HC Deb 19 June 1845 vol 81 cc853-968
Mr. Edward Ellice (Coventry)

said: My hon. Friend the Member for Guildford has been kind enough to permit me to take precedence of him in this debate. I am anxious to do so both for my own convenience, and also in order that at this stage of the discussion I may endeavour to extract from Her Majesty's Government some distinct statement as to their future policy on this subject. We have had the whole question brought before us by my hon. and learned Friend the Member for Liskeard (Mr. Charles Buller) in a speech characterized by more than his usual vigour of development. He opened to the House the very complicated and difficult case on the part of the New Zealand Company. That speech was followed by the Under Secretary for the Colonies, denying the imputations cast upon the Department of which he is a member, in the course of that statement. That was followed by various speeches from hon. Gentlemen; by the hon. Baronet the Member for the University of Oxford, who addressed the House, in reply to certain attacks made by my hon. and learned Friend (Mr. Buller) upon the missionaries in the New Zealand Islands; by the hon. and gallant Member for Westminster, who denied (in a tone and temper which, while disagreeing with many of his statements, I greatly admired) the charges made against the conduct of his absent and gallant Friend Captain Fitzroy. But the gallant Captain, in the course of his speech, having made another attack on the conduct of the New Zealand Company, that was followed by another defence. Then followed the speech of the hon. Member for Liverpool, stating his opinion as to what ought to have been the conduct of the Government on the original formation of this Settlement. But, Sir, it will be obvious to the House that all these speeches had reference more to the past conduct of the different parties implicated, than any tendency to enlighten this House with respect to the policy hereafter intended to be pursued upon this great and important matter. I shall consume but little of the time of the House by going back again into any of the details which have been so much discussed before. But with respect to the past, I think I may state that in the course of pretty nearly forty years' experience of the Colonial Administration of this Empire, I have never seen a case in which there appears to me to have been, since the commencement of these transactions, so little foresight, so little system, so little common sense, as that displayed by the Colonial Government in the case of New Zealand. I was one of an association of gentlemen invited by my lamented Friend Lord Durham to consider the expediency of opening a communication with the islands of New Zealand. Application was made to the Crown for protection to that undertaking. I met on one occasion only the gentlemen who had so associated together, and I subscribed my share of money necessary for the undertaking; but having ascertained that it was impossible to obtain protection from the Government—even a Charter of Justice—I withdrew immediately from the undertaking, not desiring to be responsible for carrying into a remote wilderness, without any protection and control of law, settlers from this country, who, under the circumstances, would have had neither security for property or person. I have had no transaction with the New Zealand Company further than as having received back (what I never expected) the money advanced on the first undertaking. Beyond that I know nothing of its concerns or of its deliberations. I agree with my noble Friend (Lord Howick) who addressed the House last night, in thinking that it would be impossible to concur in the Resolution of this House, approving of the first expedition of settlers to New Zealand under the protection of the New Zealand Company. I think it was wrong, both in those who sent these people to the New Zealand islands, and in the Government having permitted them to go there, to found a settlement in a savage country, without either the protection or the control of the law. But having said that, I, with my noble Friend, am equally satisfied that the New Zealand Company have rendered a great and important service to the interests of this country. Without their interposition, without their industry, and without their energy, this Colony would undoubtedly have been lost to this country. It was one of those cases in which the pressure from without has promoted the public interests, when the Government are rightly slow to determine and slow to act—because always bound to act with caution and circumspection. But there we are! The Company have sent out emigrants to New Zealand. We have done various acts relative to the government of that country; and I think it was the duty of the authorities, as soon as they had decided on recognising the settlement of those islands, to have taken measures to render that settlement as little irksome to the natives and as advantageous to the emigrants from this country as possible. But what has followed? It is impossible to describe the want of system and of foresight which has characterized the whole of these proceedings. Instead of the Government doing its utmost to reconcile these three conflicting parties in that country—for there are three parties—the New Zealand Company, the missionaries, and the natives — instead of seeking to reconcile these parties, it has been throughout, as it appears to me, the policy of the Government, and of its authorities in the Colony, to set them one against the other; to array the New Zealand Company against the missionaries, and the missionaries against the Company, and the natives against both. Thus the Government has added to the confusion and complication in which the affairs of New Zealand were involved, and has done everything in its power to defeat the ends and object of this great measure of colonization. With respect to the important question of the right of property in the land of these islands, really, while listening to the discussions that have taken place on the subject, one felt a doubt whether he was sitting in an assembly of reasonable gentlemen. The various points, of what estates belonged to the chiefs, what to their savage dependants, and what to missionaries, former settlers, and these companies, purchased from them for the consideration of a little rum and tobacco, fire-arms and Jews' harps, have been gravely mooted to us. Why has not the policy adopted on all similar occasions by civilized states taking possession of new countries for the purposes of colonization and settlement—followed in every case of cession or conquest of old Colonies, in the cases of Canada, the French, Spanish, and Dutch West Indian and other Colonies — been acted on in this? In all these cases, land actually in possession, and in the use and enjoyment either of aborigines or settlers, has been secured to them on the titles on which they previously possessed it, or has been confirmed to them by new titles; and the waste and vacant land has become the property of the Crown. The principle may have been applied under various qualifications and modifications necessary in each peculiar case, but it has been the univeral rule of civilized nations. Is it not, in fact, according to reason and common sense, and to every analogy, the principle implied, if not directly expressed, in this famous Treaty of Waitangi? But supposing a different construction to be placed on it by the casuists of the Colonial Office, and their fit representatives in New Zealand, they are bound to give us an explicit statement of their version of the Treaty, and as soon as possible to correct the blunders and to clear away the doubts in which their negotiators have involved it. The hon. Member for the University of Oxford has defended with his usual ability and authority the case of the missionaries, vindicating, as became his Christian feelings and character, the conduct they had pursued in these islands. I believe them to have been eminently useful in their calling, and to have acted since their first establishment among the islanders with zeal and efficiency in promotion of the doctrines of their creed. At the same time they ought to have kept clear of the imputations on their disinterestedness, and abstinence from mere worldly considerations, which have been cast upon them in this debate, and the transactions with the natives which have involved them in disputes relative to claims and titles to land. But, in dealing with this case, the obvious policy would have been to have made such fair compromises with all parties having acquired titles before the Treaty as might have satisfied the justice of the case; repudiating immoderate claims on the one hand, and either allowing the purchasers to take a reasonable portion of their purchases, or giving them compensation for it in lands more conveniently situated for the general benefit of the Colony; on the other, limiting the grants according to the means of the parties, for their settlement and improvement. I give no opinion as to the extent to which this ought to have been done; but a prudent and intelligent Governor, if the discretion had been given to him, would have had no difficulty in reconciling a reasonable arrangement on the subject to the general feeling of the settlers, which would not have supported the pretensions of speculators, known under the name of "land-sharks," in all newly settled countries. Every such grant, when determined upon, should have been confirmed by a deed from the Crown, to put an end for ever to what are called in America "Indian titles," and, I suppose, by some analogous name in New Zealand. This is what you must come to at last. The only question seems to be, whether you will do it directly and honestly, or through the persecuting machinery of your Land Commissioners' Office on the one hand, and some further and disgraceful extinction of the disputed claims of the poor savages under a doubtul construction of the articles of your Treaty on the other? Whatever construction you put on the Treaty, the result must be the same. The natives can only retain what is required for their use and enjoyment, and that should be most liberally conceded and secured to them. The remainder must be brought under the dominion of civilized man. Why not declare this openly, as the course equally dictated by justice and by policy, and for the quiet and advantage of both parties? Must you wait till, to repair and supply the faults and omissions in your Treaty, you go through the farce of a solemn negotiation with the natives for the purchase of all land not described as reserved to them, in consideration of another supply of tobacco, blankets, and Jews' harps? What was ceded to the Crown with the sovereignty of these islands? My noble Friend the Member for the city of London has rightly construed the Sovereignty to include, as in all other cases, land not occupied for use and enjoyment. What portion of the 50,000,000 or 60,000,000 of available acres said to be in this country are in the use and enjoyment, or are necessary for the use and enjoyment of 100,000 to 120,000 natives, not requiring territory for the purposes of the chase? We have an analogous case in Canada, where large Indian reserves were kept between the cultivated districts, and beyond them, but where no doubt ever existed with respect to the right of the Crown to dispose of the remainder or the land. The New Zealand Company appear to have suggested an excellent principle on this subject, with reference to the mere agricultural habits of the natives of these islands, securing to them a participation in the ultimate advantages of settlement and improvement. But, Sir, whatever is or ought to be the policy of this country on these points, the first question I entreat the right hon. Gentleman opposite to answer us, before we go on with this debate, is the construction put upon this Treaty, not according to the lights of the Colonial Office, or the pettifogging authorities in the Colony, but by Her Majesty's Government, and with reference to their future intentions? It is clear they put a different construction on it from that of my noble Friend the late Secretary for the Colonies. What are their qualifications of, and differences from that construction? What land do they think the natives—those deriving titles under them previous to the Treaty—or the Crown—relatively entitled to, in the whole soil of New Zealand? I mean, of course, on principle, not in detail. Are they really of opinion that it will be still necessary, under the provisions of the Treaty, to repair any omission with respect to the rights of the Crown to all waste land, by practising upon the ignorance of the natives, to obtain for delusory compensation, or by some equally base device, a further and more complete cession? The next question I ask is, what you intend to do with the New Zealand Company, and the settlers who have established themselves under their auspices? In what manner do you intend to quiet and satisfy their rights and expectations, both with respect to property and institutions? You cannot allow matters to remain in their present state, or subject to misunderstood and capricious instructions, and the execution of them by such men as you have hitherto entrusted with the administration of affairs in the Colony. Ruin will in that case fast follow the despair in which the last accounts left the colonists. With reference to the question of institutions, it will be well the House should be informed as to the legal authority under which the Colony is now governed and taxes raised in it. I have endeavoured in vain to ascertain this. There is no Act of Parliament relating directly to New Zealand. By the Acts of the 3rd and 4th of Victoria, power is given to the authorities in New South Wales for the government of what are called dependencies of the Colony. New Zealand was, I believe, formerly called one of these dependencies. But how has that character of dependency been altered by Captain Hobson's declaration of her Independence before these Acts, and by the Treaty of Waitangi subsequent to them? I throw out rather than insist upon these points, as interfering with an authority resting solely on the Acts I have referred to. My right hon. Friend (Sir James Graham) shakes his head, and says they are not responsible for the acts of a previous Administration. Sir, it is not so much with reference to who is to blame for the past, but to those who are responsible for the future, that I ask these questions? What are to be your future institutions? Our old habits and associations with respect to Colonial Government have been completely lost sight of subsequent to the Quebec Act. Since that time we have only learnt to maintain in conquered Colonies the French, Spanish, and Dutch institutions we found there, and to establish Penal Colonies, the administration of all of which has been conducted by Orders in Council, giving power to absolute authorities to levy taxes, and execute the laws in force, by Treaty, or sanctioned by the Colonial Office, without reference to popular control and opinion. Is it intended, as has heretofore been the case—for your Council is a mere mockery—to persevere in this system with your new Colony of New Zealand? It would be better, Sir, as far as the interests of this country are concerned, to allow the missionaries and the natives to reassume their divided empire. Much has been said of the conduct of Captain Fitzroy. I do not join in all the censure that has been cast upon that gallant Officer. It is true, that several of the acts of his Administration, especially with respect to his financial system, his issue of paper money, his remission of custom dues, and imposition of property taxes, are very unintelligible and strange, as emanating from a gentleman who, beyond his professional knowledge, had some experience on these subjects as a Member of this House; but the difficulties with which he was surrounded on all sides, and his published and reserved instructions irreconcilable with each other, preventing the possibility of a good understanding with the settlers and the Company, and his utter want of resources, must always be considered in reference to his share of responsibility in these transactions. Whatever blame may be justly imputable to him, it must be admitted that no other Governor could have succeeded under similar circumstances. His successor, were he an angel, will fail with the same instructions, and in attempting to carry on an absolute Administration under the direction of the Colonial Office. The reputation of Captain Grey, certainly points him out as a fit person to be the successor; but, again, the difficulty arises of his not having had the benefit of oral communication with the Government at home, after these discussions, and carrying out with him some settlement of the disputes between the Colonial Office and the New Zealand Company. What are you to do with the Company? Settle their claims on the principle of the reasonable compromise made with them by my noble Friend the Member for London? Reassure their colonists by indemnity for the past, rescuing them from the insolent and irritating aggression and interference with their affairs by your Colonial officials, and securing them from the violence and excited passions of the natives—the consequence of your weakness and inconsistency? With all its faults the New Zealand Company has done inestimable good. I do not agree with the hon. Member who gave us such promise, by his speech the other night, of future efficiency in this House (Mr. Barkly), that it would be expedient to purchase their rights and interest, and dissolve the Company. In the first place, that would be an expensive operation; in the next, it would deprive the country of a most useful agent in the further progress of a Colony which they have had the glory of founding. Without their interposition and energy, it would have been lost to us in the first instance; without their assistance and agency there may be much difficulty in the encouragement and direction of further emigration. But, for God's sake, tell them distinctly what you mean to do with them—what is to be their present and ultimate condition as landholders—what engagements they may make, with assurance of their being able to perform them, with persons now willing to join their settlements. Do not quarrel with them about prices of land or profits. No people embark in such speculations without a view to profit, or persevere in them after all hope of it is destroyed. Every encouragement ought to be given to them consistent with reason and right principle, for upon their co-operation mainly depends the future success of this great experiment. Where are you to find a substitute, if by perseverance in the same captious and irritating spirit which has hitherto marked your communications with them, you drive them to throw up their undertaking in despair? Before reverting to the subject of future institutions, I would endeavour to awaken my hon. Friend the Member for Montrose (Mr. Hume), to the commercial considerations connected with these transactions. There was some revenue in this infant Colony, and it might have been sustained if the measures of Captain Fitzroy, aided by the complete destruction of the industrial pursuits of the settlers, had not combined utterly to annihilate it. One of the greatest hardships imposed upon Captain Fitzroy, was sending him to maintain a host of hungry, and, in many instances, useless officials, with an inadequate exchequer. But the exchequer is now absolutely empty—the Colony is in debt for a large issue of paper, resorted to to supply former deficiencies, and without the means of raising a shilling for current expenditure. How do you propose to deal with this state of things? You may impose direct taxes on all your subjects, civilized and savage, as you please, but where are the means to pay them? The first revenue came from the capital of the first emigrants. Certainly, the profits from its employment, checked and destroyed as that employment has subsequently been by your quarrels and interferences, has hitherto yielded no sources of taxation. Are they likely immediately to improve? Do you expect that the sum asked for on this head in the Miscellaneous Estimates of this Session, will be adequate either to provide for the existing deficiency, or the service of the current year? The House should have before them an estimate on both heads in detail, so that, before voting money, we should know what price we have to pay for your past folly and its consequences. Then comes the military expenditure. You have announced that a regiment is on its way to the island. Take into calculation the extraordinary expenses connected with your military force now there and on its way, the ordnance for barracks and buildings, the Commissariat for supplies, the coast of your troops, the debt already incurred, and your civil establishment, and we shall be well off if the expense for this year comes within 100,000l. It is full time that my hon. Friend (Mr. Hume) should look to this new demand on our Exchequer. Now, Sir, to revert to the question of institutions. Do you intend to persevere in the system of governing New Zealand from the Colonial Office, or as a Penal Settlement? I am glad to see the right hon. Gentleman at the head of the Government in his place, [Sir Robert Peel had just come into the House,] and I repeat these questions to him. Do you intend to extend to these settlers the right of British subjects of taxing themselves, and of controlling the public expenditure? Are they to have municipal and representative institutions? Are you to continue your Administration under the powers granted by the 3rd and 4th of Victoria for the Government of New South Wales and its Dependencies, considering New Zealand one of these dependencies; or are you to bring in a Bill providing a separate Government for this new and independent Colony? The two cases most nearly resembling the establishment of our settlers in New Zealand, and brought under discussion in later times, are those of the wood-cutters, as they were called, in the Bay of Honduras, and of the proprietary Government of the Hudson's Bay Company. You left the wood-cutters in the Bay of Honduras to manage their own affairs, levy their own taxes, appoint their magistrates and executive officers, and conduct the administration of justice, for many years under the nominal control of the Governor of Jamaica, appointing merely a Superintendent to command the military protection you sent them, and to see that no measures were taken contrary to the general principles of your law and regulations respecting trade. Till questions arising from the state of slavery made interference on that point necessary, the administration was conducted satisfactory to the colonists and their connexions in this country, and without expense or trouble to the Government at home. Troubles occurred some years ago in the Hudson's Bay Territory. The Colonial Administration of that day, acting with discretion and temper, brought about a compromise of differences between rival parties, limited their interference to the arrangement, and confined in the hands of that Proprietary the self-government of their own affairs, and of the immense region over which their authority extends; and you have had no appeal since, either for legislative measures, or money, or military assistance to control the native tribes, and secure the lives and properties of your subjects in the country. And when I mention these two cases, and compare the instruments of local administration in the settlers in Honduras and Hudson's Bay with the higher class of emigrants who went to New Zealand under the auspices of the New Zealand Company, I can have no doubt that if you had acted on the same principle, and intrusted them with the management of the affairs of the infant Colony, you would have avoided the difficulties in which we are now placed. But how long is this absurd system to last? Until further reinforcements are required, beyond the regiment you are now sending to check the threatened outrages of the natives, to suppress resistance from your own subjects to a yoke rendered intolerable by petty tyranny and oppression? I do not know that I should even counsel them to submission under a continuance of the vexatious folly that has brought them and their fortunes to the brink of ruin. There is another point to which our attention should be directed. You are about to establish a great agricultural Colony, where trade and commerce will, in the first instance, be secondary considerations, except in as far as they are connected with the produce of the soil. You have admitted the natives to equal rights and privileges with your settlers, as landowners and subjects. Do you intend to transfer to New Zealand your whole code of laws relative to real estates, with the rights of primogeniture, and the various other incidents connected with it? Or do you intend, after the example of your American Colonies, to simplify this code, to make landed estate chattel property, with almost equally simple forms of conveyance? Depend upon it that a little foresight and consideration on this important subject, in the outset, will save you from much trouble and confusion in the sequel. My object in rising to address the House was principally to obtain more explicit and satisfactory information from the Government on the points to which I have adverted, than the New Zealand Company and their unfortunate settlers have been able to extract from them. If they will not give it to us we must endeavour to force it from them through the means of the Committee proposed by my hon. Friend. If something be not immediately done to repair past errors, and to restore confidence among the colonists, the case will become yearly more desperate, with additional applications for grants of public money, to enforce obedience to the capricious discretion of the Colonial Office. It is scarcely possible to speak with temper of the weak and inconsistent measures of that Department from the very outset of their transactions. The only lucid interval in their management appears to have been when my noble Friend the Member for the city of London held the seals. He dealt with this strange Treaty of Waitangi, and with the concerns of the New Zealand Company, according to the plain rules of common sense, making the best settlement on the whole which the circumstances of the case at the moment permitted, and with which the Company was perfectly satisfied. The Committee of this House concurred with him in opinion as to the prudence and expediency of the arrangement. All this confusion appears to have been created because the noble Lord, now Secretary for the Colonies, must differ from everybody, and quarrel with the decisions of calmer and more prudent men. Nobody values more than I do the high and chivalrous character, and the great talents of my noble Friend; but I must be excused for saying, that in this instance at least, he seems to have wanted the temper requisite to enable him, setting aside other men's conclusions, to have arrived at a reasonable one of his own. The tone of his correspondence, even of his latest letters, shows a spirit of irritation and controversy, unsuited to the successful execution of the arduous duties imposed upon him. It is no defence for indulgence in such a spirit that the letters from this ill-fated Company and their devoted settlers were written in a tone of soreness, rather to be accounted for by their disappointments, than justified by respect for the high authority to whom they were addressed. The right hon. Gentleman opposite has some knowledge of the forbearance with the appeals of interest, of prejudice, of disappointment, and even of passion, necessary in reconciling men to decisions contrary to their own views and feelings; and how often that forbearance is even successful in leading men to sounder opinions and conclusions. There is no difficulty, and less merit, in governing reasonable men. Of all offices under the Crown, the Colonial Office is the one requiring the greatest patience, moderation, and forbearance, in dealing with the various classes of men subject to its power. The duties of that Department are more onerous than those of any other, and require no aggravation from want of these essential qualifications. It is difficult to understand how one individual, however gifted, can cope with them. When my noble Friend the Member for London consulted me, before adding the labours of this Department to his other responsibilities in the late Government, I begged him to consider how far some change in the Department, or constitution of a board to assist in part of the duties, might not diminish the weight of the undertaking. I thought then, as I think now, that such a board might clear the way of the Secretary of State in legislative and judicial business, and in examining cases of complaint sent home from the Colonies, without interfering with, or in the least encroaching upon, the authority and free action of the Minister solely responsible for the policy and conduct of the Colonial Administration. But if cases like this of New Zealand are multiplied, and added to the business of the other Colonies, what Hercules can be found to undertake the labours of this Department? If the noble Lord had made use of, rather than made war upon, the New Zealand Company, and if he had given explicit instructions to Captain Fitzroy to carry into full effect, as they expected, the agreement between his predecessor and the Directors, he might have saved himself from this additional embarrassment. Sir, I shall vote for the Committee proposed by my hon. Friend, without pledging myself to the Resolutions of which he has given notice, if he should carry his Motion. My object in doing so will be rather to prevent further mischief, and to enter into the consideration of what may be for the future welfare and benefit of the Colony, than to prolong a discussion on the miserable and wretched policy which has brought its affairs to the present crisis. I see an hon. Gentleman, the Secretary to the Treasury, prepared to follow me in the debate, with the intention, I have no doubt, of entering into a defence of the Colonial Office, and the part taken by the friends of the Government in the Committee of last Session. I think the time of the House might be better employed in listening to the answers of the responsible Ministers of the Crown to the questions I have put to them, respecting the future intentions of the Government towards the settlers, the Company, and the Colony, and on the important matters of finance, institutions, and legislation. These are now the more material subjects for the consideration of this House; and I have no doubt that a deep sympathy in the misfortunes of our fellow countrymen, and an anxious desire to rescue them from the unnecessary and unmerited trials to which they have been exposed, will prevail with it in going into a Committee with my hon. Friend, for their redress and relief.

