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Correspondence respecting the non-admission of fish and fish oils, the produce of British Columbia, into… Great Britain. Colonial Office 1876

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Array NORTH AMERICA.    No. 5 (1876).
 CORRESPONDENCE
RESPECTING THE
.NON-ADMISSION OF FISH AND FISH OILS
THE  PRODUCE  OF
BRITISH   COLUMBIA.
INTO
THE   UNITED   STATES
FREE   OF   DUTY,.UNDER THE TREATY OF WASHINGTON, MAY 8, 1871.
Presented to both Houses of Parliament by Command of Her Majesty.
1876. 
LONDON:
PRINTED BY HARRISON AND SONS* 
TABLE   OF   CONTENTS.
No.
Name.
Date.
Subject.
Page
1
Sir E. Thornton. 
Apr. 12, 1875
Sends copy of Lord Dufferin's despatch, relative to
refusal of "United  States' Government to admit
fish from British Columbia free of duty.    Awaits
instructions .             ..             ..         ..
1
2
Colonial Office ..
27,
Sends copy of Lord Dufferin's despatch.    Proposes
to wait far Sir E. Thornton's observations
O
To Colonial Office (
May    6,
Sends copy of No.   1.     Requests explanation of
delay in bringing the matter to the notice of Her
Majesty's Government         ..
4
4
Colonial Office ..            ,.
It
Sends copy of further despatch from Lord Dufferin,
inclosing Sir E. Thornton's reply to his despatch.
4
5
»         »     • •             ..
13,
Inquiries will be made as to the delay.    Very desir- j
able to have British Columbia included in the
Treaty  ..             ..            ..            ..            ..
5
6
Sir E. Thornton .
10,
Sends copy of further despatch from Lord Dufferin.
Is not aware that the incorporation of British
Columbia in the Dominion of Canada was ever
made known to United States' Government
5
7
To Colonial Office            ..
26,
Sends copy of No. 6..               .              ..             ..
7
S
Colonial Office .»
28,
Sends copy of further despatch from Lord Dufferin.
Suggests that a representation should be made to
the United States' Government without delay    ..
7
9
To Colonial Office
June   4,
Papers referred to Law Officers              ..
9
10
Colonial Office ..             ..
Aug.   5,
Sends copy of a  despatch   explaining the delay
referred to in No. 3
9
11
To Sir £. Thornton
11?
Cannot instruct him to ask the United States'
Government as desired        ..            ..            ..
10
12
To Colonial Office
11,
Sends copy of No. 11.            ..            ..
11
13
To Sir E. Thornton
H,
Sends copy of No. 10               ..            ..
11
14
Colonial Office ..
19,
Sends copy of despatch to Sir W. Haly, communicating the decision of Her" Majesty's Govern
ment     ..            ..
11 Correspondence respecting the Non-admission of Fish and Fish
Oils, the produce of British Columbia, into the United
States, Free of Duty, under the Treaty of Washington of
May 8, 1871.
No. 1.
Sir E. Thoxmion to the Earl of Derby.—{Received April 26.)
My Lord, Washington, April 12, 1875.
I HAVE the honour to inclose copy of a despatch which I have received from the
Governor-General of Canada, and of its inelosures, relating to the refusal of the United
States'Customs authorities to allow the importation free of duty of fish and fish oil
from British Columbia, in accordance with the provisions of Article XXI of the Treaty
of May 8, 1871.
His Excellency requests me to take such action in the matter as I may think
proper; but as British Columbia did not form a part of the Dominion of Canada when
the above-mentioned Treaty was signed, I hesitate to make any representation to the
Government of the United States upon the subject until I shall receive your Lordship's
instructions to do so.
It is, however, true that the United States' Act of Congress of March 1, 1873,
when Brrtish Columbia certainly did form a part of the Dominion of Canada, enacts that
nsh oil and fish, being the produce of the fisheries of the Dominion of Canada, and of
l^ince Edward Island, shall be admitted into the United States free of duty.
have &c.
(Signed)      i   ED WD. THORNTON.
Inclosure 1 in No. 1.
The Earl of Dufferin io Sir E. Thornton.
Hir, Government House, Ottawa, April 8, 187£.
