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The great gold fields of Cariboo; with an authentic description, brought down to the latest period, of… Hazlitt, William Carew, 1834-1913 1862

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In 1858, the present writer published a small
volume, entitled " British. Columbia and Vancouver Island," in which lie attempted to present to
English readers a full aud accurate account of the
new colony, so far as the knowledge obtained in
respect to its prospects and resources up to that, time
would allow. In the course of the last four or five
years, however, information on British Columbia
has been steadily accumulating, and the avidity
with which this has been received, shows unmis-
takeably the growing interest felt by the British
public on the subject. This abundance of fresh
knowledge, dispersed as it is through the columns
of the press, and in official and private letters,
imperatively calls for publication in a collective
shape, and it has prompted the writer to reject the
notion of bringing out a merely revised edition of
his former work, and to adopt the safer plan of
recasting his materials, embodying therewith a
carefully digested selection of all the reliable intelligence that has hitherto reached us: so that, 
in fact, the present volume may be regarded aa
virtually a new book.
Prosperous as has been the growth of the colony 1
since its establishment in 1858, it is more particularly within the last few months—in fact, since the
discovery of the Great Gold Fields of Cariboo,
that public attention has been drawn to this
quarter. So alluring have been the accounts furnished by returned diggers and others, of the almost
fabulous gains that have rapidly rewarded their
toil, in this new auriferous region, that a stream of
immigration has poured in, not only from our own
country and its dependencies, but from China, California, and other parts of the world.
The mineral wealth of this highly favoured land
is unquestionable : not only has it been found to
be the richest of gold-producing countries yet explored, but it contains treasures of almost equal
value in its vast coal fields. This latter soureen
of wealth and of commercial and industrial development promises indeed to raise the colony eventually
to the highest pitch of prosperity. Yictoria, the
capital of Vancouver Island, may therefore fairly
hope one day to become the Liverpool of the Pacific
British Columbia has, however, attractions for-
other immigrants besides miners and diggers. Owing
to its salubrious climate, the fertility of the soil, and
the abundance of its rivers, it is evidently destined
to become, as its population increases, a great agricultural district; and there can be no doubt that from m*^
this fortunate combination of advantages, farmers
would find there a lucrative field for their labours.
In proof of this opinion it may be stated, on good
authority, that the colony has " lost this year full
100,000£. simply through the want of agricultural
The facilities of transit have latterly been considerably increased, and will be found detailed in
this work, as well as every other kind of information
likely to be useful, or to interest the intending
emigrant; and we may predict that from the thousands now wending their wav to British Columbia,
the day is not very far distant when the completion
of the projected Inter-Colonial Railway will vastly
swell the tide of immigration, and accelerate the
development of England's newest, and probably her
most valuable dependency.
The map which accompanies the volume has been
made as complete as possible, and includes all the
latest discoveries.
W. C. H.
4, Powis Place, W.C.,
April 20th, 1862.  CONTENTS.
•Geography of British Columbia*—First Discovery of the
Coast hy the Spaniards—Hernando Cortez—Earliest
Operations of the English on the Coast—Voyage of
Drake—Later Discoveries—Voyages of Cook and
others—Discoveries of the Fur-traders—-Voyages of
Berkelev and Vancouver......
Euca's Strait—Mackenzie's Voyage (1789)—Frazer's
Voyage (1806)—Description of the Lake Scenery of
British Columbia—Rivers—Climate—Native Population—Language of the.Natives—Religion—Canoes
—Houses, &c.—Agricultural Resources of British
Columbia—Fisheries—Game, Wild Animals, &c.—
Currency of the District ......
Description of the Coast and Interior—The Soil—Timber—Goal—TheVancouver Coal-Mining Company just
estahlished—Indian "Women and Indian Babies—
Stock—Horses       .    * . .       .       •       .57 vrn
■ Various Routes to the Colony—Useful Directions for
the Outfit—What to take and what not to take—
Prices of Provisions—Female Emigration—"A Returned Digger" 77
'inter-Oceanic Railway—Red River—British "Columbia
Overland Transit Company—Gold in the Saskatchewan—Proposal for a Line of Electric Telegraph—^Phe
Gold Fields of Cariboo—Their Riches—Concurrent
Testimony on this Point—The Canadian and Local
Press      ..........
Extracts from Recent Official Despatches—Further
Extracts from the Local and Canadian Press and from
Correspondence—Extracts from the Times Letter of
March 25,1862—Remarks on the Letter—The Bishop
of Columbia's Journal    ......
I. Rules and Regulations for the Working of Gold
Mines, issued in conformity with the Gold Fields
Act, 1859	
II. The Law of Land Sales in the Colonies
III. An Act to Provide for the G-overnment of British
Columbia       ........
IV. Vocabulary of the " Chinook Jargon" .        ,
V. Government Emigration Officers in the United
Kingdom        ....        ....
VI. Extracts from a Vancouver Island Journal and
tbe Canadian News  ...
'•CHeography of British Columbia—First Discovery of the Coast
by the Spaniards—Hernando Cortez—Earliest Operations
of the English on the Coast—Voyage of Drake—Later Discoveries—Voyages of Cook and others—Discoveries of the
Fur-Traders—Voyages of Berkeley and "Vancouver.
Bbitish Columbia (formei-ly known as New Caledonia) comprises "all such territories within the
dominions of Her Majesty, as are bounded to the
south by the frontier of the United States of America, to the east by the main chain of the Rocky
Mountains, to the north by Simpson's River and
l the Pinlay branch of the Peace River, and to the
gayest by the Pacific Ocean." It also includes
Queen Charlotte's Islands, and all other islands
adjacent to these territories, with the exception,
until otherwise provided by the Queen in Council,
of Vancouver Island.
The region thus described in the Statute 21 and
22 of the Queen, cap. 99, s. 1, is the New Cah>
clonia which, as a district of the Columbia Deparfc-
ment of the Hudson's Bay territories, was classed
by that Company among their richest possessions.
While it was in their hands, it extended much
farther south ; at present, under the treaty of 1846,
its southern limit is at parallel 49° N, while its
northern boundary runs in about parallel 55°. It
is about 420 miles long in a straight line; its
average breadth is about 250 to 300 miles. Mea-
sured from corner to corner, its greatest length,
however, is 805 miles, and its greatest breadth 400
miles. Mr. Arrowsmith computes its area, including Queen Charlotte's Islands, at somewhat more
than 200,000 square miles. The denomination of
New Caledonia dates no earlier than the time of
Captain Cook; by Vancouver the coast between
parallels 45° and 50° was called New Georgia, and
that between 50° and 54° New Hanover. In 1806,
the North-West Company formed the first settlement
in this district ever made by British subjects, on a
small lake called, after the person by whom the expedition was headed, Frazer's Lake, and since that
time British traders have applied the designation
New Caledonia to the whole region extending from
48° to 56° 30', between the Rocky Mountains and
the sea.
These mountains, which are also known as the
Stony, and, more southerly, as the Oregon Mountains, form part of a lofty chain, which divides
North-Western America from the. other portions of
the continent, running continuously in a northwest direction, from the Mexican Andes to the COLUMBIA RIVER TERRITORY.
shores of the Arctic Ocean. Between this great
chain and the Pacific an ample territory lies, of
which the main breadth is loosely calculated at 500
miles. The northern portion, terminating at 54°
40' N, belongs, under treaties between Russia and
the United States of America in 1824, and between
Russia and Great Britain in the following year, to
Russia; the next portion, reaching a line drawn east
from the Gulf of Georgia south of Frazer's River
in parallel 49°, to the Rocky Mountains, belongs,
under the treaty of 1846, between the United
States and Great Britain, to the latter Power j
the remainder, so far as the Mexican frontier, has
been absorbed by the United States. In the negotiations which ensued upon the seizure of British
vessels in Nootka Sound, and terminated in the
Convention of the Escurial, the Spanish Government
designated this territory " the Coast of California,
in the South Sea;" but it has more recently been
known as the Oregon or Columbia River Territory.
There is no doubt that the earliest pioneers on
these coasts were the Spaniards. The Pacific Ocean
was discovered by Vasco Nunez de Balboa in the year
1513; Magellan's Strait, by Pernando Magalhaens,
in 1520. In the earlier part of 1532 the most
northerly point on the Western coast of America
occupied by the Spaniards was Culiacan, at the
entrance of the Gulf of California; beyond this
town, toward the North and West, the lands and seas
of North-Western America were wholly unexplored.
An expedition made by order of Cortez, under
the command of Mendoza and Mazuela, in 1532,
produced no result; but a second, under Grijalva
and Becerra, in 1533, discovered California, of whidk.
peninsula Cortez, on the 3rd May, 1535, took possession in the name of the King of Spain. The last
expedition despatched by Cortez was under the
command of Francesco de Ulloa, who sailed froitet
Acapulco on the 8th July, 1539 ; and who, having
first surveyed the shores of the Gulf of California,
and having thus ascertained that California was not
an island, proceeded northward, according toHerreri,
so far as the 28th parallel, and was lost. Other
writers, on the contrary, allege that Ulloa reached
the 30 th degree, and then returned safely to Mexiefe.
A maritime expedition despatched by Antonio
de Mendoza, in 1540, resulted in the discovery of
the Colorado River, and in the same year a region
identified by Mr. Greenhow as the beautiful district
now called Sonora, was acquired for the King of
Spain by an exploring force sent by Mendoza in that
direction, for the purpose of discovery and conquest.
The name is said to be a corruption of Senbra, by the
Spanish commander Coronado, in honour of the
Viceroy, who bore as a portion of his arms an -image
of Nuestra Senora de Buena Guia, " Our Lady of
Safe Conduct."
In June, 1542, two vessels started under Juan
Cabrillo from the port of Navidad in Xalisco. ©a-
brillo examined the coast of California as far north
as 37° 10', when he was driven back by a storm to
the island of San Bernardo, where he died.    His i
pilot, Ferrelo, continued his course northward.
Respecting the point which he succeeded in reaching, theretis some difference of opinion. Greenhow
contends that he proceeded as far as the present
d©ape Mondocino; while others, and Humboldt
among them, say that he discovered Cape Blanco in
43°. Cape Blanco afterward changed its name to
43ape Orford.
These explorations had been made by the Spaniards-by virtue of the papal bull, conferring on
Ferdinand and Isabella of Spain and their successors all the New World to the west of a meridian
Uine drawn a hundred leagues west of the Azores,
the other portion having been conferred by the
Holy Father on the Portuguese.    When England
^renounced her allegiance to Rome, she repudiated
calso the validity of this preposterous concession, and
.■asserted the right of Englishmen to navigate any
part of the ocean, to settle in any country not
occupied by another Christian nation, and to trade \
with   any  customers  who  desired to trade with-
In accordance with this policy, Sir Francis
Drake, sailing from Plymouth on the 13th December, 1577, with only five vessels, carried three of
these safely through the Straits of Magellan. A
r storm then dispersed the little squadron, and Drake
was left with only one schooner of 100 tons and
about sixty men, to prosecute his enterprise against
the whole power of Spain on the western coast of
I America.    The bold navigator persevered, however, BRITISH  COLUMBIA.
and realized immense booty. In the spring of
1579, apprehending that the Spaniards would intercept him if he should attempt to return through
Magellan's Straits, he resolved to seek a north-easterly passage from the Pacific to the Atlantic, by the
Straits of Anian, which, discovered by Gaspar Cor-
tereal, a Portuguese, in 1499, were long supposed to
connect the two oceans, and to be the north-westerly passage so much desired by European navigators. The most generally received opinion now is,
that the Straits of Anian are identical with Hudson s Strait, leading, not from the Atlantic to the
Pacific, but merely into Hudson's Bay.
Setting aside the question whether Drake found
New Georgia, or approached Fuca's Straits, it is
indisputable that he discovered and appropriated, as
English territory, the region extending along the
coast, between latitude 43° and 48° j and bestowed
upon it the name of New Albion.
In 1776, Parliament offered a reward of £20,000
to the discoverer of any practicable passage by sea:
between the Atlantic and the Pacific oceans, in any
direction or parallel of the northern hemisphere
north of the 52nd degree of latitude.    Captain,
Cook, who  had lately returned from his second
voyage of circumnavigation, offered to conduct thjg?
mission of discovery; and two vessels were placed,
under his command for the purpose.
The instructions given to Cook were to proceed
by way of the Cape of Good Hope, New Zealand,
and Otaheite, to the coast of New Albion; there ■NTS
he was to put into the first convenient port to obtain wood, water, and refreshments, and thence to
proceed northward along the coast to the latitude
of 65 degrees, where he was to begin his search for
"-'such rivers or inlets as might appear to be of considerable extent, and pointing toward Hudson's or
Baffin's Bay, should he find a passage of that description."
Cook sailed from Plymouth on the 12th of July,
1776, in the Resolution, followed by the Discovery,
under Captain Charles Clarke, who joined him at
the Cape of Good Hope. They arrived in sight of
the north-western coast of America on the 7th
March, 1778, near 44°, about two hundred miles
north of Cape Mendocino. For several days, Cook
was prevented from advancing northward by contrary winds, which forced him one hundred miles in
the opposite Course; but he was ultimately enabled
to examine partially a large extent of coast, and to
detesmine with greater accuracy than had been
hitherto attempted the longitude of that part of
America. The weather at length permitting, he
took the desired direction ; and running rapidly
northward, at some distance from the land, he was
on the 22nd March opposite a projecting point of
the continent, a little beyond the 48th parallel, to
"v^Mch he gave the name of Cape Flattery, in token'
of the improvement in his prospects.
The navigators then sailed north-westward,
■doubled a projection of the land, named by them
Point Breakers, from the violence of the surf break- BRITISH COLUMBIA.
ing on it, and found immediately beyond a spacious
bay, opening into the Pacific, in the latitude of 49^
degrees. Into this bay they sailed, and anchored
on its northern side, at the distance of ten miles
from the sea, in a safe and commodious harbour,
which they called Friendly Cove.
i From the number of articles of iron and brass
found among these people, one of whom had moreover two silver spoons of Spanish manufacture
hanging round his neck as ornaments—from thfeir
manifesting no surprise at the sight of his ships, and
not being startled at the report of his guns, and
from the strong inclination to trade exhibited
by them, Cook was at first inclined to suppose that
the place had been visited by vessels of civilized
nations before his arrival. He, however, became
convinced by his inquiries and observations during
his stay that this was by no means probable. The
iron and brass might, be conceived, have been
brought from Canada or Hudson's Bay, and the
silver spoons from Mexico; and he imputed the
indifference of the natives respecting the ships to
their natural indolence of temper and want of
On his arrival in this bay Cook had christened
it "King George's Sound;" but afterwards he
found that it was called Nootka by the natives* by
which name it has accordingly ever since been
known. The bay is situated on the south-western
side of Vancouver Island, whicli was, till 1770j.
supposed to be part of the American continent; •COOKS  EXPLORATIONS.
and it communicates with the Pacific by two openings, the more southerly of which,. the only one
affording a passage for large vessels, lies under the
parallel of 49° 33'.
On the 1st of May, Cook saw the land about the
55th parallel; and on the following day he passed
under 57° near the beautiful conical mountain,
known since Bodega's time (1775) as Mount San
Jacinto. The name of the peak was changed to
Movant Edgecumb by Cook, who also gave the name
ot Bay of the Islands to the Port Remedios of the
Spaniards on its northern side.
After leaving these places, the English observed
a wide opening on the east, called by them Cross
Sound, and beyond it a very high mountain, which
they denominated Mount Fadrweather. The latter
was situated near the 59 th parallel, and they had
consequently advanced farther north than the
Spaniards or any other navigators had proceeded
from the south along that coast, and were entering
upon the theatre of Russian enterprise. Although
Spanish navigators may have seen portions of the
i;coast of North America between the limits of 43°
and 55° prior to his visit, their observations had been
too cursory and vague to lead to any practical result;
■stand to Cook belongs, beyond doubt, the credit of
having first ascertained the true extent of the
American and Asiatic continents, and their proximity to each other.
On the return of the expedition to England
(October, 1780), it became known that there was 10
abundance of animals with fine furs on the northwest coast of America, and that there was a large
opening for the fur trade in China; for the ships,
on their return to England after the deaths of Cook
and Clarke, had put into Canton, and found a
ready market for the skins collected by the crews,
to the amount of 10,000 dollars. The Russians had
promptly availed themselves of information on the
subject acquired from Captain King, and an association was formed among the fur merchants of
Siberia and Kamtschatka to open a trade with the
shores of the American continent. By this association various trading posts were established in
1783, between Eliaska and Prince William's Sound;
and in 1788 other Russian settlements had extended
themselves as-'far as Admiralty Bay, at the foot of
Mount Elias. Since that time the Russian frontier
lias advanced to the coast of Queen Charlotte's
The publication, however, of the journals of
Cook's expedition in 1784-5 brought other Powers
into these seas. La Perouse, on leaving his country
for the Pacific in 1785, was specially instructed "to
explore the parts of the north-west coasts of America
which had not been examined by Cook, and of
which the Russian accounts furnished no idea, in
order to obtain information respecting the fur trade
and also to learn whether in those unknown parts
some river or internal sea might not be found communicating with Hudson's Bay or Baffin's Bay."
But the   geography  of  North-Western America
gained little by this movement; for of the three
months passed by La Perouse on the coast, one-
third was spent at anchor in a bay at the foot of
Mount Fairweather, and the remainder in visiting various points of the coast as far south as
It is remarkable that Cook, though he made
diligent search for the Strait of Fuca, was not successful in discovering it, and that that honour was
reserved for Berkeley. The Strait of Juan de Fuca,
through which that navigator himself was believed
in Cook's time to have sailed from the Pacific into
the Atlantic, in 1592, has an average width of
eleven miles, and runs from the Pacific into the Gulf
of Georgia. It is, says Pemberton, free from sunken
rocks or shoals; its direction is eastward for about
seventy miles to its junction with the channels
which lead by a northerly course into the Gulf of
Georgia, which separates Vancouver's Island from
the continent. "The approach," continues the
same writer, " is safe for all descriptions of vessels, being liable to no other dangers than those
incidental to gales from the S.E., which, with considerable intervals of tranquil weather, are in winter
not uncommon, and to fogs, or rather dense smoke,
arising from forests on fire in autumn; although
in the latter case soundings are a safeguard,.and
good anchorage can generally be found within a
mile of either shore."
"The facility of entering and navigating this
strait has been greatly increased by the erection of 12
lighthouses on the south shore by the United States
Government, and on the north by the British. That
at Cape Flattery stands 162 feet above the sea, and
in clear weather the light can be seen distinctly 20
nriles off. New Dungeness is 100 feet high, and
has a fog-bell attached to the lighthouse."
When Cook's journals were given to the world,
the British trade in the Pacific was divided between
two great corporate bodies, each of which possessed
peculiar and exclusive privileges, secured by Act of
Parliament. Thus, no British subjects, except those
in the service or bearing the licence of the South
Sea Company, Avere in a position to make expeditions for trade or fishery, by way of Cape Horn or
Magellan's Straits, to any part of the western coast
of America, or the seas and islands within three
hundred leagues of it: while no British subjects, not employed or licensed by the East India
Company, could proceed for either of those purposes
around the Cape of Good Hope to any seas or lands
east of that point, between it and Magellan's Strains.;
with the provision, however, that the privileges conferred on the East India Company should not be
considered as interfering with those previously
granted to the other association. All British vessels
found trading or fishing contrary to the Acts by
which these privileges were conferred, became liable
to confiscation, and the persons directing such expeditions exposed themselves to the risk of heavy
The next discoveries worthy of note made-afte* DISCOVERIES OF DIXON—DUNCAN—MEARES.    13
Cook's voyage were those of Captains Poitlock
and Dixon, in the service of the King Georges
Sound Company, which aimed at monopolizing the
trade between the North Pacific coasts and China;
Portlock and Dixon left England in August, 1785,
and reached Cook's River in July, 1786. Dixon
claimed the discovery of the land between the 54th
and 52nd degrees of latitude, on the ground that it
had not been seen by Cook, though it is specially
marked on the chart of that navigator as found by
the Spaniards in 1775; and having become convinced from the reports of the natives that this
land was separated from the American coniinset
by water, he bestowed on it the name of Queen
Cliarldtles Islands, and on the passage immediately
north of it that of Dixon's Entrance.
In the year subsequent to thisrexpeditiou, Capi»
tain Duncan, commanding the Princess Royal, ascertained the already assumed separation of Queen
Charlotte's Islands from the mainland, and discovered the group now known as the Princess
Royal's Archipelago.
In 1788, Meares, in the Felice, accompanied by
Captain Douglas in the Iphigenla, continued Ids
examination as far latitude 49° 37', after
which he retraced his progress, and on reaching the
Strait Df Juan de Fuca, took possession of it, with
the usual ceremonies, in the name of the King of
Great Britain.
In 1787, Captain Berkeley, commanding a vessel
called the Imperial Eagle, discovered immediately 14
north of Cape Flattery, between 48° and 49°, a
broad arm of the sea, stretching eastward from the
Pacific. To this passage Captain Meares in the
following year gave the appellation of Fuca's Straits,
in commemoration of the old Greek pilot, whose
story is so well known. Berkeley did not, however, explore the passage.
The United States now began to engage actively
in the trade of the North Pacific, and the voyages
made on this account were the origin of the Oregon
question, which led to the Treaty of 1846. In
1789, an American trader, named Gray, sailed
round the islands now named Queen Charlotte's, and
gave them the name of his sloop, Washington; he
afterwards entered the Strait of Juan de Fuca, and
sailed in it east-south-east for fifty miles. In 1790,
the Spaniards having previously taken possession of
Nootka and the coast generally, two vessels, the
Discovery and the Chatham, under the command of
Captain Vancouver and Lieutenant Broughton, were
despatched on the authority of a convention with
the Spaniards, to receive the cession of the territory
from their officers in the Pacific, although, in point
of fact, the cession was not finally made till March,
1795. Prior to their arrival on the coast in 1792,
the Spaniards had made progress in ascertaining the
character of the Strait of Juan de Fuca; one of
their officer's, Lieutenant Quimper, having, in 1791,
proceeded to its eastern limit, and ascertained the
position of the principal openings of the coast in
that direction, though it does not appear that he GRAY—rVANCOUVER—BROUGHTON.
entered them. In the autumn of the same year
Captain Gray, in the Columbia, visited the more
northern coasts, and explored a canal in latitude
54° 33', which is supposed to have been that
afterwards named by Vancouver, Portland Canal;
in the spring, he discovered Bullfinches' or Gray's
Harbour, between the Strait of Fuca and Columbia River, in latitude 46° 58', and the day
following entered the mouth of that river, and sailed
up it about ten miles,' from whence he proceeded in
boats fifteen miles further, and after some delay
succeeded in his endeavour to get to sea. He gave
it the name it now bears
On the 1st of May, 1792, Vancouver and Broughton left Cape Flattery, and sailed slowly along the
coast in an easterly direction about a hundred iniles,.
until, reaching the extreme point to which it extended eastward, they entered the harbour, already
known as Port Quadra, to which they gave the new
name of Port Discovery. At a short distance beyond
Port Discovery, the navigators found another, opening in the coast toward the south, corresponding to-
Qjiimper's Canal de Caamano, through which they
entered an extensive arm of the sea with several
branches, stretching in various southerly directions.
On this arm they bestowed the name of Admiralty Inlet; its western branch was called Hood's
Canal; its eastern, Possession Sound; while the
southern received the appellation of Puget's Sound?
and all having undergone a minute survey, the
navigators were in a position to deny the possi- -.      . '       -   •
bility  of reaching  the  continent  through   these
After this examination of the coast in an easterly
direction, the navigators proceeded to take possession, in the name of the King of England, of all
that part of New Albion, from 39° 20' south latitude, and 236° 26' east longitude, to the entrance
of the inlet, supposed to be the Strait of Juan de
Fuca, as also of all the coasts, islands, &c, within
the said strait, and on both its shores; and this
territory they christened in honour of his Majesty,
New Georgia.
On their return to the Strait of Fuca., Vancouver
and Broughton proceeded through one of the inter-
insular channels opening into that strait' nearly
opposite Admiralty Inlet, into a long and wide
gulf, having its course in a north-westerly direction ;
and pursuing their way for a few days toward the
close of the same month, they fell in with the
Spaniards, who had sailed from Nootka, on the
very day (June 4) on which the English were
entering into occupation of New Georgia. It was
during the three weeks that the two expeditions
remained in company that the shores of the newly
explored gulf, of which we have spoken as opening
into the Strait of Fuca opposite Admiralty Inlet,
were surveyed by Vancouver and his associates.
The discovery received from Vancouver the name
of the Gulf of Georgia. This gulf was found to extend north-westward as far as 50° : but the leading1
result of their explorations had been to enforce the
conviction that no such passage existed. i
The Spaniards, who had separated from Vancouver and Broughton, arrived • at Nootka on the
?4tk September. Having carefully compared their
' chaits exhibiting the result of their respective
voyages through the Strait of Fuca, the British
commander came to an understanding with Quadra,
that the island, which was divided from the continent by that channel, should henceforth bear the
name of the Island of Quadra and Vancouver. But
it is now known as Vancouver Island.
I 18
Fuca's Strait—Mackenzie's Voyage (1789)—Frazer's Voyage
(1806)—Description of the Lake Scenery of British Columbia—Bivers—Climate—Native Population—Language of
the Natives—Beligion — Canoes—Houses, &c.—Agricultural Resources of British Columbia—Fisheries—Game,
"Wild Animals, &c.—Currency of the District.
The coast of North-Western America, north of the
Columbia or Oregon River, is everywhere penetrated by inlets and bays, and along it are thousands of islands, many of them extensive, lying
singly or in groups, separated from each other and
from the continent by narrow intricate channels.
The entire length of this coast is, as already observed, bordered by the Rocky Mountains, which,
having their northern extremity in the Arctic
Ocean, lat. 70° N, long. 140° W., run nearly
S.S.E., parallel with the coast, sending out, at
different places, spurs and buttresses, and dividing
the rivers that flow into the Atlantic from those
that flow into the Pacific.
Mount Browne, 16,000, and Mount Hooker,
15,700 feet high, are two of the loftiest peaks of
these mountains. ■
The range of intermediate hills between the
Rocky Mountains and. the sea is called the Cascade
From Protection Island, says Vancouver, commences the maritime importance of the territory,
with as fine a harbour as any in the world. In
addition to the roadstead, which, protected by the
island before named, affords secure anchorage in
deep water without rock or shoal, the harbour
itself extends above nine miles inland in a partly
winding direction north and south, with an average
width of something less than two miles, shoaling
from thirty-six fathoms at one-half its length, to
twenty-eight and three-quarters, and thence gradually to seven at its extremity, where it receives the
'waters of a considerable stream.
The northern arm of the straits commences in
-&T1 archipelago of small islands, well wooded and
fertile, but generally without water. In one of
them, however, Vancouver found good anchorage,
though exposed to the south, having wood, water,
and every necessary; this he named Strawberry
Cove, from that fruit having been found there in
great plenty ; and the island, from the trees which
covered it, Cypress Island. About this part the
continental shore is high and rocky, though covered
with wood; and it may be remaiked generally,
that the northern shore of the gulf becomes more
rocky and sterile, showing gradually a less and less
variety of trees, until those of the pine tribe alone
are found.    Above   the   Archipelago   the  straits
c 2
¥ a*^"
widen, swelling out to the east in a double bay,
affording good anchorage, beyond which the shores
become low and sandy, and a wide bank of sand
extends along them about one or two miles, closely
approaching the opposite side of the gulf, leaving a
narrow but clear channel. This bank affording
large sturgeon, was named by Vancouver after that
fish; and keeping to the south round it, he did not
observe that here the gulf receives the waters of
Frazer's River from the north.
In this part of the gulf in the month of June
Vancouver saw a great number of whales. Tbe
peculiar feature of this continental shore lies in the
long narrow channels of deep water, which wind
circuitously round the base of its • rocky mountains.
Towards the north-west they get longer and more
intricate; the gulf becomes contracted and blocked
up with islands, and the shore rises abruptly, in
high black perpendicular rocks, wearing on the
whole so barren and dreary an aspect that this pare
of the gulf obtained the name of Desolation
This region is described, however, as highly romantic in character, cleft by deep dells and ravines,
down which torrents rush with foam and thunder ;
by high rocks of every variety of fantastic shape; and
above all, by snow-covered mountains of massive
grandeur; while fir-trees, proceeding from every crevice, clothe with dark verdure their rocky and precipitous sides. One of the most remarkable features
of the northern shore of the gulf is the small salt- '1
water lakes, between which and the sea there runs
a narrow ledge of rock, having a depth over it of
four feet at high water, and some of which, branching off in several directions, serve to water the surrounding country. In this district are found hot
springs, and mauy other evidences of former convulsions of nature.
In 1789, Mr., afterwards Sir, A. Mackenzie undertook the task of examining the country north of
the extreme point then occupied by the fur-traders,
in order to discover a passage by sea from the
Atlantic to the Pacific. Departing from Fort Chippewayan, he proceeded above Hearne River, through
Hearne Lake, entered a river, until this time unknown to Europeans, except by report, which has
been called by his name, Mackenzie River; and
following its course, reached its mouth, in lat. 69°,
at the end of July. Having thus established the
fact of the continuation westward of that northern
ocean which Hearne had, in 1771, discovered more
to the eastward, he returned home.
Mackenzie's second expedition, more directly
affecting the region now under consideration, com-
raenced in October, 1792, when, leaving Fort Chippewayan, he ascended the Peace, or as the Indians
cafl it, Unijah River, for upwards of 200 miles, to a
point in latitude 56° 9', where he built a log-house
and spent the winter. Departing thence on the
9-th May, 1793, he proceeded up the xiver, and in
June reached its source. This he found in a small
lake situated in a deep snowy valley, embosomed in
m 22-
woody mountains. The lake is about two miles io-
length, and from three to five hundred yards wide :
he found in it trout and carp, and its banks were
clothed, with spruce, white birch, willow, and alder :
it is in lat. 54° 24', long. 121° W., by his computation.
This is the principal water of Mackenzie River,
which, after its junction with the Elk River below
the Lake of the Hills, having already run a distance of upwards of 500 miles, reaches, under the.
names of Slave River and Mackenzie River, the
Arctic Ocean after a further course of 1000 miles.
