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Early Wellington

Chapter XIV

page 165

Chapter XIV.

Patriotic Meetings—Chamber of Commerce—A Political Dinner—The Drama—The Civil Service — Duke of Edinburgh's Visit — Whalers in Town —Synagogue Consecrated—Our Girls—Gear's—The Flying Squadron—Retrospection—Death of Te Puni—A Pakeha's Lament.

“I remember, I remember
Where I was used to swing,
And thought the air must rush as fresh
To swallows on the wing;
My spirit flew in feathers then,
That is so heavy now.
And summer pools could hardly cool
The fever on my brow!”
T. Hood.

A patriotic meeting was held in the Athenæum on the 24th March, 1855, to consider the contribution of funds for the necessities of the families of those brave men who were fighting at Alma, Balaclava and Inkerman.

A proposal by Mr. A. de Bathe Brandon that a central committee be formed was seconded by Mr. W. Bannatyne, and the proposal was put into effect.

Contributions raised at the meeting amounted to £500, including £103 15s. collected by Mr. John Varnham towards a testimonial to Governor Grey, which had been refused by His Excellency. During the week the amount was raised to £842 13s., and in May the sum of £1487 4s. 6d. was realised.

Another meeting was held at the Traveller's Rest, Porirua Road; Dr. Curl was in the chair. Contributions were collected, a good number amongst whom was Richard Hammond, gave £10 each.

Another effort was made by the ladies of Wellington, who held a Bazaar in the Athenæum on the 1st May, 1855, and at which the following ladies were stall holders: Mesdames Featherston, Knowles, Clifford, Ward, Gold, Green, Hort and Murray; Misses Woodward and Hatton.

A Society was formed at this time, to formulate a plan to improve the road to Nga-uranga. The prospectus of this Association, called the Nga-uranga Road Society, appeared in the “New Zealand Spectator” of the 22nd August, 1855.

The same newspaper contains, in its issues of the 15th to 25th October, 1856, the advertisement of the first general meeting of the members of the Chamber of Commerce, at the offices of Bethune and Hunter, on Friday, the 31st October, 1856. The notice was signed by Jonas Woodward, Secretary.

In the same column a house of four rooms in Mulgrave Street, opposite Major Richmond's old house, was adver- page 166 tised for sale. The land had a frontage of 30ft., 180ft. depth, with a garden stocked with fruit trees, let for £25 a year.

In March, 1856, a farewell dinner was tendered to Mr. James Smith on the eve of his departure for England in the “Seringapatan.” The affair was held in Swinburne's Commercial Hotel on the 6th March, 1856. Amongst the guests were Messrs. Clifford, Fitzherbert, Fox, Catchpool, Rhodes, Hervey, Stuart, Schultze, Crawford, Joseph, J. Wallace, J. McBeth, J. Knowles, and Mr. A. Hort, Senior, who occupied the chair.

Political Dinner.

A dinner was given to Mr. Samuel Skey at Barrett's Hotel, in celebration of his election as a member for the city of Wellington, by his friends and supporters, on Thursday evening, 23rd October, 1856. The “N.Z. Spectator” of the 25th, commenting on the affair, states:—

“The Government Organ is at no pains to conceal the deep mortification experienced by its masters in the return of Mr. Skey as a member of the Provincial Council, and the spite and malice with which they assail the newly elected member, and those who voted for him, enable us in some degree to estimate the bitterness of their defeat.… . Under the plea of publishing it as a piece of news, the ‘Independent’ has thought fit to give a list of those who voted for Mr. Skey. There can be no mistake as to the motive which prompted this proceeding, however transparent the disguise thrown over it, nor could the governing party have damaged themselves so heavily by any other step. An attempt is made to intimidate voters from exercising their electoral franchise according to their conscience and judgment, by the threat of publicity whenever they shall presume to vote in opposition to the wishes of the Government party. Of course the supporters of Mr. Quin cannot be surprised to find the example which has been set followed; and we publish the names of those who voted for Mr. Quin, that the public, by having both lists placed before them, may have a better opportunity of coming to a right conclusion.”

