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of :% 

tt of 

Alexander Begg 


JloJ*. ~ 






C.C., F.R.C.I. 





Entered, according to the Act of the Parliament of Canada, in the year one thousand eight 
hundred and ninety-four, by ALEXANDER BEGG, C.C., Victoria, B.C., at the Department of 
Agriculture, Ottawa. 


IT HAS BEEN REMARKED that "a man may be ignorant of the laws 
of his country, but with ordinary intelligence he is not excusable, if 
he be unacquainted with its history." This remark should only be 
.applied to those who have the means of becoming well informed, and 
neglect to avail themselves of opportunities within their reach. 

HISTORICALLY, British Columbia has, hitherto, had comparatively 
an unwritten record. It is true, that within the last thirty years, 
many pamphlets and books respecting the Province have been written, 
but they were principally confined to climatic, geographical and 
descriptive matters ; hence the present effort of the Author to search 
for, gather, and compile, from such sources as were available, as full 
And complete a record as possible of this interesting portion of the 
Dominion. The result is this work now placed before the public, in 
the hope that it may interest and benefit the reading community. 

The "modern history" relating to the recent official visit of the 
-Governor-General to British Columbia, is given at some length, as it 
refers to many provincial topics of importance, and gives evidence of 
the continued loyal feeling of the people of the Province to Queen 
Victoria and the British throne. 

The lamented death of the Premier of Canada, at Windsor Castle, 
12th December, 1894, is noted. Hon. Mackenzie Bowell, Minister 
-of Trade and Commerce, favorably known in British Columbia, re 
Australian Trade and the Pacific Cable, at the request of Lord 
Aberdeen, accepted the Premiership. 

A new historical feature, namely, THE APPENDIX MAP, showing the 
line of the Canadian Pacific Railway across the continent, also the 


routes used by the brigades of the early, fur-traders, from the Pacific 
coast and New Caledonia to Hudson Bay and Montreal, will be found 
useful and instructive. 

The thanks of the author are due to not a few in the city of 
Victoria who have assisted in supplying material for this history ; 
especially the Deputy Provincial Secretary for affording access to the 
provincial records and archives ; to the Provincial Auditor and the 
Assistant Auditor for the warm interest they manifested in the early 
progress of the work. 


December, 1894. 


Page 122 For " 1847," read " 1860." 
u 124 it "March," read "June." 
ii 131 .. "1832," read "1830." 

,, 167 Instead of "travelled along with the annual express," read " followed the Koofcenav 
Pass through the Rockies." 

,, 176 Read " Dr. McLoughlin retired from the service in 1846." 

u 177 Instead of "Chief Factor John Lees," read "John Lee Lewis." 

ii 178 Read ".Mr. Anderson married Miss Birnie in 1836." 

u 183 ii "Chief named Tranquille," instead of "Wanquille." 

u 201 ii "Chief Justice Cameron was succeeded by Mr. Needham in 1865, who, in 1870, 
was transferred, etc. 

it 202 In obituary notice (tenth line from bottom), instead of "Judge of the Court of the 
Colony of Vancouver Island," read "Colony of British Columbia"; and instead of 
"simultaneously, &c.," note that Mr. Begbie was created Chief Justice of the 
Mainland of British Columbia by " An Ordinance to regulate the Supreme Courts 
of Justice," passed 1st March, 1869, which also denned the title of the Chief Justice 
of Vancouver Island then held by Mr. Needham. That Ordinance provided 
that, upon a vacancy of the office of either of the then Chief Justices, the two 
Supreme Courts should be merged into one, the remaining Chief Justice to preside 
over it, to be known as the Chief Justice of British Columbia. The resignation of 
Chief Justice Needham created a vacancy, which was filled by Chief Justice Begbie, 
under an Ordinance passed 22nd April, 1870, when both Supreme Courts were 
united, under the Chief Justiceship of Sir Matthew B. Begbie. 

n 203 For "Carej 7 ," read "Gary." 

,, 207 For " Joseph Yates," read " James Yates." 

u u u "Yates and Skinner," read "Skinner, No. 2," and "Yates, No. 4." 

,, 233 u " two officers, one Staff Assistant Surgeon, and eighteen non-commissioned officers 
and men," read " three officers, one Staff Assistant Surgeon, and one hundred and 
eighteen non-commissioned officers and men." 

ii 245 M " Sankster," read "Sangster"; also in page 246. 

u 248 M "A. J. Dallas," read "A. Grant Dallas." 

ii 373 u "Bouce, Henry," read "Bruce, Henry." 

,, ,, M "Medure, John," read "Maclure, John." 

,, ,, i, "June, John," read " Jane, John." 

H M u " Simple, Robert," read " Semple, Robert." 

,. 386 i, " Philip Hawkin," read "Philip J. Hankin." 

u 388 u " Edward Howard Saunders," read "Edward Howard Sanders." 

n u After "Montague Tyrwhitt Drake," insert "John Sebastian Helmcken." 

ii u Omit the word "Hon." before "John Robson." 

n 393 For " Bernard," read " Carroll." 

406 "William Smith," read " William Smithe." 

,, 407 n "Mr. Reed," read "Mr. James Reid." 

n 443 n " Alex. Graham," read " James Allan Grahame." 

it 444 Omit the word " Chief" before " Commissioner." 

u 447 For "George C. Turnstall," read "George C. Tunstall." 

H H n " T. Fannin," read " J. Fannin." 

n 449 n "Captain John Irvine," read "Captain John Irving." 

it 466 After " Mr. Cridge " (third line from top), read " now Bishop Cridge " ; for 1^3 aw " (line 

11), read "Burr." 

n 469 For "Miss Vieuseaux," read "Mrs. Vieuseaux." 
n 470 ,, " Robert C. Carey," read " Herbert C. Carey." 
u 473 Read "the number, &c., equals the demand." 
H 474 After " Hector M. Stramberg," read " B. A." 
n n In last line, for " High Schools," read ^ Public Schools." 
n 475 In fourth line from top, read "monthly" instead of "quarterly." 
n 494 For "Rev. T. P. Jenns," read "Rev. P. Jenns." 
n 495 i, " H. C. Tiedman," read "H. O. Tiedemann." 
it 497 Third line from top, for " Owen Sound," read " Collingwood." 
" 499 Second line from top, after "held," read "their first meeting in St. Andrew's Church, 

Vancouver; their second meeting," &c., "and their third in Knox Church, 

Calgary, May 2nd, 1894." 

,i 536 Read " Hon. J. H. Turner and Mrs. Turner." 
n 546 Instead of " John," read " Alexander" Rocke Robertson. 




1-A continuous history. 2-Arranged in chronological periods. 
3-The pre-historic period. Early navigators. Captain Cook 
(1778). 4-The fur-trading period. 5-Francis Drake. 6- 
The first arrival at Nootka. 7-The second British navigator. 
8-Captain John Meares (1788). 9-The great navigator, Cap- 
tain George Vancouver (1792-3-4). 10-Alexander Mackenzie 
(1793). 11-The North- West Company and New Caledonia 
(1808). 12-Union of the companies (1821). 13-Lease of 
Alaska (1839). 14-Fort Camosun selected (1842). 15-Fort 
Victoria erected (1843). 16-First officer in charge (1844). 
17-Gold discovered (1848). 18-The colonial period (1849). 
19- Colonization, settlement and representative govern- 
ment (1856). 20- A second crown colony (1858). 21-British 
Columbia. 22-Its boundaries defined (1858 and 1863). 23- 
Governor Douglas knighted (1863). Succeeded by Captain 
Kennedy (1864). 24-Union of the Colonies (1866). Frederick 
Seymour (1864-66, 1869). 25-The Royal City (1859). 26- Vic- 
toria surveyed. Its boundaries (1852). 27, 28, 29-The beau- 
ties of Victoria (1862). 30-Other beautiful scenery New 
Westminster. 31-Nanaimo Its spacious bay. 32- Vancouver 
City. 33-Kamloops. 34- The last of the colonial governors 
Anthony. Musgrave (1869-71)- 35- What comes afterwards? 
The Confederation period (1871-94) 7-15 


OHAPTER I. Captain Cook's third voyage His commission and 
instructions Reward of 20,000 Reached Nootka, 1778 ' 
Indian village and surly chiefs Captain Cook leaves 
Nootka On the northward voyage finds a different type 
of natives The North-West passage improbable Among 
the walruses Returns south along the coast of Russia to 
the Sandwich Islands Death of Captain Cook Captain 
Clerke returns north His death Captain Gore succeeds to 
the command of the expedition Lieutenant King becomes 
captain of the Discovery The expedition reaches England, 
having lost both commanders 17-24 


OHAPTER I. Expeditions organized Pioneer trader Hanna 
reaches Nootka, 1785 British navigators : Scott, Meares, 
Portlock, Dixon Barclay, accompanied by Mrs. Barclay 
Two British vessels arrive under command of Captain 
Strange, 1786 United States flag and traders Gray and 
Kendrick, 1788 Meares at Friendly Cove, 1788 John Me- 


Kay remains at Nootka Maquilla and Callicum Their fleet 
Indian music Presents and building site House building 
Fortification Friendly natives !Sad end of Callicum 
Inhuman conduct of a Spanish officer. ..... 25-31 

CHAPTER II. Memorial from Captain Meares Seizures by the 
Spaniards Launch of the North-West A merica Message 
from King George III. to the House of Commons Approved 
by the House of Lords. 32-41 

CHAPTER III. The Spanish reply Extravagant claims Special 
Pleading Reply by the British ambassador Spain and 
France combine against Britain Preparations for war 
Family compact Fitz Herbert's proposals accepted. . . 42-5O 

CHAPTER IV. Captain Vancouver's appointment Officers under 
his command The ships leave the Thames, taking the 
route via Cape of Good Hope Call at the Sandwich Islands 
Reach Straits of Fuca, April, 1792 Explorations commenced 
at Puget Sound Meet Spanish vessels Circumnavigate the 
large island (now Vancouver Island) Reception at Nootka, 
August, 1792 The Spanish question discussed by Quadra 
and Vancouver Death of Quadra. ..... 50-54 

CHAPTER V. Important state papers Fresh evidence Com- 
missioners appointed to assess damages sustained by Cap- 
tain Meares Withdrawal of the Spanish fleet Kendrick 
attempts to secure large tracts of land Surveys of 1793 
Fur trade along the coast Winter at Sandwich Islands. . 55-59 

CHAPTER VI. Mackenzie's overland journey to the Pacific His 
qualifications and enterprise The westward route Alex- 
ander McKay Head-waters of Peace River He reaches a 
river flowing southerly Supposes it to be the river 
Columbia Alarming intelligence Mutiny threatened They 
leave their boat and proceed on foot 60-68- 

CHAPTER VII. Mackenzie's trouble with guides He shaves his 
beard Hugging and hospitality Reaches the Pacific shore 
Inscription on the rock Dr. Sandford Fleming's opinion 
Mackenzie knighted Later particulars from Dr. Masson, 
of Edinburgh. 69-81 

CHAPTER VIII. Vancouver's explorations continued His 
voyage and surveys north The Nootka difficulty settled 
The British flag unfurled at Nootka over the land restored 
The sea-otter trade Great profits Trouble with the 
Indians Their tactics Capture of the Boston Jewett's ac- 
count Another attack Russian project Astoria founded 
on the Columbia River, 1810 The Tonquin Alexander 
Mackay Intoxicating liquor. ...... 81-91 

CHAPTER IX. Explorations and fur-trading on the mainland 
Simon Eraser's great exploit His journal Reaches the 
great river in 1806 Supplies arrive, 1807 Preparations com- 
pleted, 1808 Fraser's journal Cascades, canyons and whirl- 
pools Thompson River Jackass Mountain Spuzzum. . 92-95- 



CHAPTER X. David Thompson, the astronomer .Joins the 
North- West Company Crosses the Rockies at Bow River 
Pass in 1800 Howe's Pass in 1807 Kootenay, 1809 Mouth 
of Columbia, 1811 Fort Kamloops Simon Eraser's retire- 
ment Sandford Fleming's reference to David Thompson 
North-West Company Original partners Plan of operations 
Great success in 1783 The X. Y. Company Long credit 
Founders of the fur trade Business in 1798 Guides, 
equipment, canoes and crews The early traders deserve credit 95- 104 

CHAPTER XI. Operations on the Columbia River Establishment 
of Astoria The new administration Alexander Henry Ross 
Cox Donald MacTavish Flathead Indians Alexander 
Ross, a passenger on the Tonqnin Gabriel Franchere's nar- 
rative The war sloop Racoon Cause of the war The rivalry 
which existed Brought before Parliament Reconciliation . 105-110 

CHAPTER XII. Union of the North- West Company and the 
Hudson Bay Company Charter of H. B. Co., 1670 The 
new Governor, Sir George Simpson Explorations and geo- 
graphical discoveries Division of departments Classification 
of officers Growth of H. B. Co. from 1789 to 1856. . . 111-114 

CHAPTER XIII. Native tribes and civilization Indian popula- 
tion in 1852 and 1892 Educational grants to industrial 
schools Superintendent's report Deserted villages. . . 115-119 

CHAPTER XIV. Primitive Indian regulations The systems con- 
trasted Wars and massacres Policy of the British fur com- 
panies Servants held responsible "Daughters of the Land " 
Half-breed women and children in 1817. . . 119-121 

CHAPTER XV. Fort Vancouver An extensive concern A well- 
managed farm Walla Walla Annual accounts made up at 
Fort Colville Annual expeditions Convention of 1818 
Supplementary license The Alaska boundary impracticable 
Trade with Russia and the interior of New Caledonia No 
money required Equivalents in 1733 and a hundred years 
later Evidence before the House of Commons in 1857 Death 
of Dr. J. Rae, the explorer. . . 122-128 