Mr. Cardwell

, although he could not acquiesce in the justice of the right hon. Gentleman's proposition to abstain from the defence of the Colonial Office, and of the noble Lord whose conduct had been so bitterly and, as he thought, so unjustly impugned, yet he was satisfied that the interests of our fellow countrymen, the settlers in New Zealand, and the destiny of those other subjects of the Crown, the aborigines, with whom our colonizing tendencies were throwing us into closer contact, constituted, in the eyes of the House, and of that people whom the House represented, the chief importance of this discussion. To those interests and to that destiny, he would, therefore, address his observations. But how were they to legislate for the future? Must they not of necesssity review the history of the past, and consider the posture of affairs at present? The noble Lord the Member for Sunderland (Lord Howick), in the Report of the Committee, stated with truth that the unsettled state of the land-claims was at the root of the whole difficulty. Now, he believed that all the claims for land had been settled, or were in course of amicable and speedy adjustment, with a single exception, and that exception was the claim of the New Zealand Company. The cases which had been settled amounted to several hundreds, and those which had presented any difficulty had been about one in every hundred. But the claim which could not be settled rested on a title, as was alleged, different from any other in the Colony; for whilst others rested on a confirmatory grant from the Crown, the New Zealand Company claimed an absolute and unconditional grant. That claim was based on the agreement made by the noble Lord (Lord John Russell) in the year 1840. To a great extent the Committee of last year confirmed the view taken by the Company: they engrafted upon it, in the 5th Resolution, a limitation or exception, to which the House would be enabled hereafter to assign its due importance. But he admitted that, to a great extent, the Report of the noble Lord and of the Committee supported and sustained the view of the Company. The noble Lord deduced his conclusions from certain principles of colonization for which he contended as the true ones, and to which he referred as laid down in a speech of Sir George Gipps. How far these principles might be rightly laid down, as applicable to countries which became the property of the Crown by virtue of discovery, it was not necessary for him now to inquire. If he showed, from past events, that such was not the mode in which the Crown acquired the sovereignty of New Zealand, and that to that Colony it was impossible those principles should apply, he destroyed the basis on which the Report was founded, and overturned the conclusions which it sought to establish. Now he held in his hand a letter of the 18th of March, 1840, addressed, by direction of the noble Lord the Member for the city of London, to the noble Lord the then Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs (Lord Palmerston), in which the claim of Great Britain to New Zealand was denied, and the sovereignty of those islands acknowledged:— In the preceding letter (Mr. Somes to Lord Palmerston, 7th November, 1839), the right of Great Britain to sovereignty over New Zealand is maintained on various grounds, which it is unnecessary for the purposes of this Paper to controvert, or even to notice. The answers which would be made by Foreign Nations to such a claim are two:—first, that the British Statute Book has, in the present century, in three distinct enactments, declared that New Zealand is not a part of the British dominions: and, secondly, that King William IV., made the most public, solemn, and authentic declaration which it was possible to make, that New Zealand was a substantive and independent State. …. If these solemn acts of the Parliament and of the King of Great Britain are not enough to show that the pretension made by this Company on behalf of Her Majesty is unfounded, it might still further be repelled by a minute narrative of all the relations between New Zealand and the adjacent British Colonies, and especially by the judicial decisions of the Superior Courts of those Colonies. It is presumed, however, that after the preceding statement, it would be superfluous to accumulate arguments of that nature, and the rather because they could not be intelligibly stated without entering into long and tedious details. After the candid manner in which the noble Lord the Member for Sunderland had admitted his share of the indiscretions which characterized our conduct in the early history of these proceedings—he did not state it by way of taunt, but it was a fact that when the noble Lord occupied the station now filled by his hon. Friend (Mr. Hope), with that knowledge to which the noble Lord had referred, that these New Zealand chiefs were in the habit of butchering their slaves that their heads might be preserved as curiosities in the cabinets of Europe—with that knowledge the Government of that day did formally recognise the sovereignty aud the independence of those very chiefs; and this acknowledgment was part of the inheritance which Lord Stanley had received from his predecessors. After this acknowledgment, we had sent a British Resident to New Zealand as to an independent nation. We gave them a flag; we fired a royal salute to it; we received an address claiming his late Majesty as the Protector of the Islands of New Zealand. Such were the facts of the case; and so were they recited in the letter addressed by direction of the noble Lord the Member for London, to his noble Colleague the Member for Tiverton, to be the guide and standard of his communication with the Powers of Europe. Next, he held a letter written on the 21st of May, 1839, by the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Taunton (Mr. Labouchere); and that letter, to say the least, was not inconsistent with Lord Stanley's views. Then, on the 22nd of June, 1839, there was a Treasury Minute, with a letter, that certain provisions being strictly complied with, Mr. Hobson might obtain a cession from the chiefs, and if he did obtain a cession, he was to assume the title of Lieutenant Governor of New Zealand:— My Lords deem it necessary to suggest that the annexation of any part of that territory to the Government of New South Wales, and the exercise of the powers it is intended to confide to the Governor and Council of New South Wales, or to the officer about to proceed to New Zealand in the capacity of Lieutenant Governor, or any assumption of authority beyond that attaching to a British Consulate, should be strictly contingent upon the indispensable preliminary of the territorial cession having been obtained by amicable negotiation with, and free concurrence of, the native chiefs. The Marquess of Normanby gave minute instructions as to the mode of proceeding for gaining possession of New Zealand; he said, on the 14th August, 1839— The acquisition of land by the Crown for the future settlement of British subjects must be confined to such districts as the natives could alienate without distress or inconvenience to themselves. The noble Lord the Member for Sunderland (Lord Howick) said, that these instructions were not sufficiently precise. That was not the fault found by the New Zealand Company; on the contrary, they said they— —"always looked on Lord Normanby's letter as based on a very anomalous contradictory theory;" they had been "familiarised with great and sudden changes in the policy of Her Majesty's Government with respect to New Zealand," and they "inferred that Lord John Russell had abandoned Lord Normanby's notions. And again in a recent letter— It is impossible to reconcile the missionary system with that of the Company. In every respect they go on opposite principles. …. The Treaty of Waitangi went on what we have called the missionary principle. Lord John Russell adopted what may be called the colonizing principle in his agreement and other proceedings with the Company. They had a right to conclude that the noble Lord (Lord J. Russell) departed from the hasty and impracticable views of Lord Normanby, and that he abandoned the missionary system. Why had they a right to conclude so? Because those views and that system were inconsistent with the agreement that he made with the Company. They were inconsistent with the construction which the Company put, and which the Company contend the noble Lord put, upon that agreement. Well, then, what became of that construction, if he should show that so far from departing from those views, the noble Lord reasserted them eo nomine: that so far from abandoning that system, he enjoined it as the first and most important of those measures which he laid down for the guidance of the Governor. What became of the favourable pre-eminence which the noble Lord the Member for Sunderland had ascribed to the noble Lord's Administration—of the lucid interval of which the right hon. Gentleman (Mr. Ellice) had spoken? He could show that the noble Lord the Member for London did repeat the instructions of Lord Normanby, using his very name. In writing to Captain Hobson on 9th December, 1840, he gave a long account of his views; he declared that the people had made some progress in the arts, that they had usages partaking of the character of prescription, that they had been recognised by Great Britain as an independent State, and that the acknowledged principle was, that our title rested on the deliberate cession by the chiefs on behalf of the people at large:— The aborigines of New Zealand will, I am convinced, be the objects of your constant solicitude, as certainly there is no subject connected with New Zealand which the Queen and every class of Her Majesty's subjects in this kingdom regard with more settled and earnest anxiety. …. Yet amongst the many barbarous tribes with which our extended Colonial Empire brings us into contact in different parts of the globe, there are none whose claims on the protection of the British Crown rest on grounds stronger than those of the New Zealanders. They are not mere wanderers over an extended surface in search of a precarious subsistence; nor tribes of hunters, or of herdsmen; but a people amongst whom the arts of government have made some progress; who have established by their own customs a division and appropriation of the soil; who are not without some measure of agricultural skill, and a certain subordination of ranks; with usages having the character and authority of law. In addition to this, they have been formally recognised by Great Britain as an independent State; and even in assuming the dominion of the country this principle was acknowledged, for it is on the deliberate act and cession of the chiefs, on behalf of the people at large, that our title rests. Nor should it ever be forgotten that large bodies of the New Zealanders have been instructed by the zeal of our missionaries in the Christian faith.…Indeed, the dread of exposing any part of the human race to a danger so formidable has been shown by the Marquess of Normanby, in his original instructions to you, to have been the motive which dissuaded the occupation of New Zealand by the British Government, until the irresistible course of events had rendered the establishment of a legitimate authority there indispensable. Amongst the practical measures which you can adopt or encourage for the protection of the aborigines, the most important are the support of the missions and the missionaries. He then went into a long description of what had been done by "the" missionaries who had got the Treaty signed for us, and thanked them for the acts by which our title was obtained. He added, in another part of the same letter, that— The sale and settlement of waste lands are the next of the general topics to which I propose to advert in this despatch. The Marquess of Normanby has anticipated and provided for the great and peculiar difficulty by which the regular colonization of New Zealand was impeded. I refer, of course, to the large claims advanced by persons in virtue of contracts or grants said to have been made by the native chiefs. In my present want of information as to the measures which may have been taken to give effect to his instructions, I can state merely that Her Majesty's Government perceive no reason for receding from them. On the 4th of March, 1840, the noble Lord directed another letter to Mr. J. Thompson, in which he said, that by a series of acts the sovereignty had been acknowledged by Great Britain, and that no Charter could be granted till Captain Hobson had obtained a cession:—

Downing Street, March 4, 1840. Sir—I am directed by Lord John Russell to acknowledge the receipt of your letter of the 26th ultimo, enclosing for his Lordship's consideration a prospectus of the proposed New Zealand Agricultural, Commercial and Banking Company, and inviting his Lordship's opinion of the extent to which the objects and intended operations of the Company are likely to meet with the sanction of Her Majesty's Government. I have his Lordship's directions to acquaint you, in reply, that as, by a series of Acts of Parliament, as well as by the measures formerly taken by the Executive Government in this country, the sovereignty of Great Britain over New Zealand is expressly disavowed, the Queen cannot be advised to grant any such Charter of Incorporation as that which you propose at present; nor can the expediency of issuing such a Charter at all be decided until Her Majesty's Government shall be in possession of a report from Captain Hobson of the result of the endeavours he has been instructed to make, to obtain a cession in sovereignty to the Queen, either of the whole of the islands of New Zealand, or of such parts of them as may be found best adapted for the formation of a British Colony. Then in chronological order came the Treaty of Waitangi, dated the 6th of February, 1840; and he must remind the House, that by the First Article it secured to the natives the forests and fisheries which they individually or collectively possessed, and that by the Second the right of pre-emption was given to the Crown. Now it was evident that the guarantee in the First Article was correlative to the right of pre-emption in the Second. Whatever it was to which the right of pre-emption extended, that was also the subject matter of the guarantee. And what was the right of pre-emption? Not the right of buying lands actually enjoyed and occupied; for those lands the natives were expressly prohibited to sell. It was, then, other lands than those in actual occupation and enjoyment; and, by necessary force of consequence, to lands other than those in actual occupation and enjoyment, must the guarantee be deemed to extend. But the noble Lord the Member for Sunderland had said it was impossible the noble Lord (Lord John Russell) or Sir George Gipps could have understood it in that sense. With great submission, he contended it was impossible that either the one or the other could have understood it otherwise. It was through Sir George Gipps that Captain Hobson transmitted to the noble Lord the Treaty itself, and the description of that remarkable debate at the conclusion of which the Treaty was signed. In that debate, the taking of land was, from the beginning to the end, the subject of discussion. Revewah said— Send the men away: do not sign the paper; if you do, you will be reduced to the condition of slaves, and be obliged to break stones for the roads. Your land will be taken from you, and your dignity as chiefs will be destroyed. And then Neni, than whose appearance Captain Hobson said nothing could have been more seasonable, answered— You must be our father. You must not allow us to become slaves. You must preserve our customs, and never permit our lands to be wrested from us. And it was not until Mr. Williams had satisfied them that the land would not be taken, that the Treaty was signed. Whether that Treaty was wise or unwise—whether it was or was not part of a "series of injudicious proceedings" — on that Treaty our title to New Zealand had been rested. These were the circumstances under which the Treaty was signed, as communicated by Captain Hobson to the noble Lord through Sir George Gipps; and he said it was not fair to them to say they did not understand it in that sense. But was there no direct evidence of the sense in which they understood it? In October, 1840, Sir George Gipps had occasion to communicate his opinions to Dr. Evans and two other gentlemen, who went over to Sydney as deputies from this very settlement of Port Nicholson. And these were the words of Sir George Gipps:— Should any question arise as to the extinction of the native title to the lands comprehended within the settlement of 110,000 acres, the same principles must be applied to the solution of them. The Government has hitherto assumed, and is still willing to assume, that the native title has been fairly extinguished; but the Government must reserve to itself the right of inquiring into and redressing any injury that may be proved to have been committed; and this is the more necessary, as the Government was in no way a party in the purchase of their lands, and as His Excellency is not even, at the present moment, informed what has been paid for them. Sir George Gipps appointed Commissioners expressly to make inquiries into the title and claims to land; and what were the instructions given by the noble Lord to Sir George Gipps? The other side had been so bold as to represent the noble Lord as making two inconsistent agreements within a short period of each other. The celebrated agreement was signed on the 18th November, and on the 21st November, the noble Lord wrote as follows to Sir George Gipps:— I have received your despatch of the 29th of May last, transmitting a copy of the address with which you opened the Session of the Legislative Council of New South Wales, and in which you stated that a Bill, to empower the Governor of New South Wales to appoint Commissioners to examine and report on claims to grants of land in New Zealand, would be proposed for the consideration of that body. I transmit to you, herewith, copies of a correspondence which has passed between this Department and the gentlemen associated under the name of the 'New Zealand Company,' with regard to the rights which may have been acquired by the Company, and the terms on which their corporate existence would be sanctioned by Her Majesty's Government. You will defer the execution of any powers that may be given to you by the Bill above alluded to, should it pass into a law, until you shall receive further instructions from me on the subject. And then he added this remarkable sentence— You will understand, however, that it is not my intention to abandon the plan of instituting a Commission to inquire into the titles or claims to land in New Zealand; but that, on the contrary, I fully intend to carry it into execution; and that I write the present instructions in order that means may be taken for executing it with the greater accuracy, as well as acknowledged impartiality. For this purpose, I shall probably find it necessary to send out a Commissioner from this country. There was, therefore, no alteration in the intention of the noble Lord, excepting that he intended to send out a Commissioner. How did the noble Lord understand the agreement? Could any one who had read those documents, have any doubt as to the construction which the noble Lord put upon the agreement? A Mr. Beecham wrote to the noble Lord for his view, who, in reply, stated (before the agreement) that the Government had never recognised the New Zealand Company, nor acknowledged the validity of their title to any land in New Zealand; but, on the contrary, had instructed the Governor of New South Wales and Captain Hobson to take the necessary measures for ascertaining the validity of any titles set up by any British subjects. Was it to be assumed that the noble Lord in November bound the Government by a contract with the Company absolutely incompatible with the contract he made with other parties but a few months before? But how did the natives understand it? They were a poetical people; and they adopted this illustration in the conference in which they resolved to sign the Treaty:— The shadow of the land goes to Queen Victoria, but the substance remains with us. Captain Hobson, writing to Sir George Gipps, on May the 5th, 1840, thus described one of the difficulties he expected to encounter:— A report prevails that a conspiracy against the Government and military exists among many of the chiefs. I will have the parties watched. If there is any truth in it, it may be ascribed to the mischievous stories circulated by low and abandoned Europeans, who try to persuade the natives that we only wait until we are strong enough, to take possession of all the land, and sell it, irrespective of the native claims. Such were the apprehensions of Captain Hobson; and such, even at that early period, were the causes from which he feared that that great evil, the war between the races, might eventually be found to spring. But to come to the agreement itself. The Company, in one of their letters to Lord Stanley, claimed to be judged by the "four corners" of that agreement. Now, if this were the proper occasion, he would be ready to meet them on that issue. He would not fear to meet his hon. and learned Friend (Mr. Buller),—if he might be permitted to call him by that title—before any Equity Judge in England, and discuss with him the strict effect and legal bearing of that document. He would begin with the first Clause— It being understood that the Company have invested large sums of money in the purchase of lands in New Zealand from native chiefs and others;"— and he would contend that that was the understanding throughout — the understanding on which the whole agreement rested. Next, he would advert to the condition requiring the Company to take their lands in that particular district; and he would contend that that condition was imposed, because there, and there alone, did the Crown assume the possession of any lands to give them. Except for this reason, it did not matter one farthing to the Colonial Office in what district the lands might be selected. He should then pass to the 11th Clause, in which they "forego all title to any lands other than those to be granted them by the Crown;" and he would urge that exception as conclusive, to show that to that part they did not forego their former title. They disclaimed the larger district; they made a special exception of that which they did not disclaim. The Company called Lord Stanley's construction "a flagrant wrong;" but no other construction was put upon it for nearly two years, when a very special and cogent reason made it convenient to displace it. On the 2nd of December, 1840 (a few days after the agreement), what said the Colonial Office? Why, that— With regard to lands acquired by any other title than by grants from the Crown, it was proposed to subject the titles to inquiry by a Commissioner. The noble Lord the Member for London was not aware then of the construction which the Company had put upon it. They addressed a report to their shareholders, in which the following passage occurred:— They had been put, in regard to their previous purchases, on precisely the same footing as any private individual. And that could have but one reference; it could not relate to the points in which a preference was given to the Company as a useful instrument for colonization, in not limiting them to a maximum of acres to be obtained, nor recognising merely the amount spent in the purchase of land. But if they were on the same footing, what a mockery it was to say so, when they omitted the only part of the case in which they were in reality upon the same footing. It was true they were on the same footing as to the 5s. an acre being the price to be calculated. But how was it to be calculated? All the settlers were to have exactly the same quantity which they had paid for at the rate of 5s. an acre. They were, however, all limited to a maximum of acres, which they could not exceed. But the New Zealand Company were to have an unlimited number—a number coextensive with the gross amount of their expenditure. The terms, therefore, were as different as possible. One point—the main and vital point—there was, as he contended, in which they were upon an equal footing, and that point was the point of title. Well; but how was this question understood at the time? The noble Lord appointed his Commissioner. The hon. Member for Cockermouth last night had spoken of this Commissioner as unfriendly to the Company. If he was unfriendly, what influences could have operated on his mind? He was appointed by the noble Lord when that noble Lord was full of all those generous impressions towards the Company, to which so large a meed of praise had been attributed. The noble Lord had particularly good means of ascertaining the fitness of Mr. Spain; and the noble Lord, animated by these liberal feelings towards the Company, had given his instructions to Mr. Spain, he presumed in personal conference, for no written instructions had appeared. With these, Mr. Spain must have left this country with feelings derived from the noble Lord; and if he had become unfriendly, what sort of evidence must have addressed itself to his mind when he reached the Colony? What an estimate must he have formed of the state and proceedings of the Company! But, at all events, Mr. Spain went to New Zealand; and he understood in the same way as Lord Stanley the meaning of the Treaty and agreement, and the nature of the duties he was appointed to discharge. Was he alone in that? Colonel Wakefield, who was called by the natives "Wide-awake"—he did not say it to his disparagement—was not likely to fall into a mistake; and he wrote, on August 24, 1841— It is presumed that the Company has acquired a valid title from the natives to a very large territory on both sides of Cook's Strait, to which they lay claim, and to which their settlements are to be confined; a Commission is to decide on the validity of the presumed purchases from the natives by the Company. Provided always, that if any part of the said lands shall, upon due inquiry, be found not to have been validly purchased from them before the date of the alleged purchase by the Company, full compensation shall be made to the natives, or the previous purchaser, as the case may be, by the Company. About this time also a letter was written by the Secretary of the Company to the Colonial Office on other business (September 18, 1841), and he had occasion to mention the subject of title, and spoke of the land to which Mr. Pennington's award declared the Company to be, not absolutely and unconditionally, but contingently entitled. But shortly after that, there came home a letter from Colonel Wakefield to the Directors, stating that he was proceeding with his investigation before Mr. Spain; that he saw no reason to doubt of his success; that some matters had occurred requiring compensation; that he asked authority to make it. The Directors approved of this, and placed in his hands a sum of money, which they described as considerable, and a quantity of land. Then the construction of Lord Stanley was accepted both in New Zealand and by the Company here. On the 10th of June, in the same year, in communicating with the Colonial Office, they said that certain obstacles had arisen, which they did not think would be of magnitude, and they expressed their thanks for the generous spirit which had actuated the instructions given by Lord Stanley; the House had now been told that liberality was exchanged for pertinacity when that noble Lord went to the Colonial Office, and the "lucid interval" ceased. It was in October, 1842, that the construction for which the Company now contended was brought for the first time before the notice of Lord Stanley. And under what circumstances? After the Directors had received from Colonel Wakefield the intelligence that he had admitted the legality of Mr. Spain's Court—that he had opened his case before Mr. Spain on the assumption that he was to prove his title—that he had encountered difficulties of evidence which he did not expect, and had then, and not till then, retired from the Court, protesting against its jurisdiction—it was on the receipt of this intelligence that he Company, for the first time, claimed of Lord Stanley an absolute unconditional title. But, if further explanation were necessary, Colonel Wakefield furnished that explanation; for when the Company informed him of the claim which they had made, he thus acknowledged the intelligence:— No circumstance has occurred since the commencement of all the operations of the Company so satisfactory to me as the remonstrance made by the Directors to Lord Stanley against the proceedings of the Commissioner of Land Claims, with respect to the Company's titles… The Court is not ignorant of the duties which devolved upon me in the early days of the Company's existence; of the necessity of acquiring a territory on which to locate the emigrants destined to follow me from England with so little delay, without the sanction, if not in direct opposition to the wishes, of the Government: of the difficulty in obtaining, in a limited period, a clear and indefeasible title to sufficient land to enable the Company to meet its engagements, in a country where such confusion as to proprietorship existed as I found here … I was not unaware of the implied understanding upon which the agreement was founded, that the title to the territory to which the Company's operations were restricted was to be the subject of investigation by a Crown Commissioner; and in this opinion I was confirmed by the despatch in which you, in putting a sum of money at my disposal for the purchase of the pahs and cultivations in this settlement, seem to contemplate the necessity of the extinguishment of native titles by the Company. The announcement of the intention of the Directors to claim the fulfilment of the agreement, and the extinction of native claims, holds out a hope, not lately entertained by the most sanguine well-wishers of the Company, of carrying out the large views of the Directors, by obtaining ample profits for its shareholders during the continuance of its Charter, and of the complete success of its settlements, and the realisation of the hopes which have hrought so many British subjects under its auspices to these shores. … It will render the hitherto nominal possessions of the preliminary sectionists, selected in many instances by a late arrangement in considerable blocks, valuable estates, on which civilization will advance with rapid strides, and will, by gentle and authorized compulsion, save the aborigines, in spite of themselves, from the destruction which has overtaken all savage tribes who have lived at enmity with foreign settlers on their land. It has been said, that the Colonial Office had not treated the Company with the respect they thought themselves entitled to. He was sorry and surprised when he heard the hon. and learned Gentleman make that statement. The Company made a demand which was thought to imply an invasion of the rights of others. But Lord Stanley made that offer which he felt bound by the circumstances to make; and by way of answering the accusations made against the noble Lord, he would read his Lordship's letter on receiving at the close of the year 1842 the new demand of the Company:— The Company stated on the face of the agreement that they had 'invested large sums of money in the purchase of land in New Zealand from the native chiefs and others;' and of the lands so alleged to be purchased they asked to be permitted to receive, and were promised that they should receive, a grant from Her Majesty of a specified amount, in consideration of which they surrendered to Her Majesty all title or pretence of title to the larger amount, the native claims to which they alleged themselves to have extinguished by purchase. Lord Stanley cannot now permit it to be maintained either that the natives had no proprietary rights, in the face of the Company's declaration that they had purchased those very rights, or that it is the duty of the Crown either to extinguish those rights or to set them aside in favour of the Company. The fact of the validity or the invalidity of the purchase was known to the Company, and to them alone; the assumed validity was the basis of the promised grant; and, if the facts were incorrectly stated at the time, or were incapable of proof, with the Company must rest the inconvenience and loss resulting from their own mis-statements. Nor can Lord Stanley allow the assertion that the Company's title was to be investigated exclusively by Mr. Pennington. That gentleman had, in fact, nothing to do with the title to any one acre of land. He is an accountant residing in London, to whom was delegated the single task of ascertaining the total amount of money which had been expended by the Company, and the consequent proportion of land which they were to be allowed to receive out of the 20,000,000 of acres to which they laid claim. Mr. Pennington's award could only declare that, at the rate of 5s. per acre, the previous expenditure by the Company was equivalent to a given number of acres; and the Company were authorized to select that number out of those to which, by the hypothesis, they had established a claim by the purchase of the native title. The grant by Her Majesty of any land must be taken to be conditional upon the fact asserted by the Company, that by their previous arrangements Her Majesty had it in fact to grant; and the investigation of that question had been committed by law, with which Lord Stanley cannot interfere, not to Mr. Pennington, but to a local and legally constituted tribunal. It is the duty of that tribunal not to suffer native rights which have been recognised by Her Majesty to be set aside in favour of any body of settlers, however powerful; and Her Majesty has neither the power nor the desire to influence their decisions. Much, therefore, as Lord Stanley regrets the inconveniences which have been experienced by settlers under the Company, he cannot admit that Her Majesty's Government is the party chargeable with having occasioned those inconveniences, nor that it can justly be called on to provide the remedy for them. It is not, however, Lord Stanley's wish to leave the question in this state. His Lordship is fully alive to the great inconvenience resulting to a large body of Her Majesty's subjects from the uncertainty now hanging over titles derived from the Company in the Wellington district. This inconvenience it is his wish to remedy, by whatever means he can, consistently with justice and good faith towards others. With this view before him, Lord Stanley has anxiously considered what course he can adopt. The Company, as he understands, declare that of their power (with few exceptions) to establish good titles to the lands in question they entertain no doubt, wherever it is possible to do so, and the case requires it. What they complain of is, being called upon to establish titles which no one disputes, and to show purchases of land of which no person could be proved to be entitled to act as vendor, much of the land claimed being, according to this view, in fact, 'waste;' and they propose that the Governor should be instructed to make grants to them of the lands selected by them, excepting only such lands as were at the date of the agreement in the 'actual occupation or enjoyment of the natives.' The probability that much of the lands may be 'waste,' as alleged, Lord Stanley sees no reason to doubt; and, so far as they may ultimately prove to be so, he is ready to put them at the disposal of the Company; he cannot, however, undertake, as proposed by you, either to override all prior titles except those of natives, or to define what constitutes a native title. On these subjects he cannot exclude inquiry on the spot; but, subject to the possibility of such inquiry, if called for, being anxious to go as far as his duty will permit, he would not object to a grant being made to the Company of a primâ facie title in the lands claimed. He would ask anybody who read that correspondence, and put a fair construction upon it, whether the sense which dictated that refusal was not one of an overruling sense of duty, and whether the whole spirit of the correspondence was not the spirit of one anxiously endeavouring to find a reason for granting as much as possible of that which was asked by the Company? The hon. and learned Member had said that if the Company's letters were not couched in the most courteous terms, still it would have been the part of a statesman to overlook such personal considerations in his regard for the welfare of Her Majesty's subjects committed to his government. Lord Stanley was the statesman whom the hon. and learned Member had described. After letters that might well have roused his indignation, and when the Company had peremptorily refused his terms, he still renewed his offer. In language hypothetically addressed to his predecessor, but substantially applying to himself, the phrases "cold-blooded fraud" and "utmost imaginable amount of wrong," had been not unsparingly applied. But, in his anxiety for the welfare of the Colony, the noble Lord had overlooked every other consideration, and had carried his concessions to the Company to the utmost length to which, in his view of the engagements of the Crown to others, good faith permitted him to go. He thought, then, that in the judgment of any hon. Member to whom the correspondence was familiar, he had disposed of the first charge made against Lord Stanley, viz., that he had repudiated Lord John Russell's agreement. He now came to the other charge, viz., that he had broken his own agreement, the agreement of 1843. And this, he confessed to hon. Members opposite, constituted the most plausible part of their case. It was said that those instructions were so varied, that they did not carry out the substance of the agreement between the Company and the Government. He thought that charge had been disposed of in the debate to which it had given rise in the earlier part of the Session. He did not mean to deny the constructive responsibility of Lord Stanley for the acts of the officer who served under him; but to impute to Lord Stanley that he was actuated by improper motives, because at the other end of the earth the instructions he had sent out were not expressly followed, was not consistent with either justice or candour. In the absence of Captain Fitzroy, and without those fuller explanations which, hitherto at least, had not been received from him, he should not think it consistent with his duty to enter at all upon that part of the case. But he did assert that full instructions had been given to that officer, and the utmost anxiety had been manifested by Lord Stanley to carry out in every particular the arrangement of 1843. Let the House consider the manner in which the New Zealand Company had been treated. They had an unlimited amount of land at their disposal; they found the time was too limited, and that the agreement was inconvenient, and Lord Stanley extended the time; they found the shape of the blocks inconvenient, and they were altered; they complained of the right of pre-emption, and Captain Hobson waved it. By stretching his power to the utmost, the noble Lord gave them, or designed to give them, the title they sought to obtain. He did not presume to say how much or how little the Company was to blame. His hon. Friends who served with him on the Committee of last year would do him the justice to remember, that no part of the Resolutions which he had the honour to propose reflected on the conduct of the Company. When the noble Lord the Member for Sunderland proposed the Resolution which stood in the Report, he had suggested its omission, urging that their business was practically for the future; that they had to do with the past only for the experience it afforded, and the warnings it might suggest; and the assigning blame to the Company was therefore unnecessary. But he thought he had said enough now to prove that the blame did not rest with Lord Stanley, and that every principle of justice called upon them to reject the present proposition. Well, then, if such was the case in respect of justice, how did it stand in respect of expediency? They were asked to go into a Committee of the whole House, for the purpose of considering Resolutions which the noble Lord who framed them said, would now, after six months' additional experience, not be applicable. If six months had rendered these inapplicable, they must still be six months behindhand in their intelligence from New Zealand if they went into Committee. Their Resolutions, if they agreed to any Resolutions, would be six months more in reaching the Colony. His hon. Friend who seconded the Motion had admitted the absurdity of fulminating abstract Resolutions at the distance of half the globe. If practical good were to be achieved for New Zealand, it must be by some other means, and not by a Committee of that House. On every ground, then, of justice and of expediency, with the greatest deference for the House, in all humility, but with the utmost earnestness, he implored them to reject the Motion.