I HAVE the honour of iaefosing, for such action as you may think proper, a copy
of an approved report of a Comieittee of the Pmy Council respecting the denial on the
part of the United States' authorities of the right of the Province of British Columbia
to participate in those provisions of the Treaty of Washington under which fish and fish
oil. or the produce of Canadian fisheries, are entitled to admission into the United States
free of duty.
I have forwarded a copy of the Minute of Council for the information of the
Secretary of State for the Colonies.
I have, &c.
(Signed) DUFFERIN.
[48S] B 2 I
2
Inclosnre 2 in No. 1*
Report of a Committee of the Honourable the Privy Council, approved by His Excellency
the Governor-General, on the 1st day of April, 1875.
ON a Report dated 31st March, 1875, from the Honourable the Minister of
Customs, representing that he has been given to understand that the United States*
Customs Officers at San Francisco and other ports deny the right of the Province of
British Columbia to participate in the terms of the Washington Treaty, which provide
for the admission free of duty of fish and fish oil, &c, the product of the Canadian
Fisheries, and demand and collect duties upon the same as if the said Treaty had not
been made, and further representing that the interpretation given to the law of this
Dominion, which was enacted to give effect to the said Washington Treaty, is, and
always has been, that fish and fish oils, &c, as therein provided, are equally entitled to
free entry in British Columbia, as in all other Provinces of the Dominion, and he submits
a copy of the opinion of the Honourable the Minister of Justice on the subject, dated
5th February, 1874. He therefore requests that the case be brought under the notice of
Her Majesty's Ambassador to the United States at Washington, with a view to the
adoption of proper measures for the removal of the illegal restrictions imposed on the
imports of such articles from British Columbia into the United States.
The Committee concur in the above Report, and advise that a copy of this Minute
and of the report of the Minister of Justice therein referred to, be transmitted to Sir
Edward Thornton.
Certified,
(Signed) W. A. HIMSWORTH,
Clerk, Privy Council, Canada*
Inclosure 3 in No. 1.
Report by the Minister of Justice of Canada.
Department of Justice, February 5, 1874.
REFERENCE is made by the Department of Marine and Fisheries as to whether
;fish oils from the Province of British Columbia are admissible into United States' markets
rduty free under the Treaty of Washington.
By Article XXI of the Treaty of Washington, fish and fish oil, the produce of the
tUnited States' fisheries or of the Dominion of Canada, shall be admitted into each
country free of duty.
By Article XXXIII, Article XXI, &c, shall take effect as soon as the laws required
to carry them into operation shall have been passed by the Imperial and Canadian
Parliaments on the one hand, and the United States' Congress on the other.
The Treaty itself bears date the 8th May, 1871, and is, as to these clauses, in effect
a proposition of the Commissioners for free exchange of the commodities named, should
each country see fit to pass laws covering the suggestion.
The Teal agreement and its terms are to be looked for in the Legislative action of
the two countries, and these consist of—
1st. Statutes, Canada, 1873, chapter 2, passed 14th June, 1872; section 2 of which
provides for the admission into Canada, free of duty, of fish and fish oils, the produce of
the fisheries of the United States.
At the time of the passing of this Act, the Province of British Columbia was a part
of Canada, having been admitted 20th July, 1871; was represented in Parliament; and,
therefore, there being no restriction in the Act, Canada was bound by it to admit into
the ports of British Columbia United States' fish and fish oils.
2nd. Act of Congress, United States; approved 1st March, 1873. It is enacted
that whenever the President of the United States shall receive satisfactory evidence that
the Parliament of Canada has passed laws on its part to give full effect to Article XXI of
the Treaty, " the President is to issue his Proclamation to that effect, and thereafter all
fish oil and fish, the produce of Canada, shall be admitted into United States free of
duty."
The President's Proclamation, as above required, was published July 1, 1873.
There being no restriction in the Act of Congress, it must be taken as applying to
what at the time constituted Canada; and as British Columbia then formed a part of Canada, the production of its fisheries in fish and fish oil are* entitled to admission into
United States free of duty.
(Signed) H. BERNARD,
Deputy Minister of Justice*
I concur,
(Signed) A. A. DORION,
Minister of Justice.
