Wellington Independent 4 March 1846
THE AFFAIRS OF THE HUTT.
In our last, we furnished the movement of the troops up to six o”clock on Tuesday evening. That evening a picket was thrown across the potatoe ground, the Maories being encamped on a plot of land across a creek, at the foot of a high hill thickly covered with bush. The natives followed the military custom by likewise having a line of pickets across the field. During the night the artillery under the command of Capt. Henderson, arrived on the ground, and by dint of great labour and perseverance, some field pieces and howitzers were conveyed to the camp. We cannot refrain from mentioning the characteristic zeal of the officers and blue jackets of the men of war, while assisting in dragging up the guns and ammunition.
On the following morning, Wednesday, affairs seemed approaching to a crisis. The natives refused to leave, demanding payment for their crops. His Excellency stated that quit they must, and as for compensation, he could not listen to it there, but they must bring it forward at their own place, Wanganui. His Excellency then gave the Maories till twelve o”clock, to consider whether they would depart, and if not, he informed them that they would be attacked immediately. By persuasion of Mr. Taylor, a Church Missionary, the natives made a semblance of departing, and marched into the bush. In consequence the artillery was brought down to the stockade near the bridge.
His Excellency, with Major Richmond, returned to town, and many were sanguine that affairs were settled in a peaceable and friendly manner. The military, when they left this place for the Hutt, expected to return the same evening, and did not therefore carry with them the necessary articles for a protracted stay. Owing also to the supposed settlement of the question, Captain Eyton was ordered over to Wellington, on Thursday morning, with the Grenadier company of the 96th, and Capt. Hardy with 76 men of the 58th.
Early on Thursday morning, Major Last discovered eight or nine armed natives on the ground which the main body of their countrymen occupied the proceeding day: who made an excuse that they were searching far trinkets. It is more than probable that they were acting as a look-out, upon the military. Major Last, ordered some men who had been employed by the authorities, to commence a road from Mr. Boulcott”s house to the camp. There is now an excellent road for carts up to the camp, thanks to Col. Hulme, and Major Last By the directions of the last officer, the ground has been cleared for the space of about 300 square feet, tents erected, logs thrown up for a breastwork, and preparations commenced for erecting a block-house, in which, we believe, it is intended to station 150 men. In the evening a party of the natives carried off a fine pig the property of a man named Sennox, striking the owner of the animal on the leg with the back part of a towahawk, and snapping a gun in his face. A second party entered the house of a man named Leverton (sic), and carried off a gun, whilst a third party robbed the warre (sic) of a man named Giles. In consequence of these outrages, a party of settlers remained up armed during the night to protect their property.
During Friday, the natives threatened the life of every settler in the district, in case one of their party was shot. They also threatened to pillage the houses of the settlers.
On Saturday, Captain Eyton returned to the Hutt, with 42 of the 96th; and Major Arney, with 94 of the 58th, and 73 of the 99th. Major Arney of the 58th relieving the commanding officer, Major Last.
On Sunday, March 1, the natives carried out their threats by pillaging the unfortunate settlers on a most extensive scale. The robberies on the Waiwatu were perpetrated in the earlier part of the day by from fifty to one hundred men of the Taupo tribe, whilst those on the Hutt were the acts of about one hundred of the Ngatirangatahi. F. Pare, the chief and subservient tool of Rangihaeata, is notonous for having butchered five of the unfortunates who fell at Wairau. One of the settlers, irritated at the loss of his property drew a sword upon a native who merely imitated the notes of the kaka, when he was joined by numbers who came from the bush, and the white man was compelled to fly for his life.
The following is a correct list of the Europeans who have been robbed of all they possessed:-
ON THE WAIWATU.
Francis Whiteman, and three adults.
John Russell, wife, and one child.
James Swam and brother.
William Leckie, and William Parker, and one child.
John Dounie, wife, and four children.
William Ebden, mother, brother, and servant, and three children.
John Jackson, and wife.
James Holmes, wife, and five children.
William Thomas, wife, and five children.
James McEwen, wife, and three children.
David Galloway, wife, and three children.
David McEwen, wife, mother, and three children.
William Tannahill, wife, and three children.
ON THE HUTT.
Charles Collis, wife, and two children.
Robert Fairweather, wife, and five children.
Thomas Hughes, wife, and four children.
Samuel Burnett, wife, brother, and five children.
John Sutherland, wife, and three children.
Thomas Reid, wife, and one child.
Total forty-four adults, and fifty-one children,
Thus ninety-six individuals, men, women, and children, were stripped of all they possessed on Sunday.
