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Two letters from Jane Williams to Catherine Heathcote, [1844]

documentary heritage
  • Description

    Two letters dated March 1 and March 11, [1844]. Regarding the delay in mail due to the detention of the Columbine at Wanganui. She goes on to write of Williams Missionary work, particularly his relationship with the Catholic missionaries and the troubles with attendance they were having at the school. She writes of the priests inability to engage the children, and their want of a qualified teacher.

    She describes the loss of objects, particularly of three large cases of 'native testaments,' when their house caught fire, and the folly of depositing them in the wooden house because it was thought to be safer than the Raupo one. In an additional note, Jane writes to Catherine about the Seraphine William procured for Jane from Mr Brown at Tauranga. [A Seraphine is an early keyed wind instrument, a cross between a reed organ and an accordion]

  • Other Id

    14416 (Presto content ID)

    MS-1991-75-727 (Reference Number)

  • Department

Images and documents


  • Object Type
  • Name/Title
    Two letters from Jane Williams to Catherine Heathcote, [1844]
  • Primary Maker
  • Date
  • Physical Description

    10pp on 2 leaves ; 247mm x 398mm Folded to 247mm x 398mm ; 134 x 112mm.

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


    [Keywords: Correspondence, Colonialism, Missionary Women, Missionary Wives, Missionary Schools, Papists, Maunsell, Indigenous Buildings, Whare-stnle houses]

  • 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 Jul 2023
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