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RETURN To an Address presented to His Honour the Lieutenant-Governer, praying him to cause to be laid… British Columbia. Legislative Assembly 1897

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 60 Vict. Proposed Railway from Coast to Kootenay. 613
To an Address presented to His Honour the Lieutenant-Governor, praying him to
cause to be laid before the House copies of all correspondence between his Government, or any member thereof, and any person or persons, company or companies
in relation to the proposed construction of railways from the cost to the Columbia
River, or to any part of the Kootenay District.
By Command.
Provincial Secretary.
Provincial Secretary's Office,
4th March, 1897.
Victoria, B.C., September 29th, 1896.
Hon. J. II Turner,
Premier and Minister of Finance, Victoria, B. C.
Sir:—In view of the fact that in order to build the most favourable line through Sumas
and the Chilliwhack Valley, being the first instalment of the new line direct to the Kootenay
District, it is necessary to carry out what is known as the Sumas and Chilliwhack reclamation
scheme, I beg to make the following proposition to the Government.
I believe the reclamation scheme to be essentially a sound one on its merits, but I
understand that the difficulty the Government find in giving a guarantee on the bonds proposed to be issued for the construction of the necessary dyke is the uncertainty of being able
to collect the assessments levied by the Dyking Commissioners. I venture to think that if
the collection of these assessments was in the hands of a private Company they would be much
easier to collect, and such a Company would be in a much better position than the Government to enforce the payment of the assessments, in a business way.
I am, therefore, prepared to carry out a scheme on the following or some similar basis : I
will form a Company with a capital of, as a beginning, say, 50,000 pounds. Of this capital I
will call up 10,000 pounds, leaving the balance as reserve liability, to be called up in case of
need. This Company, I propose, shall take over from the Commissioners the bonds issued for
the work and carry out the work themselves, looking to the maintenance of the dykes and the
collection of the assessments. The advantages that this Company would derive would be the
profit between the rate of interest charged on the bonds and the rate of interest they would
have to pay for raising the money, and I suggest that, in order to enable the Company to
raise money at a low rate of interest, the Government should give a guarantee of, say, 3J per
cent on an equivalent amount of the bonds of the Company to that required for the construction of the dykes, and that the Company should deposit with the Government as security for
the guaranteed interest and sinking fund on their bonds the bonds received by them from the
Dyking Commissioners.
Although this proposition is made on the basis of taking the Sumas and Chilliwhack
bonds, I see no reason why the other bonds issued under the " Reclamation Act" should
not be absorbed by my proposed Company. The greater the amount of the bonds dealt with
the greater chance there would be of the Company being a prosperous one, and the greater
would be the advantages reaped by the Province in the introduction of a desirable class of
It is also obvious that from the point of view of the Dominion Government such a
scheme successfully carried out could not be otherwise than profitable, as the new settlers
introduced on to the land would increase the revenue receipts and would probably induce the
Dominion Government to act in a more liberal spirit in the future than has been the case in
the past with regard to the conservancy of the Fraser River. 614 Proposed Railway from Coast to Kootenay. 1897
May I ask for your consideration and the consideration of the Government for this
proposition 1 If you think it is one that you would feel prepared to submit to the House, I
should be pleased to apply for the necessary charter for the incorporation of the Company,
including any necessary alterations in the Dyking and Reclaimation Acts.
I am, etc.
(Signed)        C. H. Wilkinson.
Toronto, October, 14th, 1896.
Sir :—I beg to acknowledge the receipt of your favour of the 10th instant, in reference
to my proposition made to the Premier with regard to the dyking business on the Fraser. I
omitted in this proposition to mention the question of irrigation. I see no reason why the
proposed Company should not take up irrigation bonds in the same way it is proposed they
shall take up the dyking bonds.
I find in Calgary District a great development of irrigation works, and I am told the best
results are being obtained.
Hoping to hear from you with some definite decision of the Government on the matter.
I have, etc.
