The Pamphlet Collection of Sir Robert Stout: Volume 79
Old Hawke's Bay
Old Hawke's Bay.
The Colenso Journals.
The Hocken Library at Dunedin contains three volumes of Colenso manuscripts. The first contains the letters written by Mr Colenso to the Church Missionary Society from 1834 to 1853, from the time he left Loudon to the time at which his connection which the society ceased. The others contain the journal kept by Mr Colenso at Waitangi from 1844 to 1853, and forwarded by him from time to time to the society In addition, they contain the accounts of two journeys, one to the villages of the East Coast in 1841, the other to the South sports of the North Island in 1812-3. The earlier journey of 1838 is not recorded, but is referred to in his printed Jubilee Paper, (Note K p.43). These two volumes contain 1200 closely-written pages of foolscap. It seems that Dr. Hocken was allowed to ransack the cellars of the Church Missionary Society, and select the records bearing on the early history of New Zealand. He found these in danger of destruction by damp and rats, and ultimately persuaded the society to sell them to him. It is fortunate they are now in safe keeping.
It is clear that the journals were copies made by Mr Colenso from his diaries or rough note-books. Whether the latter contained matter not included in the manuscript I do not know—nor whether Mr Colenso kept any similar record for the years prior to 1844 and subsequent to 1853. All attempts page 6 Sydney. The voyage tasted seventeen weeks. On November 1st in a letter written to Mr Danderson Coates, secretary to the Church Missionary Society he announces his arrival at Sydney. The voyage apparently had not been very comfortable, but lie says that "Captain Aitken. I firmly believe, as a captain is a worthy man," which leads one to suspect that in other relations lie was not found so satisfactory. Mr Colenso in this letter asks for some Greek books, no doubt for the purpose of continuing his studies, and also that £5 should be paid halt" yearly out of his salary to his Father in Cornwall. Mr Colenso was obliged to stay eight or nine weeks in Sydney before he could continue his journey. At last on December 10th a small schooner, the Blackbird, of 07 tons was got ready, and he started for the Bay of Islands. In the letter to Mr Coates (January 16th, 1835) he says: "For three weeks were we beat about by contrary winds in the South Pacific in our little boat which was not only very dirty and crammed with cargo, but very leaky. Her leaks gained on her considerably. She drew at last seven inches an hour and kept a hand almost constantly pumping. Hut He who holdeth the winds in his list and ruleth the raging of the seas kept us by His mighty power from any harm, and on Tuesday. December 30th, allowed us to land on the shores of New Zealand." On Saturday, 3rd January 1835—"a memorable epoch in the annals of New Zealand, I succeeded in getting the printing press landed."
At the Bay of Islands.
At this time there were three missionaries with their wives and families living; at Paihia, the Rev. H. Williams, the Rev W. Williams and Mr C. page 7 Baker. They resided in three separate and rather large houses, which with their houses for domestics, carpenter's and blacksmith's shops and storehouses, and the mission chapel and infants' storehouses in the middle composed the buildings of the mission station and made quite a little Tillage. In the autumn of the same year the Rev, W. Williams was transferred to Te Waimate, a station sixteen miles inland, and Mr Colenso went with Mr Williams, who was translator and editor of the Testament and other books in Maori which Mr Colenso was to produce. I may mention here that the most interesting picture of the Bay of Islands settlement at the time of Mr Colenso's arrival is to be found in Darwin's "Voyage of the Beagle". The Bay of Islands was quite an important place of trade even at this time much frequented by vessels engaged in the whaling, timber and flax trades. In 1836 no fewer than 160 ships put in at the Bay of Islands including 90 British and 50 American, while Kororareka, the chief settlement, had about 300 inhabitants exclusive of sailors whose revels were the chief cause of the disturbances which broke the peace of the settlement.
Mr Colenso has published in the pamphlet "Fifty Years Ago" a full account of his early printing operations; and it is not necessary to detail these here. It is sufficient to say that the first book, a portion of the New Testament, was printed in Maori, in 1835, and that the printing of the complete New Testament in the same language was begun in 1836.
In addition to this work, Mr Colenso took his share? in missionary labours, conducting services at the various settlements on the bay—at Waitangi where the British Resident. Mr Busby, page 8 lived, at Kororareka (now Russell) where the main anchorage was—and so on. When the printing of the New Testament was completed in 1838, he and Mr W. Williams took a holiday and visited Poverty Bay by sea, bringing back with them youths to be trained at the Mission Station as native teachers.