From this lake he found a beaten path leading
J. O
over a low ridge of land of eight hundred and seven-
teen paces in length to another lake rather smaller
than the last. It is situated in a valley about a
quarter of a mile wide, with precipitous rocks on
either side, down which fall cascades, feeding both
lakes with the melting snows of the mountains^
Passing over this lake, he entered a small river,.
which, however, soon gathered strength from its
tributary mountain streams, and rushed with great
impetuosity over a bed of flat stones: these artel
the head waters of the Tatouche Tesse, or Frazer's
Continuing his journey to lat. 524°, he then returned up the stream to lat. 53^°,. whence he proceeded toward the Pacific by land. On his way
he noted women clothed in matted bark, edged with
the skin of the sea-otter. In July he found the
mountains covered with compact snow, and vet the FRAZER S RIVER—STUART S  LAKE.
weather was warm and the valleys beautiful. Descending the main chain of the Rocky Mountains,
he found the country covered with large trees, pine,
spruce, hemlock, birch, elder, and cedar. It abounded
with "animals.
In 1806, Mr. Frazer,* an employ6 of the North-
West Fur-Trading Company, crossed the same chain,
and established a post on a lake at the head of
the Tatouche Tesse, called, after him, Frazer's Lake
and River, one hundred miles north of Mackenzie's
track. Still later, Mr. Harmon, another partner
in the Company, made an expedition in the same
direction, the results of which he published, in a
thin volume, at Vermont, in 1822.
The whole of this vast district is so intersected
by lakes and rivers of various dimensions, that it
has been computed that one-sixth of the surface is
w&ter. Of these lakes, one of the largest—Stuart's
Lake—is about fifty miles in length, and from three
to four miles in breadth, stretching away to the
north and north-east for about twenty miles, and
studded in this direction with beautiful islands.
The circumference is supposed to extend about 400
miles. The western shore is low, and indented by
a number of small bays, formed by wooded points
projecting into the lake, the background rising
abruptly into a ridge of hills of different height and
magnitude.    On the east, the view is limited to a
* For an interesting memoir of this distinguished man see
the Canadian News for tbe 20th of March, 1862. He was
born 1783, and is, we believe, still living.
I 24
range of two or three miles by the intervention of a
high promontory, from which the eye glances to the
snowy summits of the Rocky Mountains in the distant background.
Fifty miles west from this is Frazer's Lake, about
eighty-five miles in circumference. M'Leod's Lake,
in latitude 55°, is in circumference about fifty-five
miles, and was also furnished with a post. The
waters of this lake fall into the Peace River; those
flowing out of the other two lakes are supposed to
empty themselves into the Pacific. The immense
quantity of salmon which annually visit them,
leave no doubt whatever of their communication
with the Pacific; while the absence of this fish from
MLeod's Lake makes it almost equally certain that
its outlet is not into that ocean. The river flo^
out of Stuart's Lake, passes through the populous
tribe of the Nate-Ote-Tains, who informed Mr.
M'Leod that white people came up in large boats to
trade with the A-te-nas—a nation dwelling between?
them and the sea; a statement fully confirmed by
the guns, iron pots, cloth, tar, and other articles
found in their possession. Speaking of the lake
sceuery of this district, Mr. M'Leod writes : " The
different parts of the country, towering mountains,
hill and dale, forest and lake, and verdant plains,
blended together in the happiest manner, are taken
in by the eye at a glance. Some scenes there are
which recal forcibly to the memory of a sou of
Scotia the hills and glens and \ bonny braes' of his
own poor yet beloved native land.   New Caledonia frazer's, quesnel's, and Thompson's rivers. 25
however, has the advantage over the old, of being
generally well wooded, and possessed of lakes of far
greater ■ magnitude. Unfortunately, however, the
woods are decaying rapidly, particularly some varieties of fir, which are being destroyed by an insect
which preys on the bark."
The principal rivers of British Columbia are
Frazer's River, Salmon River, Thompson's River,
Quesnel's River, Chilcotin River. The head waters
of the chief of these, Frazer's River—called by the
natives Tatoutche Tesse—rise near those of Canoe
River, the most northern branch of the Columbia.
After a western course of about 150 miles, it receives the Salmon River from the north, and somewhat lower the waters of Stuart's River are added
■Srom the north-west. The stream is then swollen
by the Quesnel River, rising from a ridge of the
Rocky Mountains, and running west into the main
river of the district. Next comes the Chilcotin
River, so called from a cognominal lake, in which
it has its source. This stream, which is shallow,
and full of rapids, runs in a S.S.E. direction from
Fort Alexandria; its course is serpentine, and its
whole length 180 miles, the breadth varying from
forty to sixty yards
p"Further on, this main stream is joined, on the
left shore, by Thompson's River, which, rising near
the source of Quesnel's River, flows at the base of
-the mountains which bound the Columbia to the
west: this receives the waters of several lakes in a
course of above 300 miles.    The principal of these
I 26
is Thompson's, above which it is joined by the
Shouschwap, which has its rise between the Okana-
gan Lakes and main streams of the Columbia.
Of these rivers, Mr. Cooper, a resident in Vancouver Island for six years, said in his evidence before the Hudson's Bay Committee (1857) :—" I have
not myself personally visited Thompson's River, but
I have my information from persons who have lived
there themselves for thirty or forty years in the
service of the Hudson's Bay Company. They say
that it is one of the most beautiful countries in the
world, and that gold is discovered in that and the
neighbouring district now. When I left, the miners
were getting from four to twenty dollars a day. I
believe, from all I have heard and seen, that it is
capable of producing all the crops that we produce
in England. Its climate bears no comparison to
Canada; it is much more mild, much finer; decidedly
as much as Great Britain to the eastern States of
The place at which the Thompson's River joins
Frazer's River is called " The Forks." In parallel
49° this now important river breaks through the
Cascade range of mountains, in a succession of falls
and rapids, and then running westward about
ninety miles, falls into the Gulf of Georgia, six
miles N. of 49° N, that parallel being the boundary
line between the British territories and those of
the United States. The whole length is stated at
about 400 miles. The country along its lower section is hilly and thickly wooded, and the soil is FRAZER S  RIVER CLIMATE.
for the most part suitable both for arable and pasture land. Further north the country is equally
well wooded, but it is less genial and fertile, and is
intersected by mountains, torrents, gullies, and
At its mouth, Frazer's River is about a mile
wide, with a serpentine channel leading through a
mud flat. Fort Langley is situated on the left
bank, thirty-five miles from the mouth. Thus far
the stream is navigable for vessels of considerable
burden. The next post is Fort Hope, at the mouth
of Que-Queallon River, sixty-five miles above Fort
Langley. Between Fort Hope and Fort Yale,,
sixteen miles, the river presents no difficulties
whatever to a canoe ascending, excepting in one
place, where there is a rapid, which, however, is no
great obstacle, as close to the shore, in the eddy, a
canoe is easily towed past it. But, about one half
mile above Fort Vale, the river finds its passage
between huge rocks—the sides almost perpendicular—and a canoe cannot be taken any farther.
From thence, all goods have to be packed. Now
and then a stretch of a mile or so is found, where
the canoe can be of service.
From Fort Yale to the forks of Thompson and
Frazer Rivers is ninety miles; and from these to
the Grand Falls, thirty.
In respect to the climate of British Columbia,
a gentleman who had resided in the district for
eight years states that " in the salubrity of its climate the territory on the shores   of the Pacific 2S
cannot be surpassed by any country in the world ;
the soil, too, is fertile in the highest degree, and
possesses great agricultural capabilities—the more
fertile districts lying, for the most part, between the
Cascade Mountains and the ocean. That portion of
the country which lies between the Cascade Mountains and the Pacific is subject to a remarkably
equable temperature, the mean being about 54°
Fahrenheit. The equable character of the climate
is probably occasioned by the circumstance of the
prevailing summer winds being from the north, and
laden with the cooling influences of the Polar Sea ;
and that the winter winds, coming from the west,
the south, and the south-east—except the latter,
which comes from the snows of the mountains—
tend to prevent that degree of cold which would
otherwise prevail. There are about four months of
winter, generally beginning in November and lasting till March Snow seldom lies for more than a
week on the ground; and, though there are frequent rains, they are not heavy. Slight frosts occur
as early as September. The air, however, is pure
and healthy. The eastern section, under the snows
of the Rocky Mountains, cannot be praised for its
climate. It is subject to great and sudden changes
of temperature, occasionally going through all the
gradations of summer, autumn, and winter in a
single day." Mr. M'Lean says that he has experienced at Stuart's Lake, in the month of July, every
possible change of weather within twelve hours—
frost in the morning, scorching heat at noon, then
M ■ml
rain, hail, and snow. Mr. Dunn testifies to a
similar effect. " Occasional frosts announce the beginning of winter. The lakes and parts of the
rivers are frozen in November The snow seldom
exceeds twenty-four inches in depth. The mercury,
in Fahrenheit's thermometer, falls in January to 15°
below 0 ; but this does not continue many days."
Generally speaking, the mean temperature on the
Pacific coast of British North America is, as stated
by Mr. John Richardson, about 20° higher than what
it is on the Atlantic coast in the same latitude.
The Indian tribes in and about the region under
consideration are thus approximately enumerated in
an official " Census of the Indian Tribes in the
Oregon territory, from latitude 42° to latitude 54°,
derived from the trading lists of the Hudson's Bay
Company, and from the best obtainable information."
Name of the Tribe.
Where situated.
Quaeott—Nuvette   and
From lat. 54= to lat. 50D,
27    others.      Tribes
including Queen Char
speaking generally the
lotte's  Island, North
Quaeott language.
end   of  Vancouver's
Island, Milbank Sound
and Island, and the
Main Shore ....
Massettes and 13 tribes,
On   Queen   Charlotte's
not included with the
Island, not included in
above,  and  speaking
different languages.
Nass  Indians, 4 tribes,
Nass River on the Main
speaking the same lan
^       i                 i              i         „       X
Chymsy ams, 10 tribes, all
Chatham Sound,  Port
of whom speak   the
land Canal, Port Es-
same language, with a
sington.and the neigh
different idiom.
bouring Islands...
Skeena Indians, 2 tribes.
At the  Mouth of the
Skeena River .... I
322 30
Name of the Tribe.
Labassas Indians,5tribes
Milbank Sound, 9 tribes.
24 tribes, speaking the
Challam and Cowaitz-
chim languages.
New Caledonian Indians.
—(8 tribes knorm).
Sanotch Indians, 3 tribes.
Children under
Hallams, 11 tribes.
Children under
Sinahomish, 1 tribe.
Children under
Skatcat, 1 tribe.
Children under
Cowitehici, 7 tribes.
Children under
Soke Indians, 1 tribe.
Children under
Cape Flattery—Gulf of
Georgia Indians; exact
numbers not ascertained 	
Where situated.
Gardner's Canal, Canal
de Principe, Canal de
la Eeida	
Milbank Sound, Caceade
Canal, Deane Canal,
Salmon River, and the
Islands on the Coast .
From lat. 50° along the:
Coast south to Whitby-
Island in lat. 48°; part
of Vancouver's Island
and the mouth of
Franc's River    .   .   .
M'Leod's Lake, Cheler-
tins, Fort George, Alexandria, in Frazer's
River, Conally Lake,
Babine Lake, Frazer's
Lake, Stuart's Lake  .
Straits of St. Juan de Fuca
& Vancouver's Islands
....     99
12 years
12 years
12 years
12 years
12 years . . .
yet ascertained
3,176   3.SS3
1,265 1,150
194 152
517 461
208 IIS
173! 161
5241 63G
about     —
I   I
1,250 [
The leading tribe in British Columbia is the
Takellies, or Tacullies, a name importing " carriers,"
who among themselves are divided into-eight tribes
of various extent. The character attributed to these
Indians by the travellers who have visited them is
by no means flattering; they seem to be remarkable for their greediness, sensuality, and mendacity.
It is to be hoped that the new colonists will inculcate a higher condition of morality. THE INDIANS.
Gambling is another vice to which these poor
Indians apply their untutored minds, in unconscious
emulation of their betters. It is, indeed so ruling
a passion with them, that a man will continue to
stake on and on until he has reduced himself to absolute nakedness and starvation. They are also
described as unscrupulous pilferers.
The Takellies are a sedentary people, being much
in-doors, particularly in the winter, when there is
often so little Stir in an encampment or lodge that
one may approach within the shortest distance of
the huts before one is aware of their existence. At
the same time, they are very social in their habits,
and very fond of conversation when they are not sleeping ; they are frequently in the habit of exchanging visits, and of passing their time at each other's
huts. When it happens that a large number assemble in one place, the noise is incredible ; all make
a point of talking or bawling at one and the same
time, and the convocation becomes a mere confusion.
Commodore Wilkes informs us that the Takellics
are of a lighter complexion than the more northern
tribes, and their features larger, particularly in the
case of the females. They resemble, he says, the
Indians of the Columbia, but are a taller and better-
looking race. He corroborates the account of their
extreme filth, physical and moral. They dressed in
robes made of marmot skins; but they are now
(1845) clothed in articles of European manufacture,
of which they obtain a plentiful supply.
In common with other Indian nations, the Indians
of this  region have priests or medicine-men who
ii m
r. i:;3 32
practise incantations. When a body is burned, the
priest pretends to receive the spirit of the deceased
into his hands, which he does with many gesticulations. This spirit he is thought to be able to communicate to others living, and when he has selected
the person, he throws his hands towards him, and,
at the same time blows upon him, after which the
person takes the name of the deceased in addition;
to his own. In case of the death of a chief, or man.;
of higher rank, this belief affords the priest an
opportunity of extending his influence and power.
The language of the Takellies is a dialect of the
Chippewayan family, so largely extended over
North America. Mr. M'Lean notes as a singular
fact that" the two intervening dialects of the Beaver
Indians and Tsikanies, kindred nations, should differ
more from the Chippewayan than the Takelly language ; the two other nations being perfectly intelligible to each other, while the Beaver Indians
and Tsikanies are but very imperfectly understood
by their immediate neighbours, the Chippewayans."
The Takellies, like most of the tribes in thisf
quarter, redeem, to a certain extent, their grossness
and' brutality in other respects, by their almost
universal taste for music, and indeed, as musicians^,
are said to possess a superior ear to their neighbours.
It is not impossible that this quality in the savage
population of British Columbia may be made efficacious towards their civilization; for like the children
in our own schools, they may be induced to listen to
instruction, musically conveyed, to which otherwise B'
they would pay no attention. Mr. M'Lean tells us
that there is considerable variety and melody in the
airs they sing. In common, again, with more refined people, they have professed " composers," who
turn their talent to good account on the occasion
of a feast, when new airs are in great request, and
are purchased at a high rate. As to their dancing,
it is performed in circles; men and women promiscuously holding each other by the hand and
keeping both feet together, hop a little to a side all
at once, giving at the same time a singular jerk to
their persons behind. The movement seems to be
difficult of execution, as it causes them to perspire
profusely ; they, however, keep excellent time, and
the blending of the voices of the men and women
in symphony has an agreeable effect.
" These Indians," observes Mr. M'Lean, " are not
given to hospitality in the proper sense of the word.
A stranger arriving among them is provided with
food for a day only; should he remain longer he
pays for it; for the day's entertainment, however,
the best fare is liberally furnished."
The Talkotin Indians occupy the territory above
Fort Alexandria, on Frazer River, and are described
by Mr. M'Lean as being on terms of deadliest
enmity with the Chilcotins. These reside about the
cognominal lake and river, and are somewhat
more numerous than the Naskotins. Their district
abounds in beavers and other fur-bearing animals,
but they are described as indifferent hunters, and
as relying for their chief sustenance on the produce
of the lake and the river. They are well acquainted
with the use of fire-arms, and a traveller specifies
" one particular gun of excellent quality which he
saw among them, marked 'Barret, 1808.'" From
these circumstances, and from the superiority of
their general conduct and behaviour, from thei?
greater cleanliness and comparative refinement, Mr.
Cox was led to imagine that they must have had
considerable intercourse with the whites. The
dress they wore, common to both sexes, and which
is a kind of blanket, favoured the supposition with
Mr. Cox, who considered that these aadacles had
been obtained from Russian travellers.
All the natives of the north-west coast are skilful
and enterprising traders. At Queen Charlotte's
Islands they not only dispose of furs, and fish, but
they cultivate potatoes, and hold, at stated periods,
potato fairs, attended by the native traders from
other islands, who again supply these and other
vegetable products to the more remote traders inhabiting some of the rocky islands in Behring's
Touching religious matters, the Bishop of Columbia, in his Journal (1860), says :—
" Most of the Indians profess to know of the Sack-
ally Tyhee Papa, Great Chief Father. They point
upwards; they say He sees all, is all-wise, and. strong
and good, and never dies. I found out to-day, from
two Indians of this place, that Skatyatkeitlah is the
same as Squaquash Suokum, or the sun. The sun
is the Sackally Tyhee Papa. Klanampton, the
moon, is his wife, and the stars their children." THE  INDIANS.
The canoes of the natives vary in size and form.
Some are thirty feet long, and about three feet deep,
eut out of a single tree—either fir or white cedar,
—and capable of carrying twenty persons. They
have round thwart pieces from side to side, forming
a sort of binders, about three inches in circumference, and their gunwales incline outwards, so as to
cast off the surge; the bow and stern being decorated
sometimes with grotesque figures of men and animals.
In managing their canoes, they kneel two and two
along the bottom, sitting on their heels, and wielding paddles about five feet long; while one sits on
the stern and steers with a paddle of the same kind.
The women are equally expert in the management
of the canoe, and generally take the helm. " It is
Wirprising," says Mr. Dunn, " to see with what fearless unconcern these savages venture in their slight
barks on the most tempestuous seas. They seem
to ride upon the waves like sea-fowl. Should a surge
throw the canoe on one side, and endanger its overturn, those to windward lean over the upper gunwale, thrust their paddles deep into the wave,
apparently catch the water, and force it under the
canoe, and by this action not merely regain an
equilibrium, but give the vessel a vigorous impulse." Their houses, for the most part, have large
potato gardens ; this vegetable was first given to
them by an American captain, and is now grown
in abundance, and sold by them to the vessels
entering their harbour, and to the traders at Fort
D 2
IP 36
In working their cures, the Takellies are never
in the habit of employing medicines; of the virtues
of herbs and plants indeed they are profoundly
ignorant; and the only remedy with which they
are acquainted is an operation into which pantomimic gesture and rough handling of the patient
enter most largely. It seems probable that they
have some strong faith in the efficacy of the vapour-
bath or sweating-house. These houses are con-
structed so as to present in their interior the
aspect of a beehive ; they are covered over in such a
manner that the heat cannot escape, and the patient
remains in the midst of the steam engendered by
the process of pouring water over red-hot stones,
until he is compelled by a feeling of suffocation to
rush out of the sweating-house and plunge into the
adjoining river.
The houses of the Indians, which are constructed
of wood and vary in length from twenty to seventy
feet and in breadth from fifteen to twenty-five, are
divided by partitions, and three or four families
may be found residing in a one-roomed house. In
the centre of each room is a space, six or eight feet
square, sunk to the depth of twelve inches belosj-
the i%est of the floor, and enclosed by four pieces of
square timber; here they make the fire, which is
of wood and fine bark. The partitions in the
houses are intended to separate different families.
Around the fire-place mats are spread, and serve
as seats by day, and frequently as beds at night ;
there is, however, a more  permanent  bed made-, INDIAN COOKERY AND  DWELLINGS.
by fixing in two, or sometimes three, sides of a
room, posts reaching from the floor to the roof,
and at the distance of four feet from the wall.
From these posts to the wall one or two ranges
of boards are placed so as to form shelves, on
which they either sleep or stow their various articles of merchandize. In short, they are like berths
in a ship. The uncured fish is hung in the smoke
of their fires ; as is also the flesh of the elk, when
they are fortunate enough to procure any.
Their culinary articles consist of a large square
kettle, made of cedar wood, and a few platters and
spoons made of ash. Their mode of cooking is expeditious. Having put a quantity of water into
their kettle, they throw into it several hot stones,
which quickly cause the water to boil; then the fish
or flesh is put in ; the steam is kept from evaporating by a small mat thrown over the kettle. By this
method a large salmon would be boiled in twenty
minutes, and meat in a proportionably short space of
time. They occasionally roast their fish and flesh
on small wooden skewers.
The houses are generally entered by a door of a
circular form, at each end, about two feet and a half
in diameter. They are made in the building after
at is erected. In effecting a passage you first intro-
j&uce a leg, then bending low the body you press in
head and shoulders : in this position you will have
some difficulty in maintaining your equilibrium, for
if you draw in the rest of the body too quickly it
is a chance but you will find yourself with your 38
head undermost.    The natives bolt through them
with the agility of a weasel.
Mr. Blanshard, late Governor of Vancouver
Island, in his examination before the House of
Commons' Committee, in 1857, said of the country
about Frazer's River : " I have heard it very highSp
spoken of by everybody who has been there 4s
being extremely fertile, and a soil of much the same
quality as "Vancouver Island."
The author of a pamphlet, published when interest
was first awakened by the reports received from
these latitudes, remarks :—" Lying near'the banks of
Frazer River there is a vast tract of low pasture-
land, which might be made available for the breeding of cattle. Near Fort Langley, which is situated
some sixty miles up Frazer River, about four miles
of open land exist; and in the neighbourhood of
Point Roberts, which is close to the line of
boundary between the American and British
territory, there is an additional tract of green,
smiling prairie. About 200 miles from the
sea-coast, along the banks of Thompson River, a
magnificent extent of pasture-land stretches for
some 300 miles, till it reaches Lake Okanagan at
one of the sources of the River Columbia. If
native report can be relied upon, large tracts of
level pasture-land are to be met with near TschesaM,
or Jarvis Inlet, which lies near the coast, midway
up the Gulf of Georgia, and opposite Vancouver
Island. A fine seam of sound workable coal has
been discovered cropping out of the surface of the SMALL FARMS AND FARMERS.       39
soil at Bellingham Bay, which is about twenty
miles south of the boundary line, and is, consequently, an American possession. However, when
the country shall be I prospected,' a continuation of
this seam will doubtless be found extending through
the British territory. Already a small' vein of
the valuable mineral has been discovered lying
on sandstone between Burrard Canal and Home
The same sort of hopeful language is addressed
to the agricultural classes by one just returned
(1862) from the Gold Fields :—
" The agriculturist most wanted in British Columbia at the present moment, is the small farmer, who
here at home tills a few acres. The best way of
working is in partnership with one or more men of
a similar standing. The working in partnership
will soon make enough to provide sure homes for
wives and little ones; and when such is the case,
wives and children, or sweethearts, can be sent
" I would not advise farming on a large scale, because,, as I have said, the circumstances of to-day in a
new colony may widely differ from those which will
exist six months hence; and secondly, for the reason
that large farming requires large labour ; and as in
British Columbia labour is, and will be for some
years to come, extremely expensive, a large outlay
of capital would be certain, while the chances of an
equally large return would be doubtful.
" The farmer to make money at once in British 40
Columbia, is he who depends entirely on his own
labour and common sense. Such a man can buy
land on easy terms, land which in a few years will
be worth fifty times the present price, and the yearly
value of which will steadily rise, so that a sale at
any time must be a source of profit. Nor is it
necessary to pay the entire purchase-money before
entering on possession. Instalments are taken, and
so, although the price per acre is only four shillings
and two-pence, yet an immediate payment of that
Sum upon the purchase of every acre is not required.
" This land will be a source of future wealth to the
tiller's children, and certainly in the meantime be a
maintenance for himself. I know of no better way
in which the father, or the man who hopes some day
to be a husband and a father, can do his duty to the
existing or hoped-for children than in working hard
himself as an agricultural emigrant for the benefit
of those belonging to him, whom, in the course of
nature, he will leave behind upon this earth.
" The emigrant, however, need not purchase land,
unless he is willing. He can ' squat' upon unsurveyed lands, the title of which he may make sure of
getting when they are surveyed, up to which time
the only expense to which he can be put will be one
small registration fee. Of course, good lands in
the neighbourhoods of towns are pretty well all appropriated by this time, and I tell proposing settlers
at once, that they must be prepared to rough it at
first, with no other faces to look upon than their
own, which will be cheerful enough if they work THE SOIL—FISHERIES.
hard, and are determined to put a good face upon
Though the extent of reallv good land in British
Columbia is certainly small compared with mountain and forest tracts, yet it is very large in proportion to the number of inhabitants. The soil is
everywhere fertile, though in many places it is
extremely light and sandy.
Mr. Pemberton says :—
" The fertility of the soil in the neighbourhood of
the gold-bearing rocks is very remarkable, and is
indicated rather by the production from ordinary
seed of gigantic roots and vegetables and fruits,
than by crops of grain."
" An acre of land planted with 200 apple-trees
would, at the end of three years, on a minute calculation, cost a proprietor from 30Z. to 40/L, and the
lowest selling price of an acre of apple-trees of that
age is 200/."
A miner who has lately (1862) returned from the
Gold Fields, and who seems to have been a shrewd
observer, remarks—
" All along the coast of Vancouver Island the
fisheries may be described as beyond value. Salmon and herrings abound to an extent almost unknown elsewhere, and mackerel and cod are also
found. The produce of these fisheries, along with
the coal and timber, form the principal resources of
the island, as it is not well adapted for pastoral and
not altogether for agricultural purposes.
" Of salmon there are four kinds, differing in the 42
conformation of the head. The largest species is
the same with that found in Great Britain. These
fish ascend Frazer's River and its tributaries, from
the Pacific, in immense shoals, proceeding towards
the sources of the stream until stopped by shallow
water. Having deposited their spawn, their dead
bodies are seen floating down the current in thousands ; few of them ever return to the sea; and, in
consequence of the old fish perishing in this manner, they fail, in this quarter, every fourth year, and
then the natives starve in all directions."
The salmon fishery commences about the middle
of July, and ends in October. This is a very busy
time with the natives ; for upon their success in
securing a supply of salmon for the winter depends
their main support. Their method of catching the
salmon is this : A certain part of the river is enclosed by a number of stakes, about twelve feet
high, and extending about forty feet from the shore.
A netting of rods is attached to the stakes, to prevent the salmon running through. A conical
machine, called a vorveau, is next formed; it is
eighteen feet long and five feet high, and is made of
rods about an inch and a quarter asunder, and
lashed to hoops with whattap, a tough fibrous root
used in sewing bark. One end is formed like a
funnel, to admit the fish ; two smaller machines, of
nearly equal length, are joined to it. It requires a
number of bands to attach these vorveaus to the
stake, but they are very effective for their purpose.
As soon as a cargo of salmon is caught, the natives SALMON  FICKLING.
bring it to the trading post in their canoes. A
number of Indian women are employed by the
trader, seated on the beach, with knives ready to
cut up the fish. The salmon are counted from each
Indian, for which a ticket is given for the quantity,
large or small. After the whole of the salmon are
landed, the Indians congregate round the trading
shop for their payment, and receive ammunition,
baize, tobacco, buttons, &c.
The women employed by the trader commence cutting out the back-bone and the heads
of the salmon. They are then taken to the Salter,
and placed in a large hogshead, with a quantity of
coarse salt. They remain there for several days,
until they become quite firm. The pickle produced
from these is boiled in a large copper kettle; and
the blood, which floats by the boiling process to
the top, is skimmed off, leaving the pickle perfectly
clear. The salmon are then taken from the hogshead, and packed in tierces, with a little more salt;
the tierces are then headed up, and laid upon their
bilge, or widest part, leaving the bunghole open;
the pickle is next poured in, until the tierce becomes
full; a circle of clay, about four inches high, is then
made round the bunghole, into which the oil from
the salmon rises. This oil is skimmed off, and
as the salmon imbibes the pickle more pickle is
poured in, so as to keep the liquid sufficiently
on the surface, and afford facility for skimming
off the oil. When the oil ceases to rise to the
circle round the bunghole, the salmon is supposed .
to be sufficiently prepared; the clay circle is
cleared away, and the hole is bunged up. Salmon
so cured will keep good for three years. This,
soaked in a little water for a few hours previous to
using, is delicious eating; but of course much of its
deliciousness depends on its original quality when
taken and its freshness when put in salt.
In immediate connexion with this paii; of the
question, the following remarks from Mr. Pember-
ton's pen will be found of interest:—
" Salt on the coast for curing fish and beef, and
other similar purposes, is exceedingly valuable. The
Sandwich Island salt contains too much lime to be
used for these purposes. Liverpool salt is retailed
in the Sound, as high as 15c. per pound ; thii
makes the subject worth investigating.
" A gallon of water from the Nanaimo spring produced 1 lb. of salt (a gallon of sea water produces
4 J oz.), the spring produced about a gallon a minute
—the specific gravity of the water, taken roughly,
was about 10*60. These springs will not of course
compare with the brine springs of Worcestershire
or those of Utah, which contain one-third their
weight in salt, but for the reason mentioned the
subject is not uninteresting. The offensive smell
alluded to in the Report of Professor Taylor on two
of these springs, arose from the decomposition which
unavoidably took place, as the samples were bottled
for nearly a year before they were placed in his
-" In October and November," says Colonel Grant, ABUNDANCE OF FISH.
" the herrings frequent the bays in great numbers,
and are caught by the natives with a long stick with
crooked nails on it, with which they literally rake
them into their canoes. The herring is precisely
similar in quality to that caught on the west coast
of Scotland, though somewhat smaller in size.
" All the trade bond fide with the island
has been between it and San Francisco, the
cargoes of salmon exported in the Hudson Bay
vessels to the Sandwich Islands having been from
Frazer River. In the space of a fortnight, during
the month of August, the Hudson Bay Company
has put up about 2000 barrels of salt salmon."
" Sturgeon," adds another writer, " often of enormous size, are found in abundance on the sand-bars
at the entrance of the rivers. Soup made from them
i%ricb, and resembles turtle. Isinglass is, of course,
a drug in the market.
" Besides the above, the waters abound with
halibut, cod, skate, flounders, herrings, dog-fish, and
others too numerous to recollect.
" Large cray-fish are found, but not lobsters ;
oysters are abundant."
Among the game found in the district are wild
goose, swan, duck,* and plover.