Mr. E. J. Wakefield, writing to the Editor of the “Spectator” on the 23rd October, 1856, states:—

“Since the “Independent” has honoured me, and other electors who voted for Mr. Skey, by printing a list of our names, supplied by a fictitious gentleman signing himself “Fact,” I hope you will not object to return the compliment by printing the enclosed list of those who voted for Mr. Quin, which I have myself copied from the voting papers.”

One hundred and four names are appended, including some well-known names, viz.:—Messrs. Brandon, Brewer, Catchpool, Cheeseman, Chew, Fitzherbert, Holdsworth, Joseph, Knowles, Lyon, Donald McLean, Thos, McKenzie, Rev. Moir, J. Plimmer, Richardson (2), W. W. Taylor, C. D. R. Ward, G. Waters, and Jonas Woodward.

Mr. W. Bishop also wrote to the “Independent” (the letter appearing in the “Spectator”).

“Sir,—In a style of affected dignity and dictatorial superiority, but displaying at the same time both soreness and spitefulness, you arraign me before a public for voting for Mr. Samuel Skey. I do not concede to you, Sir, being a political partisan.… . Now tell the truth for once, Mr. ‘Independent;’ is not all this explosion of suppressed wrath page 167 because your two great guns did not go off with quite such a loud bang as you expected?.… . I have no wish to throw dirty water upon Representative Institutions, but seeing this Metropolitan City of the Kingdom of Wellington, with its population of three thousand, including the babies, made the stage for a farcical game of King, Lords and Commons, with its Premier and Sergeant-at-Arms; its questions of privilege and its standing orders; its revenue of hundreds of pounds and its debt of tens of thousands—one may well be excused for trying even an experiment like the present, or hope of bringing the ideas of our Legislators down to the common wants of every day life.”

The account of the dinner which was held at Barrett's Hotel on Thursday, 23rd October, 1856, and the speeches, occupied five columns and a half of the issue of the “Spectator” of that date. About sixty-four persons partook, and the proceedings were conducted in the most orderly manner, with the sole exception of the behaviour of a person who attended as a reporter of the “Independent” newspaper, and, in consequence of his unseemly and disorderly conduct, was summarily ejected from the room. Mr. E. J. Wakefield occupied the chair, and Mr. C. Croft was vice-chairman.

After the toast to the Queen was honoured by the company, all standing and singing “God Save the Queen,” other toasts and songs were given as under:—

(1) “Prince Alfred and the Royal Family;” especial mention to the Duke of Cambridge, on account of his distinguished services in the Crimea; song, Mr. Hare, “One Summer Eve I Wandered.” (2) “Army and Navy;” song, Mr. J. Bannister, “The Red, White and Blue.” (3) “His Excellency;” song by Mr. F. Bradey, “The Maids of Merry England.” The chairman then called attention to the special toast of the evening (4) (Mr. Skey). interpolating his speech by quotations from the “Independent,” which he held in his hand. These quotations and subsequent caustic remarks caused shouts of derisive laughter, cheers and interjections. The toast was drunk “three times three” with musical honours, followed by a comic song by Mr. Williams. Mr. Skey's speech was followed by a song “Cheer up, my old Jeanette,” by Mr. Eades. Toast number five was “The People;” song by Mr. R. Cock.

Mr. Croft described Mr. Quin, to the great laughter of his audience, as one who would kill his cat on the Monday for having caught a mouse on Sunday. He also made some marked allusions to the presence of several persons in the room who had voted against Mr. Skey. “He believed it was on principle that, those persons voted for Mr. Quin instead of Mr. Skey; and, no doubt it was “on principle” that they dined with Mr. Skey instead of Mr. Quin. (Great laughter.)

Messrs. R. Hart and Plimmer explained their presence satisfactorily and number six toast, “Mercantile Marine,” was honoured with “three times three” and a song, “Oft in the Stilly Night.” Mr. Bradey then sang “Oh Smile as Now.”

Mr. Valentine proposed the health of Mrs. Skey and the ladies of Wellington. Three cheers were lustily given and “Here's a Health to all Good Lassies” roared stentoriously.