No.2. .    ,'   : ' " "'"j^flf?
3tft^ Herbert to Lord Tenter den.—(Received April 28.)
Sir, Downing Street, April 27, 1875.
WITH reference to Mr. Bourke's reply to a question asked by Sir A. Monck in the
House of Commons on the 9th instant, I am directed by the Earl of Carnarvon to
transmit to you, to be laid before the Earl of Derby, a copy of a despalch from the
Governor-General of Canada, inclosing a Report of a Committee of the Privy Council
respecting the denial on the part of the United States' authorities of the right of the
Province of British Columbia to participate in those provisions of the Treaty of
Washington under which fish and fish oil, &c, the produce of Canadian fisheries, are
entitled to admission into the United States free of duty.
Lord Derby may probably think it desirable to take the opinion of the Law Officers
of the Crown in regard to this matter, but before doing so. Lord Carnarvon thinks it
may be well to await any observations which Sir. E. Thornton may have to offer on the,
subject.
I am, &c.
(Signed) ROBERT G. W. HERBERT.
Inclosure 1 in No. 2.
The Earl of Dufferin to the Earl of Carnarvon.
My Lord, Government House, Ottawa, April 8, 1875.
I HAVE the   honour to forward, for your Lordship's information, a copy of a
report of a Committee of my Privy Council, approved by myself, respecting the denial
on the part of the United States' authorities of the right of the Province  of British-
Columbia to participate in those provisions of the Treaty of Washington, under whicby
fish and fish oil, &c, the product of Canadian fisheries, are entitled to admission into
the United States free of duty..
In accordance with the request of the Privy Council I have transmitted a copy of
this report to Sir E. Thornton, Her Majesty's Minister at Washington.
I have, &c.
(Signed) DUFFERIN.
Inclosure 2 in No. 2.
Report jof a Committee of the Honourable the Privy Council, approved by his Excellency the
Governor-General in Council, on the 1st day of April, 1875.
[See Inclosure 2 in No. 1.]
Inclosure 3 in No. 2.
Report by Minister of Justice of Canada, dated February 5, 1874.
[See Inclosure 3 in No. 1.]
^..■KT-n*.:msrr-T^i?&-j*rrr 4
''    • " "*'; '  No. 3.   " •■■.   • -    ■   :
Lord Tenterden to Mr. Herbert.
Sir Foreign Office, May 6, 1875.
WITH reference to your letter of the 27th ultimo, forwarding a copy of a despatch
from the Governor-General of Canada and a report of the Committee of the Privy
Council of the Dominion, respecting the denial on the part of the United States'
authorities of the right of the Province of British Columbia to participate in those
provisions of the Treaty of Washington, under which fish and fish oil, &c, the produce
of Canadian fisheries, are entitled to admission into the United States free of duty, I
am directed by Lord Derby to transmit to you, to be laid before Lord Carnarvon, a copy
of a despatch from Sir E. Thornton on the subject ;* and I am to request you to point
out to his Lordship that the United States' Act, giving effect to the provisions of the
Treaty, was passed on the 1st of March, .1873, and that the report of the Canadian
Department of Justice on the exclusion of the produce of the Columbian fisheries is
dated the 5th of February, 1874, while the report of the Committee of the Privy
Council of the Dominion was not made until the 1st ultimo.
Lord Derby is of opinion that before taking any steps in this matter it would be
desirable to have some explanation of the delay which has occurred in bringing it to the
notice of Her Majesty's Government.
I am, &c.
(Signedj
TENTERDEN.
No. 4.
Mr. Malcolm to Lord Tentwden.—(Received May 7.)
Sir, Downing Street, May 7, 1875.
WITH reference to my letter of the 27th of April, inclosing a copy of a despatch
from the Governor-General of Canada, respecting a question ag to the right of the
Province of British Columbia to participate in those provisions of the Treaty of
Washington, under which fish and fish oil, the produce of the Canadian fisheries, are
entitled to admission into the United States free of duty, I am directed by the Earl of
Carnarvon to transmit to you, to be laid before the Earl of Derby, a copy of a further
despatch from Lord Dufferin, inclosing the reply of Sir Edward Thornton to the com-
naamication addressed to him on the subject by the Governor-General of the Dominion.