After the journey he offered himself to the Church Missionary Society as a travelling missionary, and this offer was accepted. In December, 1842, a Mr Telford arrived to take over the work of printing. It may be noted that by this time Mr Colenso had printed and bound nearly 7000 prayer books, 10,000 primers and 5000 New Testaments. Mr Colenso had in April, 1842, married, and was now apparently studying at Waimate for his ministerial duties. In a letter dated October 2nd, 1843, he stated that Bishop Selwyn had deferred his admission to deacon's orders and had told him that when licensed he would probably be placed at Ahuriri. On September 22nd 1844, the bishop admitted him along with Mr J. Hamlin to deacon's orders at Waimate, and shortly after he left the Bay of Islands.
Before quitting this part of the story it is well to add among the chief incidents he witnessed. The first was the visit of the Beagle with the celebrated naturalist, Darwin, on December 25th, 1835, with whom he says he spent a long and happy day, although neither noted the fact in his journal at the time. Lieutenant Hobson, the first Governor, arrived at Kororareka in January, 1840. Mr Colenso acted for some time as Government printer until he found it interfered with his duty to the missionaries, and was one of the witnesses to the famous Treaty of Waitangi, of which page 9 he has written an interesting account. At this timo there were perhaps 2000 English people living in New Zealand, some 500 or so being settled in the Bay of Islands, and many were attempting to purchase land from the natives for settlement. The missionaries, as we know, were obliged to protect themselves in a similar manner, but their purchases were modest beside those of other claimants, some of whom asserted a right to five, ten, or twenty million acres.
By the time the Governor arrived, the question of deciding the validity of these land claims had become of the first urgency. In January, 1841, Mr Colenso writes of "the ferment about the land question." He says: "It is a sign that we are living in the latter days when I perceive even here at the Antipodies the same anarchical, ultra-republican spirit which appears to have pretty nearly circumambulated with rapid strides the whole globe." And in other places he refers to the difficulties caused by the missionaries holding land, although in the circumstances of the country it is difficult to seo how else they could have provided for their families. ("Treaty of Waitangi," p 20)
Before finally leaving the Bay of Islands, Mr Colenso made three journeys, on the third making his first visit to Hawke's Bay in the summer of 1843, along with Mr W. Williams, the first Bishop of Waiapu. They left Poverty Bay by schooner for Port Nicholson, intending to return by land, but after a whole fortnight at sea were glad to land at Castle Point, from which place they travelled slowly to Ahuriri. On December 8th, 1843, they reached Awapuni—near Farndon— page 10 where he found Archdeacon Williams. Ten iteres had been given to the missionaries at this place by the Maoris, and a small chapel, which he describes as a fine building, had been begun, but was not yet finished. On the return he and Mr Williams journeyed together to Wairoa when they separated, Mr Colenso returning to the Hay of Islands by a long and circuitous route via Waikaremoana, Ruatahuna, Whakatane, Tauranga, Manukau and Whangarei.
Arrival at Ahuriri
Mr Colenso, along with Mr Hamlin, was admitted to deacon's orders at Waimato on September 22nd, 1844, and on December 13th, 1844 the two missionaries left by the brig Nimrod for their new locations, Mr Hamlin for the Wairoa, and Mr Colenso for Ahuriri. The little vessel anchored off Ahuriri on December 29th. and the captain took a boat and pulled to the harbour to take soundings. Ho reported favourably, and the vessel worked in. Next day the cattle were landed, and the vessel then sailed ten miles to the east where the natives had put up a house. Canoes came alongside and took off their goods and in the evening Mr and Mrs Colenso and their infant son went ashore.
It is perhaps worth while dwelling a moment on the courage of these early settlers who went thus cheerfully into the wilderness, and suffered not only much privation, but were frequently in actual danger from the native population. Without roads, without neighbours, without doctors or schools, their lot was indeed anything but a pleasant one. Mrs Colenso, moreover, was left alone for long intervals while her husband was absent on his regular visitations of the country between Napier page 11 and Wellington, the sole European, except the wild and generally ill-disposed whites at the various whaling stations in the bay. Mr Colenso makes a very infrequent mention of the whaling stations. For the most part he could not fail to recognise that they were opposed to his work, and that their influence with the natives was of doubtful benefit. He mentions as a favourable exception Mr Morris, whose station was close to the Kidnappers. The greater part of the stations were at the Wairoa end of the bay. I could find no details regarding these in Mr Hamlin's reports.