About 12 o”clock at night a deputation from the unfortunate men waited upon His Excellency Captain Grey in Wellington, and laid before him their grievances. His Excellency promised to see into the case as early as possible, and took the depositions of the men with his own hands. Monday, March 2. Various rumours of a conflicting nature were were rife in town. The out-settler, who had not been robbed, terrified at the idea of losing their property, began to remove their most valuable articles to a place of safety. About 80 more troops were ordered for the Hutt, and it was generally understood that martial law was to be proclaimed. In the afternoon a detachment of the troops were sent up the Waiwatu. A native threw a spear at one of the 96th, ripping up the sleeve of his jacket, and tearing the flesh on his arm. In the afternoon, another body of military departed from town for the Hutt.
Tuesday, March 3. At daybreak, the natives commenced firing on the grenadier company of the 96th, under the command of Capt. Eyton, who were stationed some distance from the camp. Capt. Eyton”s party returned the fire in a most spirited manner, and compelled the natives after some time to retire, with what loss cannot be ascertained. At the same time, a party of natives in the bush commenced firing on the encampment, but without inflicting any injury.
A despatch arrived in town about 11 o”clock, when his Excellency ordered H.M. Steamer DRIVER to prepare to receive bodies of troops to take over to the Hutt. 50 of the 58th, 20 of the 96th, and 30 of the 99th, under the command of Lieutenant Barclay, were conveyed on board by half-past one, and at 2 o”clock the DRIVER weighed anchor, and steamed over to Petoni. In the afternoon, his Excellency Captain Grey, following Up that energetic line of policy which has characterized his proceedings to the present time, proclaimed the district lying to the south of Wainui in Cook”s Straits, to Castle Point on the East Coast, under Martial Law. Toward the afternoon, a party of natives drove a man name Cole from his land on the Waiwatu, and took possession of his goods. Fifty Volunteers were embodied, under the command of Mr. Watt, and in conjunction with thirty military, were thrown out to endeavour to cut off the plunderers from the main body. Between four and five o”clock yesterday evening, a heavy firing, as if of continuous volleys of musketry, was heard by parties at the Kora Kora, who were returning to Wellington.
The Commandant, Colonel Hulme, and Brigade Major McLerie, both returned to the Hutt yesterday afternoon. Major Last, of the 99th regt., with two hundred men under him, has been left in command at Wellington. Captain Graham, of H.M.S. Castor, likewise placed the blue jackets, small arm men, and marines, at his disposal if necessary. Major Last took the most effective and vigorous measures, last night, to ensure the safety of the town. A party of thirty men were stationed at the brick barracks at the brick barracks at Tiakiwai, with orders to protect the road, and keep up a constant communication with the barracks on Thorndon Flat. A second party was ordered to carry on the communication to the barracks on Lambton Quay, whilst other parties received orders to peramulate from Te Aro Pah to the same place. Strict injunctions were likewise given to all the pickets to prevent any native crossing their lines after dark.
So far, every measure of precaution was carried out, and acted upon.
A guard was likewise stationed at the residence of his Excellency.
The settlers along the Porirua road, generally, are described as being in a state of great anxiety and fear, owing to the fact of Ranghiaeata having threatened to destroy every white man within his reach, provided a Maori was killed. Many of the Porirua settlers have sent their wives and families into Wellington. Yesterday, C. Clifford, Esq., J P., departed for that district, taking with him a quantity of arms and ammunition for the use of the settlers, and with the intention of remaining on the spot to cheer them with his presence.
New Zealand Spectator and Cook”s Strait Guardian 14 March 1846
uesday, 10th March, 1846.
Before Henry St. H ill, Esq.,
Wiremu and Kumete, two natives, were examined before Henry St. Hill, Esq., Police Magistrate, in the gaol, charged with having been concerned in the robberies that took place in the valley of the Hutt on Sunday, the 1st inst.
Thomas Jackson Hughes stated, that on that day his children informed him that a body of natives were coming towards the house; he went out, locked his door, and saw about 10 of them; one of the natives asked him for the key, which he refused to give, when he (the native) immediately pulled the window out of the frame, and went through into the house; three or four natives followed, and then deponent opened the door, when a general pillaging commenced, and after they had taken everything of any value, they decamped; they all presented their guns at witness; witness swore most positively to the two prisoners as being two of the party of natives who came to his house on the day in question. A neighbour who was in the house at the time corroborated the statement of Hughes, but swore only to the Prisoner Kumete.