I am, &c.
(Signed) W. R. MALCOLM.
Inclosure 1 in No. 4.
The Earl of Dufferin to the Earl of Carnarvon.
My Lord, Government House, Ottawa, April 19, 1875.
IN my despatch of the 8th instant I had the honour of transmitting to your Lordship a copy of an Order of the Privy Council relative to the refusal of the United States
Authorities to admit fish and fish-oil from British Columbia duty free, in accordance with
Article XXI of the Treaty of Washington.
I had also the honour of informing you that, by the wish of my Government, I
had communicated a copy of the report of Council to Her Majesty's Minister at
Washington.
$■     I now beg to inclose for your Lordship's information, a copy of the reply which I
have received from Sir Edward Thornton upon the subject.
I have, &c.
(Signed) DUFFERIN.
* No. 1. Inclosuwe^ia No. 4.
Sir E. Thornton to the Earl of Dufferin, ' *v*
My Lord, " Washington, April 12, 1875.
I HAVE the honour to acknowledge the receipt of your Excellency's despatch of
the 8th instant, relative to the refusal o^fche United States' Authorities to admit fish and
fish-oil from British Columbia duty free, in accordance with Article XXI of the Treaty of
May 8th, 1871.
As British Columbia was not, at the time of the signing of that Treaty, a part of
the Dominion of Canada, I do not feel justified in making a representation upon the
subject to the United States' Government without instructions to that effect from the
Earl of Derby. Jjt would, however, appear that, although British Columbia may not be
entitled to that privilege by the provisions of the Treaty, ifcais so with reference to the
Act of Congress of March 1st, 1873.
i have &c
(Signed) ED WD. THORNTON.
No. |f.-
Mr. Malcolm to Lord Tentmden.—(Received May 14.)
Sir, ' Downing Street, May 13, 1875.
IN reply to your letter of the 6th instant, respecting t||e denial on the part of the
United States' Authorities of the right of&he Province of British Columbia to participate
in those provisions of the Treaity of Washington under which fish and fish-oil, &c, the
produce of the Canadian fisheries, are entitled to admission into the United States free
of duty, I am directed by the Earl of Carnarvon to acquaint you, for the information of
the Earl of Derby, that his Lordship has addressed an inquiry to the officer administering
the Government of Canada, as to the delay in bringing forward this question in compliance with his Lordship's suggestion.
I am desired, however, to state that, notwithstanding any delay which may have
taken place in bringing the matter forwa^ $t would seem very desirable to have British
Columbian produce included vathin the provisions of the Treaty, if this can be
effected.
I am, &c.
spgned) W. R. MALCOLM.
No. 6.
Sir E. Thornton to the Earl of Derby*—(Received May 23.)
My L$rd, Washington, May 10, 1875.
WITH reference to my despatch of the 12th ultimo, I have the honour to inclose
copies of a further despatch, and of its inclosure which I have received from the
Governor-General of Canada, relative to the refusal by the United States' Customs
Authorities to admit fish and fifm-oil free of duty into the United States from British
Columbia, as the Canadian Government thinks that they ought to do, ij| accordance with
the Artiete XXI of the Treaty of Washington.
The iBclosure in Lord Dufferin's despatch which is a report of a Committee of the
Privy Council of Canada of the 30th ultimo, contains a very clear statement of the case,
but it seems to me that the question simply resolves itself into whether the United
States' Government must be guided by the Treaty when British Colnmbia did not form a
part of the Dominion of Canada, or by the Act of ^pongress of March 1, 1873 (b'tfe
revised Stat#es, section 2,506) when it did form a part of the Dominion.
I am obliged, however, to acknowledge that I received no official announcement
before the date of^s Act, from the Governor-General of Canada, and ma€e none to the
Government of the Uri&ed States, that British Columbia had been incorporated into the
Dominion of Canada, nor am I aware^that the fact has ever been officially communicated
by Her Majesty's government or by any British Authority to the United States' Government. As I have already asked for your Lordship's instructions upon this matter in my
despatch above mentioned, I do not con ider that it will be expedient to make any
representations to Mr. Fish, until I shall receive them.