Mr Colenso's goods were landed on January 3rd, 1845, and two days later the first service was held in the church 150 natives being present. He at once set about building a study for himself, fencing the land, and getting things into order. As illustrating the difficulties of dealing with the natives his journal records (February, 1845) that a native named Walker demanded payment for a boatshed which they were putting up before it was finished. Colenso refused and Walker took up two spades. Colenso declared that he would not submit to this, and that Walker must pay him two pigs and ten baskets of potatoes as compensation for this insult. He further announced that he would buy nothing from Walker's tribe. This brought the Maoris into a more reasonable frame of mind, for the white man was the only source of cash, and the matter was arranged, not however before Walker endeavoured to persuade Colenso to settle the dispute by wrestling. The Maori was 6ft. 2in. high and Mr Colenso likens himself and his opponent to David and Goliath. In the end Walker returned the spades but tapu'd the road. Colenso then page 12 put a boiler on the road and made it common again, and so the dispute ended.
The Mission Station.
Writing to the society a year later (June 18th, 1846) Mr Colenso speaks very bitterly of his location: "We larely get any news here until it is very old. The place is quite out of the way, low, damp, cold and unhealthy, surrounded with morasses, and having snow upon the mountains and hills for several months in the year. The bishop said lie thought it was the most disagreeably .situated mission station in all New Zealand. In fact there is nothing whatever to recommend it—no wates, no wood, no good harbour, no shelter from stormy winds—not having hill or tree or bush near us—no female domestics to be had among the natives, and worse than all, no well disputed natives. All my stores, cases, etc., from England have always come to hand more or less rotten and my loss has been very great. In another letter (December 31st, 1816) he described it as "the coldest mission station in New Zealand, where in the winter the milk freezes in the pantry and the water in the bedroom." He had to pay several pounds for firewood during the winter, and all water had to be fetched in casks from a consirerable distance at the rate of 1s a cask. (Journals June, 1847).
On one occasion after a flood the chief Tareha said to Colenso, "No one ever dwelt on this spot before; it has always been the dwelling place of an eel." No wonder Colenso suffered severely from rheumatism as a result of the damp situation. Later on (Journals. July, 1852. Letters October 12th, 1852) he acquired a site of 100 page 13 acres at Rotoatara—the Te Aute Lake—where he proposed to remove the station, and probably would have done so but for the termination of his connection with the Missionary Society. He gives an interesting account of the ceremony of purchase, which included the presentation of a spadeful of earth, a calabash of water from the lake, and a fern root, a ceremony of interest to students of law. This was probably the origin of the Te Aute trust estate.
In his printed paper on his first visits to the Ruahines (page 4), Mr Colenso describes the site of the mission station, and his words may be quoted here. "Words would fail me to knew the original state of that land I At this time, I resided at Waitangi, a place near what is now called Farndon—the two large fir trees, and also the row of cabbage trees, raised from seed and planted by me there mark the spot. The principal native villages near, me were at Waipureku (East Clive) and Taanenuirangi, Whakatu, and Pakowhai on the banks of the river Ngaruroro; this last village though greatly reduced and altered, still remains. In those days there was no communication overland between these villages and Waitangi and Te Awapuni (the large Maori pa, or village, near by on the west bank of the Waitangi creek where Karaitiana and his sub-tribe long resided) simply because it was impossible to travel through the dense interlaced jungle of cutting grass and other swamp-loving plants, as the flax, which grew there. The Maoris generally came in small parties almost daily (indeed too often) from those villages to the station; everything being new and strange to them, and having nothing to do; but they invariably came and returned in their small canoes, taking advantage page 14 of the tide to paddle up and down the river. I have travelled a good deal in New Zealand, but I never knew a worse piece of country to get through; neither anywhere else have I seen 'cutting grass' of so large a size, and growing go closely together, and forming such a dense mass, so that a man, a cow or a horse, could not be observed even in looking down from a height (as the top or a house, or a long ladder, or a chimney) when among the immense tussocks. Hence, too, it was that I lost some of my few first cattle before the place got cleared. The whole of the low delta or tongue of land, lying between the two rivers, Ngaruroro and Waitangi was rigidly tabooed by the Maori owners as a wild pig and swamp-hen and eel preserve; hence it had never been cleared or burnt off, and the sun did not shine upon the soil, which was just as wet at midsummer as in winter, with water and slippery mud in the narrow, deep pig channels or ruts and pools among the tussocks. I well recollect on two occasions when out visiting sick natives at Pakowhai, also having domestic natives from the neighbourhood with me, and having lost the tide when returning overland rather late in the day, we were actually obliged after much further effort and sorely against our wills (being utterly un-provided with anything) to remain out in the swamp all night—with wet feet, hungry, no fire and sadly cut hands—through not being able to find our way through the imperious jungle. I have often of late years asked myself when contemplating from the hill (Scinde Island) the rising township of Napier, and the inland level grassy plains, with their many houses, gardens and improvements, and the fast-growing town of Hastings—which of page 15 the two wonderful alterations or changes—the building of the town of Napier, or the great transformation in those swamps—I considered the most surprising, and I have always given it in favour of the plains. And this great change was brought about much earlier than I could reasonably have anticipated, through several causes operating together, viz—my own few cattle—the introduction of grain and clover seeds, and also of wheat, for the natives—and through the natives around generally embracing Christianity, the chiefs taking off the tapu from the land, and so trimming off the jungle—then catching their numerous wild pigs which infested it, and then cutting and scraping the flax for sale to the shipping and traders—who soon lifter my residence came to Ahuriri to trade." Mr Colenso explains that the site was selected because it was tapu and common to all the chiefs. Had he chosen a better site elsewhere lie would have been regarded as the special property of the chief of that locality.