Charlet Collis stated that a party of natives came to his house on Sunday, the 1st instant, and robbed him of everything of any value; swears to the prisoner Kumete, but cannot identify Wiremu as being there; Kumete was armed with a cutlass, which he flourished about in a threatening manner. William Sennox stated that on Thursday, the 26th February, a party of three or four natives came to his house, stole a quautity of bed clothing and wearing apparel, and then proceeded to his pigstye, and killed a large pig weighing about 2 cwt., and maimed another with their tomahawks; they carried away the one they had killed, but witness succeeded in getting the other one from them; swears positively to the prisoner Kumete as being one of the party; has known him for 15 months, and cannot be mistaken, but cannot swear to the other prisoner.
James M”Kellup stated that he had been robbed of some shirts, &c, by a party of natives; swears to Kumete as being one of them.
Other witnesses were examined who fully identified Kumete as being concerned in all the robberies — and both prisoners were committed to take their trial at the Supreme Court.
New Zealand Spectator and Cook”s Strait Guardian 28 March 1846
Supreme Court Sittings,
Friday, 27th March, 1846.
BEFORE MR. JUSTICE CHAPMAN.
Yesterday the Court was opened with the usual formalities under a special commission appointed to try the natives charged with being concerned in the robberies and outrages committed in the Hutt district on Sunday the 1st inst. Considerable interest was excited by these trials, and there were a number of settlers in and about the Court House. A number of natives were also collected together in the space in front of it.
The following gentlemen were sworn in of the Grand Jury:— Mr. C. Clifford, J.P., foreman; Hon. H. W. Petre, J.P.; Major Baker, Capts. Daniell, J.P., and Sharp, Messrs. G. Baker, K. Bethune, W. Fitzherbert, A. Hort, A. E. M”Donogh, J.P., A. McDonald, T. M. Partridge, W. Swainson, J.P., and R. Stokes. His Honor, in his charge to the Grand Jury, stated that a commission had been issued by his “Excellency to try the natives who were alleged to have been concerned in the robberies and outrages which had taken place in the Hutt on Sunday, the 1st March, and that as it was usual on such occasions to deliver the gaol, two bills would also be presented to them for felonies committed by white persons in the town. He would repeat what he had on a previous occasion stated, and which could not be made public to too great an extent, that where the British sovereignty was established, and a portion of an English population lived in a country inhabited by an aboriginal population, the English law prevailed in all criminal matters arising out of questions between the two races. The first bill which would be preferred against the two natives would be for a robbery committed in the house of a person of the name of Hughes, but there were several other indictments against them. He would remark, that the province of the Grand Jury was not so much to decide on the actual guilt of the prisoner as whether there was such an amount of evidence as would establish a prima facie charge, leaving it to the prisoner to make good his defence; it would be sufficient if there was so much doubt as would justify the Judge in putting the case to the Jury.
His Honor then briefly alluded to the other cases which were set down for trial. The Grand Jury then retired, and found true bills against all the prisoners, except E. O”Hara, and D. Townshend, for a burglary, and stealing a shilling from a native named Moses. After a patient and lengthened examination of the witnesses, in which the Rev. S. Ironside kindly offered his services as interpreter, there did not appear to be sufficient evidence to support the charge, and the bill was ignored.
We must defer the report of the trials until next week.
New Zealand Spectator and Cook”s Strait Guardian 4 April 1846
SUPREME COURT SITTINGS.
Friday, 27th March, 1846.
BEFORE MR. JUSTICE CHAPMAN.
Wiremu and Kumete, two aboriginal natives, were put to the bar charged with a robbery at the house of Thomas Jackson Hughes, at the Hutt, about four miles above the bridge, on Sunday, the 1st March, the day when various outrages were committed, and several houses were pillaged by the natives.
Mr. Hanson conducted the prosecution.
Mr. Ross (who was specially retained by the Government) conducted the defence.
The defence of the prisoners was an alibi.
T. J. Hughes deposed, that about half past four o”clock on the Sunday in question he was informed by his children that the natives were coming; he sent his family away into the bush and locked up the house; ten natives came up; he spoke to one, who was a chief named Epau; Epau asked him for the key of the house, which he refused to give; one of the natives then began to batter the door with his gun, and others tore out the window frame; some entered the house by the window, and so did the witness, and then opened the door to prevent its being broken; the first of the natives who entered by the door was the prisoner Wiremu, the other had entered by the window; they were all armed with guns or swords; they pillaged the house of every thing; a man named Harris came up to the house, and when the natives went away followed them with Hughes to a spot at a short distance, where they were dividing the plunder.
The witness swore positively to the two prisoners, whom he had known for eighteen months or two years; when he first knew Kumete he was tattooed on the chin, but the outer line on each side of the face from the cheek bones round the face were newly made; Kumete had not been newly tattooed more than a month; knew a native very like Kumete, but when he last saw him he was not tattooed at all; had no doubt whatever that both the prisoners were present when his house was robbed.
