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Papers relative to the proposed union of British Columbia and Vancouver Island 1866

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Array       PAPERS

Presented to both Houses of Parliament by Command of Her Majesty,
31st May 1866.
[Price 6d.]
1866.	 11
From whom.
Date and Number.
The Duke of Newcastle to Governor
Sir J. Douglas.
Ditto       ditto
Ditto       ditto
Ditto       ditto
Mr. Secretary Card-
well to Governor
Governor Kennedy to
Mr. Secretary Card-
Ditto       ditto
Governor Seymour to
Mr. Secretary Card-
Governor Kennedy to
Mr. Secretary Card-
Mr. Secretary Card-
well to Governor
Governor Seymour to
Mr. Secretary Card-
Officer administering
the Government of
British Columbia to
Mr. Secretary Card-
26 May 1863
15 June 1863
14 July 1863
(No. 35.)
States that the Act for the Government of British
Columbia will be continued for a year, and enclosing Draft Order in Council, constituting the
Legislative Council..
-   Constitutional arrangements for Vancouver Island
and British Columbia.
Ditto Ditto.
1 August 1863   -
30 April 1864
(No. 2.)
21 March 1865
(No. 14.)
( Separate.)
21 March 1865
(No. 15.)
21 March 1865
(No. 16.)
21 March 1865
(No. 30.)
Instructions to the Governor, appointing certain
officers to be Members of the Legislative Council in British Columbia.
On the subject of the Resolution of the House of
Representatives of Vancouver Island to decline
to pass the Civil List Act proposed in the Duke
of Newcastle's Despatch, Separate, of the 15
June 1863.
Reporting Resolution of Legislative Assembly in
favour of Union with British Columbia.
Transmitting Resolutions of the Chamber of Commerce.
Governor Kennedy's views on the proposed Uniont
Resolutions of  the   Chamber of  Commerce  of
29 March 1865 - Forwarding Petition to Governor from Miners of
(Separate.) Cariboo, and Governor's-reply.
1 December 1865 Transmitting Petition praying for continuance of
(No. 92.) Free Port Policy.
16 December 1865
(No. 97.)
1 February 1866
(No. 6.)
17 February 1866
3 March 1866
(No. 16.)
Resolutions of the Assembly on the Union.
Governor Seymour's views on the proposed Union.
.Transmitting Petition to the Queen for Union of
the Two Colonies.
Acknowledging the receipt of the Memorial con- |    34
tained in Governor's Despatch, No. 92, of the
1st December 1865.
42 ( 1 )
Copy of a DESPATCH from his Grace the Duke of Newcastle, K.G., to Governor
Sir James Douglas, K.C.B.
Sir, Downing Street, May 26, 1863.
As the Act for the Government of British Columbia will expire at the end of the
present session of Parliament I think it necessary to inform you of the course which it is
my intention to pursue with respect to the future administration of that Colony.
I shall, in the first place, propose to Parliament a Bill continuing the present Act
for another year, and annexing to British Columbia what is at present the Stekeen
I shall also submit to Her Majesty an Order in Council, constituting a Legislative
Council in British Columbia, in pursuance of the 3rd section of the Act of 22 Vict.
cap. 99- The power of nominating the members of this Council will, in the first
instance, be vested in the Governor, but I wish it to be so exercised as to constitute a
partially representative body, capable of making the wishes of the community felt, and
calculated to pave the way for a more formal, if not a larger introduction of the representative element. I shall of course make you more fully acquainted with my views in
this respect hereafter; but I think it best to communicate to you confidentially the
draft of an Order in Council, which I have caused to be prepared, but which may
possibly be altered in some of its details before it is finally passed.
I have, &c.
Governor Sir J. Douglas, K.C.B. ;   (Signed)        NEWCASTLE.
&c. &c.
No. 2.
Copy of a DESPATCH from his Grace the Duke of Newcastle, K.G., to Governor
Sir James Douglas, K.C.B.
Sir, Downing Street, June 15, 1863.
I have long had under my consideration the various questions which have arisen
respecting the form of Government which should be adopted in British Columbia and
Vancouver Island ; and I have now to communicate to you the decision at which I have
I should have much desired, if it had been possible, that these two Colonies should
have formed one Government. I feel confident that economy and efficiency would be
promoted, that commerce would be facilitated, that political capacity would be developed, that the strength of the Colonies would be consolidated, and generally that their
well-being would be greatly advanced by such an union ; and I hope that moderate and
far-seeing ipen in both communities will be convinced of this, and will bear in mind the
expediency of avoiding or removing all that is likely to impede, and favouring all that is
H923. A   2
No. 2. British
| Columbia
i Vancouver
likely to facilitate such a result. But I am aware that the prevailing feeling is at present strongly adverse to such a measure, and in deference to that feeling I am prepared
to take steps for placing them under different Governors, so soon as proper financial
arrangements are made for the permanent support ofthe Government.
With regard to Vancouver Island I think that a permanent Act of the Legislature
should be passed, securing to the principal officers of the Government salaries at the
following rates, which the importance of the Colony and the prospects of its revenue
appear to render no more than fitting :—
Chief Justice
Colonial Secretary
Attorney General
Surveyor General
800—(to be  1,200/. when
a lawyer is appointed.)
300, with practice.
The initiation of all money votes should also be secured to the Government.
When this is done I am prepared to hold the Crown revenue of Vancouver Island at
the disposal of the Legislature of that Colony, retaining only such temporary power over
the land as will enable Her Majesty's Government to close its transactions with the
Hudson's Bay Company. When this is effected I shall be ready to transfer the management of the revenue to the Colonial Legislature.
With regard to British Columbia, adverting to the magnitude of the colonial interests
and to the steady progression of the local revenue, I should wish you at once to proclaim a permanent law enabling Her Majesty to allot salaries to the Government officers
of British Columbia at the following rates:—
Governor -
Chief Justice       ...
Colonial Secretary
Attorney General
Treasurer -
Commissioner of Lands and Surveyor General
Collector of Customs
Chief Inspector of Police
Registrar of Deeds
3,000, with a suitable
500, with practice.
It will then follow to give effect to the enclosed Order in Council, which Her Majesty
has been pleased to issue, in order to prepare the way for,giving the inhabitants of
the Colony a due influence in its government- I should have wished to establish there
the same representative institutions which already, exist in Vancouver Island jj and it is
not without reluctance that I have come to the conclusion that this is at present
It is, however, plain that the fixed population of British Columbia is not yet large
enough to form a sufficient and sound basis of representation, while the migratory element
far exceeds the fixed, and the Indian far outnumbers both together.
Gold is the only produce of the Colony, extracted in a great measure by an annual
influx of foreigners. Of landed proprietors there are next to none, of tradesmen not
very many, and these are occupied in. their own pursuits at a distance from the centre, of
Government, and from each other. Under these circumstances I see no mode of establishing a purely representative Legislature, which would not be open to one of two
objections. Either^ it must place the Government of the Colony under the exclusive
control of a small circle of persons naturally occupied with their own local, personal, or
class interests, or it must confide a large amount of political power to immigrant,
or rather transient foreigners, who have no permanent interest in the prosperity ofthe
For these reasons I think it necessary that the Government should retain for the
present a preponderating influence in the Legislature. From the best information I can
obtain I am disposed to think it most advisable that about one-third of the Council
should consist of the Colonial Secretary and other officers who generally compose the
Executive Council, about one-third of magistrates from different parts of the Colony,
and about one-third of persons elected by the residents of different electoral districts. OF BRITISH COLUMBIA AND VANCOUVER ISLAND.
But here I am met by the difficulty that these residents are not only few and scattered,
but (like the foreign gold-diggers) migratory and unsettled, and that any definition of
electoral districts now'made might, in the lapse of a few months, become wholly inapplicable to the state of the Colony. It would, therefore, be trifling to attempt such a
definition, nor am I disposed to rely on any untried contrivances which might be
suggested for supplying its place—contrivances which depend for their success on a
variety of circumstances, which, with my present information, I cannot safely assume to
I have, therefore, thought it most advisable to have recourse in British Columbia to
the tried machinery of a Legislative Council, with the intention, however, that the
appointments to that Council, which by the enclosed Order you are authorized to make,
shall be made, if not in exact accordance with the outline which I have traced, yet at
any rate writh the object of securing that at least one-third of the councillors shall be
persons recognized by the residents in the Colony as representing their feelings and'
interests. By what exact process this quasi-representation shall be accomplished, whether
by ascertaining informally the sense of the residents in each locality, or by bringing the
question before different public meetings, or (as is done in Ceylon) by accepting the
nominee of any corporate body or society, I leave you to determine. I also leave it you
to determine the period for which (subject to Her Majesty's pleasure, which involves
a practical power of dissolution,) the councillors should be appointed. What I desire
is this: that a system of virtual though imperfect representation shall be at once introduced, which shall enable Her Majesty's Government to ascertain with some certainty
the character, wants, and disposition of the community, with a view to the more formal
and complete establishment of a representative system as circumstances shall admit of it.
I shall hold the proceeds of the Crown lands at the disposal of the Legislative
Council, who will also be at liberty to pass laws for the regulation and management of
these sources of revenue, subject of course to disallowance in this country, and subject
also to the qualification which I have mentioned as indispensable in Vancouver Island,
viz., that the Crown must retain such legal powers over the lands as are necessary for
disposing of all questions (if any) which remain to be settled with the Hudson's Bay
Company—questions which, without such uncontrolled power, might still be productive
of embarrassment.
With these explanations, I have to instruct you, first, to proclaim a law securing to
Her Majesty the right to allot the above salaries to the officials of British Columbia;
and having done so, to give publicity to the enclosed Order in Council, and to convene 0rder i
as soon as possible the proposed Legislature.
Governor Sir J. Douglas, K.C.B.
&c, &e.
I hsve &c.
(Signed)       NEWCASTLE.
Enclosure in No. 2-.
British Columbia.
At the Court at Windsor the llth day of June 1863.
Encl. in No. 2.
Lord President.
The Queen's Most Excellent Majesty.
Earl Russell. Lord Privy Seal.
Mr. Milner Gibson.
-Whereas by an Act passed in the twenty-second year of the reign of Her Majesty, entitled
" An Act to provide for the Government of British Columbia," it was declared lawful for Her Majesty,
by Order in Council, to authorize and empower such officer as she might from time to time appoint to
adminster the Government of British Columbia, to make provision for the administration of justice
therein, and generally to make, ordain, and establish all such laws, institutions, and ordinances as might
be necessary for the peace, order, and good government of Her Majesty's subjects and others therein ;
provided 'that it should be lawful for Her Majesty, as soon as She might deem it convenient by any such
Order in Council as aforesaid, to constitute, or to authorize and empower such officer to constitute a
Legislature, to make laws for the peace, order, and good government of British Columbia, such Legislature to consist of the Governor or Officer administering the government of the Colony, and a Council
or Council and Assembly to be composed of such and so many persons, and to be appointed or elected
in such manner, and for such periods, and subject to such regulations as to Her Majesty might seem
expedient: And whereas by an Order in Council bearing date on the 2nd day of September in the
year 1858, Her Majesty was pleased to authorize such Governor or Officer as aforesaid to make provision for the administration of justice, and as therein mentioned to make laws and ordinances for the
peace, order, and good government of Her Majesty's subjects and others in the said Colony: And
whereas it is expedient to revoke the said Ocder in Council, and to constitute a Legislature for the
said Colony, consisting of the Governor or Officer administering the government thereof, and the
Legislative Council herein-after established. \
1. It is hereby ordered by Her Majesty, by and with the advice of Her Privy Council, and in
Vancouver pursuance and exercise of the powers vested in Her Majesty by the said Act of Parliament, or other-
Island.     wise in that behalf, that the said recited Order in Council shall be and the same is hereby revoked:
        Provided always, that nothing herein contained shall be held to invalidate any act or thing done, nor
any appointment made in pursuance or under authority of the said Order in Council, but that every
such act, thing, and appointment shall remain of the same force and effect as if the said Order in
Council were still in operation.
And it is hereby further ordered as follows, that is to say:
2. In this Order in Council the term Governor shall mean the officer for the time being lawfully
administering the government of the Colony of British Columbia.
3. There shall be in the said Colony a Legislative Council constituted as herein-after mentioned.
4. It shall be lawful for the Governor, with the advice and consent of the said Legislative Council,
to make laws for the peace, order, and good government of the said Colony.
5. The said Council shall consist of such public officers within the said Colony as shall from time to
time be designated, and of such persons as shall from time to time be named by or in pursuance of any
instructions or warrant under the Royal sign manual and signet, and of such other persons as may
from time to time be appointed by the Governor by instruments to be passed under the public seal of
the said Colony: Provided that every such last-mentioned appointment shall be provisional only until
the same shall have been-approved by Her Majesty through one of Her Principal Secretaries of State,
and may be made to determine at a period named in the instrument making the same, and that the
total number of councillors shall not by any such appointment be raised above the number of 15:
Provided also, that every member of the said Council shall hold office during Her Majesty's pleasure
6. The precedence of the members of the said Council may be from time to time determined by any
such instructions as aforesaid. In the absence of such determination, the members shall take rank
according to the order of their appointment, or if appointed by the same instrument according to the
order in which they are named therein.
7. The Governor, or in his absence any member of the Council appointed by him in writing, or in
default of such appointment, the member present who shall stand first in order of precedence, shall
preside at every meeting of the said Council. All questions brought' before the Couneil shall be
decided by the majority of the votes given, and the Governor or presiding member shall have an
original vote on all such questions, and also a casting vote if the votes shall be equally divided.
8. No business (except that of adjournment) shall be transacted unless there shall be present four
members of Council besides the Governor or presiding member.
9. The Council shall, in the transaction of business and passing of laws, conform as nearly as may be
to the directions conveyed in that behalf to the Governor of British Columbia in certain instructions
under the sign manual and signet bearing date the 2nd day of September 1858, until otherwise provided
by us, and to such further instructions under the said sign manual and signet as may* hereafter be
addressed to the Governor in that behalf.
10. Subject to such instructions the Council may make standing rules and orders for the regulation
of their own proceedings.
11. No law shall take effect until the Governor shall have assented to the same on behalf of Her
Majesty, and shall have signed the same in token of such assent.
12. Her Majesty may, by Order in Council, or through one of Her Principal Secretaries of State,
disallow any law passed by the said Governor and Council at any time within two years after such law
shall have been received by the Secretary of State, and every law so disallowed shall become null and
void so soon as the disallowance thereof shall be published in the Colony by authority of the Governor.
13. If any councillor shall become bankrvfpt or insolvent, or shall be convicted of any criminal
offence, or shall absent himself from British Columbia for more than three months without leave from
the Governor, the Governor may declare in writing that his seat at the Council is vacant, and immediately on the publication of such declaration, he shall cease to be member of the Council.
14. The Governor may, by writing under his hand and seal, suspend any legislative councillor from
the exercise of his office, proceeding therein in such manner as may from time to time be enjoined by
any such instructions as aforesaid, and until otherwise ordered according to such directions respecting
the suspension of public officers as are contained in the above-mentioned instructions bearing date the
2nd day of September 1858. And the Most Noble the Duke of Newcastle, one of Her Majesty's
Principal Secretaries of State, is to give the necessary directions herein accordingly.
(Signed)        Arthur Helps.
No. 3. No. 3.
Copy of a DESPATCH from his Grace the Duke of Newcastle, K.G., to Governor
Sir James Douglas, K.C.B.
(No. 35.)
SlR'     T ffi . \ Downing Street, July 14,1863.
l think it best to inform you that I am  about to submit for Her Majestv's
approval  certain instructions appointing   the following officers to be members of the
Legislative Council m British Columbia.
The Colonial Secretary.
The Attorney General.
The Treasurer.
The Chief Commissioner of Lands and
The Collector of Customs.
jj I think it also advisable to point out that as doubts may be entertained respecting the    bri
binding authority of any proclamation issued by you subsequently to the date of the   Columbia
Order in Council  constituting a Legislative Council (viz., the Colonial Secretary, the       **<»
Attorney General, the Treasurer, the Chief Commissioner of Lands and Works, and the Vumony&t
Collector of Customs,) your first step in convening the Council should be to re-enact in     JsLASDm
the form of  an Ordinance any proclamation or proclamations  which you may hav«
issued after the above date, including the proclamation (if any) by which you may have
paid the salaries of public officers.
I have, &c.
Governor Sir J. Douglas, K.C.B. (Signed)       NEWCASTLE
&c. &c.
No. 4.
No. 4
Copy of a DESPATCH from his Grace the Duke of Newcastle, K.G., to Governor
Sir James Douglas, K.C.B.
( Separate.)
Sir, Downing Street, August 1, 1863.
With reference to my Despatch, No. 35* of the 14th ultimo, I transmit  to you * Page 4.
herewith instructions f under the Queen's sign manual  and signet, appointing the follow- t Not printed
ing officers, viz.:
The Colonial Secretary,
The Attorney General,
The Treasurer,
The Chief Commissioner of Lands and Works,
The Collector of Customs,
to  be members of the Legislative Council of British Columbia.
I have, &c.
Governor Sir J. Douglas, K.C.B. (Signed)        NEWCASTLE.
&c. &c.
No. 5.
Copy of a DESPATCH from the Right Hon. Edward Cardwell, M.P., to Governor
Kennedy, C.B.
(No. 2.)
Sir, Downing Street, April 30, 1864.
I have received Sir James Douglas's Despatch No. 3, of the 12th of February,
enclosing a Resolution of the House of Assembly of Vancouver Island, in which the
House declines to pass the Civil List Act, proposed in the Duke of Newcastle's Despatch
marked i Separate," ofthe 15th June last.J
I regret that the House of Assembly did not feel able to concur in the proposals
submitted to it on this subject.
I am desirous, however, to prevent as far as possible the disappointment and inconvenience to individuals which this decision might occasion.
It appears from the Resolution of the Assembly that the Crown land fund for the year
1863 amounted to 4,500/., but that a considerable portion of this sum consisted ofthe proceeds of sales effected in former years. There may be sources of revenue, such as fines and
forfeitures, fees of office, the proceeds of which the Crown could justly appropriate, but in
the absence of any precise information on this head I can only authorize you to issue
warrants for the payment of the salaries of the Governor and the Colonial Secretary, at
the respective rates of 3,000/. and 600/. per annum assigned to them by my predecessor,
out of any funds which may be under the direct control and at the disposal of the
It will of course rest with the Legislature to make provision for the remuneration of
the other officers employed under the Government in any way and from any source
which may seem most appropriate to them.
Besides the Civil List, Sir James Douglas's Despatch raises a still larger and more
important question, namely, the union of both Colonies under one Governor, though with
some distinct administrative department.
A 4
No. 5.
1 Page 1.
On this subject I am desirous of having the benefit of your views as soon as you shall
have acquired on the spot sufficient experience and knowledge to enable you to form
your opinion, and to supply reliable information for the assistance and guidance' of Her
Majesty's Government in considering the question. I shall in like manner ask Governor
Seymour, to whom I shall communicate a copy of this Despatch, to furnish his views on
the same matter, and I need scarcely say that it will not only be unobjectionable but
highly desirable, that you and he should consult freely on the subject, although it will
be the most convenient course that, ultimately, each should report to me independently,
the conclusions which he may form on the subject.
I have, &c.
Governor Kennedy, C.B., (Signed)       EDWARD CARD WELL.
&c. &c.
No. 6.
27th Jan. 1865
Page 5.
No. 6.
Copy of a DESPATCH from Governor Kennedy, C.B., to the Right Hon. Edward
Card well, M.P.
(No, 14.    Separate.)
Sir, Victoria, March 21, 1865.
(Received May 15, 1865.)
I have the honour to transmit a copy of Resolutions passed by the Legislative
Assembly of Vancouver Island on the subject of union with British Columbia, and in
doing; so I will shortly trace their history.
They were introduced by Mr. De Cosmos, one of the members for Victoria, and
passed on the 27th January 1865, after a warm debate, by a majority of 8 to 4.
It was thereupon alleged by the minority that the majority did not fairly represent
public opinion, and to test this fact, Mr. De Cosmos, who proposed, and Mr. C. B.
Young, who opposed the resolutions (being two members for the city of Victoria), agreed
to resign their seats, and went before their constituents for re-election, which resulted in
the return of Mr. De Cosmos and Mr. McClure, both advocates of union and a tariff,
by a large majority.
The majority of the House of Assembly in favour of unconditional union with British
Columbia is now, I believe, 11 to 4, and I have no doubt that a dissolution of the House
would undoubtedly increase that majority by two more.
I submitted these resolutions to the Legislative Council for their information, and the
majority present being ex officio members, resolved that it was inexpedient for the Council
to express any opinion on the subject; but two dissenting members, Messrs. Finlayson and
Rhodes, recorded their views in the protest herewith.
I am in a position to know that the majority if not all the ex officio members are in
favour of union, with some small differences of opinion on matters of detail, and that
they refrained from a public expression of their opinion from a desire to avoid possible
complication, and with a view to giving their untrammelled support to such measures as
Her Majesty's Government may deem most fitting, on a future occasion.
The local Legislature of Vancouver Island have thus, I think, adopted the only
course by which the union of these Colonies can be satisfactorily effected, namely,
leaving conditions and details, even to the form of government, to your decision.
I enclose newspaper copies of the debates on the subject, and will reserve my further
observations for another Despatch of this date, in reply to yours dated 30th April 1864 *
No. 2. I '
Right Hon. Edward Cardwell, M.P.,
&c. &c. &c.
I have, &c.
(Signed)       A. E. KENNEDY.
End. i in No. 6. Enclosure 1 in No. 6.
Vancouver Island.
Resolutions reported from Committee, 25th January 1865;   Confirmed by House
27th January 1865. '
That this House, after having taken into consideration the present state of the Colony is firmlv
convinced that it is expedient at the present time to observe the strictest economv in the public
expenditure compatible with the efficiency of the public service.    And that the immediate union OF BRITISH COLUMBIA AND VANCOUVER ISLAND. 7
of this Colony with British Columbia, under such Constitution as Her Majesty's Government may be
pleased to grant, is the means best adapted to prevent permanent causes of depression, as well as to
stimulate trade, foster industry, develop our resources, augment our population, • and ensure our
permanent prosperity; and this House pledges itself, in case Her Majesty's Government shall
grant such union, to ratify the same by legislative enactment, if required.
That  the  above resolution be transmitted to his Excellency the Governor, with the respectful
request that he may take the, same into his earnest and immediate consideration.
(Signed) R. "W. Torrens,
Clerk of the House.
Enclosure 2 in No. 6.
Vancouver Island.
Extract from the Minutes ofthe Legislative Council, 2nd March 1865.
Mr. Finlayson, pursuant to notice, introduced the following resolutions, which were seconded by
the Hon. Henry Rhodes:—
1. That Her most Gracious Majesty may be requested to annex the Colony of Vancouver Island
to the Colony of British Columbia.
2. That Her most Gracious Majesty may be pleased to direct the passage of an Act of the Imperial
Parliament to provide a constitutional mode of Government, with representation on the basis of population to the British possessions in the North Pacific.
