The New Zealand Herald.
AUCKLAND, FRIDAY, NOVEMBER, 13. 1863. OURSELVES.
BPEOTEMUK AOENDO. 'Gilo every man thins ear, but few thy voice: Take each man's eeniiuro, but reserve thy Judgment. This above all,—To thine ownaelf ho true; And it mu»t follow, as the night Thou enlist not then bo f Also to any EQan."
In bringing forth any work which appeals to the. public for encouragement and support, it is customary to offer explanations of the plan and principles hv xhiclv its conductors intend to be gv'«'.&'u Wo should adhere- to this time-honour-id ohi'.jr vance, had we not already spokeu sufficiently of ourselves in the "Prospectus," which hs been for some time before tlia public, and which will be found in our present issue. :: We :: this morning enter upon a new career, with an anxious but hopeful confidence in the success of the- undertaking upon which we have adventured. Wo believe that the field is already sufficiently wide to afford us room; and it is' daily becoming demonstrable that that field is rapidly expanding. We have regulated our plans so that we may be able t<- keep pace with the spirit and requirements of the time. We enter upon our duties at an eventful era—one unquestionably of immediate anxiety, but whose troubles once disposed of, the prosperity. of every Province of New Zealand will, sve feel assured, be established upon a basis that will push forward the Colony to a foremost position amid the southern dependencies of the British" Empire. The native rebellion, though the most prominent and not the least important, is not the only question that agitates New Zealand. Of the war and its incidents we shall spare neither cost nor care to keep our readers fully, promptly, and reliably posted; and with that view we hav« made and shall continue to make every necessary arrangement. ■ • ••. Theje is another and vital question which quickens the coloniat pulse from the North .Cape to the Bluff, and which the Government are seeking to set ai. rest, dealing with it in the most considerate and : cor.cilia.tory spirit. . That question is the better government of the Middle Island, on which an animated and adjourned debate in the House of Representatives has already taken place. In the'. course of the arguments employed, allusions to removal of the seat of govern-
ment from. Auckland, of possible.■•separation of the. Northern and Southern''.islands, were made. Tb,ere ware likewise passing, remarks on th«i Constitutiou Act, its alteration ' and amendment; indefinite notions expressed of Provincial Councils and Superintendents, of well - regulated municipalities—these hints, coupled -with the- presentation of a- petition *or -repeal of the • Provinces -Act, arid the desire of the Auckland Provincial Council thiifc the Su-perintendent shall be one of the Council's election, are all suggestive of mroadii upon, if not the eventual overthrow of, the Constitution Mb, and of a possible construction of but two Provinces, comprising tie Northern aud Southern Islands, after an improved form of the two original Provinces ;of New Ulster and New Minister. Much temper, great forbearance, and thoughtful diiicximination will be, necessary, to constitute a form of legislature such as, without injusticp done to Auckland, shall prove satisfactory to the Middle Island. To Auckland the equitable adjustment of this exceedingly delicate question is not one whit less momentouj khan the successful extinction of the, native ' rebellion; and it is one which shall engage our utmost forethought and . consideration. . To the affair 3 of New Zealand at large, as our title indicates, we shall bestow unwearied attention. Even with such distracting questions ae the seat of government, and possible separation, there is an evident and an honourable anxiety on the. part of representatives, both of the North and South, to inculcat-s the old and wholesome precept, " Union is strength." Frequency and improvement in the means of steam communication, will smooth away ' many asperities and fortify us in the good and kindly opinion we are entertaining of each other. An honourable and manly rivalry in the race of competition is fairly . setting in, and the day is not very remote when New Zealand will win,and wear her as yet premature appellation, "The Britain of the South." We have said sufficient. We shall strive iia:-'i to fulfil promise made or -mplied. It cannot be expected that every arrangement shall be rendered perfect on the instant, but every care shall be bestowed, whether in our literary or mechanical departments, to deserve a share of the public support which we now most respectfully venture to solicit.