Mr. Croft's health was then honoured by three times three, at the prompting of Mr. E. J. Wakefield. Mr. Valen- page 168 tine supplied the song (the name of which was not recorded). The usual compliment to the chair ended a very pleasant meeting.

The Drama.

Commenting on a dramatic performance that took place at the Royal Olympic Theatre, Manners Street, on the 19th January, 1857, the Reporter of the “Independent”—probably the ejected one of the political dinner in October— writes:—

“Notwithstanding the great attraction that the debates in the Provincial Council now afford the public, the Council Chambers being the place where people most do congregate, there was a very full attendance, the house being filled in every part. The performance commenced with the nautical farce, entitled ‘The Spitfire,’ which was placed upon the stage in a very superior manner. The scenery was particularly good and both astonished and delighted the audience.

“A fancy dance by Miss Tournear, gracefully performed, had to be repeated. A recitation by Mr. Foley and a comic song by Mr. Axtelle were encored, and Mr. and Mrs. Foley's acting kept the house in perfect ecstasies.

“‘The Stranger’ was repeated at the Royal Lyceum Theatre and commanded a Bumper house. The ‘caste dramatique’ was exceedingly good. Mrs. Foley's impersonation of Mrs. Haller was perfect, and the audience called her before the curtain and enthusiastically cheered her. Messrs. Williams, Montague, Wilmot, Foley and Poulter contributed to the success of the evening.”

Condensed Information.

The best part of two columns of the “Spectator,” 16th January, 1858, were devoted to two privates of the 65th Regiment, who were charged with having, on or about the 15th January, 1858, feloniously stolen, taken and carried away, a pair of “Duck trowsers,” the property of James Mears, from his premises on Lambton Quay. The punishment was made to fit the “crime.”

Another flood on the Hutt, resulting in loss of life, occurred on the 23rd January, 1858.

The Bishop of New Zealand consecrated St. Peter's Church on the 13th March, 1858. He was assisted by the Revs. A. Stock, B.A., and A. Baker, M.A. R. Taylor (Whanganui), T. B. Hutton (Hutt), and H. W. St. Hill (Hawtrey); Messrs. R. Cheesman and J. H. Wallace represented the Laity.

The election to fill the vacancies for members of the Provincial Council for Wellington, caused by the resignation of Dr. Featherston and Mr. Fitzherbert, was held on the 28th July, 1858. And a Chamber of Commerce meeting to consider the District Courts Bill, the formation of a Fire Brigade, the erection of an Inner Harbour Light, and for a steamer wharf, was held at Bethune and Hunter's (Old Custom House Street), on February 5th, 1859. Twenty-four members were present.

A correspondent to the “Independent,” writing in 1866, states:—

“The number of persons employed in the service of the New Zealand Government was equal to a regiment of soldiers at its full strength.… . The Official returns of the number of the general Government employees stood at 1,602, excluding Colonial forces, and that the amount paid them in salaries and fees was, in 1865, £193.404.”

page 169

Duke of Edinburgh's Visit.

An event of great importance occurred on the 11th April. 1869, when Prince Alfred, Duke of Edinburgh, landed at Wellington. He received a very warm welcome, for the settlers, though troubled and poor, were thoroughly loyal.

The Premier, Mr. Stafford, had more than his share of troubles. The Imperial troops had been sent home, but the Maoris were still showng fight. Te Kooti on the East Coast, and Titokowaru on the West, were causing enxiety. The Maoris of Pito-one and Hutt Valley, however, made a spontaneous demonstration in honour of the Duke, and they called him “Te Manuwhiri Tuarangi.” There was one warrior of note also, who met the Prince and honoured him signally, though rather pathetically. The son of Te Rauparaha had no son of his own, so he presented to the Duke a prized greenstone heirloom. “As my house has gone like the Moa,” he said, “I bequeath the talisman of my fathers to the son of the Queen of England and New Zealand.” Economically, also, the Colony was experiencing its dark days. Sir Julius Vogel's big public works policy was not in operation; prices were low, and the dawn of brighter days of export was not yet perceived. But the Colonists were happy and contented, and they made the most of the simple pleasures of their lives. The Duke's visit was an occasion for great rejoicing. His Royal Highness was formally received by Sir George Bowen (The Governor), Mr. Stafford (the Premier), and Dr. Featherston (the Superintendent of the Province).