The Treasurer handed in the following amendment to the proposed resolutions of the Hon. R.
" That this Council regards it as undesirable to express an opinion as to the expediency or otherwise
of uniting the Colonies of Vancouver Island and British Columbia."
The chairman having put the amendment of the Treasurer, the following were the Ayes and Noes:—
For the amendment—The Acting Colonial Secretary, the Acting Attorney General, the Treasurer,
the Acting Surveyor General. Against the amendment—The Hon. R. Finlayson, the Hon. Henry
Amendment carried.
The Hon. Henry Rhodes gave notice that he would hand in a protest against the resolution.
End. 2 in No. 6.
Enclosure 3 in No. 6.
Vancouver Island.
End. 3 in No. 6.
Extract from the Minutes of the Legislative Council, 6th March 1865.
The Hon. Henry Rhodes handed in the following protest, which was ordered to be placed on the
To the Honourable the President of the Legislative Council.
We, the undersigned, being the only unofficial members of the Legislative Council present at the
meeting  on  the  2nd instant, and being merchants in the city of Victoria, do protest against the
resolution of the Legislative Council in regard to the union resolutions which then came up for
1st. The resolution—" That the Council regard it as undesirable to express an opinion as to the
" expediency or otherwise of uniting the Colonies of Vancouver Island and British Columbia" was
carried by the official members of the Council only, who are at all times the majority of the said
2nd. "We consider it unwise and impolitic to postpone indefinitely the consideration of the subject,
for the reason that we know the feeling of the Colony to be in favour of union of the Colonies, and that
since the'question has been so thoroughly considered recently and the entire community agitated upon
the subject, the present is the most desirable time for decisive action in the matter.
' That the' postponement of the settlement of the question will greatly disturb commerce, prevent
enterprise, and do much injury to both Colonies, while on the other hand the sooner the question is
settled the better it must be for all the interests of both Colonies.
(Signed) Henry Rhodes,
Rodk. Finlayson.
End. 4 in No. 6.
Enclosure 4' in No. 6.
House of Assembly, Wednesday, January 25th.
House met at 3.15 p.m.    Members present—Messrs. De Cosmos, Franklin, Young, Trimble, Tolmie,
Dickson, Southgate, Duncan, Cochrane, Burnaby, Carswell, Bayley, Dennes.
State ofthe Colony.
Mr. De Cosmos said he would ask that the committee have leave to consider the internal condition
of the Colony. ; 1    .       ,
Mr. Burnaby asked the hon. senior member for Victoria to lay before the House the resolutions He
had prepared.
Mr. De Cosmos replied that he was then re-writing them.
Mr. Young said a great deal of irrelevant matter had been delivered in the House on this question of
the state of the Colony. The state of the Colony was all right, but the state of some men's heads was
all wrong. The great want in the Colony was population. (Hear, hear.) As for the revenue he was
vain enough to assume the reins of Chancellor of the Exchequer for the moment, and show how it
might be raised by a proper system of taxation. A great deal had been said about a tariff, but we
would see what good it would do.   The hon. gentleman alluded to lumberers not being benefited by a
to   a
Cosmos submitted the following resolutions to the committee—
nor tailors and shoemakers, &c, who had now as much as they could do; he also alluded
brewer who was the greatest protectionist in the Colony, but who would not get his
grain any cheaper with a 20 per cent, tariff. The position of this Colony was such as
to make it a great commercial emporium, and it was such already. It was asked how we were
to get the gold of British Columbia. Why, by going to dig it out, as so many of our people did. As
to the estimates asked for, if we thought them too large, all we had to do was not to vote them ; and
he could not see any reason why they should be larger this year than last. As to customs, the cost
of collecting would be enormous, to prevent the smuggling, for which such great facilities were afforded
by our numerous bays and inlets. What was to hinder our farmers from competing with foreign
farmers ? Why, because they had not the land. This was destined to be a mineral country, not an
agricultural. He could not see in any way how this Colony was to be benefited by taxation. If a man
pays 20 per cent, more taxation, how can it benefit him? Suppose a man paid $10 for a coat last year,
and this year has to pay $12 for the same, what is his advantage ? He thought $150,000 could be
struck off the estimates very easily, by dispensing with lazy clerks who did nothing, and constables who
played euehre in public houses and such like. He certainly could not see the benefits of a tariff, and
would, therefore, do all he could to oppose it.
Mr. De
Resolved :—
That this House, after having taken into consideration the present state of the Colony, is firmly convinced that it is expedient at the present time to observe the strictest economy in the public
expenditure compatible with the efficiency of the public service ; and that the immediate union
of this Colony with British Columbia, under such constitution as Her Majesty's Government may
be pleased to grant, is the means best adapted to prevent permanent causes of depression, as well
as to stimulate trade, foster industry, develop our resources, augment our population, and ensure
our permanent prosperity; and this House pledges itself, in case Her Majesty's Government shall
grant such union, to ratify the same by legislative enactments if required.
That the above resolution be transmitted to his Excellency the Governor, with the respectful request
that he may take the same into his earnest and immediate consideration.
Mr. Burnaby said he had hailed the resolutions with satisfaction on their first appearance as connected
\ with the consideration of the estimates. These estimates were, he must confess, rather startling in
amount in proportion to the revenue of the Colony. (Much of this hon. gentleman's speech was
inaudible at the reporter's table.) He was sorry to hear some people, who had fomerly held different
opinions, say that, eyen if the country stood alone as a separate Colony the system of taxation must be
changed and a tariff imposed (no, no). If we stand alone as a Colony we must stand in a respectable and
honourable position before the world. We must pay our Governor's salary, and maintain a proper
establishment. We must persist in our system of direct taxation. He was free to admit that taxation
here was very unequally divided, and would wish to see it arranged so as to touch all classes ; but if we
stood alone we must have direct taxation (hear, hear). Some twoyears ago at the general election a
pledge was exacted from nearly every hon. member of this Housemtavour of the free port, and they could
not have got in without it. At that time also the union question had come up, and he (Mr. Burnaby)
had entertained and expressed the views that we were not prepared for union. His views of that date
as to the free port and union were unchanged, and his faith in the resources of the Colony were still as
strong as ever. Since that period gold had been discovered on the Island; it had got to be developed,
but it was here beyond a doubt. Again the new district of Kootenay in British Columbia was pronounced to be highly productive. We had been told that the free port was a failure. He respectfully
demurred to that proposition. True a great depression had existed here for some time. During the
whole of last year a most severe financial pressure had been felt in England. In California, in addition
to drought and hard winter, a severe prostration had occurred in mining affaii
—• & ggs.    Again in British
Columbia vast sums had been expended in works, trade, mining, &c, which had not produced as yet
the remuneration.which was expected. All this had, to a certain extent/caused a temporary depression and
"he was sorry to say that the "■••-■■■■ < ! ■     .    i. '
he might term a sorl
during the last nine:
uons against the policy of free trade; the country had to be inoculated with the feeling, and he must admit
it had been well and skilfully done. All the troubles and depression in the Colony had been carefully
attributed to it, and now the remedy proposed was the imposition of a tariff. This change in public
opinion, which the hon. senior member for Victoria dignified by the title of a great revolution he
maintained was made without reason. The hon. member who had introduced the resolution had dwelt
at some length on the danger of our present position ; that in ourselves we had no resources outside
the trade of British Columbia, and no position of importance (hear, hear). Those engaged in trade
here had been taunted that they had not properly developed the trade and commerce of the country. '
He would remind hon. gentlemen that the action of the House was the best proof of the wisdom of
our merchants in not accepting the free port as a fixed and permanent fact. The free port required to
be firmly established before our merchants would import large stocks of goods suitable for distant
and foreign markets; they could not be expected to do so, if they thought they would be liable
to a duty in six months or a year. So long as there was a possibility of a change in the public
mind on the free port, much would not be done towards making this a great distributing centre.
The House had two positions before it: one was that of absolute independence coupled with a
free port, and a resolution to carry out the policy at all costs and every risk and in a dignified
manner, trusting to the hope afforded by our geographical position that we would ultimately become
a great distributing port. He took his stand on the free port, and he would continue to stand on that
policy bo long as the country would support him. This was the opinion of ail the merchants in the community and of our neighbours in California. He did not fear the imposition of a differential duty of 7 or
10 per cent, by British Columbia. If necessary, our merchants here could establish branches at New Westminster, but here was the depot, the open free port, the locus standi of the capital. If the country should
decide to give up the free port there was no alternative but unconditional union; he was not too proud
to call it annexation (hear, hear). It was simply saying to British Columbia, we are not strong enough
to stand alone, come and help us. But before we decided on this question in the House let us request
his Excellency to appeal to the country; let us be sure that the country stands with us in a matter
so vital to the well-being of the Colony. He did not propose to go into the arguments for protection to
industry. The idea was exploded long ago. As to British Columbia being our greatest market, he had
always held that she was far more indebted to us; nine-tenths of all the enterprise, capital, energy,
expended in that Colony had come from here, and nine-tenths of all the results had come back here.
Mr. Duncan.—Yes, and gone through here.    (Laughter.)
Mr. Burnaby, if this House should decide to adopt the resolutions he hoped they would appeal to
his Excellency to dissolve the House, and go before their constituents to hear the views of the country.
(General cries of hear, hear.)
Dr. Helmcken said it seemed to be expected that he should declare himself (applause), and he
admitted that the public had a right to know who he was as much as he had to have an opinion of
himself.    He believed that the Colony was suffering under great depression at present, and he was
convinced that it was caused by overtrading.    Cariboo had turned out far less gold than had been
expected, and miners had returned with less gold.    There had been no returns for the money expended
in mining.    That he looked on as a temporary difficulty.    But the great cause of the depression was
the vast amount of accommodation afforded to traders by our merchants.   The goods were either locked
up in the mines or sold at a great loss.    A great deal of capital had been locked up also in quartz an<*
copper mines. This, however, he looked on as also a temporary suffering, and he fully expected we would
recover from it in time.    It was not alone here that the unemployed men who had been alluded to were
to be found.    In California it was just as bad, and from similar causes.    One might almost stop here,
and say that if the depression was only temporary it would soon be got over.    But other topics had been
entered on.    It had been  said that the depression had been caused by our neglecting to foster local
industries.    This he totally denied (hear, hear).    For himself he was still as much in favour of free
trade as ever.   He did not consider free trade had anything whatever to do with the present depression (hear, hear).    They were told that of the $4,000,000 of imports about $1,000,000 was left for
local consumption.    It seemed to him singular that our consumption was only $1,000,000 with a population larger than that of British Columbia, which consumed nearly $2,000,000.   He could only assume
from that that the production of Vancouver Island with free trade was greater than the production of
British Columbia with protection.    His own impression was that free trade was the best policy, both
hitherto and still (hear, hear).    The next subject was union ofthe two Colonies.    His opinion was that
union with British Columbia and free trade in Vancouver Island would conduce to the best interests of
both Colonies (hear, hear), and also be a very large saving in expense. Unfortunately our neighbours did
not see it in the same light.    Free trade, as it hitherto existed, had kept the trade of British Columbia
in the possession of Vancouver Island.    He did not think we were likely to have any great extension of
trade to any other of the surrounding countries, to India, or China, or Mexico.    He did not believe in
any such extension. There was no doubt union was the great thing to be aimed at, and that free trade
in Vancouver Island was the best policy9 but let us unite with British Columbia unconditionally (hear,
hear), unconditionally (applause), with one single exception, that the laws of Vancouver Island should
remain unchanged till altered by the United Legislature, and he felt sure that the arguments which
would be brought forward in the United. Legislature would prove that free trade in Vancouver Island
was the best policy for both Colonies.    In any case the great good would be attained,—the Colonies
united (hear, hear).    But if the Colonies were to be separate,, the only thing to be done was for each
man to strip  "to the buff" if necessary, and fight to the death for the free port (hear, hear).    As to
protection for agriculture in this Colony, he was convinced it was not required.    In British Columbia,
where there was greater protection than anywhere else in the world, agriculture had not progressed.
Mr. De Cosmos. It has; a great deal. .    m
Dr. Helmcken continued that this Colony had not the land for agriculture, but British Columbia had,
and the two united would combine their respective agricultural and commercial advantages in one.    He
repeated his position, united with British Columbia and with free trade in Vancouver Island, or united
at any rate, and still keeping the commerce of British Columbia, which our natural position ensured t<
us ; or if separate from British Columbia, then free trade in every sense.    These were his views.    But
he would not go to the British Columbians like a mendicant, rather would he vote for eternal separa-
he .
tion than go to beg a thing which was a mutual benefit.    As to our foreign trade, he would sacrifice all
the trade with surrounding nations to unite the two peoples and make one great country.
Dr. Tolmie would wish to add a few remarks.    It was not always best to bjy in the cheapest and sell
in the dearest markets.    Free 'trade was not always the policy of great countries.    Great Britain had
B 2 sm
T,PTT„TI     „rown rich and powerful by protection.   In the United States the question had been thoroughly argued,
Snd the United States had gone on protecting their industries, and at the same time ^easing their
and        population and rapidly augmenting their wealth.    We, ourselves, had given the thing a ,««.■
r ancouver years, and although he would not say it had done no good, still he thought the time was past tor tree trade,
Island.     and the country demanded protection.   Take the familiar example of the saw mill, quoted yesterday,
         (a laugh).   He had seen the working of saw mills under protection on Puget Sound, and had seen their
beneficial effects in building up the country. Our geographical position, which had been so much talked
about, and praised in the "Times" so early as 1849, would be best brought out and developed by union
with British Columbia, and by going into connexion with the great federation of the eastern Colonies
Dr. Helmcken said there was no doubt whatever that even if we should remain separate we could raise
all the revenue we required (hear, hear).    He had not a doubt of it.
Mr. Bayley said the present state of the Colony was one of insolvency (no, no, and laughter). He
maintained that this was the ease, and it had been caused by the falling off in gold and the over-speculation in real estate. He held that the trade of Victoria was dependent on British Columbia #nd not
on the phantom trade with foreign countries which had been held up so long before our eyes. He had
stood up in the House and opposed union with British Columbia, but that was because he had been led
to look atthis country as the Great Britain of the Pacific. He had now seen reason to change his
. opinion. He looked on Victoria as reduced to a mere shopkeeper (a laugh), who had to depend on
British Columbia to buy her wares. The moment that British Columbia was able to buy for herself
from the manufacturers and producers, what were we to do with our goods? Our warehouses would be
full, but no one to be purchasers, that was the state to which we were fast coming unless we adopted a
different policy.
Dr. Dickson said he had no fears about our ability to exist as a separate Colony; but union was
strength, and he was fully satisfied that a complete and thorough union was for the best interests of both
Colonies (hear, hear). He had taken the trouble to see the great majority of his constituents, and had
also heard the opinions of a great number of the inhabitants of the city, and he had come to the firm
conclusion that nineteen-twentieths of the whole population were thoroughly and strongly in favour of
union, and that they expected the House to take active steps to bring it about. Hon. members might
depend on it, too, that if they did not move in the matter their constituents would soon turn them out
and get in better men.
Mr. Franklin said he now found resolutions on the table, which had been ruled in order, opening up
the question of union. The question of union had already been settled; British Columbia had rejected
our offers, and we were now asked to go on bended knee and pray for a union. He had been returned
to this House on free trade principles, and he could not give a vote on the question without going before
his constituents, and he thought every honourable member was bound in honour to follow the same
course. He was unprepared to abandon the policy of this country and to adopt unconditional union,
and he felt sure that was the general opinion of the country (laughter).
Dr. Helmcken said hon. members had said that the union of the Colonies had been rejected by
British Columbia.    He denied it entirely (applause).
The Legislature of British Columbia had never taken the resolution of this Legislature into consideration at all (hear, hear). He felt sure the British Columbia Legislature would not be guilty of such
discourtesy as to throw our resolutions over without an answer (hear, hear). The question had evidently
never been considered, as we never have had an answer (applause).
Mr. Southgate said if he could see his way clear to a union which would preserve free trade in Vancouver Island he would heartily support it, but he did not see how it could be brought about He alluded
to Ms recent visit to San Francisco, and to the interest felt by merchants there in our free port.
The resolutions were then put seriatim, and the first section carried unanimously.
Section 2 was also carried.
Ayes—De Cosmos, Helmcken, Tolmie, Dickson, Duncan, Cochrane, Carswell, Dennes(8).
Noes—Franklin, Young, Burnaby, Trimble, Southgate (5).
Section 3 was also carried by the same vote.
On section 4, M . Burnaby moved the following amendment:
That in view of the resolutions passed by this House, and adverting to the pledges given by hon
members at their election on the subject of the free port, respectfully requests that his Excellency
will dissolve this House and submit the question to the country.
The amendment was lost, and the original resolution carried by the previous majority—8 to 5
HIfhf mmit1t.eerose and reported the passage of the resolutions, and the Speaker informed the
that they would come up for adoption on Friday next.
Legislative Assembly.
PowTd^™ D20  P'mn   PreSGnnt' ^ %eaker' and Mess^ ^urnabv, To^Tofif iiSoUin
Powell, Dickson, Duncan, Dennes, Carswell, De Cosmos, Bayley, Cochrane; and Southgate.   *ranklm'
Petition of Chamber of Commerce.
JjiolZ^C^l*™uht^m0afr0m*e^mh°< °f C°m— °f **<**.   I* reads
-k^ ft. free po* ^^™£^ SpSS^SST i£Si»
four honourable body the following resolutions passed
is will
spectfully to present for the consideration of
them at a meeting held this day ?
I our petitioners therefore humbly pray that your Honourable House will take  such action
maintain the free port in all its present integrity.
1. That, hi the opinion of the Victoria Chamber of Commerce, the maintenance of the Free Port
system is of vital importance to the prosperity of Victoria and of Vancouver Island.
2. That commerce should not be subjected to any species of restraint, because freedom from restraint
is calculated to give the utmost extension to foreign trade, and the best direction to the capital and
industry of the country.
3. That the adoption of a protective tariff would be detrimental to the commercial interest cf the
Colony without benefit to the farmer or manufacturer.
4. That a tariff for revenue would necessitate such an outlay of expenditure for the collection of the '
duties that it would not answer the requirements of the Government, and would inflict a heavy loss
on the commerce of Victoria.
5. That direct taxation is the only politic and equitable mode of raising a revenue.
6. That a general system of taxation by which all classes of the community would be made to
contribute to the support of the Government is the most simple and economical.
And your petitioners as in duty bound will ever pray.
For the members of the Victoria Chamber of Commerce.
Chas. W. Wallace, President.
A. F. Main, Secretary.
Victoria, Vancouver Island, Jan. 26th, 1865.
State ofthe Colony Besolutions.
The Speaker read over the resolutions passed by the committee of the whole, on Wednesday last
respecting the state of the Colony.
Mr. Young moved for a recommittal of the resolutions, and was proceeding to give his reasons, when
The Speaker said, that if any discussion arose on the resolutions they would have to be postponed
until Monday next.
Messrs. Franklin and Burnaby had some further remarks to make.
Mr. De Cosmos called " question."
The Speaker—| That I do now leave the chair ? "
Mr. De Cosmos—No !
On the suggestion of the Speaker, Mr. De Cosmos moved that the order of the day be discharged.
Mr. Franklin stated that the House had waited a long time for the estimates, and it was known that
Government business took precedence of all other. He hoped that the House would go on with the
business of the day.
Mr. Burnaby moved " that the Speaker do now leave the chair."
Mr. Young said that according to | May," Government business cannot be superseded.
Motion to leave the chair was lost by a vote of 8 to 5. The order of the day respecting the " state
of the Colony " was carried.
Mr. Young then moved that the resolutions be recommitted, and called the attention of the House to
the results of the meetings held in the city, and whether the almost unanimous opinion of the Chamber
of Commerce is to go for nothing, when there was but one voice in 20 against the maintenance of the
free port, and subsequently 7 others entered the room and acquiesced with the decision of that body.
He was about to advert to the decision in regard to the question at the Mechanics' Debating Club,
when he was called to order. Mr. Young stated that the question was not intended for the benefit of
the Colony, but for the benefit of individuals. [Mr. De Cosmos—no ! no !] It was not the case, as stated
by the press, that 9 out of 10 were in favour of a tariff. The hon gentleman (Mr. Young) quoted Washington territory to show that, with all its protection, the revenue derived from the custom house there
only sufficed to pay one quarter of the expenses connected therewith. It used to produce 80,000 bushels
of wheat, and now but 25,000 bushels, and all from the beautiful system of protection. He had his
information from a reliable authority. He would ask the House, what would be more humiliating than
for this Colony to go begging to British Columbia, asking to have its destiny hooked on with theirs.
With regard to the cereal productions of this Colony, Mr. Y. quoted the phrase, | the woodman's axe
" had not rung in the primeval forest, &c," which will be remembered was used by an honourable
member in connexion with the Crown Lands' report of last session of the House, and it caused much
merriment. The Hudson's Bay Company also came in for a share of the hon. gentleman's censure. Mr.
Young went on to state that a paid Legislature would be brought about by the course proposed; he had
often heard hon. gentlemen deprecate a paid Legislature, and he would not say that any hon. member
ever thought of such a thing for their own benefit. No, no. (Laughter.) He was surprised that an
hon. gentleman in the House, in the retail business, should favour a tariff of 20 per cent., and how could
he delude his customers or make them believe that there would be no consequent advance in his goods ?
To talk of union, with dissent on both sides, seemed to him most paradoxical. If the resolutions were
brought forward in a less humiliating manner to ourselves, we might arrive at something. He hoped
that hon. gentlemen would look to the serious consequences which would arise from the passage of the
resolutions, and he trusted that hon. members would not be deaf to the arguments used.
Dr. Tolmie said that they had heard nothing from Mr. Young approaching reason why the resolutions
should be recommitted; as to the personalities, those he would leave out altogether. As regards the
wheat raised in Washington territory, Mr. Tolmie stated that it arose from the poverty of the soil and
was not reproductive. With respect to the Chamber of Commerce, that body only dealt with a portion
of the question; union was not submitted at all. As to the dissent on both sides alluded to, the ques-
tion was never put before British Columbians as it was now put, and in British Columbia there was a
great deal of assent to union with this Colony.
Mr. Burnaby rose to make a last appeal, but from appearances he feared that he had but a small
B 3
Island. 12
chance. He would say a few words in order to put the question off for a short period, that the people
might be enabled to gain more time to consider the matter. He was not disposed to jest m the matter.
He would confess that he was unable to see the great advantages to be gained that other hon.
gentlemen saw. Doubts are expressed that the free port had not tended to the building up of this city,
but he was convinced that without free trade up to this time, the place would be comparatively small.