Abraham Harris deposed generally to the same facts, and spoke confidently to the person of Kumete; could not swear to Wiremu; knew a native very similar to Kumete, but he was not tattooed when he last saw him.
John Giles was present and swore to the person of Kumete, but did not remember the other prisoner.
Arbuthnot Burnett and Mary Burnett both deposed to having seen Kumete, who came to their house about 300 or 400 yards from Hughes” on the same afternoon; he had a sword with him; Mary Burnett knew another native very like Kumete; neither of them saw Wiremu on that day.
Charles Collis also saw Kumete at his house on that day with a drawn sword; did not know Wiremu; nearly all the witnesses swore that when they first knew Kumete, the time varying from eight months to two years, he had tattoo on his chin.
For the defence.
Henry, Epuni”s son, and five other natives, proved that on Saturday afternoon, the 28th February, the prisoner Wiremu came with them from Petoni to the pa at Kai Wara Wara; that they saw him all the next day (Sunday) in the pa, and that it was impossible he could have been at the Hutt without their knowledge; that he was sent the next day with Kumete as the bearer of a message from the chief Taringra Kuri, at the desire of the Governor, to Kaparetehau at the Hutt, to desire him to intercept the stolen property; that they went away about the middle of the day; (Mr. Kemp accompanied them the latter part of the journey, and was with them when they were taken at the Hutt bridge.)
Taringa Kuri and eight other natives swore positively to the arrival of Wiremu on the Saturday at Kai Wara Wara, and that he remained there until the Monday,- and that Kumete came with the chief and others about the time the troops marched to the Hutt, (24th Feb.) and that he remained until the Monday; several of them remembered Kumete was playing cards on the Sunday afternoon.
One or two others were called to prove Kumete was in the pa all Sunday.
Mrs. Anderson was called, who proved she went into the pa on Sunday afternoon to look for one of her children and saw some natives playing cards, but could not remember whether Kumete was one of them.
Mr. Cervantes, of the 96th, had known the prisoner Kumete for twelve months quite well; he was very frequently at his house; had not seen him for about two months and a week; up to that time he had no tattoo whatever on his face.
The Jury after retiring for a short time found the prisoner Kumete guilty, and Wiremu not guilty.
The trial lasted until a late hour at night.
On the following day the prisoners were brought up for a robbery at the house of another settler named Chamberlain, but no evidence being offered they were acquitted.
They were next tried for stealing a pig the property of William Sennox a settler at the Hutt, on Thursday the 26th March. William Sennox deposed that a native chief named Epau and Kumete came to his house together, and that in about one minute Wiremu came up, took a fire-stick, lit his pipe, and went away towards some natives a short distance from the house: after some conversation, and in about five minutes Epau and Kumete went to his pig pound, which was close to his house, and began to cut and wound his pigs with a tomahawk; they killed one about 2001b. weight, and carried it away; when they began to kill the pigs several of the natives in the bush who had remained about thirty yards off came up and assisted; Wiremu was not amongst them. On his cross-examination the witness said, he had known Kumete well, and had had dealings with him for the last eight months; during all the time he had known him he was positive he was tatooed on the face and chin; the two single outer lines only had been added, and that lately.
His wife proved the same facts, but that Wiremu did not come up so soon as her husband had stated; he was four or five minutes after Epau and Kumete, and he lit his pipe and went away; she did not see him again.
For the defence Mr. Cervantes proved that he had known Kumete for twelve months; that he was very frequently at his (Mr. Cervantes”) house; that he had not seen him for about two months and a week; and that he was quite positive he had no tatoo whatever when he last saw him.
The Jury acquitted both prisoners.
Kumete was afterwards sentenced to ten years” transportation for the robbery at Hughes”.
New Zealand Spectator and Cook”s Strait Guardian 14 November 1846
List of Settlers who were plundered or driven from their homes on the Hutt and Waiwetu, in the district of Port Nicholson, by the insurgent natives, in the month of March, 1846, exhibiting the amount of their respective losses, and the aid affordrd by the Government and from Private contributions.
Name: Hart Udy, Amount of Propery lost: 1 11 6, Value received from Governmt. in provision & clothing: 0 13 5, Amount received from private contributions: 0 7 0, Total received in contributions, provision, and clothing: 1 0 5
Cole & Copeland
Thomas Jackson Hughes
William Ebden and Susan Roe
John Russel (sic)
Robert Sansom (sic)
Samuel Burnet (sic)
Stephen and James Swan
Magnus Manson, Senior
Magnus Manson, Junior
John Hogg, Senior
John Hogg, Junior
John Dash (sic)