I have, &c.
(Signed) EDWD. THORNTON.
Inclosure 1 in No. 6.
The Earl of Dufferin to Sir E. Thornton.
Sir, Government House, Ottawa, May 3, 1875.
I HAVE the honour of communicating to you, for your information, a copy of a
further order of the Privy Council of Canada, relative to the refusal of the United States'
authorities to admit fish and fish oil from British Columbia duty free, in accordance with
Article XXI. of the Treaty of Washington.
I have, &c.
(Signed) DUFFERIN.
Inclosure 2 in No. 6.
Report of a C&mmhtee of the Honourable the Privy Council, approved by His Excellency
the Governor-General, on the 30M day of April, 1875.
THE Committee of Council have had under consideration the despatch of Her
Majesty's Minister at Washington, dated 12th April, 1875, to your Excellency, in answer
to a despatch inclosing the Minute of Council of the 1st April, 1875, relative to the
refusal of the United States' authorities to admit fish and fish oil from British Columbia
duty free, in accordance with Article XXI of the Treaty of Washington.
In his despatch Sir E. Thornton declines to make any representations on the subject
to the United States'Government without instructions to that effect from the Earl of
Derby, alleging that he would not be justified in doing so, as British Columbia was not,
at the time of the signing of that Treaty, a part of Canada.
The Treaty bears date the 8th May, 1871, and Article XXXIII recites that Articles
from XVIII to XXV inclusive, and Article XXX. shall take effect " as soon as the laws
required to carry them into operation shall have been passed by the Imperial Parliament
of Great Britain, by the Parliament of Canada, and the Legislature of Prince Edward
Island on the one hand, and by the Congress of the United States on the other."
British Columbia became part of the Dominion of Canada on the 20th July, 1871,
-and the Act of the Parliament of Canada giving effect to the Washington Treaty as
as respects Canada, was passed on the 14th June, 1872, British Columbia being then a
part of the Dominion of Canada, and represented in Parliament.
The second section of that Act provided that " fish oil and fish of all kinds (except
fish of the inland lakes, and of the rivers falling into them, and except fish preserved in
oil) being the produce of the fisheries of the United States shall be admitted into Canada
free of duty."
It is clear that under this provision fish, the produce of the United States'
fisheries, would be admitted free into British Columbia as forming part of Canada.
By section 2,506 of the Act of Congress, entitled " duties upon imports passed on the
1st of March, 1873," it is provided that,
" Whenever the Resident of the United States shall receive satisfactory evidence that
the Imperial Parliament of Great Britain, the Parliament of Canada, and the Legislature
of Prince Edward Island have passed laws on their part to give full effect to the'
provisions of the Treaty between the United States and Great Britain, signed at the
(Sty of Washington on the 8th day of May, 1871, as contained in Articles XVIII to
XXV inclusive, and Article XXX of the said Treaty, he is hereby: authorized to issue
his proclamation declaring that he has such evidence, and therefore from the date of such
proclamation, and so long as the said Articles XVIII to XXV inclusive, and Article XXX
of the said Treaty shall remain in force, according to the terms and conditions of Article
XXXIII of the said Treaty, all fish oil and fish of all kinds (except fish of the inland
lakes and of the rivers falling into them, and except fish preserved in oil) being the
produce of the fisheries of the Dominion of Canada, or of Prince Edward Island, shall be
admitted into the United States free of duty."
The Presidents Proclamation, issued on the 1st July, 1873, nearly two years after British Columbia had become a part of the Dominion of Canada. From the language of
the section above quoted it is clear that fish and fish-oil, the produce of the Dominion of
Canada as then constituted, were to be admitted into the United States free of duty. In
the opinion of the Committee it is susceptible of no other construction ; and they do not
hesitate to express the belief that when the subject shall be brought under the notice of
the United States' Goverment that opinion will be concurred in.
The point under consideration was referred in February, 1874, to the Honourable
A. A. Dorion, the present Chief Justice of Quebec, and then Minister of Justice, and his
opinion was in accordance with that expressed in this Minute.