CHAPTER XVI. Sundry expeditions Kamloops and Fort Lang- 
ley Sir George Simpson at Fort St. James, 18213 Stuart 
Lake James Douglas From the Atlantic to the Pacific 
The route and time occupied A former journey mentioned 
David Douglas The Douglas fir Robert Campbell Dr. 
Dawson Early experience of James Douglas (afterwards Sir 
James) His experience in New Caledonia Fort Connolly 
Tragedy at Fort St. James Hairbreadth escapes McLough- 
lin and Douglas Promotion for Douglas Russian Fur Com-./'' 
pany Alaska Treaty Lease of Alaska from Russia (1838-9)^ 
to Hudson Bay Co. Armed fleet Settlers arriving Ban- 
croft moralizes The boundary question A noble act 
Douglas rescues Lassertes Roderick Finlayson Arrival at 
Vancouver Fort Langley Took possession of Fort Stickeen 
Douglas at Sitka Fort Taku built, 1840-1 Narrow escape 
of Finlayson Return of the Beaver to Puget Sound. . . 128-145 



CHAPTER XVII. Sir George Simpson's visit, 1841 His route 
Edmonton Fort Colville Fort Vancouver Interesting 
visits "Confusion of tongues" at Cowlitz River Puget 
Sound farms North to Fort Simpson and Stickeen Sitka 
Governor Etholin Immense trade Fur seals Teetotalism 
Permission to marry Change of headquarters Foit Van- 
couver described Large farms in 1841 Settlement, 1839 
Sandwich Islands Thence to Sitka 146-153 

CHAPTER XVIII. Fort Camosun (Victoria) selected Forts Taku 
and .Stickeen Flags half-mast No more rum The year 
1843, a semi-centennial mark Mackenzie and Vancouver, 
1793 Fort Victoria built Expedition from Fort Vancouver 
Father Bolduc Men from the north Expeditious work 
The very best men Douglas and McLoughlin Roderick 
Finlaysori Cowichins help themselves Covetous chiefs 
How Finlayson dealt with them The pipe of peace smoked 
Ships direct from England to Victoria, 1845 Whalers. . 154-166 

CHAPTER XIX. The territory to be divided Captain Gordon's ., 
arrival Royal Engineers Warre and Vavasour ' ' Fifty-four 6^ 
forty or fight " Sir Rich. Pakenham United States claims 
Great Britain's arguments Oregon boundary, 1827 Conven- 
tion of 1790 Oregon treaty passed, 1846 Free navigation 
of the Columbia Correspondence relative to Straits of Fuca 
boundary A fair proposition from Mr. Crompton, 1848 
Delayed until 1856 H. B. Co.'s business flourishing at Vic- 
toria under Mr. Finlayson Paul Kane Dr. McLoughlin 
retires Alexander Mackay's widow Hudson Bay Company 
indemnified A. C. Anderson High duties Discovery of 
gold in California Gold nuggets Removal of Factor Doug- 
las and family to Victoria, 1849 First notice received Great 
excitement Coal discovered J. W. Mackay Forts Langley 
ancLYale Fort Thompson John Tod Horse flesh used for 
food. . . . 166-184 

CHAPTER XX. Colonization introduced Immigration and miners 
Proposal to colonize Grant of Vancouver Island, 1849 
Rent, seven shillings per annum Circular issued by the 
Hudson Bay Company Conditions of settlement Report to 
be made every two years to Secretary of State. . . . 184-188 


CHAPTER I. Governor Blanshard appointed, 1849 Reaches Vic- 
toria, 1850 Pessimistic remarks by "Bancroft" Fort Rupert 
The Muir family Coal mining in 1853 Governor Blan- 
shard visits Fort Rupert Dr. Helmcken appointed first 
magistrate in the colony Desertion of sailors Three men 
% murdered Rewards offered Dr. Helmcken and Blenkinsop 
Petition from the settlers Provisional Council nominated 
Captain Grant's colony A large reserve Another grievance 
Governor Blanshard dissatisfied He departs for England, 
September, 1851 Governor Douglas sworn in, November, 
1851 Complimentary notice Lieutenant-Govern or of Queen 
Charlotte Islands. . . . 189-200 



CHAPTER II. Governor Douglas nominates his Council Chief 
Justice Cameron appointed Chief Justice Needham Chief 
Justice Begbie Petition from the settlers Licenses for 
revenue Legislature established, June, 1856 The first elec- 
tions Dr. Helmcken's speech Meeting of the Legislature 
Speech from the Throne by Governor Douglas The "happy 
family" Group of the pioneer legislators (Skinner should 
have been No. 2 and Yates No. 4) Rev. Robert J. Staines 
Reminiscences . . . 201-219 

CHAPTER 111. Charter and license repealed The monopoly The 
subject before the British Parliament, 1857 Gold excitement 
on Fraser River Governor requested for the mainland Lord 
Lytton's despatches Governor Douglas is made Governor of t 

the mainland by a separate Commission for the colony of 
British Columbia Full instructions Royal Engineers 
Colonel Moody Captain Parsons. 219-232 

CHAPTER IV. Further instructions and appointments Aborigines 
Protection Society Judge Begbie 's Commission Lord Lyt- 
ton's confidence in Governor Douglas Collector of Customs 
Miners' licenses Military assistance Road construction - 
Peter Brown's murder The murderer produced Tried to 
shoot the Governor Marines and blue jackets. . . . 232-239 

CHAPTER V. The San Juan Boundary Question Straits of Fuca 
The Boundary Commissioners Captain Prevost's view 
Mr. Campbell's contention Lord Russell's despatch Squat- 
ters on San Juan Island Collectors Sankster and Ebey 
Senator W. J. Mucdonald Sheep sold to pay taxes The two 
national flags unfurled Doubtful characters General Harney 
Difficulty about Cutler's pig Mr. Dallas, Dr. Tolmie and 
Mr. Fraser Mr. Griffin's letter and reply 240-250 

CHAPTER VI. A collision prevented by Governor Douglas Vis- 
count Milton Captmi Pickett Joint occupation of San 
Juan Island The peace-maker ! Additional letters A 
double game Ready for a broidside Casey's report Pre- 
paring for war Harney supers 3ded General Scott's instruc- 
tions Lord Lyons to Mr. Cass Joint military occupation 
pending settlement Whiskey sellers cause trouble The 
decision of the Emperor of Germany 251-262 

CHAPTER VII. The gold discoveries Rapid spread of mining 
news Thompson and Fraser Rivers The natives jealous 
Golden "aurora borealis " Crews desert vessels Well orga- 
nizedOverland route Indian fortifications Fires and 
counter fires The prowling savages follow Over thirty thou- 
sand people Gold dust on deposit Tovvnsend and Whatcom 
Rates of passage War vessels Governor Douglas visited 
the mainland The fur trade superseded A standard license 
Provisions scarce Indians dislike the " B< ston men "Party 
of miners formed - A skirmish Peace restored Conference 
at Government House Decision of the Council on navigation 
laws and Fraser River. . 263-273 


CHAPTER VIII. Second meeting of the Legislature, 1858 Water 
supply Bill of Supply for the year Education Schools 
examined by Mr. Cndge Impromptu speech by Governor 
Douglas to the miners Free port of Victuria Public notices 
Search after gold Graphic description. .... 274-283 

CHAPTER IX. Mining regulations Puget Sound Agricultural 
Company The African race Spirituous liquor -Difficulties 
between the miners and natives Governor Douglas and party 
proceed to the mainland Commissioners appointed New 
map of Victoria Streets named Road-cutting expedition 
Fort Langley Whiskey, powder and shot Governor Douglas 
resigned Hudson Bay Company factorship Proclaimed Gov- 
ernor of British Columbia Ceremonies at Fort Langley 
Proclamations issued Sale of Langley town lots Name 
changed to Derby 284-291 

CHAPTER X. Increased trade Comparative view of imports 
The current year of 1858 New buildings Colonel Moody's 
arrival Lieut. Mayne of the Plumper Desperate characters 
at Hills Bar Royal Engineers Marines and blue jackets 
FoyXXangley and Fort Hope Canoe trip Floating ice 
Narrow escapes Struck on Cornish Bar Hospitable treat- 
ment at Yale. .... . . . 291-297 

CHAPTER XL Colonel Moody holds church service Orderly and 
attentive congregation of miners Edward McGowaii com- 
mits an assault Explanations Peace restored McGowan 
obliged to flee Salute at Fort Hope Captain Lewis Site of 
New Westminster examined and selected Derby abandoned 
Romantic Sapperton Queensborough Sale of lots. . . 297-302 

CHAI ; TER XII. Missionary Duncan- -His great success among the 
natives H.M.S. Satellite Free passage Sailed December, 
1856, reached Vancouver Island June, 1857 The first Pro- 
testant missionary Roman Catholic priests Their mode of 
teaching ]o.rjb .Simpson Attempt to murder Duncan Un- 
welcome visitors Onerous duties Indian schools Assist- 
ance for Duncan He chooses a new site Met-lah-kat-lah 
Mr. Tugwell. 302-307 

CHAPTER XIII. New Year receptions New school-house New 
missions established Queensborough surveyed by the Royal 
Engineers First public service Express companies Postal 
rates Colonel Moody's residence Public Buildings in Vic- 
toria, 1859 Parliament and public buildings in progress of 
construction, 1893 United States currency Messages from 
Governor Douglas 307-316 

CHAPTER XIV. Gold plentiful Details of gold mining The 
prospector's pan How it is used The " rocker " or "cradle " 
How worked Sluicing Mining at Hills Bar Water regu- 
lationsAn inch of water Hydraulic mining Scientific 
mining. 316-321 


CHAPTER XV. Large gravel deposits Hydraulic mining in 
Cariboo Similar work in California Quartz mining Other 
rich gold regions Mode of treating the ora Quartz mill 
Rush of miners not as great in 1859 Queens borough pro- 
claimed port of entry Settlement on Vancouver Island 
Land sold by auction Queensborough Name changed to 
New Westminster, July, 1859 Report and despatch, October, 
1859, from Governor Douglas to the Duke of Newcastle 
Expedition to Queen Charlotte Islands Major Downie's 
report Skeena River Babine Lake, one hundred miles long 
" Hunting for gold " Coast Indians Small-pox The men 
dissipated and dangerous The women degraded A grateful 
husband Polygamy. ... .... 321-328 

CHAPTER XVI. The Clergy Reserve question Rev. E. Cridge 
Salary of the chaplain Agreement with Hudson Bay Com- 
pany A startling fact Opposition to Clergy Reserves Sun- 
dry opinions Rev. Wm. F. Clark Public sentiment re- 
spected The second general election, 1860 Judge Begbie's 
report Non-residence of officials Mount Baker. . . 329-333 

CHAPTER XVII. Gold mining transactions and returns Five 
thousand men employed in 1861 In the Cariboo country, 
1,500 The earnings The lucky ones Value of the gold 
dust The official table, 1858 to 1893, inclusive. . . . 334-336 

CHAPTER XVIII. Missionary work Various denominations 
Church of England Methodist Society for the Propagation 
of the Gospel Duncan Cridge Crosby Tugwell Rev. 
Dr. Sheldon Jackson His account of Mr. Duncan's early life 
Duncan's arrival at Fort Simpson Tsimpsean Indians, 
2, 300 Human depravity Medicine-men Dog-eaters Fire- 
water Singing and dancing School opens, 1858 Removal 
to Met-lah-kat-lah in 1862 The regulations adopted Old 
ties broken Bishop Hills visits the village in 1863 Bap- 
tizes fifty-seven adults One thousand people Band of 
twenty -four instruments Mission at Massett Average atten- 
dance at church service, 350 Mr. Collison, 1878 Rev. 
George Sneath Death of a chief Alert Bay Mission. . . 337-344 

CHAPTER XIX. Royal Engineers Extensive surveys Reports 
made by Lieutenants Mayne and Palmer Mayne's journey 
along the Thompson and other rivers Fort Kamloops How 
the Hudson Bay Company officers live Their character 
Shuswap chief The dwelling or hut Walter Moberly, C.E., 
arrives Hardships Tries mining Return trip and poor 
luck Receives appointment from Colonel Moody Heavy 
bill at a country hotel Partner with Mr. Dewdney Public 
works Proclamation Cariboo Road and Royal Engineers, 
1861 Messrs. Trutch and Spence hold (1862) contracts to 
build portions of the road. ....... 345-351 

CHAPTER XX. ^A resident governor asked for Delegation waits 
on Governor Douglas A representative assembly wanted 
(1861) Petition to the Crown A lengthy and exhaustive 
reply to the memorial in twenty-six paragraphs . . . 352-358- 



CHAPTER XXI. Roads and salaries Expenditure for roads 
Separate governors proposed Despatch, Juno 15th, 1863 
Legislative council to be constituted in British Columbia 
Salaries of officers in Vancouver Island colony Salaries in 
British Columbia A difficult problem A new legislature to 
be elected and convened similar to that already existing in 
Vancouver Island colony Ey~officio members nominated . 358-361 

CHAPTER XXII. Governor Douglas knighted, 1863 His com- 
mission as governor of Vancouver Island colony lapses A 
popular governor Commission as governor of British Colum- 
bia terminates in 1864 Closes his term at New Westminster 
Enthusiastic farewell procession Governor Kennedy to 
succeed Douglas in Vancouver Island He arrives, March, 
1864 Governor Seymour succeeds Douglas in British 
Columbia He arrives, April, 1864 A proposition to unite 
both colonies under one governor Resolutions passed at 
public meetings for and against the union Victoria and New 
Westminster agree to be united Legislative Assembly, 1865, 
passes union resolutions Despatch transmitted by Governor 
Kennedy to Colonial Secretary Amor de Cosmos . . 362-367 

CHAPTER XXIII. Governor Seymour opposes union Despatch 
to Secretary Cardwell He writes from Paris On his mar- 
riage tour Petition from 445 residents in British Colombia 
in favor of union Effort to have permanent seat of govern- 
ment at New Westminster Royal Engineers disbanded, 1863 
Those remaining, 1894 ... ... 368-373 