We have already referred to the fact that Mr Colenso was dependent on the Maoris for labour both in working his land, erecting buildings of any sort and s) on. The missionary committee at Paihia had allowed him £70 for the necessary work of completing the mission station, but he found the expenditure far exceeded this estimate. Apparently the committee thought that he should not have exceeded his allowance, and he appealed to the Home authorities for relief as the business had put him in debt. (Letters, June 18th and December 31st, 1846). It may be interesting to know what the cost of building in those days was. Mr Colenso's account shows that ho spent £85 on page 16 timber in the Bay of Islands, paid the chiefs £48 for erecting the house, £23 for other supplies at Ahuriri, £30 to natives for other work done and £10 for medicines, total £250. He explains that he had to do with a hard people in an out-of-the-way place. Kurupo kept the whole price of the timber so that the other chiefs got none. The large quantity of tools included is accounted for by the fact that in addition to his house he had erected eleven chapels and that eight others were in course of erection. It may be mentioned that Bishop Selwyn visited the mission in January 1846 (Letters June 18th, 1846), and that on that occasion he confirmed 130 natives. Colenso records that there were 240 in the district. I find that the native population of Ahuriri at this time was estimated at 5000. ("N.Z. Spectator," September 6th, 1845).
Mr Colenso was called on to administer medicines and other relief to the sick natives of the neighborurhood. While building his house a native cut his hand. Colenso began to dress the wound and while he was doing so the native fainted "Look, he has killed him," said the man's friends. On the native being recovered by a dash of cold water, "See," they said, "he has made him alive again." (Journals, January 5th, 1845). The practica of the medical art must have been attended with considerable danger in those days. The chapel at Waitangi had been built before Mr Colenso's arrival hut had been allowed to get into disrepair. The natives even Kept pigs in it. (Journals. June 7th, 1845). For some time there was a difficulty in getting the repairs effected, the natives demanding pay for their services, which as Colenso remarks is not a good prin- page 17 ciple. In the end, however, they gave way, and on his return from his journey to Gisborne he found them at work putting the chapel to rights. (Journal, August 13th, 1845). This chapel was the second to be erected in Hawke's Bay—that at "Waipukurau being the first. In his first year Mr Colenso informed the society that he had erected 11 chapels and that 8 others were in course of erection. Among other places chapels were built at Tangoio, Rotoatara. Tarawera and Ngawapurua. (Letters, June 18th, 1845). At Waitangi Mr Colenso had a congregation of from 150—200 (Letters, Report for 1847). more than three-fourths of whom had several miles to come. He reports that Tareha, and Kurupo had embraced the faith, also Hapuku's eldest son and Puhara's brother. In a letter dated December 23rd, 1848, he says that his combined congregations totalled 2175, scholars 1570, and communicants 642. Many natives learned to read in order to study the New Testament and in 1848 Colenso states that he had distributed 200 copies of the volume in the previous six months. (Letters, September 14th, 1848). Another well-known chief. Renata Kawepo, came back with Colenso to Hawke's Bay and became a licensed teacher. (Journals, March 19th, 1845). It was the custom to hold an annual teachers' school, and in his report for 1847 (Letters, 1847) Mr Colenso says that 21 attended. He states: "A cheery sign is that 44 natives (including 11 teachers) had, during the past six months, given up the beast y practice of continually smoking, all of whom were inveterate smokers. This is one of the fruits of the annual teachers' school." Again he writes: "A great portion of the sin committed by natives arises from their immoderate and promiscuous use of page 18 tobacco." although Mr Colenso ceased to be the missionary printer on Mr Telford's arrival he had a small hand press at Waitangi and used to print notices, timetables, catechisms and what he calls "Happy Deaths," which I take to be a series of improving narratives of a religious sort—not I imagine of a cheerful nature or specially suited to the native mind. (Journals, January, 1851).
A Great Traveller.