Mr. Burnaby alluded to the enterprise of our neighbours, who would take advantage to build up a
rival city on the opposite coast, and he brought to the notice of the House the petition of the Chamber
of Commerce, which represented the views of a portion ofthe community which paid a very large
share of the taxes and who developed the resources of the country to a great extent. That body
naturally, he said, felt the deepest interest in the matter. In regard to the question of union, they
foresaw that without it unconditional, there was no chance of the free port being given up. They did
not touch on union because they felt that it would be dealing with a political matter. Mr. B.
expressed his astonishment that hon. gentlemen who sat around that table and pledged themselves to
.their constituents 18 months ago to support the free port could now scatter those principles to the
"wind. By reason oTtiie~JneHges extracted from them they now sat in that House. How they could
reconcile their conduct with their conscience now he could not see. Union was desirable, but he
could not see what there was in the position of the Colony now, as compared with it 18 months ago,
which should make hon. members change their views. He would now ask hon. gentlemen, especially
in deference to the petition of the Chamber of Commerce which he laid before them, to postpone
the further discussion of the question for three weeks.
Mr. Franklin supported the motion of Mr. Burnaby, and would like also to treat the matter seriously.
They had arrived at a crisis in the history of the Colony. For the first time in the House it is proposed
to abolish the free port. [No, no, from Mr. De Cosmos.] He (Mr. F.) would accept the no, no, but
he questioned the sincerity of those no, noes. The hon. gentleman stated that he saw members before
him for whom he voted, and helped to gain a seat in the House, because they advocated free port
principles, and he had a right in his place to demand consistency from them. (Hear, hear.) He
thought that as guardians ofthe public they had no right to place the interests of the people in the
hands of the Secretary of State to do as he thought fit, and could they for a moment say. we will do as
we please ? Mr. Franklin touched on the subject of the claims made out by the Committee on Crown
Lands against the Hudson's Bay Company, and reminded hon. members if all these were to be swept
away in a moment, and with one dash of the pen, he urged hon. gentleman, to maintain the rights of
the people, and not to abandon them from selfish ambition. Were they to throw out Americans,
Frenchmen, Germans, Chinese, by substituting a restrictive policy>? The hon. gentleman here mentioned, as an instance of the many chances of fostering the free port, the recent order for issuing passports
by the American Government to people leaving the Colony. He would say with the hop. gentleman
who had just spoken (Mr. Burnaby), that they should think seriously before theyabandon the advantages
of a free port. Remember the question which is taken up by gentlemen who do not enter into politics
at all, and who say that if the free port is given up, they will leave the country; and he was assured
that several were about to establish themselves in the neighbouring territory. Once destroy the free
port, and the supremacy of Vancouver Island will go with it. Mr. F. wanted no political advancement;
\he would accept no office. British Columbia, with its revenue for this year of $400,000, in comparison
|with ours of $230,000, would, from the nature of things, control our revenue, and it would be expended
for their interests. Selfishness governs public men. The dreams of those who imagine that they are
going to become prime ministers, if reflected upon, cannot be realized. Again, if after nearly seven
years' existence, are three days going to change the entire policy of the country without giving the
people a chance to express their opinion ? He would say that to change the system would be a
political wrong, and a crime which should not be countenanced, and should disable any public man
from ever entering the House again.    The delay asked by Mr. Burnaby should be granted.
Mr. Young offered a few further observations.
Mr. Tolmie was agreeable to postpone the question for one week.    It would give ample time.
Mr. Burnaby accepted the amendment.
Mr. De Cosmos would accept nothing less than the bare resolutions passed by the Committee. He
replied with respect to the pledges given; he pledged himself to support a union of the two Colonies.
He was of opinion that if the country went against free port principles and remained a separate Colony,
that they would be committing political suicide. Mr. DeCosmos next spoke in relation to the views of
the Chamber of Commerce which so much stress had been laid upon, and he stated that the views of
some of the members were in favour of union. In relation to placing the interests of the Colony in the
hands of the Imperial Secretary of State, he was satisfied that the interests of the Colony would be
fairly dealt with; but if not, they (the House) could soon rectify it, as is to be seen in the case of the
appointing of the two Governors on the representation of the people of British Columbia. Any motion
to postpone would gain nothing, but would to a certain extent endanger their interests.
The Speaker then put the amendment to postpone the question for one week, but it was lost by the
following vote: Ayes—Burnaby, Tolmie, Franklin, Young, Southgate; (5.)    Noes—Dickson, Powell
Dennes, Duncan, Carswell, De Cosmos, Bayley; (7.) f
The original resolution was then put, and clause 1 was passed, when Mr. Franklin moved an
ment to come m after the word "grant" in clause 2, as follows: "with the exception of abs
" the free trade of the Colony."
Mr. De Cosmos said that the amendment was designed to clog the resolutions.
Messrs. Tolmie and Dickson took much the same raw of the matter; Dr. Dickson stating that it
did not necessarily follow that if there was. a union of the Colonies, the free port would be done away
with. •
Mr. Franklin did not mean the amendment as a « clog," but as a means to test the sincerity of hon
members. J
The amendment was lost.
rTn^pr;nIrnfgR^?rdpf0L-er a?lendnlent' to the effe<* that the resolutions be transmitted to the
governor ot British Columbia.    Lost: 7 to 5.
an amend-
Mr. Franklin said thai-it was an incongruity for the House to pledge itself to abide by the decision
of the Secretary of State for the Colonies. He hoped to see the present House dissolved, and then they
would get a dissolving view of the question. They could not legislate beyond the session, and besides
some of the members may resign, and the sense ofthe country might change in a couple of years.
Mr. Tolmie cited the example of the eastern British North American provinces, wherein they pledged
themselves to abide by the decision of the Home Government in their action with respect to the
Confederation scheme.
A few further remarks were made, and the resolutions passed as a whole by a vote of 8 to 4.
Ayes:—Tolmie, Dickson, Powell, Duncan, Dennes, Carswell, DeCosmos, Bayley.
Noes:—Burnaby, Young, Franklin, Southgate.
No. 7.
Copy of a  DESPATCH  from  Governor  Kennedy,  C.B.,  to the  Right  Hon.
Edward Cardwell, M.P.
No. 7.
(No. 15.—Separate.) Victoria, March 21, 1865.
^IR» (Received, May 15, 1865.)
Referring to my Despatch No. 14,* of this date, I have the honour to transmit * Page 6.
certain  resolutions   and a report of the Chamber of Commerce of Victoria, on the
subject of union with British Columbia.
I have, &c.
The Right Hon. Edward Cardwell, M.P., (Signed)        A. E. KENNEDY,
&c. &c. &c Governor.
Enclosure in No. 7.
Encl. in No.
Sir, Chamber of Commerce, Victoria, Vancouver Island, March 9, 1865.
Herewith I have the honour to hand you a series of resolutions, and a report relative thereto,
passed unanimously at a meeting of the Chamber of Commerce, held on the 6 th instant, and signed by
the members.
On behalf of the Chamber, I have to beg that you will be good enough to lay these resolutions
before his Excellency the Governor, with the request that his Excellency will be pleased to complv
with the prayer therein contained, and to transmit the documents to the Secretary of State for the
I have, &c.
(Signed)        Jules David,
President of the Victoria Chamber of Commerce.
Henry Wakeford, Esq., (Signed)        A. F. Main, Secretary
Acting Colonial Secretary.
Victoria, Vancouver Island, March 6, 1865,
The committee appointed by the Chamber of Commerce to draft a series of resolutions on the
subject of union with British Columbia, as viewed in connexion with the new tariff, respectfully submit
the following resolutions and report for the consideration of the Chamber:—
1. That an equitable union of the Colonies -of British Columbia and Vancouver Island at as early a
date as possible is essential to the maintenance of imperial and local interests in the British
possessions of the North Pacific.
2. That the Chamber of Commerce adhere, nevertheless, to its resolutions on the subject of the
free port lately adopted, believing that the interests of the two Colonies, whether united or
separate, will be best maintained by the preservation in its integrity in this Island of the free trade
policy hitherto pursued.
3. That these resolutions, with the annexed report, be signed by the whole of the members of the
Chamber of Commerce, and transmitted by the president to his Excellency the Governor, with
the prayer that they may be forwarded for the consideration of the Secretary of State for the
Colonies, with the resolutions of the House of Assembly on the same subject.
Passed unanimously at a general meeting of the Chamber of Commerce held the 6th day of
March 1865.
In adopting the aforegoing resolutions the members of the Chamber of Commerce of Victoria, Vancouver Island, representing as they do the chief part of the capital that has been invested in the joint
development of British Columbia and Vancouver Island, deem it proper to place on record the facts and
circumstances that necessitate their present expression of opinion.
Prior to the year 1858 the British possessions in the North Pacific attracted but slight attention; the
trading posts and forts of the Hudson's Bay Company, and a few farming establishments on Vancouver
Island under their control, being the only inducements for commerce, which, therefore, remained
entirely in the hands of the company by whom Vancouver Island was then held under a charter from
the Crown.
The discovery of gold on the River j^aser in 1858, a<nd the large floating population it attracted,
chiefly from California and Oregon, gave ah entirely new impetus to commerce.   Merchants and traders
B 4 WtM
followed the new community with capital and enterprise to supply its requirements in the quickest
manner and from the most convenient point.
The action of the Hudson's Bay Company in its corporate capacity, as well as of the several members
in their individual interests, proves conclusively that from the first the main land and Vancouver Island
were regarded as identical, and their separation, as a temporary condition of imperial policy, arising
out of the grant ofthe Island to the Company.
Victoria, as early as 1843, was selected by the Hudson's Bay Company as the most eligible spot for
carrying on business in North-west America to the best advantage, and the merchants who followed
them in 1858 ratified the wisdom of that choice.
It should be borne in mind that there were many reasons why American merchants should have
settled b> preference on the opposite coast, and should have thus derived on their own territory the
privileges for a coasting trade as well as of importing American produce duty free; there were the
further inducements of good town sites, excellent harbours, and access to British Columbia overland ;
but Victoria, with the prestige of a free port, offered greater advantages still.
The commanding nature of its geographical position, its convenient and capacious harbours of
Victoria and Esquimalt (the only safe harbours on the sea-board north of San Francisco, a distance of
700 miles, and approachable at all times by night or day for sea-going ships of any burthen); the
comparatively large area of open land in its vicinity; its proximity to the coal-fields of Nanaimo, and
its temperate and delightful climate, all indicated it as a natural depot, from whence might be
supplied not only the requirements of British Columbia, but of Puget Sound, Oregon, California*
Mexico, the Hawaiian Islands, and the Russian possessions in the North Pacific (all of which have
since become the customers of Victoria, and give promise of increasing trade), and thus to build up an
entrepot for British commerce and influence, the vast results of which, in course of time, can only be
matter of conjecture, occupying as Victoria does a most important position in what, when overland communication is opened through British Columbia, will be the shortest and healthiest route from Great
Britain to her many valuable possessions injthe east.
subsidy for monthly mail steam com-
The recent action of the United States Congress,
in voting
munication between China and San Francisco evinces that our neighbours are fully alive to the value
of securing this important traffic for themselves.
The selection of Esquimalt as the naval station for the North Pacific proves that these several points
have been duly weighed by the Imperial Government and their value recognized.
The internal resources of Vancouver Island, extensive and promising for the further successful
working of minerals, farming, and manufactures, are only casually referred to, as being but partially
h have yet to be proved,
developed.   The same may be said of the gold fields discovered last year,
and their richness and extent to be ascertained.
But the commercial interest of Vancouver Island, which is the peculiar province of this Chamber, is
an ascertained fact.
After the formal separation of the Colonies in 1858, and the establishment in 1859 of New Westminster as the capital of British Columbia, their relative positions remained the same, and under the
judicious rule of Sir James Douglas, then the joint Governor of both, the progress of the Colonies was
coincident, and their division merely nominal. The advancement of each was regarded as the benefit
of the other.
The shipping and importing interests were unable to avail themselves of New Westminster, (although
original purchasers, and still extensive holders of property there,) other than as a port of entry to the
interior of British Columbia, for the following reasons:—
The great additional risks and delay for sea-going ships without steam, navigating between Victoria
and the Fraser River.
The intricate, narrow, and uncertain channel through the sand-heads, at the mouth of the Fraser,
available only for ships drawing 16 feet at the utmost, and then requiring the assistance of steam.
The subsequent danger and delay attending river navigation to New Westminster, the current
during the summer freshets being very rapid.
The closing of the river by ice from time to time during the winter season, extending over four
The general inconvenience of the situation for import and export to and from foreign markets and
the limited and uncertain nature of the mere local demand.
Accordingly, in no spirit of rivalry to .the sister Colony, but with the clearly-defined purpose of fostering her advancement as the best means of promoting their own, the merchants, without an exception
settled down m Victoria, and under a free trade policy assisted to build it up to its present flourishing
condition, investing considerable sums of money in permanent improvements, and in the establishment
of business connexions, under the belief that the relative positions of the Colonies would remain
without material alteration.
It was hoped they would still work harmoniously together, aud that Vancouver Island in maintaining
her independence, and with it her free trade, would find in British Columbia her best customer and her
staunchest supporter; and on these grounds the members of the Chambers of Commerce of Victoria
Vancouver Island, declined to touch upon umon, as being more a political than a commercial question
Tiie.further reconstruction of British Columbia in 1863, and the arrival in 1864 of separate Governor
with distinct establishments for that Colony and for Vancouver Island, somewhat altered the relations
of separate Governors
w^v ra»u™u„.0uB iui iiioi vuiuuji o,uu xur Vancouver island, somewhat
jTi?i„?n   ™I threatens seriously to imperil the mutually beneficial relations hitherto
between them which would directly tend to destroy the good effect already springing from the fref
trade policy of Vancouver Island, and would build up rival towns on the adjacent American territorv S
the sacrifice of British interest in the North Pa,rifm.       1 J American territory to
The m
interest in the North Pacific.
embers of the Chamber of Commerce of Victoria, Vancouver Island, view with surprise and
passing of enactments by the Legislative Council of British Columbia intentionally
ughout that Colony.  ";;;,,: ll"!iil|,mft ^-'-'ii OF BRITISH COLUMBIA AND VANCOUVER ISLAND.
The annexed tariff recently passed by the Legislative Council of British Columbia, and put into
operation the same day, without any notice to the mercantile community, most clearly indicates a desire
to sacrifice the material interest of the Colony of British Columbia at large, provided that in so doing
a blow is aimed that will elevate New Westminster at the expense of Victoria.
It is certain that the miners, traders, and packers of British Columbia, who are chiefly affected by this
measure, are not sharers in the feeling of opposition against Vancouver Island prevalent at New Westminster ; suchof themas were in "Victoria have already given expression to their views at a public meeting, and petitions are in active circulation against it.
going and returning 70 miles each way, as the inner passage by Johnson's Strait is only available for smaii
vessels or steamers), for the simple purpose of entering and clearing, instead of being allowed as heretofore to clear from Victoria.
It frequently happens that sailing vessels, so bound, are unable, from ice in winter, and from freshets
in summer, to reach New Westminster at all. A case recently occurred, as set forth in the declarations
in the appendix, in which a schooner bound for Queen Charlotte Island with supplies for some miners
supposed to be short of provisions, could not enter the Fraser owing to the ice. She went round to
Burrard Inlet, from whence New Westminster has constantly received supplies when the river was closed,
a distance of seven miles overland from New Westminster, was refused a clearance, unless she came to
New Westminster, and ultimately returned to Victoria; in this particular instance the action of the
authorities may prove to have been fatal to life.
From such ill-advised legislation most serious issues must spring, and it is the deliberately expressed
opinion of this Chamber that the paramount interest of the Imperial Government in the North Pacific
will be seriously jeopardised by it.
The want of concord between two Colonies in such close proximity, whose limited populations are
mutually dependent on each other, can only result in access of strength to our American neighbour at
the expense of British influence in a quarter of the world where it is needless to state that influence ought
to be fostered to the utmost.
Finally, as bearing on the question of union with British Columbia, public opinion in opposition to
the views of this Chamber, seems to-be wavering and unstable on the question of free trade, and it is
obvious that unless that policy is adhered to, the natural advantages of Vancouver Island can only be
made available by the. establishment of perfect harmony and union of interest between it and British
In view of which, and regarding the general progress of the two Colonies as far above mere local considerations, the members of the Chamber of Commerce of Victoria, Vancouver Island, can only see in
equitable union a practical solution of existing difficulties, and while feeling that Victoria as a free port
depdt, established with so much forethought and maintained at such cost, to the substantial benefit of
British Columbia as well as of Vancouver Island, may be weakened for a time, they are content to leave
the solution of the whole question to the wisdom of Her Majesty's Government, feeling sure that the
true interest of all parties will be carefully estimated and provided for.
Adopted unanimously at a general meeting of the Chamber of Commerce held the sixth day of March
1865. _______
Declaration of the President and Secretary of the Queen Charlotte Mining
Company, Limited.
1. The company have had men at the mines since June last whose time had expired. Some delay
had*already occurred in sending a.vessel with supplies for them. They were supposed to be nearly out
of provisions and clothing, and it was a matter of necessity, that a vessel should be sent to them.
2. We were present at a meeting of the board of directors held on 21st January, at which a resolution
was'passed authorizing the secretary "to contract with a vessel to go to the mines and bring back the
" men there, and all tools and moveable property of the company."
3. The schooner | Onward" was chartered for the purposes specified in the resolution on the 26th
January, and despatched the following day. j .
4. The schooner returned to this port on or about the 7th February, in consequence ot being refused
a clearance at the custom-house at New Westminster.
5. The delay in sending a vessel may be fatal to the men, and is extremely detrimental to the
interests of the company. # .
6. The- provisions shipped on board were intended for the use of the men returning, and the value ot
them was #64,90-100. . . . . .
7 And I Robert George, further declare that the paper writing marked "A is the original
memorandum of agreement made with Hugh McKay, the captain and owner of the British schooner
i Onward," and the paper writing marked " B " is the original receipt for all the goods shipped by the
Queen Charlotte Mining Company on board the said vessel. And we, Robert Burnaby and Robert
George, do solemnly and sincerely declare that the above-mentioned statement is true- and correct, and
we make this declaration conscientiously believing the same to be true.
Robert Burnaby,
President, Queen Charlotte Mining Company, Limited.
Robert George,
Secretary, Queen Charlotte Mining Company, Limited.
Declared before me at Victoria, Vancouver Island, this eighth day of March, A.D. I860, in due
form of law.
Quod attestor.
\ M. W. Tyrwhitt Drake,
Notary Public.
c 16
This agreement, made this 26th day of January 1865, by and between Hugh McKay, master and
owner ofthe schooner "Onward," ofthe first part, and the Queen Charlotte Mining Company, Limited,
ofthe second part, witnesseth that for and in consideration of the sum of #225 agreed to be paid by tne
party of the second part on the completion of this agreement, the party of the first part will proceed
without delay to the Company's mines at Sockalu Harbour, Queen Charlotte Island, and will remain
there long enough to take on board and will take on board the men to the number of at least three, now
or then at the mines, and also all and any material, tools, stores, or other articles belonging to the
Company, which the foreman of the Company may direct, and bring the same with as little delay as
possible to the port of Victoria and alongside a convenient wharf at said port, and deliver the same to
the said party of the second part, or their agents or assigns. And the said party of the second part agrees
to pay the said sum of #225 on the delivery of the said material, tools, stores, and articles, and landing
of said men.
Dated in Victoria, Vancouver Island, this 26th January 1865. Hugh McKay.
James Duncan,
Witness. For the Queen Charlotte Mining Company, Limited,
R. Georg.e, Secretary.
This is the document marked A. referred to in the annexed declaration, dated 8th March 1865.
M. W. Tyrwhitt Drake, Notary Public.
Victoria, Vancouver Island, January 26, *.vk,u.
Shipped in good order by Sporburg and Reuff, on board the " Onward," whereof McKay is master,
and bound for Q. C. M. Co., the following packages (the dangers of fire and navigation excepted) consigned to Q. C. M. Co., of Q. C. Island, and marked Q. C. M.
One Bhl. Flour.
One Sk. Beans.
One Bhl. Molasses.
One Sk. Potatoes.
This is the document marked B. referred to
Robert George, dated 8th March 1865.
One Pn. Bacon.
One. Pkg. Sundries.
Two Boxes Bread.
the annexed declaration of Robert Burnaby and
M. W. Tyrwhitt Drake.
Notary Public.
To all to whom these Presents shall come,—
I, Montague William Tyrwhitt Drake, Notary Public, duly authorized, admitted, and sworn,
residing and practising in Victoria, Vancouver Island, do hereby certify that Hugh McKay, personally
known to me, appeared before me and signed the declaration hereto annexed, in due form of law, and
that the name " Hugh McKay" thereto subscribed is of the proper handwriting of the said Hugh
In faith and testimony whereof, I, the said notary, have hereunto set my name
and affixed my seal of office.
/     \     Dated in Victoria aforesaid, the twenty-first
/ Seal# \ day of February, A.D. 1865.
\ J M. W. Tyrwhitt Drake, Notary Public.
Declaration of Hugh McKay, Master and Owner of the British Schooner | Onward,"
of Victoria, Vancouver Island.
I am master and owner of the British schooner " Onward."
I made a written agreement on the 26th January last, with the Queen Charlotte Mining Company
Limited, to go to their mines at Queen Charlotte Island, and bring thence to Victoria (3) three men and
the material left there.
I took on board goods to the value of #160, all of which were " stores," except two bhls. molasses
and five boxes bread, of the value of about ($57.00) 57 dollars.
I sailed and reached the entrance of Fraser River and attempted to get up to New Westminster to
clear my goods, but found so much float ice coming down the river, that I did not dare to risk my
vessel against it. J
I went out of the river and round to Burrard's Inlet, to which place vessels customarily go in the
winter, when they cannot reach New Westminster by the river.
From my anchorage there I sent over my manifest and clearance, and money to pay duties.
The custom-house officer asked if those (on the manifest) were all the goods on board. My messenger replied all, except "grub," but they could send an officer over and examine. He was then told to
bring over a list of everything on board.
He returned to the vessel, and I made out a list of all the stores and everything I had on board even
to a bottle of pepper, and sent the man back with it, telling him if they would not send an officer over
and clear me for the north, then to get a clearance back to Victoria. Upon his arrival with this list,
after some debate about sending an officer over, they finally said that they could not clear any vessel for
the north, except the vessel herself was brought to New Westminster.
After much difficulty they gave me a clearance for Victoria.
I lost; 10 days in the trip and the contract with the Queen Charlotte Mining Company
the anchorage to New Westminster my man had to go eight miles in a canoe, and then six
o    i  ;( trail through mud and ice, and this back and forth four times
j    i      ,- •"   ■      !,,.''•   " """  """'  """   """■■-     And  I  make this solemn
declaration conscientiously behevmg the same to be true, and by virtue of the provisions of an Act
made and passed in the sixth year of the reign  of His late Majesty King William the  Foufth
intituled An Act to amend an Act of the present session of Parliament, entitled St Act for the
more effectual abolition of oaths and affirmations taken and made in various departments ofthe
State, and to substitute declarations in lieu thereof, and for the more entire suppression of voluntary
and extra-judicial oaths and affidavits, and to make other provisions for the.abolition of unnecessary
-r^   ,      , •    ,     i        f\       , • Hugh McKay.