* "To meet with any large game the sportsman has now,
as might be expected, to go several miles from the settlement. His equipment for this purpose should consist of a
double rifle with one sight, adjusted for point-blank shooting
only, with strong charge, up to 100 yards, a hunting knife,
and ammunition, an. oil-skin and blanket, and an Indian or
two to carry the game and keep the track, retracing, if re- ■
" It is interesting," says Mr. Pemberton, writing
in 1860, "to observe the rapid increase of small
birds near the settlements in proportion as birds of
prey, such as eagles, hawks, kites, &c, are scared
away. In this way flocks of wild pigeons, doves of
two kinds, three varieties of thrush, meadow larks,
several kinds of sparrows, wrens, humming-birds,
tom-tits, and a bird that sings at night, evidently
prefer quarters near a homestead to a precarious
subsistence in the wilderness."
Mr. M'Lean says :—"A small animal, called by
the natives quis-qui-su, or the whistler, from the
noise it makes when surprised, and which appears
from the description to be the marmot, is also
largely contributory to the sustenance of man, and
the clothing of his person in a valuable fur. There
is also the far less welcome animal, the wood rat,
which fixes itself in the crevices of rocks, but has a
preference for the dwellings of men; they live
under the floors of outbuildings, and, forcing their
way thence into the inside, carry off* or destroy
quired, in which department they excel.    Dogs, unless remarkably well trained, are better dispensed with.
" Of feathered game the duck-shooting is decidedly the
best sport upon the coast. Of these there are fifteen or more
different kinds; the best are found at river deltas and in
swamps, where, as you walk, they continue to rise straight
up, often at the sportsman's feet. Away from the settlement
a good shot has killed thirty and forty in a day. A good
retriever is indispensable, and I may add that there is
nothing like an Eley cartridge and large bore for takino-
them down."—Pembeeton: NATIVE DOGS—WILD  FRUITS.
everything within their reach. The difficulty of
getting rid of them almost amounts to an imposst"
bility. Their colour is grey, and in size and shape
they differ little from the common rat; but the tail
resembles that of the ground squirrel."
There are plenty of dogs. They are of a diminutive size, and strongly resemble those of the
Esquimaux, with the curled-up tail, small ears, and
pointed nose. They are valuable dead as well as
living, their flesh constituting a chief article of food
in the feast of the natives. " Dog Tray" seems
well to deserve every consideration at the hands
of the British Columbians. "When the natiyes,"
writes Mr. Harmon, " do not travel on foot, in their
snow shoes made of two bent sticks interlaced with
thongs of deerskin, they ride on sledges drawn by
dogs. A couple of these tractable animals will draw
a load of 250 pounds, besides provisions for themselves and their driver, twenty miles in five
Of vegetables Mr. M'Lean thus writes :—" Such
parts of the district as are not in the immediate
•yicinity of the regions of eternal snow, yield a
variety of wild fruit, grateful to the palate, wholesome, and nutritious. Of these, the Indian pear is
the most abundant, and most sought after, both by
SBatives and whites ; when fully ripe, it is of a black
colour, with somewhat of a reddish tinge, pear-
shaped, and very sweet to the taste. The natives
dry them in the sun, and afterwards bake them in
cakes, which are said to be delicious.    When dried, 48
these cakes are placed in wooden vessels to receive
the juice of green fruit, which is expressed by
placing weights upon it, in wooden troughs, from
which spouts of bark draw off the liquid into the
vessels containing the dry fruit; this being thoroughly saturated, is again bruised, then re-formed
into cakes, and dried again; and these processes are
repeated alternately, until the cakes suit the taste
of the maker. Blueberries are plentiful in some
parts of the district. There is a peculiar variety of
them, which I preferred," writes Mr. M'Lean, " to
any fruit I ever tasted; it is about the size of a
musket ball, of a purple colour, translucid, and in
its taste sweet and acid are deliriously blended."
Mr. Cox adds to the list choke-cherries, gooseberries,
strawberries, and red whortleberries ; but the service-berries, he says, are with the Indians the great
favourite. There are various kinds of roots, which
the natives preserve and dry for periods of scarcity.
There is only one kind which we can eat. It is
called tza-chin, has a bitter taste, but when eaten
with salmon imparts an agreeable zest, and effectually destroys the disagreeable smell of that fish
when smoke-dried. St. John's wort is very common, and has been successfully applied as a fomentation in topical inflammations. A kind of weed,
which the natives convert into a species of flax, is
in universal demand.
The various quadrupeds, as well as the fish, found
in British Columbia, are all used for the purposes of
food.    They  are  caught in strong nets made  of "
thongs, or shot with arrows, or taken in traps made
with large pieces of wood, which are so set as to
fall and crush them while nibbling at the bait. The
beaver and the bear* are considered the most valuable of these edibles, and are served up at the feasts
which they make in memory of their deceased
relatives, as companion plats with the dogs. When
all other food fails, the natives make shift with a
species of lichen, which is found in abundance on
the sides of the rock.
The currency of British Columbia, in its native
simplicity, consisted of haiqua, a round shell of
extreme hardness, found in the neighbourhood of
Nootka Sound. It varies in length from one to
four inches, and is about half an inch thick, hollow,
slightly curved, and tapering a little towards the
end. It is highly estimated, the longest being the
most valuable. It resembles the top shank of a
common clay smoking-pipe : they are valued in proportion to the number that, when ranged on a string
passing through their hollow tubes, extend a fathom's
length. Forty to the fathom is or was supposed to be
the fixed standard of excellence and worth ; for instance, forty which make a fathom are worth nearly
double fifty which make a fathom. Their extreme
fragility, lightness, tenuity, and delicacy of colour ai'e
* To see one of these animals steeple-chasing over the
fallen timber of the forest, or spring up a tree in its native
state, it is difficult to conceive its being similar to that we
have seen so tame and spiritless in the menagerie.—Pem-
■beeton. 50
what appear to give them their importance. They are
thus caught in Nootka Sound and along Vancouver
Island :—A piece of deer's flesh or fish is dropped
by a line to the bottom; this they cling to ; and
they are then drawn up, and carefully gutted and
But in proportion as the new colony has developed itself, it has become necessary that some monetary system of a fixed or recognised character should
be adopted ; and in 1861 the Governor took this important question into serious consideration. In a
despatch to the Colonial Secretary, dated November 14th, 1861, Mr. Douglas says :—
" Much inconvenience and loss have, ever since
the formation of these colonies, been occasioned by
the want of a circulating medium of fixed and recognised value, equal to the business demands of
the country.     The scarcity of coin has  been  so
great, gold dust not being received for duties, that
importers of goods have  found it difficult at all
times to make their custom-house payments, and,
as is well known, are frequently compelled to borrow money  for that purpose at exorbitant rates!
*rf interest, from two  per  cent,  per month  and
upwards.    Almost all the business of the country
is transacted in gold dust of uncertain value, and it
is easy to conceive the difficulty and inconvenience
of adjusting payments by such means, when the
holder and receiver are both alike subject to loss,
ind fearful of imposition.
" The effects of an over-restricted monetary mM FORMER SCARCITY OF MONEY.
eulation are now, however, operating so fatally in
both colonies that it is indispensable to devise a
remedy for an evil that is sapping the very foundations of our prosperity. To illustrate this fact, I
would inform your Grace that at this moment there
is an amount of gold dust in the hands of miners
from Cariboo, residing at Victoria, exceeding one
quarter of a million sterling; and so great is the
present dearth of coin that it brings a premium of
five per cent, and over when procurable, which is
not generally the case, as men may be seen hawkv
ing bars of gold about the streets of Victoria, who
cannot raise coin enough, even at the high rates of
discount just mentioned, to defray their current
expenses. The miners and other holders of gold
are naturally incensed, and refuse to submit to this
depreciation on the value of their property, when
they know it can be converted into coin for the
moderate charge of one-half of one per cent, at the
United States Branch Mint in San Francisco;
making an important saving to them of four-and-a-
half per cent. They are consequently leaving Victoria by every opportunity ; and it is most painful
to witness a state of things which is rapidly driving
population and capital from the country.
" As a safer remedy, and one more suitable to
the actual circumstances of the colonies, I propose
to take immediate steps for the manufacture of goAdi
pieces, equal in value to the ten and twenty dollar
American coins, and to bring them into general use
as a circulating medium in both colonies. 52
" This plan does not contemplate refining the
gold, as the expense would be greatly increased by
that process : it is merely proposed to bring it to a
uniform standard of fineness, without separating the
natural alloy of silver which to some extent exis$$
in all the gold of British Columbia.
" The pieces will be prepared at the Government
Assay Office, and will bear the stamp of unquestionable character ; and I am of opinion that by making
the gold contained in them of the full cui-rent value
of the piece, without taking the silver into account,
which I propose should go as a bonus, they will not
only answer as a cheap and convenient currency
within the colonies, but also have the same exchange
value when exported to other countries.
" I have submitted this plan for the consideration
of the principal banking and commercial houses of
Victoria, with the object of obtaining their views as
to the probable effects of the proposed currency on
the general business of the country, and more especially as to its exchange value when exported to pay
for supplies : the single point which I think admits
of any question, for in that case it would jirobably
be treated as simple bullion.
" It was clearly proved by the statements of those
gentlemen, that the actual cost of importing coin
from other countries is rather over five per cent.,
which they believe to be the actual cost of our present metallic currency. Not having had sufficient
time for consideration, they were not, however, prepared to give a decided opinion on the general mea- A  BANK  ESTABLISHED.
sure, but they admitted that it would establish the
value of the gold produced in British Columbia in
the cheapest manner, and provide a metallic currency for the country at a cost of four per cent, less
than is paid for imported coin, and offered no objections either to the plan or the basis of the proposed
" If the principal banking and mercantile houses
agree among themselves to receive this currency as
a legal tender, no difficulty will be experienced in
carrying the measure into effect; and no reason
exists why it should not receive their heai-ty support, as it will surely tend to their advantage, not
only by the saving, as before shown, of four per
cent, on the cost of importing coin, and the complete
removal of the cause which is draining the country
of wealth and population, but also in the numberless other ways by which the investment of capital
serves to promote the general prosperity."
The foregoing despatch was received in London
on the 13th January, 1862, and the prospectus has
since appeared of " The Chartered Bank of British
Columbia and Vancouver Island." The association
professes to be formed for the purpose of " affording additional facilities to the new colony," where
the existing banking accommodation is represented
to be at present inadequate to the requirements of an
increasing trade and population. The scheme seems
to have been maturely weighed, and its success has
been hitherto great, the shares being, we believe,
already at a premium.    Still there is a good deal of 54
truth in a letter which was published in the Times-
on the 9th April, 1862, and it remains to be seen
how far this banking project will meet the wants of
the colony, and whether it is not slightly premature. The Times' Correspondent, Mr. Bauerman,
says :—
"Judging from the statements put forward in
the prospectuses of joint-stock banking companies
for Vancouver's Island, there must be a considerable
amount of ignorance as to the nature of the banking operations in Victoria. It may therefore be of
interest to some of your readers to know that at
the commencement of the current year the following firms were engaged in the purchase of gold dust
and bars at Victoria, Vancouver's Island: — 1,
Messrs. Wells, Fargo, and Co., bankers and general
express agents; 2, Messrs. Macdonald and Co.,
bankers; 3, Messrs. Marchand and Co., assayers;
4, Messrs. Robertson and Co., assayers; 5, The
Bank of British North America;—all subsisting
on 1,500,000Z. worth of gold, the greater part being
bought by the first firm, Wells, Fargo, and Co., who
are among the principal buyers and exporters of
gold in California and Oregon.
" The branch of the Bank of British North America was established in 1859 as an experiment, and
at the beginning of the present year the staff of!
officials was  reduced,   probably from   diminished
" There is no authority for the supposition that
large profits are to be derived from the circulation IMPORTS INTO  BRITISH  COLUMBIA.
of bank notes, as up to the present time the experiment has never been tried on the Pacific coast.
There will be less need for it in a short time, as the
Government of British Columbia are about to issue
pattern gold pieces, or tokens, of twenty dollars and
ten dollars value, for circulation in the colony."*
The principal exports of British Columbia are
coal, timber, lumber, oysters, salmon (10,000 barrels were exported in 1860), and oil; but the rush
to the diggings has been so immense, that the exports during last year may be set down at nought.
The exports in 1860 valued 50,000?.; the imports
about 40,000?. These imports consisted of specie,
provisions, and various merchandize."
The Canadian News of the 19th December, 1861,
" The total value of imports into this colony for
the last quarter is, from San Francisco, $234,956 ;
from London, $57,530; from Portland, $45,093;
•from Port Townsend, $51,564; from Honolulu,
$11,419, and from New Westminster, $14,171—
Total, $414,733."
As Mr. Alfred Roche points out, " the harbours at
Queen Charlotte's Islands, Vancouver Island, and the
-^entrance of Frazer's River, are peculiarly adapted
* The Daily News of the 15th April, 1862, says, however:
—"It is expected that the allotment of the shares in the
Chartered Bank of British Columbia and "Vancouver's Island
will be completed on the 16th or 17th. It is a work of great
difficulty, the applications reaching to nine times the amount
of the company's capital."
I 56
for the fitting-out of whalers ; being in the neighbourhood of very valuable fishing grounds, and the
country in their vicinity affording everything that
is required for the construction of vessels, such as
excellent timber, iron and copper, coal for forges,
water-power for driving saw-mills, and even flax,
growing wild in the interior, for the manufacture of
sails and cordage ! Thus the whale fishery alone, by
creating a demand for many articles into which these
^products could be manufactured, might be made to
give employment to numbers of persons of various
trades and callings."
1 57
Description of the Coast and Interior—-The Soil—Timber—
Coal—The Vancouver Coal-Mining Company just established—-Indian Women and Indian Babies—Stock—
As the emigrant steams eastward into the Straits of
Juan de Fuca, he beholds on his right Washington
Territory, and on his left Vancouver Island. Before
him lies the Gulf of Georgia, dotted with islands,
and in the background of the landscape is British
Columbia, with the Cascade range and the snow-clad
peaks of Mount Baker. The entrance to the Strait
of Fuca is highly dangerous ; but when a vessel is
once safe within the Strait, safe anchorage and good
harbours are abundant. There is, on the outer shore,
Port San Juan, thirteen miles east of Point Bonilla.
Soke Basin, thirty miles more inland, quite landlocked, and sufficiently capacious to receive a fleet;
four miles from Soke Basin lies Beecher Bay;
beyond   Beecher   Bay, Esquimault,*   which, it is
* " These were originally the sites of Indian villages ,* not
here alone, but invariably, the Indians on the coast have shown,
great sagacity in choosing for their village sites spots the
most favoured by nature, commanding and accessible at the
same time. Fresh water, fuel, and drainage are attended to ;
facilities for boat navigation are never forgotten; and, whether 58
British Columbia.
believed, is to be the new naval dep6t of the Pacific;
and three miles thence, Victoria Harbour. Of these,
Esquimault is by far the best. " In point of shelter,"
observes Mr. Pemberton, "holding.ground, facility o£
ingress and egress, dock sites and wharfage, it is witb|||
out a rival, and appears to be the natural port of entry
for sailing ships which have made a long sea voyage
to either colony, and to be the proper starting-point
or a line of steamers connecting with British Columbia." " Victoria Harbour, however," continues Mr*
■Pemberton, " though it cannot compete with Esqu«|
mault as a naval dep6t or as a port for clippers, is
far from unimportant. Ordinary merchant vessels*
by attending to the tides, can readily enter, and
once within, there is ample space and depth."
" The position and natural advantages of Vancouver Island," says Colonel Grant, in a paper read
before the Geographical Society of London a few
years ago, " would appear eminently to adapt it for
being the emporium of an extended commerce. It
contains valuable coal-fields, and is covered with fine
timber. The soil, where there is any, is rich and
productive; the climate good; and the singular j
system of inland seas by which it is environed
teems with fish of every description. Capable of
producing those very articles which are most in de-j
mand in neighbouring countries, and offering in its!
we look at their camps or from them, we quit them with the
impression that the savage has a clear conception of, and
knows how to appreciate, the picturesque and beautiful."—
numerous safe and commodious harbours almost
unrivalled facilities for import and export, it would
seem to require but a little well-directed exertion
of energy and enterprise to make it the seat of a
flourishing colony.
" The coast of the island," continues Grant, "trends
kta north-west and south-east direction; its extreme
length from Cape Scott to Point Gonzalez being
270 miles, with a general breadth of from forty to
fifty, and the greatest breadth is seventy miles,
being from Point Estevan, at the south entrance of
Clayoquot Sound, to Point Chatham, at the northern
extremity of Discovery Passage; its least breadth,
namely, from about twenty miles south of Woody
Point to Port Bauza, is twenty-eight miles. There
are, however, several places in which the arms of
the sea, running inland from opposite sides of the
island, approach very closely to each other. In the
north, for instance, from Beaver Harbour to Kos-
kiemo, the extremity of an inland loch, running in
immediately opposite, the distance is only eight
miles. From the Alberni canal on the west, to
Valdez inlet, called by the natives Saatlam, on the
east, the distance is only twenty-two miles ; again,
$b the extreme south, a rough journey of about
seven miles brings the pedestrian from Sanetch, on
the Canal de Haro, to the end of Esquimault harbour
on the Straits of Fuca ; and from Nitinat, between
Barclay Sound and Port St. Juan on the southwest, in a day and a half the savages pass over to
the valley of the Cowichin in the south-east.    The W&Nki-
general aspect of the country throughout the island
from the seaward is peculiarly uninviting. Dark,
frowning cliffs sternly repel the foaming sea, as it
rushes impetuously against them; and beyond these,
with scarcely any interval of level land, rounded
hills, densely" covered with fir, rise one above the
other in dull, uninteresting monotony ; over these
again appear bare mountains of trap rock, witfat|
peaks jagged like the edge of a saw, a veritable
Montserrat, forming a culminating ridge, which
may be said to run with little intermission, like a
backbone, all down the centre of the island, from
the northern to the southern extremity; nor does
a nearer approach present one with many more
favourable features in the aspect of the country: ■:■
" The soil under cultivation is sometimes a rich
vegetable mould,* in other places a clayey loam, and
in othei's somewhat sandy. It produces excellent
wheat crops. Mr. Baillie has raised forty-four
bushels to the acre off some land which he farms
for the Hudson Bay Company, about three miles
from Victoria. Heavy crops of peas have also
been raised in the same place. I myself, at Stoke, I
raised excellent crops of wheat, barley, oats, .peas?-1
beans, turnips, and potatoes ;t Swedish turnips in
* "The soil, where it is richest, in the river deltas, the
valleys, and the plains, usually consists of black vegetable
mould, six inches to three feet in depth, overlying a deep-
substratum of clay, gravel, or sand ; it is generally covered
with a luxuriant crop of fern, which it is very difficult to
kill and tedious to eradicate."—Pembebton, 1860.
t " Turnips as large as hassocks, radishes as large as beets '
particular did remarkably well, and produced a
very heavy crop. I imported all the seed, except
for wheat, peas, and potatoes, from Van Diemen's
Land, through the Sandwich Islands. In all arable
portions of the island the land is favourable to the
production of green crops of every description;
vegetables also grow particularly well, and esculent
roots of all sorts attain a great size. Oats have
generally been a failure, probably owing to their
iferVing been sown too late in the season.
"The prevailing winds along the coast in winter
are from the south-east, varying from that to the
south-west, and with occasional heavy northerly
gales ; the prevailing winds in the summer are from
the north and north-west. Generally speaking, the
climate is both agreeable and healthy ; and not a
single death that I am aware of has occurred among
adults from disease during the six years that I have
been acquainted with the island."
On the subject of timber, another writer, Mr.
Pemberton, Surveyor-General of Vancouver Island,
" Of oak there are two kinds; the timber is
weak, and the trees usually show symptoms of
" If curled maple is in England valuable for
furniture, as I am told it is, it may be of service to
some one to know, that it grows in abundance on
the banks of the rivers in these colonies.
or mangolds, and bushels of potatoes to a single stalk, are
nothing astonishing."—Pembebton.
>fB 62
" The trunks of the arbutus grow very large, and
the wood in colour and texture so much resembles
box, that for many purposes it might supply the
uses of   the latter.     It  is, however,  specifically \
"The   country  also   produces   cedar, or  rather I
cypress, juniper, yew, birch, poplar, sorbis, &c, but
I never noticed ash, beech, or elm."
"Nanaimo," continues Colonel Grant, "is a
flourishing little settlement; there is good anchorage all over the harbour, which is commodious, and
sheltered from all winds ; there is a rise and fall of
fifteen feet at spring tides, and of about twelve
feet at ordinary times; it is an excellent place
to lay up and repair vessels : the bottom is in
general a soft mud. The land in the immediate
neighbourhood is poor and sandy, but there is a
prairie about two miles off of some three or four
miles in extent, on which the soil is rich and the
surface tolerably level. At the south-west extremity
of the harbour, a river flows in; it is about fifty '
yards wide at the mouth, with an average depth of
about five feet, and a current of four knots per
hour. About seven miles north-west of Nanaimo
along the coast, is another excellent harbour, called
' Tutuis,' where also the carboniferous strata prevail,
and there is a seam of coal, reported by the Indians
to be some four feet thick.
" The coal at Nanaimo was first discovered by
Mr. Joseph M'KLay, in May, 1850, who was directed
to it by the Indians of the neighbourhood.    On
the 15th of September, the same seam, called 'the
Douglas seam,' was discovered on Newcastle Island,
and the Indians soon got out 200 tons. A pit was
commenced by Mr. Gilmore, with ten regular
miners, on the 17th September, and a shaft sunk
to a depth of fifty feet, being through twelve feet
of alluvium, eight feet of sandstone, and thirty
feet of shale ; the situation of the pit is at the
north-west extremity of Nanaimo Harbour. Here
they struck another seam of from six to seven feet
in thickness, lying on conglomerate ; they are now
regularly working this seam in several parallel galleries, already extending to a considerable distance
underground. The seam here runs nearly level,
with a dip of only some seven degrees to the southwest ; the greatest quantity of coal that has been
raised from it was at the rate of 120 tons per week
with ten regular miners.
" The same seam, 'the Douglas,' which was worked
by the Indians on Newcastle Island and Commercial Inlet, has been discovered by Mr. M'Kay, who
plied the pick and shovel indefatigably in search of
«j&, cropping out on a peninsula at the upper end of
Nanaimo Harbour ; to this they are working a gallery on a level from the beach, and have already
progressed several yards with it; the gallery is
some six feet high and four or five feet broad. It
is solidly lined and roofed with square timber; they
excavate at the rate of about one yard per diem,
one miner picking and propping, aud two shovelling
and carrying the dirt, &c, away. 64
"Work has thus been done at four different places:
by the Indians at Newcastle Island and at Commercial Inlet, and by miners on the peninsula above-
mentioned. These were all on the same seam of
coal, which is called ' the Douglas;' the greatesJtl
thickness which has been anywhere seen of it is
eight feet; its average maybe six. It is distinguished
by containing eight inches of fire-clay, and in the
lower part of it are some seven or eight inches of
cannel coal. In the other seam through which the* I
pit is sunk, and which is the only one now worked^;'
the coal is of a precisely similar quality, though
without the fire-clay. Doubts having been entertained as to whether all these seams were not identical one with another, though raised by various
causes, in different places and at different elevations, a bore has been sunk close by the pit to endeavour to discover whether the other seam, called
jj the Douglas,' does not exist below. They have already
gone through some sixteen feet nine inches of conglomerate, and forty-five of soft sandstone with
layers of shale ; they then reached a coal of similarr \
quality to that in the Douglas seam, and after
boring twenty inches through it, came to a fire-clay,!'!
through which they had gone twelve inches when
the writer of this letter left on the 20th December.
These strata lie at a considerable inclination, and
are nearly similar to those which overlie the
Douglas coal at Commercial Inlet, which are as
" Conglomerate, twenty feet; silicious sandstone, wfc^
eight feet; shale, two feet; alternate layers, shale
and sandstone, fourteen feet; sandstone, two feet;
shale, one foot four inches; sandstone, two feet;
Shale, four inches; sandstone, four feet. Total,
fifty-three feet eight inches.
" It is therefore probable that the coal which has
been reached in the bore will be found to be identical with tbe Douglas seam, in which case there will
be two seams, each of an average depth of six feet,
overlying each other, at an interval of from fifty to
sixty feet. The pit is situated within a few yards
of the water-side, and vessels drawing sixteen feet
can anchor close to it; the Hudson Bay Company
have brought out an excellent engine, by which
they raise the coal, and pump out such water as is
accumulated in the pit; they are not much troubled
with water, and all the pumping that is necessary
does not keep the engine going above a quarter of
the time.
" It is the opinion of the head miner that coal
may be found anywhere within a circumference of
two miles from Nanaimo, at a distance of fifty feet
below the surface. Altogether there are few places
to be met with where coal can be worked as easily
and exported as conveniently as from Nanaimo, and
it will be the Hudson Bay Company's own fault if
they do not make a very profitable speculation of
their possessions there.
" Altogether about 2000 tons of coal have as yet
been exported from Nanaimo, of which one-half
may be said to have been worked and loaded by
F m
Indians, and the other worked by the miners. The
first coal exported from the pit was brought by the ■:.
William to San Francisco, in May, 1853 : it is sold
by the Hudson Bay Company at Nanaimo at
$11 per ton, the Indian women bringing it alongside the vessels in their canoes.. At San Francisco
it now (January, 1854) sells at $28 per ton. The
greatest objection is that it burns too quickly,
and leaves behind a good deal of slag, which makes
it difficult to keep the furnaces clean: it is, how- ;
ever, a very strong, rieh coal, and full of sulphurous
The value of the coal deposit at Nanaimo has of
late attracted considerable attention, and a company, entitled the " Vancouver Coal-mining Company (limited)," is already in course of formation.
From the prospectus, issued on the 29 th March,
1862, it appears that the capital of this association
will be 100,000*., in 10,000 shares of 10*. each, and
that of this sum the shareholders are expected to pay
a deposit of 1*. per share on application, and 11.10s.
on allotment.
As we regard this branch of thesubject as one of
dseep interest to those who may now or hereafter
seek a home in British Columbia, or who may be
induced to invest capital in that colony, we annex
herewith the heads of the prospectus, which fully
explains all the attendant circumstances and the
true nature and extent of the enterprise.
"This Company is formed for the purpose of
acquiring and working the extensive   and   well- VANCOUVER COAL-MINING  COMPANY.
known Coal Fields situate at Nanaimo, on the east
'of Vancouver Island.
" The property comprises 6193 acres of land, and
'includes the safe and commodious Harbour of
Nanaimo, in which are jetties for the loading of
L"vessels at all periods of the tide, and the Islands of
Newcastle and Douglas ; on the former of which
coal, of a superior quality for steam purposes, is
:being worked, the latter also containing coal.
" The circumstances under which this property is
'acquired are unusually favourable. From 1848
until 1859 the island of Vancouver was held' in
t'trust for the Crown by the Hudson Bay Company,
who, on the discovery of coal in various parts of the
Island, determined to engage in the working of the
most promising seams. After full and careful examination of all the localities where coal was found,
selection was made of Nanaimo, as offering coal of
better quality and more abundant than elsewhere,
with great facilities for its working and shipment.
Dwelling-houses and stores were erected, wharves
constructed, all necessary plant and machinery and
^parties of miners sent out from England, and a
large  outlay incurred in the   formation   of  the
'establishment and gradual extension of the works.
Coal in abundance, and of a superior quality, has
since been raised, fully proving the extent and
value of these coal fields.
" The surrender of their territorial rights over the
Island has induced the Hudson Bay Company to
sell these coal fields, with all the machinery, plant, IISBe:'     sSBHS^S
and buildings, barges, &c, as they feel it expedient
no longer to carry on in a locality apart from their
future sphere of action, an undertaking so foreign to
their general objects and purposes.
"Hnder these circumstances, a provisional contract has been entered into for the purchase of the
property, at the price of 40,000*., including all buildings, machinery, &c, part thereof—viz., 15,000*.—to
remain on mortgage at 5 per cent, for five years.
In addition to the 25,000*. of the purchase-money,
which is to be paid within six months, a sum of
8000*. to 10,000*. will be required for sinking
additional shafts and making tramways to the
" Upon a capital of 50,000*., which, after providing for the purchase and first outlay, will amply
suffice to work the coal fields so as to keep pace
with the increasing demand, the directors can with
certainty calculate on a profit of not less than 20
per cent. 1000 tons weekly could be raised by this
expenditure, and could be readily sold at the price
of 25s. per ton. Mr. Nicol, the energetic manager,
calculated, in October, 1861, the cost of raising and
shipping the coal, on the average of several years,
at 16s. per ton—viz., raising the coal to the surface,
10s.; shipping and agency, 5s.; and taxes, Is. This,
at the present price of 25s. per ton, will give a
profit of 9s. per ton; and a sale of even 500 tons
weekly would, therefore, ensure a profit of 225*. a
week, or nearly 12,000*. a year, upon the estimated
expenditure of 50,000*. '
"But the capability of the mines and the prospects
of the demand are by no means limited to this
quantity. Vancouver Island must become the
great centre of the commerce of the North Pacific,
and a chief coaling dep6t for all the steamers
engaged in that commerce. Steam navigation is
rapidly increasing within the Strait of Fuca, on
<the Frazer, and on the Columbian Lakes. The
selection of the noble harbour of Esquimault as the
principal station for the British Navy in the Pacific,
and the formation of an Admiralty Coal Dep6t
there, will have an immediate and important effect
on the demand for the coal of Nanaimo, which has
been already extensively used in the steamers of
the Royal Navy. Coal of equal quality has not
been found on the whole Pacific coast of North
America, and the coal fields of Nanaimo are extensive enough to supply all the demand that can
thus arise. There is besides a large consumption of
coal in San Francisco and the other cities on or
near the coast. San Francisco alone consumes
14,000 tons a month, the greater portion of which
has hitherto been brought from England or the
.eastern coast of the States, and has been sold as
Jiigh as 51. per ton. Latterly, some portion of this
supply, and especially that for the gas works, has
«ome from Nanaimo, and Mr. Nicol expresses a very
confident opinion, that, by a slight reduction in the
price, the sale of the Nanaimo coal there might be
very largely increased."
I South of Nanaimo," pursues Grant, " there are 3iJP
three ranges of islands, running parallel with each
other, between the mainland of Vancouver IslandI
and what is generally laid  down as such on a34a»
charts hitherto published.    The channels between
these islands are too intricate for a sailing vessel of
large size to attempt with any certainty or secu-■
rity.    I found no bottom at twenty fathoms in any
part between Nanaimo and Sanetch.    The bottom
throughout these passages is rocky and uneven,
and in the narrows the current sets a vessel towards
the rocks, without her helm having any power to
guide her away from them.
