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PAPERS Relating to the removal of the Songhees Indians from the Reserve on the west side of Victoria… British Columbia. Legislative Assembly 1890

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 53 Vic. Removal of Indians from Songhees Reserve. 753
PAPERS
Relating to the removal of the Songhees Indians from the Reserve on the west side of
Victoria Harbour to some more suitable locality.
By Command.
JNO. ROBSON,
Provincial Secretary.
Provincial Secretary's Office,
July, 1890.
The Under Secretary of State to the Lieutenant-Governor.
Ottawa, 10th June, 1890.
Sie,—Adverting to your despatch of the 25th April last, on the subject of the removal of
the tribe of Indians known as the Songish, or Songhees, Tribe from the reserve situated on the
west side of Victoria Harbour to some more suitable locality, I have now the honour to
transmit to you herewith, for the information of your Government, copy of an approved Report
of a Committee of the Honourable the Privy Council bearing on the question.
I have, &c,
(Signed)        L. A. Catelliee,
Under Secretary of State.
Certified Copy of a Report of a Committee of the Honourable the Privy Council, approved
by His Excellency the Governor-General in Council on the Sth June, 1890.
The Committee of the Privy Council have had under consideration a despatch, dated 25th
April, 1890, from His Honour the Lieutenant-Governor of British Columbia, transmitting a
copy of a Report of his Executive Council, embodying a resolution of the Legislative Assembly
of that Province on the subject of the removal of the tribe of Indians known as the Songhees
Tribe from the reserve situated on the west side of Victoria Harbour to some more suitable
locality.
The Superintendent-General of Indian Affairs, to whom the matter was referred, states
that on several occasions endeavours were made to arrange for the removal of the Indians
above referred to from the reserve in question, but it has hitherto failed to induce them to
accept of a location elsewhere. The last attempt to induce them to remove was made in April
of this year by the Indian Superintendent for British Columbia, who was instructed to confer
with the Indians in the matter. He has reported that he held a meeting of the Indians and
explained fully to them the situation, and that they declined to accept the proposition and were
to a man determined not to vacate the Songhees Reserve, as the same had been held and occupied by their forefathers from time immemorial, and, consequently, was dearer to them than
any other land they could possess. The Indians reminded the Superintendent that they had
repeatedly declined to remove, notwithstanding the advice so frequently given them to do so
by the Government officers, and stated that they were much grieved and disquieted by being 754 Removal of Indians from Songhees Reserve. 1890
asked so frequently to leave their reserve. The Superintendent informed them that it was not
contemplated to use any coercive measures to facilitate their removal, and that it was for them
to consider whether they would be benefitted by the change proposed, which, he remarked, it
would be in their interest to accept. The Superintendent adds that the Indians went away
evidently quite satisfied with his assurance, but still adhering to their oft-repeated decision
that they would not vacate the reserve in question.
The Committee advise that the Secretary of State be authorized to transmit a copy of this
minute to the Lieutenant-Governor of British Columbia, in answer to his despatch of the 25th
April last.
All which is respectfully submitted.
(Signed)        John J. McGee,
Clerk Privy Council.
VICTOEIA, B. C. :
Printed by Richard Wolfenden, Printer to the Queen's Most Excellent Majesty.

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