R. E. Gosnell, Esq., (Signed)        C. H. Wilkinson.
Secretary to the Premier, Victoria, B.C.
People's Railway.
Vancouver, December 2nd., 1896.
Hon. J.  H.   Turner.
Dear Sir :—What chance would capitalists have of obtaining a charter for a railway
from the Coast to Kootenay with the following basis :—
1st. The line to connect with the C. P. R. at Revelstoke (the first station over the
Fraser at Mission), thence to Hope, Princeton, Keremeos, Osoyoos, Midway, Rossland, Trail,
there divide, one branch to Sayward on Fort Shepherd & Nelson line and the other to Robson.
2nd. The Company to have a grant of 20,000 acres of land per mile. The land to be free
from taxes and to be let or sold at Government prices plus value of improvements.
3rd. The Company to have 20% of the profits derived from the mines within the reserve,
provided they give the mines the surface rights free and connect the mine with the railway by
at least a good waggon road.
4th. All fares and freight rates to be annually submitted to and approved by the Provincial Assembly.
5th. On the security of the line and the lands the Government to issue 35 year 3|%
inscribed stock. The Company to take this stock at par and use the revenues from the lands
and line in meeting the charges thereon—any excess to be added to the sinking fund.
6th. At the maturity of the stock all the lands and the line on whose security it has been
raised to become the property of the State. The State, however, to be free to redeem it at
any time by paying a premium of 10%.
7th. All the rights and privileges of the free miners and the royalties, etc., of the Crown
to remain untouched otherwise than as above.
Yours, etc.
(Signed)        T. E. Julian.
P. S.—The enclosed is copy of a letter from Mr. Wolff re State aid in land development.
T. E. J.
You see the plan I propose is exactly the same as that adopted with success in Prussia.
The Development Company takes the place of the owners. Can we get the guarantee this
year? T. E. J.
Reform Club, London, S.W., September 13th, 1896.
Dear Sir :—Replying to yours of the 21st ultimo, I am glad to learn that Mr. Turner is
favourable to the idea, and I shall be happy to frame such a general proposal as I can at a
distance from the scene, and not being a lawyer, much less acquainted with the laws of
British Columbia. 60 Vict. Proposed Railway from Coast to Kootenay. 615
But we ought to know what circumstances we have to deal with. In Prussia it is the
proprietors who not only sell but first find the purchaser. His scheme being approved by the
Governmeet authority, he makes the necessary improvements demanded by the Government
with his own money or on bis own credit. It is then paid by the Government, up to a certain
point, in land bonds, and be arranges with his purchaser for the blalance, taking it either in
money or else entering as a second mortgage, which he is as a rule allowed to replace out of
such of the money for which he receives land bonds as is automatically paid off after a time,
so that he receives a second lot of bonds, or virtually the very same bonds over again, but still
only up to a certain figure.
Now, in British Columbia, I believe what you will want to deal with is Crown land.
That appears to simplify the matter. But it does so only partially. The Government will, in
that case, have to find the money for the improvements. The Government will have to take
the whole risk, without being able to enquire into the trustworthiness of the debtor with the
same ease that a private vendor can. If the Government has first to purchase land in order
to divide it into small holdings there is an additional item of expense and risk. You see
in Prussia the Government has owners to deal with who want to sell, and who come to it to
assist them in selling, because they either could not sell otherwise at all, or they could not
obtain so good a price. The Government can accordingly lay a certain burden upon them ;
lay out some money ; find purchasers ; take some risk. If the Government itself is to sell and
make improvements, it is essential that the settlers should find a holding paying some return
at once—it has to take some security—and if working capital is required the settlers will have
to find it, say, by the creation of a co-operative bank.
Another thing is that in Prussia there are always applicants waiting, only too happy to
take the holdings, so that once an estate is cut up it is fully arranged to cultivate at once.
The Government retains no balances of holdings on its hands.
You see there are a good many tnings to be considered. You do not want to run the
risk of having holdings deserted by new tenants. But if you will explain to me the circumstances, 1 will consider what to suggest.