Declared in due form of law, this 21st day of February, A.D. 1865,
before me,
M. W. Tyrwhitt Drake, Notary Public.
British Columbia.
V. R.
3.—An Ordinance to amend the Duties of Customs.
[15th February 1865.]
Whereas it is expedient in some respects to alter the duties of customs as now by law established
in British Columbia, and to make further provision for the levying thereof.
Be it enacted by the Governor of British Columbia, by and with the advice and consent of the Legislative Council thereof, as follows:
I. From and after the passing of this Ordinance, the duties of customs hitherto chargeable on goods,
animals, and articles imported into and landed in British Columbia, shall be and are hereby repealed.
II. In lieu thereof, from and after the passing of this Ordinance, there shall be levied, assessed,
collected, and paid to the Use of Her Majesty, Her heirs and successors :
a. Upon all goods, wares, merchandise, animals, and things imported into and landed in British
.Columbia, and more particularly mentioned in Schedule A. hereto, and according to the value
thereof, the several ad valorem duties in such Schedule set opposite the respective articles
therein named.
b. And (in addition to the ad valorem duties leviable on certain of the same articles) upon all goods,
wares, merchandise, animals, and things imported into and landed in British Columbia, the
several specific duties of customs more particularly mentioned in Schedule B. hereto, and set
opposite the respective articles therein named.
c. And so long as the Proclamation made and passed on the 10th day of December, A.D. 1859, is in
force, and the dues thereby leviable shall be levied upon wares, goods and merchandise transported from New Westminster to any place in British Columbia, there shall be so levied,
collected, and paid as aforesaid upon every ton of wares, goods, and merchandise imported into
the Colony by way of the Southern Boundary, the sum of twelve shillings, and so on for a
greater or less quantity ; and on cattle, horses, mules, and asses so imported by way of the
Southern Boundary, the sum of two shillings and one penny per head beyond the specific duties
charged on animals, in Schedule B. hereto.
d. The articles mentioned in Schedule C. hereto shall be admitted into British Columbia free of
III. With the bill of entry of any goods, there shall be produced to the collector of customs an
invoice of the goods, and the bill of entry shall also contain a statement of the value for duty of the
goods therein mentioned, and shall be signed by the person making the entry, and verified if required
by his declaration to the truth thereof, and no entry shall be deemed perfect unless a sufficient invoice of
the goods to be entered has been produced to the collector.
IV. If any person passes or attempts to pass through the custom-house any false or fraudulent
invoice, or makes out or passes, or attempts to pass a bill of entry of any goods at a value below the
fair market value ofsuch goods in the country from'which such goods were last directly shipped or
exported, or in any way, by under-valuation or otherwise, attempts to defraud the revenue of any part
of the duty on any goods or things liable thereto, every such person shall on conviction (in addition
to any other penalty or forfeiture to which he may be subject for such offence) be liable to a penalty
not exceeding 100/., and the goods so undervalued shall be and be taken and deemed to be forfeited.
V. And inasmuch as it is expedient to make such provisions for the valuation of goods subject to ad
valorem duties, as may protect the revenue and the fair trader against fraud by the undervaluation of
any such goods, therefore the Governor may from time to time, and when he deems it expedient, appoint
fit and proper persons to be appraisers of goods at the port of entry, and every such appraiser shall
before acting as such take and subscribe the following oath of office before some justice of the peace
for this Colony, and deliver the same to. the collector.    Every such appraisement shall be final.
I, A. B., having been appointed an appraiser of goods, wares, and merchandise, and to act as such at
the port of (or as the case may be), do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully perform the
duties of the said office, without partiality, fear, favour, or affection, and that I will appraise the value
of all goods submitted to my appraisement, according to the true intent and meaning of the laws imposing duties of customs in this Colony; and that I will use my best endeavours to prevent all fraud, subterfuge, or evasion of the said laws, and more especially to detect, expose, and frustrate all attempts to
undervalue any goods, wares, or merchandise on which any duty is chargeable.    So help me God.
A. B.
Appraiser for (as the case may be).
Sworn before me, this day of 186
E. F.
J. P. for (as the case may be).
VL If no appraiser is appointed to any port of entry, the collector there shall act as_ appraiser, but
without taking any special oath of office as such; and the Governor may at any time direct any
appraiser to attend at any port or place, for the purpose of valuing any goods, or of acting as appraiser
there during any time, which such appraiser shall accordingly do without taking any new oath of office,
and every appraiser shall be deemed an officer of the customs.
C 2
Former duties
To be substituted.
Ad valorem
duties in Sohe-
dule A.
And specific
duties in Schedule B.
Tonnage dues
on imports by
Free list in
Schedule C.
Invoice to be
Penalties for
how appointed.
Oath to be
taken by appraiser.
Collector when
to act as
appraiser. raw^s
Value of goods
to be fair
market value.
Duties to be
collected as
Penalties for
Short Title
VII. In all cases where any duty is imposed on any goods or things imported into this Colony according to the value of such goods, such value shall be understood to be the fair market value thereof in the
principal markets of the country whence the same were last shipped or exported direct to this Colony,
and the collector and appraiser shall, by all reasonable ways and means in their power, ascertain the fair
value of such goods as aforesaid, and estimate the value for duty accordingly.
VIII. The duties hereby imposed shall be deemed to be customs duties, in all respects subject to
the Customs Consolidation Act, 1853, the Supplemental Customs Consolidation Act, 1855, and this
Ordinance; and shall be under the care of the collector of customs for the time being
for the Colony, who by himself and his officers shall have all the powers and authorities for the collection, recovery, and management thereof, as are under or by virtue of the said Customs Consolidation
Acts, or either of them, or this or any other Act, Ordinance, or Proclamation, vested in the said
collector for the collection, recovery, and management of duties of customs, and all other powers and
authorities requisite for levying the said duties.
IX. Every evasion, or attempt at evasion of, or offence committed by any person or persons to defeat
the payment of any of the duties hereby made payable on any goods or things imported into British
Columbia (which shall include its dependencies) will, in addition to the penalties by this Ordinance
imposed, be prosecuted and punished in the manner prescribed by the said Customs Consolidation
X. This Ordinance shall be cited as "The Customs Amendment Ordinance, 1865."
Passed the Legislative Council this 15th day of February, A.D. 1865.
Charles Good, Arthuh N. Birch,
Clerk. Presiding Member.
Assented to, in Her Majesty's name, this Fifteenth day of February 1865.
Federick Seymour,
Ad valorem Custo
Everything not enumerated under Schedules A., B., and
Ale and Porter -        - 20 j
Axes        -        -        - 121
Bacon      -        -        - 15
Barley     -        -        - 12*
Beans - 20
Beef (salt)        -        - 121
Billiard and Bagatelle
tables  -        -        - 12*
Bitters - 40
Blankets -        -        - 20
Boots and Shoes       - 15
Bread      -        -        - 15
Bricks     -        -        - 12*
Butter     -        -        - 15
Candles    -        -        - 20
Camphene         -        -12*
Cheese    -        -        - 15
Chocolate -        - 121
Cider        -        -        - 12*
Clothing -        -        - 15
Coffee, green    -        - 15
. Do.  manufactured 20
Confectioneiy   - 1 £1
Cordials   -   '    -        - 12*
Drugs and Chemicals 20"
Dried Fish        -        - 30
Dry Goods       -        - 15
r cent.
Fish (preserved)
Fire Arms
Flour       -
Fruits (preserved)
Furniture   (excepting
that as provided for
in Schedule C.)     -
Glass and Glassware -
Groceries (not other
wise provided for) -
Hardware  and  Iron
Harness and Saddlery
Iron and Steel -
Leather    -
Lime        -
Meat (preserved)
Molasses -        -        -
Nuts and Almonds   -
Opium     -
C, s
be subject to a duty
of 12* pei
r c^nft
12* per cent.
Potatoes   -
12* per cent
Pork (salt)
Rope and Cordage
Tar and Pitch -
Tin and Tinware
Tobacco  -
J. — o
Do.     (preserved)
Waggons -
Wheat      -
Window  Sashes   ;
Doors -
Wine, Champagne
„     Claret
„     Various -
Yeast Powders -
Playing Cards
1 w 0
Ad valorem and Specifk
Spirits and Distilled Liquors of all kinds,
for eveiy gallon imperial measure, of
full strength or less than full strength
of proof by Syke's hydrometer -
And so on in proportion for any greater
strength than proof.
And on the value thereof at the place
from whence last imported
Chinese Medicated Wine   and  Spirits,
per gall
20 per cent.
And on the value thereof at the place
from whence last imported        -        -    20 per cent.
Cigars and Cheroots, per 100        -        -    4s. 2d.
And on the value thereof at the place
from whence last imported        -       -20 per cent.
Bulls,   Cows,   Calves,   Oxen,   Horses,
Asses, and Mules, per head      -       -    4s. 2d.
Sheep, Goats, and Hogs, per head        -    2s. Id. OF BRITISH COLUMBIA AND VANCOUVER ISLAND.
Articles free of Duty.
All materials required for ship or boatbuilding, all kinds of Machinery, Pig Iron, Agricultural Implements, Coin,
Fresh Fish, Fruit, Poultry alive or dead, Seeds and bulbs and roots of plants to be used in agriculture and not as
food, Coals, Eggs, Hay, Salt, Lumber, empty Gunny Sacks, Printed and Manuscript Books and Papers, Baggage
and Apparel, Household Furniture which has been in use, belonging to and arriving with bona fide immigrants,
and professional apparatus of passengers. And also all goods, animals, and articles whatsoever, imported for the
public service, or uses of the Colony of British Columbia, or for the use of Her Majesty's Land or Sea Forces,
or of any person holding any command or appointment in Her Majesty's Forces aforesaid: Provided always
that all articles so excepted from duty as above mentioned, are the property of passengers and officers, for use,
and not for making a profit by the sale thereof.
No. 8.
Extract from a DESPATCH from Governor Kennedy, C.B., to the Right Hon.
Edward Cardwell, M.P.
(No. 16.) Victoria, March 21, 1865.
(Received May 15, 1865.)
I have deferred replying to that part of your Despatch No. 2,* dated 30th
April, 1864, on the proposed union of Vancouver Island with British Columbia, until I
could report some definite action of the Legislature of this Colony on the subject.
After various abortive proceedings (the details of which I need not trouble you
with) the resolutions communicated in my Despatch No. 14f of this date were adopted by
the Legislative Assembly on the 27th January 1865.
These resolutions, coupled with those of the Chamber of Commerce, transmitted in
my Despatch No. 15, J also of this date, will enable you to judge of the public feeling on
the subject.
I took an early opportunity, after the expression of opinion by the Legislative
Assembly, to have a personal consultation with Governor Seymour    * * *
A year's experience and close observation in this Colony have led me to adopt a
very decided opinion of the expediency—I might almost say necessity (for to that I think
it must come)—of uniting British Columbia and Vancouver Island under one Governor,
one Legislature, and equal laws.
The proposal of my predecessor, adverted to in your Despatch, that there should be
one Governor, 1 that the Colonies should each have its separate Legislature, make its
." own laws, raise and apply its own revenue, as at present, for its   individual benefit,"
seems to me to be surrounded by difficulties, and fraught with the elements of dissolution
and discord.
The difficulty of one Governor administering two neighbouring Governments, conducted upon different and antagonistic commercial principles, as they exist at present,
seems to me insuperable.
If these Colonies progress  (as it is hoped), the ports of one being free and the other -
levying import duties, it would ultimately require a large portion of the revenue of the
one to suppress smuggling from the other, a fact well illustrated by the contraband trade
at present carried on with Vancouver Island and the  neighbouring  American territory,
between which similar conditions at present exist.
As regards the control and management of the Indian population (which is a most
important subject of consideration), who migrate between the two Qolonies, the necessity
of uniform legislation and policy are, I think, self-evident.
A uniform postal system, and all other subjects on which united action are
necessary, could hardly be carried out,  or at best would be weakened by separate
The population of each Colony is and will long continue to be too small for healthy
political action.
All the advantages derivable from mutual aid and co-operation would be lost, and
a bitter and senseless rivalry (as at present growing up) engendered in their stead,
I think it would be difficult to find two Colonies or communities who are so necessarily dependent on each other for progress and support.
The readiness of the Legislative Assembly of this Colony to abandon the free
port of Victoria at once removes the only serious difficulty which has hitherto beset
this question, a course of action approved of by an overwhelming majority of then-
constituents. .       . n i    -        ir   j
The separate existence and possibly hostile legislation of these Colonies affords a
"No. 8.
Page 5.
Page 6.
t Page 13. 20
British    bad public example, and must continue to be an increasing embarrassment to Her
Columbia   Majesty's Government. n    ■,   . t    ^ ■, •   ^ I    e
AND I will not enter upon the question of relative gain of each Colony in the event ot
j Vancouver union beyond expressing my opinion that the resources of this Colony, by means of direct
Island.     faxati'on alone5 are amp]e to defray the expenses of Government, with the maintenance, if
necessary, of its free port; and that its financial condition on the whole is  quite as
satisfactory as that of British Columbia. ' *
The form of Government under which these united Colonies could be most easily and
successfully governed is an important subject for consideration.
The form of Government at present existing in this Colony, namely, an Elective
Assembly of 15 Members, and a nominated Legislative Council, does not, and in my opinion
never can work satisfactorily. There is no medium or connecting link between the
Governor and the Assembly, and the time of the Legislative Council (which comprises the
principal executive officers) is mainly occupied in the correction of mistakes, or undoing
the Crude legislation of the Lower House,, who have not and cannot be expected to have
the practical experience or available time necessary for the successful conduct of public
affairs.     On financial subjects they are always greatly at fault.
I would therefore recommend (should the opportunity for remodelling the form of
Government occur) that there should be one Chamber only, composed of elective Members,
as at present, with the addition of nominees of the Crown in the proportion of one third,
with power to resolve itself into two separate Chambers, when the state of the population
would justify or render it necessary, a contingency which is, I think, far distant.
I believe that this change would find favour with the intelligent portion of the
public, and a large number, if not a majority, of the present Assembly, whose constitution
it would affect.
I have abstained from expressing any public opinion, or exercising any influence I
may possess, in encouraging this movement, but I have no doubt that the expression of
the former and legitimate use ofthe latter, if acquiesced in by Governor Seymour, would
immediately remove all serious opposition to a union of these Colonies, which I consider
a matter.of great imperial, as well as colonial interest.
No. 9.
No. 9.
Copy of a DESPATCH from Governor Seymour to the Right Hon.
Edward Cardwell, M.P.
(No. 30.)
New Westminster, March 21, 1865.
(Received, June 29, 1865.)
I have the honour to forward a printed Paper of which I have become accidentally
possessed, containing certain resolutions passed and statements made by the Chamber of
Commerce at Victoria.
2. You will observe that these resolutions and statements, which attribute somewhat
unworthy motives to the Government of this Colony, were transmitted to you before I
became officially aware of their existence. I feel that. I should be neglecting my duty to Her
Majesty's Government and to British Columbia were I to pass unnoticed statements emanating from a respectable source, and which have been published with something approaching to accuracy in the daily periodicals of the neighbouring Colony. Of the resolutions
had they been unsupported by the statements, I should not have had to complain They
are the expression of the opinion of a beaten party. You are aware that the candidates on
the Tree Port side were rejected at the last Victoria elections. The beaten party have
however, the support of the people of Vancouver, in so far as they advocate a union with
this Colony. With us, the Legislative Council has on more than one occasion unanimously protested against the proposed connexion.
3. I will pass over the earlier portions of the statements, but must pause when I reach
the assertion that Victoria_I have no word to say against Esquimalt—possesses « a
capacious and convenient harbour, approachable at all times, by night or dav for «p»
.JZl±^tZeZ^H1^   ^Sl P0i^ to ^e lighest authority I
can procure, that of Captain Richards,   R.N., the present Hydrographer to
uu.^,^^ ydpwtunxicnaras,, tne present Hydrographer to the  Navv
his sailing  directions for Vancouver Island, page 20,  I find,   1 The entrance tc
victoria Harbour is shoal, narrow, and intricate, and with S.W. or S.E. gales a heavy
rolling swell sets on the coast, which render's the
vessels of burthen cannot run in for shelter unless at
outside unsafe, while
or near high water. Vessels
drawing 14 or 15 feet may, under ordinary circumstances, enter at such times of tide,
and ships drawing 17 feet of water have entered, though only at the top of spring
tides." Captain Richards proceeds to state that in the harbour " the space is so
confined and tortuous, that a long ship has great difficulty in making the necessary
turn; a large per-centage of vessels entering the port, small as well as large, constantly run aground from these causes." Further on, $ it appears not a little remarkable that, with the excellent harbour of Esquimalt within two miles, Victoria should
have been continued as the commercial port of a rising Colony, whose interests cannot
I but suffer materially from the risks and delays which shipping must encounter in
" approaching the commercial capital." He concludes his notice of the harbour, while
allowing that Victoria suited the former wants of the Hudson's Bay Company, " it has
| been a fatal mistake at a later date not to have adopted Esquimalt as the commercial
4. I will add my own personal testimony, though entirely unnecessary, to that of
Captain Richards. After threading in safety by the chart and compass on a dark night
the narrow channels among the islands of the Gulf of Georgia, I have found myself
scarcely able to determine which of the indentations of the coast was the Harbour of
Victoria. No light of any kind marks its entrance, and in a small steamer, drawing but
3 feet 6 inches, we have shared the fate of the " large per-centage of vessels, small as
" well as large," and run aground.
5. I wish to dispose of the questions relating to natural features, raised by the
Chamber of Commerce, before following their arguments into political matters. Having
thus lauded the harbour of Victoria, they proceed to deal in a less generous manner with
Fraser River.    The statements assert that the " intricate, narrow, and uncertain channel
through the sand heads at the mouth of the Fraser is available only for ships drawing
16 feet of water at the utmost, and then requiring the assistance of steam." They go
on to speak of the " subsequent danger and delay attending river navigation to New
" Westminster, the currents during the summer's freshets being very rapid." Either the
Chamber of Commerce of Victoria or the Hydrographer of the Navy is very much
mistaken. I beg leave to refer to page 97 of the book already quoted : | Fraser River,
| in point of magnitude and present commercial importance, is second only to the
Columbia on the North-west Coast of America. In its entire freedom from risk of
life and shipwreck, it possesses infinite advantages over any other river on the coast,
| and the cause of this immunity from the dangers and inconveniences to which all great
" rivers emptying themselves on an exposed coast are subject is sufficiently obvious."
Captain Richards then alludes to the " fixed and unvarying character of the shoals
1 through which this magnificent stream pursues its undevious course into the Gulf of
Georgia; and there can be little doubt that it is destined at no distant period to fulfil
to the utmost, as it is already partially fulfilling, the purposes for which nature meant
it—the outlet for the products of a great country." In descending the stream on
reaching Langley, 12 miles above New Westminster, Captain Richards finds that | the
" river becomes a broad, deep, and placid" stream, and, except during the three summer
I months, the influence of the flood stream is generally felt, and vessels of any draught
" may conveniently anchor. The depth is ten fathoms; the current not above three
" knots. Vessels of from 18 to 20 feet draught may enter the Fraser, and proceed as
1 high as Langley, or a few miles above it, with ease, provided they have or are assisted
| by steam power. The only difficulty is at the entrance, and that is easily overcome
I by providing pilots and the means of maintaining the buoys in their position." The
Chamber of Commerce speaks of the " intricate, narrow, and uncertain" entrance. I
have already quoted Captain Richard's expression of " undevious." He adds later, | that
" the stream has forced an almost straight though narrow passage." I may strengthen
the refutation of the alleged " uncertainty" of the entrance. I had the channel
recently re-surveyed by Mr. Pender, R.N., charged with the Admiralty survey of this
coast. He found that it had sustained scarcely any appreciable change since the passage
was first marked out on the settlement ofthe Colony.
6. The statements made by the Chamber of Commerce, on matters susceptiole of
proof are somewhat remarkable. I hardly assume, in a body professing to represent the
commercial capital and intelligence of the two Colonies, an ignorance of a book oi
sailing directions for their coasts, " published," as the title page would show them, " by
1 Order of the Lords Commissioners of the Admiralty." If Captain Richards is m error,
and his sailing directions calculated to lead ships into danger, his statements ought^ m
the interest of commerce, to have been boldly  met.     But he has  been  left
aside 22
unnoticed, and assertions directly opposed to those made public by the Admiralty have
been officially forwarded to you. jj
Although my own considerable yachting experience  has led me to rely witn ttie
the directions  of the Hydrographer of the Navy, the enclosed letters from Vice-
miral Kingcome, lately ' Commander-in-Chief of the Pacific Squadron, and Captain
Admiral Kingcome, lately
Lord Gilford, commanding Her Majesty's ship "Tribune,   authorities worthy surely of
weight with the Victoria Chamber of Commerce.     These letters were published  m
the official Gazette of this Colony.
8. Admiral Kingcome notices that the arrival of Her Majestys ship "Tribune,
drawing 19 feet 6, inches, opposite this town, most "conclusively proves "that direct
" communication with New Westminster can be carried on by ocean ships of large
" tonnage." He says further, " the approach to the entrance of Fraser River possesses
I many advantages over that of the Thames. In the first place, the water is much
" smoother, and it is not exposed to any sea such as that raised in the North sea by
" easterly gales, which, in many instances, has caused the loss of ships. Secondly, there
" are no outlying sands, and the channel is not near so tortuous, and marks can be
" placed on the land, which in the Thames is nearly impossible. Thirdly, the weather
" is much clearer, and the position of a ship more easily fixed." "Fourthly, the anchorage
" in English Bay is far preferable to that in the Downs. In both rivers ships must wait
I for the tides, and with the same or even half the precautions in the Fraser that are
" used in the Thames a perfect stranger would have noj difficulty in taking ships
I drawing 19 or 20 feet to New Westminster."
9. In leaving the river, the "Tribune" unfortunately grounded. Lord Gilford, in
showing that the accident was caused by the dull white colour of a pole which marks
the Channel, reports to the Commander-in-Chief on the station : " I deem it my duty
" to state that, notwithstanding Her Majesty's ship under my.command having taken
" the ground on her outward passage, I am of opinion that vessels drawing from 18 to
" 20 feet could enter the Fraser in perfect safety, provided the channel be properly
I buoyed with marks which can be seen at a reasonable distance." The Chamber of
Commerce is aware that great improvements have, since Lord Gilford wrote, been made
in marking the Channel; that iron buoys have been ordered out from England, and
tenders are invited, not only in our local papers, but in those of Victoria, for the
construction of a light-ship for the mouth of the Fraser.
10. I admit that Esquimalt possesses all the advantages ascribed to it jointly with
Victoria, but the " fatal" mistake alluded to by Captain Richards now causes irritation
and inconvenience in both Colonies. I can see no objection to merchandise destined for
us being transhipped in Esquimalt, but I do object to the present system under which
our traffic is artificially conducted up the narrow and tortuous harbour of Victoria,
causing a great loss of time and increase of expense. I have no certain information as
to the amount of delay, but I believe that a fortnight to three weeks elapses after the
arrival of a ship in Esquimalt harbour before any portion of her cargo reaches New
11. The 12th paragraph states that under a former rule the advancement of each
Colony was regarded as the benefit of the other. Unquestionably, even now, the legitimate advancement of each Colony is regarded as the benefit of the other.