In the course of his work Mr Colenso necessarily became a great traveller, frequently visiting the Wairarapa, and even Patea and Taupo in the course of his district visitations. In February, 1845, Mr Colenso paid his first visit to Patea which he afterwards described in the printed paper already mentioned. The journals deal largely with the details of his interminable wanderings. His charge apparently extended from Waikari in the north to Port Nicholson in the south, including Taupe ("Ruahine" Note C, p. 69), and he was continually journeying from Waitangi to Wellington—always' of course, on foot. The records of these journeys arc not on the whole interesting reading, but they give a very strong impression of the wonderful energy of the man and the arduous physical toil which he cheerfully encountered. Travelling in those days by beach and the rough forest carrying pack was a difficult and laborious task. The traveller frequently went short of food, he was often benighted in the bush and at best had the doubtful accommodation of a native hut. I have not considered it necessary, in view of the details given in the "Ruahine" paper to quote from the record of these journeys. Nor were the natives always friendly to the missionary. They were already feeling the adverse influence of the trader and the page 19 settler, with whom Mr Colenso as a result frequently found himself in conflict. His first visit to the Wairarapa took place in March, 1845. On this journey he called at Mr Barton's station which had recently been pillaged by the natives. He advised the magistrates to demand compensation in pigs and potatoes, but the magistrates were anxious to improve the occasion by securing a grant of land. Mr Barton declared that in that case he would be no better off. (Journals, March 19th, 1845). Mr Colenso, in his letter to the society, speaks of tins visit as a heart-breaking journey," and "mourns the Nero-like spirit of the settlers to the natives" (Letters, June 15th, 1846).
In July of the same year Mr and Mrs Co'euso walked from Waitangi to Gisborne, Mrs Colenso, who was expecting the birth of her second son, wishing to be near a white woman. They left left Waitangi on July 25th and reached Turanga on August 6th. (See Journals). The days' stopping places (emitting the two Sundays when the travellers rested) were Tangoio, Moeangiangi, Waikari, Mohaka, Poututu, Wairoa, Wakaki, and two nights were spent in the forest before reaching Mr Williams' residence.
In connection with his mission work we may note an amusing incident arising from the advent of the Roman Catholic priests. Colenso notes that in 1848 a priest had visited Puhara, This chief told Colenso that the priest wished to see him so that they might both go through the fire and show which was the true faith. On this he remarks: "This fire ordeal is a great word just now with the Papists, both native and European Whether the priests be really in possession of some page 20 salamander-like recipe handed down from some of the monies of the Dark Ages, or of something more modern from their own chemists, or from Chabert, the Fire King (a courtryman of their own) or whether it is another step towards the completion of unfulfilled prophecy (2 Thess, 2-9 and Rev. 13, 13) I know not." (Journals January, 1848). The Meanee Mission was not established till 1852 (see Journals July 2nd, 1852), but before that Colenso had asked the Missionary Society to supply him with copies of the Vulgate and books of controversial theology to prepare for discussions with his competitors.
Two incidents may be referred to as showing the difficulties of dealing with the Maori neighbours. Very shortly after he settled at Waitangi a girl named Ann Parsons was abducted and her father, John Waikato, suspected Mr Colenso of being guilty of it. He came to the mission and assaulted Colenso, caught him by the hair and threw him to the ground. On Mr Colenso demanding compensation, Waikato again knocked him down and the natives threatened to burn his house down. Matters evidently assumed a critical aspect, but Colenso preserved his dignity and appointed a day for an inquiry into the charge. The day came and the girl herself appeared and cleared Colenso. Waikato admitted that he was wrong, and presented a canoe to Colenso as compensation. (Journals August 31st, 1845).
Not long after another trouble arose through the chief Hapuku. Who became convinced that Colenso would interfere with the burial of Pareihe (an old chief). Hapuku was not a convert and he may have desired to Use some native ritual. However, In; vistied Colenso and threatened to put a bono of the page 21 dead man on the road and so close the toad to the mission for traffic. Lazarus had said, "Does he think that we will be afraid of the bone of a dead man." and this had angered Hapuku. Pareiho's grave was close to the common road. Colenso satisfied Hapuku that he would not interfere, and the trouble blew over. (Journals, December 11th, 1845). On two occasions Colenso prevented tribal warfare. In 1847 Wanganui natives asked for men and ammunition to help them in a raid on Tatipo. This was refused through Colenso's influence. (Letters, Report, 1847). Again in the same year the chief Tiakitai and a party of 23 were drowned on the way to the Nuhaka in what Colenso calls a heathen excursion they having been repeated by and wonderfully warned not to go." Some time after Tiakitai's friends wished to start on a taua (punitive raid) to Nuhaka to avenge his death, but Colenso managed to prevent this. (Letters, Report 1847, Journals, July, 1847).
