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The Pamphlet Collection of Sir Robert Stout: Volume 30


page 25

My reply to J. 80/2411.

"Galatea, 19th June, 1878. Merely adjourned cases to Opotiki."

Galatea Court was adjourned under written instructions from the Chief Judge because Galatea Court clashed with the Court then sitting at Opotiki. Vide following letter:—

"Native Land Court, "Auckland,


In the absence of the Chief Judge, I am directed to inform you that you have been appointed a Judge of the Court, and to request that you will be good enough to proceed at once to Galatea, Bay of Plenty, and open the Court advertised to sit there on the 19th inst., and adjourn the cases to Opotiki for hearing by Judge Heale.


"A. J. Dickey,

"Chief Clerk.

"Judge Wilson, Tauranga."

See also telegram from myself to Judge Fenton.

"The Galatea Court was adjourned according to direction on the 19th to Opotiki, 28th inst., Judge Halse having named a day at my request. It was necessary to adjourn from Galatea in any case, as it is not possible for a Court to exist there. Food and shelter are unprocurable for money, and the Assessor and myself were compelled to accept hospitality kindly proffered by a party who, however, had an interest in the issue of the Court.

"J. A. Wilson, Judge."

Thus, I am secretly accused by Judge Fenton of obeying his own written instructions. Could anything be more calculated to injure an innocent person?

2. Here Maketu Court, presided over by me from 5th August to 12th August inclusive, is omitted altogether. At this court I took 1,700 names for Judge Heale. Heard and decided against Chaytor's case re Waitahanui—two days—and commenced Rau o te Huia case.

This Court was adjourned in accordance with instructions received from Judge Fenton. See the following telegram:—

page 26
"Judge Wilson, Tauranga.

"Please relieve Heale at Maketu, as soon as possible. He is knocked up. You can adjourn such claims as from your previous engagements, you prefer not to hear.


"F. D. Fenton,

"Chief Judge."

See also a telegram from Judge Heale to myself, showing the arduous nature of my duty.

"Maketu, "Judge Wilson, Tauranga.

"I must in any case stay till Monday, the excitement and violence are so great, that I cannot run away.


"Theo. Heale."

This is the Court out of which Judge Heale and myself were ejected on the 5th August by the violence of the natives, Chief Judge Fenton being unable to do more than reply when informed of the circumstance:—

"Messrs Heale and Wilson, Judges Native Land Court, "Maketu.

"You are on the spot and can judge best. Do absolutely what you think should be done.

"F. D. Fenton,

"Chief Judge."

This Court had sat four months in opposition to the wish of the natives, whose further riot was averted by conciliation. Why has this Maketu Court been omitted from J. 80/2411? On the 5th August I entered it, following Judge Heale as my senior, and the same day I wired to the Native Minister: "In the Court to-day Te Pokiha declared the prosecution of business would produce bloodshed. The Court-house was full of his tribe, all men armed with newly-pointed spears, hatchets, and Maori weapons, while a guard armed with spears kept the Court-house door, and prevented other hapu's and their spokesmen from delivering to the Court the names for certain certificates. The violence of Te Pokiha is extreme and organised withal."

I had to pay £7 for repairs to doors, windows, and furniture, broken during the disturbances in the Court before I page 27 relieved Judge Heale. On the 13th August I wired to Judge Pen ton: "The Court at Maketu was adjourned yesterday afternoon; the natives were most orderly.

Having, therefore, performed much difficult work at this Court, and having changed the natives from armed rioters to a condition "most orderly," why does the Chief Judge, who knew these things to be true, omit this Court from a document that pretends to show my work at that time?