I hope Mr. Gosnell has acquired a copy of my new book, "People's Banks," for the
Legislative Library. Believe me, etc.,
(Signed)        Henry W. Wolff.
Vancouver, January 14th, 1897.
Hon. J. H. Turner.
Dear Sir,—Herewith I beg to submit extracts of a letter received from England re railway
construction between here and Kootenay.   As I understand it, it contains three distinct offers:—
(1.) In consideration of a right to 20% of the profits from the mines, the rentals from
the lands and guarantee of the bonds, the Syndicate will contract to build the line, develop
and settle 20,000 acres of land per mile, and put in roads and grant free sites to all the mines
within the railway reserve belt. At the end of 30 years, or the maturity of the stock, the
derelict and unsettled lands and the line to become the property of the State.
(2.) In consideration of the Government guarantee of the stock and the rentals of the
land, the Syndicate will contract to build the line, develop and settle 20,000 acres of land per
mile. At the end of 30 years, or maturity of the stock, all derelict and unsettled lands and the
line to become the property of the State.
(3.) In consideration of 20% of the profits from the mines and the rentals from the land
the Syndicate will construct the line, develop and settle 20,000 acres of land per mile, and put
in roads and grant free sites to all the mines in the railway reserved belt. At the end of 30
years all derelict and unsettled land to become the property of the State, but the line to
remain the property of the Syndicate.
I may, without prejudice, say I have submitted the letter to Messrs. Cotton and Williams.
They agree in thinking it more favourable to the Province than any railway proposal that has
yet been brought forward, and consider it should not be made a party measure. Mr. Cotton
suggested the Government would be well advised to make it a Gevernment measure. Of
course they do not pledge either themselves or their party.
I shall esteem it a favour if you will let me know whether you can accede to the request
as stated in Mr. Fox's letter, and waive the time limit for advertising in the Gazette.
Yours, etc.,
(Signed)        T. E. Julian. 616 Proposed Railway from Coast to Kootenay. 1897
14, Deans Yard, Westminster, 22nd December, 1896.
T. E. Julian, Esq., Vancouver.
My Dear Sir :—I am obliged for your letter of December 1st respecting the proposed
railway from Vancouver to Rossland and to Robson.
Since its receipt I have had interviews with one or two influencial financial men in the
city respecting the contents of your letter, and I may at once say that we can organize an
approved syndicate with a preliminary capital of £1,000 for the purpose of securing the
charter of the proposed railway, and the said syndicate would be in a position to find a further
sum of ,£5,000 to £6,000 for the purpose of making the necessary survey after the charter was
secured, and would also undertake to place or finance the necessary capital for the construction of the said railway provided you can obtain letters from Mr. Turner as representative of
the party now in office, and from some leader representing the party out of office, stating they
would support in Parliament a bill granting to the proposed Company the right to receive
20% of all the profits from the mines on the reserved lands to be set aside from the railway
grant, as specified in your letter, or a bill authorising the Government to guarantee 3J% on
inscribed stock issued for 30 years, the said stock to be accepted at par by the Company, and
to be for an amount sufficient to cover the construction of the railway.
The London group above referred to would, of course, agree to provide for the wishes
and views of all the representative men of both parties as far as is possible.
The gauge of railway should, we think, be the same as that of the Canadian Pacific Railway, as this would probably facilitate the subsequent negotiation for running powers over the
Canadian Pacific Railway near Vancouver.
Awaiting your cablegram, I am, etc.,
(Signed)        Francis Wm. Fox.
Terms of the Proposed Charter or Contract as  Per Letter of December 1st,  1896.
(1.) The line to be built by a Public Company.
(2.) The Government pay therefor by 30 years' Inscribed Stock at 3Jr%. Such stock to
be received by the Company at par.