" Fifteen miles northward of Cape Bonilla is
Cape Carrasco, the southern point of the entrance
to Barclay Sound, a broad bay open to the southwest ; its breadth at the entrance is about fifteen
miles, and it runs inland with nearly the same
breadth to a distance of seventeen miles. A number of rocky islets stretch across the entrance ;
leaving, however, two broad, open channels, both
towards the south-east side. One of these channels is about a mile and a half broad ; it is close
to the eastern shore of the Sound; the other is
about three miles and a quarter broad, and is a
little farther to the north-west; it cannot be mistaken, being clearly visible from the outside, and
also distinctly marked by a very singular rock, with^
only three fir-trees on it, appearing precisely like
the three masts of a vessel. The channel is immediately to the north of this rock, and the Sound
is more open after entering within it.    There are, BARCLAY SOUND.
however, a few islands interspersed all over it, most
of them inhabited by small fishing families of the
savages. There is anchorage near all these islets,
with good holding-gi-ound, but the water deepens
s uddenly, and vessels in search of anchorage, have
to stand very close in-shore. The Honolulu
anchoi*ed in ten fathoms water within sixty yards
of the beach, under the lee of an island called
Satchakol, about two miles within the Ship Bock
above mentioned.
" On the eastern shore, about four miles from the
outside, there is a small inlet, called by the natives
\ Tsuchetsa,' with a small tribe living on it, the
chief of whom is called ' Klayshin.' The inlet is
about 300 yards broad at its entrance, and branches
out into two arms from seventy to eighty yards
wide each. The first of these arms extends in an
easterly direction for about one mile and a half,
sometimes narrowing to a breadth of forty yards,
sometimes expanding to 200 ; it ends in an open bay
500 yards broad.' The land on either side is broken
and rocky, though not high; there appears little
soil, and the timber is stunted and scrubby. There,
is no open land either on this or on the other arm,
which runs in for about .a mile to the south, parallel with the shores of the Sound. The land on
either side of that arm is level woodland, but the
soil is not rich and the wood is worthless, being principally stunted Canadensis. Generally speaking, the
country all round Barclay Sound is broken and
rocky, thickly covered with useless wood, and unfit 72
for cultivation or settlement. There is no truth in
reports which have been circulated of there being
coal on Barclay Sound ; the Indians, however, describe some coal as existing at Munahtah, in the
country of the Cojucklesatuch, some three days'
journey into the interior, at' the back of Barclay
Sound. At the back of Barclay Sound, on a small
river, about two days' journey into the interior, live
the only inland tribe whose existence is known
of in Vancouver Island. They are called the
' Upatse Satuch,' and consist only of four families,
the remainder having been killed by the Nanaimo
"About seven miles to the south-east of Barclay
Sound, and between it and Cape Flattery, is a bay
which has never yet been mentioned, called by the
natives 'Chadukutl.' This bay is about three
miles broad, and runs back a considerable distance.
A rocky barrier runs across the entrance, leaving a
channel only about 100 yards broad, which no vessel
should attempt to enter for the first time without
having an Indian pilot. At the upper end of the
bay ruus in a fine river, about 200 yards broad at
the mouth, and there is a frontage of about three
miles of fine level woodland, running apparently a
considerable distance inland. The bay is about
. eight miles deep, and its shores are inhabited by one
tribe about 400 in number.
I The next harbour north of Barclay Sound is
Clayoquot, where there are established 3000 Indians,
who are anxious   to trade  with  the whites, but CLAYOQUOT—NOOTKA—KOSKEEMO.
as vet none but Americans have been among them.
A bar with from four to six fathoms on it runs across
the entrance to the harbour. There is good anchor-
age inside, and shelter from all winds; the arm
runs a considerable distance into the interior, but
there is no open land' that I am aware of, and the
surface of the woodland is rocky and broken.
Clayoquot is distant about sixty-five miles from
Port St. Juan. From this northward to Nootka
there is no land along the sea-board that has
the appearance of being available for any useful
"At Nespod, a little north of Nootka, coal is
reported by the Indians. Nespod is called Port
Brooks on the charts.
" At Koskeemo, north of Nespod, and opposite to
Beaver Harbour, a seam of coal, two feet in thickness, has also been discovered, but neither from its
situation nor its nature can it be worked to any
advantage. There are three arms in Koskeemo, in
either of which there are good shelter and anchorage
for vessels. Immense quantities of fish are caught
here by the Indians. Between Clayoquot and Nootka
is Fort San Raphael or Achosat, which is a bight of
the sea, running inland three or four miles. There
is no available land near it. The water is deep, but
close in to the inner end there is anchorage near the
shore and good shelter.
"From Koskeemo round the north to Beaver
Harbour there is no land that we are aware of fit
for purposes  of colonization  or settlement;   the 74
coast is rocky, though not high, and a vessel would
do well to keep clear of it in winter. A very
heavy sea is constantly running there, and thei*e is
no known harbour to which vessels can put in for
" The women of Vancouver Island have seldom or
ever good features ; they are almost invariably pug-
nosed.    They have, however, frequently a pleasing
expression, and there is no lack of intelligence in
their dark hazel eyes ; they are more apt to receive*
instruction than  the other  sex.    They ai*e  ready >
with  the   needle, naturally industrious   in   theaKl
habits, and of their own accord weave very inge-f
nious  patterns from  the  coarse  materials  above;
" The colour of the natives of Vancouver Island
is a reddish brown. The features of both sexes aa?el
very much disfigured by the custom prevalent
among them of flattening their heads. This is
effected during infancy, when the child is a few
weeks old and while the skull is yet soft, by placing
three or four pieces of the inner bark of the fir or
cedar on the top of the forehead, and binding them
tightly round the head.   Here they are left until the
* "The Indian women take a full share of labour—even
more is carried by them than by men ; they were paddhnjl
with as much strength. One woman was steering a canoe,!
and came very close to us as we passed it. She had eight
silver rings on two fingers of her left hand, and six bracelets.-
They have ear-rings also, and sometimes armlets. These
ornaments are made out of silver dollars."—Bishop of Columbia's Journal of a Four in B.C.—1860.
desired distortion has been  thoroughly  effected.
This process completely flattens the forehead, and.
I indeed flattens the whole front face ; the effect is
! hideous, and it is a question whether it does or does
■ not interfere with the intellect of the child.    I am
i inclined to think it does not, as the brain is not
i injured, though its position in the head is undoubtedly altered.    The baby of these latitudes is a most
independent little fellow.    Swathed in his covering
of soft bark, and bound tightly up in an outer case
or hammock of stronger bark, he is suspended by
a hempen string to the extremity of one of the
lower boughs of an overhanging fir or cedar tree ;
9SB.6. there, while his mother strays to a short distance through the woods in quest of roots or berries,
the gentle zephyr rocks him to sleep, and sings to
him a sweet lullaby,  as it murmurs through the
leaves of his natural bower."
On the subject of stock, a writer already quoted
makes the following remarks :—
" Of stock, every variety, good, bad, and indifferent,
can be procured on the coast.
" The American horned cattle are particularly fine,
and numbers of Durhams and Devons have been
imported to San Francisco; the Spanish cattle,
which are the most numerous, are smaller, and .very
like the Guernseys at home.
" In Vancouver Island the best breeds of sheep,
both Southdowns and Merinoes, are abundant.
" The native horses of the country make admirable saddle hacks, and are most enduring, but have a «v
singular repugnance to draught.   The carriage horse
is constantly met with."
Governor Douglas, in a despatch to the Colonial
Secretary, dated July 16th, 1861, says:—
" A good deal of running stock has been brought
in for sale ; but, with the exception of eight or ten
persons, there are no farmers in the district.    One
of those, Mr. McLean, lately of the Hudson Bay
Company's service, has settled on a beautiful spot,
near the  debouch of Hat River, and  is rapidl^H
bringing his land into cultivation.    He has a great i
number of horses and cattle of the finest American \
breeds; and from the appearance of the crops there
is.every prospect that his labour and outlay will be
well rewarded.    He is full of coui'age, and as coaj£J
fident as deserving of success.    He entertains.n/tj
doubt whatever of the capabilities of the soil, which
he thinks will, under proper management, produce;
any kind of grain or root crops.    The only evil he
seriously apprehends is the want of rain and thei
consequent droughts of summer, which has induced-l
him to bring a supply of water from a neighbouring
stream, by which he can at pleasure irrigate the
whole of his fields.''' 77
The Route—The Outfit—What to take and what not to take
—Prices of Provisions—Female Emigration—"A Returned Digger."
The ways to this Eldorado are several. There is,
first, the route to the Isthmus of Panama. You
leave Southampton on the 2nd or 17th of the month
(unless those dates fall on a Sunday, and then on the
day following), and are due at Colon or Aspinwall in
about nineteen days; and since the completion of the
Panama Railroad, the Pacific Mail Steamship Company have made new arrangements, by which each
steamer lies over at Panama for two weeks, so as to
make it certain that she will be ready to start at the
appointed time.
The fare altogether, including the transit across
the Isthmus, is 35*. and upwards, and the journey
to the gold fields occupies, under the new and
improved arrangements, about forty days. From
Aspinwall to San Francisco is about fourteen days
by steamer; thence you travel, always by steam, to
the mouth of Frazer's River, and from that point you
are conveyed in a similar manner to the theatre of BRITISH COLUMBIA.
operations—the gold fields. Here is the Bishop
of Columbia's description of a Frazer-river steamboat in 1860 :—
" Some things in Columbia I was prepared iorM
but I certainly did not expect to see so good accom-1
modation as afforded by the steamboats.    The co'sjjl
of the Moody was 2000*.    It pays the shareholders!
nearly 50 per cent.    It could accommodate  200;
passengers.    I had a cabin, the three nights I wasj
on board, superior to that I had in the La Plata oil
Solent—ships of the West India Mail Company.'■
Provisions were good and abundant.    Thus, for
dinner the first day, soup,  sturgeon, mutton,  beef,!
bacon, potatoes, beans, carrots, apple-tart.  For break-\
fast there were fried sturgeon, bacon, mutton-chops,
hot rolls, bread, butter, tea, coffee, &c. &c.     Silver
forks and spoons ; everything very clean and well!
cooked.    Prices are high;  four shillings a meal,!
besides the passage  money.     The captain was  a
Scotchman ; the purser an American citizen,  born
in Ireland; the steward an African; the steward'si
boy a Chinaman ; the pilot an American, and so on.
Such is a Frazer-river steamboat."
An eminent firm in London* has announced
that it will despatch from the London Docks
on the 24th of May, 1862, the iron screw
steamship Tynemouth, of 1650 tons gross register,
and 600 indicated horse-power, for Victoria,
Vancouver Island,   calling,   if   required,   at   San
* W. S. Lindsay & Co., of Austin Friars-. FARES TO VANCOUVER ISLAND.
Francisco.*     This    fine   ship   has   three    decks^
with great space and very superior accommodation
- * The rates of passage-money are as follows :—
First Class Cabin.—Prom eighty guineas upwards, accord-
"fiig to accommodation required, including cabin furniture, bed-
jding, &c, and a liberal table, but exclusive of wines and spirits.
Second Class.—Forty guineas each,, including provisions
according to an ample scale, which will be found annexed,
t>ut exclusive of liquors and cabin furniture.
Tfiifd Class.—Thirty guineas each, including provisions
; according to the Government scale, as annexed.
Children of twelve years and upwards will rank as adults;
those from one to twelve years as half; infants, free.
Oue-half of the passage-money must be paid on securing
the passage, and the balance not later than the 20th May.
First cabin passengers will be allowed 20 cubic feet of baggage freight free ; second and third class, 10 cubic feet. All
excess will be charged for at the rate of 5s. per foot.
The ship carries an experienced surgeon.
A stewardess will be provided for attendance to the cabin
The scale of provisions will be as follows ;—
For second-class passengers, each adult per week.
1 lb. Preserved meat.
,,   Soup and bouilli.
,,   Assorted soups.
„   Preserved and assorted
„   India beef.
„   Mess pork.
„   Rice.
,,   Bread.
T1   Fleurv.
„   OatmeaL
pint Peas.
„   Preserved milk,
lb. Raw sugar.
,,   Refined ditto.
2 oz. Tea.
i lb. Coffee.
£ „   Butter.
\ „   Cheese.
1 ,,   Raisins and currants.
| „   Suet.
J pint Pickles.
i   ii   Vinegar.
6 oz. Lime-juice;
\   ,,   Mustard.
i   ,,   Pepper.
1 lb. Preserved potatoes.
1 oz. Salt.
21 quarts Water. ;■■
for cabin and especially intermediate passengers.
She has just been fitted with new engines and
boilers, and all the most recent improvements in
hull, spars, aud machinery.
In connexion with this branch of the matter, it
is proposed to introduce  some remarks respecting?
the proposed  Columbian Emigration Society,  intended to embrace both sexes.    At the meeting of*
the Columbian Mission in  London, on the 27th
February last, Mr. Ga'rrett observed on this point:
—"There   is   another   subject  which   has   been
alluded to to-day, and which has met with the"
strongest sympathy—I mean the Columbian Emi-;
gration Society, which, with the Divine blessing,
may become a powerful handmaid to the Mission.
For third-class passengers, each adult per week.
5| lb. Biscuit.   .
1 „ Preserved meat.
^ ,, Soup and bouilli.
1 „ Mess pork.
1J ,, India beef.
^ ,, Preserved and salt fish.
2 „ Flour.
1 „ Oatmeal.
6 oz. Suet.
J lb. Raisins and currants.
§ pint Peas.
^ lb. Preserved potato.
4 lb. Rice.
1 ,,  Raw sugar.
If oz. Tea.
3£ „   Coffee.
6 ,,   Butter.
2 „   Salt.
i ,,   Mustard.
i >,   Pepper.
1 gill Vinegar.
1 ,,   Pickles.
6 oz. Lime-juice.
21 quarts Water.
Second and. third class passengers will Have to find bed
bedding,   towels,  knives,  forks,  spoons, plates,   cups  and
saucers, water-can, &c.  •
Wine, beer, and spirits will be procurable on board,  at'
reasonable prices.—Extract from Prospectus.
Let me give a distinct idea of what we wish. The
latest time at which emigrants ought to leave Great
Britain is the 30th of May. On that day we hope
that a band of emigrants—respectable people, people
fitted to take that position in life in the colony
which Mr. Brown in his letter points out—will go
forth. We hope we shall not only find the proper
people, but have the funds with which they may be
sent. A suggestion of a very practical nature has
been made by a gentleman who is well versed in
works of benevolence of this nature. It is this.
At Coventry, at the present moment, there is an
amount of distress which it is almost impossible for
the local resources at Coventry to relieve. If it
were possible to show many of those who are there
in a state of actual distress, a high road by which
they may secure for their industry and skill a sphere
in a new land—by which they may find a home,
and a vigorous one, in this distant colony—great
good would no doubt be done; and this new Emigration Society might thus be made a valuable
agent in a great work." *
* The movement commenced at the Columbia Mission
meeting, held at the London Tavern on the 27th March, under
j (the presidency of the Lord Mayor, has already made good
progress.     Amongst   the  contributors   are   Miss   Burdett
j Coutts, 1001.; the Hudson's Bay Company, 1001.; Messrs.
Cavan, Lubbock, and Co., and Anthony Gibbs and Son, 100&.
; each; an anonymous subscriber gives 501.   About 2000Z.
will be required to commence operations on a good footing.
The plan upon which the emigration is to be carried out is
such as to ensure the fullest encouragement and protection
, G 82
An equally expeditious, route is that by which
passengers are conveyed to New York by the,
Liverpool, New York, and Philadelphia Company'^
steamers, leaving Liverpool every Wednesday, ancjgi
thence by the Atlantic .and Pacific Steam-ship Line-
on the 1st, 11th, and 21st of each month. Th«
length of passage is also about thirty-five days£
The passage-money from London to San Franciscoji-
is 28*. 13s.*
If you select the overland route, the hotel bills on
your way form a large item; but then you get to.
the diggings in probably little more than six weekgaj
and before your friend, who has economized and
gone round by Cape Horn, has made his appearances
you have realized, perhaps^ a little fortune.    Meaaj
whilejthe first-class passenger round Cape Homliaaij
paid from 60Z. to 7oh 10s., the second-class, froi%|
to females.   The friends of the mission in England and thtj
Bishop of Columbia co-operate heartily in the work.— Daily
News, March 22, 1862.
*Monnert and Co's. General Outfitting Warehouse, 165,
Fenchurch-street.—A large assortment of clothing, ready-
made linen, hosiery, &c, is kept ready for immediate use.
Sea-bedding, chests, cabin and camp furniture of every description ; iron bedsteads, mess utensils, portable stoves, tents-1
&c.     The   Ladies'   Department   is   superintended   by   anl
experienced female.    Cabins fitted with bedding and every!
requisite on the shortest notice.    First class; 41. 10s. and!
upwards ; second class, from 11. Is. to 21. 15s.   Bedding and!
mess utensils, complete for a steerage passenger, from 10s. 6d.fl
to 21s.   Lists, with prices, forwarded upon receipt of a postage!
stamp.    Passengers'luggage received from the country andII
warehoused free of charge.   Berths fitted. '
40Z. to 521. 10s.; and it Will be four months before
he lands at Vancouver. There is another route
through Canada and the United States, over the
Pocky Mountains. The traveller by this route
pays from lol. to 271., according to class, booking throughout from London to St. Paul in Minnesota. Thence to Pembina is 450 miles, thence to
Carlton House 600 miles, thence to Edmonton 400
miles, thence to Frazer's River (a branch of Frazer)
200 miles ; total from St. Paul, 1650. It has been
estimated,that,. " Viewing the facilities afforded by
the face of the country, and the continuous line of
the Hudson Bay Company's posts, this journey can
be accomplished in seventy days, at an. expense to a
company of ten, persons of $180 eaeh."
It may be useful to know that parcels, and packages are forwarded to Vancouver Island and British
Columbia,, by every opportunity, through Wells,
Fargo, & Co.'s express, whose agents are Fives and
Macey, 61, King William-street, London-bridge.
A person whohas had practical experience, says:—
" Spring is tbe best season in which to arriva
The pons ctsinor/um is^ how to get-there and at what
cost. The shortest route is by.the Isthmus of Panama, which can be. reached vid New York, or by
the West. Indiji steamers, to St. Thomas's. The
latter route ought to be adopted only in winter and
spring, as .the emigrant may be detained some days
both at St. Thomas's and. Panama, waiting for the
connecting steamers, .and both those places are subject to the. visitations of yellow fever.    St. Thomas's.
G 2
has been much maligned for its heat and insalubrity,
but I heard a Glasgow skipper say it was the finest
climate he was ever in, as he was ' aye drinking and
aye dry.' Whether by St. Thomas's or New Yor2|
no emigrant need calculate on reaching his destination under 501. or 60Z."
The following details as to the requisite outfit
will probably be acceptable :—
1 beaverteen jacket (warm lined)
1 ditto waistcoat with sleeves
1 ditto trousers (warm lined) .
1 duck ditto ....
1 coloured drill jacket
1 ditto trousers
1 ditto waistcoat
1 pilot overcoat or jacket
Or, 1 waterproof coat
2 blue serge shirts, or Jersey frocks
1 felt hat       ....
1 Brazil straw hat .
6 blue striped cotton shirts, each
1 pair of boots        .        .        .
1 pair of shoes
4 handkerchiefs, each     .        .
4 pairs worsted hose, each
2 pairs cotton hose, each
1 pair braces
4 towels, each
Razor, shaving-brush, and glass
s.    d.
1 warm cloak, with a cape      .                 .        6    0
2 bonnets, each
3 10
1 small shawl
2    3
1 stuff dress   .
11    0
2 print ditto, each  .
6    0
! 6 shifts, each .
1    3
i 2 flannel petticoats, each
2    6
1 stuff ditto    .        .
3    9
z twill cotton ditto
2    0
1 pair of stays
2    6
3 caps, each   .
0 10
4 pocket handkerchiefs, each
0    3
2 net ditto for neck, each
0    5
4 nightcaps, each   .
0    7
4 sleeping jackets, each  .
1    4
2 black worsted hose, each
0 10
4 cotton ditto, each
0 10
1 pair of shoes
2    9
1 ditto boots .
5    0
6 towels, each
0    4
Each person also requires—
1 bowl and can, 2s. 3d.; 1 knife and fork, 1 deep
tin plate, 1 pint drinking mug, 1 table-spoon, 1 tea
spoon, Is. 6c?.
An assortment of needles and thread, Is.
i  2 lbs. of marine soap, at id.
3 sheets, each Is.
Si comb and hair brush, Is.
2 pots blacking, each i-^d.
I 86
'Iff $
2 shoe brushes, each 7&d.\ > .  ,   •     .
A married couple requrre
only one set of   thes
articles,  but of lar
1 pair of blankets, 7s.
1 counterpane, Is. 3d.
1 strong chest, with lock
8s. 9d.
1 linen clothes bag, Is. 9d.
1 mattress and pillow, 5s.
Cost of above outfit for a single man, about £5 10
Ditto ditto single woman „ 5 15
Ditto        ditto   married couple  „      10 10
But we believe that the outfit for Vancouverl
Island will, in a great measure, depend on the route
intended to be taken, and also whether it is intended on arrival to proceed to the diggings, or to
adopt farming or mercantile pursuits.    In eithei
case the party should apply to a respectable house,
accustomed to supply articles adapted to the colony.
Monnery & Co., 165,   Fenchurch-street,   Londona
supply, gratis, an illustrated price list, suitable for
all classes.
For the overland route, bedding and mess utensila
are not required for the journey ; but it is advisableS
if intending to proceed up the country, to take the
same packed in a waterproof valise, as the same is
purchasable here at half the price which it fetches
in the colony, and can always be disposed of to
advantage if not ultimately wanted. The following
list of necessaries should be provided :—18 white or
printed shirts, 6 coloured flannel-shirts, 6 nioht-
shirts, 3 dozen collars, 24 pocket handkerchiefs, 3
cravats, 24 pair cotton socks or stockings, 6 pair wool
do., 2 pair braces, 6 pair drawers, 6 under-waistcoats,
1 tweed suit, 1 pilot coat and trousers, 3 pair duck or
jean trousers, 2 linen or alpaca coats, 2 serge shirts, ;1
pair strong leather gaiters^ 1 each, straw and felt hat,
waterproof coat, trousers and hat, 2 or 3 pair strong
boots, and 2 overland trunks or chests.    The whole
of the above may be obtained for about 15Z. or 20?.,
hbut the present stock of clothing may be deducted
from above, this list being the entire quantity that
each person should provide themselves with for the
overland route.    If it is the intention of the emi-
agrant  to   proceed   by  ship   the  whole   distance,
-iSuflicient under-clothing   should be taken to last
>irom four to five months, as only small articles can
be washed on the voyage.    First-class passengers
■will be required   to find their own bedding and
.-cabin requisites,but not mess utensils; the second and
third-class passengers will be required to find bedding and mess utensils, viz. : a mattress, 2 blankets,
a counterpane or wool rug, 4 pair sheets, 4 pillow
cases, a cabin lamp, a washstand or basin and ring
to hold the same, a can or keg to hold the daily
supply of water, 2 knives and forks, 2 spoons, 2
metal or enamel plates, 2 cups and saucers, 1 drinking mug, 2 lbs. yellow and 3 lbs marine soap for
.^washing with sea water, and a bag with lock to
contain the soiled linen.   The whole can be obtained
from 21s. to 60s., according to quality.
If  the emigrant purposes to   proceed  to the
diggings, a tent, 2 mining shovels, 2 pickaxes, a BRITISH  COLUMBIA.
crowbar, galvanized iron buckets, an American axe,
a set of splitting wedges, and a camp stove should
be provided. If a party is going together, 1 tent
and stove will suffice for six or eight persons.
We think that " A Returned Digger" must
be heard on the question of dietary precautions :—
" If I were asked what provisions I should recommend the emigrant to take as a kind of addition to
those provided by the ship's master, I should say a case
or so of preserved meats and preserved vegetables—
especially the latter, which when good are beyond
all value.
" Another indispensable thing is lime-juice; I
believe that on two or three occasions I owed my
life (and several of my fellow-travellers owed their
lives in turn to me) to a large supply of lime-juice,
which was more than enough to satisfy us all. The
value of this health-preserver cannot be too highly
estimated. If you ask me how much you shall
take, I answer, just as much as ever you like ; for
what you don't want you will be able to give away
in the best-directed charity you ever had a hand in.
You should see the little children enjoy a draught
of water in which a little lime-juice has been
dropped ; it is a real pleasure to look xipon the
sight. This liquor seems to cure bad water, and to
save every creature who uses it carefully from such
illnesses as fever, costiveness, scurvy, and all affections of the skin. There, I have known it to cure
toothache, and even inflamed eyes.   It seems to me, DIETARY.
that on ship-board lime-juice is a regular universal
" Whatever you take with you, leave alone such
things as potted meats and all high-seasoned things,
j which wiU only heat your blood. And I can tell
-you the 'tween-deoks of a ship will send your blood
up to fever heat quite soon enough. Perhaps, however, you should not forget some preserved milk,
which you will find of immense benefit, and a great
luxury, while a few pounds of tea will cheer you,
and will pay you for the outlay upon it."
On the value of temperate habits to any one who
is intending to try his fortunes in the Gold Fields
of British Columbia, it is impossible to dwell too
much. In England, the use of ardent spirits is
pernicious enough; but in British Columbia it is
absolute and speedy destruction. A practical and
intelligent.writer, whom we have already had occasion to quote, is particularly earnest on this
" I tell you plainly, there is nothing so pulls a
man back at gold digging as spirits. They take all
■the strength out of him; they unman him for a
time, and the expense'is so great, spirits (especially
the good) costing an enormous figure at all gold
settlements, that I really think the man who picks
up half an ounce a day, and doesn't spend a grain
of it in drink, makes, in reality, more by the end
of the month than the miner who picks up four
ounces a day, and drinks when it pleases him. As
a proof of the truth of what I am saying, I may 90
declare that the owners of spirit stores are always
safe to make fortunes.
" This warning is worth something, for candidly I
tell you that the temptation to drink is very great.
Whether it is the excitement natural to a gold
digger's life, or whether it is the desire to be luxu.7
rious and dashing, I know not; but this is certain,
that an enormous per-centage of gold diggers (and
this I know from my own observation, and the experience of other sober men much older than I am
myself,) an enormous per-centage of gold diggers, I
say, drink extravagantly of spirits.
U These diggers who i drink their gold,' as they
say in Australia, never are worth anything, and
they generally die in ditches, unless men more temperate than they have been give them hut or tent-
" Again, there is another and still greater argument against spirit drinking as a custom with gold
diggers. It is this : that those who take much
spirits are unable to bear the roughing of a miner's
life; and the consequence is, that they are ready at
any moment to take any disease which may be common; and not unfrequently, in fever times, they fall
•down in scores, and never get up again." 91
Inter-Oceanic Railway—Red River—British Columbia Over-
* land Transit Company—Gold in the Saskatchewan—Proposal for a Line of Electric Telegraph—The Gold Fields of
Cariboo—Their  Riches—Concurrent   Testimony on   this
Point—The Canadian and Local Press.
We trust that the commencement of the Hali^
fax and Quebec Railway will be hailed*as marking out the first portion of that Great Inter-
Oceanic Railway, running wholly through British
territory, which shall not only convey colonization
to our Pacific shoreB, but which commerce shall
adopt as its great highway between the West and
the East. There can be no rational doubt, as Lord
Bury has pointed out, " that our trade in the Pacific
* Oeean with China and with India must ultimately
be carried on through our North American possessions." This Inter-Oceanic Railway would lessen the distance between London and Pekin 9991
miles, and would reduce the journey to thirty
days. It would lessen the distance between Liverpool and Vancouver Island to 5650—the distance
between Liverpool and Panama alone being 4100
—and would secure sea-access at each extremity;
for while, on the Atlantic coast of British North 92
America, the   magnificent   harbour of Halifax is
the only   safe  port   we   have   accessible   at  all
seasons, the rest being closed by ice for six months
of  the  year,   on   the  Pacific   we   have,  in   the
harbour  of   Esquimault,   Vancouver  Island,   the
finest  port  in the world, there being along the
whole remainder  of that coast, thence  to Valpa-.
raiso, scarcely a safe and convenient poxt.    Even
that of San Francisco, as Mr. C. Fitzwilliam, from
personal observation, informs us, is so excessively
large that it cannot be said to be safe at all times.
.   It is therefore gratifying to find  that a  committee has been named for completing the formation of this great scheme, and that Mr. J. Nelson
has been appointed secretary.   On the 1st March,
1862, Mr. Nelson addressed a letter to all the Chambers of Commerce of the United Kingdom, in which
he explained the " postal, commercial, and military
importance of the proposed line of railway com#
munication betweeen Halifax and Quebec."    In an
article in the Canadian News, of the 20th March,
1862, the writer says :—"It would be of immense
advantage to Canada if the Provincial Government
would at once take steps to organise an effective
transportation line   through   Canada  to   British
Columbia, either by the Fort William or the Minnesota route, with escorted caravans from Red Riveij
leaving at regular periods.    This route would be
less expensive than that by Panama, more healthy,
and would prepare the travellers for the labours
before them.    Such an enterprise would draw an RED  RIVER.
immense amount of travel to our shores, create
strong bonds between Canada and the Pacific provinces, and eventually lead to the settlement of
many of the fortunate gold-seekers in our midst.
It would be a great step towards the construction
of the Pacific railway through British territory, by
gradually developing the capabilities of the route,
dispelling prejudices, and proving how small are
the physical difficulties in the way of its accomplishment. Hundreds of thousands of emigrants
will seek British Columbia this year, the greater
part of whom would prefer the land route, if the
Canadian Government would manfully apply itself
to the organisation of effective transportation trains."
Moreover, there is the value of Red River itself*
* I have always felt an active living interest in everything
that concerns what is usually called among us "the Red
River country." In the very heart of the continent, on a
territory 500,000 miles in extent, where Lord Selkirk,
half a century ago, declared that there was field enough for a
population of 30,000,000 souls, the only speck of colonization
is some 6,000 or 7,000 inhabitants in and about Fort Garry.