As an element in the consideration of this subject, it is worthy of note that the
XXVIth Article of the Treaty providing for the free navigation of the River St. Lawrence
also makes provision for the free navigation of one of the rivers of British Columbia, the
Stikine, which flows through the territory of both countries. This evidence, taken in
conjunction with the fact that provision is also made in the Treaty for Prince Edward
Island and Newfoundland, the only other portions of British territory on the Continent,
it may fairly be assumed that, apart from the effect of subsequent legislation, it was the
intention of the framers of the Treaty to make it applicable to all parts of British
America and the United States.
The Committee advise that a copy of this Minute, the Minute of the 1st of April,
1875, and the correspondence with Her Majesty's Minister at Washington, together with
the opinion of the Honourable A. A. Dorion, be transmitted by your Excellency to the
Imperial Government, with the request that the United States' Government be moved to
consider the subject herein referred to, with a view to the removal of the grounds of
complaint.
Certified,
(Signed) W. A. HIMSWORTH,
Clerk, Privy Council, Canada.
Inclosure 3 in No. 6.
Report of a Committee of the Honourable the Privy Council, approved by His Excellency the
Governor-General in Council, on the 1st April. 1875.
[See Inclosure 2 in No. 1.] j*#| ..m
Inclosure 4 in No. 6.
Report by the Minister of Justice of Canada, dated February 5, 1874.
[See Inclosure 3 in No. 1.]
No. 7.
Mr. Lister to Mr. Malcolm.
Sir, Foreign Office, May 26, 1875.
WITH reference to your letter of the 13th instant I am directed by the Earl of
Derby to transmit to you, to be laid before the Earl of Carnarvon, a copy of a despatch
from Her Majesty's Minister at Washington,* in regard to the admission of fish and fish-
oil, free of duty, into the United States from British Columbia.
I am, &c.
(Signed) T. V. LISTER.
So. 8.
Mr. Herbert to Lord Tenter den.— [Received May 29.)
Sir, Downing Street, May 28, 1875.
WITH reference to my letters of the 27th of April, and 7th and 13th instant, and
to yours of the 6th of this month, respecting the denial On the part of the United
States' authorities of the right of the Province of British Columbia to participate in
* No. 6.
[485] 0 8
$ho*se "provisions of the Treaty of Washington under which fish and 'fish-oil,' the proSuee
of the Canadian nsheries. are entitled to admission into the I nited Sftstffes free of duty,
1 am directed by the Earl of Carnarvon to transmit to you, to be laid before the Earl
'Df Dterby, a copy of a despatch from the Governor-General of the Dominion, wefngmjr
a further Report of a Committee ot the Privy Council, urging that representations be
made to the United States' Government, with a view to the Temoval of the grounds of
Complaint.
The question is one Vnich requires, it is clear, careful consideration, butnnless the
Earl of Derby is advised that the contention of the Canadian Government is one to
■which it is impossible for the Imperial Government to be a party, Lord Carnarvon would
suggest, for Lord Derby's consideration, whether ^ir'li. Thornton might not be instructed
to make a communication, in the terms of the Report of the Privy Council of Canada,
or^ie consideration of the United States Government.
In the event of Lord Derby being of opinion that this course may properly be
taken, Lord Carnarvon thinks that it might be advisable that the representation should
be made to the United States Government at once, and without waiting for the reply
from the Canadian Government as to the delay whicn appears to have occurred m Canada
in bringing the question forward.
His Lordship would be glad to be informed at Lord Derhfs nearly convenience of the
course which he would propose to take in the matter.
I am, &c.
(Signed]
ROBERT G. W. HERBERT.
IncmSttre 1 in !No. 8.
The Earl of Dufferin to the Earl of Carnarvon.
My Lord, Government House, Ottawa, May 1, 1875.
WITH reference to my despatches of the 8tTi and 19th of April, on the subject
of the refusal by the United States' authorities to admit fish ^and fish^oil from British
Columbia dutyfree, in accordance with the Treaty of Washington, I have the honour
to transmit herewith a copy of a further Report of Council, of which my Government
urge that representations be made to the United States Government, with a view to the
removal of the grounds of complaint.
I have, &c.
(Signed) DUFFERIN.
