Story: History of immigration

Busby’s estimate of European population

Busby’s estimate of European population

James Busby, British Resident in the Bay of Islands, prepared this estimate of New Zealand’s European population in February 1836. It might be noted that there were about seven times more adult men than women, and that three-quarters of those in the North Island lived in the Bay of Islands, Hokianga, or further north. Most of those in the South Island lived in the Marlborough Sounds. Busby completed another estimate in 1839 of those north of Thames, which suggested there were 1,100 people. Historians believe there were about 2,000 by that date in the whole country.

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Source: James Busby, ‘Despatches from the British Resident, 1833–1839.’ qMS-0344. Alexander Turnbull Library, Wellington

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How to cite this page:

Jock Phillips, 'History of immigration - A growing settlement: 1825 to 1839', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, http://www.TeAra.govt.nz/en/graph/1558/busbys-estimate-of-european-population (accessed 1 April 2020)

Story by Jock Phillips, published 8 Feb 2005, updated 1 Aug 2015