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Title: McIlrath, Hamilton to McIlrath, William, 1863
CollectionThe McIlrath Letters: A family history in letters from New Zealand to Ireland (1860-1915) [Bassett, McKee et al.]
SenderMcIlrath, Hamilton
Sender Gendermale
Sender Occupationcattle driver
Sender Religionunknown
OriginRangiora, New Zealand
DestinationKillinchy, Co. Down, Northern Ireland
RecipientMcIlrath, William
Recipient Gendermale
Doc. No.
Partial Date
Doc. Type
Word Count441
Genrework, Maorie riots, family
TranscriptRangiora, December 5th 1863
Dear Brother
I write to let you know that I am well at present, and hopes you are
the same. I should have wrote before this but there is nothing very
pertinent to mention and James always lets you know how I am in
his letters. I am always in the same place and getting on as usual.
James and Wm. James Alexander came down to see me a month ago,
they are both well and going to commence fencing in the section we
bought. I think I shall stop where I am for a time yet.
I like the place very well and gets the highest wages
going £70 a year and Board and a bachelors life no
woman in the house to trouble us. The Maories in
the North Island has been very troublesome lately the
more they are civilized the worse they get burning
houses and killing the settlers. But I think they will be
forced to give over soon, the Government gave grants
of land to all the young men that would volunteer and
has raised a force of about three thousand men besides
2 thousand from England they took one of their Pa's
last week and killed 400 natives and took 500 prisoners
they intend to give them a dressing before they have
done with them that they shall remember. The very
men that they entrusted most and thought they had
made saints of they were the leaders of the rebellion.
I expect Mother would like to see one of them with their
face tattoed and all the Devices you could imagine painted on
them and a Boars Tusk strung to their ear. I expect you have heard
long before this that Robin Adair was killed by the kick of a horse
he is buried close by where I am. This is our summer now and the
commencement of Hay making. You will be thinking of what sports
you will have for Christmas. Why dont John and Robert write and let
me know how they are knocking along. I expect John will have as big
a moustache as me that has not shaved this last two years. I have no
more to say but with my warmest wishes for Father and Mother and
you all

I remain Affectionately
Your Brother H McIlrath

Remember me to Uncle William and Aunt Jane and all who wishes
to be remembered you might write oftener you have got more
interesting news than I have. You might direct your mail for me co
Rangiora, Canterbury, New Zealand as I might be in Rangiora for
some time yet.