(3.) For 30 years 20,000 acres per mile may be reserved to the Company, and by it to be
sold, or let on perpetual leases at Government rates, plus value of any improvements, but all
land not settled within this period to revert to the Crown without compensation. Till settled
the land to be free from taxation.
(4.) That the Company obtain \ interest in all the profits from the mines within the grant,
subject, however, to its giving the surface rights free, and at least puts in a waggon road to
the mine, connecting it to the railway.
(5.) At the maturity of the stock the line and lands on which it has been raised shall
become the property of the State (see clause 3).
(6.) The State shall be free to redeem the stock at any time by paying a premium of
(7.) All rates, etc., to be yearly submitted to and approved by the Provincial Assembly.
Transmitted to the Hon. the Minister of Finance.
53, New Broad Street, London, December 7th, 1896.
Dear Mr. Beeton:—My time has been so taken up since I saw you a week ago, that I
have found it impossible to tackle the question of that most important undertaking, the
" People's Railway," until this evening. I have, however, had the advantage of seeing the
mail which came to-day in a lump, including papers which are dated as long since as a month
ago, and letters of the 11th ulto., all delayed by land slides, I believe, on the trans-continental
In discussing this question, I am of course in the dark as to cost of construction between
the point on the west of Hope to the eastern terminus, which I consider should be the assumed
terminus of the Crow's Nest Pass Railway, and I feel strongly that, for political reasons if for 60 Vict. Proposed Railway from Coast to Kootenay. 617
no other, an attempt should be made to induce the promoters of that line to throw in with us,
instead of with the 0. P. R. In this case at any rate, the politicians are right, as the healthy
competition of two railways is almost essential to the well-being of the Province, and I venture
also to say, paradox as it may seem, of the railways as well. I believe in healthy competition
in every way.
Because of my having no survey of the route and therefore no estimate, I must go by
rule of thum in estimating cost. However, I have talked the matter over with Bell, C.E.
Hamlin, Woods, and Hill, of Westminster, and others who have given me information on the
subject, and of course I know the cost of the line north and west of New Westminster, and
from that city to the east of Chilliwhack, so I don't think my estimate will be far out; I shall
probably be more out in the distances.
For the purpose of this letter I take 350 miles as the probable length. Of this I reckon
that not much more than 50 miles will be really bad work.
The cost of this bad work I should put down at $100,000 per m $ 5,000,000
I believe the rest can be done at $20,000      6,000,000
Total   $11,000,000
Say £2,200,000
The first question is, is this a liberal enough estimate;   the second, how can the mone
be raised ; and third, what chance is there of the line earning the interest for its bonded debt
The estimate I believe is about right, but if it is not, I should feel inclined to make the
distance 50 miles greater, taking this 50 miles at $10,000 per mile, say, $500,000. I think
this will fill the bill in any case ; as the estimate gives 70 miles of line over and above the
direct line; and a great, I believe, excessive length of bad work. However, to be safe, add
the extra $500,000, and put the total at $11,500,000—£2,300,000.
If the Province will guarantee interest at 3|%, I will build the line for bonds, and if
necessary I will arrange to postpone the payment of interest, for say three years, on the equivalent being added to capital. This would involve an annual charge of £80,500—$425,000,
surely a small risk for so great a boon. It seems almost certain that the Dominion Government would give the orthodox $3,200 per mile, perhaps even more, and this may be put down
at 320 miles (without the B. I. and F. V. Ry. and the Steveston, say, $1,024,000), or nearly
enough to pay the bonded interest for the first three or in case of the reduction of the $2,000,-
000 mentioned below, the first four years.
As to the earning probabilities of the line, I can't, and I don't believe anyone in the
Province anticipates, that when once the line is properly running it can fail to earn its expenses
including interest on bonds. Let us see what is required for this purpose per mile per week :
$380,000, 350 miles, roughly $1,100 per mile per annum, or $21 per mile per week; again
roughly, the English railways earn on an average about £40—$200 per mile per week, and I
should say over the whole, the Canadian do much more than $21, at any rate, a very conservative estimate gave the Burrard Inlet and Fraser Valley line, without any Kootenay
extension, $40 per mile per week. I am certain the line must pay, but we want thoroughly
to protect the Province, and I think over and above this we ought to give it some part of the
profits, because as the Province guarantees the bonds, it should participate in the surplus.