The natives were keenly interested in agricultural work although it does not appear that the Ahuriri natives over developed as farmers in the way that the Wairoa and Gisborne natives did. Mr Colenso reports that when the first cow arrived in the bay 120 native canoes put out to welcome it. ("Ruahine" No. A, Page 65). The horse was another object of great curiosity to the native mind On February 9, 1817. (Journals) Mr Colenso notes: "At Ahuriri met natives bringing horse from Rotorna for a chief, the first seen in those parts." The following year he notes: "The horse is a curse to the natives : the greatest hindrance to their good. They till less ground, catch less fish and become more lazy and careless." In the 1851 report (letters) to page 22 the Society lie say or "Never until this year have the tribes been in possession of so much ivor.dly riches, especially wheat and money. Last autumn they had a fine crop of wheat which they most impatiently disposed of for horses, to which purpose also by far the greater number of those who had received a share of money for their alienated lands have wilfully squandered it, giving as much as £40 and even £60 for a horse. Upwards of 50 horses have been brought into this neighbourhood dining the last six months, some of which have already died. One native has been killed and several more or less injured by falling from their horses. I almost fear to state the hundreds of bushes's of wheat which they raised and sold last autumn lest it should be thought improbable, especially when the short time which has elapsed since I first procured them seed wheat from Auckland and the great distance many of them have to bring it 'to market is considered, These remarks remind us of the natives' traffic in motor ears to-day. So keen was the desire for horses that the native teacher Renata, who seemed to have quarrelled with Colenso, turned horse-dealer and brought some beasts to Ahuriri in 1950, to the great joy of this native community. (Journals. December 10th, 1850).
Maori and Pakeha.
Mr Colenso naturally came to hold the position of mediator between the natives and the white settlers. As already indicated, he was more in sympathy with the natives than the settlers. The missionaries resented the interference of the settlers in their work, and the settlers returned the i1-feeling with interest. It must be confessed that the missionaries were not without some excuse-for their attitude. An in- page 23 stance of the friction between them is furnished by the difficulties in connection with the employment of natives on road work in the Wairarapa. (Journals, August 1841). In 1841 he notes: "Saw natives at work on road, each party under the charge of a white man, who generally reclined smoking under a tree. I reminded them of the Fourth Commandment. They said that had long ago been thrown aside." This indicates the cause of the trouble. Colenso sought to check the evil influence of the low whites, the whites retaliated by charging Coenso with interfering with the Government work. It came at length to a formal information to the authorities which stated that the natives in the Wairarapa had refused to work on the roads because Colenso had said it was work which would lead to bloodshed and had threatened them ft the excommunication The Governor asked the Rev, W. Williams to inquire into the charges. He reported that he found the native teachers anxious because the road workers absented the visitors from the services and were induced to shoot pigeons and dance hakas on Sunday, which are contrary to the Christian profession." Mr Colenso had told them that it was good to work on the ronde if in so doing they did not depart from Christian duty, but that otherwise they could not maintain a Christian profession. One native had proposed the exchange of his niece for a piece of print. Mr Colenso was there shortly after and had spoken strongly against it as in duty bound and had said: "This piece of print which you have received is the price of blood. It will seal the ruin of both body and soul of the child." Now this is a very different version, says Mr. Williams, from that T have heard in Wellington and will bear investigation all the world over. The Governor ac- page 24 cepted the statement as full and satisfactory, but Mr Colenso was not satisfied till lie had reported the whole circumstances with copies of every document and letter at immense length to the Society. (Letters, November 25th, 1847).
The whalers in Hawke's Bay made the same complaint. Colenso writes: "The masters of the whaling stations in Hawke's Bay complained that I taught the natives not to work for them. What I really taught was not to work on Sabbath day, not to drink spirits or swear or omit their prayers or bring women for prostitution, for you cannot do these things as Christians: and when by and by they found that they could not remain at the whaling stations without doing such things they left." (Letters, page 254).
In 1852 Air Alexander told Colenso that the settlers were incensed against him for putting the Natives against them. Colenso said he was ready to meet the settlers. He had always advised the natives not to work on Sundays, nor stay away from divine service, nor to encourage the settlers to visit their villages on Sundays and not to permit teachers to become trading masters at their villages for the whites."
