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Letter from Jane Williams to Catherine Heathcote, March 17, 1845

documentary heritage
  • Description

    Acknowledging receipt of the newspapers sent by Mrs Heathcote [Kate]. She writes of William being absent on travels to the Bay of Islands, East Cape, [Ahaura/Ahuriri], Opotiki, Wakatane [sic], and Tauranga; and his intention of continuing on to Rotorua (to visit Mr Chambers), Ruatahuna, Wairoa, and Table Cape. She goes on to write of Octavius Hadfield's illness and the possibility of it drawing William away throughout the winter.

    Jane writes of the recent settlers to her neighbourhood, Mr Hamlin and Mr Colenso. She also writes of the young Leonard and Sydney, who had made their way overland to Auckland. She reports on her children, James and Joseph, being only a year away from school. Jane writes of the progress of the Maori community around their mission, commenting that more constant superintendence and instruction was needed. Finally, she implores Kate to write more frequently, commenting that her letters had beguiled some of her lonely moments in her husbands frequent absence.

  • Other Id

    14419 (Presto content ID)

    MS-1991-75-730 (Reference Number)

  • Department

Images and documents


  • Object Type
  • Name/Title
    Letter from Jane Williams to Catherine Heathcote, March 17, 1845
  • Primary Maker
  • Date
  • Physical Description

    8pp on 1 leaf ; 226mm x 370mm Folded to 226mm x 185mm.

  • Language
  • Collection
  • Level of Current Record
  • Is Part Of
  • Public Access Text


    [Keywords: Correspondence, Colonialism, Missionary Women, Missionary Wives, Missionar Families, Mission Work, Loneliness]

  • Subject Notes
    Jane Williams (nee Nelson 1801-1896) was the wife of William Williams, and a force for Missionary work in her own right. Trained as a school teacher, she taught Maori women and girls the art of domestic 'English' life. During her husbands frequent absences, Jane managed the day to day running of their mission. She is remembered as a bright, intelligent, courageous and cheerful soul.
    [Further reading: Faith and Farming: The legacy of Henry Williams and William Williams. pg. 275]
  • Last Update
    07 Dec 2023
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