Society Islands, 1843-6 extra

Scope and Content

Includes letters from British naval ships' captains and proclamations of Queen Pomare

Includes letters from

Cmdr,---, HMS Vindictive, Papeete, 1 Aug 1843 to LMS Committee, Tahiti: Queen Pomare willing to accept British proposals if they come from the mission with her backing

Cmdr,---, HMS Vindictive, Papeete, 1 Aug 1843 to Queen Pomare: requests her to have the sabbath observed on Tahitian Monday (pencil annotation - 'see Journal / reports p40')

Proclamation of Queen Pomare, Royal Palace, Papeete 1 August 1843: from 27 August Sunday will be kept on Tahitian Monday 'the European Sabbath'.

Lt Hunt HM ketch Basilisk, Papeete 18 Mar 1844 to the protestant mission, Tahiti: explain discrepancy between account sent Ld Aberdeen by George Pritchard and their letter to French adminral 21 Sep 1842

Lt Hunt, HM ketch Basilisk, Papeete 19 Mar 1844 to the protestant mission, Tahiti: has a circular been received from HMG ?

Lt Hunt, HM ketch Basilisk, Papeete 20 Mar 1844 to the protestant mission, Tahiti: quotes letter from consul general William Miller urging British residents to respect French on Pomare's islands and not resist them.

John Jesson, on behalf of the Committee, Point Venus [northernmost tip of Tahiti] 22 Mar 1844 to Lt Hunt,Basilisk: unaware what [George] Pritchard may have told Ld Aberdeen; committee's letter of 21 Sep 1842 to Admiral du Petit Thomas only meant to urge people to remain peaceful - not express approval of French

Admiral Richard Thomas, HMS Dublin, Lat 14.46 S, Long 80.33 W, 18 Nov 1844 to John Jesson: acknowledges letter of 10 July with vote of thanks to Lt Hunt of Basilisk; states Basilisk had been left at Tahiti 'to ensure respect to the Mission under the altered aspect of the political affairs of the Island.'

William Miller, British consul general, Papeete, 16 Jan 1845 to Robert Thomson (mission secretary): had passed on to Foreign Office his letter of protest (11 Jan) at George Platt being prevented holding worship at Papenaa

William Miller, departing British consul general, Papeete, 14 Feb 1845 to Robert Thomson (secretary, mission committee): grateful for their conduct and hopes they continue similarly, thus ensuring British protection.

Cmdr & Senior Officer Andrew S Hamond, HM sloop Salamander, 6 May 1846 to Robert Thomson, Thomas Heath and George Stallworthy, Missionaries, Papeete: had letter from Governor Bruat asking him to warn three British missionaries to cease subversive complaints that French protectorate was suppressing their free religious expression. Adds that British authorities will not protect them if they cast doubt on the durability of French rule. Encloses copy of his reply to Governor Bruat that he had cautioned them to desist.

--- and --- HMS Salamander, 25 Aug 1845 to Robert Thomson: One key of vacant mssion church at Point Venus has been entrusted to Tahitians; recommends putting a missionary there soon. Problems of permits and passports to travel on missionary business. Regrets separation of John Orsmond who says he will remain at Tarrawa; has advised him not to become partisan.

Robert Thomson, Thomas Heath and George Stallworthy, Papeete, 4 May 1846 to Governor Bruat: 'Offer of Mediation No 1' : refers to John Thomson's letter of 30 Mar 1846 urging conciliation. Recent disturbances among Tahitians had been aroused by French measures in the Leeward Islands, especially Huahine. Although these three acted without consulting other missionaries they are sure they would join in offering to mediate with the people or, if wished, with Queen Pomare.

Robert Thomson, Thomas Heath and George Stallworthy 'No. 3', Papeete, 5 May 1846 acknowledges Governor Armand Joseph Bruat's reply: will need travel permits if they are to communicate with people. Would rather not get involved in negotiations with Queen Pomare over a French protectorate as her representatives in Europe are dealing directly with French and British governments.

Robert Thomson, Thomas Heath and George Stallworthy 'No. 5', Papeete, 7 May 1846 acknowledges Governor Bruat's reply but regrets his withdrawing acceptance of their offer to mediate. They have not been objecting publicly against the French and they accept their rule 'de facto'. Robert Thomson has interpreted and reinforced to Tahitians the British admiral's message that Britain would not intervene against the French protectorate.

Robert Thomson, Thomas Heath and George Stallworthy 'No. 8', Papeete, 7 May 1846 to Captain Hamond: Governor Bruat has written to Hamond about the missionaries 'improper political interference'. Missionaries say Hamond has misunderstood and replied to the Governor in ignorance of the whole correspondence, which they now copy to him.

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