Some Experiences of a New Guinea Resident Magistrate
SOME EXPERIENCES OF A NEW
GUINEA RESIDENT MAGISTRATE
SOME EXPERIENCES OFA NEW GUINEA RESIDENTMAGISTRATE BY CAPTAIN C.A. W. MONCKTON, F.R.G.S., F.Z.S.,F.R.A.I., SOMETIME OFFICIAL MEMBEROF EXECUTIVE AND LEGISLATIVE COUNCILS,RESIDENT MAGISTRATE AND WARDEN FORGOLDFIELDS, HIGH SHERIFF AND HIGHBAILIFF, AND SENIOR OFFICER OF ARMEDCONSTABULARY FOR H.M.’s POSSESSION OFNEW GUINEA WITH 37 ILLUSTRATIONSAND A MAP
LONDON: JOHN LANE, THE BODLEY HEAD, VIGO ST.
NEW YORK: JOHN LANE COMPANY MCMXXI
WILLIAM CLOWES AND SONS, LIMITED, LONDON AND BECCLES, ENGLAND
It appears to be the custom, for writers of books of thisdescription, to begin with apologies as to their style, orexcuses for their production. I pretend to no style; buthave simply written at the request of my wife, for herinformation and that of my personal friends, an account of mylife and work in New Guinea. To the few “men that know”who still survive, in one or two places gaps or omissions mayappear to occur; these omissions are intentional, as I have nowish to cause pain to broken men who are still living, nor todistress the relations of those who are dead. Much history isbetter written fifty years after all concerned in the making aredead. Governor or ruffian, Bishop or cannibal, I have writtenof all as I found them; I freely confess that I think when thelast muster comes, the Great Architect will find—as I trust myreaders will—some good points in the ruffians and the cannibals,as well, possibly, as some vulnerable places in the armour ofGovernors and Bishops.
I do not pretend that this book possesses any scientific value;such geographical, zoological, and scientific work as I have doneis dealt with in various journals; but it does picture correctly thelife of a colonial officer in the one-time furthest outpost of theEmpire—men of whose lives and work the average Briton knowsnothing.
Conditions in New Guinea have altered; where one of SirWilliam MacGregor’s officers stood alone, there now rest anumber of Australian officials and clerks. Much credit is nowannually given to this host; some little, I think, might be fairlyallotted to the dead Moreton, Armit, Green, Kowold, De Lange,and the rest of the gallant gentlemen who gave their lives to winone more country for the flag and to secure the Pax Britannicato yet another people.
I have abstained from putting into the mouths of natives theridiculous jargon or “pidgin English” in which they are popularlysupposed to converse. The old style of New Guinea officerspoke Motuan to his men, and I have, where required, merelygiven a free translation from that language into English. Inviiirecent books about New Guinea, written by men of whom Inever heard whilst there, I have noticed sentences in pidginEnglish, supposed to have been spoken by natives, which I woulddefy any European or native in New Guinea, in my time, eitherto make sense of or interpret.
When the history of New Guinea comes to be written, Ithink it will be found that the names of several people stand outfrom the others in brilliant prominence; amongst its Governors,Sir William MacGregor; its Judges, that of Sir Francis Winter;its Missions, that of the Right Rev. John Montagu Stone-Wigg,first Anglican Bishop; and in the development of its naturalresources, that of the pioneer commercial firm of Burns, Philpand Company.
LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS
|TO FACE PAGE|
|The Author Frontispiece|
|Cocoanut Grove, near Samarai||6|
|The Rt. Hon. Sir William MacGregor, P.C., G.C.M.G., C.B., etc.||10|
|R. F. L. Burton, Esq., and his Motuan boys||62|
|Port Moresby from Government House, showing the Government Offices||70|
|Bushimai, chief of the Binandere people||80|
|Village in the Trobriand Islands||86|
|A Motuan girl||112|
|Dobu house, Mekeo||114|
|Masks of the Kaiva Kuku Society, Mekeo||118|
|House at Apiana, Mekeo||120|
|Village near Port Moresby||136|
|Sir George Le Hunte, K.C.M.G.||148|
|The Laloki Falls||156|
|Two Motuan girls||162|
|Sir G. Le Hunte presenting medals to Sergeant Sefa and Corporal Kimai||166|
|Kaili Kaili natives||166|
|The Merrie England at Cape Nelson and Giwi’s canoes||168|
|Giwi and his sons||174|
|View from the Residency, Cape Nelson||178|
|Toku, son of Giwi||184|
|Grave of Wanigela, sub-chief of the Maisina tribe||208|
|Kaili Kaili dancing||208|
|Captain F. R. Barton, C.M.G.||212|
|Armed Constabulary, Cape Nelson detachment||216|
|Kaili Kaili carriers with the Doriri Expedition||218|
|The Merrie England at Cape Nelson||234|
|Group, including Sir G. Le Hunte, K.C.B., Sir Francis Winter, C.J., etc.||264|
|Oiogoba Sara, chief of the Baruga tribe||270|
SOME EXPERIENCES OF A NEW
GUINEA RESIDENT MAGISTRATE
In the year 1895 I found myself at Cooktown in Queensland,aged 23, accompanied by a fellow adventurer, F. H.Sylvester, and armed with £100, an outfit particularly unsuitedto the tropics, and a letter of introduction fromthe then Governor of New Zealand, the Earl of Glasgow, tothe Lieutenant-Governor of British New Guinea, Sir WilliamMacGregor.
After two or three weeks of waiting, we took passage by themail schooner Myrtle, 150 tons, one of two schooners ownedby Messrs. Burns, Philp and Co., of Sydney, and subsidized by theBritish New Guinea Government to carry monthly mails to thatpossession; in fact they were then the only means of communicationbetween New Guinea and the rest of the world. Thesetwo vessels, after a chequered career in the South Seas, as slavers—theneuphoniously termed in Australia “labour” vessels—had,by the lapse of time and purchase by a firm of high reputeand keen commercial ambition, now been promoted to the dignityof carrying H.M. Mails, Government stores for the Administrationof New Guinea, and supplies to the branches of the firm at Samaraiand Port Moresby; and were, under the energetic superintendenceof their respective masters, Steel and Inman, extending thecommercial interests of their owners throughout both the Britishand German territories bordering on the Coral Sea.
Good old ships long since done with, the bones of one liescattered on a reef, the other when last I saw her was a coal hulkin a Queensland port. And good old Scotch firm of trade grabbersthat owned them, sending their ships, in spite of any risk, wherevera possible bawbee was to be made, and taking their hundred per2cent. of profit with the same dour front they took their frequentlytrebled loss. Mopping up the German trade until the day camewhen the heavily subsidized ships of the Nord Deutscher Lloyddrove them out; as well they might, for in one scale hung theefforts of a small company of British merchants, unassisted as everby its country or Government, the other, a practically ImperialCompany backed by the resources of a vast Empire.
But to return to the Myrtle, then lying in the bay off themouth of the Endeavour River, to which we were