12. I am in ignorance of the motives which induced Her Majesty's Government to
make two Colonies of the British possessions to the westward of the Rocky Mountains,
to lay out the plan of a city of vast dimensions near the mouth of the Fraser, and
to sell the lots on the faith that on them would stand the future capital of B'ritish
Columbia. If the mainland was to continue to be the dependency of an outlying
island, no second capital was required, and steps ought boldly to have been taken, regardless of the private interests of the Hudson's Bay traders and others, to erect a great
commercial town on the fine harbour of Esquimalt. Unquestionably, under the rule of
my predecessor, Victoria became the principal English port on this coast, and New Westminster commenced a retrograde course early in its history. It could hardly have
been otherwise. The Governor and other public officers drew their full salaries from
British Columbia and resided in Vancouver Island. Victoria escaped all indirect taxation
while heavy duties were collected on all articles consumed on the mainland. The
Hudson's Bay Company ran their steam vessels to the Fraser to connect with the river
steamers, and draw down to the seat of government and of commerce the miners immediately on their arrival from the gold fields.    The San Francisco steamers called at OF BRITISH COLUMBIA AND VANCOUVER ISLAND.
Esquimalt only, and thus passengers for California had no inducement of any kind to
remain even a few hours, voluntarily, in this Colony. While waiting for the steamers the
miners spent their money in Victoria, and thus billiard rooms and drinking saloons arose,
and the place acquired sufficient importance to depopulate New Westminster without
attaining any solid foundation or considerable prosperity for itself. The Chamber of
Commerce speaks of the trade with China, the Sandwich Islands, Russian America, and
other places. How, if this be important, is it that the prospect of a portion of the
traffic of British Columbia.^ taking the short and undevious route by the Fraser, shakes
the Whole of Victorian society to its foundations, and causes a state of political ferment
such as the island had never seen ? Victoria did not attain any solid prosperity while
having her interests set above those of this Colony and of the whole of Vancouver
Island not included in her town lots.    Let me state how British Columbia fared.
13. I had not seen even in the West Indies so melancholy a picture of disappointed
hopes as New Westminster presented on my arrival. Here, however, there was a display
of energy wanting in the tropics, and thousands of trees of the largest dimensions had
been felled to make way for the great city expected to rise on the magnificent
site selected for it. But the blight had early come. Many of the best houses were
untenanted. The largest hotel was to let, decay appeared on all sides, and the
stumps and logs of the fallen trees blocked up most of the streets. Westminster appeared,
to use the miners' expression, 1 played out."
14. But it would have been urged, before the late excitement in Victoria, that the two
Colonies prospered, and that, therefore, it mattered but slightly if those who bought
land in New Westminster were losers by the speculation. It is not for me to report on
the condition of Vancouver Island, but 1 have to state that British Columbia did not
prosper. You are aware of the passionate appeals for separation which came from this
Colony. The revenue of 1864 fell short of the estimate by 15,000/., and, but for the accidental discovery of gold on the Kootenay, at the close ofthe year, the receipts would have
shown a deficiency of 21,000?. on the estimated revenue. At the time of my taking over
the government there was a local debt of 53,858/., in addition to that incurred in England,
composed chiefly of Road Bonds and an overdrawn account at the Bank of British
Columbia. The miners were not prosperous, and the labourers in Cariboo had diminished
-in number. What class was then thriving ? Merchants there are but few. The Chamber of Commerce states (para. 22) that there is not at this moment a single importing
mercantile establishment throughout the Colony. Yet the number of traders who have
taken advantage of the Insolvent Debtors Act was one-third greater in 1864 than in
1863. Perhaps, however, the country gentlemen who had introduced large, capital and
acquired land at a low price were the class who flourished while other interests drooped.
Not so, I regret to say. Prosperity has not yet favoured their meritorious labours. The
Legislative Council expressed a wish that some unpaid magistrates should be appointed.
I offered a commission to three of the principal country gentlemen; one accepted the
office; a second told me frankly he had sunk everything, and was on the brink of insolvency, unless further remittances arrived from England ; the third sent me in a statement
of his circumstances, showing that, if pressed by his creditors, he would be unable to
meet his liabilities.
15. This is the state upon which British Columbia entered the London market as an
applicant for a further loan of 100,000/. What security had it to offer ? The merchants
of Victoria were in no way liable ; the miners, owners of the most valuable claims, have
no habitation in the Colony. The statement respecting the importing merchants is not
wide of the truth. Our creditors have, therefore, but the hard pressed owners of the soil
to depend on.
16. It will hardly be cause for surprise if a document which deals loosely with facts
should exhibit carelessness when it comes to deal with motives. The Chamber of Commerce, without any communication with myself or the Legislature of this Colony, state
that our recent legislation has been "intentionally antagonistic to Victoria."
that town.
I enclose a copy of the
was adopted at a public meeting held in
which they originated and of my reply. The Legislative Council
weight to the signatures, that the petition was not even taken up by the House. My
answer will, I trust, dispose of the statements in the 23rd paragraph. As to the dissatisfaction supposed in the 24th to exist, I may at once say, that miners, like other men, are
not partial to taxation, but that, although they have been worked upon in every way by
the political agitators of Victoria, the only public manifestations of feeling which we have
seen recently were the receiving the steamer (which, I believe, brought up the petition) in
New Westminster with three groans for the Hudson's Bay Company, whose agents are
prominent among the agitators against recent legislation.    The last batch of miners on
D 24
landing here spontaneously gave three cheers for the Governor, whom, had they attended
to the directions of the Victoria press, they would have opposed by all means, fair or
unfair. Immediately after cheering the Governor, three cheers were given for Mr.
O'Reilly, the Gold Commissioner of Cariboo, who had, in the council, taken a prominent
part in recent legislation.
17. The 25th paragraph alludes'.to the circumstance of vessels having to clear at New
Westminster instead of Victoria for the north-west trade. I would, venture to call your
attention to the Duke of Newcastle's Despatch, No. 33, of 15th June I860, which states,
what the Chamber of Commerce is well aware of, that the collecting of duties at Victoria
on vessels bound for this Colony cannot be enforced. If the commerce of Vancouver
Island is put to inconvenience by coming up the Fraser, I can only say it is by the action
of my predecessor. His proclamation of Snd June 1859 declares New^ Westminster to be
the only port of entry in the Colony. I have induced the Legislative Council to give
me, by ordinance, the power of creating additional ports, and I shall avail myself of its
provisions in relief of the north-west trade.
18. You will observe in the 26th-paragraph a minute account of the inconvenience and
loss to which a vessel was exposed by having no alternative but to clear at New Westminster when the doing so became physically impossible on account of the ice on the
river. I send a statement of the case, made by th£ collector of customs at this port,
from which you will observe how widely inaccurate are the statements ofthe Chamber of
Commerce. Mr. Hamley also disproves all the assertions respecting the closing of the
river by ice for four months in the winter. Without further explanation let me simply
say that, during an official experience of upwards of 20 years, I have not met with a
series of statements so carelessly made by so respectable a body.
19- But I take this carelessness: or absence of candour as the most convincing proof of
the earnestness of the signers. There must be great feeling; respectable men must suffer
much before they allow themselves to deviate, however "slightly, from the strict paths of
truth. Doubtless, the old position of the merchants of Victoria, engrossing the whole
traffic of British Colombia without sharing in its burdens, was an enviable one, but the
larger Colony languished and grew weaker under the operation, and threatened to
deprive Victoria of its commerce by simply relapsing into wilderness. Let us hope
that a time will ere loog arrive, when, sharing equally in the public burdens, the
merchants of Victoria may derive a solid prosperity from the.increased vigour which a
respite from the exactions of absentee traders will give this Colony.
20. I enclose an article from the "North Paeific Times," of the 17th March, on the
subject of the resolutions and statements of the Chamber of Commerce.
I have, &c.
The Right Hon. Edward Cardwell, M.P.,        (Signed)    FREDERICK SEYMOUR.
&c. &c. &c.
Encl. I in No. 9.
Enclosure 1 in No. 9.
Colonial Secretary's Office, 8th June 1864.
The Governor has directed the publication of the following letter he has received from Vice-Admiral
Kingcome, Commander-in-Chief, respecting the navigation of Fraser River.    The suggestion containea
in the early part of Admiral Kingcome's letter will be carried out, and a light ship will, in addition, be
placed on the Sand Heads. Jjjcf
By command,
jj|i#; Arthur N. Birch.
Sir> . : . *§^ " Tribune," at New Westminster, 7th June 1864
I deem it right to bring under your notice that, in coming to this {place yesterday,-I did not find
any marks, except the ffljg outermost buoys, for the channel from the Sand Heads to New Westminster
and that it was only through the ability and intimate local knowledge of Mr. Titcomb, pilot, that the
" Tribune " was enabled to reach this port.
As it must be of vast importance to the future commercial prosperity of British Columbia that the
approach to New Westm&ster•should be made as easy of access and free from danger as possible, and
the presence of the « Tribune:' (dM 19 feet 6 inches) in these waters proving most conclusively that
direct communication with New Westminster can be carried on by ocean ships of large tonna-e I
would submit for your Excellency s consideration the expediency of having the channel carefullv
examined and marked out by large, spar buoys, distinguished by different colours, placed on the banks
or edge of the shoal water on each side, and securely moored with running chains, on the plan su&ested
by Captain Richards, late in charge of the Admiralty Survey of these coasts. The n«S of
the. channel and the shoalest water is abbuft midway between Garry Point and the Sand Heads, and
here I think two well-marked beacons should be placed on the landdh such a position that when in line
they would lead over that part of the bar where the deepest wateEigcte&e found.
With the aid of a powerful steam tug, ships can reach New Westminster with facility, for the
approach to the entrance ofthe Fraser River possesses many advantages over that of the Thames. In
the first place the water is much smoother, and it is not exposed to any sea such as.that raised in the
North Sea by easterly gales, and which, in many instances, has caused the loss of ships.
Secondly, there are no outlying sands, and the channel is not near so tortuous, and marks can be placed
on the land, which on the Thames is nearly impossible.
Thirdly, the weather is much clearer, and the position of a ship more easily fixed.
Foully, the anchorage in English Bay is far preferable to that in the Downs.
In both rivers ships must wait for the tides, ana with the same or even half the precautions in the
Fraser that are used in the Thames, a perfect stranger would have no difficulty in taking ships drawing
from 19 to 20 feet to New Westminster.
I have, &c.
(Signed) John Kingcome,
His Excellency Governor Seymour, Vice-Admiral, Commander4n-Chief.
■ '&e. &c. &c I
Sir, H.M. Ship | Tribune," Esquimalt, 13th July 1864.
With reference to your communications of the 7th and 9th June to his Excellency the Governor
of British Columbia, relative to the navigation of the entrance to the Fraser River, I deem it my duty
to state that, notwithstanding Her Majesty's ship under my command having taken the ground on her
outward passage, I am of opinion that vessels drawing from 18 to 20 feet could enter the Fraser in
perfect safety, provided the channel be properly buoyed with marks that can be seen at a reasonable
2. The | Tribune " took the ground because the inner buoy (which is a pole painted a dull whitish
colour, only showing 4 feet above water), could not be seen until after a careful search with a spyglass for 10 minutes, although only 600 yards distant when the ship struck; the next buoy (No. 4,
black and red), a mile further down the channel, being plainly in view at the time. The colour of the
water and the inner buoy were almost the same.
3. The Chart No. 1,922 was useless, and having no local knowledge, I could not judge by my distance
from Garry Point that I was running into danger.
I have, &c.
(Signed) Gileord, Captain.
The Grovernor
Victoria, praying
Enclosure 2 in No. 9.
Colonial Secretary's Office, 24th March 186^. '
directs the publication of a petition, with 321 signatures, forwarded to him from
for the amendment of the Customs Act of the present session, together with his
By command,
Arthur N. Birch.
Encl. 2 in No. 9.
To his Excellency Frederick Seymour, Governor of British Columbia, &c. &c.
The petition of the miners, traders, and others, citizens of British Columbia, now in Victoria, and
unanimously adopted at a public meeting held February 25th, 1865, j
Humbly sheweth:
Whereas our honourable Law makers have lately passed an Act increasing largely the duties on
imports into our Colony, and we, the miners, traders, and citizens of the Colony, who have all our
interests there, and a natural earnest desire to see it progress and prosper, deem it to be our privilege
as well as our duty to consider calmly, deliberately, and most respectfully this action, and to give the
full and honest expression of our views on the subject; therefore: -s^*)
I. Resolved, That in our judgment the Customs Amendment Ordinance, 1865, is an act of legislation which is inopportune, unwise, impolitic, unjust, and inequitable in its general provisions.
It is inopportune: .
1st. Because it largely increases the cost of living in the Colony at a time when the mining and
trading interests of the country can least afford to bear such an-increase. The past season was in every
sense an unprofitable one. The miner's labour was to a great extent spent in preparing for future
operations, and his profits were consequently small. The trader shared the small profits of the miner.
This has produced a general feeling of distrust and depression in the country. The increased taxation
only tends to add to this feeling, and thus deter both men and capital from going into the country,
w'&nd. Because a gold export tax of three per cent, has just been imposed en all treasure leaving the
Colony, which is in itself a heavy increase upon our former taxes. When to this is added .a high tariff
on all the necessaries of life, it becomes a burden from which men regarding their best interest will flee
when the first opportunity is offered.
It is unwise and impolitic: ft.      . .
1st. Because it will not increase the revenue of the Colony,    The great diminution in the amount ot
imports into the Colony caused by this tariff will diminish* the'aggregate revenue so much that there
will be a large deficit to be made up next year, when the mining population w$?-be so small under
operation of onerous taxes that it cannot ue collected.    No direct importations into the country
preveirt this result, even if such importations should enable traders to furmsh supplies at the same cost
that.they could.h&yfe done undefrifche oldatasiiE, v<$ JisoaiachiJ
D 2
..bS&iSJ .£...: 26
2nd. We believe there are rich deposits of gold in the wildest and most inhospitable portions of the
Colony. These gold fields are as yet unexplored and undiscovered; it will require men and capital combined to discover and develop them. In many instances large companies have been organized and other
preparations made to send capital into the country for this purpose. This tariff discourages and cripples
all such operations by an unfair increase upon all the articles and implements required for their work.
Prospecting in the Colony, upon which so much of our future success depends, is thus checked, it it is
not entirely prohibited. '. .       ,
3rd. There are hundreds of men in the Colony who have spent all their means and time d™g tae
past three or four years without success. Within the small distance of one and a half miles on Williams
Creek, six hundred thousand dollars have been thus spent. These men have experience "J the country,
they are not altogether discouraged, and they purpose to go again into the mines with the hope that
they will yet be able to get something in return for their lost labour and means. This tariff discourages
such men, and will force them to gather up their small earnings for the season and leave the country
for ever. .
4th. The small trader and packer, who has invested his means in provisions, and is now on his way
or about to start for the Colony, will be compelled to seek another market. - He cannot pay a double
tariff and compete with those traders now in the country. He will find a better and more profitable
market in the neighbouring gold fields of Washington and Idaho territories.
It is unjust and inequitable:
1st. Because the increase in the absolute necessaries of life far exceed that on the luxuries, thus
making the labourer in the country bear the main, if not the whole, burden of the taxation. As an
instance, the tariff on beans, one of the principal articles of consumption by the miner, is increased froin
3 to 20 per cent., while that on ale and porter is only increased from 10 to 40 per cent.; the tariff on
flour is increased more than threefold, while that on wines is only doubled.
2nd. The tariff is made to take effect at once, thus causing a sudden and quick rise in provisions in
the mines just as the season begins. By this means the miner will be forced to pay famine prices in
the spring, and perhaps be driven by necessity to leave the country before he has had a fair chance to
go to work profitably. A reasonable notice for the enforcement of such a measure is customary in
other countries, as it is equitable and fair.
II. Resolved, That in our opinion the idea that such a tariff will encourage direct importations to
the Colony from distant ports is a fallacy, with reference to British Columbia, which has no foundation
in reason, and will result in no good to our Colony. The legislators of British Columbia cannot control the laws of commerce. Such legislation is not more onerous to the consumers of the country than
it is impracticable and futile for the purposes for which it was enacted.
III. Resolved, That we will hereafter vote for no man who favours an increase of taxation in British
Columbia, believing as we do that the burdens of the people of that Colony are greater than they can
IV. Resolved, That a copy of these resolutions be prepared for signature, and when signed by the
miners and traders of British Columbia, now in this city, and by none others, they be forwarded to his
Excellency Governor Seymour, who is hereby most respectfully requested to lay them before the
Honourable Council and Legislative Assembly for their consideration, with this as our prayer, that
will cause the Customs Amendment Act to be revised, to suit the circumstances of the country.
Signed by Joseph F. Pascoe and 320 others
Gentlemen, New Westminster, 23rd March 1865.
I have had the honour to receive, on the 18th instant, from the hands of the gentleman
selected by the people of Cariboo East to represent their interests in the Legislative Council, the
petition adopted at a public meeting held in Victoria on the 25th February 1865. You object to the
Customs Ordinance lately passed in forcible terms, and give your reasons for the objections you entertain. You state that your expressions are full and honest. Of this I feel no doubt, and I am induced
in return to give you some honest explanations. Though I do not observe appended to the petition
many of the names most familiar to me in Cariboo, yet the opportunities of direct communication
between the Governor and the mining population are so few, that I am willing, for the purpose of
replying, to consider your petition as expressing in some measure the opinion of the miners of British
The general principles of _ the Bill which has now become law were adopted by the Legislative
Council before my arrival in the Colony. Understand that I am not wishing to throw any of the
responsibility that belongs to me on others. I shall not assent to any measure that I am not prepared
to defend. The lawj found in force,'and which has now been repealed, contained the objectionable and
unusual clause, that the value of the commodities introduced to this Colony should be calculated at the
place of import; thus taxing freight, and making the ship while on her voyage contribute to the
support of the public institutions of this Colony. The rate of duty appeared in the tariff to be so much,
whereas at the Custom House a very considerable additional tax was added. Many of the miners of
the Colony were not aware of this arrangement, and a comparison of the schedules attached severally
to the late and the present Acts was calculated, with them, to give rise to the impression that large
additional duties have been imposed—an impression totally unfounded where articles are water borne
to this Colony from the place of their growth or manufacture. In all such cases the duties are now
lower than they were; and if you see the import duties estimated in our Ways and Means as more
productive than last year, it is because we expect to have a much larger population in the Colony, not
that we have a wish or an expectation to raise an additional cent in the import duties from any one of
you.^ But your own practical experience may lead you to say that at the present moment you pav a
heavier import duty than you did last year. I reply that goods landed and stored at Victoria still pay,
in conformity with the principle, ofthe new measure, a duty higher than those coming direct from the
place ot their manufacture or growth.
I h WAiU+ lroh*hly !?e presented to you, in the town from which you address me, that the late Customs Act has been drawn upon principles hostile to Vancouver Island. ' Such is not the case. All the
products raised by the agriculture or manufactured by the skill and industry of the sister Colony
receive, from her proximity, a protection in our markets. The beer, the cider, the carriages, whatever
is made or grown on the island, enters on highly favourable terms into competition with similar articles
introduced from California or Europe. If Vancouver Island is not in a position to profit by this beneficial arrangement of our law, you will see that that is no reason why Victoria should, by doing the
principal commercial operations of this Colony, levy a toll on all we use or consume.
But I by no means wish to deny that there is an appearance of unfriendliness towards the place from
which you write, and I doubt not but.that the expressions of " unjust and inequitable," which you
apply to our_ recent legislation, would find wide echo there. But the reasons which induced me to
give my sanction to the new law were exactly the reverse of those attributed by you to the
of this Colony.
It is, beyond all things, just and equitable that a community, like an individual, should make
arrangements for the payment of the debts it may incur. You are aware that British Columbia has
been a large borrower of money, laid out, you will allow me to say, almost entirely in facilitating access
which most of you gentlemen leave by" the very first
opportunity when the mining season closes, would have sufficient attractions to induce you to return to
)ut, you will allow me to say, almost entirely in facilitating ace
to the gold mines, and thus reducing the expense of living there. What is the security of this del
We can hardly flatter ourselves that the Colony.
our gold creeks if richer temptations offered themselves elsewhere. The non-resident traders, who
derive nearly all the profit from the commercial transactions of this Colony, are not, of course, in any
way liable for its debts. The best security would be in a resident population, and it is but reasonable
that those who have made of this Colony their home, at whatever risk, should have the larger share of
the profits of its commercial transactions. Let the merchants who wish to share in the benefits come
to the Colony and share likewise the risks; and I would venture to remark that, if you and the other
miners who now live but half the year in British Columbia were to remain here during the 12
months, the taxation would fall much lighter on all.
You will perhaps here observe ■ why do we not, by accepting tbe proffered union with the neighbouring Colony, extend our responsibilities and area of taxation over the merchants of Victoria and
the miners who spend their winter in that town ? I do not feel called upon to pronounce now an
opinion on this subject, but I would observe that no proposal for union, which offered any prospect of
acceptation here, was made in Vancouver Island until the formal notice was given of the Customs Act
to which you object.
I have, however, no fear as to the ability of the Colony to meet its present and probable prospective
indebtedness ; but this should not be left to chance. The reduction in the cost of living, which, I will
show you, must take place at Cariboo, will make your labours more profitable, and thousands are now
approaching our southern boundary to work our newly-discovered gold fields and share temporarily at
least in the public burdens.
You see that I do not assent to the main propositions contained in your address, therefore I will not
follow you into details. I know that the immediate operation of the new Customs law is disagreeable :
its benefits not yet within your reach.
You have selected the article of beans specially for comment; an article bulky, but of small intrinsic
value. Compare the price of beans at New Westminster and Williams Creek, and see what makes
them dear at the latter place. It is the transport, not the tax. If all the beans for future consumption
were to be stored in Victoria, introduced at the highest duty, and no improvements were made in the
communications, the difference of price would be infinitesimal and utterly inappreciable in the miner's
daily meals. But we look for direct importation, which would, before the season is over, reduce the
price of all articles in Cariboo to a lower standard than yet seen there. With moderate charges, telegraphic communication, and a road completed, as I anticipate, through from New Westminster to
Williams Creek, the northern mines will present more attractions to the fortunate holders of claims
than they have yet done.
I will only notice one other remark in your petition.    You say | a reasonable notice for the enforce-
| ment of such a measure" (the Customs Ordinance) | is customary in other countries, as it
1 equitable and fair." You. may perhaps not be aware that when the Chancellor of the Exchequer's
financial statement is made in the House of Commons, an order is at once given for the enforcement of
any alteration of duties he may suggest in anticipation of an Act of Parliament for the purpose.
