Extract from Letter of the Superintendent of the Southern Division to
Governor Sir George Grey, dated 26th July, 1847.
When I was up the coast last week, I was met at Waikanae by a large concourse of the Ngatiawa Tribe, including William King and many of the most influential chiefs, to whom I made known your Excellency's views relative to their meditated move to Taranaki, and was much gratified to find that no disposition existed on their part to act in opposition to them; their demeanour was quiet, respectful, and exhibited no symptom of annoyance with or resistance to the Government. William King stated that, although they were still bent upon going to that district, yet they repudiated the idea of doing so by stealth, or before consulting with the Governor and learning the time he would permit of their removal; adding that the Ngatiawa Tribe had always been friendly to the Europeans, and it was their desire to continue on the same amicable terms they have hitherto been. I, however, much incline to the opinion that the emigration, if it ever takes place, will be very partial, probably merely William King and his followers, as I found many indifferent and some altogether averse to leaving Waikanae. At Queen Charlotte Sound also it appears the principal chief, Ropata, has not yet given his consent, and in this neighbourhood the Ngatiawas are cultivating as usual, and now show no symptom of moving. William King, on behalf of those at Waikanae, urged strongly the purchase by Government of the district; and, when I mentioned that I did not think your Excellency contemplated making further purchases of land at present, they evinced the utmost anxiety (engendered no doubt by the scarcely concealed intention of the Ngatitoa Tribe to take possession of the land when they leave it) that a promise should be given, if the Government did not wish to obtain the district when the time was decided upon for their departure, that they should be the parties negotiated with, and to whom the purchase-money should be paid, whenever it was considered expedient to acquire the land…..