebellious natives. As has been truly observed, such a policy as this would shut the door to any possible settlement of the difficulty, except by the sword; in other words, it would lead to the extermination of a people who value their property in the soil even more than their existence, and who, despite their faults, are worthy of a better fate. We can conceive of no surer means of adding fuel to the flame of war—of extending the area of disaffection—and of making the natives fight with the madness of despair, than a policy of confiscation. It could not fail to produce in New Zealand the same bitter fruits of which it has yielded so plentiful a harvest in other countries where the strife of races has been perpetuated through successive generations, and that, too, with a relentlessness and a cruelty which have made mankind blush for the species.

We therefore pray, that in the hour of victory your Excellency will temper page 23 justice with mercy, and give to the world another bright example of forbearance and magnanimity. By such means, and such means only, may we hope to see the Maori race saved from extinction, and the dominion of our beloved Queen firmly established over every portion of the islands of New Zealand.

With great respect, we have the honour to be, Sir, Your Excellency's faithful servants, (Signed)



Ebury, P.C.

, Moor Park, Rickmansworth;

Walter C. Trevelyan

, Bart;

John Hesketh Lethbridge

, Bart;

Wilfrid Lawson

, Bart;

S. Gurney

, M.P.;

W. E. Forster

, M-P.;

Thomas Barnes

, M.P.;

Henry Pease

, M.P.;

Thomas Bazley

, M.P.;

William Williams

, M.P.;

P. A. Taylor

, M.P.;

Edward Baines

, M.P.;

E. A. Leatham

, M.P.;

John Brady

, M.P.;

Samuel Morley


Thomas Fowell Buxton


T. Perronnet Thompson

, Lieutenant-General;

Edward Miall


R. N. Fowler

, Treasurer of the Aborigines' Protection Society;

Samuel Lucas


Thomas Guthrie

, D.D., Edinburgh;

Thomas Binney


Charles J. Hadfield

, Colonel;

William Howitt


Henry Salwey

, Colonel;

J. E. Cairnes

, Professor of Jurisprudence, &c. Queen's University, Ireland;

F. W. Newman

, late Professor at University College, London;

Newman Hall

, L.L.B.;

J. Humffreys Parry

, Serjeant-at-Law;

Samuel Stott

, Mayor of Rochdale;

Leone Levi

, Professor of Commerce and Commercial Law, King's College, London;

Charles Sturge


Henry Christy


Joseph Pease

, Darlington;

George Thompson


David Thomas

, D-D.;

Henry Richard


John Nichol

, B.A. Oxon;

Duncan M'Laren

, Newington House, Edinburgh;

Edward Smith

, Sheffield;

Frederick Baines

. Leeds;

Benjamin Scott

, F.R.A.S.,;

Edmond Beales

, M.A., Lincoln's Inn;

Edmund Sturge

, Birmingham;

John Lee

, L.L.D., Hartwell;

Jabez Burns

, D.D.;

Joseph Cooper

, Lloyd's;

John Cropper

, Liverpool;

John Hodgkin

, Lewes;

Henry Vincent


Washington Wilks


L. A. Chamerovzow


George Gilfillan

, Dundee;

John Cassell


Arthur Trevelyan

, J.P.M Teinholm Tranent, N.B.;

J. J. Colman

, Norwich;

Richard Smith

, 7, Highbury Crescent;

F. W. Chesson

, Secretary of the Aborigines' Protection Society;

A. K. Isbister

, M.A.;

John Epps

, M.D.;

Joseph Cowen, jun.

, New-castle-on-Tyne;

John Mayfield

, 300, Holborn;

Francis E. Fox

, Tottenham;

Justin M'Carthy


John Cropper

, Kendal;

James Taylor

, jun., Birmingham;

Wilson Armistead

, Leeds;

William Anderson

, L.L.D, Glasgow;

Frederick Wheeler

, Rochester;

Hy. Richardson

, Newcastle-on-Tyne;

Joseph Lupton

, Leeds;

Caleb Fletcher

, M.D., York.