CHAPTER XXIV. Further surveys for roads and railways Mr. 
Moberly instructed to superintend the work The Columbia 
River route The " Big Bend " and Yellow-head Pass Gov- 
ernor Seymour ceases to oppose the union of the colonies 
His speech, 1808 Confederation memorial from Victoria, 
1868, to the Governor-General of Canada Hon. S. L. Tilley's 
reply Discussions on the Pacific Railway Alfred Wadding- 
ton Bute Inlet route Confederation League formed The 
Dominion takes action Open-air meeting at Barkerville 
Rousing speeches Babbitt and Booth Delegates appointed 
to attend the Yale convention 374-381 

CHAPTER XXV. Preparations for Confederation Convention at 
Yale Committee appointed They report in favor of the 
immediate admission of British Columbia into the Dominion 
Contrary vote in the Legislative Council Legislature pro- 
rogued, March, 1869 Death of Dr. Davie Death of Gover- 
nor Seymour Governor Musgrave appointed His early 
career Trip to Cariboo Despatch from Lord Granville 
Legislature meets, February, 1870 Postage rate, six cents. . 382-387 

CHAPTER XXVI. Union with Canada Resolutions framed The 
Legislature of British Columbia Ready for work of 1 he ses- 
sion Outline of terms of union The great Confederation 
debate Discussion lasts from 9th March to 23rd April Dele- 
gates Dr. Helmcken, Trutch and Bernard chosen by the 
Executive to present terms of union to Commons, Ottawa 
Terms agreed on, July 7th, 1870 Afterwards ratified by 
British Columbia. . 388-397 



CHAPTER XXVII. Terms of Union guarantee Change in the 
Constitution of British Columbia -Railway to be completed 
in ten years Electoral districts formed The new council, 
elected November, 1870, meets January 5th, 1871 Speaker- 
ship declined Legislature opened by Governor Musgrave 
Important considerations Address to the Queen Responsi- 
ble Government Old map discovered Motion by Dr. 
Helmckeii Map called in British claims admitted A big 
threat Admission of British Columbia to the Union Ban- 
quet to Mr. Truich at Ottawa Explanations Sandford 
Fleming appointed Chief Engineer to Pacific Railway Clos- 
ing remarks by Governor Musgrave Harmonious relations 
Complimentary addresses Created a knight Civil Engineers 
Moberly, Maclennan, etc. Marcus Smith Various Impor- 
tant surveys. 397-404 


CHAPTER I. The first Lieutenant-Governor Visit of Hon. Mr. 
Langevin Cariboo His report First Legislative Assembly 
under Confederation List of members Bills passed Sena- 
tors appointed Representatives at Ottawa Richardson's 
report of surveys Marcus Smith Seymour Narrows 
Yellow-head Pass Sandford Fleming Memoir Pacific Rail- 
way Ocean to ocean Principal Grant Professor Macoun 
The Pacific Ocean cable 405-414 

CHAPTER II. Three routes surveyed Source of Fraser River- 
Route to Burrard Inlet selected Cost of survey up to 1878 
Subsidy and land grant Charter applied for Sir Hugh 
Allan Huntingdon's statement Committee to investigate 
Mackenzie's administration Meeting of British Columbia 
Legislature, 1873 Esquimalt dry-dock Visit to England by 
Mr. De Cosmos Protest against the continued breach of 
terms of Union Hon. Mr. Walkem proceeds to England to 
present petition The "Carnarvon terms" Mr. Edgar's 
mission Further railway surveys. ..... 415-422 

CHAPTER III. Surveys in the interior Mr. Jarvis Great hard- 
ships Meeting of Legislature, 1876 Resignation of Walkem 
government The Mongolian question Lord Dufferin's visit 
Would not pass under an objectionable arch Declined to 
receive an address from a deputation Public feeling 
Poetry on the subject Mackenzie defended Lord Dufferin's 
tour His celebrated speech Sir John A. Macdonald again 
premier. 423-428 

CHAPTER IV. A new syndicate Terms of construction 
Subsidy First sod on Canadian Pacific turned, 1880 Bridge 
across the Fraser Seven thousand men employed A daring 
feat Esijuimalt and Nanaimo railway The railway belt 
Dry-dock transferred to the Dominion Conditions Captain 
Devereaux Impregnable fortifications 429-434 



CHAPTER V. Transfer of the Canadian Pacific Railway The 
general manager Lord Lome and the Princess Louise Visit 
to British Columbia Sir Charles Tupper Lord Lansdowne's 
visit Party of railway directors Union of east and west 
Ceremony of driving the "golden spike " The first through 
train. . 434-440 

CHAPTER VI. New management of Hudson Bay Company 
Members of Board Messrs. Work, Dr. Tolmie, Mactavish 
and Grahame Chief commissioner Messrs. Charles and 
Munro Thomas R. Smith Robert H. Hall C. C. Chipman. 440-444 

CHAPTER VII. New route of travel Geological examinations 
Dr. Selwyn's extended explorations Gold seekers in 1862 
Ninety Red River carts Yellow-head Pass An unfortu- 
nate trip The survivors Public museum Mr. Fannin 
Captain Palliser's report adverse Dr. G. M. Dawson, 1875, 
1877 and 1879 Valuable geological reports .... 445-449 

CHAPTER VIII. Travel and trade facilities The Canadian Navi- 
gation Company Manager John Irving Canadian Pacific 
Railway Company's line The- three Empresses Log of the 
Empress of India Around the world Canadian and Austra- 
lian line The proposed Pacific cable Hon. Mr. Bowell 
Sandford Fleming Trade of Hawaiian islands Northern 
Pacific Steamship Company Pacific Coast Steamship Com- 
pany Puget Sound and Alaska Steamship Company The 
Comox line The Canadian Pacific Railway Three of the 
directors created knights The steamer Beaver First on the 
North Pacific Comparative size of the present steamships 
View of Beaver and Indian canoes (see also page 501 for 
canoes and totems) ........ 449-457 

CHAPTER IX. Railways, coal deposits and gold -Railways in 
course of construction Projected lines Nakusp and Slocan 
railway Nicola Valley railway Extraordinary coal deposits 
Analysis Seam thirty feet thick Abundant supply Van- 
couver island mines Nanaimo Mining for gold Dredging 
for gold West Kootenay district rich in ores East Kootenay 
gives great promise Assays Nelson Skylark mine 
Kootenay triumphs 458-463 

CHAPTER X. Education Hudson Bay Company provide first 
teachers for the colony of Vancouver Island Robert J. 
Stain es and wife arrive, 1849 Mr. Staines proposes to 
return to England in 1853, but is drowned Rev. Mr. 
Cridge (now Bishop) arrives, 1855 The agreement made 
with the Hudson Bay Company Appointed honorary super- 
intendent of education His report of examinations, 1&61 
Alfred Waddington, superintendent, 1865 Governor Sey- 
mour refuses any aid to public schools, after union of colo- 
nies After Confederation Provincial Government organized 
a non-sectarian school system Mr. Jessop first superinten- 
dent after Confederation Visit of Lord Dufferin, 1876, to 
public schools of Victoria Promised three medals C. C. 
Mackenzie next superintendent of schools, 1878 S. D. 



Pope, present superintendent, appointed 1884 The "school- 
master's friend " Great increase in school attendance A most 
efficient board of examiners Free education No separate 
schools Synopsis of amended School Act, 1894 Two school 
inspectors Prize medals continue to be distributed by the 
Dominion Governors The prize medallists High schools 
Value of school property View of two Victoria schools 
Craigflower school, 1861 Minister of Education, Col. Baker 
Death of Hon. John Robson, referred to in school report 
of 1892 . . . 464-476 

^CHAPTER XI. Ecclesiastical Roman Catholic missionaries early 
in the field Bishop Demers Father Lootens (now bishop) 
Father J. B. Bolduc The Oblate missionaries First Catholic 
school Many churches The " Mother House " Bishop 
D'Herbomez Bishop Seghers St. Joseph hospital Bishop 
Brondel Bishop Seghers assassinated Bishop Lemmens 
Old and new cathedral Separation of the mainland First 
"Vicar Apostolic" See of Westminster Bishop Durieu 
Eighty churches in Westminster diocese Schools in charge 
of Oblate fathers Industrial schools for Indian children 
Communities of religious women ...... 477-484 

CHAPTER XII. Methodist work begun in British Columbia, 
1859, by Dr. Evans Revs. White, Robson and Browning 
Governor Douglas lays corner-stone of first Methodist church 
Rev. D. V. Lucas arrives, avssistant missionary, in 1862 
Five congregations in 1893, in Victoria Rev. Mr. Browning, 
Nanaimo The mainland Methodist Conference organized, 
1887 Places of worship in the Province, 1893 Rev. Thomas 
Crosby Successful amongst the natives at Fort Simpson 
Church built School established Mrs. Crosby and Miss 
Knott Industrial fair Revival, winter of 1877-8 Mission 
extends to Kit-a-mart, 150 miles south of Fort Simpson 
Potlatch Nitinat Indians Rev. J. Stone Coqualeetza In- 
dian Institute Rev. E. Robson College founded at New 
Westminster, 1892. . . 484-492 

CHAPTER XIII. Presbyterian Mission field, 1858 First mis- 
sionary, 1861 Rev. John Hall First Presbyterian Church, 
Victoria, 1863 Second missionary stationed at New West- 
minster, Rev. Robert Jamieson, 1862 Nanaimo, 1864 Revs. 
Aitken, Clyde, Anderson and Miller, until 1889 Rev. D. A. 
McRae installed, 1891 Rev. Mr. Hall succeeded by Rev. 
Mr. Nimmo, First Presbyterian Church, Victoria, 1865 
Rev. J. Reid, 1876 Rev. Mr. Smith, 1881 Rev. Mr. 
Gamble, 1882 Rev. Donald Fraser, 1884 Rev. Dr. Camp- 
bell, 1892, the present pastor Rev. Mr. Somerville, 1868 
Second congregation formed, St. Andrew's, 1869 Rev. Mr. 
McGregor R. Stephen Rev. P. McF. McLeod, 1888 New 
St. Andrew's, 1890 Central Church, 1894 D. McRae, St. 
Paul's, Victoria, 1891 Hev. R. G. Murison, 1894 Rapid 
progress in Vancouver city Four Presbyterian churches 
Presbytery of Columbia, 1886 General Assembly, 1887 
New Presbytery of Calgary, 181)4 492-499 



CHAPTER XIV. Anglican Rev. H. Beaver Rev. Robert Stain es 
Rev. E. Cridge Bishop Hills arrives at Es ]uimnlt, Janu- 
ary, 1860 St. John's (iron) Church Present cathedral con- 
secrated, 1872 Diocesan Synod, 1875 Diocese divided, 1879 
Bishop Hills resigns, 1892 Succeeded by Bishop Perrin, 
1893 Clergy endowment Industrial Indian school, Alert 
Bay Diocese of New Westminster Bishop Sillitoe Christ 
Church, Hope, 1>60 Other churches Diocese of Columbia 
Bishop Ridley William Duncan Industries in 1882-3. . 499-503 

CHAPTER XV. Baptist Organized in British Columbia, 1877 
Wm. Carne, first pastor, Victoria Calvary Church Em- 
manuel Church, 1886 Olivet Church, New Westminster 
First Baptist Church, 1886 Second Church, 1891 Third 
Church, 1894 Nanaimo, 1890 Membership in British 
Columbia. ... . 504-505 

Bishop Cridge, 1875 Consecrated 1876 Site for church 
granted by Sir James Douglas 505-506 

CHINESE MISSIONS. The per capita tax 7,500 in British Columbia 
School opened, 1885 Converts "Girls' Rescue Home" 
Mr. Gardiner Rev. Mr. Lipscombe Rev. Mr. Winchester 
Mr. Brodie. . 506-507 

THE SALVATION ARMY. "Attacking force" in 1887 " Fighting 
force" in 1894 The officers in British Columbia Meetings 
of the "Army" Attendance at meetings Barracks at 
Nanaimo Victoria is headquarters of British Columbia 
War Cry circulation Brass band "Poor Man's Shelter" at 
Vancouver " Rescue Home " in Victoria. .... 508 

THE CHURCH OF THE JEWS. The ancient church Synagogue in 

Victoria The Rabbi 508 

CHAPTER XVI. Lord Stanley of Preston Lady Stanley, 1889 
Loyally received at Vancouver city and New Westminster 
"Stanley Park," named after his Excellency Crosses to 
Victoria Cordially welcomed Guests of Lieut. -Govern or 
Nelson A civic banquet given A "superlative" speech 
The Canadian Pacific Railway Mishap to the Ampkion. 
Narrow escape of the vice-regal party Lord Aberdeen and 
the Countess of Aberdeen visit British Columbia, 1894 Mar- 
ried in 1877 Visit to the Coldstream ranch e Address from 
the pioneers The Kootenay country The maple leaf The 
party reach Vancouver city Hotel Vancouver His Excel- 
lency and the Countess on the balcony Three addresses pre- 
sented and replied to The Halloween banquet Characteristic 
address from the chairman Suitable reply The toasts of the 
evening Excellent speeches Sandford FJeming and Mr. 
Mercer The Pacific cable Canadian enterprise Mackenzie 
Bowell Lady Marjorie, the youngest editress Visit to the 
schools and the court house Competition medals promised 
by the Governor-General Art and science. . . 509-526 



CHAPTER XVII. Arrival at Victoria Guard of honor Sir Wil- 
liam Wallace Society Sunday services Board of Trade 
Important address Provincial topics Agriculture the " back- 
bone industry " Sons of Erin Compliment to the Countess 
of Aberdeen Public schools' welcome Dignity of teaching 
The Minister of Education Address by the Countess Wee 
Willie Winkie The Alexandra Ladies' Club. . . . 526-535 

CHAPTER XVIII. Visit to Duncan's station Addresses from 
farmers and Indians Lord Aberdeen on farming Compli- 
mentary to the railways An evening party The set of honor 
and Scotch reels Jubilee hospital Chinese missions Royal 
Marine Artillery Boys' Brigade Special medals Women 
of Canada Address in the theatre National Council of 
Canada Victoria Branch Farewell to Victoria Wellington 
mines -At Nanaimo, the coal metropolis Enthusiastic recep- 
tion Vancouver Coal Company's works The vice-regal party 
leave for Vancouver on steamer Joan Kamloops List of 
governors and lieutenant-governors 536-545 