Moreover, I think that members of the Provincial and Dominion Legislature and members of the corporations of the four cities should be allowed to travel free during the time they
serve as such.    I therefore suggest that one-fourth of the surplus profits over and above—
(a.) The cost of working:
(b.) The payment of interest on bonded debt should belong to the Province to be used as
follows :—
I propose that the bonds shall be permanent and irredeemable except by purchase in open
market, as mentioned below, and inscribed in London.    They will sell well in this way.
That any surplus due to the Province shall go first in buying and extinguishing bonds
that can be bought in the open market at or under the price of 110%, and that when bonds
cannot be bought at that price, the surplus shall be used in building extensions and branches.
I propose that a land grant of 20,000 acres per mile of line shall be made, and that such
land shall be sold from time to time, the proceeds to be used in the same way as the one-
fourth surplus profits.    All townsites shall be granted and realised in the same way.
Such a land grant will, 1 believe, if properly administered, fully provide for the debenture
interest until the traffic suffices for that  purpose, and will  eventually either result  in  extin- 618 Proposed Railway from Coast to Kootenay. 1897
guishing the bonded debt or supplying the Province with such a network of railways as no
other Colony can boast, and equal to the magnificent system in India.
I would suggest here as an alternative, that instead of selling land or town plots, the best
possible facilities should be given to settlers to take up land, and proposing residents to take
up town plots, the railway company, which is a semi-state undertaking, and working partly for
its shareholders and partly for the Province, retaining the fee simple in the land on its own
hands subject to liberal and equitable arrangements with its tenants. Such an arrangement
would prevent the pernicious system of speculation in land, and gambling in real estate which
always has and always will result in loss to individuals, and great damage to the development
of any colony; such a system will lead to the very rapid settlement of all the good lands
I should propose that the two Island Cities be put on a level as to rates and fares for
through bookings with Westminster and Vancouver, in exchange for bonusing and maintaining the ferry boats necessary for the service.    I can't see how they can fairly ask more.
The best earning sections of this line will be what are now known as the B. I. and F.
Valley, and the Steveston and New Westminster section of the Victoria, Vancouver
and New Westminster Railways. Powers are not only in existence for these lines,
but an application has been made, and looks very like being granted, for a guarantee
on the bonus by the Dominion Government. I believe the " People's Railway " will
find it greatly to its interest to undertake to work these sections at 50% of the gross receipts,
and such an arrangement would probably result in securing the Domining guarantee, thus
relieving the Province to the extent of, approximately, $2,000,000, say, £400,000, leaving the
total at £1,900,000 and the interest £66,500 per annum.
I forgot to say above that although the Island Cities would get the advantage of an equal
through-rate with the Mainland, that the car works and engineering shops would naturally go
to Vancouver and New Westminster, as they could not, with due regard to convenience, be
operated over the water     This argument will help to satisfy the Mainland interests.
Now, as to management. I propose that the Province shall be represented by two permanent officials to be appointed by the Government, and paid by the Company a salary of
$5,000 per annum each, and to be called "Government Directors of Railways." They shall
give all their time to the business and be irremovable except for misconduct, incompetency, or
some other valid business reason, at decision of Company, They shall, in case of breaking
down in health, or old age, be entitled to a pension to be agreed on between the Government and
the Company, when the appointment is made; the pensions to be based on length of service.
It is unnecessary to point out the enormous importance of this line to the Province. The
difference between it and the British Pacific is that it taps at existing traffic, whereas the B.
P. sought to create one, it serves an industry already created, growing rapidly and most
vigorously, whereas the B. P. would have had to create it. Its connections to the east are
virtually made, and its traffic will be sought for by no less than three transcontinental lines,
whereas the B. P. had none.