Another instance of his mediation occurred in connection with the attempt to purchase native land for the purposes of settlement In September 1848, he writes that he has received letters from Mr Domett asking him to use his influence with the natives on behalf of the Canterbury Association, which then apparently proposed to purchase a large area in the Wairarapa for a Church of England settlement. Mr Colenso writes: "The Government wishes to purchase the whole of the country from Wairarapa to Ahuriri, which if done will certainly seal the page 25 natives' ruin, for unless their reserve is in one Mock and at a distance from the whites, I cannot see any chance of their escaping the hitherto common fate of all aborigines with whom the white has come in contact," and he adds, "may the Lord guide me in this matter." On his visits to the Wairarapa In; had urged the natives not to let their lands to the whites and liad thus incurred the settlers' displeasure. He accordingly wrote to Governor Eyre stating that the natives were opposed to parting with the whole of their possessions. Fie says: "Yesterday I met Hapuku and other principal chiefs at the village and spent some time with them informing them of the projected Canterbury settlement and Its benefits, and of the wish of the Government to purchase the whole of the country between Ahuriri in and fort Nicholson as detailed in your letter to me. One thing only, as far as I recollect. I did not mention to them the proposed life annuity of £25 to four of the leading chiefs. Having faithfully informed them of what I knew from Your Excellency's letter. I also told them that henceforward I should not interfere or have anything to say in the matter of their doing as they pleased with their lauds, and that I could not conscientiously deviate from the advice I had formerly given them:—(1) Never to sell the whole of their land; and (2) if they conclude to sell it to be sure to have their reserve in one block with a good natural boundary between," On December 23rd, 1848. he wrote again respectfully declining to aid the Government by influencing the natives to sell their whole land and accept scattered reserves, but promising to preserve a strict neutrality in the matter.
Upholding the Law.
Mr Colenso was frequently employed page 26 to recover goods stolen by the natives from vessels wrecked in the Day. The coast seems to have had some danger for small craft for there are a number of cases of shipwreck. On January 2nd, 1846 (see Journals, also "N.Z. Spectator", January 14th, 1846) he secured restitution of the goods stolen from the United States brig Falco, wrecked on July 27th at Table Cape. When the chiefs arrived from Nukutaoroa with the goods Bishop Selwyn was staying at the Mission. Tiakitai, no doubt to mark his displeasure at having to return them, said that henceforward the bishop should be his father, Colenso replied: "That is well; let him be your father for books, medicines, and nails too." (Journals, January 2nd, 1846).
In January, 1840 the cutter Royal William was robbed at Ahuriri. The 'New Zealand Spectator" on January 10th says: "We aro informed that the Royal William, on her trip to Hawke's Bay was rushed by the natives, who took out of her whatever articles of trade they required and left in return what they considered an equivalent in pigs. This may be freetrade, but we should think it desirable to place such trade under proper restrictions." Mr Colenso on January 12th secured a return of the stolen articles.
In July, 1847, the Sarah Jane was lost at Uruti (Wairarapa) and plundered by the natives. Again Mr Colenso helped to recover the stolen goods. The next year he reports that a trading vessel was wrecked at Cape Turnagain. But this time the goods were stored in native huts and mostly restored to the owners. A similar incident is referred to in a letter written by Mr Colenso to the "New Zealand Spectator," April 28th, 1847: "The Flying Fish, Captain ".Mulholland, came into Ahuriri to refit. The captain and crew fell out and some page 27 of the latter left the vessel. A chief had tapud trade which the captain sold to another. The chief struck the captain and took away other goods." Colenso persuaded the chief to pay for these and in addition gave a pig for striking the captain.
Mr Colenso was the first white resident in Hawke's Bay save the whalers. With some of them he was on friendly terms. On December 9th, 1845 (Journal) he writes: "W. Morns, owner of the whaling station at Cape Kidnapper, from whom I have received several favours in anding and bringing my goods in his boat and in landing stores when in want, called today to request me to use my influence and speak to Kurupo in his behalf as he thought he was about to treat him hardly and perhaps to rob his place. The cause is this. Morris, who has resided for several years among the natives has been in the habit, in common with other masters of whaling schooners, of giving the chief to whom the place belonged a trifling sum per annum for the right of fishing off that spot, but now Kurupou demanded £10, saying less he would not have. Morris declared that rather than give it he would leave and go elsewhere to reside: adding that of all natives he had ever seen and dealt with, those residing hereabouts were the worst. Now, when the immense outlay these men have to make before they are ready to whale—their constant exposure in the cold and winter season (for it is only then that the whales approach the coast) to daily peril, if not acath, and the very great uncertainty attendant upon their labour are on the one hand duly considered, and on the other the grat benefit in in the way of trade which the natives page 28 desire from them it will, I think be evident that £5 per annum is money enough for (as they call it.) a 'standing' place for the Frypot. I told Morris that I would speak to Kurupou and I wrote to the caller to come and see me." (Journal).
On June 13th, 1847, Morris culled to ask help against some of his Europeans. Some of' these men left him and stole some whaling gear from the natives for their own use. Colenso saw one of these men at Alexander's place at Wharerangi and got his promise to refund the goods.