Volunteers formed a guard of honour, and festivities were heartily carried on. There were sailing and rowing races in the harbour, in which the crew of the “Galatea” (the Duke's ship), competed, and receptions, banquets and balls were given.

A carriage, drawn by four greys, conveyed the Royal Traveller from the ship to Government House.

A number of people who flocked into Wellington arrived in all sorts of vehicles drawn by horses. One consisted of a timber wagon fitted out and seating 80 people, and drawn by seven horses driven by uniformed postillions.*

* An illustration of this vehicle appeared in the “Evening Post,” 5th March. 1927.

The Whaler on Shore.

The monotony of town life was varied by periodical visits from whalers, who, in their dealings with the European
Fig. 51—Panoramic view of Thorndon, 1868 (approx.), from a print in the possession of Mr. Hamilton Bannister. Reading from left to right are the residences of Messrs. Bannatyne 1, Schultz 2, Brandon 3, Clifford, Crawford. Levin. Ministerial Residence 4, Barracks 5, H. Jury 6, Guard Room and Rifle Pits 7, Hospital 8, Pipitea 9, Queen's Head 10, Princess Hotel 11, Maori Hostelry 12, Catholic Church 13, Military Cottages 14. W. Dorset 15, Dr. Johnston (Grant Road) 16.

Fig. 51—Panoramic view of Thorndon, 1868 (approx.), from a print in the possession of Mr. Hamilton Bannister. Reading from left to right are the residences of Messrs. Bannatyne 1, Schultz 2, Brandon 3, Clifford, Crawford. Levin. Ministerial Residence 4, Barracks 5, H. Jury 6, Guard Room and Rifle Pits 7, Hospital 8, Pipitea 9, Queen's Head 10, Princess Hotel 11, Maori Hostelry 12, Catholic Church 13, Military Cottages 14. W. Dorset 15, Dr. Johnston (Grant Road) 16.

page 170
Fig. 52—Park Street, 1888, from Wadestown.

Fig. 52—Park Street, 1888, from Wadestown.

Fig. 53.—Park Street, 1928. showing old military cottages opposite Miss Dorset's House.

Fig. 53.—Park Street, 1928. showing old military cottages opposite Miss Dorset's House.

page 171 settlements, resembled sailors back from a cruise.

After they were paid the balance due to them at the end of the season, they went to Wellington or Nelson to spend it.

During the six weeks or two months after their arrival the town of Wellington became a Portsmouth in miniature. Every public house had its fiddle and hornpipe going; the little theatre was filled once a week; and the weak constabulary force of Wellington suffered from various practical jokes.

Boat races, on which heavy bets depended, came off, and an occasional fight, arising from the profound contempt which the whaler expressed for the “lubber of a Jimmy-grant,” as he called the emigrant, completed the programme of the amusements during the period.

Mr. George Macmorran, in his “Schools and Schoolmasters of Early Wellington.” p. 3, refers thus to the whalers who came ashore:—

“Sometimes there were wild attractive scenes when the whalers came ashore, after a successful season, to knock down their cheques. The taverns benefitted most by such incursions.

“How they laughed and stamped and pounded,
Till the tavern roof resounded,
And the host looked on astounded,
As they drank the Ale.”

At such gatherings, especially if rival crews met, there was much boasting; hence there had to be occasional swimming contests and rowing matches, and not unfrequently there were encounters with fists to see who was the better man. The ‘convincing ground’ usually resorted to most frequently in the early morning, was in Upper Sydney Street, where with a circle of admiring and critical and strongly partisan comrades, the principals definitely settled the question of superiority.

“Often, unseen by those below, there crouched amongst the ti-tree. sundry youths who might have been better employed elsewhere, but who were very much interested spectators of the contest taking place in the bottom of the gully.”

Events of the Seventies.

The consecration of the Jewish Synagogue was performed by Mr. D. M. Isaacs, Nelson, on the 16th January, 1870. The choir chanted “How Goodly are Thy Tents, O Jacob, and Thy Tabernacles, O Israel” as the procession entered the building. The Committee comprised Messrs. Jacob Joseph. J. E. Nathan, L. Levy and L. Moss.*

The dress of “Our Girls” must have been exercising some one's mind at this time, for an article on the finery and display of dress occupies two columns of the “Independent” of the 22nd January, 1870.