CHAPTER XIX. Parliamentary Members of Executive Six 
parliaments Premiers, presidents of council and speaker 
Opening of the Seventh Parliament by Lieutenant-Governor 
Dewdiiey List of members A critique Motion on "the 
Fisheries" Revenue for the year Appropriation to suf- 
ferers by flood in Fraser River. ...... 546-554 

CHAPTER XX. Fur sealing and the Alaska boundary Claims by 
Sealers Treaty of 1892 Arbitration in Paris, 1893 Annual 
seal catch since 1890 President Cleveland's message, 1894 
Photo- topography Mount St. Elias lost to the United States 
Mount Aberdeen United States charts Portland Canal 
beyond the treaty limit Revilla Gigedo Death of Sir John 
Thompson 555-559 

CHAPTER XXI. Condition of the Province Sources of and 
Excess of Expenditure over Revenue Loans, how applied 
Inscribed stock Increase in Revenue Expenditure for seven 
years Exemption from taxes New buildings The ocean 
docks Marine railway Manufactures Industrial Establish- 
ments Arts and sciences The artists Astronomy Fruit 
trees and Forestry Lumber trade Temporary stringency 
Growth and possibilities of trade Colonization and free home- 
steads A great MARITIME PROVINCE 560-568 


The Author Frontispiece, 

Captain Cook 18 

Captain Meares 28 

Launch of the "N.-W. America." 33 

Captain Vancouver 50 

Sir A. Mackenzie 60 

Sir George Simpson 112 

Dr. Dawson 133 

Sir James Douglas (2nd Governor). 134 

Roderick Finlayson 143 

Fort Victoria (views) 160 

A. C. Anderson 176 

John Tod (Council) 183 

Richard Blanshard (1st Governor). 189 

John Muir (Council) 191 

Nanaimo (view, 1853) 192 

Chief Justice Cameron 201 

Chief Justice Begbie 202 

Captain Cooper (Council) 204 

Members 1st Legislature V.I.C. . . 210 
Sir Edward Bulwer (Lord) Lytton 221 

Straits of San Juan de Fuca 242 

Senator W. J. Macdonald 245 

Chief Factor A. J. Dallas. 248 

Colonel R. Moody 294 

William Duncan 303 

New Parliament Buildings 312 

Cary Castle 333 

Governor Kennedy (3rd V.I.C.). . 364 

Amor de Cosmos 366 

Dr. Davie 385 

Governor Seymour (2nd & 4th B.C.) 386 
Governor Musgrave (5th B.C.). . . 386 

Lieut. -Governor Trutch 405 

Hon. J. F. McCreight 406 

Lieut. -Governor Cornwall 407 

Sir John A. Macdonald 408 

Marcus Smith 409 

Sandford Fleming 411 

Principal Grant 413 

Hon. Alex. Mackenzie 419 

Hon. Robert Beaven 421 

George A. Walkem 424 

A. C. Elliott 424 

F. G. Vernon 425 

Lieut. -Governor Richards 425 

Lord Dufferin (Governor) 428 

Sir William Van Home 434 

Marquis of Lome (Governor) 435 

The Princess Louise . 435 

Marquis of Lansdowne (Governor). 437 

Group, Driving Last Spike 438 

Hon. John Work 440 

Dr. W. F. Tolmie 441 

Dugald Mactavish 442 

Alexander Grahame 443 

Captain Irving, M. P. P 449 

Steamer "Islander " 450 

Steamer " Empress of India" 451 

Steamer ' ' Beaver " 456 

Indian Canoes 457 

Rev. Bishop Cridge 465 

Craigflower School 466 

Dr. Pope, LL.D 470 

North Ward School, Victoria 475 

South Ward School, Victoria .... 475 

View of Victoria, 1892 476 

Bishop Demers 477 

Bishop Lootens 478 

Roman Catholic Cathedral (old) . . 481 
Roman Catholic Cathedral (new).. 481 

Rev. E. Robson 486 

Rev. Thomas Crosby 487 

Duncan's Indian Church 488 

Duncan's Indian Band 489 

Methodist Church, Victoria (old).. 490 
Methodist Church, Victoria (Met.) 490 
Indian Methodist Church ..... 491 
Indian Institute, Coqualeetza. . . . 491 
First Presbyterian Church, Vic. . . 493 
Old St. Andrew's Church, Vic. . . 494 
New St. Andrew's Church, Vic. . . 497 

St. Andrew's, Vancouver 498 

Bishop Hills 499 

St. John's (Iron Church), Victoria 500 

Christ Church, Victoria 500 

Indian Village and Totems, etc. . . 501 
Y.M.C.A. Build'g, New Westmn'r 502 

Met-lah-kat-lah Village 503 

Emmanuel Baptist Church 504 

Reformed Episcopal Church 505 

Lord Stanley (Governor) 509 

Lieut. -Governor Nelson 509 

Earl of Aberdeen (Governor) 510 

Countess of Aberdeen . 510 

Hotel Vancouver 513 

First Presbyt'n Ch., Vancouver. . 518 
Homer St. Meth. Ch., Vancouver. 518 

East End School, Vancouver 520 

West End School, Vancouver 520 

Central School, Vancouver 524 

High School, Vancouver 524 

Court House, Vancouver 526 

Harbor of Nanaimo ; 543 

J. Rocke Robertson 546 

A. E. B. Davie 546 

Wm. Smithe 547 

C. E. Pooley (President of Council). 547 
J. H. Turner (Min. of Finance). . . 548 

John Robson 548 

Robert Dunsmuir 548 

Colonel Baker (Min. of Education). 549 

Theodore Davie ( Premier) 549 

G. B. Martin (Com. Lands, etc) , . 549 

D. W. Higgins (Speaker) 550 

Lieut. -Governor E. Uewdney .... 550 

W. F. King 557 

Fruit Cannery, Victoria ' 566 


1. A CONTINUOUS HISTORY. Although many valuable and interest- 
ing works have been written concerning BRITISH COLUMBIA, or NEW 
OALEDONIA, as a portion of it was formerly designated, yet, for the 
most part, each was devoted to some special object, and did not furnish 
a continuous history of this portion of the British Empire ; so it 
is, that up to the present no work has been published which furnishes 
a consecutive, comprehensive, readable history of the country. 

2. RISE AND PROGRESS. To provide the public with such informa- 
tion is the object of the present undertaking. It proposes to place 
on record and elucidate to a certain extent, the rise and progress of 
British Columbia from its earliest discovery to the present time. To 
accomplish this in a manner which will be convenient to the reading 
public, events will be arranged in chronological periods. These 
periods for reference and perspicuity, will be divided into sub-divi- 
sions to mark epochs as they occur, and to point out the develop- 
ment of the Province from its former condition as a wilderness to its 
present prosperous state. 

3. THE PRE-HISTORIC PERIOD. Of the pre-historic period, that is, 
prior to the arrival of Captain JAMES COOK, on the north-west coast 
of America, little need be said. The fact, however, is well estab- 
lished, that when Captain Cook and other early navigators visited 
the shores of the Pacific in this latitude, a very large population of 
aborigines existed on the coast. Alexander Mackenzie, in his expedi- 
tion across the unexplored portion of the North American continent 
to the Pacific, in 1793, also found along his route a numerous popu- 
lation in the interior. But, like their brethren on the coast, they did 
not possess any written records. Their traditions were mythical; 
and, though carved emblematically on totems of enduring cedar in 
their villages along the seaboard, these emblems have not been 
deciphered so as to throw any light on the origin of the native tribes. 


The number of the aborigines, since the advent of traders amongst 
them, has diminished greatly, and continues to decrease year after 

4. THE FUR-TRADING PERIOD. The second, or the fur- trading 
period, is full of interest and importance, whether considered in 
connection with sea or land. It may be said to extend from 1778 to 
1858, and embraces a variety of subjects. At the outset, it has to 
deal with the claims of Spain to the sovereignty of the whole west coast 
of America, from Cape Horn to the sixtieth degree of north latitude, 
which was the assumed limit of Russian occupation on the Continent 
of America. The Spaniards in Mexico claimed that they made 
a voyage of exploration north from Gil Bias, 1774 or 1775, when 
they touched at three points on the coast. The most northerly was 
57 18' or nearly in the latitude of Sitka ; the next mentioned was 
47 21', which is south of the Straits of Fuca : consequently they did 
not land, during the voyage, on any portion of the coast which is 
now included in the western frontier of British Columbia. 

5. FRANCIS DRAKE. The voyage of Francis Drake around Cape 
Horn, in 1579, to the North Pacific Ocean, is so apocryphal in its 
description of the northern limit he claims to have reached, that it 
seems very doubtful if that voyage can, in any way, be connected with 
British Columbian history. 

6. THE FIRST ARRIVAL AT NOOTKA. Captain COOK'S voyage, in 
1778, therefore, gives the earliest authentic record of the discovery 
by him of that portion of the west coast of America now known as 
Vancouver Island. He landed at Nootka, near the centre of the 
west coast of the island, and gave the place of his landing the name 
which it still retains. After Captain Cook's departure, Nootka con- 
tinued to be the rendezvous for vessels trading on the west coast. 


said by Meares, in his narrative, to have been the second British 
navigator who arrived at Nootka. He sailed from China in 1785, 
in a vessel of only seventy tons burden, which was equipped by 
merchants there and placed under his command with a crew of less 
than thirty men. The narrative says, they " set sail in her to seek the 
distant coast of America ; to explore its coasts, and to open such an 
intercourse with the inhabitants as might tend to a future commercial 
establishment with them." On his arrival at Nootka, "the natives 
presuming upon the inferior size of the vessel and the limited number 
of her crew, made a desperate attack upon her, which was repulsed by 


the superior bravery and good conduct of their new visitors. The 
hostilities soon, however, ended in commercial friendship, and a 
quantity of sea-otter skins was obtained from them." 

merly a lieutenant in the British navy, next occupies a prominent 
and important position in the early history of British Columbia. He 
arrived at Nootka, from China, on a trading expedition, in 1788. 
His friendly disposition and kind treatment of the natives made him 
a great favorite with them. He formed a settlement at Nootka, and 
built a vessel there. Subsequently, in his absence, his ships were 
seized by order of the Spanish officer who had arrived and taken 
possession of the harbor, and had destroyed the houses built by him. 
The treatment which he had received, and also his losses, Captain 
Meares represented to the British Government, who promptly inter- 
fered in the matter both for the protection of their subjects, and to 
uphold the honor of the British flag. 

appointed by the British Admiralty to proceed to Nootka and 
ascertain the amount of losses which had been sustained by Captain 
Meares, and the indemnification due to the owners of the vessels 
which had beeen seized by Spain. The result was that soon after 
Vancouver's arrival at Nootka, in 1792, the Spanish fleet withdrew, 
and the difficulty was settled by arbitration between the courts of 
Great Britain and Spain. That decision secured to the British 
Crown all the north-west coast from what was known as California 
to the Russian trading-posts in Alaska. 

partner in the North- West Company, commenced his memorable 
journey. Starting from Lake Athabaska, east of the Rocky Moun- 
tains, at the most westerly station then belonging to the Company, he 
traversed the unknown region westward across the Continent, thereby 
pointing out the future route to the Pacific coast, and earning for 
himself undying fame. 

11. THE NORTH-WEST COMPANY. Soon afterwards the North- 
West Company followed up Mackenzie's explorations. They opened 
trails, built and established forts in the interior of that vast region, 
which was then named "New Caledonia." They traced the great 
rivers of the Pacific slope the Fraser, and the Thompson, one of its 
principal affluents, and also the Columbia River from their sources 
to their outlets at the ocean. They advanced along the Columbia 


River and made their headquarters at Astoria (afterwards Fort 
George), which was continued as such until 1824, when Fort Van- 
couver was built on the north side of the Columbia River, -nearly 
opposite the southern end of Puget Sound. Astoria, at the mouth of 
the Columbia River, remained as an outpost whence goods and furs 
were conveyed along the Columbia to the interior and Montreal. 

12. UNION OF THE FUR COMPANIES. An immense trade was thus 
established and carried on in New Caledonia by the North- West 
Company. In 1821, the North- West Company and the Hudson Bay 
Company amalgamated. By so doing they extended and made more 
profitable the trade that had been carried on by them at some points 
at a loss, under the keen rivalry which had existed. The consoli- 
dated companies retained the name of " The Hudson Bay Company." 

13. LEASE OF ALASKA. Nothing transpired after the union of the 
companies to disturb the traders or hinder their prosperity, until 
about the year 1839, when settlers began to arrive in Oregon from 
the older portions of the United States. About this time, also, a 
portion of the Alaskan coast was leased by the Hudson Bay Com- 
pany from the Russian Government. The terms were stipulated at 
an annual rental of $2,000, and were concluded during a conference 
at Sitka, between the Company's chief factor, JAMES DOUGLAS, and 
ETHOLIN, the Russian governor. 

14. OREGON TREATY. Doubts now existed as to where the dividing 
line separating the United States from British territory would be 
located, as formerly the northern portion of Oregon territory had 
been held in common by traders of both countries. It was, there- 
fore, thought prudent to prepare for the removal of the Hudson Bay 
Company's headquarters on the Columbia River, to a site on the 
seaboard in British territory. After full examination and careful 
deliberation, Mr. Douglas decided to choose the site at CAMOSUN, 
where the city of Victoria now stands. That place was selected on 
account of its convenient position on the Pacific Ocean, as well as for 
the ease with which it could be reached from trading-posts on the 

15. FORT VICTORIA COMMENCED. The erection of a fort was decided 
on, the building of which was commenced in 1843. A palisaded 
enclosure, one hundred yards square, in which were eight log houses, 
bastions, etc., was completed, ready for occupation and defence, 
within seven months of the date of the commencement of laying out 
the grounds. The name "Carnosuii" was continued until 1846, 


when it was changed to Victoria. Since the settlement at Nootka, 
in 1788, by Captain Meares, the natives had remained in undisturbed 
possession until this time. 

