Volume 4 1895 > Volume 4, No. 1 > Front matter and Contents, p ii-xii
JOURNAL OF THE POLYNESIAN SOCIETY
CONTAINING THE TRANSACTIONS AND PROCEEDINGS OF THE SOCIETY.
Vol. iv. 1895.
WELLINGTON, N.Z.: PRINTED FOR THE SOCIETY BY WHITCOMBE AND TOMBS LIMITED, LAMBTON QUAY. AGENT FOR AMERICA, REV. S. D. PEET, GOOD-HOPE, ILL. 1895.
OFFICERS for 1895.
Liliuokalani, ex Queen of Hawaii.
The Right Rev. W. L. Williams, B.A.
(Bishop of Waiapu).
Joint Hon. Secretaries, and Treasurers, and Editors of Journal:
Ed. Tregear and S. Percy Smith.,
THE Society is formed to promote the study of the Anthropology, Ethnology, Philology, History and Antiquities of the Polynesian races, by the publication of an official journal, to be called “The Journal of the Polynesian Society:” and by the collection of books, manuscripts, photographs, relies, and other illustrations.
The term “Polynesia” is intended to include Australia, New Zealand Melanesia, Micronesia, and Malaysia, as well as Polynesia proper.
Candidates for admission to the Society shall be admitted on the joint recommendation of a member of the Society and a member of the Council, and on the approval of the Council.
Every person elected to membership shall receive immediate notice of the same from the Secretaries, and shall receive a copy of the rules; and on payment of his subscription of one pound shall be entitled to all the benefits of membership Subscriptions are payable in advance, on the 1st January of each year.
Papers will be received on any of the above subjects if sent through a member. Authors are requested to write only on one side of the paper, to use quarto paper, and to leave one inch margin on the left-hand side, to allow of binding. Proper names should be written in ROMAN TYPE.
The office of the Society is at present Box 188. Post Office, Wellington, New Zealand.
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MEMBERS OF THE POLYNESIAN SOCIETY,
1st January, 1895.
(An * before a name signifies an original member or founder.)
As this list will be published annually, the Secretaries would feel obliged if members would supply any omissions, or notify change of residence.
ANNUAL MEETING OF THE SOCIETY.
THE Annual Meeting of the Society, in pursuance of Rule No. 13, was called for the 28th January, but was postponed until the 21st February, when several gentlemen met in the Lecture Room of the Museum, Wellington. Sir W. L. Buller, F.R.S., in the chair.
The Annual Report of the Council, and the Accounts for the year ending the 31st December, 1894, were read, passed, and ordered to be printed; they will be found below.
The Right Reverend W. L. Williams, B.A., Bishop of Waiapu, was elected President for the coming year, and the Rev. W. J. Habens, B.A., Ed. Tregear and S. Percy Smith were re-elected members of Council—they having retired in accordance with Rule No. 5.
Mr. Ed. Tregear was re-elected one of the Honorary Secretaries and Treasurers, and Mr. Alex. Barron re-elected Auditor for the year, 1895; the latter gentleman receiving a vote of thanks for his past services.
It was moved, seconded and carried, that Rule No. 16 be amended by the substitution of the word “seven” in lieu of “fifteen,” in the second line of the Rule. This has the effect of reducing the quorum of members necessary to constitute a meeting of the Society.
The following Corresponding Members were then elected:—F. W. Christian, (at present at the Marquesas); Hare Hongi, of Hawera, N.Z.; Wiremu Kauika, of Waitotara, N.Z.
After some discussion, it was decided that the Council should call Meetings of the Society, to read and discuss papers, from time to time. This was part of the original programme of the Society, but hitherto has not been carried out.
Votes of thanks to the Chairman and the Honorary Secretaries concluded the meeting.
ANNUAL REPORT OF THE COUNCIL OF THE POLYNESIAN SOCIETY, FOR 1894.
The Council has pleasure in presenting to the Annual Meeting of the Society its third Report on the work and transactions of the year ended the 31st December, 1894.
During the period, our membership has continued to increase by the election of new members, whilst at the same time our losses by death, by resignation, and by striking off the list those who were in arrear with their subscriptions for two years, have been considerable. Since the Society was first started, there have been - ix elected 206 members, of whom 4 have died, 6 have ceased to be members through non-payment of their subscriptions, and 9 have resigned; so that on the 31st of December last our numbers were:—
The causes assigned by those gentlemen who have resigned are such as have affected Australasia generally during the past period, and which are to be expected in the life of any Society, they are namely:—depression, or removal to other places. Amongst the deaths of the past year are:—Robert Louis Stevenson, the celebrated author; Hone Mohi Tawhai, the well-known chief of the Ngapuhi tribe of Maoris; and, Mr. A. J. Cartwright, of Honolulu. In addition to these, we have lost, Hoani Nahe, one of our corresponding members, who took a great interest in our work, and who has already contributed a considerable amount of matter to our Transactions, most of which remains yet to be translated. Taking the general depression into consideration, it is a matter for congratulation that there is a slight increase in our membership instead of a decrease, which might have been expectd.
