Saturday, January 7, 2012


The Otago Daily Times reports: The Chinese in Dunedin were closely scanning the map of New Zaaland recently. Some of them had nsver seen it before, and it was only after a search that they spotted Hokianga up near the top of the sheet. They gazed long and eagerly at the sea space. In imagination they probably saw the Ventnor lying on the ocean's bed, with the bones of her five hundred countrymen in her hold; but whether that was the trend oi their thoughts or not they all appear to realise that there is no hope of recovering anything from the vessel, eapecially as its position is undefined. Even if the vessel breaks up the cases would not come to the surface as each of them contains a considerable weight. The occurrence is, of course, regarded as most unfortunate and many of the Chinese, their faces sober at any time now wear countenances on which is very plainly expressed the great depth of their feelings amounting almost to alarm It is the first time anything of the sort has happened to a vessel carrying to the Flowery Land the bones of their fellows. Twenty one years ago the Hoi How sailed from the colony with the first consignment of remains consisting of the bones of about 220 Chinamen, and reached her haven safely. No vessel has come to the colony since that date and it was in tbe Ventnor that the bones, and in a few cases the bodies of the Chinese who have died subsequently to that year were being taken away, like the Hoi How's cargo for reinterment m China. The peace of mind, therefore, of the Chinese residents of Otago, indeed of New Zealand, is considerably disturbed at the present tine, and as a matter of fact it is a subject on which the majority of them will, when questioned say very little. The less intelligent of them it is useless to approach, for at any time they are not communicative and now they will say absolutely nothing. That was the experience of one of our reporters who mixed with a number of them recently. Cape Egmont was also located on the map, and a matter concerning which much surprise was expressed is that the vessel, after striking did not at once make for New Plymouth or return to Wellngton. West Coast Times , Issue 12355, 11 November 1902, Page 4

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