Mr. Mangles

Sir, I promise the House, if they will favour me with a hearing, that I will confine myself strictly to a single branch of the large subject before us. It is not my intention to enter at all upon the general question of colonization, nor upon the wrongs which I believe that the New Zealand Company has suffered at the hands of the Colonial Office and the local Government. I propose to consider simply the policy of the Church Missionary Society and of the Government in relation to the aboriginal inhabitants of New Zealand, and the effects of that policy upon its immediate objects, in the first instance, and, through them, upon the British subjects who have emigrated to that Colony. I have advisedly placed the Church Missionary Society first, because it is the author of the policy which the Government have adopted; and I shall contrast that policy, in its principles and results, with what I believe to be the line of conduct which the British Government ought to have pursued when it took possession of New Zealand—a step the delay of which has occasioned great mischief. It is not, however, I trust, yet too late to redeem past errors, and to enter upon a course which would confer great and durable benefits upon all the parties concerned. I do not, therefore, speak for the thankless purpose of exposing irremediable evils. Indeed, I heartily wish that it were possible to discuss the subject of future policy without reference to the past. But that cannot be, because the Government is still apparently wedded to the opinions, the carrying out of which has caused so much and such fatal mischief; and because those from whom they adopted those opinions, have still, it would seem, as much influence as ever over the policy of the Colonial Office, in respect to the unhappy Colony whose affairs we are discussing. I speak, therefore, under the strong conviction that it is essential to the cause of truth, and to the welfare of every class of persons in New Zealand, but especially of the Aborigines, that the whole question of past mismanagement should be probed to the bottom. It is greatly to the honour of the Church Missionary Society that it has been engaged for thirty years in the noble work of conveying the glad tidings of Christianity to the aborigines of New Zealand. This good work, conceived in the spirit of the most disinterested charity, has been carried out with much energy, and has been blessed with great success. I have every reason to wish the Society Godspeed in this labour of love, because I have long been connected with it, and was for several years a member of the Committee which managed its extensive operations in Northern India. I mention this to show that I am not likely to drag that respected body unnecessarily before the House and the public, or to speak even of what I conceive to be its errors in a hostile or scoffing spirit. But the local missionaries and the Society at home are so much mixed up with the whole history of New Zealand; they have taken so decided a line in respect to what may be called, for brevity, the land question, and the general relations of the aborigines with the local Government and with the colonists; the Colonial Office and the local Government have so uniformity acted upon their views in relation to these matters; and these views are, in my judgment, to so great a degree the cause of all the mischief which has already befallen the Colony of New Zealand, whilst still worse mischief, from the same source, appears to be in store for the future, that it would be dishonest, as well as absurd, to leave the Church Missionary Society out of a discussion, for which, probably, without their interposition, occasion would never have been given. But whether the views of the Church Missionary Society be right or wrong, it is absolutely necessary, after all that has passed, and with so much danger in prospect, that they should be strictly examined. If the line of policy recommended by that Society in relation to the aborigines be wise and proper, let its views continue to govern the measures of Her Majesty's Government. If, on the other hand, as I am persuaded, that policy was conceived in error, has already generated great mischief, and is sure to lead to still more fatal results, let it be at once and for ever abandoned. I desire to examine this question in the most candid spirit; being convinced, not only that the inquiry is indispensable, but that the establishment of sound principles cannot fail to further those beneficent objects to which I know that the Church Missionary Society looks with a single eye. About the first steps taken by that Society there can be no difference of opinion among those who wish well to their fellow creatures. It sent its missionaries to New Zealand, and those devoted men entered upon their labours in the most populous part of those islands, at a time when the boldest seamen engaged in the South Sea Fisheries, and even the most desperate convicts escaped from the adjacent Penal Settlements, dreaded to approach shores inhabited by so savage and bloodthirsty a race. Several vessels had been cut off by the aborigines, and they in turn had been visited by the vengeance or wronged by the wanton cruelty of the white man. Mutual injuries had inflamed the passions of both parties. The missionaries boldly entered upon this dangerous field, with no protection but the moral panoply of their holy vocation, and the fatherly care of that Great Being in whose service they were engaged. Their courage and constancy were blessed with signal success; and it is not a little remarkable that the very extent of their peaceful triumphs occasioned the first check to their progress. Their precepts and examples humanized the ferocious aborigines, and thus rendered New Zealand a safe and tempting place of sojourn for fugitives and outcasts from the Australian Colonies, and for the equally lawless crews of the vessels which trade or whale among the islands of the South Seas. A few more respectable persons visited the scene of the missionaries' labours, principally on their way home from Sydney; and their reports of the beauty, fertility, and other natural advantages of New Zealand, of the greatly-improved condition of the native population, and of the ruin which the uncontrolled influx of the most dissolute and desperate Europeans was bringing upon them, first directed to those islands the attention of the advocates of systematic colonization. It was at this crisis that the Church Missionary Society made its first false step—a step which has led, I believe, to all the disastrous consequences which we have now to lament. Up to this point, its path, however difficult and dangerous, had been straight and plain to the perception of benevolence. But the question was no longer one of simple duty; it had become entangled with considerations of policy, upon which enlightened statesmen were alone competent to decide. It is no discredit to the Church Missionary Society to say that it was not in a position to take a large and comprehensive view either of the necessities of the case, or of the general and enduring interests of the people, to whom its missionaries stood in the relation of guardians. In consequence, they earnestly protested against the colonization of New Zealand, on the ground, partly, indeed, of the injustice, as they urged, of appropriating to British settlers any portion of the soil, the whole of which belonged to the native tribes; but chiefly because the influx of colonists would be ruinous to the grand experiment—then, as they alleged, in the most successful progress, of first converting to Christianity, and then civilizing, a noble race of aborigines—would infallibly tend to demoralize and degrade the native character, and must result, as in North America, Southern Africa, and elsewhere, in the extinction of the race. It was maintained that the natives, aided by the counsel of the missionaries, were able to govern themselves; that their independence had been formally recognised by the British Resident, and ratified by the Government; that they had established a congress of chiefs, and selected a national flag; that Christianity and civilization were advancing hand in hand; and that matters were generally in so satisfactory a train, that if but the ingress of British colonists were prevented, nothing was necessary but to leave well alone in order to the happiest consummation. I am compelled to state, that, according to the best judgment which a long and careful investigation of the subject has enabled me to form, this attractive picture represented rather the sanguine hopes and wishes of the Church Missionary Society, than the real facts of the case. The efforts of that body had baffled for several years the attempts of the advocates of colonization to found regular settlements on the shores of New Zealand; but they had not been able to prevent the large resort of Europeans to those islands. These men, generally of the most abandoned character, and many of them runaway convicts from New South Wales, brought with them all the vices, and one of the most dreadful diseases of Europe, of the effects of which upon the entire population, one of the witnesses examined by the Committee of the House of Lords, in 1838, Mr. Watkins, a surgeon, drew a frightful picture. Nor, though the influence of the missionaries—an influence acquired by the most legitimate means—was always exerted on the side of peace and righteousness and good order, could they succeed in counteracting, to any sufficient extent, the warlike ferocity of the principal tribes. On the contrary, Hongi, a chief of the neighbourhood of the Bay of Islands, who accompanied the Rev. Mr. Kendall to England in 1820, appears to have undertaken this long and tedious voyage for the sole purpose of possessing himself of a large supply of muskets and gunpowder. Having gained his object in this respect, he attacked the neighbouring tribes with the most ruthless barbarity, actually exterminating, it is said, those dwelling on the river Thames. The series of wars, extending over several years, and embracing the whole of the Northern island and the Middle island as far as Otago, to which Hongi's ambitious projects gave rise, are stated to have caused the loss of many thousand lives; the prisoners, including women and children, were often killed and eaten; there was great mortality, from various causes, among those reduced to slavery; and one tribe, harassed beyond endurance by its more powerful enemies, actually hired a vessel and emigrated in a body to the Chatham Islands. In these savage wars the abandoned white men living with the several tribes, lent their aid, in one way or other, to their native allies. Some supplied them with arms and ammunition, receiving payment in land; others took an active part in battle. Thus, in 1830, one Stewart hired his vessel to take Raupero (one of the principals in the Wairao massacre) on an errand of revenge to the Middle island; on which occasion the chief of the local tribe was first kidnapped, and then the whole population, amounting to 2,000 or 3,000 souls, either killed, taken prisoners, or driven into exile. One white savage killed many of the victims with his own hand; and the ship's coppers are stated to have been used for cooking the cannibal feasts of the conquerors. The evidence taken by the Committee of the House of Lords in 1838, and the Reports of the Resident, Mr. Busby, substantiated the following facts beyond all question:—that the influx of Europeans of the most abandoned character was rapidly increasing; that Mr. Busby had no power to prevent them from coming, or to control them when there; that, encouraged by numbers and impunity, these ruffians were daily becoming more audacious and mischievous; and that, from various causes, from war, from disease, from infanticide, and the like, the native race was wasting away to an extent that threatened its speedy extinction. Upon this latter point, admitted even by the missionaries, Mr. Busby's despatch of the 16th of June, 1837, is conclusive. He says:— In this way, district after district has become void of its inhabitants; and the population is, even now, but a remnant of what it was in the memory of some European residents. My hon. Friend the Member for Liskeard, who quoted this passage, omitted to state that this account of the rapid extinction of the native race applied to that part of the country in which the influence of the missionaries was at that time paramount. In illustration of the social condition of the New Zealanders at this period, I will trouble the House with but one anecdote, which was related to me six or seven years ago, by Mr. Pryce, son of Captain Pryce, R.N. Mr. Pryce was in charge of a boat belonging to a merchant ship, on the shore of the Bay of Islands, and saw there a chief pacing the beach in a state of violent excitement, waiting, as my informant afterwards heard, for one of his wives or slave women, who had gone on board a ship without his leave. When the unhappy woman landed, her brutal master stepped up to her, struck her down senseless, without a word spoken, by a single blow of his stone hatchet, instantly ripped open her bosom, tore out her still palpitating heart, crunched it between his teeth, then spit it out, and trampled it under his feet! Now, Sir, I am not so absurd, so wicked, as to say that the missionaries were the cause of the frightful state of things which I have feebly depicted. But they took place in spite of them; and, in spite of these horrors, the Church Missionary Society strained its influence to the utmost to prevent the establishment of a British Government, to which every other person acquainted with the circumstances of the case, looked, as the only possible cure for the evils which afflicted and were fast depopulating New Zealand. For it is to be observed, that no one person, in 1838, expressed an opinion that things had come to the worst, or could say that he saw any symptoms of improvement. Even the Church Missionary Society, although earnestly protesting against the establishment of a British Government, because they saw that it would necessarily involve colonization, could not fail to perceive that the moral power of the missionaries was no longer sufficient to cope with the great evils of the state of things which was growing up around them. Accordingly, Mr. Dandeson Coates, the Secretary and organ of the Society, propounded to the Committee of the House of Lords a plan for the establishment of a jurisdiction and the administration of justice in New Zealand, of which the main features were the constant residence in these islands of a Diplomatic Agent of the British Government (of such high moral and intellectual qualifications, that any person possessing them would fill with honour the first office under the Crown); the fixing of two courts of justice upon islands in the Bay of Islands and Cooks Strait, respectively; and the constant presence of one or even two vessels of war. The native chiefs were to perform the duties of police. These means were to be provided for the administration of the laws, in respect to British subjects only, the independence and absolute jurisdiction of the native chiefs being on no account to be interfered with. And no provision was made for the expense of these large establishments, which being rendered necessary by the sojourn of British subjects in New Zealand, Great Britain, it was said, was bound to bear. I have laid the outlines of this project before the House, in order to show the wild schemes to which these parties were driven, who objected to the establishment of a British Government, and yet could not but see that to allow matters to take their own course must inevitably lead to anarchy, and ensure the destruction of the whole native race. I am not sure, indeed, whether the Church Missionary Society saw the whole of this dismal prospect. Mr. Coates certainly did not. But every one not connected with the Society did, as well as some of the missionaries, and even the natives themselves. For Mr. Flatt, a Church missionary, stated to the Committee of the House of Lords that the natives had told him that they wished for protection, and that not against the white settlers only, because they put the wish on the ground that if they were left to themselves, they should destroy each other. But, speaking generally, the Church Missionary Society was prepared to brave all the evils and dangers of the existing state of things, rather than submit to the establishment of a British Government and regular colonization. Mr. Coates knew that he could not keep out the lawless settler, and that that class was daily becoming more numerous and formidable. But he would not see that the only efficient way to control the bad is to let in a preponderating number of those whose feelings and interests are arrayed on the side of peace and order, and to give to those principles the strength of an organized Government. Strangely enough, knowing what the lawless settlers were, he thought that regular colonists under a British Government would do greater injury to the aborigines. He thought especially that their conversion would be hindered, or that those who had embraced Christianity would be perverted, by being brought into contact with a body of British colonists fresh from this country. I do not think so ill of the morals or religion of my fellow countrymen. But I have some advantage over Mr. Dandeson Coates in this matter. I know by personal experience what new converts from heathenism are, and how little likely they are to suffer in morals or Christian spirit, by being brought into contact with Englishmen of an average character, living under the wholesome control of law and government. I do not say this to disparage the labours of the missionaries, or to depreciate the blessings of Christianity to those who are happily brought to embrace it. God forbid! But I know that the young must crawl and walk before they can run; I know that the deeply-rooted habits of heathenism are not to be got rid of in a day; I know, for example, that the Saxons, whom Charlemagne baptized at the point of the sword, were very different Christians from Martin Luther and his compatriots. We may depend upon it, indeed the opposite assumption appears to me to be most derogatory to the power and value of Christianity (as if its effects wore out by time), that the benefits which the New Zealanders would derive from associating with Englishmen of ordinary knowledge and virtue, would far outweigh the measure of evil involved, as a necessity of our condition, in that as in every other intercourse of man with man. I intended to have entered at more length into a consideration of the arguments by which Mr. Dandeson Coates has endeavoured to establish the national independence of the New Zealanders, and their capacity for self-government, building his position especially upon the Declaration of Independence published in 1835, and the recognition of their national flag. But this part of the subject has been pretty well exhausted by my hon. and learned Friend the Member for Liskeard, upon any ground touched by whom I am not at all disposed to venture. I will merely say, therefore, that in common with every impartial man who has examined this part of the subject—with the Rev. Dr. Lang, the senior minister of the Church of Scotland in New South Wales, with the Rev. Frederick Wilkinson, a chaplain of the Church of England in that Colony, who spent part of the year 1837 in New Zealand, with Sir George Gipps, with the Marquess of Normanby, and with the Select Committee of this House which sat last Session, and who carried the Resolution to which I refer, not by a narrow majority (to use the words of Lord Stanley), but by eight to five the Chairman, of course, not voting—in common, I say, with all these authorities, I cannot attach the smallest moral weight to any steps, quite beyond the comprehension of the natives, and which they took completely in the dark, at the dictation of the missionaries. The language in which most of the authorities I have cited speak of the transactions in question varies only between indignation and contempt. Dr. Lang writes, that "it is worse than idle, it is actually dishonest," to speak of the capacity of the native chiefs to establish law and government; and that such language can only be used— By individuals at all acquainted with the real circumstances of the case, for the express purpose of deceiving either the Government, or the public, or both. Sir George Gipps calls the Declaration of Independence "a concocted manœuvre" of Mr. Busby's, which it was not even pretended that the chiefs could understand; and "a paper pellet fired off at the Baron de Thierry." Why, Sir, the language of the New Zealanders has no word for "independence," "sovereignty," "government," "confederation," "legislature," or for half the terms used in the proclamation. Of the things themselves they know no more than a blind man does of colours. Indeed, it is very difficult to understand how that respected body, the Church Missionary Society, could persuade itself, or suffer Mr. Dandeson Coates to persuade it (for I wish to draw a broad line of distinction between that gentleman and the Society), that acts which the missionaries made the natives perform, just as a mother puts a pen into her infant's hand, and guides it to trace words of the meaning of which the child has not the slightest conception, could be considered to demonstrate the desire and the capacity of that rude people for self-government. What Mr. Busby did, or rather appeared to do, was in fact done by the missionaries, to whom, when he was appointed Resident, he was "accredited" (that is the very word used), and in respect to whom he informed Governor Sir Richard Bourke that— Unless a defined and specific share in the Government, of the country be allotted to the missionaries, the British Government has no right to expect that that influential body will give a hearty support to its representative. In fact, the Government of New Zealand was at that time a missionocracy, and those must know very little of human nature who can wonder that men, even good men, having acquired power, should be unwilling to part with it. I think that the House will not require any more proof that the natives of New Zealand are altogether incapable of governing or protecting themselves. It will be admitted also that the necessities of the case—necessities too long peevishly struggled against, and at length very insufficiently provided for—demanded the establishment of a British Government in those islands. My hon. Friend the Member for Liskeard has told the House by what absurd shifts for which former false steps of the same nature were the only excuses, that object was accomplished. The Treaty of Waitangi, the result of the false bias given to the measures of the Colonial Office by the mistaken policy of the Church Missionary Society, which the Government adopted with indiscriminating credulity, has already produced very mischievous results. But neither the colonists nor the aborigines have yet eaten all its bitter fruits. The colonists have hitherto been the principal sufferers. But the turn of the aborigines will assuredly come. And the Colonial Office, the local Government, and the missionaries appear to have conspired to aggravate the severity of the crisis. They have done everything that human ingenuity could do to estrange from each other the two races by which New Zealand must be peopled. The Government has done its best, or worst, to render amalgamation impossible. I well know which race will be swept away, if impolicy persisted in should bring on a struggle for life. It is, therefore, because I am as cordial a friend to the aborigines as any other member of the Church Missionary Society, and because I sincerely grieve to see the great influence of that Society misdirected, as I am convinced, to the extreme peril of bringing utter ruin upon the helpless people who are the objects of its most injurious partiality, that I earnestly entreat the House to give its best attention to the lamentable condition to which the course taken by the Colonial Office has reduced New Zealand. I earnestly entreat the Church Missionary Society, with which I have been so long connected, to withdraw from interference with the political affairs of New Zealand; not to allow its local missionaries to meddle with those affairs, so much beyond the sphere of their proper and most important functions; but, above all, I entreat the Society not to permit its lay Secretary, Mr. Dandeson Coates, to run to and fro between Salisbury-square and Downing-street, writing and publishing letters to Lord Stanley, and mixing himself and the Society up with all the secular concerns of the administration of the Colony. If the Society is not wise enough to take this honest counsel, given by a sincere friend, I trust that Her Majesty's Government will take measures to keep the Society and its missionaries within those bounds which they ought to observe of their own accord. Sir, my hon. Friend the Member for the University of Oxford took exception, on a recent occasion, to my saying that the natives of New Zealand ought to be regarded and treated as children. I assure my hon. Friend that I used that expression in no spirit of unkindness or contempt, but with quite a contrary feeling; and if the expression so used (as it is, not by me only, but by Dr. Lang, Mr. Wilkinson, and Dr. Hinds, all ministers of the gospel) be really open to objection, I am at a loss to understand what is meant by a paternal government, and by the praises which many hon. Gentlemen bestow on such a state of things. In a country like this, indeed, where the people are so often in advance of their rulers in intelligence and practical wisdom, and so seldom behind them, I cannot say that I am much enamoured of what is called paternal government. But in such a country as New Zealand, where Englishmen have to govern a population unquestionably far inferior to them, not only in material civilization, but in every branch of knowledge, in morals, and in religion, I must confess that it appears to me that our relative duties are of a paternal character; and that consideration for the real and permanent welfare of the aborigines demands that they should, for a time, be treated as children, to be protected from their own foolish and evil habits, as well as from the injustice of others; and to be gradually trained up for the discharge of the functions of free citizens. This is just what we are doing in British India, and, as I am conscientiously persuaded, with the happiest effects. But however much the use of the term may be objected to, those whose policy my hon. Friend so much admires, the successive Governors of New Zealand and the missionaries, who have been viceroys over them, have habitually treated the aborigines as "children." Still our views are as wide as possible asunder. The Government have always treated the natives with the most injudicious indulgence, have humoured their passions and prejudices, and have truckled to their violence. They have treated them, in short, as spoiled children are treated by the weakest parents, to the injury of all persons concerned, but to the certain ruin of the unhappy objects of such blind and foolish affection. On the other hand, I am persuaded that the real interest of the aborigines requires that they should be governed as wise parents govern their children; and we all know that to such a government the enforcement of prompt submission to lawful authority, till such submission becomes a habit, is the indispensable first step. Till the natives of New Zealand are brought to acknowledge practically that they are the subjects of the Queen, and to pay implicit obedience to her laws, wisely modified to suit their particular condition, all indulgence, however well intended, is, in my judgment, purely mischievous. Till this be done, the very basis of all sound social education is absolutely wanting. And those who have treated them, and wish to continue to treat them, in truth, whatever they may profess or really feel, like spoiled children, are their worst enemies. For the evil day, the day of correctional discipline, the day of enforcing obedience, must come at last, and its bitterness will be in exact proportion to its postponement. When the more violent and intractable chiefs have cut down some more of Her Majesty's flags, wrecked more houses, pillaged or burnt more crops, outraged greater numbers of our fellow countrymen, and massacred some scores more of British subjects—to say nothing of the pitched battles which they fight among themselves—even the Colonial Office will think that it is time for the Queen's Government to bestir itself. And then it will cost a sanguinary struggle, resulting in the animosities and heartburnings of years, to do that which a resolute and well-supported assertion of authority would probably have effected, without exciting resistance, if we had wisely begun at the beginning. There is no cruelty equal to that of a pampering kindness. Humble as is the position which I hold in this House, I know something of the means by which distant nations, differing from us in colour, in language, in manners, and in religion, and many classes of which, a hundred times more numerous, are to the full as bold and warlike and well armed as the New Zealanders, are governed—well and easily governed—by a handful of Englishmen. In India, matters are managed by taking precisely the opposite course to that which the Colonial Office has taken in New Zealand. Authority is entrusted to competent hands, not to such men as Governors Hobson, Shortland, and Fitzroy have proved themselves to be. We respect and protect individuals, encourage and aid the missionaries, but we do not take lessons in government from them. Still less do we recognise claims like those which they asserted to Mr. Busby, for "a defined and specific share in the government "of the country." We begin by enforcing authority; and never, first or last, allow impunity to crime, or call weakness of purpose and moral cowardice, indulgence. We never, for example, omit to provide for our own defence, and the maintenance of good order, by raising a military force, for fear that the turbulent and disaffected should take offence at the precaution. Why, Sir, to say nothing of British subjects, when a nominally independent Prince hired an assassin to murder Mr. William Fraser (the man shot my poor friend dead), the Government of Lord Metcalfe brought both the parties to trial, and hung them both, both being Mussulmans, at Delhi, still the head quarters of the Mahomedan population. In short. Sir, we do whatsoever the three successive Governors of New Zealand have left undone, and leave undone all that they have done. Let hon. Gentlemen, if their imagination can carry them such a flight, picture to themselves British India governed for five weeks as unhappy New Zealand has been governed for five years. This is beyond my powers of fancy: I content myself with imagining what my noble Friend Lord Metcalfe, one of the most benevolent of men, would have said and done, if the Governor of Madras or Bombay had reported that two tribes had fought a pitched battle within a few miles of his capital, and that he had neither attempted to prevent the conflict, nor to call the combatants to account. Sir, those who take a different view of the matter may say that the policy which I recommend has not been tried in New Zealand, and if tried, might not succeed. My answer is, that it has fully succeeded elsewhere, and that the only alternative—their plan—has had ample trial in New Zealand, and has signally failed. Just look at the state of affairs at the northern end of the island where the New Zealand Company—the one great cause of all evil elsewhere—has not intermeddled in the slightest degree. There the missionaries and the Government have done what seemed best to them, without let or hindrance from anybody. There, at least, the Treaty of Waitangi has been scrupulously observed. Well, has this policy, with the freest field for its development, borne good fruit? Are the aborigines contented, happy, on cordial terms with the British settlers, well affected to the indulgent Government? So far from it, that the state of things round the seat of Government was at the date of the last despatches, and for months previously, ten times worse than it was in Cook's Strait. So long ago as the time of Governor Shortland, two tribes, with their respective allies, fought a pitched battle at Manganui, north of the Bay of Islands, in consequence of a dispute about land which one chief had sold to the Government, and another to private individuals. About five or six thousand men were present, and fifty were killed, including, it is said, fifteen considerable chiefs. The Queen's Government quietly submitted to this insult, without any effort, as far as I am aware, to vindicate Her Majesty's authority and laws. The hon. Gentleman the Under Secretary stated, that battle was not about a land title. It was about nothing else. Matters have been getting worse and worse every day. The chief, John Heki, insulted and robbed the settlers at Russell, and cut down Her Majesty's flag. The Governor summoned him, he refused to come; he was tried by proxy, fined, and the fine returned to those who paid it for him. He has shown his grateful sense of this indulgent treatment by cutting the flag down twice more, giving notice that he is going to Auckland in a few months, for the same loyal purpose. Mr. Busby, good authority upon such a point, accounts for the matter in the following terms, in his letter to Mr. Under-Secretary Hope, dated the 17th of January last:— From an intimate knowledge of the character and conduct of John Heki during the last eleven years, as well as from the sentiments he has more than once expressed to myself, I have no hesitation in affirming that the act of cutting down the flagstaff was a premeditated act of defiance and rebellion against the Government; and though I am inclined to hope that few of the chiefs in the northern part of New Zealand would be parties to such an act, yet I am firmly persuaded that the majority, if not the whole of the natives, participate in the distrust and disaffection of which that proceeding is an evidence. But lest there should be any doubt on the subject, Governor Fitzroy has given his own testimony in respect to the disposition of the natives in the vicinity of Auckland towards the White settlers. It was urged upon him, during a debate in the Legislative Council, on his budget, that he ought to compel the settlers to abandon their life of idleness in the town, and to betake themselves to industry in the bush, by reducing the expenditure of the Government. The honourable Member" (Dr. Martin), (replied the Governor, and apparently he thought it a perfectly satisfactory answer) "seemed desirous that he should, in imitation of Governor Grey, drive the people from the town into the bush. Did he (Dr. Martin) not know the bush was not prepared for them; that there was no safety for them, and no food? Such has been the happy effect of a strict adherence to the policy prescribed by the missionaries in the immediate vicinity of the seat of Government. Even the Treaty of Waitangi, held to be so stringently binding upon Her Majesty, with a construction infinitely larger than that contemplated by the Government to which Captain Hobson, its framer, was subject, has been twice relaxed in favour of the natives, or rather of the great landsharking interests. The Treaty records that the chiefs yield to Her Majesty the exclusive right of pre-emption over such lands as the proprietors thereof may be disposed to alienate. This provision, essential to the real interests of all parties, but especially of the aborigines, has been set aside to gratify their shortsighted cupidity, and to give another day of license to the land-sharks. Any man can now purchase direct from the natives, on payment to the Government of a fee of a penny per acre; and all the land in New Zealand the great fund from which so much benefit might have been derived to both races, is once more at the mercy of the greedy. Add to this so-called indulgence, that all custom duties have been abolished, solely to gratify the aborigines. Again, I ask, has the result been happy? So far from it, that the native chiefs have immediately entered with redoubled vigour upon a fresh career of violence and plunder, and long ere this, doubtless, there has been bloody collision. Quitting other matters, which my reluctance to trespass longer on the House, compels me to pass by, I come to a subject which I approach with unaffected pain and reluctance. I refer, of course, to the claims of land, on the ground of purchases from the natives, put forward by persons connected with the Church Missionary Society. The whole amount claimed by all the persons who were in the employment of the Church Missionary Society in 1837, is 185,233 acres, including 3,900 acres for Church missionary families, but not including 11,607 acres for the Society itself; so that the aggregate is 196,840 acres. There are, moreover, ten claims put forward by Church missionaries, in which the amount of land is not stated, which may be small, but which may be as large as the largest; and several parties appear as claimants to the aggregate extent of 38,790 acres, respecting whom it is not certain whether they are Church missionaries, or the children of Church missionaries. I believe that they are. Now, let me say, in the first place, with such plainness as may afford no room for misconstruction, that I impute no further blame to the Church Missionary Society as a body, than that it has failed to maintain a sufficiently strict control over the administration of its own affairs by those to whom it has committed them, and has not taken decided steps to vindicate its character. Secondly, I will say with the utmost sincerity, that I am sure there is no person connected with the Society in this country who has the smallest selfish interest in upholding or defending abuses in New Zealand. Further, I am bound to say frankly, that I think that the Church missionaries in New Zealand, having families growing up around them, with no means of sending them home even for education, still less of settling them in life elsewhere than in New Zealand, were justified in purchasing from the natives a reasonable quantity of land to enable their sons to maintain themselves by agriculture, which indeed, under the circumstances of the case, must be almost their only resource. And I think that the limit fixed by the committee of the Church Missionary Society in 1830, of 200 acres for each child, on attaining the age of fifteen, is a reasonable amount. But I must speak my opinions with equal frankness in respect to other and less pleasing views of the question. In the first place, it is clear that the missionaries have purchased from the natives, to whom they stood in the sacred relation of guardians, far more land than was sufficient to satisfy their legitimate wants. It is equally clear that, though still defended in the most uncompromising manner by Mr. Coates, they have altogether disregarded the plain injunctions of the Society. They were never authorised to buy any land for themselves. They have bought scores of thousands of acres. They were directed to refer the nature and extent of the purchase for their children in each case to the Committee in this country for their sanction. This requisition is dated in July, 1830; yet, in 1838, Mr. Flatt's evidence before the House of Lords, mentioning some only of the purchases made by the missionaries, took Mr. Coates altogether by surprise. He said, that he could scarcely believe it. He said, that the missionaries, when they speak of purchases of land, speak of small quantities only. He said, too, that he believed it would be proved, that the purchases made by the missionaries in their own names had been made —"at least to a considerable extent, as trustees for the natives, to rescue them from being prevailed upon to alienate their lands to Europeans of a different class. Mr. Garrett, another committee-man of the Church Missionary Society, examined by the Lords in 1838, is still more explicit. He is asked— If the missionaries have made large purchases, has it been in violation of the orders and instructions they have received?—Contrary to the spirit of the orders they have received, that is, quite contrary to the views of the Society. Their only object in permitting them to have land is, that they should have just enough to supply their own wants, and to provide for their children. It now turns out that whilst the missionaries were keeping the Society at home altogether in the dark, or writing for permission to make petty purchases for their children, under the Society's resolutions of July, 1830, they were acquiring enormous tracts for themselves so quietly, that Mr. Coates could not believe it when he was told of it. As soon, too, as a Commission of Land Claims was opened, the plea of purchase in trust for the natives was heard of no more. The claims were advanced by the individual missionaries or catechists for their own benefit, without qualification or reserve. Yet Mr. Coates is in no wise daunted. He changes his position with remarkable courage. What was quite incredible in 1838, is all right in 1845. That the missionaries claim the land for themselves is now undeniable; but they are not even blamed for having concealed the possession of it for so many years—in some instances, since 1825. They have many pleas of justification. Their families are large; the land is bad; "less favourable for agriculture than was supposed." Then, in New South Wales, the Government formerly made very large grants "in analogous cases." Two only of the missionaries have more land than this precedent justifies; they have rendered great service to the natives, and Governor Fitzroy has allowed them an additional two hundred acres for each son. The excuses pleaded in exculpation are miserable—no other term will properly describe them. The missionaries' families are large: no one would object to their multiplying the two hundred acres allowed by the Society by the number of their children. But, on the rule laid down, Mr. Clarke's claim (not one of the largest) would serve for twenty-seven children; the Rev. Mr. Taylor's for two hundred and fifty. The land is not bad; all accounts concur in representing its wonderful general fertility. Mr. Flatt speaks of having passed over fifty miles of fine rich soil, near the river Thames, with not an acre cultivated. He states, that he examined Mr. Fairburn's purchase, which he says was called "a whole county," and found it to be "a very rich soil." The colonists of Cook's Strait find many hundreds, nay thousands, of acres of good land in blocks; and the sons of noblemen, and of the first gentlemen in the land, who have emigrated thither, have been content in every instance, I believe, with a few hundred acres. There is no analogy whatever, even if profusion in one case were an excuse for cupidity in another, between the fertile valleys of New Zealand (part of Mr. Fairburn's purchase was a valuable timber district), and the parched and barren sheep-walks of New South Wales. Sir, I have by no means exhausted this part of my subject. I could show that the opinions which I hold in respect to the misconduct of the Church missionaries, in possessing themselves of such enormous tracts of land, and to the effects of that misconduct in the cause of religion, I hold in common with men—clergymen of the Church of England—of the highest character. But the length of time during which I have already trespassed on the indulgence of the House warns me to forbear; and whilst I heartily thank them for that indulgence, I will not further abuse it.