Inclosure 2 in No. 8.
eport of a Committee of the Honourable the Privy Council, approved "byliis Excellency the
Governor-General in CouncM, on the 30th day of April, 1875.
TSee Inclosure 2 in No. 6.]
Inclosure 3 in No. 8.
Report by Minister of Justice, dated February &t, 1874.
[See Inclosure S in No. 1.]
Inclosure 4 in No. 8.
Report of a Committee of the Honourable the Privy Council, approved by his Excellency the
Governor-General in CouncU, on the 1st April, 1875.
TSee Inclosure 2 in 3So. 1.] 9
Inclosure 5 in No. 8.
Sir E. Thornton to the Earl of Dufferin, April 12, 1875.
FSee Inclosure 2 in No. 2.J
No. 9.
Mr. Lister to Mr. Herbert.
Sir, Foreign Office, Jum 4, 1875.
I HAVE laid before the Earl of Derby your letter of the 23rd ultimo, forwarding a
further communication from the Canadian Government respecting the refusal of the
United States' Customs authorities to admit free of duty fish and fish-oil the produce of
British Columbia, and suggesting that tSir E. Thornton should at once be instructed to
make a ren^s^fttation on the subject to the United States' Government, and I am
directed by his Lordship to state to you in reply, for the information of the Earl of
Carnarvon, that he has thought it desirable, before taking any other steps in the matter,
to refer the papers to the Law Officers for their opinion.
I am, &c.
(Signed) T. V. LISTER.
No. 10.
Mff. Meade to Lord Tenterden.-—(Received August 5.)
Sir, Downing Street, August 5, 1875.
WITH reference to your letter of the 6th of May, to the reply from this office of
the 13th of that month, and to subsequent correspondence respecting the denial of the
United States' authorities of the right of the Province of British Columbia to participate
in those provisions of the Treaty of Washington, under which fish and fish oil, &c, the
produce of the Canadian Fisheries, are entitled to admission into the United States free
of duty, I am directed by the Earl of Carnarvon to transmit to you for the information of
the Earl of Derby, a copy of a despatch from the Administrator of the Government of
Canada, with its inclosure, in explanation of the delay which occurred in bringing this
question to the notice of Her Majesty's Government.
I am, &e.
(Signed) R. H. MEADE.
Inclosure 2 in No. 10.
Report of a Committee of the Honourable the Privy Council, approved by His Excellency the
Administrator of the Government, on the 25th day of June, 1875.
THE Committee of Council have had under consideration the despatch of the Right
Honourable  the Earl of Carnarvon of 13th May last,  covering copy of Sir  Edward
[485] C 2
Inclosure 1 in No. 10.
Lieutenant-General Holy to the Earl of Qofrnavyon,
My Lord, Halifax, United States, July 5, 187$.
WITH reference to your Lordship's despatch May 10th, relative to the exclusion of
British Columbia by the United States Customs authorities from the benefit of importing
fish and fish oil free of duty into the United States, under Article XXI of the Treaty of May
8th, 1871, in which your Lordship asked for some explanation of the delay, which was
noticeable between the action complained of on the part of the United Siates, and the
Report upon this action of the Canadian Department of Justice and of my Privy Council,
I have now the honour to inclose, for your Lordship's information a minute of Council
upon the question.
I have, &c.
(Signed) W. O'G. HALT. 10
Thornton's despatch of 12th April, addressed to the Right Honourable the Earl of Derby,
relating to the refusal of the United States' Customs authorities to allow the importation,
free of duty, of fish and fish oil from British Columbia, in accordance with the provisions
of Article XXI of the Treaty of May 8th, 1871, also inclosing a copy of a despatch from
the Foreign Office to the Colonial Office, dated 6th May, 1875, calling attention to the fact
that, while the Act giving effect to the provisions of the Treaty was passed on the 1st
March, 1873, and the Report of the Canadian Department of Justice on the subject is
dated 5th February, 1874, the Report of the Committee of the Privy Council of the
Dominion was not made until the 1st April, of which delay in taking action in the
matter Lord Derby considers it desirable to have some explanation before bringing it to
the notice of Her Majesty's Government.