No American community has ever undergone a sterner apprenticeship to fortune, or been so widely underrated by
Imperial and Canadian statesmen. The greater part, if not all
that region, was an integral part of Canada at the conquest,
and to Canada the people of the Selkirk settlement most
naturally looked for protection against the monopolizing
policy of the Hudson Bay Company. It is not creditable to
us to be forced to admit that hitherto they have looked this
way in vain. No Canadian can have read with satisfaction
the latest intelligence from that kindred community; no
Canadian can learn with satisfaction that it was left for the
infant State of Minnesota, with a census not exceeding alto-
s 94
to recommend the scheme, as well as the recent
discovery of gold on the Saskatchewan River.    A
gether this little island of Montreal, to do for them what they
naturally expect from us—that while they are interrogating
our ministers as to their policy on the Hudson Bay question,
the Americans from St. Paul were steaming down to Fort
Garry. It is not the first time that we have received a
lesson in enterprise from our republican neighbours; to be
our leaders on our own soil, though creditable to them, is
surely not in this case particularly honourable to us.
That Red River country, let me observe, is no inhospitable
desert, repugnant to the increase of the human race. Modern
science has exploded the ancient error, that climate is determined by the latitude. The best authority on the climatology
of our continent, Mr. Lorin Blodgett, has pointed out the
existence of a vast wedge-shaped tract, extending from the
47th deg. to the 60th deg. of northern latitude, 10 degrees of
longitude at the base, containing 500,000 square miles of
habitable land, subject to few and inconsiderable variations
of climate. This author gives a summer of 95 days to Toronto,
and of 90 days-to Cumberland House in 64 deg. north. Mr.
Simon Dawson, from personal observation, compares the
climate of Fort Garry to that of Kingston. Prof. Hind
places its annual mean temperature at 8 deg. lower than that
of Toronto. Herds of buffalo winter in the woodland as far
north as the 60th parallel; Indian corn grows on both banks
of the Saskatchewan ; wheat sown in the valley of the Red
River early in May is gathered in by the end of August. The
solitude and aspect of the country nourish in it a temperature
which one would not expect to find so far northward. Blodgett'
asserts that spring opens almost simultaneously along the
•vast plains from St. Paul to the Mackenzie River; and
assuredly where cattle can winter out, where the rivers are
generally free of ice by the first week of May, where wheat;
can be grown '' twenty years in succession without exhausting
the soil"—there must be something woefully wrong in the
system of.rule, when, after fifty years of settlement, weSnd.a SASKATCHEWAN RIVER.
Canadian paper of good standing has the following,
uuder date of the 27th March, last:—
" The evidence o£ the existence of gold on the
total population of less than 10,000 souk ! The lake and
river system of that region are almost as wonderful as our
own. Lake Winnipeg has an area equal to that of Erie, and
Lake Manitobah nearly half that of Winnipeg. In the valleys-
of the Saskatchewan and Assiniboine, Professor Hind estimates that there are above 11,000,000 acres of " arable land
of the first quality." Of this region about one-half is prairie
to one-half woodland; it is the only extensive prairie country
open to us east of the Rocky Mountains, and if justice was
even now done it, it would become the Illinois or Iowa of our-
future British-American nationality.
And this country is not only valuable in itself, but valuable
for that to which it leads. The distance from a given point
on our side of Lake Superior to navigable water on Frazer'a
River, in British Columbia, does not exceed 2000 miles—
about twice the distance between Boston and Chicago. It
has been shown by every explorer how, with some inconsiderable aids from art, a continuous steam-boat navigation
might be obtained from Lake Winnipeg to the base of the-
Rocky Mountains. By these aids, and corresponding improvements on the other side of the mountains, Toronto might
be brought within ten or twelve days of British Columbia.
But there is a more important consideration connected with
the territory; for we know that through its prairies is to be-
found the shortest and best railroad route to the Pacific.
Every one can understand that the American route from
Western Europe to Asia which lies farthest to the north,
jnust be the most direct. Any one glancing at a globe will
see where the 46th degree parallel leads the eye from the
heart of Germany, through the British Channel, across to the
Gulf of St. Lawrence, and from our gulf westward to the Saskatchewan, to Vancouver's Island—the Cuba of the North
Pacific—and from VancwivSr to the rich and populous, archipelago. a£ Japan.    This course was demonstrated by Captain 96
Saskatchewan is sufficient to satisfy the minds of
the people of Red River, and they propose to fit out
an expedition and engage in the work of practical
exploration. Small quantities of gold have been^
found, and miners are said to be already on the spot •
prepared to commence operations in the spring.
From British Columbia last year we were informed'i
that gold had been found on the Peace River, whiclffl
takes its rise in the Rocky Mountains and has its
course to the eastward of that range. The extreme
probability that gold, which has been found on both
sides of the mountains throughout their entire ex- :
Synge to he 2000 miles shorter between London and
Hong Kong than any other in existence; it has but one
formidable engineering difficulty to be overcome—an elevation of 6000 feet above the sea-level in crossing the Rocky
Mountains into Columbia. Such at least is the carefully/**'
guarded statement of Mr. Stevens, the late American Governor of Washington territory ; and such is said to be the result
arrived at by Captain Palisser's more recent explorations.
By a short tunnel at the favourable pass, the elevation may
be reduced to 5000 feet, " whose gradients," it has been calculated, "need not exceed sixty feet per mile, from the
head of Lake Superior to Puget Sound." An elevation of
5000 feet is not an insuperable obstacle—as has been shown
at Mount Cenis and the Alleghanies. (On the Philadelphia
and Pittsburg road at Altona the gradient of 96 feet to the .
mile has been found practicable.) The name—" Rocky Mountains"—is more formidable to the ear than to the engineer ;
as the latitude has misled us with regard to climate, so the
latitude has been overrated with regard to cost; but the
science of this age once entering upon any experiment, it
will neither be deterred by regions represented as uninhabitai
able, nor by mountains reputed to be impassable.—T. D.
M'Gee, quoted in the Canadian News of the 31st Oct., 1861. SASKATCHEWAN GOLD-FIELDS.
tent within the United States territory, will also be
found on both sides in the British possessions, makes
us receive the evidence of its-existence on the Saskatchewan and Peace Rivers with confidence. We
are happy to find that the people of Red River are
about to test the matter in a practical way by sending out some of their most intelligent and reliable
men. If their expedition is successful in finding
gold, they will secure the introduction of a stream
of emigration through their territory which cannot
but prove immediately advantageous to their interests. In many respects, a gold field upon the Sas-*
katchewan will be more attractive than any other
yet discovered upon this continent, or, indeed, in
any part of the world. That of Nova Scotia is in
deed much nearer civilization, but it is of limited
extent, and is not yet proved to be possessed of the
extraordinary riches of the Rocky Mountain diggings. The Pike's Peak gold fields are geographically as near civilization as those of the Saskatchewan, but the country surrounding them is of the
most sterile character, almost unfit for the residence
of man, and the journey from the east is made over
barren plains not fit for man's habitation. The
Saskatchewan country, on the contrary, is a magnificent prairie with a fertile soil, a climate not
more severe than that of Upper Canada, with fine
navigable streams, and considerable supplies of lignite. California and British Columbia are accessible, it is true, by sea, but the voyage is a long and
expensive one.    The number of persons who will
H 98
resort thither from Europe and the Atlantic coast
of America will necessarily be comparatively small.
The Saskatchewan, on the contrary, can be reached
by the expenditure of a small sum of money, and,
when the routes are properly opened, without fatigue;
or expense.    Already a steam-boat and stage route
has been opened from St. Paul's to Red River, and
a still better one will, we trust, be established from
Fort William ere long.   With a steam-boat on Lake: I
Winnipeg and another upon the Saskatchewan Rivera
the journey from Canada and the United States to
the Saskatchewan gold fields would cost but a few'
dollars in money, and a few days in time.     The
territory is rendered still more attractive by the
fact that it lies on the direct route to the gold fieldsy
of the Pacific.    The adventurer would understand' ]
that if he failed on the east side of the mountainsiil
he would find on the west the opportunities hew
asked for."
| The last Red River mail confirms the rumours
of 1861 in respect to the discovery of gold on the,
Saskatchewan. The 'colour' has been found at
Carlton House, near the forks of the river—a locality about half-way from Selkirk to the mountains*
The Nor'- Wester, the newspaper at Fort Garry, is
filled with articles exhibiting the rising excitement
among the mercurial people of the settlement I
anticipate that the voyageurs of the north-west, with
oxen, horses, and carts, will be unavailable to the
Hudson's Bay Company next summer.   A popukea "'
tion of 4000 from Selkirk alone will be speedily
transferred to the valleys of the Rocky Mountains,
ffioroughly exploring, under the guidance of Australian and Californian miners, the resources of the
Saskatchewan. Their places will be filled tenfold
by emigrants from England and Canada, especially
if a Colonial Government is established at the present session of Parliament over Central British
America. In any event, I cannot see how the
Hudson Bay Company can rely on their present
system of transportation during the summer of
1862. A Mackinaw boat, holding five tons, requires five men — usually half-breed voyageurs.
These cannot be obtained, if there is a stampede to
the diggings, among that roving and unreliable class.
" There are now two steamers on the Red River
of the north. With our present news, there will
be a necessity in July for a propeller through Lake
Winnipeg and a river steamer on the Saskatchewan.
These furnished, a water communication from
Georgetown, in Minnesota, would transport an
emigrant to the new Eldorado in the Rocky
Mountains, from which the Frazer flows to the Pacific, the Peace River to the Arctic Ocean, and the
Saskatchewan to the Hudson Bay."
I The conception of an Inter-Oceanic Railway "
( able correspondent of the Times), "commencing at Halifax, and, after passing, in its entire
length of 3200 miles, through British territory, terminating at the new Liverpool, which, we may confidently hope, will, in a few years, rise up on the
,    H 2
nil 100
southern shore of Vancouver Island, is one the
magnitude and importance of which cannot be overestimated. As compared with the route to British
Columbia vid Panama, the Inter-Oceanic line would
effect a saving of twenty-two days, while the position
of Vancouver Island, as contrasted with Panama, in
relation to China and Australia, is also very significant.
Panama to Canton, about  10,000 miles
Vancouver Island to Canton .    .    .    . 9,000
Panama to Sydney  8,200
Vancouver Island to Sydney .... 7,200
"This proximity to Australia," continues the
writer," is especially worthy of note at a time
when the transmission of the mails across the
Pacific is again being prominently advocated. It
will be apparent from the aforegiven distances, that
by transmitting the Australian mails from England
to the Pacific across British North America vid
Vancouver Island, instead of vid Panama, a saving
of five days is effected between England and the
Pacific, and of 1000 miles, or say five days more, in
the passage across that ocean—ten days saved in all.
" The advantages to Great Britain, which would
accrue consequent upon the entire service being
performed through British territory are beyond
all calculation. The construction of the railway
would not merely open up to civilization a large
territory in British North America hitherto almost
unexplored, but it would open up to the cultivators!
of the soil in that territory and in Canada a means
of transit to all the markets of the Pacific, and an .
open passage to the China seas and to our possessions in the East Indies. In every aspect, whether
viewed politically, socially, or commercially, the
establishment of the proposed railway would give
a progressive impulse to the affairs of the world,
which, in its results, wordd eclipse anything which
has been witnessed even amid the extraordinary development of the present century. That the railway
will infallibly be made is as certain as that now is
the time to undertake it. One does not require to
be a prophet to predict that when the resources of
British Columbia are fully opened up, and a communication established between the Atlantic and
the Pacific, there will be enough traffic for a dozen
steamers as large as the Great Eastern on both
oceans. The British empire has now the opportunity of securing that position which it has hitherto
occupied without dispute as the greatest commer-
. cial nation in the world."
In reference to the delays which the scheme has
experienced in its progress towards completion, the
Canadian News of the 20th March, 1862, observes:—
" The papers received by the last mail from Bri-
btish North America state that the return of the
Hon. Mr. Van Koughnet to Canada without the
definite reply of the Imperial Government to the
proposals of the several provinces in regard to the
Inter-colonial Railway, has been made the occasion
by several of the journals in each of the provinces
to charge their  recently returned delegates with
•^failure in their mission. Never was a charge so
utterly groundless.    We are in a position to state 102
in the most positive terms that, so far from this
Government having given a refusal, they are now engaged in discussing the whole merits of the question.
" The delay has arisen because it was suggested
that it would be well in the first place to satisfy
the Lords of the Treasury in regard to the feeling
of this country with reference to the proposed rait||
way. Memorials have accordingly been sent in
from Liverpool, Manchester, Bristol, Chester,
Gloucester, Sheffield, Leith, Glasgow, Edinburgh,
Dublin, Belfast, &c, all couched in the strongest.
^possible language as to the absolute necessity, in an
Imperial point of view, of the Halifax and Quebec
Railway. These documents are now receiving at
*the hands <of the Executive that consideration to
which they are so well entitled ; and we understand
that, with the view to the discussion of the whole
question in Parliament, the production of these
papers will be moved for in the House. In the
meantime, our provincial contemporaries would do
well to await the results of the forthcoming action
of the Imperial Legislature, before attributing
failure to the recent mission with which the Hon.
Messrs. Van Koughnet, Howe, and Tilley were
"Charged, and especially as their recent statements
are very likely to prove them false prophets."
Another new undertaking, projected in connexion
<*writh the same colony,* is the " British Columbia
Overland Transit Company (limited)."   The capital
* It is proper to draw attention to the accompanying letter
on the subject of this enterprise, which was inserted in the
Daily News of A-pril 10,1862:— THE OVERLAND TRANSIT COMPANY.
is to be  5OO,O00Z.,  with  power  to increase to
1,000,000?., in 101.  shares.     The promoters have
organized an overland route from Canada, passing
Nfoect through British territory.    Surveyors have
■graced a direct road, which, with a perfect organization of land-transport, is   stated  to   be at  once
-available.    The company intends to form a land-
"transport train adapted both for  passengers and
goods, a large immigrant traffic being anticipated.
^Enterprise in this direction having been encouraged
*fey the legislatures both of Canada   and British
Columbia, applications have been made direct to
them for local charters, with a view to secure to the
company exclusive privileges.    The hope is held
38Mi!t of accomplishing the distance between Europe
"the west-end joint-stock bank  (limited), and the
british columbia overland transit company (limited).
" To the Editor of the Daily■"Sews.
" SlK,—Admitted, on the one hand, that gentlemen of po-
sition and property have a right to exert their influence and
invest their money in as many joint-stock companies as they
j>lease, I think it will be conceded, on the other hand, that
the public should know how or where any particular circle of
such capitalists may be found in continuous co-operation in
different enterprises.
" I have before me copies of the prospectuses of the two
companies whose titles introduce this letter. The board of
"the first-mentioned consists of eleven directors, of the second,
fifteen; and I observe that the former contributes ten niem-
•bers to the directory of the latter. The chairman, the solicitors, and the auditor stand alike for both companies.
"Would it not be more discreet, on the part of those gentlemen, if they were to distribute good dividends on No. 1,
before they immerse themselves in No. 2 ?—I am, &c,
" Cautious."
H 104
and British Columbia in about twenty-five days.
Attached to the undertaking is a scheme for caixy-
ing on banking business in British Columbia. It
is more particularly proposed to deal in bullion and
gold dust, upon the plan pursued by the transit
companies in British Columbia.
A correspondent of the Canadian News, under
date of the 23rd February, 1862, says :—
" The movement towards the gold fields of Biitish
Columbia which is almost depopulating some parts
of California, and is raging with some intensity in
the States, has reached some parts of Canada too,
and several hundred adventurous spirits are going
to follow the few who have already left in search of
fortunes on the Pacific coast. The papers of the
Atlantic provinces are rather discountenancing this
—they fear the exodus of even a few, and they are
pointing to the rich new gold fields of Novia Scotia
as a preferable quarter for people to try their luck.
I hardly know which course to take. I hope a
large number of immigrants will go to both. What
a future for this northern portion of the continent
do not these new gold discoveries open up ! The.
Nova Scotia coal mines are the best places on the.
Atlantic coast of America for procuring coal—nay,
I think the only place, and the supplies there are
inexhaustible. Vancouver Island is the only spot
where coal is to be found on the Pacific. Thus,
facilities for steam-boat and railway travel are provided at either end of the great trans-continental
route. The Harbour of Halifax on the one side,
and Victoria on the other are the best in all America. NORTH-WEST TRANSPORTATION COMPANY.     105
—both always free from ice, well protected, and
capacious.    The valley of the St. Lawrence extends
a thousand miles and more between these extreme
points.    The valley of the Saskatchewan runs a
thousand  miles further—both  of these being in
British territory, in the direction of travel between
the oceans, and so level as to be almost natural beds
for railroads.    Ere many years, I see that railway
^cains must run on British ground from one side of
*this new world to the other, carrying not only the
sgold of California  and Columbia   towards  Great
Britslin, but also the teas and silks of China and
Japan and the rich pi'oductions of our Indian empire,
returning with finer manufactures of English anvils
and looms for the supply of the populations of two
continents.     It is a thousand   pities the British
people will not open their eyes to the advantages
of the International Railroad in bringing this future
soon about; it alone is needed to half accomplish
at, and to link Halifax with Sarnia, Goderich, and
Collingwood on Lake Huron and its great Georgian
Bay.    It is much to be regretted, too, that the
cgrand ideas of Mr. W. M. Dawson, the projector of
sfche North-West Transportation Company (chartered,
but not yet organised), have not yet been carried
sout.    His plans, which excited much attention a
few years ago, comprised, you will remember, the
establishment of a steam line between Collingwood
and Fort William (Lake Superior), and the placing
bf half-a-dozen small river steamers on the chain of
rivers and lakes which run from that to the foot of
the Rocky Mountains, with only a few easily sur- ill
mounted portages. It would not have taken more
than $100,000 to start this enterprise, and had it
been in operation now, it would have repaid its
proprietors tenfold in a few seasons, for it would
have been patronized by all who are going to the
Cariboo or to Peele River. Perhaps Mr. Dawson's
next endeavour will be more successful, and the
establishment in London of the British American
Association, of which we have heard with the
deepest interest, will enable such plans as his the
better to be laid before the British public."
On the 13th of September, 1858, a letter appealed in the Times from a writer desirous of showing the practicability of speedily establishing, and
at a very moderate cost, a line of electric telegraph
from Canada to the western sea-board, which shall
prove the forerunner of the Great Inter-Oceanic
Railway, and the means, in part, of opening up ;
the vast and yet unoccupied territory east of the
Rocky Mountains.
The route may shortly be described as follows :—
Port William to Eed Eiver—say .... 500
Red River to Pairford (or Lake Winnipeg)—
say         130
Pairford to Cumberland station—say      .    .170
Cumberland to Nepowewin  200
Nepowewin by the  N.   Saskatchewan   or
Battle River to the Punchbowl Pass, on
the Rocky Mountains         600—1100
" The weight and cost of the staves for the whole
line would be, approximately :— telegraph routes. 107
Port William to Assestxboia.
Weight, 272 tons.
Cost of materials and of conveyance from England
by the route of Lake Superior to Port William £9,500
1 Inland conveyance 1,500
Assiniboia to Rocky Mountains.
Weight, 298 tons.
Cost of materials and of conveyance from England
by way of Hudson's Bay to Fort York     .    . .£11,000
Inland conveyance 3,000
I The only remaining item of cost to be considered is that of labour. The amount of skilled
labour to be performed in the erection of a line of
telegraph is so limited that a trained workman
would complete his portion of the work at the rate
of from five to ten miles of line per week. The
labour, for the execution of which no previous
training is required, is simply that of cutting wood
suitable for telegraph posts along the route, and
setting these posts in the ground at intervals of fifty
or sixty yards. Possibly for some hundreds of
miles of the whole distance no pole-setting whatever would be required, the living trees themselves
(of course with proper insulators) affording every
convenience for the due support and protection of
the electric wire. A sum of 51. per mile would, no
doubt, be a liberal allowance to cover this charge.
" The figures would therefore stand thus :—
Materials and shipment ..... £20,500
Inland conveyance 4,500
Labour 8,000
He adds : " Between Fort William and the Ca-
"li 10S
nadian capital such an extension as might hereafter
seem desirable could readily be established, either by
the route of Lake Superior or of the River Ottawa;
but the unbroken Lake communication which now
exists would supply in a measure the hiatus, until
the completion of the remaining section should bind
together with a link of iron the mother country
and her colonies in the Pacific*
Gold had been discovered in Queen Charlotte's
Islands in 1852, but only in small quantities; and
p has been long well understood that this precious
metal existed not only on Frazer River, but
throughout the Central Cascade Range in this di-
rection. As matter of actual discovery, Captain 1
McClelland, in 1853, while surveying the military
road from Fort Walla Walla, on the Columbia
River, to Fort Steilacoom, on Puget Sound, through
the Nachess Pass, found gold in considerable quantities, his men making two dollars a day, sometimes, with a pan. The discovery, whenever first
made, or wherever, was not reported to the Home
Government until 1856, when Mr. Douglas, Governor of the new colony, addressed a despatch to
the Colonial Secretary, in which he stated that a
discovery of much importance had been made known
to him by Mr. Angus M'Donald, clerk in charged
of Fort Coivile.
Mr. M'Donald reported that gold had been found
in considerable quantities within the British territory on the Upper Columbia, and that he was
moreover of opinion that valuable deposits of gold
would be found in many other parts of that country. "
The communication was not very enthusiastically
received, and in December, 1857, the Governor
wrote to the Colonial Government a letter, in which
he says:—
"The reputed wealth of the Couteau Mines is
causing much excitement among the population of
the United States territories of Washington and
Oregon, and I have no doubt that a great number
of people from those territories will be attracted
thither with the return of the fine weather in
" When mining becomes a remunerative employment, and there is a proof of the extent and productiveness of the gold deposits, I would propose
that the licence fee be gradually increased, in
such a manner, however, as not to be higher
than the persons engaged in mining can readily
On the 6th April, 1858, Douglas informed the
Colonial Secretary that the search for gold and
prospecting of the country had, up to the last dates
from the interior, been carried on by the native Indian population, who were extremely jealous of the
whites, and strongly opposed to their digging the
Soil for gold.
The shipments of gold from Victoria to San
Francisco by the agencies, amounted in 1858 to
$337,765, in 1859 to $1,211,309; in I860 to
$1,303,332, and in 1861 to $1,636,870.
In 1860 the population, revenue, and expenditure
of British Columbia and Vancouver Island were as
.. <0p':
Males. Females. Total.
British Columbia .
Vancouver Island
British Columbia
Vancouver Island
British Columbia
Vancouver Island
5,000, official estimate, 1860.
do. do.
.    £53,286
..       14,749
.    £47,175
The Canadian News of the 8th May, 1861, publishes the subjoined figures :—
" The receipts at the Custom-house (of Victoria)'!
for the week ending March 2, 1861, were—Duties,
710?. 12s. 7d.; harbour dues, 71. 7s. 2d.; head money,
161. 4s. 4c?.; tonnage dues, 601. 19s.; warehouse fees,
11. 4s.; total revenue, 796?. 6s. 6d.   The customs re--
ceipts for January and February, 1860, were 3890?.
5s. 10d.; for the same months in 1861, 4069?. 3s. 4c?.;
increase in favour of 1861, 178?. 17s. 6d.    A. slight-
increase has also taken place in the number of persons who paid head money.    In 1860, during Janu-
ary and February, there were 290; and in 1861,
during the same period, 316.  Gain in 1861, 26."
The largest hotel in Victoria is in Langley-stree^jl
and is a commodious and well-finished structure!!
It was erected for Mr. Mitchell, the owner of the '
ground, and was leased, in 1861, for a term of years^
to Mr. Bull, the  proprietor of the  late British-
American Hotel on Vates-street.    It is called, we
believe, the Columbia  House,   or the  Columbia
A quite recent letter from Victoria, Columbia, RICHNESS  OF  THE  MINES
gives a flourishing account of the mineral wealth of
Vancouver Island :—
" I have told you before of the almost fabulous
richness of the mines of British Columbia; recent
accounts place this beyond a. doubt. Many men are
making $100 per day, and not a few have picked up
100 ounces in the same space of time. Numbers
who left Victoria penniless are now worth from
$1000 to $10,000, the result of one summer's
labour. Those who had not luck enough to get
good claims of their own, obtained plenty of employment at from $10 to $20 per day. Want is
unknown, provisions are plentiful, and. hardships are
among the things of the past. According to all
accounts, the gold must have been taken out by
spadefuls. Think of $100 to the pan—not a fancy,
but a reality. Miners think that richer diggings
are yet'to be found, and that the true seat of the
gold is not yet discovered. All the metal is coarse
and in small nuggets—say from ten to twenty
dollar pieces. The largest lump yet found weighs:
7 lb.; and this, strange to say, was found on Thompson's River—old and neglected ground. Miners are
now coming down in large numbers, each with his
little sack of gold ; but the majority of those with
' piles' proceed to San Francisco—a loss at present
unavoidable from the want of mint and the scarcity
of the circulating medium. The Otter, within, the
last fortnight, has brought down not less than
$500,000, and there is plenty more to come.
Wells, Fargo, and Co. alone will have shipped this
year not less than a million and a half dollars." if
Mr. A. G. Dallas, to whom the letter was addressed, says:—
"From   my   own   personal   knowledge   of the
country, I believe that British Columbia will sur- j
pass both Australia and California in the richness of
its gold fields.    At present the labourers are few,,,
and the gold does not figure in the exports from
Victoria,  but goes to  swell those of  California. 3
Provisions are as plentiful as gold, and cheaper than
in any other country I know.   The finest potatoes I;
ever saw were selling last winter in Victoria at 20 -
cents, or 10 J. per 100 lb.    Flour and other necesrf
saries were equally cheap and abundant.   GroceriesJ
also were as cheap as in England, there being no
duties.    The only expensive articles are manufacS
tured goods, the produce of labour.    For the pos-1
sessor of the latter, in the shape of a stout hear,t»
and strong arms, both male and female, there is no
better country in the world, with its fine climatejj
and every other good gift of Providence, including^
seas and rivers abounding with fish, forests, rich
farming lands at 4s. 2d. per acre, corn fields, and ;
minerals.    In the event of war, these fine colonies^
at all times difficult of access to the poor man, can.
only be reached or even communicated with either
by the circuitous route round Cape Horn or vi&±
China.    To American  steamers from Panama to
Victoria we are at present indebted for the transmission of letters or passengers.    What is wanted
is a line of English steamers from Panama to Vi^jl
toria.    This cannot, in the first instance, be accomplished without   the  aid  of the mother-country. CARIBOO.
This aid, granted but for a short period, would, I am
satisfied, so add to the population and so develope
the resources of Vancouver Island and British Columbia, that in a few years they would be able to
carry on for themselves what they now solicit the
mother-country to establish."
The Victoria Colonist, in speculating upon the
next season's emigration, says :—
" Cariboo—fabulously rich in gold—will be the
centre of attraction. Between that and Victoria
will be the main line of trade, travel, and industry.
The Cariboo country proper contains no less than
an area of 6400 square miles. It is ample enough
to employ 50,000 miners of itself. But it is not at
all probable—attractive as it is—that our other
gold fields will be overlooked, if enjoying exclusively the immigration. Stickeen River, where
good wages can be made—where provisions can
be boated in—where mining is nearly as rich as
at Cariboo—Stickeen will draw off its adventurers ; that is certain. Then there is Peace River,
between Stickeen and Cariboo. It is rich; the
gold fields extensive, and more accessible than
Cariboo. Peace River will take its quota of miners.
Then there is North River—a branch of the Thompson—between Lake Kamloops and Cariboo. It
offers another field for miners. It is nearer and
more accessible, and probably equally as rich as
Cariboo. Its tributaries and bars will hardly escape
the delving miner.
" Still farther east is Columbia River—the north-
r 114
ern branch of that extensive artery. By crossing
over from North River or the head of Shuswap
Lake, the head waters of the British portion of Columbia River is struck. Its bars are auriferous;
pay $25 a day; and on the rich creeks which are
tributary, are diggings as rich as Cariboo. Explorers ascended it last year. Gold miners will go
there too. Rock Creek and Similkameen will also
attract more or less; whilst numerous other loca-
lities, either known or unknown, will share out the
" We may thus see the wide field for immigration
which our country offers—a gold field extending
from the 49th to the 57th degree of north latitude;
and from 116° west longitude to 132°—eight de-
grees of latitude by sixteen degrees of longitude.
Whichever route miners take—to whatever gold"
fields the miners go—it will require a great deal of
labour to supply them. Towards Cariboo, in all
probability, the majority of the rush will go. No
question then exists but that the attention of Government should be early turned in that direction.
But along the same road, on Thompson and Nicolas
Rivers, at least five thousand farmers may settle
down this year—insured unequalled prices for their
crops, Hay, cereals, vegetables, are sure to find a
good market."
Another local paper, under date of the 14th
January, 1862, gives us the following news from
'" Mr. Levi, of Levi and Boas, New Westminster, FREIGHTAGE.
Bas furnished some additional and interesting items
of intelligence from Cariboo. There are about
75,000 pounds of flour at the Forks of Quesnelle,
and 125,000 pounds of other goods. At Beaver
Lake there are 25,000 pounds of every description
of merchandize, most of which will be taken to the
Forks, before the spring immigration arrives, on the
backs of Indians. The only article of which there
was a scarcity up to December 1st, was candles,
which were selling at $2 50 a pound ! Think of
paying $50 for a 20-pound box of greasy illuminators ! The Indians, for packing 100 pounds from
the Forks of Quesnelle to Antler Creek, receive
$40 a trip, which generally, owing to the deep
snow, consumes the best part of a week. From
Beaver Lake to the Forks, $10 are paid for each 100
pounds packed. Four or five white men were making
hand-sleds at the latter place, on which they proposed freighting goods to Antler; and McCarty (a
well-known packer) was preparing dog-sleds at Port
Alexandria to run between the Fords and Antler,
with freight at 30 cents per pound. Several parties
were engaged in sawing lumber on the banks of
Quesnelle, and they were selling it at $125 per 1000
feet; the demand was very light. Flour at the
Forks was worth $72 dollars per barrel; beans, 45
cents per pound; bacon, 68 cents; best india-rubber
boots, $16; axes, $6; long-handled shovels, $5;
picks, $6. Just before our informant started to
come down, the discovery of a rich silver mine, between Beaver Lake and Alexandria, was announced.
"1-1 116
The weather was intensely cold, and the snow three
feet deep."