At "the front," in the rear, and throughout the centre an ominous calm prevails. " How it has chanced, —when, where, and by what means it is to be dispelled,—what its inaction may portend,—are matters of universal and impatient speculation:; seeing that upon the vigorous., unfaltering, and successful overthrow of rebellion the prosperity of New Zealand, and tho very salvation of the Northern Island now depend. Mcremere, after an unwonted amount of care in its fortification, —calculated to beget a belief that there, if anywhere, the Maori would make a stand, —has been abandoned without a, blow struck. The impassive aggeratioc of Maori truculence has melted away under Jiheer terrorism of British determination. The " courage" of the Maori warrior, harped and hymned in the most fulsome and, offensive terms his idolaters could employ, •like, the "long shot" bravery of "Bob Acres," has oozed away at the very moment Of threatened onset; and now we are, as Bariquo was, led into vexatious exclamation — Tho earth has bubbles as the water has. And these are of them; And what seemed corporal melted As breath into the wind. Would 'they had staid. —And so, no doubt, desired our brave and noble General, and the enthusiastic soldiery under hiis command. For our own part,. this dissolution of the Maori host is precisely what we have all along expected. According to his lights the Maori may be a warrior; but the inherent excellence of his valour lies in rapine, murder, surprise, and instant flight; for even when ten to one his endurance fails him when brought into contact with British resolution. Behind his palisades—ensconsed within his rifle pits, he has held out with more or less success; but against tho cutlasses of Cracroft and the bayonets of Cameron, with spirits fit to lead and men resolved- to follow, even these have been proved to be insignificant obstacles against British impetuosity-
What' is the complexion which this infcnrnecine struggle is next to assume? Such is the all -important question. It was once hoped that the strife would have ended as it commenced, in the Province of Taranaki. But when it assumed a more portentous ferin — when the belauded chivalry of Waikato, through their almost deified king-maker, proclaimed their determination to slay and spare not —when old man, women, and children were ruthelessly shot clown and tomahawked—when defiance was hurled at ourlieads —when our modes of defence were aped and imitated, and Maoris massed within pahs and rifle pits —it was' no wonder that vast costs should have been incurred to command the navigation of the Waikato, and to concentrate m>.a..antl munitions to conquer, confiscate, and possess it. Yet, no sooner are theso purposes in a fair way of accomplishment than the Maori host-, " like some insubstantial pageant, faded," becomes impalpable to sight and sense, and " leaves not a rack behind."Well, what is next to be ione ? Are %ve to change front to the rear 1 Or on what frtsh base are operations to be renewed ? The city teems with rumours, some of a cheering, jthers of a very depressing tendency. In one point it is more than satisfactory to learn that confidence in the conduct of General Cameron augments with the increasing difficulties with which he is surrounded. The gallant chief, after spending a few days in Auckland, returned, with his staff, to the AVaikato, on Wednesday, with what intent we know not; but with ihe unswerving resolution, w-3 are. persuaded, of hunting up and harras3ing the enemy that flies in every direction before him. Men, ships, and horses aro reported to be under orders for the Thames. The posts esi-ablished on the Waikato are to be left in a state of competent defence. Drury ani Papakura, which may be accounted the centre of our operations, will be rendered equal to any emergency; whilst with the reinforcements hourly expected from India and Ceylon, the Waitemata, Wairoa, Thames, their bights, ba.y«, and tributaries, 'vill soon be satisfactorily .ittended to. But hoy are the rebels to he. called to account. ? • best friends are free to confess that a crushing defeat would be the truest mercy to them. But how is a foe to
be defeated thai flies and disperses the.' instant he is confronted? It is quite true that his territory can feeoccupied and subdued; bat then, as now, the colonists would be exposed to sudden surprises, 'Wage slaughters, and ruinoua, inroads. Whilst bands of native guerillas are permitted to rifie, rob, and murder, vrs must lay our account with such things. But. are there no means of averting such scenes ! We feel confident that there are; ard with the daily experience of butcheries inflictud from the 4th of May last, we think . the time has fully arrived to mete out to Maori assassins the sniy practial measure of British retribution. ■That the'Maori'will ever risk a stricken field, whether in maintenance of Maori nationality, or in support of Maori Potataudom, we hold to be a'delusion and a snare." A fanatic few may believe in Maori determination, but no British soldier, sailor, or citizen will ever be brought to regard him in a higher light than that of an incendiary and assassin, wriggling like a serpent, to circumvent", and dexterous, as the fox to .escape-the punishment.due for murder. If the Maori will not meet us in fair fight, we must follow him in unfaltering pursuit. Maintaining our posts, our field force should-- be broken up into parties of twenties, thirties, fifties, and so on; and to each of these two or three aboriginal natives of. Australia should be sjttached in the. capjacity of trackers. The natural instinct of ..the aboriginal Australian is unerring. We appeal to any officer who has served in. the Australian Mounted Police in confirmation of the well-known fact, that they will follow up a trail with the.same unfailing result with which a pointer will follow a covey of partridge?!. We have-our-selves witnessed their power/s of tracking, and we know how two or three of them accomplished in as many weeks that which more than a thousand armed men had .failed to compass in a couple of years. Having expended thousands and tens of