Mr. Colquhoun

In one respect I perfectly agree with the hon. Gentleman who has just sat down—that in no Colony ought either missionaries or ecclesiastics to have any part in its political government. But when I find that every Colonial Minister, from Lord Glenelg to the noble Lord who now holds the Seals of Office, however various their sentiments, all agree in acknowledging the services which have been rendered by the missionaries to the social condition of New Zealand, I must consider this as ample testimony that the censure cast upon them by the hon. Gentleman is unfounded; and that they have not allowed themselves to be seduced from their proper sphere into one with which they have no concern. I have read, Sir, with great care, the voluminous evidence presented both last year and in former years, upon the state of New Zealand; and the conclusion to which I have been forced by these documents is, that the condition of that Colony is not satisfactory. I pass by, for the present, the form of the Motion submitted by the hon. and learned Gentleman. I take the practical question raised by him to be this:—Is the Colony of New Zealand at present in such a state as that Parliament ought to regard it with satisfaction? Or are there circumstances in its condition so grave and urgent, that it becomes necessary for this House to claim the prompt interposition of Government, and to require that the policy pursued towards it should be either modified or changed? I do not agree with the hon. Member for Guildford, that the Colonial Office is, either now, or in past times, so weakly administered as to be swayed by any external influences which can be brought to bear on it I do not believe that Mr. Coates, whose name I mention with the utmost respect, can exercise any unbecoming power over the Colonial Administration. Does any Gentleman believe, that he did so when the noble Lord the Member for London was Secretary for the Colonies? I attribute the same independent conduct to the noble Lord who now holds the Seals of Office. The fault, if there be any, rests, not with the individuals who have been blamed, but with our system. On this subject, I must speak my mind with frankness, and aloof from the prejudices of party. I have looked through the Colonial despatches for a long series of years. I have had access, of which I have taken advantage, to the opinions and information of parties having a personal stake in several of our Colonies. Both sources have led me to this opinion, that there has been no period during the last quarter of a century in which the affairs of the Colonial Department have been conducted with greater vigour, higher administrative wisdom and justice, than during the administration of the noble Lord the Member for London. It is the essence of our Colonial system, that the Secretary of State is in his administration supreme. What he does, he does unchecked by public opinion; as public opinion here is, in Colonial matters, little interested; and the public opinion of the Colonies, as expressed in their newspapers, is in general so distorted by passion, and so marked by exaggeration, that it rather revolts than attracts sympathy. The despotism, therefore, of a Secretary of State is practically unchecked; and I admit that if we are to have a despotism, I am not sure that we could find one better fitted for such power than the noble Lord opposite, when, at least, he acts from his own judgment, and does not consult the extreme opinions of his party. He possesses great talents, a judgment clear, prompt, and undisturbed by passion; a will which is inflexible; an eye quick to discern the evil; a genius ready to apply the remedy. If there is to be uncontrolled power, I do not know where you will find a better depository. But I say—and I would beg to impress this upon the House—that you ought not to found a system of Government on the rare combination of singular qualities in the person of one man. This is no safe basis for administration; and, therefore, I conjure the House, and I urge on the Government, to consider and devise for our Colonial Government an effectual reform. Compare the administration of your Colonies with the government of your Indian Empire; how different their history! You may denounce the one as an anomaly; you may say that it is wrong that a company of merchants, or a society of shareholders, should influence the Government of a mighty Empire. Anomalous in theory, look how it works in practice. A Colonial body, interested by the best of all ties, their own personal interest, in the prosperity of India, sitting in London, receiving information from the most qualified parties who have spent part of their lives in the East, adopting these into their counsel, checking the Government, and yet checked by them. This balanced system has given the millions of that Empire a wise and tolerant administration. This system, or some such system, must be applied to your Colonies, if you would impart confidence to the Colonists, stability and wisdom to their administration. I beg pardon for having introduced these general topics—I turn from them to the special question before the House. One fact meets me at the outset—that after the lapse of many years, the colonists connected with the New Zealand Company are still excluded from the possession of land. How long is this to continue? I do not inquire into the manner in which that land was purchased; I do not ask—for that does not seem to me material—what views were formerly entertained by the noble Lord the Member for London; views still, perhaps, retained by the present Secretary for the Colonies. The practical question is this:—Can we see men for five years excluded from the possession of the soil, without which they can obtain no return for their capital, or the means of employing labour? Can we see, without calling on the Government and the House to devise a remedy? I wish to adopt no party view, but to regard the matter in the light of common sense. Some end should surely be put to this condition of things. I would much rather that this question, instead of coming before the House, had found its solution out of the House—that some arrangement had been made between the Colonial Office and the New Zealand Company. But, as the question is now placed before us, if I am called upon to say, whether I regard the condition of New Zealand as satisfactory, I am bound to confess that I think it is not. It appears to me full of alarm, involving very serious results, unless the Government interpose. That is the aspect of the land question; but there are other matters equally urgent. Have there been disorders in New Zealand? Is it the fact that there have been outrages unpunished, turbulence unrepressed? How have these been checked? By a compromise between the Government and the disturbers of the peace. Do I blame Captain Fitzroy for this? He has his defence. This course was necessary from the weakness of the Government. I admit it. It is that necessity which alarms me. This is a question with which the New Zealand Company have no concern. It affects the Colony at large. If this weakness arises from a want of funds, then I pray the Colonial Office to come to Parliament, and seek increased resources. If they want force, let them ask for additional force. But when I find Captain Fitzroy going to a Colony with a force which he proclaims to be inadequate—when I see him finding there a revenue of 20,000l., and this revenue now reduced to one-half, whilst the expenditure amounts to 35,000l. a year, I ask, whether that is not a case for the interposition of Government? These are matters not to be thrown on Captain Fitzroy, for him to find a solution of them in the Colony; these ought to be decided and solved by the Government at home. These are my views upon the condition of New Zealand. I regard it as eminently unsatisfactory. But I cannot adopt the Resolutions of the hon. and learned Member for Liskeard. If the hon. Member had simply moved to go into Committee, I should have found it impossible to refuse him my support; but when he proposes to go there, in order to adopt Resolutions from many of which I dissent, I feel that it is impossible for me to vote for his Motion. The prominent view which pervades the Resolutions of the hon. and learned Member is, that all the waste lands of New Zealand belong to the Crown. He is prepared to affirm that proposition; I am not. Whether it is sound or not in itself, I do not say; I do not think it consistent with the stipulation of the Treaty of Waitangi. The hon. Member proposes to state, that we have sustained great inconvenience by that Treaty, and that it was inexpedient. It may be so—we made it—we are bound by it; but no one can persuade me, that in spite of the Treaty of Waitangi, and respecting all its provisions, we cannot find some mode of acquiring land, which will supply the wants of the colonists. If the Government applied itself with earnestness to this object, I am sure they would accomplish it; but let them tell us what directions they have given—what course they have suggested to the new Governor. On this point, there can be no difference of opinion—that continued speculation in land is ruinous to the interests of all parties. No friend of the natives would desire to see them turning their energies in this direction, and endeavouring to gain from the land inordinate sums, which they would lavish in excess. What we must desire for them is, to see them directed to habits of patient industry, and that steady application to agriculture, which are indispensable to raise their character, and their position in the social scale. All this might be effected, and this long pending question might be settled, without violating the Treaty of Waitangi. To a proposition which assails it, I cannot give my consent; it might extricate you from an immediate embarrassment; it would involve your Colonial Empire in the greatest difficulties. For upon what does that Empire rest? Confidence in your justice—the honesty of your Government. I see before me three Colonial systems, each of which has the patronage of great nations. There is the Colonial system of the United States, which deals with the native as you deal with a beast of prey; drives him out in the progress of civilization; hunts him down when he resists; starves, corrupts, and at last destroys him. There is the Dutch system of colonization—less cruel, but harsh and stern — which treats the native, not as a beast of prey, but as a beast of burden; makes him toil for the colonist; heaps labour upon his shoulders; and never seeks to civilize and elevate him. There is, again, the French system—smart, flippant, ambitious of conquest—grasping at fresh dominion; seeking for glory to France; indifferent to the welfare of the native: such we find it in Algiers and Tahiti—and what are its results? To make the Colony a battle-field, and the limits of the camp the limits of safety; to arm against the colonist the indomitable passions of the native, whom he has wronged. These are systems full of instruction; but for warning, not for example. I trust the character of England will never be tarnished by their adoption. Yet we should lean towards them, if we adopted the propositions of the hon. and learned Member for Liskeard. He has described the natives of New Zealand as savage and ferocious cannibals; others, I think with greater truth, have described them as courageous, but full of sagacity, fit objects for the mild influences of civilization. But be they what they are, with them we have made a Treaty, sanctioned by the faith of the British Crown, and which ought to be binding on the honour of the British Parliament. If we were to say to them, "We put aside the Treaty we have made; we see your waste lands, we wish to acquire them; we will take them, not by fair bargain, and amicable adjustment, but by a violent seizure, founded on a general theory of national policy—a theory which the hon. and learned Member ably expounded, but which my hon. Friend the Member for the University of Oxford has triumphantly exposed—if we were to take that general theory, and present it to the warlike population of the islands of the Pacific, I can conceive no more serious danger, no greater blow to the quiet progress of English colonization, no deeper injury to the national character. The Treaty may be unwise—we are bound to adhere to it; if the population of New Zealand is small, we ought to adhere to it; if they had been strong, they would have forced us to observe it; if they are weak, our sense of honour ought to impose upon us an equal obligation. But while I refuse to adopt the proposition of the hon. and learned Member, I appeal to the Government to tell us—not in ingenious arguments, such as those which the Under Secretary of the Colonies and the Secretary of the Treasury have used to defend what is past—but that they mean to modify and amend the system for the future. That is now the practical point; and I ask the right hon. Baronet at the head of the Government to announce, for the benefit of all our Colonies, for the benefit of the New Zealand natives no less than of the colonists, that the policy hitherto pursued on this grave question is about to undergo a decisive change; to tell them in what that change is to consist; and to leave it to the House in their deliberate judgment to decide whether that change is one which will be satisfactory, and will afford a just solution of this embroiled question.

Mr. Sheil

Sir, although the Papers are exceedingly voluminous respecting the matters which have led to the unhappy controversy between the New Zealand Company and the noble Lord, to whom the right hon. Gentleman has committed the Government of our Colonial Empire, I think the facts are few and simple on which the real merits of the question depend. On the 18th November, 1840, nine months after the Treaty of Waitangi, and when the Government had full cognizance of the stipulations contained in that Treaty, an agreement was entered into by the New Zealand Company with my noble Friend the then Secretary for the Colonies, who has not only the highest talent for debate, but is a statesman, cool, cautious, and just. That agreement stated a most important fact—that the Company were in possession of 1,000,000 of acres; that they had made a great outlay; that large sums had been expended in freighting and chartering ships for the purpose of emigration, and in the accumulation of stores for the support of the settlers upon their arrival, and in the erection of public buildings, and in other works adapted for a large and prosperous community. These appear in the very head and front of the agreement—no one has controverted their truth. Lord John Russell appointed Mr. Pennington, an accountant, for the purpose of ascertaining what had been the outlay of the Company. It had been agreed that for every pound expended by the Company for the benefit of the Colony, they should receive four acres of land in return. The agreement was, upon one side, that as soon as Mr. Pennington had made his award, the quantity of land to which it should appear by that award that the Company was entitled, should be conveyed by the Crown to the Company. That agreement is unambiguous. A question has been raised with respect to the meaning of the Treaty of Waitangi; but no question can be raised with respect to the contract entered into between the Government and the New Zealand Company in 1840. In 1844, Mr. Somes, one of the most important members of the New Zealand Company, called upon my noble Friend to give an explanation of that agreement, and my noble Friend adopted the explanation given by the Company; and I do not find that Lord Stanley has ever insisted upon a different explanation from the Company. That contract having been entered into, plain sense puts to common justice this question—has that agreement ever been fulfilled? Are men who laid out hundreds of thousands of pounds—who laid the foundation of a great Colony—who expended vast sums — constructed great public works—to receive nothing in return? What have they received? Nothing—not an acre. That is a fact, which no intrepidity of asseveration can venture to controvert, no skill in sophistry can elude; and had the New Zealand Company had nothing else to rely upon, I confess that I should think that their case would have been complete. Lord John Russell sent instructions to the Governor of New Zealand to carry that agreement into effect. I cannot conceive a case stronger than that which I have mentioned—an original agreement deliberately made—after, observe, the Treaty of Waitangi—ratified by the Government. My noble Friend left office, Lord Stanley came in, and it was no very great surprise to any one that the noble Lord came at once into conflict with the New Zealand Company. They called upon him to fulfil that contract; they entreated, they expostulated, they remonstrated in vain. In the midst of the unhappy altercation which arose between the Government and the Company, my hon. Friend the Member for Cockermouth (Mr. Aglionby), finding that all chance of justice at the Colonial Office was at an end, applied to the House of Commons. Let the House and country mark what took place. My hon. Friend moved for a Committee. It was obvious that the masses of documentary evidence, the Treaty, the instructions, the despatches, the agreements, could never be thoroughly examined by the House. The Government affected to court inquiry. The Committee was named by the Government, and was composed of five Whigs and—what shall I call them?—ten Conservatives. Among the latter were the Under Secretary for the Colonies, the Secretary for the Treasury, Lord Jocelyn, and Lord Francis Egerton. A Committee more favourable to Lord Stanley could not have been appointed. The case was thoroughly investigated. Every point which was urged by the Under Secretary for the Colonies was strenuously insisted on; the Colonial Office put forth all its strength; and a gentleman, who has since been made Financial Secretary of the Treasury, exerted himself to the utmost in the defence of the Government with which he has been since associated. I do not believe that it will be contended that the case was not thoroughly investigated. The Committee had before them the entire of the documents—the Treaty of Waitangi—the mass of Papers under which the Table of the House of Commons groans. Witnesses were examined, and it was proved that there were millions upon millions of acres in New Zealand upon which the vestige of a human foot could not be traced. After most laborious, most minute, and, I am justified surely in saying, a most impartial inquiry, to what conclusion did this Committee, containing so large a majority—two to one—of your supporters—arrive? To the conclusion to which my hon. Friend invites the House to come—they reported against the Government. My Lord Stanley, in his commentaries upon that Report, says that the Committee were not unanimous—that the Resolutions were carried by a narrow majority. When I saw that statement made by Lord Stanley, I looked to the division upon the subject. I find that on the Resolution most strongly condemning the conduct of Lord Stanley, there voted against him my hon. Friend the Member for Pontefract (Mr. Milnes), the habitual supporter of, and not only useful but ornamental to the Government. I find that the accomplished gentleman who was elected by the Government to move the Address at the commencement of this Session (Mr. Charteris) voted against my Lord Stanley. I find my Lord Jocelyn, an Irishman, who, I am sure, in this investigation must have remembered that my Lord Stanley was once Secretary for Ireland, voted against my Lord Stanley. But, though last in enumeration, first in account, I find that Lord Francis Egerton, a man of great rank, of the very highest position in this country, of great talents, of indisputable worth, of whose services the country is deprived, for a cause which all of us concur in lamenting—I find that Lord Francis Egerton voted against my Lord Stanley. Nay, more; not contented with voting against my Lord Stanley, Lord Francis Egerton was the man who moved as an Amendment a Clause most strongly condemnatory of the noble Lord. Mark the words:— That the acknowledgment by the local Authorities of a right of property on the part of the natives of New Zealand in all wild land in those islands, after the Sovereignty had been assumed by Her Majesty, was not essential to the true construction of the Treaty of Waitangi, and which error was productive of very injurious consequences. What can be more significant than that? The whole question is here condensed. The entire of the Resolutions of my hon. Friend might have been compressed into that Resolution, and that Resolution, thus denunciatory of the Government, was moved by one of the most conspicuous Members of the Conservative party in this House. So strong was the conviction of the noble Lord that wrong—plain and manifest wrong—had been done; so strong was his conviction that gross injustice had been perpetrated; that, not satisfied with the Resolution moved by the Friends of the Colony, he, of his own accord, prompted by his sense of honour, moved the Amendment which I have just mentioned. When you shall do me the honour to advert to my observations, don't answer me, but answer Lord Francis Egerton, in defending Lord Stanley. After the Committee of 1844, what took place? One would imagine that when Lord Stanley had read the Report of the Committee, he would have retraced his steps—he would have acknowledged his mistake—that his policy would been altered—that at all events he would have entered into some sort of amicable communication with the Company; but what took place? He wrote a despatch; and he seems to have thought that as the Report was "Howick against Stanley," the despatch should be in the cross-cause—a very cross cause—of "Stanley against Howick." Accordingly the despatch contains nothing but a series of animadversions upon my Lord Howick's Report. His object is not to govern New Zealand, but to refute my noble Friend; and as in that Report, drawn by the noble Chairman, a principle of Colonial law was referred to—a principle laid down by Sir George Gipps—an indisputable and familiar principle—viz., that barbarous tribes have no vested property in any land they do not occupy, my Lord Stanley's business was to dispute the premises; and accordingly he expatiates on the merits of the New Zealanders, by whose cuisine my Lord Stanley does not appear to have been shocked. In the gastronomy of the Pacific, Lord Stanley discovers a fine moral taste and a relish for civilization. Last night the noble Lord the Member for Sunderland mentioned a curious fact illustrative of the law of real property in New Zealand. It is an improvement on the familiar anecdote:—"Jel'ai mangé!" exclaimed a chief, in proof that he was acquainted with a Frenchman. "Title," in New Zealand, is, it appears, derived through digestion. The accuracy of the noble Lord's statement may be questioned by those who think it too horrible for truth; but no one will contradict the fact stated by my hon. Friend the Member for Liskeard, in his most masterly speech, that the most ferocious and sanguinary chief in New Zealand founded his title to the valley of Wairoa upon his having put all the inhabitants to death. The Report of the Committee had no effect upon my Lord Stanley; but it had upon the public mind; and when it was found that no redress was to be granted to the Company, that the Government would not act upon the Report of the Committee of their own nomination, the merchants, the great capitalists of London assembled together, and presented a petition, to which I beg to invite the attention of the Government. Most able speeches have been delivered on this subject. There was the admirable exposition of my hon. and learned Friend. Last night my noble Friend the Member for Sunderland, with his usual comprehensiveness, pointed out the faults you had committed, and the mode in which they should be remedied. But I do not hesitate to say, that nothing has been said at all comparable to the matter that is set forth in the petition of the merchants and traders of London. That petition was presented on, I think, the 18th of March, 1845. I have seen the right hon. Gentleman at the head of the Government, armed with a petition of the merchants of London; I have seen him stand up in the House of Commons, and with the emphasis peculiar to himself, expatiate on the importance of the sustainment he had received from the great mercantile body of the kingdom; and surely it will be felt that the petition to which I am about to advert—a petition not only condemnatory but denunciatory of your conduct—is deserving, if not of yours, at least of public consideration. That petition states— That the renewal of differences with the Colonial Department, and the simultaneous occurrence of distractions and disputes in the Colony, having produced universal dissatisfaction and complaint, sowed the seeds of alienation between the European and native races, and reduced both the newly founded settlements and the New Zealand Company to the verge of ruin, your petitioners, in common with the whole British community, viewed with the most lively interest the appointment by your honourable House, during the last Session of Parliament, of a 'Select Committee to inquire into the state of New Zealand, and the proceedings of the New Zealand Company.' That the publication of the Report of that Committee, with the evidence on which it was founded, has satisfied your petitioners that the New Zealand Company, and the colonists who emigrated under their auspices, have been exposed to hardships and difficulties, the result of the policy, on the part of the Colonial Office and the local authorities, which called for prompt interference and redress. That your petitioners cannot forget, that to the efforts of that Company it is owing that New Zealand is not now a Colony of France; nor overlook the fact, that its claims to land, so perseveringly opposed by the Colonial Office, are pronounced by the Select Committee of your honourable House to be founded in justice. That the whole inquiry proving to demonstration the invaluable capabilities of the Colony, and how grievously their development is at present retarded; the claims of the New Zealand Company, and in how great a degree its usefulness is impeded; and the urgency of the necessity for extending to the colonists that encouragement to which their spirit of forbearance so well entitles them; the whole case calls loudly for prompt Parliamentary interference and redress. By whom was that petition presented? Not by a Whig—not by an antagonist of the Colonial Office—not by a factious partisan—that petition was presented by John Masterman. What is the first name attached to it? George Lyall; and on looking over the list of signatures, I find the firm of Pattison and Son. Thus one of the Members for the city of London presents the petition; it is signed by two of the other Members for London—one a Whig, the other a Tory—and I believe that in every sentiment it expresses, my noble Friend, the other Member for London, will heartily concur. Here are marshalled, in an array of unexampled opulence, the bankers, the traders, the great merchants of the capital of the Empire and the metropolis of the commercial world. And what will be your answer to their statement? Will you tell me that your policy has been successful? Have not the brightest prospects been clouded? Has not one of the noblest fields ever opened to the genius of British enterprise withered, and been struck with sterility in the shade of the Colonial Office? Emigration has ceased; the revenue of the Colony is gone; the state is brankrupt; trade and agriculture are annihilated; the plough lies idle in the midst of immeasurable tracts of inexhaustible fertility. Amidst havens fit to contain the navies of England, a sail is never unfurled. The settler is converted into an exile, and he mourns over the recollections of the country which he will never behold again, and trembles for the security of his children, surrounded by savages whose ferocity has been inspirited by your weakness, and by whom the blood of Englishmen has been already profusely shed. Vehemently, but rightly, with passion, but with fatal truth, did the noble Lord, the Member for Sunderland exclaim, that against you the blood of Englishmen cried out. Who is there who has perused the account of the massacre at Wairoa, and of the death of the unfortunate and gallant Officer to whose merits the Committee have borne their melancholy and unavailing attestation — who does not associate, with a mournfulness, a sentiment of indignation against the presumptuous folly of the Minister to whose deplorable incapacity those disasters are to be ascribed? Let the men, who of those calamities shall be reckless—who are indifferent to our Colonial interests—who are careless of the lives of their countrymen, and who think that with a great mercantile association, associated for the best and most useful purposes, faith ought to be broken with impunity, vote against the Motion of my hon. Friend. But he will be sustained by every man who can appreciate Chatham's noble exclamation, "Ships, Colonies, and Commerce"—by every man who looks on a wise system of emigration as a remedy for some of the greatest evils of the country—by every man who thinks that some of the noblest islands in the ocean ought to to be turned to an account worthy of the purposes of Providence, which are impressed upon them, and of the great empires to which they are annexed—by every man who thinks that a great Department of the State ought not to be conducted in the spirit of splenetic authoritativeness and of fractious sophistication.