The description of a building, which, from sheer necessity, has its daily number of callers, appears in the “Independent” of the 23rd August, 1870, i.e.:—

“A new building just erected on Lambton Quay for Messrs. Ling and Gear adds another to the number of capital butcher shops in this city. It is unique in its way and may serve as a model, or at least give a hint of ventilation to the erection of future establishments of a similar kind. The shop is semi-circular in shape and is well calculated to display to advantage a large set out of meat. The depth of the shop is about 20ft., with a height of 17ft.

* The demolition of the wooden structure, the timber of which is in excellent preservation, is being carried out at the present juncture. An illustration of the building may be seen in the “Evening Post,” 19th Dec., 1928. The foundation stone of the new building was laid by the Rabbi, the Rev. H. Van Staveren, on Sunday, 10th Feb., 1929.

page 172 It was opened on Friday evening 19th August, 1870.”*

* The building is still (1929) in use by the Gear Meat Company.

The Flying Squadron.

The Thirtieth Anniversary of Wellington was celebrated in the usual way.

Many faces were upturned to the Signal Station on Mount Victoria on the 22nd January, 1870, when the Flying Squadron was hourly expected to arrive. The crews of the cutters were to race for a cup presented by Captain Rhodes.

Disappointment was expressed on many faces as the morning shortened, and the celebrations commenced.

However, the squadron arrived the day after and a special time was appointed for the men-o'-war's races. There were six entries for the cup, viz.:—The “Challenger's” No. 1, “Phoebe's” “Liverpool's,” “Scylla's,” and the “Challenger's” No. 2 cutters, and the “Endymion's” launch. The cup was won by the “Challenger's” first cutter.

The inscription on the cup was:—

“Presented by W. B. Rhodes, J.P., on the 30th Anniversary of the Colony of New Zealand and in honour of the H.M. Flying Squadron under the command of Rear-Admiral Geoffrey T. P. Hornby; New Zealand, January 22nd, 1870.”


On the eve of the 22nd January, 1840, the inhabitants of the shores of Port Nicholson were anxiously awaiting, as they were on the eve of the 22nd of January, 1870, the arrival of a squadron of six ships.

But the knot on Pito-one beach in 1840 contained but few white faces; dusky forms in mats and blankets formed the majority. The peace-loving Te Puni and the warlike Wharepouri, with their followers and native dogs, awaited the arrival of the ships with mixed feelings.

Europeans were so few that the arrival of so large an addition to their numbers might well be expected with anxiety and anticipations of extreme pleasure.

The “Aurora” was the first to appear, and she was followed by the “Oriental,” “Roxburgh,” “Bengal Merchant,” “Adelaide,” and “Glenbervie.”

These names are as household words to many of our most honoured and oldest settlers, and will carry them back to varied scenes of years now long gone by.

They will recall to many the remembrance of familiar faces now passed away. Well might Moore the poet sing:—

“Oft in the stilly night
Ere slumber's chain has bound me,
Fond memory brings the light
Of other days around me;
The smiles, the tears
Of boyhood's years,
The words of love then spoken,
The eyes that shone,
Now dimmed and gone,
The cheerful hearts now broken!…”

There were bold hearts that undertook the cultivation of the primeval forest which, except on the little open beach at Pito-one, then came down to the water's edge all round the bay. But the change now wrought is evidence enough that they did not shirk the task, and few of the industrious and honest emigrants in those six ships have ever regretted the transfer to these shores. It is only in thus looking back that the work of the old pioneers can be estimated and appreciated; so here's “Hats off to the brave old Pioneers.”

Death and Burial of Te Puni, 1870.

The aged and well known chief, Honiana Te Puni, popularly known as Epuni, died at Pito-one on the 5th December, 1870, deeply regretted by his own people. Many old settlers also were grieved to hear of the death of this fine page 173 old chief; and not without reason, for Te Puni was always the staunch and unwavering friend of the settlers. Te Puni was a chief of high rank and wielded considerable influence. During the course of an unusually long life he was more or less connected with the principal transactions of the two races in the earlier years of the Colony's history, and was one of those who signed the famous Treaty of Waitangi in 1840.