During the past year we have unfortunately been deprived of the assistance and countenance of our President, whose ill-health obliged him again to seek medical advice in England, where he now is. The Patron of the Society is—as members are aware—Liliuokalani, ex-Queen of Hawaii. That lady has ceased to be Queen of the Sandwich Islands, but remains our Patron, until the Society sees fit to elect someone in her place. The Council deemed it wise, however, in retaining her name, as an officer of the Society, to give her title as ex-Queen, instead of Queen, as the retention of the latter had called forth some remarks, showing that it was displeasing to some of our members.
The Council held six meetings during the year: for the election of members, receipt of Papers, and other business connected with the affairs of the Society. The supply of original Papers on matters connected with the objects of the Society continues to suffice to fill the pages of the Journal, indeed, there is more material on hand than can be published without increasing the size of the Journal, and many of these papers are of considerable interest and value, but most of them require translating. The first year of the Society's existence we received 38 Papers, the second year also 38, and last year 33; so it will be seen, therefore, that the supply continues about the same each year. In most Societies the supply of matter is deficient, happily with the Polynesian Society it is different. There can be little doubt that the Society has been the means of bringing to light information regarding the Polynesian Race, which would otherwise have been lost to the world. We are gathering together facts, which may yet be worked up into a whole, and at the same time encouraging writers of the native race to illustrate subjects that none but themselves can accomplish so well. Another of the objects for which the Society was started, as stated in the original circular, is being accomplished; it is making known to one another, students in the same field of enquiry, who otherwise, possibly, would never have known of one another's existence.
The Journal has appeared regularly at the end of each quarter, the four numbers together forming the third volume of the Society's transactions and pro- - x ceedings. It contains 246 pages, besides illustrations. Of each number, 350 copies have been struck off, which after suppling the members, exchanges, and public libraries, &c, leaves a considerable number in hand for future members. It is found that the smaller editions struck off of volumes I. and II. was a mistake, back numbers of those two volumes are not procurable, and those, therefore, in the hands of members have already become of considerably greater value than when issued. It may be necessary to reprint these early numbers hereafter. The Council has authorised the printing of extra copies of Mr. Shand's Moriori Papers, with the view of having them bound on completion, and towards the expenses of which several members have subscribed. The importance of these Papers themselves warrants this course, for they contain absolutely the only reliable information in the world, as to this nearly extinct people.
The number of Societies, public libraries, and exchanges, to which the Journal is sent is 56. In return, a large number of publications, mostly bearing on anthropological subjects, is received, so that in the course of a few years the Society will possess a valuable library, dealing with subjects cognate to those treated of in our transactions. The time is not far distant when arrangements will have to be made for their proper housing, cataloguing, &c.
Members will be glad to learn that the finances are in a healthy state. Inspection of the attached accounts will show that with the balance of £64 12s. 7d. brought forward from last year, we have received a total sum of £267 4s. 1d., and after defraying expenses there is a balance in hand of £85 7s. 1d., against which there is a liability of £44. During the year another member has taken advantage of Rule No. 24 and become a life member; his commutation fee having been paid to Capital Account, as per rule quoted, thus making that account stand—with interest received—at £37 4s.
Judging from what we hear from outside sources, the Council are justified in concluding that the formation of the Society is warranted, and meets a real want felt by many, who having valuable information to impart, feel the difficulty of publishing a book. We feel assured that within a few years the numbers of the Journal now in the hands of members will have attained a value far exceeding their subscriptions. Rough and unpolished as many of our papers are, they contain matter not to be found in any other publication. We should look on the papers as the rough unhewn foundation on which others will build noble edifices. Although, it is true, the Society started 50 years too late, and thereby lost invaluable information, yet, there are advantages we enjoy at the present day, which would have been impossible formerly. This is due to the fact that there are very many intelligent natives all over Polynesia, who having a love for their old history, have, through modern education, overcome the prejudices of their forefathers against disclosing their store of knowledge, and it is these men who can obtain from the older generation what we white folks never could. These men, many of them past middle age, have learnt that our history is open to all, and that no harm follows its disclosure, they are thus incited to preserve the knowledge gathered by their own race.
ED. TREGEAR, Honorary Secretaries.
S. PERCY SMITH, Honorary Secretaries.