Sir James Graham

At the outset of the observations which I think it my duty to address to the House, I am anxious to express my concurrence, on two or three points, with some Gentlemen on both sides who have delivered their opinions in the course of this debate. In the first place, I am far from underrating the great importance of the subject we are now discussing, because I am deeply impressed with the immense national importance of the Colony of New Zealand. When I consider its peculiar position, the fertility of its soil, the excellence of its climate, and when I connect these advantages with our Colonial position generally, and with our Colonial trade, which is the foundation of our naval supremacy; moreover, when I remember the geographical position of these islands, placed, as was most truly said by the hon. and learned Gentleman who introduced this subject to our notice, as the key of the traffic between the Pacific and the China Seas, I do think that these islands constitute an appendage of great value, whose position and maintenance are of primary importance to the British Crown. I must also express my opinion when I consider the crowded multitudes within this narrow island, that every prospect of successful colonization, well regulated and ordered, is a prospect conducive to the interests of the people of this country, and affords hopes of future advantages by no means to be neglected. On these grounds, therefore, I entirely concur in estimating very highly the importance of these islands, and I concur also in an earnest desire that their possession should be maintained. I am also bound to express my conviction, in common with that stated by the hon. Member for Newcastle-under-Lyne (Mr. Colquhoun), that the present state of affairs in those islands is much to be deplored, and that it is not consistent with that firm maintenance of possession which I have stated I so earnestly desire. Now, having prefaced my observations with these admissions, I am very anxious at this late period of a protracted debate not to travel over ground which has already been trodden; I will go into no details I can possibly avoid. But at the same time I am afraid it may be necessary that I should trouble the House with some allusion to certain portions of the documents which have already been cited, though I assure the House I shall not trespass on their indulgence, in reference to these particulars, more than I can possibly help. I distinctly admit what was stated by the noble Lord the Member for Sunderland (Lord Howick), last night, that the real difficulty of the present state of affairs in New Zealand is to be traced to two causes—first, the unsettled question with reference to the proprietary rights to the land in that Colony; and, secondly, the absence of any efficient control over the lawless spirit recently manifested by the natives there. First, then, with respect to the disputed titles to property; and, here I would shortly sketch what has already been stated to the House by others who have preceded me, namely, that the title of the natives to the soil of New Zealand, as an independent nation, has been recognised from a very early period of our connexion with these islands, by consecutive Governments, responsible for the administration of the affairs of this country. I will not go so far back, although I might trace this recognition from 1814; but I will allude to the appointment of a Consul in 1833, under the Government of Lord Grey, when, as was candidly admitted by the noble Lord the Member for Sunderland, he himself was Under Secretary of State for the Colonial Department. I would also call to the recollection of the House that the flag of the New Zealanders was not only recognised, but I believe, under instructions from home, saluted by a ship of war belonging to His Majesty with every mark by which the recognition of the independence of that nation could be signalized with effect. I will not again call your attention to the precise words of the instructions given by Lord Normanby, when he was Colonial Minister. The noble Lord the Member for Sunderland last night admitted that these terms of recognition of independence, in his opinion, exceeded the bounds of prudence; at all events, he admitted that they were unqualified and absolute. I would rather now quickly pass over every antecedent recognition of independence, and come at once to the Treaty of Waitangi. That Treaty contains three stipulations—the First Article surrenders, on the part of the inhabitants of those islands, all the rights and powers of Sovereignty to the Crown of Great Britain. The Second Article, in consideration of that surrender, guarantees to the inhabitants the full, exclusive, and undisturbed possession of their lands and estates; and, in terms as extensive as can be used, recognises their titles to all the property they may collectively or individually possess, so long as it may be their wish and desire to retain it. The Third Article of that Treaty states that, in consideration of the surrender of the Sovereignty to the Queen of England, Her Majesty promises to extend to the natives of New Zealand her protection, and to invest them with all the rights and privileges of British subjects. That, Sir, is the Treaty which was entered into with the people of New Zealand by an Agent sent out from this country, and armed with proper authority for so doing; and that engagement was deliberately adopted by the noble Lord (Lord John Russell) then at the head of the Colonial Office. The right hon. Gentleman who has just sat down (Mr. Sheil) has dwelt with much emphasis upon the engagement entered into by the Crown with the New Zealand Company. It is necessary for me to advert to this subject now, inasmuch as the principal difficulty which my noble Friend (Lord Stanley) has experienced in this matter, has been to accomplish the task of reconciling the Treaty of Waitangi with the Charter granted to the New Zealand Company; and my noble Friend was not singular in this respect, for in a letter submitted to him on behalf of the New Zealand Company, this difficulty is thus stated:— It is impossible," says the writer, "to reconcile the missionary system with that of the New Zealand Company. The missionaries do all they can to prevent colonization from taking place, and use every endeavour to keep the New Zealanders away from the Europeans; whereas our object is to colonize the country, and to secure all the waste lands to the Crown. And observe also what the New Zealand Company says in this letter of the difficulty in reconciling the Treaty of Waitangi and their Charter. These are the words which they use:— There are two systems essentially antagonist to each other, and which cannot be reconciled. I entirely concur in the view taken by the New Zealand Company with respect to these two engagements. My noble Friend the Colonial Secretary found them both existing when he assumed his post, and his duty was to reconcile two engagements based upon antagonistic principles, and as far as was possible he has endeavoured to effect his object. The right hon. Gentleman (Mr. Sheil) contended, in the course of his speech, that, consistently with the engagements entered into by the Crown with the New Zealand Company, it was not just to call upon the latter to prove its title to the lands before the Court of Claims. Now the view taken by the right hon. Gentleman is at variance with the views adopted both by the Government and the New Zealand Company. I will first of all call the attention of the House to a letter written by the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Northampton (Mr. Vernon Smith), who was then the Under Secretary for the Colonies, dated the 2nd of December, 1840, and addressed to Mr. Somes, the Chairman of the New Zealand Company. In that letter the right hon. Gentleman enters upon the very point upon which the right hon. Member for Dungarvon has dwelt. In that letter the writer expresses the opinion of the noble Lord, the then Colonial Secretary, that the admission of the Company's claims to land was contingent and not absolute, in these words— With regard to all lands in the Colony acquired under any other title than that of grants made in the name and on behalf of Her Majesty, it is proposed that the titles of the claimants should be subjected to the investigation of a Commission to be constituted for that purpose. The basis of that inquiry will be the assertion, on behalf of the Crown, of a title to all lands situate in New Zealand which have heretofore been granted by the chiefs of those islands according to the customs of the country, and in return for some adequate consideration. Lord John Russell is not aware that any exception can arise to this general principle; but if so, every such exception will be considered on its own merits, and dealt with accordingly. That, let me observe, is the noble Lord's (Lord John Russell) own construction. The title of the New Zealand Company was not absolute, but the derivative title was to be proved before the Commission then about to be established. That construction was at first only acknowledged, not admitted, by Mr. Somes, in a letter addressed by him to the Colonial Office. In November, 1840, the noble Lord (Lord John Russell) addressed a letter to Sir George Gipps, conveying information of this arrangement with the New Zealand Company in these words:—

"Downing Street, November 21, 1840.

"Sir—I have received your despatch (No. 66) of the 29th of May last, transmitting a copy of the Address with which you opened the session of the Legislative Council of New South Wales, and in which you stated that a Bill to empower the Governor of New South Wales to appoint Commissioners to examine and report on claims to grants of land in New Zealand would be proposed for the consideration of that body. I transmit to you, herewith, copies of a correspondence which has passed between this Department and the gentlemen associated under the name of the New Zealand Company, with regard to the rights which may have been acquired by the Company, and the terms on which their corporate existence would be sanctioned by Her Majesty's Government. You will defer the execution of any powers that may be given to you by the Bill above alluded to, should it pass into a law, until you shall receive further instructions from me on the subject. You will understand, however, that it is not my intention to abandon the plan of instituting a Commission to inquire into the titles or claims to land in New Zealand; but that, on the contrary, I fully intend to carry it into execution."

Then, it is also important to see in what light this arrangement is understood by Colonel Wakefield, the Company's Agent in New Zealand, when first he receives information of the new Charter. Colonel Wakefield thus writes, on the 24th of August, 1841, to Governor Hobson:— Sir—On behalf of the New Zealand Company, with a view to carry out the arrangement entered into in November last by Her Majesty's Secretary of State for the Colonies and the Company, and to effect the settlement of the Company's possessions in Cook's Strait, by the purchases of land from them, upon the faith of that arrangement I have the honour to submit to Your Excellency's consideration the following observations and proposals. It is presumed in the arrangement that the Company has acquired a valid title from the natives to a very large territory on both sides of Cook's Strait, to which they lay claim, and to which their settlements are to be confined. The Colonial Minister, upon that presumption, authorizes the selection by the Company (within six months of the receipt of a copy of the arrangement by Your Excellency) of certain portions of the land within that territory, to the extent of four times the number of acres of pounds sterling expended by the Company, including 110,000 acres in the neighbourhood of Port Nicholson, and 50,000 acres in the neighbourhood of New Plymouth. The amount of acres thus to be selected will probably be found, when the account is taken of the Company's outlay up to that time, to exceed 600,000. At the same time a Commission, to be named by Her Majesty's Government, is to decide on the validity of the presumed purchases from the natives by the Company. Under these circumstances, and pending the investigations of the Commission, it seems desirable that purchasers of land from the Company, on the faith of this arrangement, should be enabled to locate themselves on land under Your Excellency's protection; and yet that no violation of the intentions of the Government, as regards titles derived from natives, should take place…… Provided always, that if any part of the said lands shall, upon due inquiry, be found not to have been validly purchased from them before the date of the alleged purchase by the New Zealand Company, full compensation shall be made to the natives, or the previous purchaser, as the case may be, by the New Zealand Company. The full compensation referred to was stated subsequently to be arranged by the Company's placing at Colonel Wakefield's disposal the sum of 500l. and 1,000l. acres of land for that purpose. If I mistake not, there is also a letter of the 10th of June, 1841, from Mr. Somes to Lord Stanley, still more explicit than those to which I have just referred. That letter is contained in page 572 of the Correspondence of 10th June, 1841. Now, the fact is not, as alleged, that any misunderstanding between my noble Friend the Colonial Secretary and the New Zealand Company took place immediately on his entering upon his duties, for none occurred until the end of 1842. I regret extremely that when my hon. Friend the Secretary for the Treasury, Mr. Cardwell, addressed the House, there were so few who heard him. But those hon. Members who did listen to his arguments will allow the force of his statement with respect to the binding nature of the Treaty of Waitangi, and its contrariety with the contract entered into by the Government with the New Zealand Company, and I shall not therefore repeat those arguments now; but I must call attention to the fact, that although, until the close of the year 1842, there was no difference or misunderstanding here between the New Zealand Company and the Colonial Office; yet it must be admitted that their Agent in the Colony, Colonel Wakefield, did decline to offer any proof of their claims to land before the Commission established in New Zealand for that purpose. The noble Lord the Colonial Secretary subsequently sent out a person qualified to act as a Commissioner in the examination of land-claims, and it was admitted that the person chosen had exercised his functions fairly. When Captain Fitzroy was appointed Governor of New Zealand, a distinct understanding was come to between the Company and the Colonial Office. The instructions given to Captain Fitzroy were express, that the contract with the New Zealand Company should be carried into execution. I cannot entirely relieve the Executive Government at home by imputing blame to Captain Fitzroy; at the same time, where Captain Fitzroy has disobeyed his instructions, I think, on the part of the Government, that I am entitled to claim the benefit of his recall, which has distinctly rested upon the allegation—an allegation which has been proved — that in many important particulars he has not obeyed the instructions of the Government at home. And here I may observe, in reference to a very important point in this discussion, that the order to Captain Fitzroy was express that the contract of 1843 should be carried into execution, and the Company be put in possession of the land that should be awarded by Mr. Pennington. At the same time there was another condition at all times recognised by the Company as antecedent to the second agreement of 1843, and which was part of the original agreement of 1840 with the noble Lord, viz., that the selection of land was to be made by the agents of the Company within certain specified limits, and that having made their selection they should put in their claim. Now, the Government had reason to believe, and they were informed by Captain Fitzroy, that since he arrived in New Zealand no selection had been made by the Company's Agent, and that consequently no application had been refused. It has been said by my hon. Friend the Member for Newcastle-under-Lyne (Mr. Colquhoun), that great allowance is to be made for Captain Fitzroy in the difficult situation in which he was placed. I readily allow that, in justice to Captain Fitzroy; but it is true that several of his acts have been in direct violation of his positive instructions. I refer more especially to his issue of inconvertible paper; to his refusal to obey the instructions of the noble Lord opposite (repeated by my noble Friend at the head of the Colonies), to embody the settlers, and under certain restrictions the natives, in a militia. The instructions were express on both these points, but they were disobeyed. With respect, also, to the revenue of the Colony, I am bound to state that the remission of all customs' duties is a measure which, as explained to the Government, does appear to them to be indefensible. At the same time, it must be remembered that the difficulty of levying duties of customs along a coast extending, I think, 3,000 miles, even with a force infinitely larger than that which was at the disposal of the Governor of New Zealand, is so great that it renders the duty difficult to perform. Still, it cannot be denied that the remission absolutely of all duties of customs without an appeal to the Home Government, or without an opportunity of remonstrance from the Home Government, does appear a very unjustifiable act. Now, the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Dungarvon (Mr. Sheil) commented upon several divisions which took place in the Committee appointed last year upon this subject; and he appeared to be of opinion that those divisions turned upon a point impugning or condemning the conduct of my noble Friend. I had not the advantage of being on that Committee, and I only know what occurred from the document to which the right hon. Gentleman referred; but, if I mistake not, the two divisions relate to the first two Resolutions adopted by that Committee. The first impugns the acts of the former Government, including the Treaty of Waitangi; the other impugns the conduct of the local Government in matters which were not immediately under the cognizance of the Home Government. I cannot, therefore, admit the construction of the right hon. Gentleman that they turned upon points condemnatory of the policy of my noble Friend. But complaints have been made both by my hon. Friend the Member for Newcastle-under-Lyne, and by the hon. Member for Lambeth (Mr. Hawes), of the delay and of the mode in which business is conducted in the Colonial Department. I admit that the weight of that business is most oppressive; at the same time, I demur entirely to the remedy suggested by the hon. Member for Lambeth, and acquiesced in by my hon. Friend the Member for Newcastle-under-Lyne; and I must say that my official experience leads me to the conclusion that the appointment of a Board nominally to aid that Department would not expedite the transaction of business. However specious the remedy may be, I am certain that it would not be conducive to the transaction of public business, nor do I think that its appointment would be wise upon constitutional grounds.

Mr. Hanes

said, that his remedy was simply this, that he proposed that the Colonies should have a local self-government. The only duty which he had ventured to shadow out for the Board was this, that it should collect useful information relative to the Colonies, which information should be periodically published for the use of the public.

Sir J. Graham

I am sorry to misrepresent the hon. Member; but, at all events, my hon. Friend the Member for Newcastle-under Lyne fell into the same error with myself, and he even adopted what both he and I believed the hon. Member to have recommended. The hon. Gentleman, however, did observe, and I think he will admit that he made this remark—that the Colonial Office attended a great deal too much to home interests. Now, I hope the House will pardon me if, without meaning to say anything in the least offensive to the New Zealand Company, I remind the House of the powerful influence attached to that Company—a matter to which I think I may allude when a charge of attending too much to home interests has been made against my noble Friend. I will not enumerate the numbers, but I see upon both sides of the House a number of Members of this House who are avowedly Members of that Company. The ramifications of that interest are most extensive, and also most powerful; and in passing I would observe, that if my noble Friend at the head of the Colonies had yielded, as the hon. Member for Lambeth says he is accustomed to yield, to home influence and to home interests, he would have experienced a much more quiet life than he has enjoyed for the last few years; the whole of the discussion now entered on might have been spared, though by yielding to home interests he might indeed have sacrificed the interests of 100,000 New Zealanders in the antipodes. Had he consulted his own ease and quiet he might have gained a dishonourable repose; but he would have adopted a course exactly the reverse of that which he has pursued. Now, I would further observe in passing, that I think the hon. and learned Gentleman the Member for Liskeard (Mr. C. Buller), was also somewhat unjust in the comments which he made upon the Colonial Office. He said that the noble Lord the Member for Tiverton (Lord Palmerston) suffered no nonsense which might be addressed from the Colonial Office to the Foreign Office, but put it at once aside and treated it as undeserving his notice. Now, Sir, I must say, that considering that the noble Lord the Member for London (Lord John Russell) presided over the Colonial Office at the time to which the hon. and learned Member referred, and, without offence, I might say, when Mr. Stephen was Under Secretary, whatever other charge might be brought against it, nonsense was not likely to emanate from the Colonial Department. I am perfectly ready to admit that disputes with reference to the past are of infinitely minor importance when contrasted with what is the future policy that is to be pursued. That is a matter of the utmost importance as concerns both the British and Colonial interests, and I think that it is impossible to have heard the speech of the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Coventry (Mr. Ellice) at the commencement of the debate this evening, and not to have been impressed with the manly sense which characterized it. It was a speech which, in my opinion, deserves a clear and explicit answer from Her Majesty's Government. As far as I am concerned, I shall endeavour to deal distinctly with the important questions which were put by him. I think that he and the House are entitled to an explicit declaration of this kind. The first question put by him was, "What is your construction of the Treaty of Waitangi?" To that I say, that our construction is—first, that Her Majesty is entitled to all the rights of Sovereignty in that island, fairly ceded and to be exercised with fidelity on Her part, in strict observance of the engagements contracted with the inhabitants. Secondly, I conceive those engagements to be, that the inhabitants shall be protected in their rights of possession of their lands and property so long as they shall desire to retain them, the right of pre-emption to all lands, if the inhabitants should desire to part with them, being vested in the Crown. And thirdly, that on condition of those cessions on the part of the inhabitants, they shall enjoy all the rights and privileges of British subjects. That I consider to be the arrangement. To that Her Majesty's faith is bound, and I think that that Treaty must be religiously observed. Now, this brings me to a point of some importance. I do not wish to be over nice in my criticism upon words, but still, words are on these occasions significant, frequently most important, and are not to be disregarded. The words of the Treaty, I think, are, "lands in the possession of." In the Letters Patent there is an important departure from the terms of the Treaty. The terms used in the Treaty are "possession;" whilst, in the Charter of Incorporation, they are "lands occupied or enjoyed." Now, I beg the House to remember, that by the act of the local Government, approved by the noble Lord, a positive prohibition was imposed on the sale of "occupied lands" by the natives. Now, the noble Lord when he prohibited the sale of occupied lands, and yet had stipulated for the right of pre-emption on the part of the Crown, must certainly have contemplated the right of buying something which the natives could sell. They could not sell "occupied lands;" he must, therefore, have contemplated the right of purchase by the Crown of "unoccupied lands;" and, if that right existed consistently with the Treaty, if there was the right of purchasing "unoccupied lands," then the noble Lord must have contemplated and have recognised the right (subject to proof before a competent tribunal) of the natives to part with and sell those "unoccupied lands;" for unless there was the right to sell, there could be no right to purchase. The right hon. Gentleman asked what we intended to do with respect to land? We intend to do that which Captain Fitzroy was directed to do, but which he omitted to do, namely, to call upon all claimants, whether natives or settlers, to prove their titles and register their lands within a certain limited time. At the expiration of that time all parties claiming, who fail to appear and to register, will forfeit their title; and the right of Sovereignty accrued under the Treaty of Waitangi, and the right of the Crown to all unregistered lands is indisputable. Further, I conceive it is quite open for the deliberate consideration of the Government, in reference to circumstances which cannot now be exactly foreseen, after the registration shall have been enforced, to adopt the recommendation given by the hon. Member for Liskeard himself regarding unoccupied lands in Canada, and to impose a moderate tax upon waste lands. I am satisfied, by the application of that principle, and in strict conformity with the claim, that the Crown will become possessed of large portions of unoccupied lands. The next question was, how we propose to deal with the New Zealand Company? Our instructions will be positive to complete the contract entered into by Lord Stanley, in 1843, with the Company; and to put them as promptly as possible in possession of land, within the limits assigned, of which they should make selection, and of which they should claim to be put in possession, having made that selection. In strict accordance with the arrangement of 1843, they would be put in possession of a primâ facie and contingent title, subject only to the proof of a better title vesting in other parties. The remission of the customs, I have already said, was an ill-advised act: in other respects, affairs in the Colony are in such a state, that I am quite convinced it is necessary to place an increase of force at the disposal of the Government. Orders have been given to send from hence a regiment to New Zealand; and in the mean time, we have reason to know that the Governor in New Zealand has obtained from New Holland a considerable augmentation of force. We are asked, what I admit is more important than any of the questions to which as yet I have given an answer, what are the institutions under which New Zealand is to be governed? And I say at once, it is the wish of the Government here, and it has been the direction to the Government there, to give, upon application being made, municipal institutions to all the settlements of the New Zealand Company. If there be any defect in the orders already given, directions will be given to the Governor, subject to a discretion to be exercised by him, to enlarge the extent of the municipal powers; and not only to enlarge those powers, but to increase the area within which these institutions might be established. It has been stated, and truly, that in strict accordance with the best principles of colonization, concentration is not desirable; that dispersion of the settlements is consistent with safety; and that, as you disperse and multiply your municipal institutions, you secure popular local government, and the means of self-government, within those districts. But it will be said, that this is still an imperfect popular government; and that, after all, representation may be necessary. I am not prepared to combat that proposition; but I must ask the House to consider the peculiar circumstances of the case. By the Treaty of Waitangi, the natives are entitled to all the rights and privileges of British subjects. If you adopt the representative form of government, you must either admit the natives to a share in the representation, or exclude them. If you admit them, I am afraid, in the present temper of the inhabitants, and I will say too in their present state of civilization, it would be quite premature to adopt such a course. On the other hand, if you exclude them, you will be acting inconsistently with the engagements of the Treaty; and at all events, such exclusion, so far from being a measure of peace, would, I think, greatly increase the discord and confusion. At all events, I am satisfied that we ought not at the present moment to give any positive pledge upon the subject. The right hon. Gentleman asked, what was to be the law of succession of lauded property, and, more especially, was the law of primogeniture to be retained? I think he could hardly press the Government, at the present moment, to enter into any discussion upon the law of primogeniture, or the propriety of applying it to an infant Colony. I believe I am right in saying that, as a general rule of law, British subjects, however, distant the quarter of the globe in which they may be, when they emigrate as settlers under the British Crown, carry with them the rights of British law and of British institutions. The adherence to that law was the rule, the departure from it was the exception; and it should be a rare exception, and subject always to the decision of the law advisers of the Crown in the mother country; and a more serious responsibility could not be incurred by the Government, than that involved by the subversion, in any instance, of the law of England, which was the birthright and the inheritance of British subjects. I have endeavoured to be as explicit in my answers as the right hon. Gentleman was pointed in his questions. With regard to the errors committed by the Governor, on whom I should be sorry to bear with harshness, I can only say that the Government have marked their sense in the most decided manner by his recall. The question then turns to his successor. The right hon. Gentleman the Member for Coventry (Mr. Ellice) said, that he thought that no appointment would be a judicious appointment which was not made by the selection of some gentleman now in England, with whom oral communication might take place. Let the House contrast that opinion with the advice tendered last night by the noble Lord the Member for Sunderland (Viscount Howick). The right hon. Gentleman contemplated minute and specific instructions; and he was also of opinion that some indiscretion had been committed by my noble Friend, in not giving more specific instructions to Captain Fitzroy. He also said there had been much dispute with reference to the instructions of the Government, which would have been avoided had their instructions been written more minutely. [Mr. Ellice: Had the instructions been understood more perfectly by both parties.] The right hon. Gentleman said, that it would have been desirable that these instructions had been understood; and that, to that end, they should have been more minutely written. Now, what was the advice of the noble Lord the Member for Sunderland? The noble Lord thought that the Government should choose an able and experienced Governor, whom they should not too much fetter with positive instructions, but that they should tell him the particulars in which his predecessor had erred, and point out to him what was wrong; but that, at the same time, they should leave to him the largest possible discretion. I entirely concur in that advice. We have told you that Captain Grey is the person who has been selected; and it is not denied, or attempted to be denied, that he is a person possessing both ability and experience. Indeed, if I wanted proof of the fact, I find it in a special reference to that Gentleman in the Resolutions before the House, which especially recommend that the course adopted by Captain Grey, in the treatment of the aborigines, should be the example and the model of the treatment of the natives of New Zealand. The only objections made to him by the noble Lord (Lord Howick) were, his youth and want of rank. Of the first of these objections I must say, it does appear to me that youth is rather a necessary qualification for successfully grappling with the difficulties of the case. As to his want of rank, the noble Lord could hardly insist upon that objection, with reference to a person possessing all the other qualifications requisite for the post to which he was appointed. [Viscount Howick: Rank in the service.] I do not think it necessary, provided he possessed all the other necessary qualifications, that he should be possessed of any very high rank in the service. I am very unwilling to detain the House a moment longer; but I should be unjust to my noble Friend (Lord Stanley), were I to omit to state to the House what my strong impression is respecting the present Motion. My noble Friend has had great difficulties to contend with, in the midst of which, however, he has endeavoured to reconcile conflicting interests and feelings. If he has erred, he has erred on the side of considering with kindness, caution, and solicitude, the interests of the unprotected natives of New Zealand. ["Hear, hear."] I do not admit that he has erred; but if he has, his motives cannot be impugned; they have been kind, they have been generous, they have been humane. What is the proposition now made? The proposition now made in the speech of the hon. Member for Liskeard, which cannot be forgotten, is to condemn the policy of my noble Friend; or, in the language of the right hon. Gentleman who has just sat down, to pass a censure upon his "splenetic authoritativeness and fractious sophistication." It is, therefore, distinctly a vote of censure upon my noble Friend. It will be for the House to consider whether the difficulties of the Colonial Government, which have been felt and acknowledged by the ablest men who have filled that Department—among whom I have to name the noble Lord the Member for London (Lord J. Russell)—it will be for the House to consider whether these difficulties will be diminished by the House assuming to itself in Committee all the functions of the Colonial Administration. Certainly, Sir, my noble Friend and his Colleagues cannot but regard such a vote as a most serious imputation upon his and their policy; and it remains for the House to say whether, under such circumstances as I have mentioned, it will pass that vote of censure.