The Honourable Mr. Scott, acting for the Minister of Customs, to whom the despatch
with inclosures has been referred, reports that he is not aware of any special cause for the
delav in question, but believes it to have arisen from the fact that the original complaint
upon which the question arose was not succeeded by other complaints, and the matter
was overlooked in the great press of other public business, but as the main point required
is to obtain a clear and authoritative decision as to the right of British Columbia to
participate in the provisions of the Treaty of Washington in the free admission into the
United States of fish and fish-oil the produce of that Province, he recommends that this
explanation be forwarded to the Earl of Carnarvon for transmission to the Foreign
Office, with the desire that proper steps may be taken to establish the said rights of
British Columbia.
The Committee concur in the above recommendation, and submit the same for your
Excellency's approval.
Certified,
(Signed) W. A. HIMSWORTH,
Clerk, Privy Council, Canada.
No. 11.
The Earl of Derby to Sir E. Thornton.
Sir, Foreign Office, August 11, 1875.
I REFERRED to the Law Officers of the Crown your despatch of the 12th of
April, together with other papers on the same subject, respecting the refusal of the
United States' Customs authorities to allow the importation free of duty of fish and
fish-oil from British Columbia in accordance with the provisions Of Article XXI of the
Treaty of Washington of May 8, 1871. and I am advised that the words "Dominion of
Canada," in the XXI st Article of the Treaty in question must be governed by the state
of things existing in May, 1871, and cannot now receive a wider construction from the
fact that additional territory has since been added to the Dominion. The contention of
the Canadian Privv Council, founded upon the XXVIth Article of the Treaty of
Washington, cannot be allowed, and no inference applicable in any way to the present
case can be drawn from the provision that the navigation of certain specified rivers is
to be free, but some confirmation of the view taken by the United States' Customs-
house is given by Articles XVIII and XIX of the Treaty, which apply only to fisheries
on the Eastern or Atlantic side of the Continent. Article XXIII provides the means
by which the several articles named are to be carried into operation, but does not
provide for extending the meaning or operation of those articles, and 1 am of opinion
that the Act of Congress of the 1st of March, 1873, and the Act of the Parliament of
Canada of the 14th June, 1872, must both be construed with reference to the
""Dominion of Canada," as that Dominion was on the 8th of May, 1871, and under
these circumstances I cannot instruct you to bring the matter to the notice of the United
States' Government.
I am, &c.
(Signed) DERBY.
—— 11
M  a
Lord Tenter den to Mr. Meade.
Sir, Foreign Off ce, August 11, 1^75.
I AM directed by the Earl of Derby to transmit to you, for the information of the
Earl of Carnarvon, the accompanying copy of a despatch which has been addressed to
Sir E. Thornton,* on the subject of the refusal of the United States' Customs authorities
to allow the importation, free of duty, of fish and fish-oil from British Columbia undfi.^
the XXIst Article of the Treaty of Washington of May 8, 1871.
I am, &c.
(Signed) TENTERDEX.
No. 13.
The Earl of Derby to Sir E. Thornton.
Sir, Foreign Office, August J 4, 1875.
I INCLOSE for your information copy of a letter from the Colonial Office on the
subject of the importation into the United States, free of duty, of fish and fish-oil from
British Columbia, f
I am, &c.
(Signed; DERBY.
No. 14.
Mr. Herbert to Lord Tenter den.— {Received August 20.)
(Extract.) Downing Street, August 19, 1875.
I AM directed by the Earl of Carnarvon to acknowledge the receipt of your let 13
XTX of the Treaty, which apply only to fisheries on the Eastern or Atlantic side of the
Continent.    .
4. The Article XXXIII provides the means by which the several Articles named are
to be carried into operation, but does not provide for extending the meaning or operation
of these Articles, and Her Majesty's Government are advised that the Act of Congress
ot the 1st March, 1873, and the Act of the Parliament of Canada of the 14th of June,
1872, must both be construed with reference to the "Dominion of Canada," as that
Dominion was on the 8th of May, 1371.
5. I regret very much that for these reasons it has not appeared possible to instruct
Sir E. Thornton to bring the matter before the United States' Government as proposed
by the Dominion Government.
I have, &c.
(Signed) CARNARVON..  

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