I recommend the matter to your careful consideration.
I am, etc.,
H. C. Beeton, Esq. (Signed)        C. H. Wilkinson.
Vancouver, August 26th, 1896.
Hon. James Baker, Provincial Secretary,  Victoria, B. C.
Sir :—I have the honour to direct your attention to the enclosed resolution, passed by
the Council of the City of Vancouver, on Monday, August 24th, 1896, in relation to the construction of a railroad from Vancouver to Kootenay, and would ask that you kindly give the
matter your favourable consideration. I have, etc.,
(Signed)        Thos. F. McGuigan.
(Receipt acknowledged, 29th Aug., 1896.) City Clerk.
Resolution of the Council of the City of Vancouver, passed the 24th day of August, 1896,
Having carefully considered the route of the proposed Vancouver, Victoria and Eastern
Railway and Navigation Company, and being fully aware of the great benefit the said railway will be to the people of this city,-in giving them direct communication with a trade that
is already established in the great mining districts of Similkameen, Rock Creek, Kettle River, 60 Vict. Proposed Railway from Coast to Kootenay. 619
Boundary Creek, and Kootenay, a trade which is now one of the greatest in Canada, and will
increase every year as the mines are developed and the country is opened up.
Under the present conditions the merchants of this city cannot compete with the
merchants of Spokane, owing to the lack of direct railway communication, consequently this
trade is lost to Canada, and is monopolised by the people of the United States.
Be it therefore resolved, that we fully approve of the construction of the said railway,
and respectfully ask that charter be granted, and every encouragement possible be given to
the said Company, so that the said road may be built at the earliest possible date.
That a copy of this resolution be sent to our representatives in the Dominion and
Provincial Parliaments, requesting them to assist in having the wishes of the petitioners
carried out.
City Clerk's Office,   Victoria, B. O, November 4th, 1896.
To the Deputy Provincial Secretary,  Victoria B. C.
Sir :—I   have   the   honour to  transmit  herewith  a copy of   a resolution relating to
proposed railway from  the  coast  to  the  Kootenay country, the  construction of which it is
therein desired should be undertaken as a public work by the Provincial Government.
I have, etc.,
(Signed)        W. J.  Dowler, C. M. C.
(Receipt acknowledged 9th November, 1896.)
Copy of a  Resolution passed by  the  Municipal  Council cf the  Corporation of the City of
Victoria, at a meeting held on the 2nd November, 1896.
" Resolved—That a memorial be presented by the Council to the Provincial Government
urging the immediate undertaking, as a public work by the Government, of a railway from the
Coast to the mining districts of the Slocan and Kootenay. The road when completed to
remain public property, and to be operated by the Government or by a Company leasing from
the Government on such conditions as shall fully protect the public interest."
(Signed)        W. J. Dowler, C. M. C.
Vancouver Board of Trade,
Vancouver, B. O, 7th November, 1896.
A. Campbell Reddie, Esq., Deputy Provincial Secretary,  Victoria, B   C
Sir :—I beg to enclose copy of resolution re Kootenay railway connection with Pacific
Coast of special committee which met this a. m. in Vancouver, and at same time beg respectfully to ask your Government at what date it would be convenient to receive a deputation
from the joint Board of Trades' Committee of Victoria, New Westminster and Vancouver in
regard to the above important question.
I have, etc.,
(Signed) Wm.  Skene,
Acting Secy, to Joint Committee pro tern.
(Receipt acknowledged 11th Nov., 1896.)
Copy of Resolution adopted at a meeting of delegates from the Board of Trade of Victoria,
New Westminster and Nanaimo, held in Vancouver, Saturday, 7th November, 1896, viz.:—
" Having carfully considered the necessity of constructing a line of railway from the
Coast into the district of Kootenay, and thereby bringing the great mining trade of the
southern part of B. C. to the Coast cities by the shortest possible route;
" Be it therefore resolved that the Provincial and Dominion Governments be asked to
grant a charter and assist any properly organised scheme for an independent line of railway
from the Pacific Coast to the Columbia River, and that they will do everything possible so
that such line may be constructed at the earliest possible moment.