Lord John Russell

When I addressed the House at the early part of the Session, I stated that I hoped the time would come when, instead of entering into the particular controversy which was carrying on, and had been carried on for some time, between the Colonial Department and the New Zealand Company, we should address ourselves to the question of the difficulties in which that young Colony is placed; and to endeavour, as the chief advisers of the Crown, and as part of the Legislature of this country, to rescue that Colony from what appeared to be impending evil. I stated at the same time the glorious destiny to which I believed New Zealand to be called; and I expressed a hope that nothing would occur to mar the early prospects of the Colony, or prevent it from pursuing an unbroken career to the fulfilment of that anticipation. I was in hopes that we were in this debate mainly to consider that question; but the course taken by Ministers has put it out of my power to confine myself even principally to that question. The hon. Gentleman the Secretary to the Treasury, more by insinuation and inference, and the right hon. Baronet the Secretary for the Home Department, more directly, have stated that, if any difficulties have arisen—if the noble Lord the Secretary for the Colonies have found himself embarrassed, it has been in consequence of the mistakes of his predecessor. I am obliged, therefore, when the Government comes forward, and, as the explanation of its present difficulties, throws the blame of its embarrassments upon me—I am obliged to ask the attention of the House to some of the details of my conduct in the administration of the affairs of the Colonial Office. In the performance of the task thus imposed upon me, I cannot but observe, that allusion has been made to the manner I discharged my duties, in words that are too complimentary, and which have fallen to-night both from my right hon. Friend the Member for Coventry, with whom I have long been in habits of friendship and of political connexion, and also from the hon. Gentleman the Member for Newcastle-under-Lyne, with whom I never had any intimate acquaintance, and never any political alliance. But, holding the reverse of the opinions which these two Members have been pleased to express of my conduct, the right hon. Gentleman opposite has declared that I made such a gross blunder in making two incompatible engagements—the one with the New Zealanders, and the other with a Company consisting of mercantile men and gentlemen resident in this country—that these two engagements were not only difficult to execute, but that it was impossible to reconcile them. If I had done so—if I had fallen into such errors—I should not only be worse than others who have filled the same office; but if I had made such gross mistakes, I should be entirely unfitted for the high office I held. I now beg to put the House in possession of the facts of the case. The first fact to which I think it necessary to call the attention of the House is, that in the year 1839, the islands of New Zealand were recognised as an independent State. Captain Hobson went out there, with full powers to act as Her Majesty's Consul in those islands; and they were taken under the protection of the Crown of England. He then succeeded in effecting the Treaty of Waitangi. Looking at these circumstances, we are to ask ourselves whether or not the islands of New Zealand form a part of the dominions of the Crown of England? The Treaty is not long; yet the hon. Gentleman opposite did not take the trouble to read the whole of it—especially with regard to the Second Article, he did not state exactly the whole substance of that Article; and I shall now venture, often as it has been referred to, to read it to the House. It is this:— Her Majesty the Queen of England confirms and guarantees to the chiefs and tribes of New Zealand, and to the respective families and individuals thereof, the full, exclusive, and undisturbed possession of their lands and estates, forests, fisheries, and other properties which they may collectively or individually possess, so long as it is their wish and desire to retain the same in their possession. But the chiefs of the united tribes, and the individual chiefs, yield to Her Majesty the exclusive right of pre-emption over such lands as the proprietors thereof may be disposed to alienate, at such prices as may be agreed upon between the respective proprietors and persons appointed by Her Majesty to treat with them on that behalf. It is evident that this Article consists of two parts. The first asserts the rights of the chiefs and tribes of New Zealand to the property of which they are possessed; and the other asserts for Her Majesty Her right of pre-emption to any land, or any lands, which the New Zealanders may be disposed to part with or sell. The hon. Member for Westminster (Captain Rous) had an Amendment on the Paper, to the effect that the Treaty of Waitangi should be maintained; but in the latter part of his speech, he very much complained of the latter part of this Article. But if our conduct is to be examined touching this Treaty, let us have the whole of the Article brought before the House. Let not merely the chiefs and tribes of New Zealand have everything constituted into their properly which they possess, but let us look to the other part of the Article. Let not the chiefs and tribes of New Zealand say—"Everything that can be called or construed into property is to be ours; and we are to have the liberty and power of parting with it, when and how we like, to any European parties who may endeavour by land speculations to get hundreds, or thousands, or millions of acres into their possession." Let us not take Captain Fitzroy's departure from the terms of the Treaty—let us not take his total abandonment of the Second Article—but let us have the whole Treaty, and let us show that it is for the true interests of the New Zealanders themselves to maintain the second part of the Treaty as well as the first. With regard to the meaning of the first part of the Article, which the hon. Gentleman (Mr. Cardwell) says is inconsistent with the second, I say that it is consistent with the interpretation put upon other Treaties—that we are entitled to consider it as we do other Treaties made with Foreign Powers when a final possession, as in Canada, is secured to you. In looking at an agreement of this kind, we should take for our guide the plain and natural interpretation which would be put upon it in Europe, and which would be consonant with the acknowledged principles of public law amongst civilized nations. We ought, in coming to a vote on a question of this kind, to ask ourselves what has been the course pursued with reference to Canada, and Trinidad, and Demerara, and others of our Colonies and Dependencies? If you were dealing with the most civilized people on earth, you would not say that they had a property in all the wild land which happened to be contained within an island that they partly inhabited. We did not proceed upon any such principle in dealing with the Canadians in the war of 1756. Have you ever said anything of the kind, or done so with regard to Demerara? No, Sir, you have said, according to the general law of European nations, they should have the possession of that which they enjoyed, but with regard to the waste lands, these are the domain of the Crown, according to the law of England. It is hardly necessary, therefore, for the sake of this argument, to go, as Sir George Gipps did, into considerable research as to the maxims laid down by public writers on public law—to refer to Vattel—or to quote the doctrines laid down by Mr. Wheedon and others—to show the proper and obvious meaning of the terms of the Treaty, and the general sense of public law. I rest upon the proper meaning of the terms, and the general sense in which they would be received throughout Europe. The hon. Gentleman the Secretary to the Treasury quoted various paragraphs to show the sense I attached to this Article of the Treaty to which I have referred. He quoted a paragraph from the instructions given by Lord Normanby, in which he stated that the waste lands were to be obtained on fair terms, and with the consent of the natives. He also quoted another passage, in which I said I saw no reason for receding from the instructions given by my noble Friend. But it so happened that I stated something more than the right hon. Gentleman opposite quoted, and which he might have found in another part of the same page, where I said, that within the domains of the Crown, the sale and settlement of all those domains should proceed according to the rules laid down in the Royal Instructions and the Letters Patent. I should have thought that if the hon. Gentleman wished to state this case fairly and fully to the House, that he would have gone to the Royal Instructions and the Letters Patent. He would have found in the Royal Charter that I specially referred to land "in the actual occupation" of the natives; and in the Instructions I referred to the natives "in actual enjoyment of the land." Now, I do not hesitate to say, that it is by the aid of such guidance as these passages afford us, that we can arrive at sound conclusions with respect to the meaning of the Treaty, and the terms on which we ought to govern the Colony of New Zealand. The name of Mr. Spain has frequently been mentioned in the course of this debate, and the hon. Member the Secretary of the Treasury has spoken of him as a country attorney. If he so spoke of that gentleman in those terms by way of disparaging him, I can only say—

Mr. Cardwell

rose to explain. The noble Lord the Member for Sunderland had spoken of pettifogging distinctions in the Courts of New Zealand; and what he had said was, that under peculiar circumstances they did deserve to be accused of drawing pettifogging distinctions. He had said nothing intentionally to disparage Mr. Spain.

Lord J. Russell

I did not accuse the hon. Gentleman of charging Mr. Spain with pettifogging distinctions; but if it be the part of a clever attorney to meet certain cases by shifts and evasions, and trying to avoid the real point at issue, the hon. Gentleman opposite showed as much of the knowledge of the art last night as any attorney possibly could. The hon. Gentleman then went on with his argument, and in this respect he said that the first agreement was incompatible with the agreement afterwards made. Before I come to that point I must say that on these terms, "fully acquired and enjoyed," I do not think that in carrying out the Instructions there could have been any difficulty with respect to them, from the Treaty of Waitangi. I admit that there must be a fair, a liberal, and generous construction of the Treaty; there must be such a construction that, if the natives can show that the said property was in them and enjoyed by them, it should be left to them; but if you interpret the Treaty of Waitangi as you have interpreted it, you make it at variance with the interpretations of the whole law of Europe—you do this in favour of savages, and of men who are still remaining cannibals, and for them you give a wide interpretation, and such as was never thought of with respect to any former Treaty. I do not call that a fair interpretation; on the contrary, I call it an extravagant interpretation, not only fatal to your Colony, not only preventing your settlement of it, but one giving up the natives to be the prey of every land-jobber. We may reckon, perhaps, 100,000 persons in New Zealand of the aboriginal tribes, and 100,000 square miles, and about one person to every square mile; but still there are 20,000,000 of acres on the Middle island, and it is stated in one of the Papers that, though there are not more than 1,500 persons in any way inhabitants, yet still that in some way, on an island as large as England and part of Scotland, there is not an acre on which a native is not found to have a claim. Is not that an extravagant interpretation of the Treaty? I have shown that in the words I advised the Queen to use, in the Letters of Instruction and in the Charter I gave no such interpretation. I hope that this House will not sanction such an interpretation; and I hope that the noble Lord the Secretary for the Colonies will not sanction an interpretation that would be not only injurious to the country that has founded the Colony, but abandon the natives, under the notion of giving them the benefit of what I cannot but call an extravagant interpretation to the depredations of land-jobbers. Such being the state of the case, and having agreed that the country should be governed according to the Letters Patent, having drawn them up for the good of the natives, and having given instructions with regard to the Treaty of Waitangi, I must own that I had not the foresight to perceive that there would arise numberless disputes with respect to all the waste lands of New Zealand. I recollect that one of the difficulties that was mentioned to me was as to making a survey of the islands, and in having surveys made. As to the title to the lands, I thought with Lord Normanby, that a liberal interpretation should be given to the contracts made with the natives, by which large tracts would be immediately ready to be disposed of. Was I singular in this interpretation? So far from that being the case, Major Bunbury, one of the persons who, under the orders of Captain Hobson, went about to obtain signatures to the Treaty of Waitangi, in the Middle island, stated to Governor Hobson that there was such a vast extent of waste land, that allotments could be made immediately, and that surveys ought to be commenced forthwith in order that settlers might be placed in possession of the land. I believe, then, that my interpretation was generally adopted in this country. Then some time afterwards a question arose as to the New Zealand Company. My first acquaintance—if I may so call it—with the New Zealand Company was not made under the most pleasant auspices. Soon after I came into the Colonial Office, I saw—I think in a newspaper—articles purporting to be articles of agreement between certain persons who were going out, or who had gone out, to New Zealand, by which they bound themselves to submit to certain laws, being in spirit the laws of England, criminal and civil. It struck me that such an agreement could not be consistent with the laws of England. I gave them notice that if they carried out that agreement, I should proceed against them. They took the opinion of my learned Friend Sir Thomas Wilde; they found that I was right; they cancelled the agreement, and the persons who went to New Zealand did not act upon it. This circumstance placed me in a relation towards the Company which it might be supposed would not promote very cordial feeling between us. The hon. Secretary to the Treasury seems to suppose that my disposition was, at one time, peculiarly favourable to this Company. Now, I will tell him what view I took of the Company. I was of the same opinion that Mr. Huskisson once expressed, that these commercial companies formed in this country are higly useful for the purpose of colonization. There are many things the Government cannot do of themselves; as, for instance, the collecting the emigrants, placing them together in companies, and providing for their location in a Colony: these are things which can be much better done by a company than by the Government; and as it was my wish to see the Colony of New Zealand fairly and prosperously settled, and as I found there had been a quarrel going on for some time between the Colonial Department of the Government and the New Zealand Company, as soon as the authority of the Crown was declared to be paramount in New Zealand, I seized the opportunity offered by the hon. Member for Dartmouth (Mr. Somes) of endeavouring to allay those difficulties which had arisen, and by some practical measure to form such an agreement, that the Government on the one hand, and the New Zealand Company on the other, might both work for the benefit of the country, and, at the same time, for the welfare of the people of New Zealand. The right hon. Gentleman says that the agreement formed with the Company was totally inconsistent, and wholly incompatible with the Treaty of Waitangi. According to my view of the Treaty of Waitangi, I hold that that is not the case, nor was this the opinion of the Committee of last year. The opinion of that Committee was, that the sense which was put upon the Treaty of Waitangi was not essential to its due construction; and that opinion was adopted by the Committee on the Motion of no political friend of mine, but, as has been said by my right hon. and learned Friend near me (Mr. Sheil), of the noble Lord the Member for South Lancashire (Lord Francis Egerton), who is deservedly and justly respected in this House, and who took a most impartial course as a Member of that Committee. I think, then, the right hon. Gentleman is not supported in the view he takes in respect to this imputed inconsistency. But let us see in what way it was inconsistent. The fact is, as the right hon. Gentleman has stated, that I was under the impression that the Agent of the New Zealand Company had purchased a large quantity of land from the natives of New Zealand, and that that land they were ready to surrender to the Crown, and to admit that all rights acquired by them under that purchase should cease, and the whole should be subject to the pleasure of the Crown. I, on the other hand, was willing to grant them terms similar to those granted to other parties and other companies, who have colonized other Colonies, or have carried emigrants to New South Wales. I was willing to admit that in proportion to the expense they had incurred, they should receive a number of acres of land; that for every five shillings so expended they should receive an acre of land. But be it observed, there was not in this agreement a word as to the number of acres which they had purchased. I should not give a fair interpretation of that agrement if I said otherwise: But, then, to advert again to this charge of inconsistency between that agreement and the Treaty of Waitangi — if they had this quantity of land, or if there were these millions of acres, which I supposed, of waste lands in New Zealand, there could be no difficulty whatever on the part of the Crown in fulfilling that agreement with the Company. How can it be said, then, that the one course was incompatible with the other, and that it was impossible to fulfil the terms of the agreement without violating the Treaty? To support his view the right hon. Gentleman must give a sense to the Treaty which I have not yet heard ascribed to it, extravagant as many of the interpretations given of it have been. The question, then, was, what we were bound to, and what I considered we were bound to by that agreement. I agree that the impression I had of that obligation, and which I believe the New Zealand Company had, and which, as I suppose, the Company's Agent in New Zealand had also, was, that they had a title to a quantity of land far exceeding any number of acres that could be allotted to them under an award, and that their claim would fall below the number of acres they possessed, leaving a quantity of surplus land which they would have to surrender to the Crown. That was my impression certainly. And I have every reason to believe, too, that the New Zealand Company acted fairly and bonâ fide in the matter. Their accounts from New Zealand, which have not been concealed, but are open, and have been made public, induced them, I think, to believe that they were making a bargain handsome on their part, in surrendering the land they claimed on the ground of purchases from the natives. But suppose a case should occur which I certainly did not contemplate, and it should be found that these purchases of land were not good; and suppose it should turn out that some of them, or almost all of them, had been made from persons who had themselves no title to dispose of these lands; and that others should come forward and prove they had a just and equitable title to them; and that, consequently, the Crown could not take possession of them; it is obvious at once that the Crown, in that case, could not fulfil the literal conditions of the agreement by making the grants of land out of the territory of New Zealand in which the Company had settled. But I do not think the Crown would thereby be released from its agreement, for that agreement was to this effect:—That, considering the Company had expended so much money, partly in preparing ships, partly in taking out emigrants to the Colony, partly in preparing stores, partly in making purchases of land, and in other ways; therefore, so much land should be granted to them. And in this respect the agreement resembled many of the agreements which have been made by the Colonial Government of New South Wales, in which they say to parties, if you will bring, at your own expense, labourers to this Colony, we will apply the purchase money which you would else have to pay, to your credit, and we will apportion you a number of acres, in proportion to the expense you have incurred in bringing colonists here. The agreement I made with the New Zealand Company was of a similar kind, and conceived in a similar spirit. It was not an agreement stating, that whereas the New Zealand Company have 10,000,000 of acres, and will surrender them, except a certain portion to the Crown; therefore that portion shall be granted by the Crown to the Company. That was not the nature of the agreement; although the purchase of land was stated as one item of the expense incurred by the Company, it was not that alone upon which the agreement was founded; but upon the whole of the expenses taken in a lump, and not merely on that of the purchase of land. The right hon. Gentleman may be correct in saying this was an imprudent agreement, and that I had not sufficiently ascertained the nature of the purchases made; but that he should say there was a want of consistency between that agreement and the Treaty of Waitangi, passes my comprehension, for I can see nothing incompatible in the one with the other. Then, Sir, what is the nature of the obligation the Government have incurred? It appears to me—I am not now going into the acts of the local Government; but supposing all those acts to have been unexceptionable, and that they found no fair and just claim on the part of the New Zealand Company to these lands so purchased—it appears to me that the Government might fairly say we cannot literally fulfil this agreement, at least we cannot fulfil it as soon as the Company expect that we should; but the mistake has been their own mistake, they have fallen into an error which we have fallen into also. The lands cannot be granted to them, because we find them in the occupation and enjoyment of the natives. But with this exception, as to the particular spot and as to the particular time, the Government is in my opinion bound by the terms of the agreement. I say execute the Treaty of Waitangi in its spirit and in its letter. Do not injure the aborigines in any way; but preserving good faith with them does not necessarily entitle you to break faith with the New Zealand Company. I confess I cannot see the logic of the proposition that it does. And, in expressing my dissent from that proposition, I must be permitted to refer to a letter from the noble Lord the present Colonial Secretary, in which it appears that that noble Lord made an agreement with the New Zealand Company before Governor Fitzroy went out, and that agreement was to the effect that the Company should be allowed to be put at once in possession of the lands, reserving the question of title to be afterwards decided, but giving them merely possession with a primâ facie title. But it appears also, that before Captain Fitzroy went out, another correspondence took place between that gallant Officer and the noble Lord, which was wholly concealed from the New Zealand Company. I will not now go into the question of whether that was fair treatment of the Company on the part of the noble Lord or not, but I must take the liberty of alluding to the statement made by the noble Lord in the course of that correspondence. The noble Lord says— On the fifth point I quite concur with you, that there is no reason for saying that the Government is indebted to the Company for any given quantity of land; or that any specified quantity of land is due to them from the Government (unless under direct purchases from itself); or that the Government is bound to make compensation to the Company for its expenditure. Now I consider that the Government, with the exceptions and modifications I have stated, is bound to put the Company in possession of the land, or make compensation to them for not getting it. That is a fair claim on the part of the Company, and I do not think there is anything, either in the Treaty of Waitangi, or in the terms of the agreement, that should relieve the Government from the obligation. I will now state shortly what occurs to me with respect to the course pursued by the local Government. I think the local Government seems to have intended, both under Captain Fitzroy and former Governors, to act honestly and with the most benevolent intentions. They appear to have wished to consult, so far as they could possibly do so, the interests and welfare of the aborigines. It was a strong impression on my mind while at the Colonial Office, as well as upon that of my noble Friend Lord Normanby—an impression that has obtained with every Colonial Secretary, I believe—that the aborigines of many countries have suffered great calamities at the hands of the whites by whom those countries were colonized; and when, in the case of New Zealand, I found that a new Colony was to be formed, my mind was directed to the means of preserving the aboriginal inhabitants, and of securing their welfare and their union with the colonists. Having this impression on my mind, no doubt my instructions tended strongly to enforce on the attention of the Governors a due regard to the interests of the aborigines. It was impossible, I think, at any time, to read the accounts of the miserable remains of the aborigines in New Holland, North America, and other places, without being touched with horror at the sufferings those unfortunate races must have undergone before they were reduced to their present state. That being the impression of the Government at home, you cannot wonder that the local Government and the Commissioners of Land Claims, and every other person acting with authority in New Zealand, should have been impressed with the same feeling, and be, above all, anxious, in whatever arrangements they might make, to secure the interests of these people. But I own, I think, that those Colonial Authorities, though not erring in point of feeling, though not mistaken in point of good intention, have, nevertheless, erred greatly in point of judgment, in admitting such claims on the part of the natives as we have heard spoken of in the course of this discussion; in admitting every sort of claim—the claims of those who once held the land, but had been driven out by other tribes—the claims of those by whom they were driven out—the claims of slaves in some instances, and of those whose claim was, that they had exterminated those tribes by whom the land was originally held. To entertain claims of such a nature, and enter upon them as if they were to be decided like regular lawsuits, was, in my opinion, a great error in point of judgment and policy. Now, Sir, let the House see what these people are, and what is their character, according to the testimony of an unprejudiced witness against them, the hon. and gallant Member for Westmiuster (Captain Rous). "I will show you," said that hon. and gallant Officer, "what fine people these aborigines are;" and accordingly he tells us of a certain chief who, in company with one person only, went into the camp of a hostile tribe, and having got away without detection, afterwards returned and exterminated them all. This is the proof the hon. and gallant Officer gives us of the fine feelings of these New Zealand races, and of their high and noble character. [Captain Rous: I merely stated it as a proof of the courage of these people.] I by no means intend to deny or undervalue the gallantry and courage of the act; but what I mean to point out is, that this very person, whose character is so lauded by the hon. and gallant Member, did evince all those qualities of horrid barbarity which belong to those races, and that they do desire to exterminate one another; and if we were to write a New Zealand Blackstone, instead of the headings of title by devise, title by marriage, and title by descent, we should have title by "murder," title by "massacre," title by "extermination," and title arising from other horrid circumstances, to which my noble Friend (Lord Howick) referred, but which can scarcely enter into our conception. To examine into all these titles, and to investigate them in all their minute particulars, as you would a title to an estate before the Court of Chancery in London, or before a Judge at York, is, I must say, an absurdity, and shows a great want of judgment. I am not speaking theoretically only on the subject. I wish the House only to advert to the last Papers, printed on the 12th of June, and they will find ample evidence of what have been the consequences of this conduct. There is a letter from Mr. Commissioner Spain—a confidential letter—to the Governor, in which he states the result of his conduct in this respect. It is dated Wellington, the 2nd of July last, and says:— Further experience gained during the last six months, while I have been, if not actually residing amongst, yet in constant communication, with the natives respecting disputed claims to land, has led to the confirmation to the fullest extent of the opinion I have before expressed as to the absolute necessity of the introduction into this Colony of a naval and military force sufficiently strong to convince the natives of our power to enforce obedience to the law, and of the utter hopelessness of any attempt on their part at resistance to its execution. I have before so often had occasion to describe the cause which, in my opinion, first led the natives to doubt the justice of our intentions towards, and subsequently to suppose us too weak and too cowardly to attempt any coercive measures against them, that it is now needless to do more than advert to the effects produced; and the present actual state of the natives as regards their opinions of and intentions towards the European settlers. At the same time, I wish your Excellency clearly to understand that I intend my observations to apply to the districts in the South which I have visited, and which may be totally different from the districts in the Northern part of the Colony where the same causes have not existed to produce similar results. In the execution of my official duties as Commissioner in the Settlements of the New Zealand Company, in investigating the claims to land of that body, it has happened that, with scarcely an exception, I have had occasion to decide in favour generally of the natives. This circumstance would fairly lead to the inference that this race at least would now place confidence in my decisions, and show a disposition to abide by and obey them; but it is with regret that I am compelled to admit that the fact is precisely the reverse of this. In cases where they have only sought for compensation, and never denied a partial sale, the moment the amount to be paid them was decided upon, they began to object to accept it, and to propose terms that could not be entertained. In fact, it appears to me that they have determined totally to disregard British law and authority, and that they have come to the conclusion that we are not strong enough to enforce the one or maintain the other. There is much more to the same purpose in the letter, in which the writer talks of the necessity of sending immediately a great number of soldiers to the Settlement—the absolute necessity, as he says, corroborated by the opinion of a person whom I suppose to be a missionary or a clergyman, of having a large force to support the authority of the Government, or it would be impossible to say what would happen. This is the consequence of want of firmness in not resisting unjust demands. Such conduct appears humane, and generous, and kind; but it is a weak yielding to intimidation and foolish concessions which lead to absurd demands. Such is always the consequence, and especially when you are dealing with savage tribes. When we first went to New Zealand nothing was more respected than our authority. Commissioner Spain's letter says— In Wellington, where property was taken that the natives had possessed and enjoyed, they were satisfied with the small amount of compensation that was given them; but on being told by interested parties that they were entitled to more, and that other tribes had got 150 when they had got but 50, and not being able to understand the difference which entitled the one to more than the other, all have become discontented, and that not only with the arrangement as to the land, but with your rule altogether. Governor Fitzroy says he is afraid of an insurrection. He says we have the right of pre-emption; but the natives cannot understand our arrangements. They are discontented, and I am told there will be an insurrection, so I must give up this part of the Treaty of Waitangi. Again, the custom-house gave a certain amount of revenue; the natives were so discontented at it that the Governor was told there would be an insurrection, so he abandoned the customs. Is that the way in which you can expect to govern any people? Is that the way in which authority can be maintained in any country? No wonder that the chief should say that what he objected to most, was the flag you have hoisted there, and that if you would take it down there would be peace. Why, this chief had intelligence enough to know that by this act you would at once renounce the sovereignty of the Queen over the islands of New Zealand. You have, by the indulgence you have given him, with respect to the land-claims and the customs, and everything else, made him think that there was only one thing that remained, but to leave him in possession of his own country, and renounce the Government. There is, then, a necessity—and the right hon. Gentleman has admitted it this night—that there should be laid down some plan for the future. I wish that the outline which the right hon. Gentleman has given us had precluded the intervention of Parliament. I agree that Parliament should not interfere except in a grave case; but if there be a grave case, it is our bounden duty—it is not merely our choice, or an usurpation, but it is our bounden duty—to see that a Colony, in which 14,000 British settlers are already residing, and in which there are 100,000 natives, should not be injured by any mal-administration. The right hon. Gentleman tells us something with regard to the schemes for the future. With regard to the land, in the first place, it is a singular scheme enough—there is to be a tax on the wild lands, then there is to be registration of all native lands, and nobody knows how it is to be conducted; and then, in addition to a registration, which may not be conducted just so well as that of the Courts of York, there is to be a property tax. If that tax on this wild land be not paid, then is to follow, what the right hon. Gentleman has not mentioned, but which Lord Stanley has directly written, the confiscation of the land. Then those who have surrendered the just rights of the Crown, rights which the Crown possesses in every Colony, those who have abandoned the right of the Crown for fear of the New Zealanders, through the medium of Captain Fitzroy, propose a new Governor, and seek by the device of a tax to take back from the natives what the natives never fairly possessed. Is this stratagem, this roundabout proceeding, the way to produce satisfaction, either amongst the colonists or the aborigines? Here is what Mr. Spain says:— I have travelled over a country where I have found millions of acres of first-rate available land, upon which the human foot had scarcely ever trod, showing the capability of this country for maintaining a very large population. I have no doubt that the Crown has the right to dispose of that land, and to divide it so as to secure it to the people of this country where they may become settlers, and be the forefathers of a great and powerful Colony, perhaps of a great and powerful nation. If you say that the land is in the first instance to be given up because it belongs to the natives, and then if you take it back again because a tax is not paid on three millions of acres, which never will be paid, the natives will never see the justice of such an arrangement. You have now some idle dream about insurrection; but if you pursue this course a real insurrection is likely to follow such madness and injustice. Sir, the right hon. Gentleman proposes that there shall be municipal law in the Colony. It appeared to me, when the Colony of New Zealand was first founded, and I so stated in my Instructions, that one of the primary measures should be the establishment of municipal government. An ordinance to that effect was, I believe, disallowed by the present Government. I considered that a great misfortune. I stated that a municipal constitution might be a proper prelude to a representative constitution. I regret that this has not been established. But if you propose to make your municipal institution the preliminary to introducing in a year or eighteen months hence a representative constitution, then I say you should fix your capital where the great body of the settlers are fixed; and then have your representative body headed by the Governor and those official persons in whom he can confide, sitting and voting in concert together. I believe, seeing what has been done by Captain Hobson, by Mr. Shortland, and latterly by Captain Fitzroy—blaming Captain Fitzroy, who was appointed by the noble Lord, not more than the two other Governors who were appointed by the preceding Government; but seeing the errors into which they have fallen—the dangers into which they have thrown the Colony, I am of opinion that the voice of the settlers themselves—speaking through their own representatives—can alone extricate you from the difficulties and embarrassments in which the Colony is now plunged. You tell us that Captain Grey is to be the Governor of New Zealand; and herein I differ from those who say that a man who has greater authority, from having had longer experience in command, should be appointed to the office; for I am of opinion that it requires all the vigour of life to enable a man to undergo all the fatigues which any Governor of New Zealand must at present endure. I think, moreover, if you appointed a man of the rank and fame of Sir Henry Pottinger, for example, you must give him absolute authority; you must give him, for a time, despotic power. You could do no less. And I, for one, would rather have a man of inferior rank and name, not having so many years of experience, but assisted by the people of New Zealand themselves, than a person of higher authority who is to wield absolute and despotic authority. Captain Grey I only knew by his public conduct. His reports upon the subject of the aborigines of New South Wales and other places, where he has been, were such as to induce me to ask him to accept the Government of South Australia. I do not believe I ever saw him before he went out to assume his post, and I certainly knew nothing of him previously. But to Captain Grey, in the government of South Australia, was given as difficult a problem in Colonial government as had ever been offered to any man to solve; and judging by the experience we have had of the four or five years he has administered the affairs of that Colony, it appears that he has solved that problem with a degree of energy and success that could hardly have been expected. With a man like that, if you give him good institutions to work with, you may succeed in extricating the Colony from its embarrassments, and in gaining the confidence and good will of the settlers from this country, and of the aboriginal natives. No man, as he has shown by his memoirs, knows better how the aborigines should be trained and formed to civilized usages. But if you send a man of this kind, it is necessary you should send him with none of your petty squabbles to increase his difficulties—not with instructions to bait Colonel Wakefield on this side, or somebody else on the other, which may unfortunately be expected from the present Government, judging from former experience. For these reasons I shall be ready to go with my hon. and learned Friend into Committee upon this subject. But I am not prepared to say that the Resolutions come to by the Committee of last year—appropriate as they might have been at that time—would be fitting Resolutions for a Committee of the whole House to adopt. In respect to this, differing somewhat from my noble Friend who spoke with so much ability and effect in this debate last night I should say in regard to such Resolutions, censure the past if you please, but look hopefully and deeply also into the future, and frame your Resolutions principally to that. I should look upon such Resolutions as the basis of a free state in New Zealand. I should look to such Resolutions as being calculated to give confidence both to those who are now in New Zealand, and to any of our own people who may be disposed to undertake to settle in that fine Colony. Sir, it is not unworthy of the House of Commons to undertake such a task. It is neither beneath nor above it to undertake this task of Colonial Government. It is, as I believe, and as I have before said, your proper function. If you will not do it, it may well be doubted whether any case of British subjects in our Colonies complaining of grievances, supported by our merchants at home, will meet with redress in this House—whether any case that can be made out, will induce you to pass what the Government have been pleased to declare to be a censure upon their Colleagues. It will be reckoned that rather than pass a censure upon one of the Ministry, you would incur any loss, even that of the Colony. But if you enter into the investigation, I think, at the end of some days of deliberation, you will have to console yourselves with the reflection that, if you have undertaken a task unpalatable to the Government of the day, you have assisted in laying the foundation of a noble Colony—a Colony to form a branch of this mighty Empire, and in future times, to extend the English language, English institutions, English love of liberty, and the English name over distant regions of the globe.