16. THE FIRST OFFICER ix CHARGE. Fort Victoria was, on its 
completion in 1843, placed in charge of Charles Ross, who died in 
1844. He was succeeded by Roderick Finlayson, who had been second 
officer in the fort since the commencement of its building, and who 
remained in command until 1849. At this time the Company's head- 
quarters were removed from Fort Vancouver to Fort Victoria, and 
Factor Douglas assumed command. He was accompanied by Chief 
Factor Ogden from Fort Vancouver. Mr. Dugald McTavish re- 
mained at Fort Vancouver to look after the Company's extensive 
stock-raising and farming interests in the Columbia District and on 
Puget Sound. 

17. GOLD DISCOVERIKS. Attention having been drawn to the pro- 
gress of settlement in Oregon, it was considered proper that the British 
possessions to the north of that territory should have similar advan- 
tages. The discovery of gold in California in 1848 strengthened the 
opinion in Great Britain that the time had arrived when the Pacific 
coast and New Caledonia should become more than a mere fur-hunt- 
ing preserve. To promote settlement, a grant of the whole of Van- 
couver Island was made to the Hudson Bay Company on certain 
conditions. The Company withdrew its trading-posts from Sitka 
and other places on the north coast except Fort Simpson. The 
fur-trading period was evidently drawing to a close. 

18. CROWN COLONY FORMED. The third "The colonial period" 
dates from 1849. In that year Vancouver Island was constituted a 
Crown Colony by the appointment of RICHARD BLANSHARD to the 
Governorship. He arrived at Victoria, from England, via Panama, 
in 1850 ; but not finding the position what he expected, he returned 
the next year to London. He was succeeded by JAMES DOUGLAS, in 
1851. Governor Douglas retained his then position of Chief Factor 
of the Hudson Bay Company. At the time of his appointment as 
Governor of the Colony of Vancouver Island, he was raised to the 
dignity of " C.B." 

19. COLONIZATION AND SETTLEMENT. Representative government 
was introduced into the colony in 1856. Colonization and settle- 
ment made slow progress. Roads, however, were constructed and 
surveys extended to meet the requirements of the people who arrived 
in connection with the gold discoveries on Fraser River, and remained 


on the Island ; but as the mainland was beyond the jurisdiction of 
the colony of Vancouver Island, it was found necessary to constitute 
that immense territory into an independent colony. 

20. A SECOND CROWN COLONY. This was accomplished in 1858. 
The governorship of the new colony was vested in Governor Douglas, 
and added to that of Vancouver Island. NEW CALEDONIA was 
merged into BRITISH COLUMBIA, by which designation the mainland 
was thereafter to be known. 

21. NEW CALEDONIA. The boundaries of New Caledonia formerly 
included the whole region from Peace River and the Rocky Moun- 
tains to the Pacific Ocean. Its southern boundary was reckoned to 
be the Columbia River from the outlet of that river on the Pacific 
Ocean, following its course eastward to Fort Colville ; thence along 
the Kootenay and Flathead Rivers, embracing Tobacco Plains, to 
the Kootenay pass in the Rocky Mountains. Its northern boundary 
was not defined, but reached to the Russian possessions on the 

clamation dated 2nd August, 1858, which constituted British Colum- 
bia a colony, defined that it should be bounded on 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 River and 
the Finlay branch of Peace River ; and to the west by the Pacific 
Ocean, including Queen Charlotte Islands, but no part of the colony 
of Vancouver Island. 

An Imperial Act was passed in 1863 to define more particularly 
the boundaries of the colony of British Columbia, specifying the 
western boundary to be the Pacific Ocean and the frontier of the 
Russian territories in North America ; the north to be the sixtieth 
parallel of latitude; and the east, the 120th meridian of west 
longitude and the summit of the Rocky Mountains. 

1863 expressed a desire to retire from public life, and his term of 
office terminating in 1864, was rewarded with the distinction of 
knighthood, by the Crown, for his services. CAPTAIN KENNEDY 
succeeded him as Governor of Vancouver Island, and retained 
that office until the union of the two colonies in 1866. 

SEYMOUR was appointed by the Imperial authorities to succeed 
Governor Douglas as Governor of British Columbia, which position 


he occupied until the union of the colonies in 1866. Thereafter Mr. 
Seymour continued as Governor of the United Colonies until his death 
in 1869. 

25. THE ROYAL CITY. The site of the present city of New West- 
minster was proclaimed the capital of the colony of British Columbia 
in 1859, but after the union of the colonies, a proclamation dated 
May 25th, 1868, declared the city of Victoria to be the seat of 

26. VICTORIA SURVEYED. Between the years 1859 and 1866, 
marked progress was made in and around the city of Victoria. 
Building operations and improvements were carried on everywhere. 
In 1852, the town was surveyed and laid out into streets; its 
boundaries then being the harbor on the west, the present Govern- 
ment Street on the east, Johnson Street on the north, and Fort 
Street on the south. In 1862, it is estimated that at least 1,500 
substantial buildings had been erected, where but two or three years 
previously the forest had stood. That same year the city was incor- 
porated, with a white population of over 3,500. In 1863, it had 
increased to 6,000, exclusive of the large number of miners who 
made it their winter headquarters. 

27. THE BEAUTIES OF VICTORIA. A prize essay on the resources 
and capabilities of Vancouver Island, by Charles Forbes, Esq., M.D., 
a surgeon on one of the ships of the navy at Esquirnalt, was published 
by the Government in 1862. It may not be out of place to quote 
his description of the neighborhood of Victoria as it appears in that 
publication. It reads : 

" On a clear, crisp, autumnal or spring morning, from the northern 
side, a beautiful and interesting scene meets the beholder's eye. 
Immediately before, and somewhat below, him, lies the town in 
repose, the only evidence of life the thin blue smoke which, from 
numerous hearths, floats upwards in the motionless air. The group- 
ing of the houses, with the tone of the coloring that prevails, is 
most pleasing. In the first faint light of the morning, the various 
styles of architecture assume fantastic shapes, pointed gables and 
ornamented roofs standing out clear and sharp ; the shadows dark 
neutral, the lights cool grey, the whole warmed by the depth of 
color of the brick houses and other edifices. Away on the left, in 
the east, Mount Baker and the Cascade Range have caught the 
sun's first rays, and a blush of pearly light is stealing over the 
heavens. The sea, still and unruffled, stretches over to the foot of 


the great Olympian range, which, clear and defined against the 
southern sky, stretches its massive dark blue length along, and far 
on the right, where hang the heavy clouds, night is gathering his 
mantle around him, and is disappearing in the west. 

28 "As the day passes on, and the sun approaches 

the zenith, the same clear, fresh air plays around, and an elasticity of 
mind and body is felt by all. The character of the scene has changed, 
however : a busy hum fills the air, and man is at his daily toil. The 
sea is like a mirror ; numerous tiny craft, with drooping sails, dot its 
surface, and seem at the same time suspended in the air by the 
refraction which elevates and brings into view the cliffs at Dunge- 
ness, reminding the observer of the chalk cliffs of old England. 

29. GLORIOUS LIGHT AND SHADE. " The mountain range has 
become a cloud; stretched along midway are lengthened lines of 
strati, drawn clear and sharp against the heavy dark blue mass, while, 
piled heap upon heap, resting on the lofty summits, are masses of 
cumuli and cumuloni, seeming fit abode for the Olympian Jove. As 
the sun goes west, cirri and cirro-strati begin to float off into the upper 
air, and before the warm westerly breeze the wondrous cloud dis- 
appears ; the light is reflected in sparkling rays from the waters of 
the winding reaches of the upper harbor ; the shadows become purple, 
and in the pine woods, black. The whole sky on the right is one 
blaze of crimson and deep orange hues ; and as the sun sinks in the 
western ocean, he pours a flood of yellow light along the narrow 
strait, such as Turner would have loved to paint ; touches the 
Olympian peaks with a rosy hue, and resting for a moment on the 
summit of the tower on the Race Rocks, with a golden gleam, seems 
there to leave ' the flashing light,' the seaman's safeguard against the 
dangers of the night." 

30. OTHER CITIES INLAND. It need not be supposed that VICTORIA 
is the only city in British Columbia which possesses beautiful natural 
scenery. The other cities which have sprung into existence since the 
foregoing description was written, also have delightful scenic sur- 
roundings. The Royal City NEW WESTMINSTER has a charming 
situation. On the south-eastern horizon, as far as the eye can reach, 
Mount Baker looms up in majestic grandeur to a height of nearly 
eleven thousand feet. Illuminated by the first rays of the morning 
sun, its silvery top is burnished with gold. Almost at the feet of the 
beholder flows the great Fraser River, abounding with several 
varieties of the best salmon, losing itself towards the right in the 


fertile delta, past Lulu Island. Looking up the river from classic 
Sapperton, the primitive camp of the Royal Engineers in early days, 
under Colonel Moody, the view is superb. On the left the " golden 
ears," and the massive "shoulders" of the coast range delight the gaze 
of the enraptured visitor. 

31. THE COAL MINES. The BLACK DIAMOND CITY (so named owing 
to its extensive coal mines) NANAIMO has many beautiful views- 
Built partly on a rugged promontory, it nestles in the bosom of a 
spacious bay, which is dotted with islands covered with verdure and 
evergreens to the water's edge. Its harbor is ample, and with its 
ships, shipping appliances, chutes and tramways for the accommoda- 
tion of the coal trade, presents an interesting picture of enterprise, 
industry and prosperity. In the back-ground, the Island range of 
mountains stands out in sufficient relief to give pleasing effect to 
that appearance of comfort and repose which seemingly belong to the 

32. VANCOUVER the terminal city of the great Canadian trans- 
continental railway although not ,yet in her teens, can, as well 
as her older sisters, boast of a panorama of great beauty. Towering 
mountains and peaks flank her spacious harbor and inlet. Neither 
have local adornments and improvements been neglected. Her parks 
and public buildings are most attractive, and are appreciated by 
travellers and visitors from all parts of the world. 

33. KAMLOOPS, and other rising cities in the interior of the 
Province, have their special natural attractions which require only 
to be seen to be admired. In fact, British Columbia may be termed 
a "land of mountain and of flood" similar in that respect to the 
mother, "Caledonia stern and wild." 

succeeded GOVERNOR SEYMOUR in 1869, and occupied the position of 
Governor until 1871, when British Columbia became an integral part 
of the Dominion of Canada. 

35. WHAT COMES AFTERWARDS? The warm, able and lengthy 
debates which immediately preceded the confederation of British 
Columbia with Canada, together with the events which have occurred 
since showing the progress and prosperity of the Province, will in due 
course be referred to in THE CONFEDERATION PERIOD. 

History of British Columbia. 




COOK'S THIRD VOYAGE. There are no other authentic records 
available for reference, regarding discoveries by Europeans or occu- 
pation by them, on that portion of the coast of North America which 
now forms the western frontier of Canada, until Captain Cook's third 
voyage, which dates from 1776. 

FOR THE BENEFIT OF MANKIND. The expedition for that voyage 
was fitted out by the British Admiralty, to continue the efforts which 
had been made by the Government of Great Britain to add to the 
knowledge already attained in science, navigation, geography, and the 
intercourse of mankind with each other. It consisted of the ships 
Resolution, of 462 tons burden, and 112 men under Captain JAMES 
COOK, and the Discovery, of 300 tons burden and 80 men, under 

His COMMISSION AND INSTRUCTIONS. Captain Cook received his 
commission to command the expedition on the 9th of February, 1776. 
His instructions were to proceed to the Pacific via Cape of Good 
Hope, touching at Otaheite and the Society Islands, and to commence 
his researches on the north-west coast of America, in latitude 65; 
and not to lose time in exploring inlets or rivers until he reached 
that latitude. The Resolution was not ready to sail from England 
until the llth of July. The Discovery sailed on the 1st of August, 
and overtook the Resolution at Cape of Good Hope on the 10th of 



had only returned in July, 1775, from his 
second voyage in the southern seas, where 
he was engaged in exploring the Antarctic 
regions and circumnavigating New Zealand. 
This work occupied three years and eighteen 
days. His success during that voyage was 
such that it is recorded that no expedition 
fitted out for the purpose of maritime dis- 
covery, had ever equalled that from which 
he had just returned, in the magnitude 
and arduous nature of its peculiar object. 
The Earl of Sandwich, who was at the head of the Admiralty, was 
disposed to reward liberally one whose courage and skill had so well 
justified the expectations of those who had patronized the under- 

His SERVICES APPRECIATED. Cook was immediately raised to the 
rank of post-captain, and obtained a more substantial mark of favor, 
being appointed one of the captains of Greenwich Hospital, which 
afforded him a liberal maintenance and repose from his professional 
labors. He was also elected a fellow of the Royal Society, and 
received the Society's medal for having performed the voyage just 
concluded with a company of 118 men, throughout all the climates, 
from latitude 52 N. to 71 S., with the loss of only one man by 

REWARD OF 20,000. A special object was in view by the 
Admiralty at this time relative to the plan to be adopted in this 
expedition, and as to who should be the commander. The hope of 
finding a north-west passage between the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans 
had not been abandoned. The Act of Parliament which had been 
passed in 1745, securing a reward of 20,000 to any of his Majesty's 
ships or subjects who should make the proposed discovery, at first 
only referred to ships passing through Hudson Bay, but had been 
amended to apply to ships passing in any direction. Consultations 
were held by Lord Sandwich with Sir Hugh Palliser and other 
experienced officers relative to the matter. Captain Cook, they 
admitted, had earned by his eminent services the privilege of honor- 
able repose, and no one thought of imposing on him foi; the third 
time, the dangers and hardships of a voyage of discovery round the 
world; i>ut being invited to dine with Lord Sandwich, in order that 


he might lend the light of his valuable experience to the various 
particulars under discussion, he was so iired with the observations 
that were made, that he voluntarily offered to take the command of 
it himself. 