However, in the instance of the British Columbian Customs Ordinance there was elaborate notice
given. The principles were adopted by the Legislative Council on the 18th February 1864, before I
reached the Colony. I stated on the 28th April that I should consider the question in the recess. On
the 12th December I gave notice that a measure of the kind would be introduced. On the 12th of
January I distinctly stated the Bill to be that of last year. No approaching measure could well have
had more thorough ventilation.
And now that it has passed it must be allowed to be to a certain degree tentative. You and I differ
widely as to its merits. Let us give it a fair trial, and before the next session I shall be prepared, to
receive (I hope, personally, on Williams Creek), with every respect, your more experienced opinion.
Depend upon it the last thing the Government of this Colony would desire to do is to discourage the
miners from developing its resources, or allow any large body of our population to lapse into a state of
political discontent. .      . .
The Standing Orders which I framed for the adoption of the Legislative Council provide that no
s "perfectly
d deserving
petition shall be presented without an endorsation stating that it i
" of presentation." I am half inclined to doubt whether the terms " unjust and inequitable " applied
to recent legislation can come within this definition, but I have no doubt that respect for the presenter
and to the petitioners, whom the Governor is willing to consider as, to a certain extent, representing the
miners of Cariboo, will secure for it an indulgent reception when I lay the petition, together with a
copy of this letter, before the House.
Messrs. J. F. Pascoe, S. Hodge, Hugh Gartland,
And the other signers of the Victoria petition.
I have, &c.
(Signed)        Frederick Seymour.
D 3 28
Encl. 3 in No. 9.
Enclosure 3 in No. 9.">«W
Memorandum by the Collector of Customs, New Westminster.
At the end of last January the schooner "Onward" went into Burrard's Inlet, and the master,
McKay, sent one of his hands across to the custom house to enter and clear the vessel for Queen
Charlotte's Island. The man brought a manifest with two articles only entered on it. Of the provisions
on board that would be subject to duty he knew nothing, and I told him to return to the vessel and bring
me a written account of them. He came back (the next day, I think) with the list I had asked for, but
with a message at the same time from the master to say that he had got a cargo of shingles at the inlet
to take to Nanaimo, which suited him better than going north, and I gave him at once a clearance tor
Nanaimo. I would as readily, if he had asked for it, have given him a clearance for the north coast. It
was a matter entirely of calculation on the part of the master; and the statement of the Chamber of
Commerce, that a clearance was refused unless the vessel came to New Westminster, is untrue.
In the same paragraph of the report of the Chamber of Commerce it is stated that New Westminster
has constantly received supplies from Burrard's Inlet when the river has been closed. It has happened,
within my experience of six years, once, and once only, in 1862, when the weather was unusually
severe. .
In this present year the weekly steamer has missed but one trip, and that was not because of ice m
the river, but because the mail was brought to us by another vessel.
Custom House, (Signed)       W. Hamley.
30th March 1865.
P.S.—On the 4th of January the "Meg Merrilies" went into the inlet with provisions for the
working party at Port Neville;  the duty was paid here, and I sent Mr. Wylde across to examine and
pass the goods.
(Signed)       W. H.
End. 4 in No. 9.
Enclosure 4 in No. 9.
The "North Pacific Times," Friday, March 17, 1865.
Resolutions of the Victoria Chamber of Commerce.
Hitherto the outcry of the Victorians against the recent action of our Legislative Council has
seemed to spring from a feeling of panic—blind and without reason. Our own new tariff came close upon
the heels of the most exciting election ever held in Victoria, and at a moment when the party who were
seeking to change its entire policy had emerged from the struggle flushed with success. De Cosmos
and McClure, in their eagerness to establish their union and tariff sentiments as the voice of the people,
and undoubtedly contending against the whole moneyed power of Victoria, can well be excused for
forgetting in the heat of the contest that another party must be consulted in the affair, quite as much
interested in the question as the merchants of Wharf Street. This party so overlooked was the small
Colony of British Columbia—the cause of the very existence of Victoria as a town of any importance,
and at present the consumer of nearly three-fourths of its entire exports. When, therefore, by exertions
far surpassing any that had ever been made before they had achieved their return to the Assembly, we
can imagine how like a thunder-clap came our new revenue law, and can pass over the bitter things
which have been said by them, impugning not only the judgments of our legislators, but their motives
Next to this came the " miners' meeting," originating in political trickery, conducted by men who
have served a long apprenticeship in " wire-pulling" in the United States, and during the whole proceedings of which, although concealed by the intentional gloss of newspaper reports, we can see a very
evident attempt on the part of all influential and sensible men to shirk the responsibility of joining in
it. Would it be a difficult matter in arty community to persuade a mass of unthinking labouring men
that an apparent additional duty upon their supplies was a hardship, while the aim of such duty, and
the eventual expenditure of the money collected from it, was steadily kept out of view ? And' yet,
after all the manufactured enthusiasm which was brought to bear upon these men, and the insidious
appeals which were made to their selfishness, at the last accounts the whole roll of names upon their
monster petition has reached only a little over two hundred!
But by the last express we are put in possession of an appeal of a different nature, viz., a series of
resolutions by the Chamber of Commerce, addressed to the Secretary of State for the Colonies and
accompanied by a lengthy memorial explaining the causes of the resolutions. This is the voice of
capital—a voice entitled to a hearing in every country, yet not apt to be more truthful or unselfish
than that of the rabble. In the present instance, we think, this plausible and specious document can
be shown to be onesided, not in all respects entitled to credence, and in every line breathing attachment
to Victoria, without the slightest reference to the interests of our own Colony.
Our limits preclude us from giving these resolutions at length. Suffice it, the first one proclaims
| an equitable union between the two Colonies as essential to the maintenance of imperial and tocal
" interests on the North Pacific." The second one declares " the maintenance of the free port svstem
I to be of vital importance to the prosperity of Victoria and Vancouver Island," and " direct taxation to
" be the only politic and equitable method of raisingt a revenue."
It strikes us that in the very outset of the report a strange error was committed by gentlemen of sn
much intelligence, and representing as they do the commercial interests of so important a town as
Victoria.   They ask first m strong^ewn^oi-union-with-Britislr-eo-himbia; then, in the whole of the
subsequent report, efr&f argument that is adduced is simply applicable to Vancouver Island alone, and
not the sightest reference is made to any measures or policy calculated to benefit us should union be
granted. Would not their report have been far more suggestive of their business habits if they had
first urged the advantages of union, and then have proposed a code " equitable" and fair to both
Colonies in the event of such union taking place ? Either their present report is a piece of special
pleading, to attract the attention of the Home Government from the real point to be considered, or the
astuteness of these gentlemen shows them that union will not probably take place against our will, and
that their only hope is to retain their free port.    We are inclined to the latter view of the case.
Let us consider this question passed over in so politic a manner by these gentlemen, and see what
would be an " equitable union." Clearly in their minds, a single Government for both Colonies, whose
head-quarters should be in Victoria, and an amalgamation of their revenue of 30,0007., and our own of
150,0007., to be used jointly for the support of both Colonies. Well may they ask for this for Victoria,
for it at once relieves the Government of the immense burden of that deficit shown in the recent
estimates. But in return for the pecuniary favours received from this Colony, what is given ? The
privilege of being governed by absentees — a privilege, the value of which has in former years been
fully tested. A continual struggle against the moneyed power of Victoria in all elections (and the
unscrupulous manner in which the last election was conducted gives us a slight foretaste of what it
would be in other circumstances)—a monopoly of all business, and all freedom from taxation for Victoria,
to the entire ignoring of our own claims ! They are willing to consent to union with our revenue, but
not to give up their pet free port! Why, if we were one Colony, should the inhabitants of Victoria
be free from indirect taxation more than any other part of the country. Where would the line be
drawn, enclosing the favourite town within its limits, and excluding all the rest of the population of
Vancouver Island from its benefits ? Or would they admit Nanaimo and the other towns on the island
into their family circle ? We should then see the anomaly of the residents of one side of the Gulf of
Georgia paying 15 and 20 per cent, duties on their supplies, and the other going scot free. In no
event could the free port be continued without a gross injustice to all who were excluded from its
The idea is advanced in this report that British Columbia is indebted largely to Victoria for its prosperity, because, forsooth, our merchants buy their goods of Victoria houses ! Is not this a strange idea
for mercantile men to promulgate ? What has built up Victoria but the mines of British Columbia ?
What supports its extensive trade now but British Columbia demands ? What makes the price of real
estate rise and fall like the tides, but reports from Cariboo ? And which is the most indebted — we
who may perhaps owe in dollars for the last shipments of bacon and beans that were made,—or they
who owe their prosperity and even their very existence as a community to our exertions ?
There is not, as they say, a disposition on the part of our rulers " to sacrifice the material interests
" of British Columbia at large," in order to elevate New Westminster above Victoria. Instead of that,
before the passing of the last tariff, the question was carefully considered, and it was admitted on the
part of the Government, that with a resident population of 10,000 persons in this Colony, sufficient to
induce direct trade, the revenue would be diminished instead of increased.
But our limits will not allow us to show up this report thoroughly. In addition to the points to
which we have alluded above, we are sorry to state that in some instances they have seriously deviated
from the truth. A paper emanating from so important a body as this one does is supposed to be based
upon facts alone, and correct even in its minutest particulars. What weight will be attached to it by
the Secretary for the Colonies when it is proved that statements are made which are absolutely
incorrect ?
We will refer briefly to two or three. They say, " A case recently occurred in which a schooner
§ bound for Queen Charlotte's Island, with supplies for some miners supposed to be short of provisions,
" went to Burrard's Inlet, a distance of seven miles overland from New Westminster, was refused a
" clearance unless she came to New Westminster, and ultimately returned to Victoria."
The facts, as we obtain them from the custom-house authorities, are simply these: about a month
since the schooner " Onward," Captain McKay, came to Burrard Inlet, and sending a man into the
custom house without a manifest, asked for a clearance for Queen Charlotte's Island. He was
sent back with directions to the captain to send the manifest of the vessel, and pay the custom duties
on the cargo, when a clearance would have been given him.    Instead of doing this, he found a cargo of
his not being
shingles, and returned to Vancouver Island. No clearance was refused on account of
port, but one would have been granted upon his payment of the usual duties.
- Again, they declare that they are unable to avail themselves of New Westminster as a port of original
shipment on account of " the intricate, narrow, and uncertain channel through the Sand Heads, at the
| mouth of the Fraser, available for ships drawing 16 feet at the utmost,"—"the subsequent danger
" and delay attending the river navigation, and the closing of the river by ice from time to time during
" the winter season, extending over four months." Thus discourseth the Victoria Chamber of Commerce.
About our navigation what says Captain Richards, who spent years in surveying the Gulf of Georgia
and waters in this vicinity ? " Fraser river, in point of magnitude and present commercial importance,
| is second only to the Columbian on the north-west coast of America. In its entire freedom from risk
1 of life and shipwreck, it possesses infinite advantages over any other river on the coast. Vessels of
" 18 to 20 feet draught may enter the Fraser and proceed as high as Langley, or a few miles above it,
i with ease, provided they have or are assisted with steam power."
Which will be received as worthy of evidence at home, the ex parte and interested statement of a body
of men seeking to establish the stability of their own investments, or the written testimonyof a navigator
whose charts are universally acknowledged to be singularly reliable and free from error ? The last
paragraph, regarding the ice, is a very grave misstatement. Never, except during the winter of 1862,
since New Westminster was a cjfty, has the navigation been impeded a month during the winter ; and
during the present and the last two winters not a week has elapsed when it was impossible to reach the
town. Even di&ihg the winter of 1862, when the Columbia river was entirely closed, the ice blockade
continued here but two months and four days, instead of four months. The same thing occurred to
Portland, a town situated inland more than five times the distance that we are, struggling against the
British same difficulties of navigation, threefold enhanced, and yet retaining, without an effort, its position of a
Columbia commercial depot of supplies for a population of 75,000 people.
and With these remarks we will leave this document.    Its specious arguments, and its gross misstatements
Vancouver of facts, render it unworthy of the body from which it emanated.   Its evident bias will destroy its effects
Island. upon those to whom it is addressed.
No. 10.
* These "will be
found enclosed
in Governor's
No. 30, of
21 March 1865,
page 20.
No. 10.
Copy of a DESPATCH from Governor Seymour to the Right Hon. Edward
Cardwell, M.P.
(Separate.) New Westminster, March 29, 1865.
(Received May 30, 1865.)
I am aware that I have not communicated with you as fully and rapidly recently
as I ought to have done. My first apology must be an extreme pressure of business
during the Legislative Session; my second, the extreme irregularity of the postal
arrangements. The American steamers are very irregular in their arrival at Esquimalt;
and during the winter the Hudson's Bay Company run their steamers as seldom as they
can to New Westminster.
I presume that the Governor of Vancouver Island will have informed you of the
efforts made in that Colony to procure annexation to this. Here the feeling is strongly
opposed to the proposed connexion. Indeed I cannot see how it could in any way
jbenefit British Columbia ; and it is impossible to avoid perceiving how, under the former
Government, this Colony was unduly depressed to raise Victoria to an artificial prosperity. New Westminster presented a miserable aspect of decay and disappointment,
while Victoria, though considerably more prosperous in appearance, astonished all
strangers at the little progress a town, through which had passed many millions of gold,
had made.
Among the means adopted by the people of Victoria for bringing about union has
been that of trying to create in our mining population dissatisfaction with the financial
arrangements of this Colony. I enclose an address presented to me by a body of
Victoria shopkeepers and Cariboo miners, together with my reply.* There are but three
names in the 300 which would carry weight in Cariboo, and it is by no means out of
respect for the petitioners that I have answered so fully. My answer appears to have
given satisfaction, and I would beg leave very respectfully to call your attention to the
statements it contains.
I learn, on inquiry from the Governor of Vancouver Island, that he sent on to you
without notice to me, or comment from himself, certain resolutions and statements passed
and made by the so-called Chamber of Commerce of Victoria. The statements are
very incorrect, and I have expressed to Governor Kennedy my regret that he should
have sent them on without my having the opportunity of refuting them.
There seems every likelihood of our having a rush to the newly-discovered gold
diggings. The season is, however, unusually unfavourable, and the upper roads blocked
with snow.
The Legislative Session is progressing satisfactorily, and I expect to prorogue next
completed in
The telegraph which will connect this place with Newfoundland will be
about 10 days. $|jp
I trust that you will forgive this informal communication made just as the steamer is
about to sail.
The Right Hon, Edward Cardwell, M.P
I have, &c.
(Signed)    FREDERK
No. 11.
No. 11.
Cofy of a DESPATCH from Governor Kennedy, C.B., to the Right Hon.
Edward Cardwell, M.P.
(No. 92, Separate.) Government House, Victoria, December 1, 1865.
(Received January 24, 1866.)
(Answered, No. 6, February 1, 1866, page 34.)
have the honour to forward herewith a petition from certain merchant^ traders,
ia, Vancouver Island, which has been entrusted to me for
and others resident in Victor:
2. I have numbered the paragraphs of the petition to facilitate reference.
3. It is to be regretted that this petition was not presented when the resolutions of
the local Legislature in favour of union with British Columbia were passed and transmitted to you in my Despatches Nos. 14 and 16,* dated 21st March 1865.
4. It will be within your recollection that I then informed you that a very decided
majority of the electors of the city of Victoria were advocates for the union of the
Colonies, accompanied by a tariff, or the imposition of import duties, as evinced in the
return of two members to the Legislative A ssembly, who at that time offered themselves
upon those principles.
5. I now observe with some surprise that several influential persons who supported
and voted for those members, and whose influence contributed materially towards their
return, have appended their names to the enclosed petition, praying for the " continuance
1 of the free port policy in its fullest integrity."
6. The following analysis of the signatures appended to the memorial is substantially
British subjects - - - 88
Americans - - - - 33
Germans    - - - - 21
French       - - - - 8
Unknown   - - - 7
* Pages 6
and 19.
7. You will also observe that many of the petitioners sign as the agents for absentees,
whether with or without their concurrence is not shown.
8. I will now proceed to offer such remarks upon the petition as appear to me
necessary for your information.
9. Paragraph No. 2. It is an undoubted fact that % great commercial depression " has
existed, and still exists in both these Colonies, and I am sure that you would have been
glad to have learned the petitioners' opinion of the cause or causes of it.
10. These causes, in my opinion, rest with the petitioners themselves, and are beyond
the reach of any remedy which you can apply. They may be found in a system of
reckless credit, competition, and over-trading. It is notorious that large quantities of
goods were thrown into Cariboo market^'this year by the merchants of Victoria which
did not realize the cost of carriage. The supply far exceeded the*demand. While this
proved a great boon to the working miner, it left the Cariboo traders without means of
paying their debts to Victoria, and the Victorian merchants without payment for the
goods they supplied. To this obvious cause for " depression " may be added the more
stringent administration of the customs laws at San Francisco and neighbouring American
ports where a large amount of goods were formerly introduced from Vancouver Island
without going through the formalties of the custom house.
11. I may further remark that this 1 depression" is by no means confined to British
Columbia and Vancouver Island. Many thousand persons are departing monthly from
San Francisco, owing to the same causes which my experience leads me to believe are
common to all mining or gold producing countries, and will continue more or less till
men become honest and prudent.
12. Paragraph 4. As regards Vancouver Island, I am of opinion that the character
and small number of the population render the present form of government inapplicable
and expensive. The statistics and taxes, as shown in the annual blue book, will enable
you to judo-e whether it can be truthfully termed | a most onerous burden upon all
" classes." On this subject I would refer you to a recent Despatch of mine, No. 81,
22nd September 1865.
13. Paragraph No. 8. The proclamation declaring Victoria and Esquimalt fre<* ports,
simply declares that they J shall be (free ports) until otherwise determined by proper
" authority."
14. Paragraph 9. The petitioners are obviously in error in stating or thinking that
" the vote of the House of Assembly praying Her Majesty to grant an union of these
I Colonies on such terms as to Her Majesty may seem meet, is not inconsistent with
1 the prayer of your petitioners for the continuance of the free port policy in this
I Colony." A reference to my Despatches Nos. 14 and 16, 1865, together with the
whole tenor of the debates clearly point to " union with a tariff."
15. I concur with the petitioners in thinking that the uncertainty existing on this
subject is producing very ill effects upon the business and prosperity of these Colonies,
14923. 32
British    but this uncertainty is, and has been mainly caused by the action of their own repre-
Columbia   Sentatives, over whom Her Majesty's Government has no control in this betiall.
*** 16   Paragraph 10.    My opinion on the subject of this paragraph will be lound m my
VwSTB Despatch No. 16, 21st March 1865 JI see no reason to alter it.
im^< • ^ j refrain  from offering any opinion on  the merits of the different systems ot
" free port" or import duties as applicable to the circumstances of this Colony, as it must
be contingent upon union or no union of these Colonies, on which subject I look daily
for information or instructions from you.
18. In conclusion I have only to state that I think this petition ought to have been
addressed to the local Legislature rather than Her Majesty's Secretary of State for the
I have, &c.
The Right Hon. Edward Cardwell, M.P., (Signed)        A. E. KENNEDY.
&c. &c. &c
Enclosure in No. 11.
To the Right Honourable'Edward Cardwell, Her Majesty's Principal Secretary of State
for the Colonies, &c, &c.
The humble Petition of the undersigned Merchants, Traders, and others, resident in Victoria,
Vancouver Island,
Humbly sheweth, .
1. That, your petitioners having expended a large amount of capital, time, and labour in this
Colony, are deeply interested in its welfare and success.
2. That your petitioners view with much anxiety the great commercial depression which has existed
for some time, and still exists, both in this Colony and also in British Columbia.
3. Your petitioners beg further to show, that, although the interests of British Columbia and Vancouver Island are identical, yet, since the appointment of a separate Governor for each, a policy (as
instanced by the imposition of " ad valorem " duties, amounting in effect to differential duties), has been
inaugurated by the Government of British Columbia, which has unfortunately proved not only specially
adverse to this Colony, but is operating most disastrously upon both, and in British Columbia even to
the extent of driving people to abandon houses and farms, and leave the Colony.
4. Your petitioners further show that the number of inhabitants in the two Colonies is so small, that
the expense of separate Governments is a most onerous burden upon all classes.
5. That only upon the faith of the permanent maintenance of Victoria as a free port, the mercantile
class, capitalists, and others, expended large sums in the purchase of land, and the erection of wharves,
warehouses, and buildings, and made Victoria so entirely the source of supply for British Columbia,
that up to this time there is not a single importing house in that Colony.
6. With Victoria capital nearly the whole business of British Columbia is carried on, and almost
every enterprise in British Columbia, whether of trade, mining, or the building and employment of
steam boats, has been undertaken by the commercial community of Victoria.
7. That Vancouver Island, as far as it has been already explored, does not contain much land fit for
agricultural purposes, the greater portion of it being mountainous, and densely wooded, but it is known
to be rich in deposits of coal, iron, copper, gold, and other minerals.
8. From its commanding geographical position, Victoria is eminently adapted for a commercial depot
for the North Pacific, and owing to its free port, has attracted commerce from Mexico, California, the
Sandwich Islands, Oregon, Washington Territory, the Russian possessions, India, China, and Japan.
9. Your petitioners are of opinion that the vote of the House of Assembly of this Colony, praying
Her Majesty to grant an union of these Colonies on such terms as to Her Majesty may seem meet, is
not inconsistent with the prayer of your petitioners for the continuance of the free port policy in this
Colony, a policy which they fully believed when they settled here, and invested their means in permanent improvements, was fixed and decided upon by Her Majesty's Government, and strictly guarded
by the instructions issued to Her Majesty's representative here, and published in a proclamation of
18th January 1860, declaring the port of Victoria to be a free port. And your petitioners now pray
that in any union of the two Colonies which may be decided upon, the continuance of the free port
policy in its fullest integrity in this Colony, may be provided for and definitely settled, so that confidence in the policy of the Government may not be shaken, as the uncertainty existing in this respect
had been for some time past producing most disastrous effects upon the business, prosperity, and property of both Colonies.
10. That the union of these Colonies that would be most advantageous for both, in the opinion of
your petitioners, would be one having the nature of a federal union, having one Governor, with one
civil list, as far as practicable, one code of laws, common jurisdiction of the law courts over both
Colonies, with a court of appeal, and leaving the financial matters of either Colony separate, as at
11. Your petitioners are strengthened in their opinion of the vital importance to this Colony of the
continuance of the free port policy, by the views expressed in a report and series of resolutions of the
Chamber ot Commerce of Victoria, and of which your petitioners desire to be allowed to append a copy,
and make part of this petition.*
12. Your petitioners lastly urge, that in this Colony there are many engaged in commercial pursuits
not entitled to the exercise of the franchise, but whose interests are bound up in the Colony in which
tneir capital is largely invested and employed, and whose voice cannot be heard unless in the way of
K^J^ft MS°^ti0ni/Se Samber 0f Commerce will be found as an Enclosure to Governor
Kennedys Despatch, No. 15, of the 21st March 1865, printed at page 13.
special memorial like the present; and this, your petitioners beg respectfully to set forth will Appear by
a reference to the Government Real Estate Tax Lists of the city and district of Victoria, the list of
voters for the same, and the Governmental list of trades licences appended hereto, and which they pray
to make part of this petition, by which they affirm that the bona fides of this petition will be fiilly
And your petitioners, as in duty bound, will ever pray.
