Secondary Schools in the New Zealand Social Order, 1840-1903
The New Zealand pioneer, like the North American frontiersman, has become to many New Zealanders a romanticized symbol rather than a real person struggling to adapt to a strange and often frightening environment. 'As ye sow so shall ye reap' was for the pioneer farmer an injunction to be taken literally. After exhausting his resources in buying his small-holding the pioneer farmer 'would start on foot and alone...with a heavy swag of tools etc, on his back, to which, on passing the last older settler, would be added the additional burden of a kit of seed potatoes and some rations. With these he would camp down on his future lowly home and would work hard, for long hours on very scanty fare...to hurry in a patch of potatoes, and to make a pig-proof fence round it. He would then beat a retreat to the more settled districts, where he would seek employment until his little crop of potatoes was grown when he would return with a heavier load of rations...and this time he would be able to put in a larger crop and to build a whare, so that the next season he might have the joy of conveying his family to the scene of their future expectations. But it was hand work, and there were many privations to undergo for the first few years....'