Under date of July 16,1861, the Governor writes
to the Colonial Secretary :—
"The latest accounts from Cariboo confirm the
former reports of its vast auriferous wealth. About
1500 men are supposed to be congregated in those
mines, and the number is continually augmented by
the arrival of fresh bodies of miners. It will be a
work of difficulty to keep them supplied with food,
a service which now gives employment to about
1200 transport horses and mules ; and I am in
hopes that tbe large profits made in that business
will lead to its extension.
." To facilitate the transport to those mines I
authorized a grant of 400?. to improve the river
trail from Cayoosh to Williams' Lake ; and 400?. to
open a trail from Quesnelle to Cariboo Lake, the
charge, in both cases, to be defrayed out of the
district revenues.
" The remoteness of the Cariboo mines, and the
large assemblage of people there, have rendered it
necessary to establish a gold escort for the conveyance of treasure from Quesnelle to New Westminster;
and more especially with the view of strengthening
the hands of the magistrates in those distant
localities by the periodical exhibition of a small
military force. This will put the colony to expense*,
but I conceive it is an indispensable precaution that
may prevent much future evil."
mmm 117
Extracts from Recent Official Despatches—Further Extracts
from the Local and Canadian Press and from Correspondence
—Extracts from the Times Letter of March 25, 1862—Re-
'  marks on the Letter—The Bishop of Columbia's Journal.
We think that the following letter is of sufficient
interest to be given at length :—
I Copy of Despatch from Governor Douglas, C.B.,
to his Grace the Duke of Newcastle, K.G. '
"Victoria, Vancouver Island, September 16, 1861.
"(Received November 2, 1861.)
" My Lord Duke,
" I have much satisfaction in reporting to your
Grace that the Colony of British Columbia continues in a tranquil and progressive state.
" The Gold Commissioners, in their last monthly
reports, represent the continued exodus of the
mining population from their respective districts
•towards the ' Cariboo' country; in speaking of
which I have adopted the popular and more convenient orthography of the word, though properly
it should be written ' Cariboeuf,' or rein-deer, the
country having been so named from its being a
favourite haunt of that species of the deer kind.
" The most extraordinary accounts of the wealth
of that gold field are received by every succeeding
steamer from British Columbia; and those accounts
are confirmed by letters from the merchants aud
traders of the district, and by fortunate adventurers
who have realized, by a few weeks' labour, their
thousands of dollars. It would in fact appear that
"Cariboo is at least equal, in point of auriferous
wealth, to the best parts of California; and I
believe the gold deposits of British Columbia will
be found to be distributed oter far more extensivel
" Some idea may be formed of the large sums!
realized, from the fact that 195 ounces of gold were
taken in one day out of a single mining claim; while
ordinary claims yield as much as forty or fifty
dollars a-day to the man : but perhaps the most^
telling circumstance is the high price of labour,
which has attained to the extraordinary sum of ten
dollars a-day; and any number of men may find
employment at that rate of pay.
The Cariboo gold district was discovered by a
fine athletic young man of the name of McDonnell,
a native of the island of Cape Breton, of mixed
French and Scotch descent, combining in his personal appearance and character the courage, activity,
and remarkable powers of endurance of both races.
His health has suffered from three years' constant
exposure and privation, which induced Mm tore-
pair, with his well-earned wealth, to this colony for
medical assistance. MINING  AT  CARIBOO.
" His verbal report to me is interesting, and conveys the idea of an almost exhaustless gold field,
extending through the quartz and slate formations,
an a northerly direction from Cariboo Lake.
" The following well-attested instances of successful mining at Cariboo may prove interesting, and
will probably convey to Her Majesty's Government
-a more precise idea of the value and real character
of this gold field than any mere generalizations, and
Iwith that object in view, I will lay the details, as
received from the persons themselves, before your
" John McArthur and Thomas Phillips arrived
here from Cariboo on the 17th of August last, with
nine thousand ($9000) dollars' worth of gold dust
in their possession, being the fruits of three months'
feesidenee at the mines. They arrived there on the
jskst day of May, and left again on the 1st day of
rA^ugust, having previously sold their mining claim
at a high price to other persons. Their last earnings for one day amounted to five hundred and
twenty-five dollars (^525); and- no single day's
work yielded less than twenty-five dollars ($25).
Both those persons have been mining in California,
and are acquainted with its resources, yet they give
it as their opinion that Cariboo, as a 'generally
paying' country, surpasses the best days of California.
"Mr. Patterson and brother arrived at New
Westminster by the steamer of the 14th instant,
with ten thousand dollars' worth of gold dust, the
I 120
produce of five weeks' work at Cariboo.    I personally inspected  their treasure, of which they are
justly proud, being the well-earned reward of their
skill and enterprise.    Mr. Patterson's mining claim
was on the Lowhee,|atributary of Swift River, and
about sixteen miles distant from Antler Creek.  The
ground was composed of gravel and many quarta
boulders, and the depth to the bed-rock was from
four to six feet, beyond which he did not attempt
to penetrate, though the richest deposit of gold was
immediately over the bed-rock.    The largest day's^}
return from the claim was seventv-three ounces of
gold, worth about twelve hundred dollars ($1200);
on another occasion he received seventy ounces ofo
the close of a day's work.    The gold is in roughs
jagged pieces, the largest found by Mr. Patterson
was over six ounces; but on the next claim to his,
a piece of ten ounces was picked up by the lucky
proprietor.    Mr. Patterson .sold his mining claim
before his departure from Cariboo, and is now re--;
turning to his native country, the United States,
with the wealth he has so rapidly acquired in
British Columbia, this being one of the evils to-
which the colony is exposed through the want of.
a fixed population.
"I will not multiply these details, having saicLj
enough to show your Grace the opinion entertained
by the public of the newly-discovered gold fields,
and of the probable influx of population from California and other countries which may be attracted^
by those discoveries.   I need not assure your Grace > SUPPLIES.
that every precaution will, in that event, be taken
to maintain the peace, order, and good government
of the country, and to increase its permanent population : but it is impossible to repress a feeling of
profound regret that so few of Her Majesty's British
subjects have yet participated in the rich harvests
leaped in British Columbia, though there is certainly
no country in the world that offers greater inducements to the labouring classes, or for the employment of capital.    The settler enjoys the peculiar
advantage in British Columbia of an  unfettered
choice of the public domain; and may, without
expense or official delay,   select any part of the
colony he pleases, as his future home ; the ultimate
price of land being in no case over four shillings
and twopence an acre,   payable   by instalments,
spread over several years.    In fact, the system of
no country can offer greater inducements to the
rsettler and miner than the land regulations and
mining laws of British Columbia.
" The miners at Cariboo have, I am glad to inform
your Grace, suffered no privation whatever from
the want of food. Besides the large importations of
bread-stuffs and salt meat packed in from Lillooet
and Lytton, large droves of cattle have been sent
to Antler Creek, where the native grasses are nutritious and abundant; and fresh beef is now selling
by retail at Is. 8d. a pound. A mining town of
some note has sprung into existence at Antler's
Creek, and supplies of all kinds can be readily
"The traveller who is prepared to encounter famine
in its gauntest forms on his arrival at Cariboo, is
not a little astonished to find himself in the midst
of luxury, sitting down every morning to fresh milk
and eggs for breakfast, and to as good a dinner as
can be seen in Victoria.
" The great commercial thoroughfares, leading
into the interior of the country, from Hope, Yale,
and Douglas, are in rapid progress, and now exercise 1
a most beneficial effect on the internal commerce of
the colony.    I have many other productive public
works, indispensable for the development of the
colony, in view,  but  I  cannot  undertake   their 3
execution until I am made acquainted with your I
Grace's decision about the proposed loan of money
for British Columbia.
'■$$$ " I have, &c.
"(Signed) James Douglas.
" His Grace the Duke of Newcastle, K.G.
&C. s&C. <fcc."
Again, under date of October 24, 1861, the Governor says:—
"Accounts from Cariboo are more than ever
satisfactory ; and the numbers of returning miners
with their rapidly acquired stores of gold, and the
extraordinary fact, unusual, I believe, in gold
countries, that they have been all eminently successful, offer the strongest confirmation of the almost
fabulous wealth of that gold-field. I have not,
indeed, up to the present time, met with a single 1
miners' GAINS. 123
unfortunate miner from that quarter. Of those
whom I had occasion to interrogate during my
•recent visit to British Columbia, I ascertained that
none who held mining claims had less than 2000,
and that others had cleared as much as $10,000
iduring their summer's sojourn at the mines. It
may therefore be fairly assumed that their indi-
vidual?earnings range at some point between those
figures. I should, however, apprize your Grace
•that the large_strikes of the season, such as Jourdan
and Abbott claim on Lowhee Creek, and Ned
Campbell's claim on Lightning Creek, the latter said
to have produced 900 ounces of gold in one day,
'are not included in this category, as I have had no
opportunity of seeing the owners of these claims,
who are still in the upper country; but I will
inquire into and report upon these special cases
Our readers will probably not object to have a
few extracts from Mr. Douglas's travelling notebook for 1861 :—
" Laurent Bijou, a native of France, left Cariboo
h©n the 1st day of August. He resided about one
month at the mines, and has acquired $4500
worth of gold dust;—says he has not. been so fortunate as many others, who are making as much as
$1000 a day. He has mined in California, but
never saw a gold field so rich as Cariboo."
% Joseph Paterson and brother, natives of Maine,
United States of America, have been mining at
Keithley's Creek, and left it about the 10th of Sep-
«B 124
tember. They have cleared the sum of $6000
between them, or $3000 each, in gold dust,
which they carry about with them on their persons. They report that as a general thing the
miners are making from two to three ounces a day.
They are well acquainted with Jourdan and Abbott's
claim, and have often seen them weighing out, at
the close of their day's work; the yield on one
occasion was within a few grains of 195 ounces, |
the number of working hands being at the time
four in all. That was their largest day's return;
but 80, 90, and 100 ounces a day were ordinary
" Richard Willoughby, a native of England, discovered a mining claim on Lowhee Creek, and began I
to work it on the 27 th of July last; he continued-
mining with from four to seven hired men till the
8th of September, when he sold the claim to an^-j
other person, and returned safely to Yale, where heH
now resides, with the sum of 12,000 dollars in golcf-
dust.    His largest day's return was 84 ounces, and
the entire amount of gold taken, during his tenure,
from the claim, amounted to 3037 ounces, valued
at 48,600 dollars, and his own share to the sum of
12,000 dollars.    His last week's work netted 203&'
dollars, and for two weeks previously he cleared
1000 dollars a week for each working hand on the
claim; and what is extraordinary is the fact that]
all this wealth was found immediately at or within'
four feet of the surface, the extreme of Mr. Wil-r
loughby's sinkings.    At that depth he encountered!
the bed rock, composed of soft blue slate, yielding1
readily to the pick. He also mentions the discovery
of a highly auriferous quartz reef; and he gave me
a specimen of galena, containing, as per assay, 67
per cent, of lead, and 37 ounces of silver to the ton.
He also mentioned several rich veins of silver ore
which he saw at Cariboo; but the inferior metals
attract scarcely any attention in countries where
gold is easily acquired."
j " Mr. Hodge, an American settled near Yale,
held a mining claim on Lowhee Creek for about six
weeks, and lately returned to Yale with a sum exceeding $2100. His reports corroborate and confirm in all respects the statements of Richard
" Thomas Brown, an American citizen, claims the
honour of having discovered and taken up the first
mining claim on Williams' Creek, just one claim
below the Jourdan and Abbott claim. Mr. Brown
has been fortunate, and has a heavy pouch of gold,
but I did not ascertain its money value. He says
that' Ned Campbell,' a friend of his, with a company of ten other miners, selected and recorded
a claim on a newly discovered stream, called Lightning Creek, a tributary of Swift River, which yielded
about two ounces of gold to the panful of earth;
and that a report had reached Quesnelle previous
to his departure, that the company, almost as soon
as they began to work, had realized 1100 ounces in
one day; and he places the greatest confidence in
that report. Mr. Brown's statements on all other
points respecting Cariboo corroborate the statements of Mr. Willoughby." 126
We do not know that we can render a better
service to our readers, who desire practical and
trustworthy information, than by giving a few more
extracts from the local press. In reference to the
vital question of prices, the Victoria (V. I.) Colonist
of the 21st January last, says :—
| Little business worth anything has been transacted here for three weeks past.    Goods of every
description are  held at   very   high   figures,   but
the  sales made are  extremely light.    The  New
Westminster market is reported bare of flour, potas^
toes, and beef.    Here there is an abundant supply
of flour to meet the present very limited demand,.
at $8 50 and $9 for extra brands, and $7 50 to $8
for superfine.    Three thousand barrels of California
mills are on the way to this market.    New bean&f
are in good supply at 6 and 7 cents per pound.   Potatoes meet with a steady sale at 1^ cents by whole*
sale, and 21 and 3 cents retail.    Sugar of every1
grade is high, and tea and coffee are away up in thef;
clouds,  on account  of the  War  Tariff on  both
articles.    A heavy sale of Sandwich Island sugar
took place yesterday on private terms.    Adamantine candles are wholesaled at 30 cents per pound,
and the Hudson Bay Company hold Oregon bacon
at 17 and 18 cents.    There is stored in town a
small quantity of British Columbia freight awaiting
transit, and we learn that the schooner Explore*^
will start for Frazer River to-day with freight and
Annexed is a " List of Goods shipped from Salt GOODS.
Francisco to Victoria (V. I.) and British Columbia
in 1859."
Absinthe, cs	
Agricultural implements,
72   I
Alcohol, bbls.
.    . 136
.    .    56
.    .    .225
.    . 447
.    .    .554
Barley, bags   .
.   . 16,937
Beans, bags   .    .
. 11,065
.    .    99
.    .    21
Beer, csks.      .    ,
.    . 858
do.   kegs
.    .    11
.    . 101
Bitters, cs.
.    . 122
Boots and shoes,
pkgs. 1321
Buckwheat, bags
.   .     3
Butter, firkins
.     1028
Building material
Lumber, feet  .
do.     pes.
.    . 131
Blinds, bdl.
.    .      1
Doors, bdls. an
d no. . 748
Sash, bdls. anc
no.   . 369
Pickets, bdL
.    .    .      1
Bran, bags
.     2473
Brandy, hhds.
.    .    .    13
do.    ^ pipes
.   .      3
do.    £ pipes
.   .    27
do.   octaves
.   . 442
do.    cs.
.    .    45
.    . 477
.   . 767
Camphene, cs.
.   . 857
Candles, bxs. .
Cement, bbls.
.    . 148
.    .  139
do.  cs.  .    .    .
. 491
Cigars, cs.      .    .
. 157
.    .      4
.    .      2
.    98
Corn meal, puns.
.    .      4
do.       bbls. .
.    .    40
do.       sks.  .
. 381
Coffee, bags   .   .
. 544
. 360
Cordage, coils.    .
. 251
do.      pkgs.   .
.    .    95
.    95
do.     pkgs.
. 118
China goods, pks.
Chocolate, cs.
.    .   26
Clothing, pkgs.   .
. 666
.      3
Crockery, csks.   .
.      9
do.       pkgs. .
.    35
Drugs, pkgs. .    .
. 904
Dry goods, pkgs.
Fancy goods, pkgs.
.      4
Fire crackers, bxs.
.    . 450
Fish, drums   .    .
.    19
dc.    bbls.
.    .      6
. 140
.    28
I mn
Flour, bbls.    .    .    .
do.    hf. sks.    .    .
do.    qr. sks.    .    . 3
Fruit,  green and dried
. 145
do.    bxs.   do.
. 481
do.    pkgs. do.
.    64
Furniture, pks.   .    .
Gin, pipes and puns.
.    57
Glassware, pkgs.
Groceries, pkgs. .    .
Gunnies, bdls.     .    .
do.      bales   .    .
Hams, casks  .
Hardware, pkgs.
Hay, bales     ...
Hollow-ware, pkgs..    .
do.         pes.    .    ,
Hops, cs. and bales .
Iron pipe, ipes.    .    .    .
Leather, rolls.    .    .
Lead, white, kegs   .
Liquors, unspecified, oc-
do.         do.      bbls.
do.         do.      kegs.
do.         do.      cs.   .
do.         do.      pkgs
Maecaa&ni, bxs. . . .132
Machinery, pes. andpkgs. 393
Malt, sks 386
Matches, cs 103
Matting, rolls ... 62
Merchandise, pkgs. . 1017
Metals, bars   .... 600
do. cs. and bdls. . 409
Molasses    and    syrups,
bbls 15
do.       kegs   .    .     1252
do.       cs.      ... 153
Nails, kegs    .... 751
Nuts, pkgs 37
Oats, bags. . . . 1416
Oakum, bales.    . 96
Oars, no 442
do.   pkgs 38
On, bbls 65
do. cs 176
do. pkgs 81
Paints, pkgs 937
Paper, pkgs 97
Pianos, no 7
Pickles, preserves, &c. 1484
do.      kegs .... 350
do.      pkgs....    29
Pipes, cs 95
Pitch, bbls 3S
Plaster, bbls 90
Pork, bbls 316
Potatoes, bags . . . 394
Powder, kegs....    34
do. bxs. ... 23
Printing materials, pkgs. 7
Provisions,  unspecified,
pkgs 174
Pumps, no 11
Pure spirits, pipes   .   .    12 nm
Pure spirits, bbls.   .
Quicksilver, flasks    .
Bice, mats
do.    csks.     .    .    .
Bum, puns.    .    .    .
do.    bbls.    .    .    .
do.    keg ....
Saddlery, pkgs.  .
Safes, iron, no.   .
Salt, sks	
do. bbls.      .    .    .
do. bxs	
Sardines, cs.   .    .
Saw mills, no.
Ship chandlery, pkgs.
Shot, bags      .    .    .
do. kegs ....
Soap, bxs	
Spices, cs	
do.   pkgs. .    .    .
Spirits, turpentine, cs.
Starch, bxs.
Stationery, pkgs.
Steel, pkgs.    .    .    .
Stoves, no. and pkgs.
Sugar, mats   .    .    .
. do.   bbls.   .    .    .
do.    bxs. and cs. .
.      9
.    19
.    36
.    23
.    45
. 139
.    17
. 518
.    14
.    44
. 101
. 255
. 19
. 9
. 489
. 50
. 13
. 112
. 169
. 239
. 816
. 465
. 348
j  Sugar, pkgs. .
Tar, bbls. .    .
Teas, pkgs.
Tin, plate, bxs.
Tin ware, pkgs.
I  Tobacco, bales
do.      cs. and
| Tools, pkgs.   .
! Trunks, no.
Tubs, nests
Twine, pkgs. .
Vinegar, bbls.
do.     kegs
Waggons, no.
Wheat, bags  .
. Whisky, puns,
do.      cs.
do.      bbls..
do.      kegs .
Wine, pipes   .
do. csks.
do. bbls.
do. kegs
do. cs.   .
do. bskts.   .
Yeast powders, cs
Zinc, rolls .    .    .
. 10
. 79
. 38
. 7
. 32
. 81
. 3
. 177
. 3£
. 236
. 136
. 51
. 187
. 32
. 32
, 242
. 128
i    17
Arrangements have been made by which, since
the 1st of March last, two steamers will run from
1 San Francisco direct to Victoria in aid of the emi
gration movement.
Large numbers of mules  have  been  imported
! from Sonora, to be employed in the transportation
of provisions and other necessaries to the diggings 130
as soon as the spring opens. The Colonist for December, 1861, says:—
" Every one expects a large immigration. We expect the living tide to commence flowing in the
course of. a month or six weeks—by the first of
March-at the utmost. The ebb in the immigration
we expect will take place not earlier than the
middle of August next. The number expected is^
variously estimated from 5000, the lowest, to 50,000
or 60,000, the highest. The only thing that can be
done is to prepare. In preparing, then, to give the?
adventurers a hearty welcome, and turn their enteE^
prise, labour, and capital to a profitable account,
there are duties to be performed that devolve on the
Government as well as on the people. If Government will put forth its energies in time, and do its
work, industry and trade will fully do their part.
If Government will build a wagon road—cut it
out, bridge the creeks, shave down the bluff edges
of ravines, and render the miry places passable—we
may have wagons by the 1st of July running up
as high as the mouth of Quesnelle River from Lil-
looet. Back-trains would then only be required to
carry provisions and passengers from the main trunk
to the different mining localities. Ox-trains—twenty
or fifty wagons in a company, as they go to New
Mexico or Utah—could carry all the merchandiser
into the interior, and carry it far cheaper than mide
or horse-wagons to the head of the wagon trav^yt
They would be slower, but not the less sure. But
the use of ox-trains depends on a passable wagon
«| ■msmm
road, and the construction of the waggon roads
depends on the Government. If Government does
not construct the road, the division of the carrying
industry into ox-trains and pack-trains is not likely
4o take place early enough this year to be of much
A December (1861) number of the Victoria Press
reports the discovery of copper in the Cowichan district :—
" Messrs. Charles Smith and C. B. Young returned
yesterday, after an absence of six days, from Cowichan District, whither they had gone on a prospecting tour fear copper.,   They return entirely successful,,
having struck a lode of rich copper near the water's
edge of  Sansum. Channel, and  bring with them
about 1500 pounds of ore, which is pronounced to
be very rich by judges.    The lode is about two feet
thick, and was traced to a distance of half a mile.
It was discovered by Mr. Smith about a year since-
and himself and Mr. Young have now pre-empted it."
That the whole of this region possesses immense
i mineral wealth there cannot be any hesitation in
I believing.    The richness of the new Nova Scotia
l gold fields, and the discovery of gold in the Stickeen
• River which, by the treaty of 1825 between Great
I Britain and Russia, is thrown open to the former
Power, tend to increase the absorbing interest now
manifested, by the industrial classes both in England  and  elsewhere in this  part of the world,
Respecting the auriferous deposits in Nova Scotia,
we beg to refer our readers to the Times of Feb.
k2 132
21, 1862. On the subject of the "Stickeen gold,"
a Canadian paper of recent date has the following :—
"Mr. Choquette brings about $40 worth of
Stickeen gold dust, which he dug himself, from the
river bars. The dust is of the class denominated
fine, although a portion of it is in small scales. The
prospecter left here in May last for the Stickeeal
River, in an Indian canoe, and reached there in
June. The river has three mouths, and is a much
larger stream than the Frazer. For 40 miles from
the coast, along the river banks, snow-clad and pre-?
cipitous mountains rear their heads, and the country
presents a very uninviting aspect. The general
characteristics are similar to the Frazer—with occasional sloughs and island, but no rapids. After the
first 40 miles are accomplished, the open country
commences and the mountains recede from the-,
banks and become less precipitous. Fine gravel
benches, covered with tall grass, and extensive bai&
are seen. Light-draught boats could ascend a dig*!
tance of 75 miles, after which small boats must be
used for 30 or 40 miles, when a canon, twelve miles
long (the only one on the river), occurs. Here the
prairie land commences. This prairie land is covered;
with fine grass, and is intersected by Indian trails
Game of every kind is abundant. The climate is
delightful—only one rainy day having occurred ig
five weeks; and up to the 1st of October there
were no signs of frost. A good trail, which th$
Indians say leads to Fort Alexandria, on the Frazetf
River, exists on the Northern shore of the rivei& !
Over this trail they claim that they can make a trip
to Frazer River in a few days. Our informant
made a very imperfect rocker with a knife and
some Indian tools, and started to work on a bar
about 100 miles from the river's mouth ; but finding the results not so favourable as he had hoped,
removed to a bar some miles higher up, where he
made the first day $5 50; second day, $ 10 ; third
day, $11 ; fourth day, $12 ; and on the last day,
$13. A great deal of the gold, being fine, was lost,
owing to the poor rocker used. At the close of the
fburth day, Mr. Choquette's wife (a Stickeen woman)
was taken violently ill, and he accordingly placed
her in a canoe and came down the stream. The
Indians, although threatening, committed no depreciations upon the property of the prospecter, owing,
no doubt, to his alliance with their countrywoman.
The higher Mr. C. ascended the river, the coarser
the gold became. Several small streams making
into the Stickeen River from the North and South
were prospected, but the results were not satisfactory. Four Indians, who worked in company with
tile prospecter, made as high as $9 a day to the hand.
Jfo*. Choquette says he found gold on the Naas
River two years ago, and that on several other
rivers making into the ocean between the Naas and
Stickeen, he got good prospects. He has mined in
California, and was a '58 pioneer on the Frazer,
and declares that he never saw a more favourable-
looking country for minerals than that bordering
on the Stickeen.   So confident is he of finding great 134 BRITISH  COLUMBIA.
diggings that he will return as soon as he can procure an outfit and a conveyance. Mr. Ghoquette
seems a very straightforward man, and his veracity
is vouched for by persons to whom he is well
The following testimony is singularly unanimous :—
The Victoria DaSy Press of October 15, 1861,
*c The accumulation of the startling but veritable
facts which come one after another, each growing
greater than its predecessor, by every steamer from
the Frazer, is really an excuse for the mania which
at present pervades all classes of society in Victoria.
To say that our population have gone mad might
be using an expression rather exaggerated, but to
state that almost every person in the community
is deeply infected with the gold fever and declares
his intention at all hazards of leaving for Cariboo
in the spring, is simply recording a fact which meets
one's ear in every house and every street It is no
wonder that Jones gets excited when his friend
Smith who, not five months ago, had not $200 in
the world he could call his own, comes down from
Cariboo heavily laden with $20,000 or $30,000 in
gold. Were these isolated cases the delirium might
be confined to a small circle, but there is by no
means a limited supply of such lucky miners. Victoria will be in another week literally inundated
with successful Caribooites. Never in the history
of gold-mining have there been such fabulous sums
«l I£B&
amassed in so incredibly short a space of time. But
a few months ago and the whole collective miners
in British Columbia did not possess as large a sum
as that which arrived by the last trip of the Otter,
yet since the spring $2,000,000 have actually been
taken out of the few creeks that have been worked
in the Cariboo. When we consider the smallness
of the number of men—fifteen hundred—the shortness of the season, and the thousand and one drawbacks which miners experience in the heart of a
country so new to civilized man, and so far from the
sea coast, we can only come to the universal conclu-
sion that British Columbia admits of no comparison
.ka. the world as a gold-producing country. From a
letter received by a gentleman in town yesterday
morning by Major Downie, we have the statement
of this experienced and indefatigable miner to the
effect that the richest portions of California in its
most palmy days are as nothing compared with
what he has seen since he left Victoria for the
The British Colonist, of the 22nd October, says :—
"Nothing is talked of now-a-days but the Cariboo
mines. When the excitement following the discovery of gold on Frazer's River was at its highest
in California, in. 1858, it was not a more universal
topic of conversation than Cariboo is here at the
present time. Were we to believe what we hear,
we would conclude that everybody will go 'to
Cariboo in the spring.' The fabulous accounts of
'rich strikes'    almost  bewilder people.      Accus- w: j®p
tomed to think eight dollar and twenty dollar digsj*
gings   exceedingly  rich,  it  is difficult  to  realise/'
the fact that men who left the shoe-bench, or the
hoe, or the jack plane, and went to Cariboo last
spring, should, after two or three months' labour
with pick and shovel, living on bacon and beans^
return  with three, five, ten, twenty, and  thirty
thousand dollars each.    It is hardly believable even
by those who are accustomed to   'lucky strikes'
and rich gold fields.    Yet it is, nevertheless, true.
It is well authenticated.   The best possible evidence j
is, given by the lucky miners themselves, by the size
of their bags of gold dust and the nuggets they carry
in their pockets as boys carry marbles.    No wonder,
then, that the only topic of conversation is Cariboo,
or that the universal destination of every one who
can by any possibility get away should be   'foja
Cariboo in the spring.'"
A voice from Lilloet gives similar evidence :—
" The news from the Cariboo mines is very encouraging ; miners are reported to be on the way down,
some with $15,000, others with piles that I think
are too good to be reliable, but on the whole the
people of British Columbia may flatter themselves
that they have the richest gold mines at present
existing on the face of the globe.
"Since I wrote the above several miners have,-
arrived from Cariboo, bringing the most exciting^
news as to the richness of the mines.    One man^
that wintered last winter at Lilloet brings down
$15,000; he made shingles last winter for a living.
There is not only a few who have made big strikes,
but many have made a handsome fortune, and those
that have not been fortunate are in good spirits and
are certain of big strikes next summer. Five hundred miners are expected down in a week or two,
so we may expect lively times for a spell."
A   correspondent  of   the   CJhristian   Guardian
^The ijagS 0f (jus{; which are now coming down
confound and strike dumb every person who has
dared to call'Frazer's RiVer gold mines a humbug.
If I had time and space I would fill sheets with the
reports of lucky ones. I could give you a long list
of those who went up last spring with hardly
enough to pay their expenses to Cariboo, and are
now returning with from $5000 to $20,000 each.
Some intelligent persons who have seen California
gin its best days have lately made tours of observation in our mines, and they declare that Cariboo
hsftrpasses California (so far as prospected) in its
palmiest days.
" It is matter also of great satisfaction, now when
the exceeding richness and vastness of our mines
are being proved beyond controversy, that the excellence of our climate and agricultural resources
could develope themselves. The recent explorations
of Colonel Moody and others establish the fact that
between the Cascade and Rocky Mountains, and
not far from the West Mines, there are millions of
acres of prairie and woodland highly suitable for
farming and grazing purposes.    Several who com-*
menced gardening two years ago have cleared from
$5000 to $15,000. A great many will go out gardening, <fec, in the upper country, next spring.
We are preparing to send such reports and specimens to the 'World's Fair' of 1862, as will not
fail to remove some of the clouds and fogs that have
hung over the prospects of this colony. When the
truth, as it now presents itself to us, is lifted up to
the eyes of the nations, it will completelyseclipse the
most hopeful and flattering passages that I have ever
written from this country. I have always written
very cautiously, and now I am afraid to write the
whole truth, lest my readers would not receive it"
The accompanying table, taken from the Oregon
Farmer, shews the relative fineness of the dust
assayed by Mr, Agrell, of Bortland :—
Fineness. Value per oz.