At half past eight on the 9th December (the day being declared a holiday for the Government Employees, Banks and Mercantile firms), an unusual stir was noticeable. Numbers of people, some of them wearing the uniforms of the different volunteer companies, were to be seen making their way towards Queens Wharf. The arrival of Colonel Reader was the signal to embark on board the “Rangatira.”

The weather looked threatening, a fine drizzling rain was coming up from the North-West. As the “Rangatira” approached Pito-one, the usual Hutt vans, and other vehicles, laden with passengers, began to roll along the beach.

The “Rangatira” passengers disembarked on the Pito-one beach, and a double line of volunteers was formed between the old chief's house and the cemetery (Te Puni Street).

A firing party was then told off from the Hutt Rifles. After the coffin was brought out and placed in the hearse, the following gentlemen ranged themselves as pall bearers:—The Hon. Donald McLean (Native Minister); the Hon. Mr. Fitzherbert; Messrs. Ludlam, Hunter, Lyon, J. C. Crawford and George Crawford. These were followed by Henare Te Puni*, Ngapaki Te Puni, the deceased's sons; Mohi Puketapu, Taniore Te Harawira and Karaka.

The volunteers reversed arms, and the bands played the “Dead March in Saul.” The procession then formed and moved off in this order:—Mounted Police; No. 1 Hutt Rifles; the amalgamated Bands; the carriage of the Bishop of Wellington; the Venerable Archdeacon Stock; the the Revs. Fancourt and Paterson, walking; the Hearse and Pall Bearers; Maori Mourners; Old Colonists ranged in the order of their arrival in the Colony. The carriages of His Honour the Judge, and Colonel Harrington; the Veterans; No. 1 Rifles and other volunteers, followed by vehicles and followers on foot. On reaching the grave, the funeral service was read in Maori by the Bishop of Wellington. The Native Minister (The Hon. Donald McLean), then addressed the native mourners in their own language. The following is a translation:—“Ngatiawa and the people of the other tribes now present,—The Europeans whom you see assembled have come to pay the last tribute of respect to their old and well tried friend, Honiana Te Puni. He was among the first who welcomed the Europeans to these shores, and has been their firm and well tried friend ever since.

“Rangikitua, Wharepouri and other chiefs also welcomed the Pakeha. They have passed away, but Te Puni, until now, and throughout his long career, gave constant proof of his regard for the strangers whom he first welcomed.

* Henare and Ngapaki Te Puni were gathered to their fathers during the course of time, and Henare's two surviving children, Honiana and Mary, lived for many years in a house, covered by a shingle roof, situated at the junction of the Hutt Road and Petone Esplanade. This house has recently been absorbed by Odlin's timber yard. Honiana was wounded during the late war and returned to Petone, where he died in 1926. Mary Te Puni, who is now the sole surviving descendant, on the male line, of the old chief, whose proper name, Mary says, is Te Whiti, lives in her new home, corner of Te Puni Street and the Esplanade, adjoining the Maori Cemetery.

page 174

“Many old settlers have come here to-day to show their great regard for your chief. He has gone in peace to his long rest, but it is hoped his actions and good conduct will not die with him. His thoughts will live after he has passed away, and will, it is hoped, be treasured up by his tribe and descendants. I am sure it is most gratifying to all the Europeans, as well as to the natives and friends of Te Puni, to witness the cordial good will that accompanies him to his grave, and this is owing to his freedom from faults and to his numerous good deeds gratefully remembered by his friends the Europeans.”

Three volleys were fired over the grave, when the procession broke up. The volunteers marched off to Host Valentine's, where refreshments had been provided for them. Each one wended his way from the grave as best suited him. The Hon. Defence Minister, the Hon. Mr. Sewell, His Honour the Judge, the Hon. Mr. Fitzherbert. Colonel Reader and many others journeyed to the Hutt.