Sir Robert Peel

Sir, it would be unfortunate if any differences connected with party considerations, or any conflict that there may have been between the Colonial Department and the New Zealand Company, should divert our attention from the consideration of what is due to the interests of that Colony which is the immediate subject of this discussion. Sir, I willingly admit that the interests of that Colony are recommended to us by many considerations. I look at the extent of that Colony, at its line of coast, at the quantity of land in it capable of cultivation and improvement; I look, above all, at its position and the new importance which it has acquired by the events which have been passing in the Pacific, and by the opening of the trade with China. I agree with the noble Lord (Lord John Russell) that there appears every probability, as far as we can form a judgment, that that Colony, if its interests are duly regarded and its welfare fostered, is destined to occupy a most important station in the world. I agree that its relation to this country is most important. Surveying the unoccupied portion of the globe, I know of no part of that globe more calculated to afford a profitable field for employment to the superabundant population of this country. Every consideration, therefore, I willingly admit, recommends to our careful attention the interests of this infant society. Sir, the question is whether you will leave the charge of these in the hands of the Executive Government, or whether you will to-night assume to the House of Commons the functions of determining on the future government of the Colony? The hon. Gentleman the Member for Liskeard (Mr. Charles Buller) moves that we should go into Committee on this question; and that Gentleman, the most conversant with the affairs of the Colony, proposes fifteen or sixteen Resolutions for their deliberation. But we have been told by those who are going to support him, that these Resolutions are for the most part inapplicable; and that although they will vote for going into Committee, it will be impossible in the Committee for them to acquiesce in his Resolutions. Now, what is the course the Government proposes to pursue under circumstances which I admit to be critical? Disapproving of the conduct of a Governor—for whose personal character I avow I entertain the highest respect—for the difficulties of whose position I own I must make great allowance—we have yet signified, in the most formal and authoritative manner, that his conduct in the administration of affairs we do not approve of; and with reluctance, but in the performance of a necessary duty, we have removed him from a post which he undertook from the highest and most patriotic motives. We have shown, therefore, in the first instance, that we have no desire to consult the feelings and interests of a friend, to the prejudice of the Colony. We have next made, or contemplate making, the appointment of his successor. The policy of that appointment has been questioned by some; but I apprehend the highest authority with regard to his qualifications must be the noble Lord (Lord John Russell) who selected him for the situation he now fills. And what is the character the noble Lord gives of him? He says that one of the greatest difficulties in Colonial Government that had to be solved was found in the position of South Australia; that he selected Captain Grey to solve that difficulty, and that he entirely succeeded; that difficulties which appeared to be insuperable, were overcome by his discretion, energy, and judgment. We propose now to submit the solution of these yet greater difficulties to Captain Grey. It has been objected that he is too young a man. Well, but at all events he is five years older than he was when the noble Lord selected him, and he undertook the government of South Australia. Moreover, he has had the benefit of the intervening experience in his attempts to solve these great difficulties to which the noble Lord referred. Then, some say, that he is not of high rank enough. As if the native chiefs of New Zealand did not attach more importance to past success, and the character and energy of a man, than to his conventional rank and station. He holds the rank only of Captain in Her Majesty's Army; but he has been eminently successful in rescuing a Colony from difficulty, and therefore we select him for the command. The noble Member for Sunderland may say that we ought to have taken a man of higher rank in the army; but surely the true qualifications for this post are past success, and confidence in the character and judgment of the individual in question. Then it is said that we have not had the benefit of personal communication with him. But I must say, that experience does not show that personal communication is of much use in enabling us to overcome Colonial difficulties. The noble Lord, I presume, had the opportunity of personal communication with Captain Hobson. [Lord J. Russell: No; Lord Normanby had.] Oh! the noble Lord surely will not make a distinction between Lord Normanby and himself [Lord J. Russell: I had no personal communication with him.] But the Secretary of State in that Government of which the noble Lord was the organ in the House of Commons had. He had also the opportunity of personal communication with Mr. Spain upon the duties of a Land Commissioner; and we had the opportunity of similar communication with Captain Fitzroy. All these opportunities have failed of insuring success. I do not mean to say that personal communication may not be in many cases an advantage; but if you have a Governor administering the affairs of a Colony comparatively near to this, and a man so eminently qualified as Captain Grey, a man who has studied the affairs of the Colony, and has recently written upon the subject with the utmost judgment and good sense, I cannot think that the circumstance of his absence from this country constitutes any disqualification for the command. The noble Lord says, that we shall probably give Captain Grey instructions to enter into disputes and squabbles with Colonel Wakefield on the one side, and somebody else on the other. Really it is very unworthy of the noble Lord to make any such observation. We shall give him the assurance of our entire confidence, and confer upon him all the authority which is consistent with the law and constitution of this country. We shall give him an unfettered discretion, laying down, as far as we can, the general principles by which we think he ought to be guided; but knowing the difficulties existing, of giving instructions from the Government at a distance of so many thousand miles, under the circumstances in which that Colony is placed, the discretion of Captain Grey will be unfettered by any particular instructions. Now, with respect to the future Government of this Colony, I must say, that looking at the distance at which it is removed from the seat of Government at home, and considering the great difficulty of issuing orders for its government in this country, I am for one strongly inclined to think that a representative government will be suited for the condition of the people of that Colony. It has not the objections that might be applied to a Penal Colony; for you have at any rate released New Zealand from the evils attendant on a penal settlement. Speaking, therefore, on general principles, I think the Government of that Colony, in connexion with those immediately interested in its local prosperity, assigning to them the administration of its affairs, is a form of government well adapted for New Zealand. In short, I cannot see what assignable interest you can have, except in the commercial and social prosperity of that Colony. The only possible ground of connexion that can exist will depend upon its being profitable. It is impossible that, at the distance at which we are, this country can seek any advantage in its connexion with New Zealand, except reciprocal interests; and, above all, the local prosperity of the Colony. At the same time it is impossible to apply without great consideration the principles of representative government to islands where the circumstances are so peculiar. The noble Lord thinks Auckland improperly selected for the seat of Executive Government; but I apprehend there were reasons for its selection, of great weight. I apprehend that, with reference to naval and military considerations, the claims of Auckland were entitled to great consideration. Whether it would be wise to transfer the seat of Government to some other place, is one of those circumstances that must be influenced by local rather than by general considerations; but we ought not to select any other without reference to the general advantage. But, considering the extent of the islands, and the distance of the settlements, it is no easy matter to introduce the principle of representative government, according to the construction we place upon it. It appears to me that by far the best plan would be the formation in the first instance of municipal governments, with extensive powers of local taxation, and meeting all local demands. In the opinion of Mr. Burke, the form of representative government in our North American Colonies grew out of these municipal governments. In, I think, his letter to the Sheriffs of Bristol, he says— These representative governments in North America have grown up, I know not how; but there they are. The people who left this country, left it with those feelings of pride, and of love, and attachment to liberty which belong to self-government. They began with municipal institutions. Distance and absence of control gradually nurtured them, so that from small beginnings they grew up into representative assemblies; and there I find them. I will not inspect them too narrowly; I will not inquire too close into their establishment. I believe they are the natural growth of such institutions; and those who have colonies, especially British Colonies, must expect such results. Now, I am strongly inclined to think that the germ of a representative government in a Colony ought to be in these municipalities, widening their sphere by degrees according as the land becomes settled and peopled; and I doubt whether that would not be a safer mode than that of establishing among so thin a population a representative government that would require deputies from the people of Auckland and of Wellington to meet together, separated as they are by such a great distance. That will be one of the subjects which will be referred to the consideration of the able man whom we have appointed to govern that Colony. I do not think it would be wise to adopt the suggestion of the New Zealand Company to make a proprietary government. I believe the best form of government will be that the Crown here should superintend the external regulations of that country, and that the local Executive Government should manage the internal affairs of the Colony. It would be difficult for the Crown to superintend the relations of the Colony, in conjunction with another party: to have two authorities, the Crown and the Company, each exercising control over the local Government, would be a system never tried, and so anomalous, that I do not think success would attend it. I think but a very short interval would elapse before the local representative Government would deny the authority of the Government at home to control the New Zealand Company, and we should find that it would be no easy matter for the Crown to retain its authority. I think, therefore, that a system of proprietary government, which implies control over the local Government, to be divided with the Crown, would be one from which no good could arise. Sir, with respect to the New Zealand Company, I will say at once, that I think it important to maintain that Company in the full exercise of the power committed to it—I mean the power of settlement. I think in that way it may be made a useful instrument of Government, not exercising any interference with the affairs of the State, and not exercising any control over these matters, but as a great commercial company acting on enlightened principles, and aiding the Executive Government in devising the best and most extended means of emigration, and of adding to the employment required by our surplus population. I do not despair that these relations will yet be established, and that without exercising any powers of the Administration at home, they will subsist as a Company for the future, acting, I trust, in concert and harmony with the Government, and as an useful instrument for promoting the colonization of New Zealand. Now, with respect to the revenue—for we were particularly challenged to state our opinion upon the subject—with respect to the revenue, it is very difficult, at such a great distance, to do more than to lay down general principles. But I must say, with all my respect for Captain Fitzroy, the abandonment of all revenue constitutes a most serious evil. The customs' regulations should be reestablished, if there is no other mode of raising a revenue less onerous to the people of that country. The fact of their having been abandoned does not constitute, in my mind, any objection to their re-establishment. But at this distance from the Colony, and without a knowledge of the circumstances that have occurred, to say that they shall be revived is a matter that must be left to the consideration of him who has been appointed to conduct the Government of the Colony. I say this without any mixture of party feeling; and I may again recur to what I stated at the commencement of my observations, that I should consider it a most unfortunate circumstance if, in the midst of our personal and party conflicts, we permitted the regard that was due to the interests of the Colony to escape our attention. If I wanted any other motive, the sympathy I feel for the settlers, who went out in expectation of finding a prosperous home, would induce me to take this course. Having said thus much, I now come to the Motion of the hon. Gentleman, and which, according to his speech, is intended to fix a censure on the Administration of my noble Friend. Sir, I shall vote against the Motion of the hon. Gentleman, because the Resolutions which the most competent judge of the affairs of New Zealand, who has read more, and written more, with respect to New Zealand than, I believe, any other man in existence — because those seventeen Resolutions which the hon. Member has proposed have nothing better to encourage me to agree to them, than that they are admitted to be inapplicable, by one of the best, judges, to the state of affairs in that Colony. That would be enough to make me determine to oppose them. I admit there is one Resolution which has a direct and practical bearing on the case of New Zealand—that which declares that respect should be paid to the Treaty of Waitangi. Everybody says he is ready to respect it; but there is a great difference of opinion as to the mode in which that Treaty should be respected. But, the hon. Gentleman intends his Motion to be a condemnation of my noble Friend. Well, if ever there was a Motion calculated to do injustice to a public servant, that is the Motion. You are judging now of the conduct of my noble Friend by your wishes and feelings with regard to this Colony of New Zealand. You find that it would be advantageous to this country, which I admit, if you were not embarrassed by this Treaty of Waitangi. I say nothing more of it than that it is an absolute engagement, which, according to a proper construction of it, ought to be respected. Whatever are the honourable engagements which this country has contracted, they ought, in my opinion, to be fulfilled. New Zealand is a country, according to the noble Lord (Lord John Russell), and I trust he is justified, destined to brilliant fortunes; but a relation with it would begin under unfortunate auspices, whatever might be its immediate advantages, if it were tainted with a breach of honour. Now, in order that you may judge of the justice of those imputations which have been cast upon my noble Friend, I must recall to your recollection the circumstances under which our connexion with New Zealand commenced. The feelings then entertained were very different from those of the present day; there was a different impression on the public mind with respect to Colonial relations eleven years ago, when your relations with New Zealand began. In 1834, there was a strong feeling in the Parliament and the public of this country, that England was chargeable with injustice in its treatment of the aborigines. That public man whose death has been sincerely lamented by all who admired the devotion of great talents to the cause of humanity—I mean, Sir Fowell Buxton—moved in 1834, in this House an Address to the Crown, to this effect:— That, deeply impressed with the duty of acting on the principles of justice and humanity with the native inhabitants of British Colonial settlements, we call upon the Crown to adopt different principles from those which had been heretofore acted upon in some of our Colonial establishments. In 1836, a Select Committee was appointed at the instance of the same Sir Fowell Buxton; evidence was taken in that year, and a Report was made in 1837—a most full and able document—detailing the result of our relations with the natives in some of our Colonial settlements, which made a deep impression on the country. There was an account of our treatment of them in Newfoundland, of the mode in which the natives of that country, under our connexion had wasted away from a numerous body, who, according to the reports of former travellers who had visited the Colony for the purpose of hunting, had erected lines of tents of at least thirty miles in length. Now, these, I say, had dwindled away to two or three individuals, who were left in the centre of the island. We had an account of the establishment and progress of our Colony among the Caffres; we had an account of the manner in which the natives of Van Diemen's Land had been transferred to some other island; from the Committee appointed to consider the measures necessary to secure to the native inhabitants the true observance of justice and the protection of their rights. This is one of the observations of the Report:— It may be presumed that the native inhabitants of any land have an incontrovertible right to their own soil—a sacred right, however, which appears not to have been understood by this country. That Report was made in 1837, and in 1839 arose the question whether we should form new relations with New Zealand. The Marquess of Normanby was acting under the influence of the recommendations contained in that Report. It may be said, that he made improvident engagements and wrote unwise despatches. It is as easy for you to lay down these doctrines with respect to Lord Normanby as you are now disposed to condemn Lord Stanley; but be it remembered what was the public feeling in regard to our relations with the aborigines which influenced Lord Normanby in 1839. It was under the influence of those feelings, and in the spirit of which the despatches were written, that your relation with New Zealand was formed, and which now constitutes the difficulty with which Lord Stanley has to contend. The first despatch which Lord Normanby wrote referred expressly—and I cite it as a proof that what I am stating is correct—to the Report of your Select Committee, and your adoption of the principles of that Report, which had made a deep impression on the public mind, with regard to the relations you should establish with the aboriginal natives of any country in which you might form a settlement. It is not then the Executive Government, but you, who are responsible; for you agreed to the Address to the Crown, praying the Crown to protect the rights of the aborigines; you are responsible for the appointment of these Committees; and you are responsible for the doctrines laid down in their Reports, for you adopted them. Well, the question arose, as to establishing fresh relations with New Zealand. Lord Normanby expressly referred to the Report of the Committee. Lord Normanby said— I have concurred with that Committee in thinking that the increase of national wealth and power, promised by the acquisition of New Zealand, would be a most inadequate compensation for the injury that must be inflicted on this kingdom itself by embarking in a measure essentially unjust, and but too certainly fraught with calamity to a numerous and inoffensive people, whose title to the soil and sovereignty of New Zealand is indisputable, and has been solemnly recognised by the British Government. The Report of the Committee had said, that the right of the natives to their country is incontrovertible, and Lord Normanby, in establishing his relations with New Zealand, refers to the Report of the Committee, and states that the right of the people of New Zealand to the soil and sovereignty of the islands is indisputable. Then you acknowledged New Zealand as a sovereign and independent State. Now, I think, that you were wrong in doing so. I think, that you acted under impressions which were no doubt very natural; but, I think, that those impressions induced you and the Executive Government of that period to adopt a course which has weakened your future authority in the Colony, and has proved injurious to the natives. I think, that it would have been much better if we had claimed the right to New Zealand upon the ground of discovery, than to hold it by mere cession. You may say, that you have established your right to the Northern island; but I think, that the cession by chiefs, representing 8,000 inhabitants, is much less binding than our title to it on the ground of discovery. I do not hesitate to say that the Treaty of Waitangi has been a most unwise one, even for the natives. I think it would have been a much better course for us to have asserted the right of sovereignty on the ground of discovery, than to have accepted that sovereignty from the chiefs, and to have negotiated with them for the sale of the lands. These, however, are the engagements which you formed, and by which we must be bound. These are inconvenient, I admit, but you have already sanctioned them. You have held that language through your Secretaries of State, and do you then think it reconcilable with justice that you should now make a victim of my noble Friend the present Secretary of State for the Colonies, who has but followed up the policy pursued by his predecessors in office? Do not refer to what Lord Stanley wrote in 1842, but look at the instructions that were given by you in 1839 to Captain Hobson to form that Treaty. These are the doctrines which you then held, which I think will fully illustrate the animus with which you then acted:— The Queen, in common with Her Majesty's predecessors, disclaims for herself every pretence to seize on the island, or to attempt to govern it on the part of Great Britain, unless the free and express approbation of the natives according to established usage be obtained. Her Majesty's Government authorize you to treat with the aborigines for the whole or any part of the island, which they will be willing to place under Her dominion. Here, then, were the instructions to Captoin Hobson, to accept a partial sovereignty from the chiefs. Now, observe the instructions under which Captain Hobson was acting when he had made the Treaty of Waitangi. Lord Normanby writes:— Although the natives may regard your proposal with fear and distrust, these are impediments which may be gradually overcome by your sincerity and intercourse with them. And who were the auxiliaries that were applied to to assist you in overcoming those difficulties? The missionaries, against whom you may now find it convenient to declaim and to point your attacks. What said Lord Normanby?— You will, I trust, find your most powerful auxiliaries among the missionaries, who are highly deserving of your confidence. I think, after having obtained the assistance of the missionaries to effect your object then, it is now rather hard to turn round upon them, and to denounce them as land-jobbers, and unworthy of that confidence which you were willing to award them at the former period. Lord Normanby went on to say— Having by these methods obviated the dangers of the acquisition of large tracts of country by mere land-jobbers, it will be your duty to obtain, by fair and equal contracts with the natives, the cession to the Crown of such waste lands as may be progressively required for the occupation of settlers resorting to New Zealand. There is, then, no claim here on the part of the Crown to possession of the territory in consequence of sovereignty. But Captain Hobson is not merely directed to treat with the natives, according as the wants of the settlers might arise, for lands not actually enjoyed or occupied by them, but for the waste lands of the islands, with the express admission that those lands were of no value to the natives; for Lord Normanby proceeds:— To the natives, or their chiefs, much of the land of the country is of no actual use, and in their hands it possesses scarcely any exchangeable value. Is it not clear, then, that Lord Normanby's instructions to Captain Hobson were to take the lands, not by any prerogative of the Crown, but by cession from the natives? I cannot avoid contrasting the language you then held in respect to these engagements, with what you now hold. The New Zealand Company state, with respect to these contracts— We always have very serious doubts whether the Treaty of Waitangi, made with naked savages by a Consul invested with no plenipotentiary powers, without ratification by the Crown, could be treated by lawyers as anything but a praiseworthy device for amusing and pacifying savages. I believe that there are a good many lawyers in the New Zealand Company, and this may be the language of lawyers; and if you hold this doctrine, you will vote for the Resolutions of the hon. and learned Member for Liskeard; for the hon. and learned Member's Resolutions are founded upon that assumption. But what was the language of statesmen? Was it that those engagements were a praiseworthy device for amusing and pacifying savages? The noble Lord opposite wrote to Captain Hobson as follows:— Among the many barbarous tribes with which our extended Colonial Empire brings us into contact in different parts of the globe, there are none whose claims on the protection of the British Crown rest on grounds stronger than those of the New Zealanders. They are not mere wanderers over an extended surface in search of a precarious subsistence, nor tribes of hunters or of herdsmen, but a people among whom the arts of government have made some progress; who have established by their own customs a division and appropriation of the soil; who are not without some measure of agricultural skill, and a certain subordination of ranks, with usages having the character and authority of law. In addition to this, they have been formally recognised by Great Britain as an independent state, and even in assuming the dominion of the country this principle was acknowledged; for it is on the deliberate act and cession of the chiefs, on behalf of the people at large that our title rests. That was the language held by statesmen. The Treaty was entered into with as much formality as their usages permitted; and are you now prepared, because you find the engagements onerous and inconvenient — inconvenient not only to yourselves, but injurious to the natives even—are you prepared to disclaim and repudiate the act of statesmen, and to concur with the lawyers that the Treaty is a mere praiseworthy device for amusing and pacifying savages? You must hear these things before you give your votes; you set the example which has been followed by the succeeding Government, and do not attempt to transfer to Lord Stanley the responsibility of your own acts. What has my noble Friend done but carried out your avowed intentions? and, before you condemn him, you must hear the qualifications and reserves under which the natives of New Zealand entered into this engagement. Observe what the Treaty was that was framed under those instructions to Captain Hobson: you cannot escape from that consideration. Captain Hobson reports to the authorities at home, that in pursuance of his instructions, he summoned the native chiefs, whom he appointed to meet him at Mr. Busby's house, at ten o'clock. He goes on to say:— Preparatory to the meeting, I had appointed a levee to be held at Mr. Busby's house, at eleven o'clock, to which I invited all the principal European inhabitants, the members of the Church of England and Catholic Missions, and all the officers of this ship, and was highly gratified to find that nearly every one either here or in the neighbourhood, favoured me with their attendance……I then read the Treaty, a copy of which I have the honour to enclose; and on doing so, I dwelt on each Article, and offered a few remarks explanatory of such passages as they might be supposed not to understand. Mr. Henry Williams, of the Church Missionary Society, did me the favour to interpret, and repeated in the native tongue, sentence by sentence, all I said. When I had finished reading the Treaty, I invited the chiefs to ask explanations on any points they did not comprehend, and to make any observations or remarks on it they pleased. Twenty or thirty chiefs addressed the meeting, five or six of whom opposed me with great violence, and at one period with such effect and so cleverly, that I began to apprehend an unfavourable impression would be produced. Revewah, while addressing me, turned to the chiefs and said, 'Send the man away; do not sign the paper; if you do, you will be reduced to the condition of slaves, and be obliged to break stones for the roads. Your land will be taken from you, and your dignity as chiefs will be destroyed.' That was the language of the opposing chief. At the first pause, Neni came forward and spoke with a degree of natural eloquence that surprised all the Europeans, and evidently turned aside the temporary feeling that had been created against us. He first addressed his own companions. 'Reflect,' he said, 'on your condition. Reflect how much you have been exalted by European intercourse. How impossible it was for you to govern without frequent wars and bloodshed;' and he concluded by saying they should receive us, and place confidence in our principles. This, remember, is a dry official Report. 'You must,' he continued, 'be our father. You must not allow us to become slaves. You must preserve our customs, and never permit our lands to be taken from us.' Can you resist such an appeal to your equity and honour? Do not hastily renounce that character for honour and good faith to which this native chief appealed in his eloquent address. He said to the surrounding audience, "Rely on British honour;" and to the British Representative, "you must be our father—take care our lands are not seized on against our will." One or two other chiefs who were favourable, followed him in the same train, and one reproached a noisy fellow named Kitigi, of the adverse party, with having spoken rudely to me. Kitigi, stung by the remark, sprang forward and shook me violently by the hand, and I received the salute apparently with equal ardour. This occasioned amongst the natives a general expression of applause, and a loud cheer from the Europeans, in which the natives joined; and thus the business of the meeting closed; further consideration of the question being adjourned to Friday at eleven o'clock, leaving, as I said, one clear day to reflect on my proposal. The consequence was, that the Treaty was signed. These were the circumstances under which this inconvenient Treaty was made; and I ask will you commence your relations with the Colony by an abandonment of the obligations you have entered into? I will say, that if ever there was a case where the stronger party was obliged by its position to respect the demands of the weaker, if ever a powerful country was bound by its engagements with a weaker, it was the engagement contracted under such circumstances with these native chiefs. Again, I say, you will enter upon a most inexpedient course of proceeding with your colonists, unless you are prepared to fulfil with honour whatever just engagements you have entered into. The noble Lord said that he had been charged with having formed a contract with the New Zealand Company inconsistent with the Treaty of Waitangi. He was particularly severe on those on this side of the House who had preferred this charge against him; but that was the very charge that had been preferred against him within the last fortnight by the New Zealand Company. It is wrong, perhaps, to attribute to any particular writer the authorship of a document signed by that Company; but I cannot conceive any one could have written this despatch except the Gentleman who made the speech which prefaced the present Resolutions. It displays an intimate knowledge of the affairs of the New Zealand Company; and though signed by the noble Lord the Member for Staffordshire (Lord Ingestre), I think it must have been written by the hon. and learned Gentleman opposite (Mr. C. Buller). It states that it is impossible to reconcile the missionary system and that of the Company; that the missionaries and the Company proceeded on systems directly opposed to each other; and that the Treaty of Waitangi was based on the missionary principle, while Lord John Russell acted on the colonization principle. The charge, therefore, of acting inconsistently with the Treaty of Waitangi is not preferred by us; but, if I am right as to the authorship of this paper, the charge is made by the hon. and learned Gentleman who sits near the noble Lord, and with whom the noble Lord says he is prepared to vote. There is nothing, I admit, inconsistent in the engagements of the contract with the Company and the Treaty of Waitangi, according to the noble Lord's first construction of his own contract. The noble Lord's first construction of the contract was clearly this, that he had understood (that is the phrase) that the New Zealand Company had made large purchases of land of the natives, and that they had an equitable title to land far exceeding in quantity that which the noble Lord proposed to convey to them. If the noble Lord was right in that, and if the New Zealand Company was right, there was nothing in the slightest degree inconsistent, in the Treaty of Waitangi, with the contract. The New Zealand Company said they bought the land; the noble Lord said, "I don't respect the purchase; but this I will undertake, I will assign out of the land you have so purchased, 1,000,000 of acres;" and the noble Lord remained under the impression that that was the contract with the New Zealand Company; and I must say I think the Secretary to the Treasury (Mr. Cardwell) did demonstrate that that was the impression of the noble Lord's agent, Mr. Spain, of the Governor, nay, more, of Colonel Wakefield, until the period arrived when it became necessary to scrutinize the title of the New Zealand Company; and when that moment did arrive, and Mr. Spain began the inquiry, it was found that some other mode of fulfilling the contract must be devised, for the Company could not establish their title to the land. Now, it was the second engagement substituted for the first, that was inconsistent with the Treaty of Waitangi. Did my noble Friend (Lord Stanley) insist on the literal observance of the Treaty? Was it not his wish to deal liberally with the New Zealand Company? The wish of the noble Lord was this, that as the Company had not established a claim to any land, or at least any sufficient quantity of land, to assign to them all he could assign on a conditional title, subject to other parties hereafter proving a preferable title. With my noble Friend's conscientious impressions as to the binding engagements of the Treaty of Waitangi, he could do no more: he said to the Company, "I will permit you within certain limits to choose the land you require, on the condition of a preferable claim not being established hereafter;" the onus of establishing that claim being thrown on the adverse party, and the right of possession being given to this powerful Company. I am bound to say that the noble Lord's intentions were not fulfilled as I think they ought to have been; but you ought not to make him morally responsible for the failure. He had not admitted the claim of the Company as of right, but he consented on the part of the Crown to give it whatever he could give, in substitution for the original understanding. He was prepared to do that which the noble Lord opposite (Lord J. Russell) suggested some time since; he required that the parties should at once proceed to establish their claim to the land. He was ready to take possession on the part of the Crown of all that land to which no valid title was established, and from any land of which the Crown was possessed by a just title, to compensate the Company for the disappointment to which it had been subjected. I leave the House to judge if my noble Friend can be justly charged with harshness towards the Company. You may censure him for his construction of the Treaty of Waitangi, but it was a bonâ fide and conscientious construction. He does not admit the title of the natives to all the waste lands; he admits an obligation on the part of the native chiefs to establish their claim, but, unfortunately, no steps have been taken towards doing it. The noble Lord opposite speaks of registration as if it was like that of Yorkshire or Middlesex. It is nothing of the sort. It is only to establish a valid title to the land which is one of the subjects to which the attention of Captain Grey will be at first directed. But the real question is this—Whether you think it just, after the reference made to engagements entered into, after the instructions given by Lord Norman by, and after the approval of the noble Lord opposite—whether you will now, by affirming these Resolutions, affix a censure on my noble Friend, who has done nothing more, in my opinion, than maintain the honour of the country, by respecting its engagements, and carrying into effect those opinions which, whatever may be the doctrines you now hold, were the opinions of the House of Commons ten years from this period. If the House of Commons, in contradiction to that course, and by a manifest perversion of those doctrines maintained by the Committee on the state of the aborigines, should now affirm that the Treaty of Waitangi enables the Crown to dispossess the chiefs of all their land without full inquiry, you will lower the character of the House in the estimation of all who respect fidelity to public engagements. If you affix a censure on my noble Friend, you will pass a censure on one who has not yielded to the influence of powerful parties, who has not borne in mind that in this New Zealand Company there are men high in character and powerful in influence on this side of the House — who might have procured peace and repose by yielding to applications from those powerful parties—but who has thought it his public duty, with a conscientious regard to what is due to the honour and good faith of this powerful country, to maintain inviolate the engagements which it had contracted, against the interests of the powerful and the strong, by maintaining the guaranteed rights of the weak, the distant, and the unprotected.