thousands in provision of men and munitions, surely the trial should be made, if even on a small scale, of furnishing our protectors with trackers competent to bring them into contact with murderers and destroyers.. Whilst'the Army is iu a atate of .compulsory inaction, the Australasian squadron reposes complacently on the waters of r,he Waitem'ata and'ihe Manukau. It is, at present, composed of five pendants, all of them screw steamers, and with the pronSse, as we are told, of a further and early augmentation both from England and the China seas. , . - ' Curacoa,''. bearing the broad pendant (blue) of Commodore' Sir William S. Wiseman, Bart., is anchored off Fort' Britomart. She xs a ship not altogether of the old school, but a hybrid between the Symondite and the. more modern style ■of clipper,—that is with beam predominating over length. She, as-well as ' Tribune, , '' a genuine Symondite, constructed at Sheerness in 1853, we're originally rated 31 guns; but , since Armstrongs have been adopted, the number has. been . reduced, whilst the weight of metal thrown has been, largely increased, ' Curacoa' now mounts 23 guns—sixteen plain bored 8-inch guns on her niain-di , six 40pounder Armstrong, guns on her; quarter-deck, and one 110-pounder -Armstrong pivot gun on her forecastle. She is arcomy frigate, constructed from, designs of the Navy. Office, at Pembroke, in 1854, with comfortable quarters for men and officers; her engines are 350 horsepower,, and she: measures 1571 tbnE. Her rated speed, as given by Hans Bnske, is 10.7 knofc ••* Miranda,' also at 'ancaor off Fort Britomart, is one of the screw corvettes of the ' Niger' order; she measures TiO39 tons , ., carries 15 guns, none of them Armstrongs—was con- , structed from the designi of Mr. Fincham, at Sheerness, in 1851—her engines are of 250 horse-power, ■ aitfd according to Hans Buske, whosa accuracy on this point we doubt, her iested speed is 10.75 knots. She is.commanded by Captain Robert Jenkins (1857). ' ' Esk* is the latest addition to the squadron. She is one of a numerous family of 21-gun corvettes; but a much more sightly and belter ordered ship than the . generality of , her class that we have seen in these waters! Like ' Curacoa,," she was constructed from designs at Millwall in 1854. She'measures 1169 tons, and has engines of 250 horse-power. Previous to her present commission, 'she underwent' an almost 'entire renovation. Her armament hof the.most powerful kind,. consisting of sixteen plain bored 8-inch guns, four 40-jiounder ■ $Fid one 110pounder pivot' Armstrong gun o*s>lier forecastle, two '2-pounder Armstrong bo?,t guns, and one 12-pounder Armstrong field gar-: For the complement of men and officers she'^eiijries,: her berth deck, gun and ward rooms are. well arranged; but, in our humble opinion, • ships of such formidable armament would be far ietter, both for the comfort of. their crew and for efficiency in conflict, by'being frigate'built'.'" Call then: corvettes as one may, what are they in reality after all but over-grpwii sloops, and as such with top-hamper from aloft falling upon the gunners in action, the wsight of their armament is so much more likely to "contribute to their discomfiture. Of the class to which she belongs, ' Esk' is a goodly specimen. She is handsomely and heavily sparred; vorv square; every thing aet up taut and ship shape. ; Without being what is" called a" show ship'," she is a ship that needs but to be seen to be appreciated. Our visit was brief. From the obliging young gentleman who went the rounds with us, we derived all the, information it was 1 in his power to impart; however, as we ara never at a loss in making our own nautical observations, we had a very satisfying tour of inspection,—and so gratifying that the Byronic apos-. trophe forced itself upon our recollection,:
White is the glassy deck, without a stain. Where on the watch the staid Lieutenant walks: Look on that part which Bacrsddoth remain For the lone chieftain; who majestic stalks, ■■ ' Silent and feared by all—not oft ho talks With aught beneath him, if he would preserve That strict restr»saf., whijh broken, evejr. balks " ' Conquest and f:irae: but Britons rarelj! nworve From law, however stern, which tettcls their ' Btreseth to ne?vo. I The ' Esk , is in command of Captain John F. G. Hamilton (1858), who wa,» tensor Lieutenant of "Leander," and promoted' for- services whilst attached to tins- Naval Brigade at the seige of Sebasto?3oL ■ • The two remaining ships, • Harrier, , and ' Eclipse/ are guardians of t)ie , Manukau waters. 'Harrier," now an old friend, is a screw sloop of 748 tons, 100 hods-power. ■-'She command of Sir Malcolm MacGregLr, Barb., and ■w£>.s builjj.at Pembroke in 185471 from designs figraished by the,,Navy-Offi ce . arrived"in
command of "Sir Malcolm MacGregor, ■ R*rt-. npoh Ms promotion' wte -fcumod. over to Wmmakder F. W. Sullivan. T!te ueryice E ol "ship and officers have been incessant and invaluable, and at a time of urgent need. . "Eclipse," in command or Commander R. C. Mayno, is a steam gun vessel of 700 fcoiis, 200 horse-power. She carries four, guns,.,one of them an Armstrong pivot gua cf 110 pounds. Her duties have been manifold asid important since the hour of" her. arrival, and 6hey have been performed with an alacrity and! zeal" beyond praise. With such soldiers and ships,—with powerful augmentations close at hand—with summer weather, and its long days and .short setting in, now, if ever, the rebels should b',.energetically dealt with. The war has be ,311 onfj of their own compelling. They, commenced iS with cold-blooded, deliberate assassinations. They, are following it up wit); stealthy imurdere of'defenceless women and children. Tbe- fruits of a-life of industry are the .serines of*fcheir vengeance. Agriculture •■ perishes. Commerce languishes. Enterprise stands still. And'.a great n,nd glorious country runs to ruinous w«uste until the murderer and marauder shall bo imperatively taught that life and property must.be preserved, and Law and Order maintained inviolate. . ' ' l ..•..'"
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