REACHED NOOTKA, MARCH, 1778. Owing to great delay in visiting 
several South Sea islands, including Van Diemen's Land, New Zealand, 
tc., and leaving sheep, goats, and pigs on them for breeding purposes, 
Captain Cook did not reach the north-west coast of America until the 
7th of March, 1778, when land was seen from seventy to eighty 
miles distant, in latitude 44 33' N., and longitude 235 20' E. (Sic.) 
The previous day two sails and several whales were seen. Stormy 
weather made it necessary to stand to sea, and run southward to 
latitude 42 45'. Calms and storms tossed the mariners about until 
the 29th of March, when the Resolution anchored in Hope Bay, 
Nootka. The Discovery also arrived and anchored there the same 

SPEECHES AND SONGS. Canoes with natives soon gathered round 
the ships to the number of thirty-two, carrying from three to seven 
persons each, men and women. Their leaders made long speeches, 
but as not a word of them was understood, they soon ceased. One 
sung a very agreeable air with a degree of melody which was not 
expected. Although seemingly not afraid, none of them could be 
induced to come on board the ships. A group of about a dozen of 
the canoes remained alongside the Resolution the greater part of the 

LIEUTENANT JAMES KING. Next day Captain Cook sent out three 
armed boats, under the command of his lieutenant, Mr. James King, 
to search for a commodious harbor. A snug cove was found into 
which the ships were removed. On the day following they were 
moored, head and stern, fastening the hawsers to the trees on shore, 
and carpenters were set to work to make such repairs as were 

FIVE HUNDRED VISITORS. The fame of the arrival of the ships 
brought a great concourse of natives to see them. At one time there 
were about one hundred canoes, which were supposed to contain an 
average of five persons each, for few of them had less than three on 
board; many had seven, eight or nine, and one was manned with 
seventeen. Amongst the visitors were many who had arrived for the 
lirst time, as was judged from their orations and ceremonies as they 
approached the ships. 


ARTICLES FOR SALE AND BARTER. The distrust or fear which they 
showed at first was soon laid aside. They came on board the ships 
and mixed amongst the sailors with the greatest of freedom. It was 
soon discovered that they were expert thieves. In trade, however, they 
were strictly honest. The articles which they offered for sale or 
barter were the skins of bears, wolves, foxes, deer, raccoons, polecats, 
martins, and in particular the sea-otters. The narrative of the voyage 
states, that " besides the skins in their native state, they also brought 
garments made of them, and another sort of clothing made of the 
bark of a tree or some plant like hemp ; weapons, such as bows, 
arrows and speai-s, pieces of carved work, beads and several other 
little ornaments of thin brass and iron, shaped like a horseshoe, 
which they hang at their noses. But the most extraordinary of all 
the articles which they brought to the ships for sale were human 
skulls and hands, not yet quite stripped of the flesh, which they made 
our people plainly understand they had eaten ; and, indeed, some of 
them had evident marks that they had been upon the fire." 

VISIT TO A NATIVE VILLAGE. For a fortnight the weather con- 
tinued stormy. By the 19th of April, however, the top-masts, yard 
and rigging were again up. Next day being fair, a visit was made 
by Captain Cook and a party to the village at the west point of the 
sound. They found the people numerous and courteous. The houses 
were large, each containing several families. The methods of curing 
and drying fish were explained, mats were spread for the party to sit 
on, and every mark of civility shown. The party next proceeded up 
the west side of the sound for two miles, by an arm of the sea. 

A SURLY CHIEF. A mile farther they found the remains of a 
deserted village. From that point they crossed to the east side of the 
sound and landed at another village. There they met with rather a 
cold reception. The surly chief did not wish them to enter the 
houses. Presents were offered to him which he took, but they did 
not have much effect in changing his behavior. The young women 
of the village, 'however, showed more hospitality. They dressed 
themselves, the narrator relates, "expeditiously, in their best apparel, 
and welcomed us by joining in a song which was far from harsh or 

vessels were now nearly completed. By the 21st the mizzen-masf was 
finished and in its place and rigged. The following day some ten or 
twelve canoes arrived from the southward. At about two hundred 


yards from the ship they remained for about half an hour preparing for 
their introductory ceremony. They then advanced standing in their 
oanoes and began to sing, accompanying their notes with the most 
regular motion of their hands, or beating in concert with their 
paddles on the sides of the canoes, and making other very expressive 
gestures. Some of their songs were slow, others in quicker time. 
At the end of each song they remained silent for some time and 
ceased paddling, then again commencing they generally concluded by 
forcibly pronouncing the word " hooee ! " as a chorus. This pro- 
gramme continued for over half an hour, when they came alongside 
the ships and bartered what they had to dispose of. 

APPEARANCE OF THK NATIVES. The natives are described as " in 
general under the common stature, but not slender in proportion, 
being commonly pretty full or plump though not muscular. Both 
men and women are so encrusted with paint and dirt that their 
color could not positively be determined. The children, whose skins 
have never been stained by paint or discolored by smoke, are nearly 
as fair as Europeans. Their dress, made of mats and skins, is, upon 
the whole, convenient, and would by no means be inelegant were it 
kept clean; but as they rub their bodies over constantly with a red 
paint of a coarse ochrey or clayey substance, their garments contract 
a rancid, offensive smell, and a greasy nastiness, so that they make a 
very wretched dirty appearance." During Captain Cook's stay at 
Nootka, the weather continued more or less stormy; yet he and his 
officers made several excursions to various parts of the Sound, but 
only found two villages. Judging from the canoes seen around the 
ships, and other observations, he computed the inhabitants to number 
two thousand. 

PARTING TOKENS OF FRIENDSHIP. Being ready for sea on the 
26th of April, although the barometer was low, the moorings were 
cast off, the boats towed the ships out of the cove, attended by a large 
number of the natives, some on board and others in their canoes. 
One of the chiefs who had, some time before, become attached to 
Captain Cook, was about the last to leave the ship. In return for a 
small present given him, he gave a beaver skin of much greater value. 
Captain Cook made another small present to the chief, which pleased 
him so much that he insisted in giving in return the beaver skin 
cloak which he then wore. The narrator states : " Struck with this 
generosity, and desirous that he should be no sufferer by his 
friendship to me, I presented to him a new broadsword, with a brass 


hilt, the possession of which made him completely happy. He also, 
and many of his countrymen, importuned us to pay them another 
visit, and by way of encouragement promised to lay in a good stock 
of skins. I make no doubt that whoever comes to this place will tind 
the natives prepared with no inconsiderable supply of an article of 
trade which they could .observe we were eager to possess, and which 
we found could be purchased to great advantage." Thus was the 
foundation of the fur trade on the west coast laid in the most 
harmonious manner. 

THE VOYAOK NORTHWARDS. No sooner had the expedition left 
Nootka Sound than a gale sprung up. The storm continuing, they 
were obliged to bear away from the land northwesterly. Rough and 
hazy weather prevented them from again seeing land until the 1st of 
May. Kaye's island was reached, latitude 60, on the 10th, where 
Captain Cook landed, and states that " at the foot of a tree on a little 
eminence, not far from the shore, he left a bottle with a paper in 
it, on which were inscribed the names of the ships and the date of 
the discovery, along with two silver twopenny pieces of his Majesty's 
coin of the date 1772." From this point many landings and surveys 
were made by Lieutenant Gore, Mr. Roberts, one of the mates, and 
Surgeon Anderson, who attended to the scientific portion of the 
explorations. The intervening time, until August, was occupied in 
this work. Along the coast they found many native villages. The 
inhabitants generally were well disposed and willing to enter into 
trade, but required continual watching to keep in check their thieving 

A DIFFERENT TYPE OF NATIVES. In Prince William Sound the 
natives were found in dress, language and physical peculiarities, 
similar to the Esquimaux of Hudson Bay. Their canoes were not 
constructed out of one portion or trunk of a tree as at Nootka, the 
frame only being slender strips of wood, skins of seals or other 
animals, like the "oomyaks," or women's canoes of the Greenlanders, 
as described by the late Dr. Rae, of Arctic renown. The most 
westerly coast of the American continent was reached on the 9th 
August, distant only about seventy miles from the opposite shores 
of Asia. To this headland was given the name Cape Prince of 

THE ASIATIC COAST. Crossing the strait to the western shores, 
Captain Cook anchored near the coast, which he found to extend 
many degrees farther to the east than the position assigned hi 


the maps of that day. He thus ascertained distinctly the width 
of the strait which separates Asia from America; for though Behring 
had sailed through it before, he had not, owing to thick weather, 
seen the shores of the latter continent at that time. 

AMONG THE WALRUSES. Next proceeding eastward and north 
the navigators coasted along the west shore of America until 
the 19th of August, when, in latitude 7044', they saw ice before 
them, extending as far as the eye could reach, and forming a 
compact wall of about six feet high. On nearer approach the ice 
was found to be covered with multitudes of walruses or sea-horses. 
Cook's narrative says: "They lay in herds of many hundreds upon 
the ice, huddling one over the other like swine, and roar or bray 
very loud, so that in the night or foggy weather they gave us notice 
of the vicinity of ice before we could see it. We never found the 
whole asleep, some being always upon the watch and communicated 
the alarm to the others." The dimensions and weight of one of them 
is given : Length from the snout to the tail, 9 ft. 4 in. ; length of 
neck from snout to shoulder-bone, 2 ft. 6 in. ; height of shoulder, 
5 ft. ; length of fore-fin, 2 ft. 4 in. ; hind-fin, 2 ft. 6 in. ; breadth of 
fore-tin, 1 ft. 2| in. ; hind-tin, 2 ft. ; circumference of the neck close 
to the ears, 2 ft. 7 in. ; ditto, body at the shoulder, 7 ft. 10 in. ; 
ditto, near the hind-fins, 5 ft. 6 in. ; weight of carcass without the 
head, skin or entrails, 854 pounds; head, 41 J pounds; skin, 203 

CLOSE OF THE CRUISE NORTHWARDS. Before midnight a thick 
fog came on and the ships were surrounded with loose ice. The 
fog having cleared by ten o'clock next day, in latitude 6932', and 
the main body of ice not far distant, and with the Continent of 
America within five leagues' distance, the prospect of finding the 
north-west passage was improbable. Cruising until the 29th, large 
quantities of ice appeared northward. The narrative here states 
" that as the season was now so far advanced and frost expected 
soon to set in, it was not considered consistent with prudence to 
make further attempts to find a passage into the Atlantic." Capt. 
Cook then crossed to the Asiatic side. He had completed his 
mission and fulfilled his instructions. He concludes his narrative 
by saying : " We were now upwards of 520 leagues to the westward 
of any part of Baffin's or Hudson's Bay, and whatever passage there 
may be, or at least part of it, must lie to the north of latitude 72." 


ALONG THE EAST COAST OF RUSSIA. In September he shaped his 
course southwards, gathering much information on the Russian 
coast. About the end of October he left the Asiatic coast for the 
Sandwich Islands, which he made the rendezvous to meet Captain 
Clerke, in the event of the Discovery parting company with the 
Resolution on the voyage south. The Sandwich Islands were 
reached in January, 1779. 

DEATH OF CAPTAIN COOK. In February the great navigator was 
killed in a melee whilst assisting or directing a party of his men to 
recover one of the ship's boats that had been stolen by the natives. 
After Captain Cook's death the command devolved upon Captain 
Clerke. He removed on board the Resolution and appointed 
Lieutenant Gore to be captain of the Discovery. 

not arrive in England until October, 1780. The delay in returning 
is accounted for by Captain Clerke having, during the spring of 
1779, made another trip to Behring Sea to make a further attempt 
to find the north-west passage. He penetrated as far as 70 30' N"., 
when the same obstacles prevented his progress as were met by 
Captain Cook the preceding year. They encountered a firm barrier 
of ice seven leagues farther south than Captain Cook had. The. 
impossibility of finding a passage to the north was now thought 
to be sufficiently proved ; it was therefore resolved to proceed 

DEATH OF CAPTAIN CLERKE. When the ships leached Kamtschatka, 
Captain Cierke died of a decline. Captain Gore now succeeded to 
the command of the expedition, and Lieutenant King took command 
of the Discovery. The expedition, although successful in adding 
greatly to geographical knowledge and in opening up the fur trade of 
the North- West, returned to England in mourning, having lost both 
their commanders. They were replaced by able men. Some of the 
distinguished officers who served under Captain Cook and learned 
the arduous duties of their profession from him, such as Vancouver, 
Broughton, Bligh, Burney, Colnett. Portlock, Dixon, etc., afterwards 
became leading men in the nautical world, and shortly after the 
lamented death of Captain Cook, assisted in opening up the trade 
of the North-West and completing the explorations which he had 



EXPEDITIONS ORGANIZED. As soon as particulars of Captain Cook's 
voyage and discoveries, on the north-west coast of America were 
known, and that such a large supply of otter skins and other furs 
could be obtained from that hitherto unknown region, a spirit of 
adventure and commerce was created. In 1786, four expeditions 
were organized in different parts of the globe to engage in this new 
trade, without any knowledge of eacli other's designs. 

THE PIONEER TRADER. -The first to arrive on the north-west coast 
of America in connection with this new enterprise, was Captain 
JAMES HANNA. His vessel, a small craft of only seventy-two tons 
burden, with a crew of under thirty men, had been equipped in 
China, in 1784-85, by English merchants. This skilful seaman and 
brave commander pursued his course along the coast of Japan, thence 
eastwards until he reached Nootka in August, 1785. On arriving 
there, the natives, judging from the small size and appearance of the 
vessel compared with Captain Cook's outfit, made an attack upon 
Captain Hanna and his limited crew. They were, however, speedily 
repulsed. Hostilities were soon ended and a brisk trade commenced, 
which resulted in Captain Hanna obtaining a large number of sea-otter 
skins, which netted him $26,000 in China. 