Frazer River   ...830 to 850—$17 15-75 to $17 15\L1
Rhodes' Creek...800 to 836—$16 5375 to $17 15"75
NezPerces  770 to 800—$15 91-73 to $16 53*75
Rock Creek 810 to 840—$16 74-42 to $17 36-43
Cariboo 815 to 830—$16 84-75 to $17 15-75
Colville 770 to 809—$15 91-78 to $16 72-35
South Fork  829 to 830—$16 95-69 to $17 15-75
The annexed extracts are from the letter forwarded to head-quarters by the Times correspondent,
and published in that journal on the 25th March,
1862 :—
Victoria, Vancouver Island, Jan. 20,1862.*
Beginning with Frazer River, the main artery of
* See on this letter and the leader which appeared in the
same number of the Times, a sensible article in the Examiner
for March 29, 1862. .
the auriferous region, I may state that gold is known
to exist and has been worked at a great many places
in the river and on its banks from a point about forty-
five miles from the mouth of the river up to near its
source in the Rocky Mountains; in other words,
from the 49th up to the 53rd parallel of north latitude, a distance (taking in the windings) of some
800 miles. The south branch of the Frazer has its
sources near Mount Brown in the Rocky Mountains, in about 53° north latitude, 118° 40' west
longitude. Thence this branch flows for 290 miles
to Fort George, a post of the Hudson's Bay Company. The north branch rises in an opposite
direction. It receives its supply from a series of
lakes lying between 54° and 55° of north latitude,
longitude about 124° 50' west, and runs a course of
260 miles to its junction with the south branch,
some miles below the 54th parallel of north latitude.
Here the union of the two branches forms the
| Frazer River proper. Adding the north branch,
which is also a gold-bearing stream, and which was
" worked " last season, to the other arm, the two will
give us a continuous stretch of auriferous riverain
territory upwards of 1000 miles in length, extending for many miles back into the country on both
sides, but not including the tributary rivers which
fell into the Frazer. In short, the river itself is now
known to be auriferous, and to pass through a gold-
bearing country throughout its whole course. Gold
is also found in most of the tributaries of the Frazer,
of which no less than 59 are known.    The great
if 140
length of the main river and the number of its
tributaries will give some idea of the auriferous
resources of the country.
Besides the gold found in the beds and on the
shores of these streams, the Frazer itself and many
of its tributaries are skirted or bordered by terraces,
all of which yield gold also. These terraces, or
" benches," as the miners call them, run at intervals,
along both sides of the rivers for miles in length;
and they recede where the mountains retire, for
distances back into the valleys, varying from a few
acres to a few miles in breadth. They are objects* s
of curiosity and speculation, and add much to the
beauty of the rude scenes in which they occur, from
the regularity and evenness of their structure. They
generally occur on both sides of the river (opposite^
to each other), at the same place, sometimes at the
same elevations on both sides, sometimes at different
elevations, high on this and low on the other side
of the river; and in some places they are multiplied
into several successive level parallel plateaux, rising
one above the other as they recede from the bank;
These terraces are composed of the ordinary alluvia*
deposits—loam, gravel, stones, sand, and boulders ;
and they are thick masses rising generally to a
height of 150 to 200 feet.
This geological formation occurs more frequently
on the Frazer than on the other rivers. The terraces are also larger on the main river, in some
cases assuming the proportions of hills, all with
regular and perpendicular faces.    Their formation *
ig ^perhaps due to the fact that the valleys between
tbe mountains were at one period filled up, or perhaps formed lakes. Each "bench" may mark successive periods of drainage or subsidence of the
water; and their present elevation above the rivers
may be due to their having been cut away by the
rapid-flowing streams. The tumultuous and swift-
flowing Frazer woidd soon cut a bed for itself (as it
has done) down to the rock.
, The terraces contain vast deposits of gold; and
to be worked to advantage the "bench diggings"
must command a stream of water supplied from a
Source higher than their own surfaces, so as to give
a fall to enable the miner to apply the water to the
face of the "bench" by a hose. The force of the
stream is due to the height of the fall. A good
strong stream playing upon the face of the hill will
disintegrate a great quantity of " pay dirt" in a
short time. The floating rubbish, or "dirt," is
caught in a long sluice at the base, provided with
" riffles " on the bottom, and spread with quicksilver
to catch the gold. This mode of mining is called
by the miners "hydraulic mining." Such is the
wealth of Cariboo that no quicksilver was used, for
the miner could afford to lose all the "fine dust"
and to be satisfied with the " lumps."
It happens, fortunately, that Frazer River and
most of its tributaries supply water in abundance
at an elevation which affords the necessary fall,
from the elevated and broken character of the
country; while there are inexhaustible supplies in
I 142
the numerous lakes dispersed all over the upper
district. Timber for the erection of "flumes" is
also abundant everywhere.
The canal system of British Columbia will be
comparatively inexpensive from the abundance of
water and its eligibility, encouraging facts to the
miner, because the small outlay of capital required
will keep his " water dues" low.
A good deal of capital has been already invested'
profitably in " water ditches," or canals for the supply of the miners on the Frazer, by old miners who*
had saved money and by persons unconnected witHF.
mining. This interest will in time become a good
subject for the investment of English capital, as the <
mining population increases.
In British Columbia, property is fully protected
by law, and its legitimate profits are secured to the
capitalist who has invested his money in canals not
more by the operation of the Gold Fields Act than
by the existence of a healthy public sentiment.
On the one hand, while the capitalist is allowed to
realize a handsome return from his-charges for the
supply of water, the miner is, on the other hand,
protected from extortion.    Differences do arise, bulr
they are always settled in a rational and peaceable*
way, either by appeal to the Gold Commissioner <^
the district, who has tbe power to take cognizance
of such cases, or to the judge of the colony, who:
acts j udicially.
Whenever the "bench diggings" have been
" worked" they have paid well    They have been
—i o.'^Cji
neglected for the greater attractions of the " placer
diggings," where the gold is found nearer the surface and with less labour. But I consider this
class of diggings of great prospective value. They
will give employment to two interests—capital and
labour. They are generally situated within easy
reach of supplies. They are more accessible to all
the influences of civilization than more interior
localities. They are in the neighbourhood of some
good land, which will enable the labourer to alternate his time between mining and husbandry, and
where he can make his home—the great want which
the mines generally do not supply.
Although now neglected, tbe " benches " will be
appreciated and come into play when the efflorescence of gold near the surface shall have been exhausted. When this happens they will supply wealth
and a profitable living to a mixed population of
miners, ditch-owners, traders, and labourers, and
that for a long period of time, of which no one can
compute the numbers of the one nor the duration
of the other.
The reports of the mining this season on the
Frazer in the space between Fort Hope and Fort
George, a distance of about 270 miles, give the
daily individual earnings at all sums between $3
and $15. Very little has as yet been done between
these two points, and very little will be done so
long as the attractions of $100 to $1000 a-day continue elsewhere. I will now carry you to other
mining localities. 144
The Similkameen mines yielded last season $16
to $17 a-day to the hand occasionally. A party of
three men took $240 in three days' -work from
" sluice diggings :" and the " rpcker," used in " wet
diggings," yielded $4, $5, and up to $8 a-day to the
hand. Number of miners 200, of whom 150 were
Chinese. A wagon road for 25 miles from Hope,
and a bridle road of 15 miles in continuation, approach this district.
Sixty miles further to the southward comes Oka-
nagan. The average yield here was only $4 a-daya
and the miners were few—some 26 men, some of
whom divided their time between mining and husbandry. Okanagan Lake, a beautiful sheet of waters!
in a rich pastoral district, is from 80 to 100 miles
long, and 8 to 10 miles wide, deep, and well suited
to navigation. There is a small population in the
valley, chiefly French Canadians, and a Catholic
mission. There are two small lakes tributary to
the great lake, and nineteen streams fall into the
latter, of which seven yield gold.
In the same general direction, and distant from
Fort Hope 150 miles, is Rock Creek, close to the
American frontier (lat. 49°'north), and 60 miles
west of the Columbia River. The longitude of
Rock Creek is 119° west. This place acquired
a temporary reputation in 1860 for the richness of
its mines, when a considerable population flocked to
it and extemporized a town. In 1861 most of the
miners were seduced away by the superior attractions of Cariboo, the latest and richest Eldorado THOMPSON RIVEE.
yet discovered,- so that only 30 white men and 225
Chinamen remained.
A party of three white men saved in the season
$12,000 that I know of, after paying expenses;
$100 a-day to the hand was sometimes made. The
average earnings are returned at $7 a-day per man.
There are both "bench" and "wet" diggings, and
both are productive and extensive. The place is
now abandoned.
There being no more mining localities of any note
on the southern frontier, we will proceed to the
northward and westward for about 120 miles,
passing on the way several auriferous streams flowing southward, and in fact, in every direction, as
well as a "pastoral and agricultural country of great
extent, without comment for the present, and get
into the heart of the Thompson River country, as
established by the Hudson Bay Company in their
nomenclature of local divisions of the " Indian
If you could fancy yourself on the banks of the
' Thompson you would find it a large, swift-flowing
> river, rolling with considerable impetuosity between
ihigh rocky banks.    Near its mouth it is too full,
too rapid, and too rocky for mining.    Its source is
not in the mountains, but comes from the overflow
[of a series of lakes dispersed over a large extent of
the central portion of the country whicli lies to the
[eastward of the Frazer,  and stretches over more
[than two degrees of latitude and as many of longitude.    It falls into the Frazer, after running a very
if JSP
tortuous course of perhaps a hundred miles, at
the small town of Lytton, a mining and trading
hamlet on the forks of the two rivers, 75 miles
(above) north and a little to the west of Fort
Several streams flow into the Thompson—the
Nieaomeen and the Nicola on its left or east bank.
We are now in what may emphatically be called
the "Lake District." The last-mentioned Kttis
river drains two lakes, Nicola Lake and Stump
Lake—the first eight miles by three, the other much
smaller. The next tributary is the Buonaparte, on
the opposite side—a very important river, from its
rich auriferous deposits and from the valuable arable
soil through which it flows. It drains nine lakes,
two of which, Loon and Vert, are each about 12
miles long. After receiving the Buonaparte, the
Thompson describes three great tortuous bends,
which brings it up to Lake Kamloops, which empties
into it (I am describing the river up stream). Lake
Kamloops is 20 miles long by five miles wide.
From this lake the river continues its course to the
east and north, receives the waters of North River,
and extends to Shushwap Lake, which also discharges into the Thompson. Shushwap Lake, a
fine sheet of water, situated in a rich pastoral country, 45 miles long, 5 to 10 miles wide, and studded
with islands, receives the waters of two other lakes,
which discharge by the BarriSre River, as well as
those of two rivers of considerable length which
rise in the range that divides the valley of the LAKE KAMLOOPS.
Jrazer from that of the Columbia. The lake is a
little below the 51st parallel of north latitude, and
the 119° of west longitude passes over the east
end of it. Kamloops Lake is about a degree further west, and about 12 miles further south The
Tranquille and the Copper River both fall into the
the latter lake.
The North River, already mentioned, runs nearly
due north for a great portion of its course. Correctly speaking, it runs from the north, but I am
describing as if I were ascending the river. This
river has several tributaries of great length, some
rising far to the -eastward in the watershed of the
great valley of the Frazer, and others draining a
long chain of lakes stretching far up into the country beyond the 53rd parallel of north latitude, and
embracing nearly three degrees of longitude; while
its "head waters" flow from a range which is the
watershed of Swamp River, flowing in an opposite
direction into the Cariboo country.
All the streams which I have mentioned are
auriferous—those which are tributary to the Thompson itself, and those which are tributary to its
Such portions of the Thompson as run through
somewhat level ground are also auriferous. Seven
miles from Kamloops, 150 miners worked upon one
of such portions and made $ 16 a-day to the man,
^rocking" on the "bars" in the bed when the
river was low. The banks are very extensive, but
require water ditches for "washing" them, as they
i2 148
run high. Tranquille yielded $7, $15, and $20
a-day to "a crowd of Chinamen." North River
gave $8 to $10 a day to the hand ; and on
the Barriere a community of French Canadians
ntade as high as $50 a-day to the hand. Beyond
the portions of North River which have been
worked for gold near its embouchure, the country
hereabouts has not been prospected. This is about
the centre of the colony, and about 80 miles of thiSM
space from south to north, by about 100 miles rroni
east to west, have not been developed. It may be
auriferous ; but its character on the face of the soil
is pastoral. It is a high table-land which produces
abundant pasture, free from forest, and only interspersed with timber. Its climate in summer is dry
and equable, and in winter cold, but not severe ;
and noted for its salubrity. In fact, the climate
of British Columbia is good throughout the whole
extent of the country, and there is no drawback
except from the presence of the mosquitoes in
summer. These insects are so numerous as to form
a pest while they prevail.
If we could pursue a straight western coursef
from the Fort to Frazer River for about 100 miles,
we should strike the new town of Lillooett, situated!
at a point where the two great routes of travel into
the interior meet that from Hope and Lytton by
the river, and that by the Harrison Valley and the
Lillooett chain of lakes. Lillooet is the great final
starting point to the northern mines, and beyond
this there is no made road, and no other means of LILLOOETT.
transport than horses, mules, and what the miners
expressively term " footing it."
Lillooett is distant from the mouth of the Frazer
(on the Gulf of Georgia) by the river route, vid
Hope, Yale, and Lytton, 220 miles ; and by the
Harrison route, vid Harrison Lake, by steamer,
Douglas, portages, and four lakes, ci-ossed by
steamers, 238 miles. The. first route commands
steamers up to Yale, the rest of the journey must
be ridden or walked. The other route commands
steamers to Douglas; a stage coach thence to Wil-
Aianis's Lake, 29^ miles, on a road made along the
Harrison River, chiefly by the Royal Engineers;
an open boat on the first lake of five miles,
steamers on the other three lakes, which are
together 49 miles long, and the portages between
the lakes and Lillooett, which in the aggregate of
the four of them are 33| miles long, can be ridden
or walked. Both routes afford prospects of beauty
and grandeur seldom seen elsewhere, but I dare
not trespass on your space so far as to describe
them, nor could I do justice to the subject if I
Jmed. From Lillooett to the first or lower Cariboo mines the distance is about 260 miles.
A few miles beyond Lillooett, and on the same
(the west) side, Bridge River falls into the Frazer.
Bridge River is very rich in gold.    The Indians of
qthe neighbourhood, make considerable earnings in
tiJL,vworking in the rudest manner with the most
inefficient implements.    It was here the Bishop of
Columbia found them making an ounce
ay to .se
the hand, as I mentioned in my last letter. Nodules
of pure copper have been found in the bed of the
river, indicating the existence of copper veins in
the neighbouring banks.
Quesnelle River has two branches, one of which
drains Quesnelle Lake, lying a degree and a-half to
the eastward of the Frazer, and which is 50 miles
long. The other branch drains Cariboo Lake, which
receives Swamp River and Lower Cariboo Lake,
into which Keithley's Creek, one of the Cariboo
streams, empties. At the junction of the two
branches a town, the nearest to Cariboo diggings, is
built, chiefly for the supply of the latter. The
place is called " The Forks of Quesnelle."
Both branches of the Quesnelle are highly auriferous. Mining began here in 1859, and led to
the discovery of Cariboo, situate 50 miles further
north. The returns for last summer were that nine
out of ten of the claims paid over an ounce a-day
to the hand. The river banks enable the miners to
work in winter. The diggings must be rich to have
retained any miners so close to Cariboo, where fortunes were made in the course of a few weeks.
One grand prominent feature of the country is a
chain of mountains which run from our southern
frontier (on 49° north latitude) in a north-westerly
direction through the country, and in fact, beyond
the northern limit of the colony. This range is in
many parts very lofty, runs nearly parallel to tbe
Rocky Mountains, and bears the successive names of VAST GOLD-FIELD.
the Snowy Mountains, the Bald Mountains, and the
Peak Mountains^ from the height of several of the
more elevated portions having induced the belief
that these portions were detached mountains, and
not parts of a connected chain. It is now known
that the different eminences, which at a distance
seem to be isolated, in reality form but one vast
range subordinate to the Rocky Mountains. It, in
fact, forms the watershed of the great basin of the
Frazer River, one side of which drains itself into
the valley of the Frazer, and the other into that of
the Columbia. The whole of this vast range is now
known to be aurifBrous. It has been traced for 400
miles, and "fine and coarse gold is everywhere
found on its western dopes from Rock Creek in the
south to Cariboo in the north." Cariboo itself is
but one point in the range. It is nearly all in British territory, extending, as, already remarked, beyond the northern frontier of British Columbia and
into the Indian territory of Stickeen, to the east of
-the Russian possessions on the Pacific. It is the
longest stretch of continuous inland gold-bearing
country yet discovered in the world. Its value and
importance are incalculable both to the mother
country and to these colonies, for when it comes to
be efficiently worked by tunnelling it may continue
to produce gold for ages, as long, perhaps, as gold
retains its value among mankind. Respecting Cariboo, Governor Douglas was good enough to furnish me with the following statement in writing,
1 152
taken down by himself from a Cariboo miner, Mfioj
Steele; but I received it after I had finished my-
letter :—
"Steele's company consisted of five partners, of
which Mr. Steele, an American, was one. Their
claim was on Williams's Creek (Cariboo, of course).
In the summer they sawed the lumber themselves^}
and made their own sluices. Their claim did not
prospect as good as many other claims. Nevertheless, they went at it with a will; made nothing the
first three days; persevered, and the fourth day
made 4oz.; the fifth day, lOoz.; and the sixth clay,
41oz. (the market value of 41oz. of gold in sterling
is 2901. 4s. 2d.). From that time, after the sixth
day's work, when the return rose to 41oz. a day, it
kept increasing, until it reached 387oz. a day ; and
the last day's work yielded a return of 409oz. The
five partners employed 'four hired hands' to ass'istlj
them to clear away the tailings. The claim was
one of the most difficult to work, as it required
eight feet to eighteen feet of top-stripping of superincumbent earth whicn covered the auriferous stratum, or 'pay-dirt.' This latter was composed of a
blue clay, six feet thick, mixed with gravel and decomposed slate. The whole area of the mine worked
was only eighty feet by twenty-five feet, and the yield
amounted to $105,000, equal to 21,875?. That so
much gold was dug out of so small a space as eighty
feet by twenty-five feet is a pregnant fact. It proves
that the wealth buried in this remote region lies
concentrated in masses thick and plentiful, which is MR.   STEELE S   CLAIM.
corroborated by the shortness of the period of labour
■—not over two months' actual work. This is a short
period to have earned 21,875?. in, certainly, yet the
exuberance of the gold of these mines is more clearly
demonstrated by the rapidity of the accumulation.
I shall show this result more clearly by converting
Mr. Steele's gold ounces into American currency.
The produce of the labour of the first day that the
claim yielded anything was $68; that of the next
day,- $170; of the following day, $697; and so on,
increasing until it reached the astounding sum of
$6579 in a day; and culminated in a ' return' of
$6953 on the ' last day's work.'
" To prevent any exaggeration in my conversion
of the gold-dust, I have taken the money value of
the ounce at $17, although the average value of
Cariboo 'dust' is $17 65c. and 37-1000ths, so that
I am under the mark. In other words, this company's gold produced to the partners more money
in the market than I have valued it at. Their gold
may have been worth $18 the ounce."
To show still more clearly to English readers
the prospects and rewards of labour in British
Columbia, I will paraphrase Mr. Steele's statement,
which will place it in another and, perhaps, more
practical light. I will suppose that the five miners
who owned this mining claim were Englishmen, and
that they had sent their earnings home. The gold
would, by the rule of trade, go to the Bank of England, and be converted into sterling money—say in
London.    I will deduct all the charges of remitting
im 154
the bullion (gold-dust), and then see what the
miners would have, net money, in London. The
fruit of their first day's "yield" would be
13?. 10*. 2d.; of the next day's yield, 34& 14s. 2&9I
the following day's yield, 1343?. 4*. 3d; and the
last day's yield would be 1419?. lis. 5d. The
mines would have been to them a prolific mother,
for the last day's return shows an increase of
76?. 7s. 2d. over and above the general run of the
yield of " lucky days," as the miners term their
successful and satisfactory periods. Mr. Steele's
return of the gross yield was corroborated by the
quantity of gold-dust brought to Victoria, where
he remained for some time. Indeed, the miners
seldom exaggerate their earnings. Their general
reports take the opposite direction. The partners
return to their claim in Cariboo in the spring to
resume work, and they expect to do much better
next season, as the mine is already well opened.
To have made the statement complete, I should
have mentioned that the four hired men did not
share in the profits. They were paid $8 a-day
wages and " found;" and they did not work during
the whole season.
I may assert that there are no low earnings. Here
is exactly how the matter stands. Some of the
Chinamen, while serving their novitiate, are satisfied
with such poor diggings as yield only $1 to $2 a
day, but they are soon forced by their taskmasters^
who paid their expenses from China and San Francisco, and for whose benefit they labour, and who WAGES  0E  LABOUi
tax them both for repayment of these expenses and
for a profit on the venture, to abandon such poor
diggings for a richer. And as to white miners, not
one of them will work for the small earnings I
have mentioned. If a miner cannot fall upon a
rich " claim " he will hire himself to other more fortunate claim-owners, who will pay him from $5 to
$10 a day, according to location and circumstances.
In this way it comes that no poor diggings are
worked. The surface of the mineral region is being
"skimmed"—not efficiently worked. But by and
by the miners will be satisfied with ground which
they now reject. This time is distant, however,
owing to the extent of the field, unless the country
receives a large addition to its mining population.
I suppose it would take half a million of miners to
bring the mines into play. It would take a much
larger population to develope them efficiently.
Another cause influences the miner in his conduct. Wages generally are high for all kinds of
labour. Common labourers get $3 a day at the
lowest, some get more. Farm labourers get 61. a
month and are "found" I pay an English labourer
whom I found working on the roads 10?. a month,
and he " finds " himself, for looking after my horse
and doing odds and ends about the place. This
was his pay from the road contractor. Mechanics
get $5 (1?.) a day. With these rates of wages in
competition with mining, aud with the prices of
provisions very high in the remote mining country,
owing to expense of transport, the miner naturally 15C
abandons poor diggings which yield a low return ;
so you understand why there are no low returns.
My advice to emigrants from the old country
will be short, and, while it can easily be remembered,
cannot be misunderstood. British Columbia wants
two classes only—men with money, and men wij^h;
bodily strength—capitalists and labourers. Both
classes will do well. The one will find lucrative
employment for its capital, the other still more profitable employment for its labour. If either faj(f
it will be its own fault. Should either of these two
classes be married, let them briug their wives and
families; the more numerous the progeny the betj^e^
The Times newspaper in its leader of the 25th
March last, and the Times' correspondent in his
letter here quoted, have certainly conspired to draw
a glowing and seductive picture of the condition
and prospects of British Columbia as a gold-prc* I
ducing colony. The Times' account is no doubt
true enough in the main; but that the colouring,
of the leading article especially, is often too higta
there is abundant evidence. Still the Governor1, in
his latest despatches, speaks favourably of the social
state of the gold districts, and of the respect generally paid by the miners to public order. The
Times' articles are full of sunshine; other writers
tell a different tale. It is a difficult course to judge
between the two; but, nevertheless, that is the
course which we have endeavoured to pursue. We
feel it to be our duty to present to intending emi- ITS  FUTURE.
grants, not a fancy landscape, but as true an idea as
possible of the locality in which they may be about
to plant themselves ; and we believe that we should
be greatly misled if we accepted unreservedly either
the statements of the Times, or the far less sanguine
views propounded in other quarters. We repeat
that Governor Douglas—no contemptible authority
—invariably reports well of the settlement; and
the Bishop of Columbia has always been a firm
believer in its success and prosperity. At the same
time, we do not entertain the slightest doubt that
drunkenness and every form of depravity may be
witnessed ad nauseam at the diggings ; but the
question is, in what part of the globe may not
these vices be witnessed 1 Things will find their
level by degrees, and some sort of society will grow
out of the present chaos; but in the interim, anybody who goes out to these latitudes must look for
rough work and rougher neighbours. Still, nobody
who keeps his eyes open, who uses his hands well,
and who is temperate and thrifty in his habits, has
the slightest reason to be discouraged; for he will
find in British Columbia, with its coal beds, its gold
fields, its copper, and its agricultural resources, such
an opening as perhaps he would find nowhere else
on the surface of the globe; and at this moment
there are thousands on their way, sharing in this
faith, and who, if they be true to themselves, and
forswear the temptations inseparable from life in a
young colony, will prosper beyond their brightest
expectations. 158
We conclude with a few select extracts from the
Journal of the Bishop of Columbia :—
" May 22, 1860.—Laid corner-stone of Trinitjj*
Church, New Westminster. The site of the new church
is a very beautiful one in Victoria Gardens, and, commanding an extensive view, will be a mostsprominent
object from the river to steamers arriving from the
sea; at present two deep ravines are on either side,
around it are large stumps of trees, and the ground
is entirely unlevelled. Here the frame of the
flooring had been laid, being massive sills on thick-
short columns of wood. Under one of these i pin-
nings,' the south-east outer corner of the porch, was
laid the stone, of granite; a bottle of coins, with
inscription, was inserted. The same form of service"
was used as at St. John's, Victoria ; the service was
commenced by Mr. Sheepshanks, and the Bishop
followed.    The Governor laid the stone.
" June, 1860.—One of the most interesting things
in connexion with gold-mining is the courage and
enterprise of the miner. Water is absolutely necessary for two purposes: washing away the earth above
the gold, and washing the earth or ' pay dirt' which
contains the gold. For the former work an immense
power of water is frequently neeessary; this is brought
from a distance in wooden canals, aqueducts, and
courses excavated in the soil or rock, and this is
made to descend upon the workings, and applied by
a hose to wash away vast masses of earth
"At Hill's Bar I visited to-day an aqueduct
two miles long, which had cost $12,000, or 2i00t>f 1 THE ROCKER.
a company accomplished it in twelve shares, eight
of which were held by one man. The miners of
the various claims pay for a head of water five
dollars a day. Sometimes there will be forty claims
and this flume will be making to the proprietors
200 dollars, or 40?. a day. We visited spots where,
by working without the sluicing power, Chinese
were making five dollars a day. The sluice is
where the water is brought in a body from the
flume, and continual shovelling of earth into the
shiice boxes produces a large return of gold,
because more earth can be washed, and the more
earth washed in a given time, the greater the vield.
The rocker is by the river-side. It is a sort of
wheelbarrow on rollers, with a scuttle front; within
is a sieve, beneath which are two blankets, and at
the bottom is a copper plate with quicksilver; the
' pay earth' is cast into the sieve, and the machine
rocked with one hand while the other hand keeps
pouring in water ; the earth and water pass through
the sieve and blankets; the sieve stops the stones
and larger particles, the blanket catches other atoms
of gold, &c, and the quicksilver retains the golden
"June 5.—I heard a strange noise in passing
near an Indian hut; when I approached I found
it to be that of Skiyon, the Indian bear-hunter.
His wife had her sick child in her lap. Before her
was the medicine man practising enchantments
upon the child. He was a strong-featured man of
about forty.    He  repeated over and over a few 160
words with considerable gesture. Occasionally he
would stroke the breast and stomach of the child
Beside him was a basin of water with some whitening mixture in it ; this he would take and rub
0 '
upon his hands, or he would blow into his hands
and upon the child, then burst forth again into his
lament and incantation. The mother held the
infant towards him, and evidently felt considerable
faith in the enchanter.
" Overtook a miner from California, with a
revolver on one side and a bowie-knife on the
other. I spoke about the former; he said they
were needed in California, but not here.
" I have met very few miners with their weapons;
once none went without. Things are now as quiet
and orderly as possible. All classes are well-
treated. Chinamen, Indians, and Blacks, have
justice equal with others. Indeed it is evident
that what the Californian looked upon as a sign of
high spirit and courage he now thinks little of, and
these terrible weapons are put away.
" June 7.—I took a walk with Mr. Pringle alon^
0 O
a beautiful and romantic trail, following a stream
and glen to Lake Dallas, and then through a gorge
into a valley on its northern side, where was a
stream wending its way to the Frazer. I visited
some of the Indian potato grounds in that valley;
the soil is very rich. The rows of potatoes were
laid with great regularity, indeed in figures and
patterns  such  as
They also 'earth
you see on their basket-work,
up' at the proper time, which SCENERY;
shows a more advanced state than I expected. We
ascended a height, and upon a rocky, mossy knoll,
shaded by pines, we had an extensive view of
mountain and river scenery. I could have sat there
for hours, impressed with the grandeur of the works
of God, How insignificant the most gigantic
accomplishments of man ! We were then on the
east side of the Quequealla. A canoe, paddled by
an Indian and his squaw, brought us quickly down
the rapid, rolling, swelling Frazer, to Hope, for
which we paid the sum of a dollar, 4s. 2d., for
half an hour's paddle. These Indians are well paid."
"June 14.—I crossed the river opposite Yale,
and took the trail to Hill's Bar. We walked
through groves of young pines; much of the
ground is cleared.
" Hill's Bar, about a couple of miles below Yale,
was the scene of great excitement in 1858 ; it was
the richest of all tbe diggings ; thousands flocked to
it, and thousands of pounds have been extracted
from it. It was here that the McGowan riots took
place. Then Colonel Moody marched up his men
to capture the rioters, but when he came to the spot
drank champagne with them instead.
" The first gold diggings were upon the bank of
the river; upon this bank grew giant trees—all
these, and acres of soil, have been swept away to
the depth of some ten or twelve feet. It is now
found that the higher banks, or flats, still further
from the river, are very auriferous. These are now
being worked.
M 162
" The excitement of gold-mining is great. The
miners seem never to tire. There is an interest in
the work which always sustains them. I was told
cards and whiskey are their bane. They seldom
play for money, but for drink, a dollar a game. A
reckless man will go into Yale on Sunday, and.
spend twenty-five to forty dollars in drink and
treating others. There are, however, many temperate men. A friend of mine, though an old
miner, never touches spirit, only porter and ale.
He always has a dozen of English porter in his
house (on the Bar).
"June 26.—On this my 44th birthday, I awoke
on the floor of a log-hut, in the wild and almost inaccessible recesses of the Cascade Mountains, tlie-
Frazer flowing at my feet. The five other individuals who occupied other parts of the room had beeu
not otherwise than quiet; sleep, however, I had
had but little. I rose about half-past five. A comfortable breakfast at seven, of tea and coffee, ham,
&c, prepared us for the arduous day before us. Our
horses had arrived in the neighbourhood the night
o 0     -
before, and about eight came up ready equipped.
" The Frazer is about 250 yards broad at this
point. The current is strong. A rope is suspended
from bank to bank. From this rope is tackle, which
works the large punt-shaped ferry-boat. A most ingenious method; the current acting as the wind acts
upon a sail, the side of the boat being the sailj
and kept by the tackle in an inclined position to
the stream.    The stronger the current the less in-
.elined need be the boat.    Without the slightest
difficulty the ferry is thus quickly crossed.
