TO THE READER.
THE design of the Canterbury Papers was indicated in the brief advertisement which preceded and announced them. They are intended to supply the public with information as to the principles, objects, plans, and proceedings of the Canterbury Association for Founding a Settlement in New Zealand. For this purpose it has been thought fitting to collect together the various documents published by the Association, and, with their permission, to edit also such other documents of general interest as they have not themselves thought it necessary to make public. To these it is intended to append such extracts from printed books, pamphlets, and papers, bearing directly on the same subjects, as have not appeared in a collective form; and, lastly, to publish such original essays, statements, discussions, and extracts from private letters, papers, and memoranda, as may throw light in any way on the nature of the Settlement, or the means available for its formation and success.
In consequence of this arrangement, the Public will obtain, in a cheap, clear, and compendious form, all the information at present procurable included within the two first numbers of these Papers, which for this purpose are published together. Inasmuch, however, as the Association's proceedings have by this time arrived at that advanced stage which renders frequent information desirable, from time to time, as often as it is forthcoming, additional numbers of these Papers will appear, following each other in serial succession.
The whole can be easily bound in a volume, which will form a chapter of the res gestœ of the great "heroic work" of Colonization. It will also constitute an authentic record of the Canterbury Settlement at its first origin, and be the earliest materials for its future history.
- February, 1850.