HANNA'S SECOND AND LAST VOYAGE. Captain Hanna left Nootka 
in September. On his return northward he examined the coast, 
named Sea-otter Harbor and Fitzhugh Sound, reaching Macao in 
December. He made a second voyage to Nootka in 1786, in the Sea- 
otter^ a vessel of 120 tons; but two British ships having arrived 
before him, his second commercial venture was not nearly as 
profitable as that of the preceding year. Captain Meares, referring 


to Hanna's voyages, says : " Before he could engage in a third, this 
able and active seaman was called upon to take that voyage from 
whence there is no return." , 

referred to as arriving in 1786, were the Captain Cook and the 
Experiment, sailing under the flag of the East India Company, fitted 
out by Bombay merchants, David Scott being the principal owner. 
They were under the supervision of James Strange, and sailed from 
Bombay, arriving at Nootka in June, 1786. They obtained six 
hundred sea-otter skins. Returning they sailed northward, and 
probably gave the name Gape Scott to the north-western point 
of Vancouver Island after David Scott, the chief owner of the vessels. 
The expedition, at his own request, left one of their men, John 
McKay, at Nootka, under the chief's protection, to .act as a. 
"drummer "or agent for the fur-traders. He was well treated by 
the savages, and lived with a native wife for more than a year 
amongst them. 

Perouse, set out on an exploring expedition in 1785. His discoveries 
were published too late to be of special value, apart from that 
furnished by other navigators who visited those seas and wrote about 
what they had seen. Bancroft says: "Especially were his discoveries 
unimportant as touching the north-west coast." His explorations 
were made in 1786, but as his maps were not published until 1798, 
they were superseded by later and more complete surveys. 

LICENSED TO TRADE IN TEAS, ETC. Another expedition, formed by 
the ships King George and Queen Charlotte, left England in 1785. 
They were fitted out in London and placed under Lieutenant Portlock 
of the Royal Navy, with license from the South Sea Company to 
trade in teas from China. They were also supplied with large 
quantities of stores, and had appliances to " form factories," to 
build vessels, and had authority to make settlements. Both the 
commanders, Lieutenants Nathaniel Portlock and George Dixon, 
had previously served under Captain Cook, and were prepared to 
engage both in geographical discoveries as well as to attend to the 
fur trade. They sailed around Cape Horn and touched at the 
Sandwich Islands, reaching Cook's River in July, 1786. It was 
their intention then to coast southwards and winter at Nootka. 
After touching at various points from fifty-five degrees north to 


Nootka, the weather became stormy and the expedition returned 
to the Sandwich Islands to winter. 

PORTLOCK AND DIXON, 1786-87. Next season they left for Prince 
William Sound. By the end of July, Captain Dixon had reached 
the northern end of Queen Charlotte Islands, which he named after 
the vessel he commanded, as well as after the Queen of that name. 
He named the straits between the islands and the mainland, "Dixon's 
Straits," after himself. Captain Dixon received a large number of 
sea-otter skins (1,821) on Queen Charlotte Islands. The number of 
sea-otter skins obtained during the season by both vevssels is given at 
2,552, for which they received in China, $54,857. Bancroft states 
that the other traders for the season together only obtained 2,481 

CAPTAINS BARCLAY AND DUNCAN, 1787. The expeditions of the 
ships, Princess Royal, Captain Duncan, Prince of Wales, Captain 
Colnett, and The Imperial Eagle, Captain Barclay, arrived in 1787. 
The two former vessels were fitted out by the King George Sound 
Company, which had sent out Portlock and Dixon ; the latter 
sailed under the flag of the Austrian East India Company, in 1786, 
arriving at Nootka in 1787. Captain Barclay explored Barclay 
Sound, to which he gave his name. His boat, with an armed crew, 
explored the Straits of Fuca. He is said to have received much 
local information from the Mr. McKay who had been residing 
at Nootka amongst the Indians for over a year. Mrs. Barclay 
accompanied her husband on this voyage, and was probably the first 
European lady who visited the north-west coast of America. 

CAPTAINS KENDRICK AND GRAY, 1788. A large number of 
voyagers and navigators met at Nootka in 1788, amongst whom 
were Captain John Meares, of the Felice, Wm. Douglas, of the 
Iphigenia, John Kendrick, of the Columbia, Robert Gray, of the 
Lady Washington. The two latter vessels were the first that appeared 
under the flag of the United States on the waters of the North 
Pacific Ocean. They were equipped by Boston merchants and their 
crews called "Bostons," and as the war of the independence of the 
United States had just been concluded, the " Bostons " did not 
regard the " King George men " with the most friendly feeling. 

UNITED STATES FLAG, 1788. The first fur-trading expedition 
from the United States was fitted out by a company of six Boston 
merchants, who were influenced by the glowing reports of Captain 
Cook's discoveries and the possible trade with China. The voyage 



of the Lady Washington occupied a year from the time of leaving 
Boston until her arrival at Nootka. That vessel was towed into 
Nootka Sound by the aid of boats from the Felice and the Iphigenia, 
which were lying at anchor there. 

Captain John Meares, was a vessel of 230 
tons burden, with a crew of tifty men, 
comprising artificers, Chinese smiths 
and carpenters as well as European 
artizans; Iphigenia, Captain Douglas, 
a vessel of 200 tons burden, with a crew 
of forty men, composed of the same 
classes of people, artizans and sailors. 
Both ships were well built and copper- 
bottomed. " The Chinese were," Cap- 
tain Meares states, " shipped as an 


experiment ; they have been generally 

esteemed a hardy and industrious, as well as ingenious, race of people. 
They live 011 tish and rice, and, requiring but low wages, it was a 
matter of economical consideration to employ them, and during the 
whole voyage there was every reason to be satisfied with their ser- 
vices. The expense of fitting out the expedition was borne by several 
British merchants resident in India, in conjunction with Captain 
Meares, who had been formerly a lieutenant in the British navy. 
On the 13th of May, 1788, they reached Nootka and anchored abreast 
of the village in " Friendly Cove," in four fathoms of water, after a 
passage of three months and twenty-three days from China. They 
were well received by the natives. The principal chiefs, Maquilla 
and Callicum, were absent on a visit to Wican-an-ish, a powerful 
prince of a tribe to the southward. That locality is now known as 
Clayoquot Sound. 

MAQUILLA'S FLEET. "On the 16th of May," Captain Meares in 
his narrative states, " Maquilla and Callicum returned, and entered 
the cove accompanied by a number of war canoes. They moved or 
rowed (paddled) around the ship with great parade, singing at the 
same time a song of a pleasing though sonorous melody. Maquilla's 
fleet consisted of twelve war canoes, each of which contained about 
eighteen men ; the greater part of whom were clothed in the most 
beautiful skins of the sea otter, which covered them from their neck 
to their ankles. Their hair was powdered witli the white down of 
birds and their faces bedaubed with red and black ochre, in the form 
of a shark's jaw, and a kind of spiral line, which rendered their 


appearance extremely savage. In most of these boats there were 
eight rowers (paddlers) on a side, and a single man sat at the bow. 
The chief occupied a place in the middle, and was distinguished by a 
high cap, pointed, at the crown and ornamented at the top with a 
small tuft of feathers. 

INDIAN Music. " We listened to their song," continues Mr. 
Meares, " with an equal degree cf surprise and pleasure. It was, 
indeed, impossible for any ear susceptible of delight from musical 
sounds, or any mind that was not insensible to the power of melody, 
to remain unmoved by this solemn, unexpected concert. The chorus 
was in unison, and strictly correct as to time and tone ; nor did a 
dissonant note escape them. Sometimes they would make a sudden 
transition from the high to the low notes, with such melancholy 
turns in their variations, that we could not reconcile to ourselves the 
manner in which tl*;y acquired or contrived this more than untaught 
melody of nature. There was something for the eye as well as the 
ear, and the action which accompanied their voices added very much 
to the impression which the chanting made upon us all. Everyone 
beat time with undeviating regularity against the gunwale of the 
boat with their paddles, and at the end of every verse or stanza they 
pointed with extended arms to the north and to the south, gradually 
sinking their voices in such a solemn manner as to produce an effect 
not often attained by the orchestras in our quarter of the globe. 

OIL REFKESHMENTS. " They paddled around our ship twice in this 
manner, uniformly rising up when they came to the stern and calling 
out the word ' wacush, wacush,' or friends. They then brought their 
canoes alongside, when Maquilla and Callicum came on board. 
The former appeared to be about thirty years, of a middle size, but 
extremely well made and possessing a countenance that was formed 
to interest all who saw him. The latter seemed to be ten years 
older, of an athletic make, and a fine open arrangement of features, 
that united regard and confidence. The inferior people were very 
proper and personable men. A sealskin filled witli oil was immedi- 
ately handed on board, of which the chiefs took a small quantity., 
and they ordered it to be returned to the people in the canoes, who 
soon emptied the vessel of this luxurious liquor. 

of copper, iron and other gratifying articles, was made to Maquilla 
and Callicum, who on receiving it took off their sea-otter garments, 
threw them in the most graceful manner at our feet, and remained in 
the unattired garb of nature on the deck. They were each of them 
in turn presented with a blanket, when with every mark of the 
highest satisfaction, they descended into their canoes, which were 
paddled hastily to the shore. 

A BUILDING SITE SECURED. "Maquilla not only readily consented 
to grant us a spot of ground in his territory, whereon a house might 
be built for the accommodation of the people we intended to leave 
there, but had promised us also his assistance in forwarding our 


works and his protection of the party who were destined to remain 
at Nootka during our absence. In return for this kindness, and to 
insure a continuance of it, the chief was presented with a pair of 
pistols, which he had regarded with an eye of solicitation ever since 
our arrival. Callicum, who seemed to have formed a most affectionate 
attachment to us, was also gratified, as well as the ladies of his 
families, with suitable presents ; indeed it became our more immediate 
attention to confirm his regard, as he had been appointed by Maquilla 
to be our particular guardian and protector, and had the most 
peremptory injunctions to prevent the natives from making any 
depredations on us. 

HOUSE BUILDING PROGRESSES. " Great advances were made in 
building the house, which on the 28th was completely finished. In 
the very expeditious accomplishment of this important work, the 
natives afforded us all the assistance in their power, not only by 
bringing the timber from the woods, but by readily engaging in any 
and every service that was required of them. When the bell rang 
for our people to leave off work in the evening, the native laborers 
were always assembled to receive their daily pay, which was dis- 
tributed in certain proportions of beads and iron. Such a proceeding 
on our part won so much upon their regard and confidence, that we 
could not find employment for the numbers that continually solicited 
to engage in our service. The house was sufficiently spacious to 
contain all the party intended to be left on the Sound (Nootka). On 
the ground floor there was ample room for the coopers, sail makers 
and other artizans to work in bad weather ; a large room was set 
apart for the stores and provisions. The armorer's shop was attached 
to one end of the building and communicated with it. The upper 
story was divided into an eating-room and chambers for the party. 
On the whole, our house, though it was not built to satisfy a lover of 
architectural beauty, was admirably well calculated for the purpose 
to which it was destined, and appeared to be a structure of uncommon 
magnificence to the natives of King George's Sound. 

A FORTIFICATION ERECTED. "A strong breastwork was thrown 
up round the house, enclosing a considerable area of ground, which 
with one piece of cannon, placed in such a manner as to command 
the cove and village of Nootka, formed a fortification sufficient to 
secure the party from intrusion. 

THE NATIVES ARE FRIENDLY. "The good harmony and friendly 
intercourse which subsisted between us and the natives, will, we 
trust, be considered as a proof that our conduct was regulated by 
the principles of humane policy ; while the generous and hospitable 
demeanor of our faithful allies will convey a favorable idea of their 
character, when treated with that kindness which unenlightened 
nature demands, and is the true object' of commercial policy to 

of personal attachment which we received from many individuals of 


these people were sufficient to convince us that gratitude is a virtue 
well known on this distant shore, and that a noble sensibility to 
offices of kindness was to be found among the woods of Nootka. 
Callicuni possessed a delicacy of mind and conduct which would have 
done honor to the most improved state of our civilization. A thousand 
instances of regard and affection towards us might be related of this 
amiable man, who is now no more, and the only return that we can 
make for his friendship is to record it, and with every expression of 
horror and detestation of that inhuman and wanton spirit of murder 
which deprived his country of its brightest ornament, the future 
navigator of a protecting friend, and drove an unoffending and 
useful people from their native home to find a new habitation in the 
distant desert." 

the following explanatory note: "This amiable chief was shot 
through the body in the month of June, 1789, by an officer on board 
one of the ships of Don Martinez. The following particulars were 
received from the master of the North-West America, a young 
gentleman of the most correct veracity, who was himself a witness of 
the inhuman act : 

" Callicum, his wife and child, came in a small canoe alongside the 
Princessa, the commodore's ship, and the fa'sh being taken from him 
in a rough and unwelcome manner before he could present it to the 
commodore, the chief was so incensed at this behavior that he 
immediately left the ship, exclaiming as he departed, 'peshae, peshae, 5 
the meaning of which is 'bad, bad.' This conduct was considered so 
offensive that he was immediately shot through the heart by a ball 
from the quarter-deck. The body on receiving the ball sprung over 
the side of the canoe and immediately sank. The wife was taken 
with her child, in a state of stupefaction, to the shore by some of her 
friends, who were witnesses of this inhuman catastrophe. Shortly 
afterwards the father of Callicum ventured on board the Spanish 
ship to beg permission to creep for the body beneath the water, when 
this sad request of parental sorrow was refused till the poor afflicted 
savage had collected a sufficient number of skins among his neighbors 
to purchase of Christians the privilege of giving sepulture to a son 
whom they had murdered, The body was soon found and followed 
to its place of interment by the lamenting widow, attended by all 
the inhabitants of the Sound, who expressed the keenest sorrows for 
a chief whom they loved, and to those virtues it becomes our duty 
to give the grateful testimony of merited affection." 




