Land purchases by missionaries of the Church Missionary Society before 1840: a thesis presented in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Arts in History at Massey University
The missionaries of the Church Missionary Society in New Zealand were subjected to criticism as a result of their private land dealings. one critic in 1839, after a brief visit to the Bay of Islands claimed that they had been in the vanguard of a European conspiracy to rob the Maori of their lands. This was neither the first nor the last of such criticisms. This work will deal solely with the purchases made by members of the Church Missionary Society. only two Wesleyans are known to have purchased land on their own account whilst there is no evidence that the Roman Catholic missionaries bought land for private purposes in the short time which elapsed between their arrival in 1838 and the signing of the Treaty of Waitangi. The representatives of the three missionary bodies operating in New Zealand before 1840 also bought land for the purpose of establishing mission sites, but since there was no criticism or dispute arising from these purchases it is not proposed to include them in the scope of this work.