" The view of the Frazer, encompassed in mountains from the front, or rather from a point near, is
grand indeed.
"July 10,—Packing is one of the most lucrative
employments. A train of twelve or eighteen horses
and mules very soon pays the expense of first cost,
and then great profits are made. The packers are
principally Mexicans; there are, however, many
" I met this day a train under the conduct of a
very odd-looking dust-begrimed packer. He had a
broken-in, slouched wide-awake. I was introduced
to him. His speech showed him to be an educated
English gentleman. A few years since he was a
smart officer with his regiment in Canada. He
came to California^ where he followed ' packing.'
He now packs on British soil with the best horse-
pack in the colony.
" July 18.—All merchandize is carried here upon
pack-horses, the only exception being that Indians
also carry goods. Pack-mules carry the heaviest loads.
I saw mules to-day packed with nearly 400 lbs. of
goods. There is a great art in packing; bulk is the
thing to avoid; if a pack is in small compass much
more can be carried than when the contrary.
"July 20.—Columbia does not abound in the
feathered tribe. I have seen, however, eagles, hawks,
rooks, jays, grouse, ducks, loons, robins (as large as
blackbirds, and good eating), and hiunming birds.
" July 25.—I visited Rough Flat; a miner told
me some were making an ounce a day per man.
"Aug. 7.—On board were two respectable-looking men. They were American miners returning
home with a comfortable 'pile.' They both acknowledged this. I asked what was considered f a
pile.' From 3000 to 5000 dollars, was the reply :
this was the result of two years' mining in British
"Aug. 8.—My belief in the progress of the colony
has been confirmed ; there is no doubt now, upon
any single mind, as to the vast resources and attractions in mineral wealth. There is considerable
agricultural land in the lower portion of the Frazer,
that is to say along the river up to Hope; on either
side large tracts invite the farmer, more especially
about the Chilewaak, the Pitt River, and Hope, to
a fair return of capital and labour. Above this
point the country is difficult of access, rough and
mountainous, unless you get some fifty miles through
the Cascade Range. Nothing could have opened
this tract except its mineral produce. It would
drive back the sturdiest traveller. It did send
back, at the first, thousands, in poverty and despair.
"The appellation of all miners is 'boy;' their
chief is ' cap.' All are called Dick, Tom, Harry.
One man, a notorious character, was nicknamed
Liverpool Jack. Men are not known by their real
names. You inquire, as I have often done, the
name of some one, and nobody knows his name :
only he is called so-and-so, of such-and-such a bar. NICKNAMES.
I was speaking to a miner, who said he had just
come from California, and with him had come a
miner who had sold his claim there for 1800 dollars. I asked what the man's name was; he said
he went by a nickname, ' Bam'—he knew not his
real name. He had known in California instances
of considerable difficulty arising from this. A man
came into the country from the eastern States seeking his brother ; his inquiries for Thomas Maguire
produced no result; and he went away back to the
States. Yet his brother was known and was working with those who had heard the inquiry, but they
had not the least notion their friend, who had some
apposite nickname, was really Thomas Maguire."
Ii w
Whereas it is provided by the Gold Fields Act,
1859, that the Governor, for the time being, of
British Columbia, may, by writing under his hand
and the public seal of the colony, make rules and
regulations in the nature of by-laws for all matters
relating to mining.
And whereas, in conformity with the said Act,
certain rules and regulations have already been
issued bearing date the 7th of September, 1859.
1. The mines in the said level benches shall be
known as " bench diggings," and shall for the purpose of ascertaining the size of claims therein be excepted out of the class of " dry diggings," as defined
in the rules and regulations of the 7th of September
2. The ordinary claims on any bench diggings
shall be registered by the gold commissioner according to such one of the two following methods of
measurement as he shall deem most advantageous
on each mine, viz.: One hundred feet square, or else APPENBIX.
& strip of-land twenty-five feet deep at the edge of
the cliff next the river, and bounded by two straight
lines.carried as nearly as possible in each case perpendicular to the general direction of such cliff
across the level bench up to and not beyond the
foot of the descent in the rear; and in such last
mentioned case, the space included between such
two boundary lines when produced over the face of
the cliff in front as far as the foot of such cliff and
no farther, and all mines in the space so included
shall also form a part of such claim.
3. The gold commissioner shall have authority in
-eases where the benches are narrow, to mark the
-claims in such manner as he shall think fit, so as to
include an adequate claim. And shall also have
power to decide on the cliffs which, in his opinion,
form the natural boundaries of benches.
4. The gold commissioner may in any mine of
smj denomination where the pay dirt is thin or
claims in small demand, or where from any circumstances he shall deem it reasonable, allow any free
miner to register two claims in his own name, and
allow such period as he may think proper for non-
working either one of such claims. But no person
shall be entitled to hold at one time more than two
-claims of the legal size. A discoverer's claim shall
for this purpose be reckoned as one ordinary claim.
5. All claims shall be subject to the public rights
-of way and water in such manner, direction, and
•extent as the gold commissioner shall from time to
time direct; no mine shall be worked within ten 168
feet of any road, unless by the previous sanction of
the gold commissioner.
6. In order to ascertain the quantity of water ins
any ditch or sluice, the following rules shall be observed, viz.:—
The water taken into a ditch shall be measured
at the ditch head. No water shall be taken into a
ditch except in a trough whose top and floor shalp
be horizontal planes, and sides parallel vertical!
planes; such trough to be continued for six times-
its breadth in a horizontal direction from the point
at which the water enters the trough. The top of
the trough to be not more than seven inches, and
the bottom of the trough not more than seventeen
inches, below the surface of the water in the reservoir, all measurements being taken inside the
trough and in the low-water or dry season. The
area of a vertical transverse section of tbe trough
shall be considered as the measure of the quantity
of water taken by the ditch.
1. That from and after the date hereof (Januaaadii
4th, I860,) British subjects, and aliens who shall
take the oath of allegiance to Her Majesty and Hern
successors, may acquire unoccupied and unreserved
and unsurveyed Crown land in British Columbia APPENDIX.
(not being the site of an existent or proposed town,
or auriferous land available for mining purposes, or
an Indian Reserve or Settlement), in fee simple,
under the following conditions.
2. The person desiring to acquire any particular
plot of land of the character aforesaid, shall enter
into possession thereof and record his claim to any
quantity not exceeding 160 acres thereof, with the
magistrate residing nearest thereto, paying to the
said magistrate the sum of eight shillings for re-
0 O 0
cording such claim. Such piece of land shall be of
a rectangular form, and the shortest side of the
rectangle shall be at least two-thirds of the longest
side. The claimant shall give the best possible
description thereof to the magistrate with whom his
claim is recorded, together with a rough plan thereof, and identify the plot in question by placing at
the corners of the land four posts, and by stating in
has .description any other landmarks on the said 160
acres which he may consider of a noticeable character.
3. Whenever the Government survey shall extend
to the land claimed, the claimant who has recorded
his claim as aforesaid, or his heirs, or in case of the
grant of certificate of improvement hereinafter mentioned, the assigns of such claimant, shall, if he or
they shall have been in continuous occupation of
the same land from the date of the record aforesaid,
be entitled to purchase the land so pre-empted at
such rate as may, for the time being, be fixed by 170
the Government of British Columbia, not exceeding^
the sum of ten shillings per acre.
4. No interest in any plot of land acquired asi
aforesaid, shall, before payment of the purchase
money, be capable of passing to a purchaser unless
the vendor shall have obtained a certificate from
the nearest magistrate that he has made permanent
improvements on the said plot to the value of ten
shillings per acre.
5. Upon payment of the purchase money, a conveyance of the land purchased shall be executed in
favour of the purchaser, reserving the precious,
minerals, with a right to enter and work the same
in favour of the Crown, its assigns and licenceesvl
6. Priority of title shall be obtained by the person first in occupation, .who shall first record his
claim in manner aforesaid
7. Any person authorised to acquire land under
the provisions of this Proclamation, may purchase;
in addition to the land pre-empted in manner aforesaid, any number of acres not otherwise appropriated,
at such rate as may be fixed by the Government,
at the time when such land shall come to be surveyed, not to exceed ten shillings per acre; five
shillings to be paid down, and the residue at the
time of survey.
8. In the event of the Crown, its assigns or licen-
cees, availing itself, or themselves, of the reservation
mentioned in clause 5, a reasonable compensation
for the waste and damage done, shall be paid by the. ■mi
person entering and working, to the person whose
land shall be wasted or damaged as aforesaid, and
Ht case of dispute, the same shall be settled by a
jury of six men, to be summoned by the nearest
wQ< Whenever any person shall permanently cease
to occupy land pre-empted as aforesaid, the magistrate
resident nearest to the land in question may in a
summary way, on being satisfied of such permanent
cessation, cancel the claim of the person so permanently ceasing to occupy the same, and record the
elaim thereto of any other person satisfying the requisitions aforesaid
10. The decision of the magistrate may be appealed by either party to the decision of the Judge
of the Supreme Court of Civil Justice of British
11. Any person desirous of appealing in manner
aforesaid, may be required, before such appeal be
heard, to find such security as may be hereafter
pointed out by the rules or orders hereinafter directed to be published.
12. The procedure before the magistrate and
judge respectively, shall be according to such rules
and orders as shall be published by such judge, with
the approbation of the Governor for the time of
British Columbia.
13. Whenever a person in occupation at the time
of record aforesaid, and he, his heirs, or assigns,
shall have continued in permanent occupation of
land pre-empted or of land purchased as aforesaid, \k
I til
'■ 1R
he or they may, save as hereinafter mentioned, bring
ejectment or trespass against any intruder upon the
land so pre-empted or purchased, to the same extent
as if he or they were seised of the legal estate in
possession in the land so pre-empted or purchased.
14. Nothing herein contained shall be construed
as giving a right to anv claimant to exclude free
O O 0 «/
miners from searching for any of the precious
minerals, or working the same upon the conditions
15. The Government shall, notwithstanding any
claim, record, or conveyance aforesaid, be entitled to
enter and take such portion of the land pre-empted
or purchased as may be required for roads or other
public purposes.
16. Water privileges and the right of carrying"'
water for mining purposes, may, notwithstanding
any claim recorded, purchase or conveyance afore^
said, be claimed and taken upon, under or over tae
said land so pre-empted or purchased as aforesaid by
free miners requiring the same, and obtaining a
grant or licence from the gold commissioner, and
paying a compensation for waste or damage to the
person whose land may be wasted or damaged by
such water privilege or carriage of water, to be ascertained in case of dispute in manner aforesaid.
17. In case any dispute shall arise between persons with regard to any land so acquired as aforel;
said, any one of the parties in difference may (before
ejectment or action of trespass brought) refer the
question in difference to the nearest magistrate, who APPENDIX.
is hereby authorized to proceed in a summary way
to restore the possession of any land in dispute to
j^jje person whom he may deem entitled to the
same, and to abate all intrusions, and award and
levy such costs and damages as he may think fit.
AN ACT to provide for the Government of British
Columbia. [2d August, 1858.]
TT7HEREAS divers of her Majesty's subjects and others
• ' have, by the license and consent of her Majesty, resorted
to and settled on certain wild and unoccupied territories on
the north-west coast of North America, commonly known by
the designation of New Caledonia, and from and after the
passing of this Act to be named British Columbia, and tbe
islands adjacent, for mining and other purposes ; and it is
desirable to make some temporary provision for the civil
government of such territories, until permanent settlements
shall be thereupon established, and the number of colonists
increased: Be it therefore enacted by the Queen's most
excellent Majesty, by and with the advice and consent of the
Lords spiritual and temporal, and Commons, in this present
Parliament assembled, and by the authority of the same, as
follows :—
I. British Columbia shall, for the purposes of this Act, be
held to comprise all such territories within the dominions of JP*
her Majesty as are bounded to the south by the frontier of
the United States of America, to the east by the main chain
of the Rocky Mountains, to the north by Simpson's Rimer and
the Finlay branch of the Peace River, and to the west by the-
Pacific Ocean, and shall include Queen Charlotte's Island;
and all other islands adjacent to the said territories, except as
hereinafter excepted.
II. It shall be lawful for her Majesty, by any order or
orders to be by her from time to time made, with the advdde
of her Privy Council, to make, ordain, and establish, and
(subject to such conditions or (restrictions as to her shall seem
meet) to authorize and empower such officer as she may from
time to time appoint as Governor of British Columbia, ta
make provision for the administration of justice therein, and
generally to make, ordain, and establish all such laws, instis
tutions, and ordinances as may be necessary for the peace-
order, and good government of her Majesty's subjects and
others therein ; provided that all such Orders, in Council,
and all laws and ordinances so to be made as aforesaid,
shall be laid before both houses of Parliament as soon.jas-
conveniently may be after the making and enactment thereof
III. Provided always, That it shall be lawful for her
Majesty, so soon as she may 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
Jaws for the peace, order, and good government of BritisH
Columbia, such Legislature to consist of the Governor 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 may;seem expedient.
IV. And whereas an Act was "passed in the forty^-third
year of King George the Third, intituled An Act for extending the jurisdiction of the Courts of Justice in the provinces of
Lower and Upper Canada, to the trial and punishment of j
persons gwtty of crimes and offences within certain parts of
North America adjoimmgtothesaid Provinces} And whereas APPENDIX.
by an Act passed in the second year of King George the
Eourth, intituled An Act for regulating the Fur Trade, and
establishing a Criminal and Civil Jurisdiction within certain-
parts of North America, it was enacted, that from and after
the passing of that Act the Courts of Judicature then existing.
or. which might be thereafter established in the Province of
Upper Canada should have the same civil jurisdiction, power,,
and authority, within the Indian territories and other parts
oSAmerica not within the limits of either of the provinces of
Lower or Upper Canada ot of any civil government of the
United States, as the said Courts had or were invested with
within the limits of the said provinces of Lower or Upper
Canada respectively, and that every contract, agreement,
debt, liability} and demand made, entered into, incurred, or
arising within the said Indian territories and other parts of
America, and every wrong and injury to the person or to
property committed or done within the same, should be and
be deemed to be of the same nature, and be cognizable and be
tried in the same manner, and subject to the same consequences in all respects, as if the same had been made, entered
into, incurred, arisen, committed or done within the said
province of Upper Canada; and in the same Act are contained provisions for giving force, authority, and effect within, the said Indian territories and other parts of America to
the process and acts of the said Courts of Upper Canada;
and it was thereby also enacted, that it should be lawful for
his Majesty, if he should deem it convenient so to do, to issue
a commission or commissions to any person or persons to be
and act as Justices of the Peace within such parts of America
as. aforesaid, as well within any territories theretofore granted
to the company of adventurers of England trading to Hudson's Bay as within the Indian territories of such other parts
of America as aforesaid ; and it was further enacted, that it
should be lawful for his Majesty from time to time by any
commission under the Great Seal to authorize and empower
any such persons so appointed Justices of the Peace as
aforesaid to sit and hold Courts of Record for the trial of
criminal offences and misdemeanours, and also of civil causes, a^e**Ma^a^ajafftf!igMiie'tiBaiBiBggii
and it should be lawful for his Majesty to order, direct and
authorize the appointment of proper officers to act inaidof such
courts and justices within the jurisdiction assigned to such
courts and justices in any such commission ; provided that
such courts should not try any offender upon any charge or
indictment for any felony made the subject of capital punishment, or for any offence or passing sentence affecting the life
of any offender, or adjudge or cause any offender to suffer
capital punishment or transportation, or take cognizance of or
try any civil action or suit in which the cause of such suit or
action should exceed in value the amount or sum of two hundred pounds, and in every case of any offence subjecting the
person committing the same to capital punishment or transportation, the court, or any judge of any such court, or any
justice or justices of the peace before whom any such offender
should be brought, should commit such offender to safe
custody, and cause such offender to be sent in such custody
for trial in the court of the province of Upper Canada.
Erom and after the proclamation of this Act in British
Columbia the said Act of the forty-third year of King George
the Third, and the said recited provisions of the said Act of
the second year of King George the Fourth, and the provisions
contained in such Act for giving force, authority, and effect
within the Indian territories and other parts of America to
the process and acts of the said Courts of Upper Canada,
shall cease to have force in and to be applicable to British, j
V. Provided always, That all judgments given in any civil
suit in British Columbia shall be subject to appeal to her
Majesty in Council, in the manner and subject to the regulations in and subject to which appeals are now brought from
the Civil Courts of Canada, and to such further or other regulations as her Majesty, with the advice of her Privy Council,
shall from time to time appoint.
VI. No part of the colony of Vancov/ver Island as at present established, shall be comprised within British ColumhyS^
for the purpose of this Act; but it shall be lawful for her
Majesty, her heirs and successors,  on receiving at any time APPENDIX.
during the continuance of this Act a joint address from the two
Houses of the Legislature of Vancouver Island, praying for
the incorporation of that Island with British Columbia, by
order to be made as afoi-esaid with the advice of her Privy
Council, to annex the said island to British Columbia, subject
to such conditions and regulations as to her Majesty shall
seem expedient; and thereupon and from the date of the publication of such order in the said Island, or such other date as
may be fixed in such order, the provisions of this Act shall be
held to apply to Vancouver Island.
VII. In the construction of this Act the term " Governor"
shall mean the person for the time being lawfully administering
the government of British Columbia.
" V'JJLI. This Act shall continue in force until the thirty-first
day of December, one thousand eight hundred and sixty-two,
and thenceforth to the end of the then next session of Parliament ; provided always, that the expiration of this Act shall
not affect the boundaries hereby defined, or the right of appeal hereby given, or any act done or right or title acquired
under or by virtue of this Act, nor shall the expiration of this
Act revive the Acts or parts of Acts hereby repealed.
The San Francisco Bulletin of the 4th of June last furnishes a full
vocabulary of the " Chinook Jargon," as used by the different Indian
tribes on Frazer and Thompson Rivers and the surrounding country,
with the equivalent terms in English. It is given in the Appendix as
calculated to he of great use to miners and all parties traversing the
Indian country on the north-west coast, who may have occasion to
come in contact with the natives.
Mesikcr—You (plural).
Tanas man—A boy.
J Chacon-Come.
Alta—At present.
Tenas sun—Morning.
Sitkum sun—Noon.
Kakwa—The same.
w mmtm
Yoolkut— Long.
Hy-you—Pi enty.
Pilton—Fool.    •
Lema—The hand.
Percece—Blanket. <
Musket—A sun.
Kuftan—A horse.
Moos-moos—A cow.
Namox—A dog.
Elushaw—A hog.
Leshawl—A shawl.
Dly Tupso—Hay.
r Lake—Lake.
|  Laehaise—Chair..
Kettle—A pot.
Oskan—A cup.
Lolo—To carry.
Wagh—To spill.
Kapo—A relation.
Nesika— We.
Klapp—To find.
Kull—Toughi hard.
Lapulla—The back.
Sire saplel—Bread. ',
Sagwa— Sugar.
Molass—Molasses., i
Stick shoes—Shoes.
Skin shoes—Mocasius.
Gleece Pire—Candle.
Skullapeen—A rifle.
Skudzo—A squirrel.
Aekik—A fish-hook.
Lehash—An axe.
Opsu—A .knife.
Pillom—A broom.
Lakutchee—Clams* ^2
Lacassett—A trunk.
Tumolitch—A barrel.
Opkan—A basket.,^
Lepla—A plate.
Latuble—A table.
Laqueen—A saw.
Cold lllUie—Winter.
Warm Illihe—Summery
Cold—A year.
Ke waap—A hole.
Klonass—Don't know.
Quass—Eear, afraid. APPENDIX.
[Bow—Listen, attend.
Akaepooit —Needle.
Ikt stick—A yard.
Lesack—A bag.
Newha—How is it? ■
Tanass Klootchman — A
girl. ..
ETanass—A child, and anything small.
Wawa — Language,    to
Mamook Chaco—Bring.
Buck-Muck — Anything
K good to eat.
Pire-Chuck—Ardent  spi-
I rits of any kind.
King George — English,
Scotch, or Irish.
Laplosh — A  shingle  or
I   plank.
Wake rdka'kumtus—I do
| not understand,
pihe—Sandwich Islander,
gyass—Large,   or   very
Till—Heavy, or tired.
Lazy—Slow, or lazy.
ISIammock   Ipsoot — To
[Halluck   Laport — Open
he door.
Ikpooy Laport—Shut the
JQakany—Out of doors,
ffidlight—Sit down, put
I down, or stay.
jHtidwhit—Stand up, get
up, or move.
Sitkum—Middle, or half.
Tenas Poolakly—Sunset,
or dusk.
lockshut — Fight, break,
P injure, &c.
Tikke—Want, desire, &c.
Ikta mika tikke — What
do you want ?
Okaok—This, or that.
Wake ikta nika tikke—I
do not want anything.
Sow wash — Indian, savage.
Ankuty—Long ago.
Lay-lay—A long time.
Konsick—How much.
Makook—Buy or sell.
Kultis—Nothing, or gratis.
Kapitt wawa—Hold your
Kaniteh—Look, to see.
Sockally Tyhee—The Almighty.
Neekwoolly — Deep, beneath.
fcick — Unwell, ill,  sick
Leky — Spotted,  or  piebald.
Olo—Hungry, or thirsty.
Lapushmo — Saddle-blanket.
Chick chick—A wagon, or
Kull-kull stick—Oak.
Laplash stick-Cedar.
Legum stick—Pine.
Keleman Sapel—Flour.
Sale—Cotton, or calico.
Kanim—Canoe, or boat.
Klackan—A fence, a field.
Kalidon—Lead, or shot.
Chickaman—Metals of all
Chickaman. shoes—Horse
Tanass Musket—A pistol.
Moolack or Moos—Elk.
Salmon or   sallo-waek —
Tanass Salmon—Trout.
Lemule ou Hyas kolon—
Man Moos-moos—An ox.
Tanass   Moos-moos — A
Henkerchim — Handkerchief.
Coat—A -woman's gown.
Keekwully coat—A petti- j
coat. I
Keekwully     Sickilox —
I Hachr    ou    House — A
Kata—Why, or what is
the matter ?
Whaah— (Exclamation of
astonishment) Indeed.
Abba—Well then, or, If
that is the case.
Luckwulla—A nut.
Tupso—Grass or straw.
Tootosh. gleece—Butter.
Kquttilt—To collapse,
lass—A k "
Koory kuitan—A racehorse.
Tanass Lakutchee—Mussels.
Koppa — Erom, towards,
Kia Howya — How are
you ? or poor, pitiful.
Appola—A roast of anything.
Quis-quis—A straw mat.
Makook house—A store.
Kateuck — Mid-day, between.
Oloman—An old man, or
worn out.
Lemsei—An old woman.
Hyass Sunday — Christmas day and the 4th of
Pisheck—Bad, exhausted.
Paper—Paper, books, &c.
Zum seeahhoose — Paint
the face.
Pire olally—Ripe berries.
Cold olally—Cranberries.
Piil olally—Strawberries.
Lapiaege — A trap or
Miami—Down the stream,
Machlay — Towards th e
Aalloyma — Another, or
Killame—Return, or capsize.
Lawoolitch—A bottle. 180
Annah—Exclamation of
Sick turn turn — Regret,
Kooy - Kooy — Einger-
Tamanawas —Witchcraft.
Owaykeet—A road.
Tatilum pi ikt—11.
Tatilum pi mox—12.
Tatilnm-tatilum   on Ikt
Locket— 4.
Ikt hyass Takamonak-f
Stowebelow—North.  *
Sun Midlight—W,eBb. |
Com. Lean, R.Nh.    .
J. T. Forster, Esq., R.N
Com. Westbrook, R.N..
Lieut. Barnard, R.N.    .1
Com. Prior, R.N.     .    .
Lieut. Bourchier, R.N.
Com. Saunders, R.N.
Lieut. Hay, R.N.
Lieut. Aldridge, R.N.
E. Evatt, Esq.     .    .
E. A. Smith, Esq., R.N.^ Southampton.
Capt. Stoll, R.N., Plymouth.
Com. Stewart, R.N., Glasgow and Greenock,
Capt. Dyer, R.N., Belfast.
Capt. Keele, R.N., Londonderry.
Com. Ellis. R.N'., Limerick, &c.
Capt. Elerr, R.N., Cork, &c.
London (Office,
|      70, Lower
J Thames Street).
Liverpool (Office,
Stanley Buildgs.,
Bath Street).
A writer in one of the Vancouver Island journals
received by the last mail, justly observes :—
" British Columbia, at the era of her gold dis- APPENDIX.
coveries—and even at the present—differed from
both of those great gold countries. She was nothing
but an interminable wilderness when the gold
excitement commenced in 1858. Around a few of
the wide-spread forts of the Hudson Bay Company
there were a few evidences of agriculture, but the
amount of labour invested annually in agriculture
was merely nominal. The white men and Indians
who lived in the country may, for all practical
purposes, be said to have lived by hunting and the
chase. With the influx of immigrants came also
the demand for supplies of food, aud as nothing but
fish or game could be had, of necessity, with these
exceptions, every article of food, whether necessaries
or luxuries, had to be brought from abroad. The
search for gold has, during the four years past,
occupied industry entirely. Only a few—very few—
persons have engaged in agriculture ; so few, indeed,
that the total value of agricultural produce for 1861
cannot exceed $20,000. We even think that a
high estimate, though the labour invested this
year in agricultural improvements may be much
more. As a set-off to this small gain by agriculture, we may safely assume that this year
$500,000 have been spent for food for men
and animals, and sent abroad, enriching our neighbours. We might with safety increase the estimate;
but this is sufficiently large to show what tribute
British Columbia is paying annually to the agriculturists of the neighbouring States merely for subsistence. It shows what an advantage our mineral
industry is to our neighbours, and what a loss
British Columbia is annually sustaining. Her gold
is taken out of her hills ; is exchanged for food;
the food is consumed ; and yet all that the country
can show for it is the discovery of new gold fields,
the construction of trails, and the possession of a 182
few thousands of miners. These results were unavoidable in a great degree. They may compensate
for the temporary poverty they entail, the drain on
our chief export, gold. But if we pursue a similaar
course year after year, when the cream of our gold
fields is taken away, we will be forced to fall back:
on agriculture as a leading branch of industry, and
at a time when the inducements to engage in it
may not be so attractive to immigrants as at present. It will be long before the infant manufactures of the country will make any perceptible
diminution in the imports. Mines, whether gold,
silver, copper, or coal, and agriculture will, for many
years be the only kinds of productive labour with
which we can maintain our commerce. From these
two branches of industry British Columbia will
have to pay off the annual indebtedness created by
her imports. The exchangeable commodity will be
mineral wealth, and agricultural produce should be
largely consumed in creating that kind of exchange.
Such is evidently her true industrial policy at the
present time. No other policy can create permanent wealth. Fabulously rich gold fields may for
a time build up cities, construct roads, and fill our
ports with shipping and commerce, while dependent
on our neighbours for food. But to be really prosperous, really independent, really powerful and
wealthy, agriculture has to fefed the whole population ; and to feed them, agriculture has to be encouraged and developed as the basis of the high road to
moral and intellectual excellence—to wealth itself.
"The mineral wealth of British Columbia is a
powerful inducement to engage in the cultivation of
the soil. It will attract annually, for many years to
come, thousands of immigrants, all of whom have to
be fed; and, except fed with domestic produce, the
cost of living will be materially increased.   Without
protection enforced by law, the- farmer who settles
on Thompson's River or farther north towards Alexandria, will be protected in his market by the distance which produce will have to be bi'ought to
compete with him. If it is brought from California,
its distance will be from. 1000 to 1500 miles. If
from Oregon, 500 to 800 miles. If from Vancouver Island, 150 to 500 males. The cost of transportation to a shipping point, and the freight on
the route to the place of consumption, are enormous,
a. huge profit of itself, and a better protection to
agricultural industry in British Columbia than a
high protective taiiff levied on purpose. The duty
of ten per cent, levied at New Westminster adds
still more, to the protection, afforded to the farmer.
But the greatest protection of all is the distance
from all foreign farmers. It is useless to urge the
superabundance of produce in the markets of California and Oregosa, and its cheapness. It is imj>os-
sible for them to compete. The expense of transportation is so great, that nothing but the entire
absence of agriculture in central and northern
British Columbia allows an ounce of California
and Oregon produce to reach the mines. The
moment that domestic produce is raised in sufficient
quantities to supply the demand, that moment the
importation of foreign produce will cease.
■- "We estimate that British Columbia has lost
this year $500,000 and over, simply through the
want of agricultural industry. That sum itself
would provide 500 farmers with an annual profit of
$1000 each, which is far greater than miners usually
average. If to such a profit the farmer were to add
the value of his labour expended in improvements
and the increase in the value of his property through
the increase of the population, his profits would be
doubled.    But this is merely farming on a small 184

scale. The opportunity is afforded to farm on a
grand scale to all who have capital, enterprise, and
industry. The prospects of the country warrant
such enterprise. If, however, farmers are so practical that they only wish to invest their labour and
capital on the prospect which the present market
affords, let them look at the current prices of produce in the mines. Davidson's ranch supplies
vegetables at 8 cents per lb. ; hay, 10 cents per lb. ;
barley and oats, 30 cents. If carried into the mines
80 miles, say to the Forks of Quesnelle, vegetables
are worth 25 cents per lb.; barley and oats, 50
cents ; butter, $1.50 ; bacon, 75 cents.. The profit
that can be made at such rates as these promises as
lucky strikes as Lowhee or Antler Creeks."
The. Canadian News of the 10th of April,
1862, announces that "the articles contributed
by Vancouver Island for the Exhibition of 1862,
will be placed to-day on board the schooner Meg
Merrilies, for Barclay Sound, whence they will
be shipped on the Pocahontas, to leave that point
in about six weeks for London. The articles
contributed comprise specimens of minerals, fossils,
produce, timber, Indian manufactures, &c, and,
on the whole, cannot fail in proving a highly
interesting collection and must attract attention.
His Excellency the Governor has appointed the
under-mentioned gentlemen as a Commission to represent the interests of Vancouver Island ,at the
Exhibition:—John Lindley, F.R.S. ; Alfred John
Langley, Esq., member of the Legislative Council in
this colony; and Richard Charles Maguire, Esq.,
Commander Royal Navy. There will be, all told,
about sixteen tons of goods forwarded from this
colony, six tons of which will be of Nanaimo and
Newcastle coal."
THE .END.     London-: Published? 2?y Georye MonZlcdge & CP, Fari'-Utgdorv St.


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