Mr. Charles Buller

in reply: The last observation of the right hon. Gentleman called upon him to inquire as to which party in that House was really maintaining the honour and faith of the British Government towards the weak and unprotected? And he would say, that if he wished to pillage the weak and repudiate the Treaty, he would rather come forward boldly and say so, than he would have recourse to the miserable shuffling of the Colonial Office. He had said by anticipation in his opening speech, that it was Pennsylvanian repudiation without its openness, and he now repeated that assertion. The right hon. Baronet had repeated all the flummery about the Treaty, and insisted on the most rigid construction of it; and he then said he would call upon the native, first, to establish his title in a court of claims, next to register his property, and if he failed in establishing his claims before such a court, and failed, too, in the formalities of registration, he would put on a wild and waste land tax, and would tax him for the land which his fathers had handed down to him for generations in that state, and thereby obtain possession of a considerable quantity of land. He would tell him fairly that he believed it would have a much better effect upon the character of Great Britain if he would say at once that he would not observe the Treaty of Waitangi, than, with all this parade, to— Keep the word of promise to the ear, And break it to the hope. He would venture to say that there never had been proposed so audacious a violation of the faith and honour of a nation as in the cession of a foreign country—when the property of individuals in such conquered country had been guaranteed to them by a Treaty of Cession—as the then turning round and putting upon these people a tax of which the avowed object was to confiscate the land. But then the right hon. Baronet said, that those who might support the Resolutions which he (Mr. Buller) had proposed, would be adopting the language which the New Zealand Company had used. The First Resolution said that the Treaty of Waitangi was a part of a series of injudicious proceedings which had commenced several years previous to Captain Hobson's assumption of the local Government. That was the strongest condemnation of the Treaty of Waitangi; and he would ask what the right hon. Baronet said about it himself? If they would go into Committee, and the right hon. Baronet would preserve his consistency with the speech which he had made, he would be bound to vote for that Resolution; for he also said that the Treaty of Waitangi was a most injudicious proceeding. He wanted to know what he had laid down which should alarm the most sensitive person about the Treaty of Waitangi? He had said that a more absurd comedy had never been acted than the whole of those proceedings, and he had the right hon. Baronet agreeing with him. He had not said that the Treaty should not be observed, nor had he contended that its maintenance would affect the interests which he advocated; for he had stated that if any fair interpretation was put upon the Treaty, it would not be found inconsistent with the doctrines which he had laid down. The Second Resolution stated— That the acknowledgment of a right of property on the part of the natives of New Zealand, in all wild land in their islands, after the Sovereignty had been assumed by Her Majesty, was not essential to the true construction of the Treaty of Waitangi, and was an error which had been productive of very injurious consequences. He did not think that he should very far differ in opinion from the right hon. Baronet when he expressed his opinion in accordance with that of the Committee, that the interpretation which had been put upon the Treaty of Waitangi had been productive of very injurious consequences. It was absurd to treat the natives as being the exclusive owners of so vast a quantity of land which they had never cultivated or used. The Clause in the Treaty which gave the pre-emptive right to the Crown was of as much importance as the Clauses which regarded the rights of the natives. That Clause was well meant; it was devised to protect the interests of the natives, it was meant to guard them against the most avaricious system of dealing with a savage race, which had always ended in their extermination. The right hon. Baronet said he was determined to act on the Treaty of Waitangi. Then let him do it honestly, and provide a certain sum of money, and tell his representatives that he did not mean to delay about this matter any longer; let him avail himself of the pre-emptive right which the Crown had to purchase the land, and prevent the natives from selling it to any one else. That was what he called an honest mode. But the dishonest mode was coming after your Treaty and clapping on a land tax, for the purpose of confiscating the land on which it could not be paid. They were about to establish a regular registration of lands, and of the titles to lands of native chiefs. And all these rights and titles of occupancy and emigration, and above all the right and title of killing and eating—these were the rights which they proposed to investigate; and these monstrosities and barbarisms, which denoted the absence of all law, they were going to establish as forms of law, in a court established for that purpose in New Zealand. He said, take any plan but that—take the bold plan of pitching the Treaty of Waitangi into the sea, rather than have recourse to a plan which would make people say that that Treaty they intended to violate secretly and by stealth, because they did not dare openly and honestly to renounce it. He rested the agreement of 1840 on two things besides the words of that agreement. One of these which he had adduced in his opening speech, no Gentleman on the other side of the House had at all alluded to. The bargain was, that on producing certain expenditure before an accountant, they were to have a grant of land. The Company proved that expenditure before an accountant. They went before the noble Lord, then Secretary for the Colonies. That noble Lord issued instructions forthwith to the then Governor of the Colony to make the stipulated grant of lands. But he rested his case upon a still stronger ground. It was impossible, satisfactorily, to discuss matters like these in this House. Acknowledging that truth, the House had already referred the subject to a competent tribunal, formed of its own Members. That Committee made a Report, and the fourth Resolution which they came to was to the effect that the New Zealand Company had a right to expect to be put in possession of the number of acres awarded by Mr. Pennington with the least possible delay. Now he asked them whether they thought themselves competent to overturn the decision of this Committee, composed as it was of men of honour, influenced by no party feelings, and who after weeks of investigation had come to their decision? These were the grounds on which the agreement of 1840 rested. But not a word had been said about the agreement of May, 1843. Then they had made an agreement with Lord Stanley, that they were forthwith to have from Captain Fitzroy a conditional grant, giving them a primâ facie title to lands to be selected by their agents. The virtue of this agreement was in its immediate application. But it was never applied, and all the satisfaction they could get was a cool statement from the Government that, with reference to the matter, the conduct of Captain Fitzroy had not met with their approbation. That was all the explanation which they could obtain, after making a bargain with Government, and trusting for its execution to the honour, good faith, and good sense of the Government Agent. It was said that the land had not been selected by the Company's agents. Why, they had selected 60,000 acres in New Plymouth; and then the Governor stepped coolly in and told them they should only have 3,500 acres, and that on condition of their paying for them over again. Government had stated their views, however, upon the still more important subject of their future policy towards New Zealand. First, they were told that the colonists were to be protected by a regiment to be sent out for the purpose. Then they heard that the land was to be recovered by the worst possible means. But what guarantee had they that the same misconduct which had plunged the Colony into its present condition, would not be renewed? One such guarantee would undoubtedly be representative government; and had the right hon. Gentleman, the First Lord of the Treasury, given a distinct pledge that the people of New Zealand would be allowed to have a voice in the imposition of the taxes which they paid, and in the making of the laws which they obeyed—that pledge would have greatly diminished his desire to press his Resolutions. But Government gave no guarantee upon the subject. He could not deny the conciliatory tone of the right hon. Gentleman the Prime Minister; and he believed that neither he, nor any of his Colleagues, had tried to mislead the House as to the late government of New Zealand. They had fairly thrown it overboard. He was obliged for that. He thought that the course thus adopted was the best and the most candid one which they could take; but he did not think that they had given any guarantee for the future government of New Zealand; and he must therefore call on them, notwithstanding the intimation that this would be made a Government question, and the hint that after all the trying votes which hon. Gentlemen had given to extricate the Ministry from awkward situations, they must not stick at the present one; notwithstanding all this, he relied on the fairness and good feeling of the House to do justice in this case, and respect the weakness of distant and unprotected Colonies.

The House divided on Mr. Buller's Motion.—Ayes, 173: Noes 223; Majority 50.

List of the AYES.
Aglionby, H. A. Gardner, J. D.
Aldam, W. Gibson, T. M.
Anson, hon. Col. Gill, T.
Bannerman, A. Gore, hon. R.
Barclay, D. Granger, T. C.
Barkly, H. Gregory, W. H.
Baring, rt. hon. F. T. Grey, rt. hon. Sir G.
Barron, Sir H. W. Guest, Sir J.
Bellew, R. M. Hanmer, Sir J.
Berkeley, hon. C. Hastie, A.
Berkeley, hon. Capt. Hawes, B.
Berkeley, hon. H. F. Hayter, W. G.
Bernal, R. Heathcote, G. J.
Bowes, J. Heneage, E.
Bowring, Dr. Herron, Sir R.
Bright, J. Hill, Lord M.
Brotherton, J. Hindley, C.
Bulkeley, Sir R. B. W. Hobhouse, rt. hon. Sir J.
Buller, E. Hollond, R.
Busfeild, W. Horseman, E.
Butler, P. S. Howard, hn. C. W. G.
Byng, G. Howard, hon. J. K.
Byng, rt. hon. G. S. Howard, hon. E. G. G.
Chapman, B. Howard, P. H.
Charteris, hon. F. Howard, hon. H.
Christie, W. D. Howard, Sir R.
Clay, Sir W. Howick, Visct.
Clive, E. B. Humphery, Ald.
Cobden, R. Hutt, W.
Colborne, hn. W. N. R. Ingestre, Visct.
Colebrooke, Sir T. E. Jervis, J.
Copeland, Ald. Labouchere, rt. hn. H.
Courtenay, Lord Langston, J. H.
Craig, W. G. Layard, Capt.
Currie, R. Listowel, Earl of
Dalmeny, Lord Macaulay, rt. hon. T. B.
Dalrymple, Capt. M'Taggart, Sir J.
Dawson, hon. T. V. Mangles, R. D.
Denison, W. J. Manners, Lord J.
Denison, J. E. Marjoribanks, S.
Dennistoun, J. Marsland, H.
D'Israeli, B. Martin, J.
Duff, J. Matheson, J.
Duncan, Visct. Maule, rt. hon. F.
Duncan, G. Mitcalfe, H.
Duncannon, Visct. Mitchell, T. A.
Duncombe, T. Morrison, J.
Dundas, F. Muntz, G. F.
Dundas, D. Murray, A.
Easthope, Sir J. Napier, Sir C.
Ebrington, Visct. O'Brien, J.
Egerton, Lord F. O'Connell, M. J.
Ellice, rt. hon. E. O'Conor Don
Ellice, E. Ogle, S. C. H.
Etwall, R. Ord, W.
Evans, W. Oswald, J.
Ewart, W. Paget, Col.
Ferguson, Col. Paget, Lord A.
Fitzroy, Lord C. Palmerston, Visct.
Forster, M. Parker, J.
Pattison, J. Stansfield, W. R. C.
Pendarves, E. W. W. Staunton, Sir G. T.
Philips, G. R. Stuart, Lord J.
Plumridge, Capt. Strickland, Sir G.
Polhill, F. Strutt, E.
Ponsonby, hn. C. F. C. Tancred, H. W.
Protheroe, E. Thompson, Ald.
Pryse, P. Tollemache, hon. F. J.
Pulsford, R. Tower, C.
Rawdon, Col. Trelawny, J. S.
Redington, T. N. Troubridge, Sir E. T.
Repton, G. W. J. Vane, Lord H.
Roche, E. B. Vivian, J. H.
Roebuck, J. A. Wakley, T.
Ross, D. R. Walker, R.
Russell, Lord J. Warburton, H.
Russell, Lord E. Ward, H. G.
Scott, R. Watson, W. H.
Scott, hon. F. Wawn, J. T.
Seymour, Lord Williams, W.
Sheil, rt. hon. R. L. Wilshire, W.
Shelburne, Earl of Wood, C.
Sheridan, R. B. Worsley, Lord
Smith, B. Wrightson, W. B.
Smith, J. A. Wyse, T.
Somerville, Sir W. M. TELLERS.
Somes, J. Buller, C.
Stanley, hon. W. O. Milnes, M.
List of the NOES.
Acland, Sir T. D. Brooke, Sir A. B.
Acland, T. D. Bruce, Lord E.
A'Court, Capt. Buck, L. W.
Adare, Visct. Buller, Sir J. Y.
Ainsworth, P. Burrell, Sir C. M.
Alford, Visct. Campbell, J. H.
Allix, J. P. Cardwell, E.
Antrobus, E. Carnegie, hon. Capt.
Arbuthnott, hon. H. Castlereagh, Visct.
Archdall, Capt. M. Chelsea, Visct.
Arkwright, G. Christopher, R. A.
Astell, W. Chute, W. L. W.
Bailey, J., jun. Clayton, R. R.
Baillie, Col. Clerk, rt. hn. Sir G.
Baird, W. Clifton, J. T.
Baldwin, B. Clive, Visct.
Baring, T. Clive, hon. R. H.
Baring, rt. hon. W. B. Cockburn, rt. hn. Sir G.
Barrington, Visct. Codrington, Sir W.
Baskerville, T. B. M. Cole, hon. H. A.
Bell, M. Collett, W. R.
Bentinck, Lord G. Colquhoun, J. C.
Bernard, Visct. Colvile, C. R.
Blackburn, J. I. Compton, H. C.
Blackstone, W. S. Connolly, Col.
Blakemore, R. Coote, Sir C. H.
Bodkin, W. S. Corry, rt. hon. H.
Boldero, H. G. Cripps, W.
Borthwick, P. Damer, hon. Col.
Bowles, Adm. Darby, H.
Boyd, J. Davies, D. A. S.
Bradshaw, J. Dawnay, hon. W. H.
Bramston, T. W. Deedes, W.
Brisco, M. Denison, E. B.
Broadley, H. Dickinson, F. H.
Broadwood, H. Douglas, Sir H.
Douglas, Sir C. E. Kirk, P.
Douglas, J. D. S. Knight, F. W.
Dowdeswell, W. Knightley, Sir C.
Drummond, H. H. Lawson, A.
Du Pre, C. G. Lennox, Lord A.
Eastnor, Visct. Leslie, C. P.
Eaton, R. J. Liddell, hon. H. T.
Egerton, W. T. Lincoln, Earl of
Egerton, Sir P. Lockhart, W.
Entwisle, W. Lowther, Sir J. H.
Escott, B. Lygon, hon. Gen.
Farnham, E. B. Mackenzie, T.
Fielden, W. Mackenzie, W. F.
Fellowes, E. M'Geachy, F. A.
Filmer, Sir E. M'Neill, D.
Fitzmaurice, hon. W. Mahon, Visct.
Fitzroy, hon. H. Manners, Lord C. S.
Flower, Sir J. March, Earl of
Forester, hon. G. C. W. Martin, C. W.
Fox, S. L. Martin, T. B.
Fremantle, rt. hn. Sir T. Maxwell, hon. J. P.
Gaskell, J. Milnes Meynell, Capt.
Gladstone, rt. hn. W. E. Mildmay, H. St. J.
Gladstone, Capt. Miles, P. W. S.
Glynne, Sir S. R. Mordaunt, Sir J.
Godson, R. Mundy, E. M.
Gordon, hon. Capt. Neeld, J.
Gore, M. Neville, R.
Gore, W, O. Nicholl, rt. hn. J.
Gore, W. R. O. Norreys, Lord
Goulburn, rt. hon. H. Ossulston, Lord
Graham, rt. hn. Sir J. Oswald, A.
Granby, Marq. of Packe, C. W.
Greene, T. Packington, J. S.
Grimsditch, T. Palmer, R.
Grimston, Visct. Palmer, G.
Hale, R. B. Patten, J. W.
Hamilton, C. J. B. Peel, rt. hn. Sir R.
Hamilton, J. H. Peel, J.
Hamilton, W. J. Pennant, hon. Col.
Hamilton, Lord C. Pigot, Sir R.
Hampden, R. Pollington, Visct.
Harris, hon. Capt. Pringle, A.
Hepburn, Sir T. B. Rashleigh, W.
Herbert, rt. hn. S. Richards, R.
Hervey, Lord A. Rolleston, Col.
Hill, Lord E. Rous, hon. Capt.
Hinde, J. H. Ryder, hon. G. D.
Hogg, J. W. Sanderson, R.
Holmes, hn. W. A'C. Sandon, Visct.
Hope, hon. C. Seymour, Sir H. B.
Hope, A. Shaw, rt. hon. F.
Hope, G. W. Shirley, E. P.
Hornby, J. Smith, rt. hn. T. B. C.
Hotham, Lord Smollett, A.
Hughes, W. B. Smythe, Sir H.
Hussey, A. Somerset, Lord G.
Hussey, T. Somerton, Lord
Inglis, Sir R. H. Sotheron, T. H. S.
Irton, S. Spooner, R.
James, Sir W. C. Stewart, J.
Jermyn, Earl Stuart, H.
Jocelyn, Visct. Sturt, H. C.
Johnstone, Sir J. Taylor, J. A.
Jones, Capt. Tennent, J. E.
Kelly, F. Thesiger, Sir F.
Kemble, H. Thornhill, G.
Tomline, G. Wodehouse, E.
Trench, Sir F. W. Wood, Col.
Trevor, hon. G. R. Wood, Col. T.
Trollope, Sir J. Wortley, hon. J. S.
Vernon, G. H. Wortley, hon. J. S.
Vesey, hon. T. Wynne, Sir W. W.
Villiers, Visct. Yorke, hon. E. T.
Vivian, J. E. TELLERS.
Welby, G. E. Young, J.
Wellesley, Lord C. Baring, H.
Paired off.
White, H. Alexander, N.
Arundel, Lord Bagot, hon. W.
James, W. Bailey, J.
Collins, W. Barneby, J.
Osborne, B. Bateson, T.
Leader, J. T. Botfield, B.
Villiers, hon. C. Brownrigg, J. S.
Tufnell, H. Bruce, C.
O'Brien, C. Cochrane, A.
Morison, Gen. Dodd, G.
Acheson, Visct. Dugdale, W. S.
Johnson, Gen. Duncombe, hon. W.
O'Ferrall, R. M. Duncombe, hon. O.
Reid, Sir J. R. Elphinstone, H.
Stanton, W. H. Estcourt, T. G.
Standish, C. Forbes, W.
Ricardo, L. Fuller, A. E.
Ramsbottom, J. Heathcote, Sir W.
Lyall, G. Hodgson, F.
White, S. Hodgson, R.
Fielden, J. Houldsworth, T.
Hallyburton, Lord J. Jolliffe, Sir W. H.
Cayley, E. S. Knightly, H. G.
Lemon, Sir C. Legh, G. S.
Attwood, M. Loftus Visct.
Bell, J. Lindsay, H. H.
Stewart, P. M. Maclean, D.
Gisborne, T. Marton, G.
Philips, M. Maunsell, T. P.
Archbold, R. Morgan, O.
Dundas, W. D. Morgan, C.
Clements, Lord Neeld, J.
Loch, J. Northland, Visct.
Duke, Sir J. Praed, W. J.
Phillpots, J. Price, R.
Pechell, Capt. Round, C. G.
D'Eyncourt, rt. hn. C. T. Round, J.
Barnard, E. G. Sheppard, T.
Fox, Col. Shirley, E. J.
Rice, E. R. Spry, Sir S. T.
Rutherfurd, A. Stanley, E.
Murphy, Serg. Sutton, hon. H. M.
Hume, J. Wynn, rt. hon. C.

House adjourned at a quarter to three o'clock.

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