The Volunteers comprised the following:—No. 1 Company, W.R.V., two officers and twenty-six men; Artillery, three officers and thirty-seven men; Veterans, three officers and forty-two men; No. 1 H.R.V., three officers and forty-two men; No. 2 H.R.V., two officers and forty-two men; Taita R.V., three officers and thirty-six men; Field Officers, Lieut.-Colonel Reader, Major McBarnett, and Major Ludlam; Mounted Officers, Captain Pearce, Capt. and Adjutant Humphrey, and Staff Sergeant Major Nelly. Between five and six hundred people were present.

There are but few left who were
Fig. 54—Te Puni. From an oil painting by Mr. C. D. Barraud.

Fig. 54—Te Puni. From an oil painting by Mr. C. D. Barraud.

Fig. 55—Mary Te Puni, grand-daughter of Te Puni. The only surviving descendant in the male line.

Fig. 55—Mary Te Puni, grand-daughter of Te Puni. The only surviving descendant in the male line.

page 175 present, or took part in the proceedings* and can recall the events recorded above. To those the following lines of Moore's must appear applicable:—

“When I remember all
The friends so linked together
I've seen around me fall
Like leaves in wintry weather,
I feel like one
Who treads alone
Some banquet-hall deserted,
Whose lights are fled,
Whose garlands dead,
And all but he departed.”

Reference has been made, in the earlier portion of this chapter, to a knot of people who, in 1840, comprised hundreds of natives with tattooed faces, including Te Puni, their chief, who were anxiously awaiting the arrival of six pioneer vessels from afar off.

On the 24th March, 1928, eighty years after, hundreds of white people, but no natives were standing near the same spot welcoming the arrival of the crews of six racing skiffs (the Olympic eights).

That afternoon the writer called on Mary Te Puni with some photographs of Barraud's oil paintings of her grandfather, of the silver cup presented to him by the English in 1846, and of his monument. These were given to Mary as a slight token of remembrance, by the son of the great Native Minister who, by his wisdom and tact, patience and insight into the native character, had earned the respect of, and had endeared himself to
Fig. 56—Te Puni's Monument, Te Puni Street, Petone (near the beach and site of the old Pa).

Fig. 56—Te Puni's Monument, Te Puni Street, Petone (near the beach and site of the old Pa).

Fig. 57.—Cup presented to Te Puni in 1846 by Alexander Currie, a member of the N.Z. Coy., on behalf of the English people. (Photos by E. T. Robson). Figs. 54 to 57 by courtesy Sir Douglas Maclean.

Fig. 57.—Cup presented to Te Puni in 1846 by Alexander Currie, a member of the N.Z. Coy., on behalf of the English people. (Photos by E. T. Robson). Figs. 54 to 57 by courtesy Sir Douglas Maclean.

* Mr. J. Collett, Hutt Road, Petone, who was a drummer in one of the bands, well remembers the occasion.

page 176 the Maori race during the troublous times of the Maori Wars, and who had addressed the native mourners in Maori at their chief's funeral fifty-eight years ago.

A Pakeha Maori's Lament.

(Extracts from “Old New Zealand,” by Judge Manning.)

“Ah! those good old times when first I came to New Zealand, we shall never see their like again.…

“A dull sort of world this now. Pigs and potatoes have degenerated, and everything seems flat, stale and unprofitable. But those were the ‘good old times’—before Governors were invented, and law and justice and all that; when everyone did as he liked, except when his neighbours would not let him—the more shame for them; when there were no taxes, or duties, or public works, or public to require them. Who cared whether he owned a coat, or believed in shoes or stockings? The men were bigger and stouter in those days, and the women—Ah! Money was useless and might go a-begging. A sovereign was of no use, except to make a hole in and hang it on a child's ear. The few I brought went that way, and I have seen them swapped for shillings, which were thought more becoming. What cared I? A fishhook was worth a dozen of them, and I had lots of fish-hooks.

“Little did I think in those days that I should ever see here, towns and villages, banks and insurance offices, Prime Ministers and Bishops, and hear sermons preached and see men hung, and all the other plagues of civilisation.”

“O! where are those good old times? And echo, or some young Maori whelp answers from behind a bush, ‘No hea.’”