(Signed) D. Babington Ring, Chairman, late Acting Attorney-General
and Member of the Legislative Council in the Administration of Sir James Douglas; and 140 others.
No. 12.
Copy of a DESPATCH from Governor Kennedy, C.B., to the Right Hon. Edward
Cardwell, M.P.
(No. 97, Separate.) Government House, Victoria, December 16, 1865.
SlR, (Received February 12, 1866.)
I have the honour to enclose the copy of Resolutions passed by the Legislative
Assembly of this Colony, on the 13th instant, on the subject of union of this Colony with
British Columbia.
I have nothing to add on this subject beyond that which is contained in my Despatches,
Nos. 14 and 16,* ofthe 21st March 1865.
I also enclose, for your information, copies of communications which have passed
between the Legislative Assembly and myself on this subject.
I have, &c.
The Right Hon. Edward Cardwell, M.P. (Signed)        A. E. KENNEDY,
&c, &c, &c. Governor.
No. 12.
Enclosure 1 in No. 12.
Vancouver Island.
13thDec. 1865.
* Pages 6
and 19.
Resolution of
7thDec. 1865.
Message of
12thDec. 1865.
Encl. 1 in
No. 12.
Resolution passed the Legislative Assembly December 13, 1865, read second time and agreed to,
December 1865.
11. Resolved,—That this House fully endorses the union resolutions passed by this House on
January 25, 1865, and would again repeat its conviction, that an immediate union of Vancouver Island
and British Columbia is necessary, beyond every other measure, to impart confidence to the public mind,
and place both Colonies on a prosperous footing.
12. Resolved,-—-That although this House has already shown its willingness to accept whatever constitution i Her Majesty's Government may be pleased to grant,' it would fail in its duty to the people of
this Colony, as well as to Her Majesty, did it not express its conviction that no constitution would be
adapted to the growing wants of these Colonies that did not embrace a lepresentative government that
would give to the people the right to determine the mode as well as the amount of taxation, and that
would make the official heads of departments responsible to the people of the United Colony.
" 3. Resolved,—That the above resolutions be transmitted to his Excellency the Governor with the
respectful request that they be forwarded as early as possible to Her Majesty's Secretary of State for
the Colonies
(Signed)       R. W. Torrens,
Clerk of the House.
Enclosure 2 in No. 12.
Vancouver Island.
Resolution passed the Legislative Assembly December 7, 1865.
1 Resolved,—That an humble address be presented to his Excellency the Governor, praying
him to lay before this House copies of all public despatches forwarded by his Excellency to Mr. Card-
well in reference to the resolution passed by this House in June 1864, in connexion with the Crown
Lands, and all Despatches sent to Mr. Cardwell in reference to the Union Resolutions which passed
this House in January last."
(Signed)       R. W. Torrens,
Clerk of the House.
Enclosure 3 in No. 12.
Vancouver Island.
No. 92. Government House, Victoria, December 12, 1865.
To the Honourable the Speaker and Members of the Legislative Assembly :
I have the honour to acknowledge the receipt of an address from the Legislative Assembly,
praying that I would lay before the House " copies of all Despatches forwarded to Mr. Cardwell in
" reference to the Resolution passed by this House in June 1864, in connexion with the Crown Lands
E 2
Encl. 2 in
No. 12.
Encl. 2 in
No. 12.
«<-■ 34
British     " and all Despatches sent to Mr. Cardwell in reference to the Union Resolutions which passed the
Columbia    " House in January last." .      . |   ™    .,   ,     - ,,    .
and With the most earnest desire to meet the wishes of the Legislative Assembly, and atiord the fullest
Vancouver  information on these subjects, I regret that I am precluded from complying with the conditions ot their
Island.     address without the sanction of Her Majesty's Secretary of State for the Colonies previously obtained.
— I now upon my own responsibility, lay before the House extracts of Despatches transmitted by me
No. K>;l<eb.2, on the gub-ect 0f the Crown Lands of Vancouver Island, relating to the matters treated of in the
^§  Despatch of Her Majesty's Secretary of State recently laid before" the House; but the production of
N<? "s ZriiS' Despatches addressed by me to Her Majesty's Secretary of State on the subject of the "Union Resolu-
i5,'fs65. I tions," either in whole or in part, before I had received replies thereto, would be a manifest breach ot
duty, and wholly without precedent. .
The object of the Legislative Assembly in the present instance will be probably attained by my
stating that in .addressing Her Majesty's Secretary of State in March 1865, I expressed my deliberate
conviction that the union of these Colonies would be conducive to the best interests of both, and my
earnest desire that it should be consummated.
My subsequent experience having fortified that conviction and  sentiment, I continue to be firmly of
opinion that the Colonies of British Columbia and Vancouver Island should be united, and that the union
k of them would be an important means of securing their substantial progress and prosperity.
I have, &c.
(Signed)       A. E. Kennedy,
No. 13. No. 13.
Copy of a DESPATCH from the Right Hon. Edward Cardwell, M.P., to Governor
Kennedy, C B.
(No. 6.)
Sir, Downing Street, February 1, 1866.
Page so. I have the honour to acknowledge the receipt of your Despatch, No. 92,* of the
1st of December, enclosing a petition addressed to me by the merchants, traders, and
other residents in Victoria, Vancouver Island.
I have to request that you will inform the memorialists that the interests to which
they advert will not fail to receive careful consideration.
I have, &c.
Governor Kennedy, C.B. (Signed)        EDWARD CARDWELL.
&c. &c.
No. 14,
No. 14.
Copy of a DESPATCH from Governor Seymour to the Right Hon. Edward
Cardwell, M.P.
Rue de la Paix, Paris, February 17, 1866.
(Received February 24, 1866.)
~ resolutions of th(
As you did me the honour of consulting me respecting the resolutions of the
tive Assembly of Vancouver Island, praying that that Colony might be united
to British Columbia, I would now venture to express in writing, I believe in accordance
with your wish, my views upon the subject.
2. I think that the Assembly has faithfully represented the desire of the majority of
the population. So great is the anxiety for union existing in Victoria, the political
centre of the Island, that the conditions are left entirely for you to determine. Nanaimo,
the second town, I believe, faintly wishes for the amalgamation of the two Colonies, but
the people there are prosperous, contented, and the best feeling exists between them and
the colonists of the mainland.
3. The question of the relations of the two Colonies is one of great difficulty. They
were, j until recently^ united to the extent of having a Governor 'in common. But the
dissatisfaction in British Columbia, at the state of things which then existed, was such
that your predecessor effected the separation now found so irritating to Victoria.
H Under the system which the Duke of Newcastle abolished, the government of
British Columbia was carried on from the capital of another Colony. The Governor
and principal public officers drew full pay from the main land and lived on the Island.
The people of Victoria profited by the expenditure of the proceeds of taxation levied ori
another community, and were at the same time, by the freedom of the ports, relieved
from the payment of the heavy import duties, which fell on those who made of British
Columbia their home. Whether it was wise ever to make two Colonies of the territories
lying west of the Rocky Mountains, it is useless now to inquire ; but colonists having
oeen invited to settle on the continent on the faith that they were to form an independent
community, possessing their own government and capital, the old system was found to
be manifestly unjust, and your predecessor, listening to the voice of the protesting
colonists, effected the separation so joyously received in British Columbia.
5. I say confidently that that Colony has not altered its views. It has had the one
great wish gratified and dreads all change. I have heard this denied by Victoria
politicians, and I have in vain asked them for any evidence to support their denial, if
.a desire for union has arisen in the Colony, how does it show itself ? The gentlemen
who successfully appeal to the people for nomination to the Legislative Council pledge
themselves to opposition to union. The Council, on this subject entirely unfettered by \
me, vote unanimously against it. The issue was fairly tried wherever there was a chance
of success. Petitions were printed in Victoria recommending union and the abolition
of unpopular taxation and circulated in the mining districts, but they remained unsigned.
Indignation meetings were called in Cariboo, but no one would attend. A newspaper
was started in that district specially to advocate union and oppose the local government.
The miners merely protested against the scurrility of their professed organ, and when
extraneous assistance was withdrawn it died from want of their support. 1 am, for many
reasons, anxious that the desire for union should exist in British Columbia.    It does not.
6. The efforts of the merchants of Victoria to create such a desire in the mining
districts were, however, vigorous and well timed; not very high principled, but showing
considerable political dexterity. It was felt that union, as a separate question, could
stand no chance of obtaining a hearing in Cariboo, but it might meet with some attention
on the hustings, coupled with an abrogation of the export duty on gold, and a general
reduction of taxation. Systematic agitation might, possibly, stir up the feeling against
the gold tax to a sufficient strength to drag into light its self-imposed associate, union.
I do not deny the unpopularity of the export duty, but the miners are aware that it was
imposed with the consent of their own Mining Board, and voted for by their elected
Members of Council. They know the requirements of the Government, but above all
they know that it requires no change in their political condition, no assistance from
without, to relieve them from any burdens unanimously affirmed to be distasteful.
7. It would have been well if Victoria had earlier passed the resolutions in favour of
unconditional union. It was not until the efforts to obstruct the Government of British
Columbia, by shaking the confidence of the people in its justice, had proved vain that
the wise course was adopted. Though, I shall presently show that the larger Colony
has progressed greatly since it attained a separate existence, yet it did not escape entirely
uninjured from the self-damaging attacks of the Victoria politicians. The prosperity
of both Colonies depends principally on the power of the gold mines of the mainland
to attract a considerable share of the large floating population which, centred in winter
in California, seeks in the public prints and in every rumour, a guide to direct its steps
to the most profitable field for summer labour. The Victoria papers and their Cariboo
representative, during its short existence, represented British Columbia to be overtaxed
md uniustly governed.    Many persons, undoubtedly, in San Francisco took the English
unjustly governea. many p
reports on English mines and management as correct, and turned their steps towards
other gold fields which American speculators took care not to depreciate. The efforts of
the Victoria agitators were thus partially successful. The great objects of intimidating
the Government and exciting disaffection failed, but a feeling outside the Colony was
created against the then recent legislation. This success, once obtained, caused alarm
in Victoria. Then came the outcry that the miners were leaving the country; merchants from the Island waited on the Governor on the subject, and when the injury was
done the Cariboo press was silenced.
8. Even in England, persons connected with Victoria have had a meeting where, in
their eao-erness for union, they have reported the two Colonies to be languishing or
retrograding in their present separation. Reports on the subject, deficient either in
candour or information, have been furnished to the leading London journals. I regret
that the matter of union should not have been allowed to rest, where it was properly
placed, in your hands. Who would emigrate from England to Colonies reported by their
own reputed representatives to have early in their career entered on their decline ? ) Who
would seek investments in the funds of a community alleged to be daily diminishing in
wealth? .     . . .
9. I am prepared to allow that Victoria is not flourishing. I maintain that British
Columbia is so. It may seem strange that their progress is not parallel, and I can believe
that the cause has escaped the knowledge of some of the merchants of Victoria. The
explanation is, however, simple. ...
10. The discoveries of gold on the Lower Fraser first attracted to British territory
a large portion of the unattached population of Western America.   The immigrants came
& E3 36
' Columbia
III til
from Oregon or California by sea. Their detention at the first place of landing created
Victoria. The bars on the Fraser were gradually worked out. Now they are abandoned
to the labours of Chinamen. But year by year the summer immigrants pushed farther
into the interior, still by the valley of the great river. Finally Cariboo was discovered,
and its prodigious wealth attracted large numbers of miners, who were fed and supplied
from Victoria. Driven from their work by the severe climate in the winter, the
I Caribooites " spent some time and much money in that town, and added to the profits
of the merchants who had monopolized their market during the working season. There
were no large settlements in British Columbia; it was only a Colony in name. There
was a gold mine at one end of a line of road j a seaport town (under a different Government) at the opposite terminus.
11. Here was the real cause of the ill-feeling between the two Colonies. The settlers
on the Frazer paid gold-miners' duties on all they consumed, while the people of the
Island profited by the success of the diggers and paid no import duties. Everything was
done to foster Victoria. Where public officers served both Colonies, the Island gave its
own half-pay; the full salary was drawn from the heavily-taxed British Columbians, and
the whole, this one salary and a half, was spent on the Island. Imperial interests were
assumed to be involved in the welfare of Victoria, and people affected to believe that
great destinies were in store for the town, they had early begun to name the " Queen
" City of the Pacific." Meanwhile every man on the mainland knew that the town was
kept alive by the British Columbian mines. They petitioned for separation, and they
got it. Now, at all events, the proceeds of their taxation are spent among them. Trade
is beginning to establish itself on the Fraser. On the other hand Victoria, descending to
common sense, seeks, at the sacrifice of her free port and constitution, a close union with
the Colony whose wealth is her support.
12. Cariboo was the great customer for Victoria; but Cariboo, with its prodigious
wealth, has been found not to be " poor man's diggings," not competent, therefore, to
support a very large population. The mines are of limited extent, the gold lies deep,
and is expensive to extract. The number of spring immigrants began early to fall off,
and in 1865 was smaller than usual. There was no dearth of labourers. Cariboo warned
off fresh comers, as every place was full. So it seemed, for with a diminished population, the yield of gold was in the proportion of 9 to 5 as compared with the preceding
year. Wages were steady at 40s. a day, and the necessaries of life far lower in price
than they had ever been before. Victoria continued to do the principal business of these
mines; but the population to feed was comparatively small, and Victoria suffered.
13. So did British Columbia to a certain extent. Road-side houses on the Cariboo
line became bankrupt as traffic decreased, by diminished immigration and accelerated
travelling. The general condition of the Colony was, however, prosperous. The
customs' receipts at New Westminster were, by the last account which has reached me,
15,000/. in excess ofthe corresponding period of 1864. I learn that the British Columbian capital "is making great progress; houses and wharves, clearing and fencing
I going on everywhere this autumn." And the most hopeful sign of all is beginning to
show itself: a disposition on the part ofthe miners to purchase land in New Westminster
or its neighbourhood, and commence the systematic colonization of the Lower Fraser.
These benefits m no way assist Victoria, nor can it appreciate the improvement in the
general condition of Cariboo, which now induces many miners to winter there instead of
squandering their money in Vancouver Island or San Francisco.
14. To the merchant of Victoria the depression he felt in 1865 appeared to extend
over British Columbia; but he could only see the valley of the Fraser, while a vaster
view lay open before the eyes of the Government of New Westminster. The usual wave
of immigration was seen to come to us in equal, if not larger volume than in former
years. Many miners were, doubtless, prevented by the Victorian outcry from coming
direct to the English Colonies, and the more united Americans secured the preference
for their own gold fields of Boise or Cceur d'Helene. But disappointed hopes soon
drove thousands in search of richer deposits. From the sea to the Rocky Mountains,
°n l j l SldeS °f the boundarJ line> the country swarmed with eager prospectors, who
rushed backwards and forwards as reports circulated that the gold which all knew to exist
had at last been found.
15. Late in 1864 important discoveries had been made near the British Kootenay Pass
ot the Rocky Mountains, in our territory. It was first through American newspapers
Sm .r0^1116 aware of a rich and prosperous mining town existing within our limits, about
500 miles due east of New Westminster.     Although the Kootenay mines could, at first
e^only^ approached by passing through United States  territory, we   soon   extended
over the new diggings, established Courts of Justice, and collected
British institutions
taxes. On the disruption of the mining camps of the Boise country, Kootenay received
a considerable accession of population, and in the season of 1865 the new diggings were
paying to the Colonial Treasury, in taxes, upwards of a thousand pounds a week. Here
was a tangible benefit to British Columbia, which brought no immediate advantages to
Victoria. On the contrary, the new mines, which were fed from across the frontier, took
away many persons from Victoria's best customer, Cariboo.
16. The American prospectors continued to pour in by every opening in our rugged
frontier, and the attraction of the Kootenay itself soon dimmed before the discoveries on
the Big Bend of the Columbian I had fortunately consented to license the running of
steamers, under the American flag, in the purely English waters of that river. Crowds
arrived, freights poured in, and the advent of winter alone prevented the general rush
which is confidently predicted for this year. I am credibly informed that these latest
discovered gold mines have, in some places, yielded as much as eight hundred dollars a
day to the hand, without machinery. If such be the case we need fear no competition.
Victoria has, however, in no way shared, as yet, in the profits; The customs duties
levied at Fort Shepherd, on the Columbia, belong to us British Columbians alone. In
other parts of the Colony the prospectors have been successful.' Near Lillooet, in a fine
agricultural district, a stretch of nearly 70 miles of rich auriferous ground has been
discovered, and high hopes are entertained as regards the next mining season. I say
again that British Columbia is flourishing, and has a still brighter prospect in view.
17- I may observe, incidentally, that the unsuccessful miners from Boise, or the Cceur
d'Helene, are as valuable to us as an equal number of those who come by Victoria and
the Fraser. The citizens of the United States are our boldest prospectors, and not the
least law-observing portion of our population. They come to us across the frontier
prepared to accept our institutions, their heads undisturbed by political agitation. The
carrying out of the last sentence of a Court of Lynch Law sometimes diminishes their
numbers as they approach the boundary line { but once it is passed, the revolver and
bowie knife are laid aside, and perfect tranquillity prevails under our vigorous administration throughout the Colony. Crimes of violence are now almost unknown in British
Columbia, and on the late circuit the Supreme Court did not find a single prisoner for trial
at the Kootenay.
18. While British Columbia is reputed to be languishing, it may be interesting for me
to mention, though I write without official documents, some of the principal public works
which have been accomplished by us in 1865. I premise with the statement that every
surveyor and every engineer in the Colony was in Government employ last year. Every
discharged sapper, possessing anything like adequate knowledge, was likewise induced to
enter our service. A good trail for pack animals has been opened from the Fraser to the
Kootenay. The Cascade Range, the Gold Range, the Selkirk Range, have been successively surmounted; with what labour may be imagined, when I state that at the end of
May the cutting over the Cascade Mountains had, on each side, seven feet of snow. This
trail not only runs through English territory to a gold mine, but it affords, by the British
Kootenay Pass, an easy access from the Pacific to the Hudson's Bay lands beyond the
Rocky Mountains. Its principal value, however, to the colonists is that it already
enables the merchants of New Westminster to undersell those of Lewiston and Walla
Walla at the new diggings. A sleigh road has been opened from the seat of Government
to Yale, running for upwards of a hundred miles through the dense forests of the Lower
Fraser. A bridge has, for the first time, been thrown over Thompson's River, on the
main road to the northern mines. Upwards of twenty thousand pounds have been
expended on the completion of the high road into Cariboo, allowing machinery at last
to be introduced into William's Creek. A large sum in connecting, by a longstreet, the
three mining towns in that locality. A good road now connects New Westminster with
the sea at Burrard Inlet, and secures the inhabitants from inconvenience should an
unusually severe winter close the Fraser. A light-ship, public libraries, new school
buildings, testify to the energy of the Government. If I add that in the year just passed
steamers have, for the first time, navigated the Upper Columbia, and that New Westminster has been brought into connexion with the whole telegraphic system of the United
States, Canada, Newfoundland, and with Cariboo, I point out an amount of work
accomplished in a single summer, I should think entirely unprecedented in so young a
Colony. For the telegraphic communication, and the new line of steamers, the Government can only claim the credit of the earnest efforts it has made to second the enterprise
of our republican neighbours. .
19. I have endeavoured at considerable length to prove, first, that union with Vancouver Island, or the annexation of that Colony is not desired in British Columbia;
secondly, that the larger Colony is not in a depressed condition.    Possibly external
Island. British
j\|        AND
agitation in connexion with the gold export duty may have to a certain extent impeded
her progress. If, in the violent competition on the Pacific to make the mines in the
Colony or the States superior to each other in attraction, it be found that the British
export duty on gold acts unfavourably to us, I can only say that the tax
once repealed. Our great public work
impolitic, we will not suffer our miners
20. In the face of the reluctance
will be at
s are .done, and if the export duty, though just, is
to 1
over weighted by it in the great struggle.
Colony over which I preside, to be drawn into
{■:<■: Qion with Vancouver Island, some explanation is necessary of the motives which
induce me to entertain the question at all, instead of eonfining myself to backing the
prayer of my Legislative Council that the existing separation may continue unimpaired.
I consider, however, my duty to require of me, that I should not confine my attention
exclusively to the internal affairs ofthe tract of country under my Government, but that I
should likewise see to the strengthening of British authority, British influence, and
British power in the Pacific, and I at once admit that the existing division weakens all
three. The dissensions between the two Colonies are looked upon in the neighbouring
I States, as rather a scandalous, but novel and amusing feature in English colonization. I
am practically aware that it is extremely inconvenient for.the Commander-in-Chief of the
Pacific squadron to be in communication with two Governors of nominally equal position,
close to each other, but many thousands of miles from head-quarters. I see that the.
Indian population of our north-west coast, wherever the schooner or canoe of the
Victoria smuggler can reach, are withering and disappearing under the disastrous effects
of the whisky traffic. I must remember that both British Columbia and Vancouver
Island have occasionally questions to discuss with their American and Russian neighbours, and that, as things now are, there is nothing to secure uniformity of action or
expression in the English representatives. The one may be on the most friendly terms
with adjacent powers; the other, in a state of reserve, pending a reference to Europe.
r I find myself, under these circumstances, compelled to state that, in my opinion, England
fought to be represented by one civil authority only beyond the Rocky Mountains. Her
Majesty's prerogative could of course effect this, without the aid of Parliament, but if a
Lieutenant-Governor be appointed to the smaller and poorer Colony, the change, though
an undoubted improvement, would still leave Vancouver Island with a staff of public
officers beyond her present ability to support. I fear that the bickerings would not cease,
nor Victoria refrain from interference with the affairs of the neighbouring Colony.
21. Without any specific recommendation, I proceed to consider the terms upon which
union could be carried out with moderate satisfaction to the one Colony and the least distaste to the other. The Imperial Act 21 & 22 Vict. c. 99. (whichhas been repealed) provided that, on the petition ofthe two Legislative Houses of Vancouver Island, Her Majesty
might declare that Island to be an, integral part of the Colony of British Columbia.
This appears to me to be the principle upon which union should be carried out. But
British Columbia has since then been favoured with a Legislative Constitution, by an
Order in Council, and I am of opinion that no union should take place without the consent
\ of the Legislative Body created under it.     This, I think, might be obtained should Her
i Majesty's Government desire it and equitable terms be proposed.    But I would here
venture to state that if a return to the old state of things be sought to be imposed on
British Columbia the outcry to which the Duke of Newcastle yielded but two years ago
will be renewed with increased volume.
22. An Act of Parliament somewhat similar to that above referred to having been
recorded, the
rould at once
be extended over the Island. An early revision of these laws would, however, be
required. This would hardly be effected,'with a due regard to the interests of the newly
acquired territory by the present Legislative Council of British Columbia. That bodv
should be dissolved and a new Legislature, with representatives from Vancouver Island
called into existence. Then arises the important question, what shall be the Legislative
Constitution ofthe one great English Colony on the North Pacific ?