" Further, that a copy of this resolution be sent to the respective Governments."
(Signed)        Wm. Skene, Secretary.
To A. Campbell Reddie, Esq.,
Deputy Provincial Secretary,  Victoria, B. C. 620 Proposed Railway from Coast to Kootenay. 1897
Moved by Alderman McGregor, seconded by Alderman McCandless, that—
Whereas it has been proved that immense deposits of gold, silver and other materials
exist and are being profitably worked in the Kootenays, the Boundary Creek and Similkameen
River portions of the Province, as well as there being a great deal of first-class agricultural
and grazing lands, much of which is occupied by farmers :
And whereas there are tens of thousands of miners now employed in the getting of ores
from the parts herein named :
And whereas the present means of transportation are not commensurate with the
requirements of this large mining population, nor even convenient in the general transaction of
business, thereby retarding to a great extent the development which would otherwise take place :
And whereas it has been demonstrated by a competent engineer, who has closely
examined the proposed route, with the object of constructing a shorter line of railway via
Hope, Similkameen, Kettle River and Grand Forks, so as to reach the mining centres of
Kootenay, and has pronounced it quite feasible :
And whereas, in the best interests of these industries, and those who follow them, it is
absolutely necessary that a line of railway should be built at the earliest possible moment to
connect Kootenay by way of Boundary Creek country and Hope with the Coast cities :
Therefore, be it resolved, that this meeting emphatically urge on both the Dominion and
Provincial Governments that substantial aid should be given to the " Vancouver, Victoria,
Eastern Railway and Navigation Company," to enable the Company to proceed at once with
the work herein set forth, and that a copy of this resolution, signed by the Mayor and Chairman, and by the Secretary, be forwarded to the Dominion and Local Governments, as well as
to each member representing this City and District in both the House of Commons and Local
Carried Unanimously. (Signed) Chas,   E.  Redfern,  Mayor.
James Henderson Falconer, Secretary. January 27th, 1897.
T. E. Julian, Architect, Vancouver. Victoria, 28th January, 1897.
Dear Sir :—With reference to your communication received by me some time ago, in
which you outline a scheme for the construction of a People's Railway, connecting with a
point on the C. P. R., I beg to say that the matter has had the consideration of the Government in connection with a general railway policy which is being formulated by the Executive,
and whatever steps are taken looking to the construction of the line in question, or whatever
assistance is granted, will come under and be governed by the general conditions which the
Government will lay down.
All the details of the railway policy referred to have not yet been decided upon, but I
trust will be before the meeting of the House.
I am, etc.,
(Signed)        J. H. Turner, Minister of Finance.
Hon. J. H. Turner. Vancouver, B. 0., 12th February, 1897.
Dear Sir :—In your favour of the 28th January re Railways, will have to conform to
the general conditions of the railway policy to be inaugurated during the coming session. As
far as the London Syndicate is concerned it will suit its purpose to be contractors, as it were,
under the Government, on the terms of our letter, quite as well as to have an independent
charter. We find Mr. Maxwell, M.P., and Dr. Milne, are at Ottawa, and we understand are
trying to get the usual Dominion grant in favour of their scheme. In the case of the London
Syndicate this grant, one million, or more if the bonds were guaranteed, would, of course, go
through to the Provincial Treasury, and be available for any purpose which circumstances
might from time to time determine. If, under these conditions, the Government can give any
assurance that the offer of the Syndicate would be entertained a letter to that effect will oblige.
From a letter just received we conclude that Mr. Vernon can give you full and explicit
particulars as to the bona fides of the Syndicate.
We are, etc.,
(Signed)        T. E. Julian & Co.
Printed by Richard WoIiFKNdkn, Printer lo the Queen's Most Excellent Majesty.


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