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The Pamphlet Collection of Sir Robert Stout: Volume 24

From Mr. H. W. Farnall to his Honor the Superintendent, Auckland. Auckland New Zealand Provincial Government Emigration Agency, 2½ Corporation-street, Belfast, March 10th, 1874

From Mr. H. W. Farnall to his Honor the Superintendent, Auckland. Auckland New Zealand Provincial Government Emigration Agency, 2½ Corporation-street, Belfast,


I beg to acknowledge receipt of your Honor's communication of 10th December, in which you request me to act as agent for the Provincial Government, under the terms of the "Auckland Waste Lands Act, 1867," copies of which you forwarded to me.

I have much pleasure in acceding to your Honor's request, and assure you that I will use my utmost endeavors to promote suitable emigration for the Province of Auckland, and trust that future events may prove that the confidence you repose in me is not misplaced.

There are one or two points in connection with my work, upon which it is necessary I should be enlightened; and I should feel obliged by your giving me as early a reply as possible to the queries contained in this letter. They are of such importance that I would suggest that replies be sent by telegram.

The two most important questions are: 1st. May I issue land orders to those who are receiving free or assisted passages to Auckland, or rather I should say, may those to whom I give land orders take advantage of the free (or assisted, as the case may be) passages offered by the Government. I am quite aware that the various land regulations for the giving of free grants are based upon the assumption that those receiving such a grant defray the whole cost of their passage, and the Agent-General some time since, when this same subject was in dispute in the matter of Mr. Stewart's party, informed me that he had consulted with Mr. John Hall, of Canterbury, on the subject, and they had come to the conclusion that my proposal, to allow assisted or free passages and free grants of land, was perfectly monstrous.

It seems to me that unless the free passages are allowed to that particular class of emigrants, most needed by our Province, we shall be most unfairly page 29 dealt by, and shall have to pay our share of the immigration debt without reaping any adequate advantage.

If we pay our share towards introducing the classes of emigrants most suitable for the other Provinces, why should we not be allowed to introduce on the same terms the class most needed by ourselves?

I pointed out in a former letter to your predecessor in office that those tenant farmers and others, who might, by the sale of their properties, realize enough to guarantee their success as settlers, would altogether lose that probability of succeeding were they called upon to pay £15 or £16 per adult for their passages.

This is a matter in my opinion that calls for most serious consideration The responsibility of issuing the Land Orders to emigrants receiving free passages should, I think, be left to your local agent, who should take the greatest pains to ascertain, prior to granting the order, whether the applicant is in possession of sufficient means to warrant his receiving it.

The second subject upon which I wish to be advised is whether terms similar to those obtained by Mr. Stewart would be extended to another raising a party of a similar description.

I observe in the postscript to your Honor's letter you state that certain "blocks of land are to be reserved for the location of immigrants."

It would very materially assist me in my work were I supplied with a map showing the blocks referred to, their locality, acreage, &c., I would further wish to be informed whether any blocks of land have been reserved for Special Settlements. If not whether you would, on receipt of a telegram from me, informing you that I had got a sufficient number of emigrants together, reserve for their special occupation any block that I might specify?

I wrote to the Agent-General on receipt of your Honors letter informing him of your having appointed me Agent for the Provincial Government. In reply, he informs me that he has received no intimation whatever from either the General or Provincial Governments of my appointment. I then wrote and requested him to inform mc in what position I was to consider myself as respects his office, but to this I have not yet received any reply. I presume Dr Featherston will have been instructed by the Colonial Government of my official position, if not and he continues to repudiate my proceedings, as he has done for the last eight months, I shall be very seriously embarassed, and my work rendered most difficult.

The frequent postponement of the departure of the ship advertised to sail for Auckland from Belfast, on January 4th, and which has now been fixed for March 16th has given great and general dissatisfaction and the public not unreasonably compare our bungling operations with the smooth working of the other Colonial Agencies.

I have, &c., His Honor The Superintendent, Auckland.

Harry W. Farnall.