23. The Legislature of Vancouver Island, of which the extinct provision of the Act
already quoted, contemplated the disappearance, consists of a Governor, a nominated
Council, and an elected Assembly. Theoretically, perhaps, the best form of government. It is not for me to inquire how it has worked in Vancouver Island ; I content
myself with saying that British Columbia is not ripe for such institutions. I found my
opinion upon the following grounds -.—First, on account of the vast number of aliens
resident in the Colony, who would, I presume, be excluded from the suffrage were
.symmetrical constitution to be established. Secondly, because there are but few persons
who could devote their time and attention to the public service.    We should soon be
obtained, the consent of the Legislature of British Columbia formally re
Governor's proclamation of incorporation issued, the laws ofthe main land wo
reduced to pay our legislators, or fall into the hands of the professional politicians, of    British
whom the neighbouring States furnish to us the model.    Thirdly, because the uncertain   Columbia
allows of a " rush " here and a jfjj rush " there, a^ rich leads are
nature of gold
discovered, or old claims " cave in." Away goes the population from the "played out"
town. Magistrate and constables follow, and the surveyor and his road-gang have to
bring the new diggings into connexion with the markets of the Colony. The Governor
must act at once on his own responsibility, and be able to rely with confidence on the
passing of a supplementary Appropriation Act, to give a legal sanction to the unforeseen
expenditure. Fourthly, because our population of Indians is in a proportion of about
ten to one of ourselves. They will now obey the great white chief. They understand
no division of authority. Lastly, because every one in British Columbia, Americans,
even more than English, see the necessity of, and wishes for a strong government. All!
like the power to be mainly vested in one man, responsible to public opinion, and are \
averse to the professional politician. For the Colonies, if united, I would recommend
an adherence to the principles of the legislative constitution of British Columbia, rather
than to those of that conferred on Vaucouver Island. I would, however, have a much
larger proportionate infusion of the popular element than we at present possess.
24. Her Majesty has by Order in Council created a body authorized to make laws for
British Columbia. It consists of 15 members, exclusive of the Governor, with whom it
is optional to take his seat as a member of the Board, or to keep aloof, and by so doing
constitute himself an entirely separate branch ofthe Legislature. One-third of the Council
is composed of the under-mentioned public officers, who are, by a separate instrument,
constituted likewise the Governor's Executive Council:—
1. The Colonial Secretary,
2. The Attorney General,
3. The Treasurer,
4. The Surveyor General,
5. The Collector of Customs.
The remaining two-thirds are selected by the Governor, but I believe that a Despatch
from the Duke of Newcastle directs that five of the ten shall be chosen from the
magistracy of the Colony, and that in the appointment of the other five the Governor
shall endeavour to be guided by the wishes of the people as signified in five distinct
districts. Under this constitution the Government can command a majority of votes, \
but the power has been rarely exercised by me, save in cases where demands were made I
upon the Colony by the Imperial Treasury, which the Legislature, if not coerced, would
have rejected.
25. I would wish to make some observations upon the three divisions of the present
Council. The five executive members are in such close communication with the
Governor, that it is but rarely that one of them has an opportunity of asserting his
independence by a vote against a measure introduced by the Government. Hence,
however useful as men of business in the House, they do not, with the public, possess
the same character for independence as the other two classes. I would recommend that
in  the new Legislature for the united Colonies   the   strictly official element be not
26. Probably in British Columbia the section of the Legislature which possesses most
the confidence of the people is that of the magistrates. It is the right of the Governor
to change the stations of the paid justices of the peace whenever he shall see occasion
for doing so, therefore, the best men are always selected for the most important trusts.
As the winter closes most of the miners' operations, several of the magistrates can be
spared to attend the meetings of the Legislative Council in New Westminster.
The under-mentioned districts are represented in this manner :—
1. New Westminster.
2. The Kootenay Gold Mines in the Rocky Mountains.
3. The Gold  Mines of Cariboo, nearly 500 miles north-east of New
4. The agricultural, and now mining district of Lillooet.
5. The  pastoral  and mining  country intersected  by  the Columbia,
bounded on the south by the American frontier.
27. The country magistrates, whose salaries are not sufficient to enable tliem to enjoy
any of the luxuries of life in the expensive districts in which they are stationed, live in
• the  manly state of freedom of intercourse with all classes, characteristic of British
Columbian  society.     The  magistrates  at  the  mines,
at  the
hundreds of miles from head-
m 40
nine seats
quarters, are necessarily invested with duties of great variety and importance. The
representative of the Government, the sole referee or judge m mining disputes, gold
commissioner, bankruptcy commissioner, county court judge, the magistrate is constantly before the public. The smallness of the police force which we can allow to
carry'out his decisions, and to preserve tranquillity, compels him to rely much upon his
personal influence. It gives me great satisfaction to say that under these circumstances
a body of public officers has been trained, equally respected by the people and the
Government. The miner looks upon the departure of the magistrate for his legislative
duties with fully as much of happy confidence as he does on that of the men he has
assisted in returning to the House.
28. I would propose in the new constitution to increase the number of these valuable
legislators from five to nine. I would submit that the present discretionary power
resident in the Governor of making his selection from the centres of population, for the
time being, be not interfered with ; nor would I withdraw the liberty granted to him by
the Duke of Newcastle to appoint, should he see fit, unpaid in the place of paid
I. venture to submit a plan for a distribution, in the first instance, of the
1. Victoria, V. I.
2. New Westminster, B.C.
3. Cariboo, B.C.
4. Kootenay or Columbia, B.C.
5. Douglas and Lillooet, B.C.
6. Osoyoos and Southern Frontier, B.C.
7. Nanaimo, V.I.
8. Yale and Lytton, B.C.
9. Comox or Cowitchen, V.I.
It will be said that this is not a fair distribution; six magistrates for British Columbia,
three for Vancouver Island. I reply that the former Colony now supports nine paid
justices of the peace, the latter only two. My plan would entail the exclusion of three
Columbian magistrates and the creation of one, for legislative purposes, upon the island.-
29. The Duke of Newcastle directed the Governor to consult the wishes of the people
in the appointment of one-third of the Legislative Councillors. My predecessor divided
the Colony into five electoral districts :
1. New Westminster.
2. Cariboo East.
3. Cariboo West.
4. Yale and Lytton.
5. Douglas and Lillooet.
The mode of ascertaining the popular desire is as follows :—A letter is written by command of the  Governor to the paid magistrate of the district, directing him to call a
meeting of the inhabitants to select a person for a seat in the Council.    Due notice of
the meeting is given in the Gazette, and locally by the magistrate.    Seats in the Legislative Council are eagerly contended for.    Electioneering addresses issue from the rival
candidates, and sometimes very considerable expense is incurred.    Great discretion is
left with the magistrate and people of the district as to the votes which shall be accepted
and reported to the Governor.    In New Westminster, I believe, in consequence of a
feeling to that effect, aliens have abstained from voting; but in Cariboo, and I think
other inland districts, every man who comes forward may record a vote, unless he be an
Indian or a Chinaman.    Indeed, I believe there are cases where some Chinese have been
! allowed to vote.    It meets with my approval that so long as a strong English Government exists in New Westminster, no disqualification on account of nationality should
exist at the gold mines.    I hold it as extremely desirable that we should know the real
interests and feelings of our many alien immigrants.   That we should attach them to our
institutions, and that, as we govern by moral force alone, not costing the mother country
a soldier or a shilling, we should have among our Legislators men responsible to alien as
well as English constituents.    I like to hear any grievance which the American miner
may imagine he suffers from in Cariboo disposed of, as now, by the remark, " Wait for the
I next election."    In the agricultural districts likewise I wish aliens to take part in the
elections.    Lytton, probably, does not contain a  dozen English unofficial inhabitants.
The farmers on the Thompson and Upper Fraser are many of them French.    The hotel
keepers throughout the Colony mostly belong to that nation or to the Italian.    The
time has not yet arrived for me to consider whether, the Chinaman or Indian should be OF BRITISH COLUMBIA AND VANCOUVER ISLAND.
allowed to vote at the elections.    I should be disposed to exclude both.    Possibly an
exception might be made in favour of those who took out their " free miner's certificates."
30. The election over,  the magistrate reports to the Governor the number of votes t
each candidate has received.    It is by no means incumbent on the Governor to appoint
to the Council the elect of the people, but it would require very special circumstances
such as have not yet presented themselves, to justify his rejection of tbe man placed at
. the head of the poll.    The Councillor must take the oath of allegiance before his seat.
A purely English Legislature is thus secured.
31. Even if union is not to take place, I should wish to see the popular element
increased in our Legislative Council. It is by gradual concessions, freely made by the
Government, that the desire for institutions practically unsuited to British Columbia will
be best kept under. It is in the gold mines that I should specially desire to see the
•representation increased. If the union of the Colonies should take place, I would suggest
that about 12 members of the new Legislature should be appointed by the Governor
on the recommendation of the people. If the Colonies remain separate I will address you
at a future time respecting British Columbia. I must repeat the recommendation I
ventured to make when treating ofthe magisterial element, that the discretionary power
of the Governor, as to the districts to be represented, should remain unimpaired. I,
however, submit a rough suggestion as to the first apportionment of seats.
Victoria, V. I.    -
New WTestminster, B. C.
Nanaimo, V. I.   -
Comox, V. I.      -
Cariboo, East, B. C.
Cariboo, West, B. C.      -
Kootenag, B. C.
Yale and Lytton, B. C. -
Douglas and Lillooet, B. C.
Williams' Lake, B. C.
Osoyoos and Columbia, B. C.
2 members.
As regards the electoral franchise, in the first instance, I would propose to leave the
question as it now rests in the several districts. It might be dealt with hereafter by the
Council. A property qualification and English nationality would, I believe, be required
in the electors of Vancouver Island.
32. I think it would be desirable that the Governor should have the power of appointing
two unofficial members of the Legislative Council to the Executive Council.
33. Should union take place in the manner contemplated by the Act of the 21 & 22
Vict., two important changes would take place in the condition of Vancouver Island.
Its  present legislative constitution would be abolished.    The partial exemption from
import duties would cease.    The loss of the House of Assembly would not, I think, be
much regretted.    The freedom of the port of Victoria has already been much impaired,
duties being now levied on many articles of consumption.    There is a certain charm in
the idea of a free English port on the Pacific destined to compete with San Francisco,
and, perhaps, ultimately to establish a commercial pre-eminence for Great Britain on the
western coast of America.    But in reality few of the advantages expected from the
free  port  system have been secured,  and  the people  of Victoria,  having the issue
fairly placed before them at the last elections, have, by a large majority, determined
that the system shall cease, and a tariff take its place.    Victoria does not lie on any of
the great highways of commerce, and I do not suppose that a vessel ever entered the port
which was not specially bound for it on the commencement of the voyage.   Besides, if the
freedom of the ports had realized the expectations of the people of Victoria, would they
now be in so gloomy a state, or ready to make any sacrifice to secure union with British
Columbia ?   The last statistical returns show that ofthe imports to Vancouver Island only
one-twelfth is exported to countries other than the neighbouring British Colony.   It may
be said that smuggling is carried on to a great extent.   Possibly so, but I doubt whether
this advantage, of somewhat questionable propriety, counterbalances the inconvenience
of the restrictions placed on British commerce in the western states of America.    The
compulsion on every vessel to or from Puget's Sound to enter or clear at Port Angelos,
40 (?) miles to windward, is I know found a serious evil in British Columbia.    The
ships entering the Columbia or Golden Gate from Victoria are examined, I believe, with
a minuteness and suspicion not exercised on other traders.    The collector of customs of
California informed me that the commercial transactions of the British and American
territories on the Pacific will never be conducted on an entirely satisfactory condition so
G 42
Hlf p
. Island.
long as we
look to the evasion of the United States laws as one of our regular sources
of profit. Reciprocity, such as that existing between the eastern Colonies and the
States, would be most valuable to us; but we cannot hope to obtain it under a system
which'contemplates the flooding, if possible, of the neighbouring territories with smuggled
goods. Finally, British Columbia cannot receive unto herself a community which declines
to share equally in her taxation. Victoria might retain nearly all her advantages as a
distributing port, by the establishment of bonded warehouses, and the allowing of a drawback on all merchandise, over a certain value, passing out of the Colony.
34. In the event of union taking place, a question which will locally excite some
interest is as to the seat of Government. Victoria is the largest town of the two Colonies,
and is, in many respects, the most agreeable place of residence. I think, however, that
in seekino- union with British Columbia, Vancouver Island relinquishes all claim to the
posse ssion within her limits of the seat of Government. New Westminster has been
chosen as the capital of British Columbia, and it would not be fair to the reluctant
Colony to deprive her of the Governor and staff of officers. Both these towns are'
inconveniently situated on an angle of the vast British territory; but New Westminster,
on the mainland, has the advantage over the island town. It is already the centre of the
telegraphic system, and is in constant communication with the upper country, whereas
the steamers to Victoria only run twice a week.      ?he seat of Government should be on
the mainland; whether it might not, w]th advantage, be
hereafter nearer to the
gold mines, is a question for the future.
35. Unmixed advantages would accrue from the amalgamation of the Supreme Courts
of the two Colonies. There would be abundance of work for the judges now presiding
in each Colony.
36. It is premature for me to address you respecting the disposal of the public officers
who might be thrown out of employment on the union of the two Colonies.
37. I have now endeavoured to lay before you a scheme for the consolidation of British
power and interest on the Pacific, and for the suppression of the lamentable antagonism
existing between some of our fellow-subjects on that ocean. I am well aware that there
are conflicting interests which I cannot hope to reconcile. The way of pleasing all parties
has not been discovered. The old system of union under a common Governor resident
in Victoria broke down. The new one of entire separation seems intolerable to the
politicians of Vancouver Island. Whether the arrangements I now suggest would be
acceptable to the Colonists I am much inclined to doubt. Victoria would probably
expect better terms, and British Columbia only wishes to be left alone.
38. In a consideration of any suggestion I now venture to lay before you, I beg for
the indulgence which a letter written abroad, without access to official papers, may fairly
I have &c.
No. 15. No. 15.
Copy of a DESPATCH from the Officer administering the Government to the Right
Hon. Edward Cardwell, M.P.
(No. 16). New Westminster, March 3, 1866.
K   SlR'       tit I (Received May 14, 1866.)
/ 1 have the honour to forward a petition addressed to Her Majesty by certain
merchants, miners, and others resident in British Columbia.
2. The petition to which the signatures are attached was drawn up in Victoria in
February 1865.    Printed copies were very freelv distributed, placarded on every wall
and left for signature at every public house.    After a lapse of more than twelve months
1 the petition has been presented to me for transmission, bearing the signatures of 445
j persons out of a white population estimated at 6,000, although every opportunity has
been afforded, and I may say, some pressure has been brought to bear on the inhabitants
as well as the migratory population, to swell the number of petitioners.
The result of this attempt to foster discontent has thus proved a complete failure
3. The arguments used to arrive at a calculation ofthe taxation of the Colony in 1865
are so fallacious as hardly to require explanation at length, more especially as the
gentlemen who formed the deputation, on presenting the petition, stated to me that they
were satisfied the calculations were incorrect, and that their only object in now presenting
the petition rested m their desire for the union of the two Colonies ° OF BRITISH COLUMBIA AND VANCOUVER ISLAND.
4. I regret I am unable to furnish accurate statistics to refute the statement that the
Chinese and Indian population " contribute in a very small proportion to the general
j revenue," but I fully agree with the remarks made by the Chief Magistrate of this
district in a letter, copy of which I enclose, that a very large share of the taxation is
borne by these two races.
5. As regards the one object of the petition—the desire for union of this Colony and
Vancouver Island,—I am convinced from the information I received during my recent
tour in the interior, that the people of the upper country care little whether there be
union of the Colonies, or continued separation, and a petition of opposite effect to the
one now forwarded would be signed by at least an equal number of the resident population.
I have, &c.
The Right Hon. Edward Cardwell, M.P., (Signed)    ARTHUR N. BIRCH.
&c. &c. &c.
3d. March 1866.
Enclosure 1 in No-. 15.
To Her Most Gracious Majesty, Victoria, Queen of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland
and the Colonies thereunto belonging, Defender of the Faith, &c, &c.
The humble Petition of the undersigned Merchants, Miners, Traders, Farmers, Packers, and others
resident in British Columbia.
Humbly sheweth:
That your petitioners having expended a very large amount of capital and labour in exploring
and developing the resources of the Colony, are deeply interested in its welfare and success.
That in the absence of any reasonable expectations of a commensurate increase in the population or
in the •wealth of the country, to justify new burdens, they view with alarm the great increase in the
amount of taxation proposed to be raised this year.
That your petitioners estimate the resident population of British Columbia during the winter months,
exclusive of the Chinese and Indian, who contribute in a very small prop rtion to the general revenue,
at about 4,000 persons, and the summer population, leaving the Kootenay district out of calculation, j
regarding which they have no accurate information, at about 7,000 persons, and by averaging these
figures, they arrive at 5,500 as the mean population ofthe country.
In making any calculation of revenue or population, they are led to look upon the prospects of
Kootenay as too problematical to be taken into consideration in allotting the average share of the
general revenue which will be required from each individual resident in the older districts. There
may be, for a week or two, 3,000 or 4,000 persons at these mines, and there may not be as many
hundreds a few weeks later. Again, the licence fees and duties collected at the boundary line may
give a handsome surplus, or they may not exceed the expenses incurred in collection.
"That the revenue of British Columbia from ordinary sources is estimated at 153,615/., or 271. 18s. 6d.
per head, as against 110,877/. in 1863, when the mean population could not have been less than 6,500
persons, the number of licence fees issued to free miners in that year being 4,066, consequently the
proportion of taxation falling upon each individual did not exceed 171. 12s.
The total receipts for the present year, in aid of revenue, including balance of loan for making
roads, bridges, and streets, are estimated at 230,255/., and the expenditure for 1865 is estimated at
240,525/., or 43?. 14s. 7\d., while that of 1863 was only 147,598?., and allowing for the more numerous
population, was only at the rate of 22/. 14*. \\d., or slightly more than one-half.
That this great increase in the burdens of a young country already heavily taxed, and with
a reduced population, must necessarily fall injuriously on the miner, who has to labour in the most
inhospitable region of the Colony. Further, the climate of Cariboo is such that general mining
operations are confined to about four months in the year; and it is only from the profits of this short
season that the miner can accumulate the means of living during the winter, and providing funds to
meet the demands which the Government makes upon him in the forms of a tariff, road tolls, licence,
recording, and other fees, and a heavy tax upon his gold.
That while your petitioners are fully aware of their obligation to contribute towards the support of
the Government which affords them protection, and which they have hitherto done without complaint,
they cannot help expressing their conviction that so large an increase of expenditure as is contemplated
this year under the head of civil list, &c, is out of all proportion to the number of the producing
population. The total amount of salaries, &c, voted in 1865 being 42,317/., against 28,590/. in 1863,
and with the further sum of 4,825/. for travelling expenses, the total for this year is over 47,000/.
That your petitioners believe that there are gold fields of vast wealth within the boundaries of
British Columbia undiscovered, and which will employ a large population in their developm'ent, but
these will require energy, industry, and enterprize to bring to light, and your petitioners believe that
when added to the natural difficulties, there are fresh, unnecessary, and vexatious taxes imposed upon
the miners who are the mainstay of the country, this industrious class will become discouraged and
turn their steps to the neighbouring gold fields of Washington territory, Oregon, and California.
That your petitioners are fully convinced of the necessity of legislative union between British
Columbia and Vancouver Island, on fair and equitable terms. That the accomplishment of this event
as soon as practicable is an indispensable requisite for the progress and prosperity of both.
The following are some of the reasons which have lead your petitioners to take this view of the
relative position of the two Colonies:—
The mean population of the Colony of Vancouver Island cannot be computed at less than 7,500
Encl. 1 in
No. 15.



Encl. 2 in
No. 15.
pitedns, and this number added'tb fihat of British Columbia gives 13,900 as the united population of
the two Qojonie£. r.If the ordinary revenue of eaph were added together, and the taxationjaflotted fairly
amongst i£e inh^jsfljnts of both Colonies, it would so far equalize the weight of the present burdens, as
to reduce the sliffire of the miners of British Columbia by at least 10/. a year.
There^woulaoe nothing unjustfin such a redisWrbtrtion ofthe burde'ns'of the State, as the people of
Vancouver Island partake of the prosperity of the miners of Cariboo quite as much as the inhabitants
of British Colrftftl5fa.iC
iffljfhe uniqn of i$fa tEKO Cglppijesiwould altffyjfcty&f the (fivil lists, which are now bearing heavily 09
toth couhteieliaff^iee,staff of officials will be lessened, and only one central Government would be
The people of Vancouver Island have expressed thei£ Willingness to unite with the sister Colony,
and :i#hen your pe$rt!i6ndf& consider the proximity of the two countries, and their mutual dependenoiea
upon each other, they cannot but believe that protracted separation will militate against the best iqtfse^t$
of both, and weaken British&nfluenfcelin this portion of the Empire.
Your petitioner^ jiherefore humbly pray that your m<|sfe<3rraoious Majesty,mav£>e pleased to takersuch
steps as are necessary for an immediate reduction o!F the expenditure for this Colony, and for an early
union of British Columbia and Vancouver Island under one government.
And your petitioners as in duty bound will ever pray, &c.
—     Signed by 445 persons.
'Enclosure 2 in Np. 15,
to I oT
The Magistrate, New Westminster, to His Honour A. N. Birch.
My dear Mr. Birch, New Westminster, March 3, 1866.
I have made many inquiries, but I find it almost impossible to ascertain with any approach to
accuracy the proporacm $f exciseable articles used and consumed by the Indians in the Golonyi . There
are I believe about 10,000 Indians on Fraser River, and all of them in greater or lesser quantities use
and consume exciseable articles.
Many of the young men spend as much as £300 a year. The Indians now use almost everything
used by .white men,njbut the chief ^commoditieStwhich they purchase are blankets, flour,! rea, coffee'
sugar, molasses,,b^ujis, dried apples, gunpowder, shot, muskets, axes, simple agricultural implements,
verm^pja/toySj.ppeap ornaments, and male and female wearing apparel.
, Tel the best shojfSjix^this town J-am informed that the Indian women buy more dresses and finery
than the white people of the place.
A great number of the Indians from the United States territory come here to procure their
I am vang. sorry that I. cannot afford you more precise information on this subject; but of this you may
feel a^mjie^fhat a very large grbportion of the taxation is paid by thelndfan and Chine se population
oiTthe Colony
I have, &c.
(Signed)        C. Bre^.S

t,    LONDON*
Printed by E. Ei<ee and; W-iuAam. SpoitiswobDi",
Printers to the Queen's most ExcellenOdjalesty. ',
ForjBer Majesty's Stationery Offib'e.  


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