The following month Smith, a decent looking white man from the Wairoa, came to him about the theft of his things by white men. "He spoke or the whites residing in this bay as the very lowest and worst he ever knew—runaway soldiers and man-of-warsmen, convicts from New South Wales and Van Dieman's Land, who openly boast of their defiance of the Government." Colenso appealed to Morris who wrote to say that the natives would join Smith to recover the goods. (Journal, July 6th and 8th, 1847).
Another whaler was Edwards, master of the trading station at Putotaranui, a few miles south of Cape Kidnappers. On August 18th, 1845) (see Journals), he called on Colenso and said he heard that the natives intended to murder the whites, no doubt hoping for his help. On January 27th, 1847, Edwards' house was burned down with his little boy in it. The infant was buried at the mission near Edwards' new place of residence.
The White Settlers.
Notices of the white settlement are regrettably scarce in the journals. On May 22nd, 1846, he notes: "A white man has come to the harbour of Ahu- page 29 riri to reside, and while he himself appears a respectable man, his men will want native women. Kurupou called and promised not to procure them." Mi Alexander on January 13th, 1817, as already mentioned, had begun farming at Wharerangi. In July, 1874. Alexander had started a white trader at Ngamoerangi, half way to Tongoio. These whites had a different standard of conduct from the missionaries, and the natives complained to Colenso of the bad example of professors of Christianity. (Journals July 19th, 1847). Alexander and the settlers, as we have seen, complained of Colenso setting the natives against them. On August 1st, 1848 (see Journals) a white man was settled as sawyer at Tangoio, and had his saws stolen. On April 17th, 1852. Colenso notes in his journal that "Anketell, a newly arrived trader at Ahuriri, complained of robbery on his premises by four natives. Colenso obtained the return of the goods. On December 10, 1850, Colenso (Journals) mentions that Moauanui wanted to buy a cow, but Colenso had arranged to drive his cows after Christmas to Mr Guthrie at Castlepoint apparently owing to want of feed at the station.
In December, 1850. Mr Donald McLean arrived at Ahuriri and stayed there till April, 1851. with a surveying party. He bought two large blocks giving £1800 for one at Waipukurau, and £1000 (as a first instalment of £7000) for Ahuriri. This was the origin of Napier. Colenso received £1 from each native vendor for medical comforts for the sick. (Letters Report, 1851).
On September 2nd, 1851, Mr Colenso writes to the society: "Two matters have occurred which may affect us—the arrival of the well-known J. Grindell at Ahuriri with a largo lot of goods, there page 30 to settle; and the licensing of the European built house in that place as a bush public house. When I called a short time back upon the person to whom the license has now been granted he told me that he was a Presbyterian and a deacon of his church, and that his aim would be strictly to Steep the Sabbath Day. The man has also a family of ten small children.
On June 9th, 1852 (Journal), Colenso went to Tongoio to conduct a wedding service. He notes that Mr Abbott, a settler of Waipukurau also attended, On the return journey they had a hard pull and grounded on the mud at Te Onepoto, Mr Alexander's place, and one of the crew purposely threw Colenso into the water to his great annoyance.
On January 31st, 1853, he writes to the Society that the Mission house at Waitangi has been burned down, only the study which contained his printing press and specimens being saved. He says he lost £300 by the occurrence, (same letter). The same month he was summoned before Mr McLean for assaulting a native who had insulted him, and fined £3 which he refused to pay. Shortly before this, November 29th, 1852, Mr Colenso's connection with the Missionary Society terminated and his journal ceased.
A few words may be devoted to the state of the settlement at that time. The whalers were already here when Mr Colenso arrived in 1844. Air Alexander settled at Onepoto in 1840. Hollis opened the first public house at the Port in 1851. In 1852 there were about 50 whites with their families settled at the Port, including: Mr Villers and Mr McKain. Mr McLean was the first Government officer to reside there and he held a magistrate's court in the Whare Kawana erected for him by page 31 the natives in 1852 in Battery road. By this timo the Port was already a place of trade in Maori produce. There were eight hotels, often full of travellers. The settlement of the country began in 1849 when Messrs H. S. and F. J. Tiffen came from the Wairarapa and settled on the plains. Land was quickly taken up, and in 1852 Mr Alexander and Mr Burton did a good business in carting wool and other produce from the country to the Port. The first sale of the Napier sections took place in 1855. and in the same year it was appointed as a port of entry.
The End of his Career.
Mr Colenso removed to Napier in 1854. and on the introduction of Provincial Government in 1859 became member for Napier and Provincial Auditor. He was subsequently Speaker from 1871 to 1875 and Inspector of Schools. In 1861 he was elected member of the General Assembly for Hawke's Bay, and retained the seat till 1866. He died on February 10th, 1899 in his 88th year.