EVIDENCE ON THE SUBJECT. The foregoing extracts will serve to 
show the animus of the Spaniards towards the natives, and will 
prepare the reader to expect little else from them than the outra- 
geous manner in which they treated Captain Meares's men and confis- 
cated and destroyed his property. The circumstances are fully 
explained in the memorial which he had presented to the British 
House of Commons on the 13th of May, 1790. The action which 
the British Government felt called upon to take to protect British 
subjects and their property ultimately resulted in securing to Great 
Britain the whole of the north-west coast, between what was at that 
time known as California and the Russian outposts. The evidence 
was so clear and strong that neither sophistry, subterfuge nor special 
pleading could maintain Spain in her extravagant claims. The docu- 
ments now submitted form the basis of the early history of British 
Columbia ; therefore they are given at some length : 

" The memorial of JOHN MEARES, Lieutenant in his Majesty's 
navy, most humbly sheweth : 

"That earlv in the year 1786, certain merchants residing in the 
East Indies, and under the immediate protection of the Company, 
desirous of opening a trade with the north-west coast of America for 
supplying the Chinese market with furs and ginseng, communicated 
such design to Sir John MacPherson, the Governor-General of India, 
who not only approved of the plan, but joined in the subscription for 
its execution, and two vessels were accordingly purchased and placed 
under the orders and command of your memorialist. 

"That in the month of March, your memorialist despatched one of 
the said vessels, which he named the Sea-otter, under the command 
of Mr. Tipping, to Prince William's Sound, and followed her on the 
other ship, which he named the Nootka. 

"That on your memorialist's arrival in Prince William's Sound, in 
the month of September, he found the Sea-otter had left that place a 
few days before ; and from intelligence he has since received, the ship 
was soon after unfortunately lost off the coast of Kamtschatka. 

" That your memorialist remained in Prince William's Sound the 


whole of the winter, in the course of which time he opened an 
extensive trade with the natives ; and having collected a cargo of 
furs, he proceeded to China in the autumn of 1787. 

"That in the month of January, 1788, your memorialist having 
disposed of the Nootka, he, in conjunction with several British 
merchants residing in India, purchased and fitted out two other 
vessels, named the Felice and Iphigenia ; the latter he put under the 
direction of Mr. William Douglas. That your memorialist proceeded 
from China to the port of Nootka, or King George's Sound, which he 
reached in the month of May, and the Iphigenia arrived in Cook's 
River in the month of June. 

" That your memorialist, immediately on his arrival in Nootka 
Sound, purchased from Maquilla, the chief of the district contiguous 
to and surrounding that place, a spot of ground whereon he built a. 


house for his occasional residence, as well as for the more convenient 
pursuit of his trade with the natives, and hoisted the British colors- 
thereon ; that he also erected a breast-work which surrounded the 
house, and mounted one 3-pounder in front. That having done 
so, your memorialist proceeded to trade on the coast, the Felice 
taking her route to the southwards, and the Iphigenia to the north- 
wards, confining themselves within the limits of 60 and 4530' 
north, and returned to Nootka Sound in the month of September. 
That on your memorialist's arrival there, his people whom he had 
left behind, had nearly completed a vessel, which, previous to his- 
departure, he had laid down ; and that the said vessel was soon after 
launched by your memorialist and called the North- West America^ 


measuring about forty tons, and was equipped with all expedition to 
assist him in his enterprises. 

" That during the absence of your memorialist from Nootka Sound 
he obtained from Wicananish, tbe chief of the district surrounding 
Port Cox and Port Essingham, situated in the latitudes 48 and 49, 
in consequence of considerable presents the promise of a free and 
-exclusive trade with the natives of the district, and also his permission 
to build any storehouses or other edifices which he might judge 
mecessary ; that he also acquired the same privilege of exclusive 
trade from Tatootche, the chief of the country bordering on the Straits 
<of Juan de Fuca, and purchased from him a tract of land within the 
said strait, which one of your memorialist's officers took possession of 
in the King's name, calling the same Tatootche, in honor of that chief 

"That the Iphigenia, in her progress to the southward, also 
visited several ports, and in consequence of presents to the chiefs of 
the country, her commander had assurances given to him of not only 
a free access, but of an exclusive trade upon that coast, no other 
European vessel having been there before her. 

" That your memorialist, on the 23rd of September, having 
collected a cargo of furs, proceeded in the Felice to China, leaving 
the Iphigenia and the North-West America in Nootka Sound, with 
orders to winter at the Sandwich Islands and to return to the coast 
in the spring. That your memorialist arrived in China early in the 
month of December, where he sold his cargo and also the ship Felice. 

"That a few days after your memorialist's arrival in China, the 
ships Prince of Wales and Princess Royal, fitted out from the port of 
London by Messrs. John and Cadman Etches & Co., came to Canton 
'from a trading voyage on the north-west coast of America ; and your 
memorialist, finding that they had embarked in this commerce under 
licenses granted to them by the East India and South Sea Companies, 
which would not expire until the year 1790 ; and apprehending at 
the same time that the trade would suffer by a competition, he and 
his partners associated themselves with the said Messrs. Etches A: 
Co., and a formal agreement was executed in consequence between 
your memorialist and Mr. John Etches, then supercargo of the two 
ships, making a joint stock of all the vessels and property employed 
in that trade ; and under that firm they purchased a ship, which had 
been built at Calcutta, and called her the Argonaut. 

" That the Prince of Wales, having been chartered to load teas for 
the East India Company, soon after returned to England : and the 
Princess Royal and Argonaut were ordered by your memorialist to 
sail for the coast of America, under the command of James Colnett, 
to whom the charge of all the concerns of the Company on the coast 
had been committed. 

" Mr. Colnett was directed to fix his residence at Nootka Sound, 
and with that view, to erect a substantial house on the spot which 
your memorialist had purchased in the preceding year. 

" That the Princess Royal and Argonaut, loaded with stores and 
provisions of all descriptions, with articles estimated to be sufficient 


for the trade for three years, and a vessel on board in frame, of about 
thirty tons burden, left China accordingly in the months of April and 
May^ 1789. They had also on board, in addition to their crews, 
several artificers of different professions and nearly seventy Chinese, 
who intended to become settlers on the American coast, in the service 
and under the protection of the associated Company. 

"That on the 24th April, 1789, the Iphigenia returned to Nootka 
Sound, and that the North- West America reached the place a few days 
after ; that they found on their arrival in that port two American 
vessels which had wintered there ; one of them was called the Columbia, 
the other the Washington ; that on the 29th of the same month the 
North-West America was despatched to the northward to trade, and 
ulso to explore the archipelago of St. Lazarus. 

"That on the 6th of May, the Iphigenia being then at anchor 
in Nootka Sound, a Spanish ship of war, called the Princessa, 
commanded by Don Stephen Joseph Martinez, mounting twenty-six 
guns, which had sailed from the port of San Bias in the Province of 
Mexico, anchored in Nootka Sound, and was joined on the 13th by a 
Spanish ' snow' (a vessel equipped with two masts, resembling the 
main and fore-masts of a ship, and a third small mast just abaft the 
main mast, carrying a try-sail) of sixteen guns, called the San Carlos, 
which vessel had also sailed from San Bias, loaded with cannon and 
other warlike stores. 

" That from the time of the arrival of the Princessa until the 14th 
of May, mutual civilities passed between Captain Douglas and the 
Spanish officers, and even supplies were obtained from Don Martinez 
for the use of the ship ; but on that clay he, Captain Douglas, 
was ordered on board the Princessa and, to his great surprise, was 
informed by Don Martinez that he had the king's orders to seize all 
ships and vessels he might find upon that coast, and that he, the 
commander of the Iphigenia, was then his prisoner ; that Don 
Martinez thereupon instructed his officers to take possession of the 
Iphigenia, which they accordingly did, in the name of his Catholic 
Majesty, and the officers and crew of that ship were immediately 
conveyed as prisoners on board the Spanish ships, where they were 
put in irons and otherwise ill-treated. 

" That as soon as the Iphigenia had been seized, Don Martinez 
took possession of the lands belonging to your memorialist, on which 
his temporary habitation before mentioned had been erected, hoisting 
thereupon the standard of Spain and performing such ceremonies as 
your memorialist understands are usual on such occasions ; declaring 
at the same time that all the lands comprised between Cape Horn 
and the sixtieth degree of north latitude did belong to his Catholic 
Majesty; he then proceeded to build batteries, storehouses, etc., in 
the execution of which he forcibly employed some of the crew of the 
Iphigenia, and many of them who attempted to resist were very 
severely punished. 

" That during the time the commander of the Iphigenia remained 
in captivity, he had frequently been urged by Don Martinez to sign 


an instrument, purporting, as he was informed (not understanding 
himself the Spanish language), that Don Martinez had found him at 
anchor in Nootka Sound, that he was at that time in great distress, 
that he had furnished him with everything necessary for his passage 
to the Sandwich Islands, and that his navigation had in no respect 
been molested or interrupted ; but which paper, on inspection of a 
copy thereof delivered to Mr. Douglas, appears to be an obligation 
from him and Mr. Viana, the second captain, on the part of their 
owners, to pay on demand the valuation of that vessel, her cargo, etc., 
in case the viceroy of New Spain should adjudge her to be a lawful 
prize for entering the port of Nootka without the permission of his 
Catholic Majesty, and he frequently refused to accede to this propo- 
sal ; but that Don Martinez, partly by threats and partly by promises 
of restoring him to his command and of furnishing him with such 
supplies of stores and provisions as he -might stand in need of,, 
ultimately carried his point ; and having so done, he, on the 26th of 
the same month, was restored to the command of the Iphigenia, but 
restrained from proceeding to sea until the return of the North-West 
America, insisting that he should then dispose of her for four hundred 
dollars, the price which one of the American captains had set upon 

'.'That during the time the Spaniards held possession of the 
Iphigenia, she was stripped of all the merchandise which had 
been provided for trading, as also of her stores, provisions, nautical 
instruments, charts, etc., and, in short, every other article (excepting 
twelve bars of iron) which they could conveniently carry away, even 
to the extent of the master's watch and articles of clothing. 

"That notwithstanding what had been insisted on by Don Martinez, 
respecting the sale of the North- West America, he had constantly 
refused to dispose of that vessel on any ground, alleging that, as she 
did not belong to him, he had no right to dispose of her; that the 
North-West America not returning so soon as was expected, he, 
Captain Douglas, was told by Don Martinez, that on his ordering 
that vessel to be delivered to him for the use of his Catholic Majesty, 
he should have liberty to depart with the Iphigenia; that he 
accordingly on the 1st of June, wrote a letter to the master of the 
North-West America, but cautiously avoided any directions to the 
effect desired, and availing himself of Don Martinez's ignorance of 
the English language, he instantly sailed from Nootka Sound, though 
in a very unn't condition to proceed on such a voyage, leaving behind 
him the two American vessels, which had been suffered to continue 
there unmolested by the Spaniards from the time of their first 
arrival; that the Iphigenia proceeded from thence to the Sandwich 
Islands, and after obtaining there such supplies as they were able to- 
procure with the iron before mentioned, returned to China and 
anchored there in the month of October, 1789. 

"Your memorialist thinks it necessary to explain, that in order ta 
evade the excessive high port charges demanded by the Chinese from 


all other European nations excepting the Portuguese, he and his 
associates had obtained the name of Juan Cawalho to their firm, 
though he had no actual concern in their scock ; that Cawalho, though 
by birth a Portuguese, had been naturalized at Bombay, and had 
resided there for many years under the protection of the East India 
Company, and had carried on an extensive trade from thence to their 
several settlements in that part of the world. 

" That the intimacy subsisting between Cawalho and the Governor 
of Macao, had been the principal cause of their forming this nominal 
connection ; and that Cawalho had in consequence obtained his 
permission that the two ships above mentioned, in case should it be 
found convenient to do so, should be allowed to navigate under, or 
claim any advantages granted to, the Portuguese flag. 

"That this permission had answered the purpose of your memorial- 
ist, so far as respected the port charges of the Chinese, until the 
return of the Iphigenia ; but the Portuguese governor dying soon 
after her departure, and Cawalho becoming a bankrupt, his creditors 
demanded an interest in that ship ; that the governor had, in 
consequence, investigated the transaction, and finding that Cawalho 
had no actual concern or interest in the property, obliged her to 
quit the port : that this proceeding had subjected the Iphigenia at 
once to the increased port charges which were instantly demanded by 
and paid to the Chinese. 

" Your memorialist has stated this transaction thus fully, in order 
to show that the Iphigenia and her cargo were actually and bonafide 
British property, as well as to explain the occasion of the orders 
which were given to her commander (extracts of which accompany 
this, and are referred to in the journal of that ship, having been 
under. the inspection of Don Martinez). 

"Your memorialist further begs to state that after the departure 
of the Iphigenia, Don Martinez became apprized of the letter with 
which he had been furnished, and that on the return of the North- 
West America off the port of Nootka, on the 9th of June, she was 
boarded and seized by boats manned and equipped for war, com- 
manded by Don Martinez; that he did tow and convey the said 
vessel into the sound, and anchoring her close to the Spanish ships 
of war, did then take possession of her in the name of his Catholic 
Majesty as good and lawful prize ; that the above mentioned vessel 
was soon after hauled alongside of the Spanish frigate ; and that the 
officers and men, together with the skins which had been collected, 
amounting to 215, of the best quality, and also her stores, tackle 
and furniture, articles of trade, etc., were removed on board the 
Spanish frigate ; that the commander of the North- West America, 
his officers and men, were accordingly made prisoners, and Mr. 
Thomas Barnett, one of the officers of that vessel, and some of her 
men, were, as appears by the affidavit of William Graham, one of the 
seamen belonging to that vessel, afterwards put in irons. 

" That the Princess Royal arriving a few days after the seizure of 


the North-West America, and being allowed to depart, the skins 
collected by the last mentioned vessel (excepting twelve of the best 
quality, which Don Martinez thought tit to retain) were returned to 
the master, and, with the permission of Don Martinez, were shipped 
on board the Princess Royal for the benefit of the owners ; and that 
ship, as appears by her journal, put to sea on the 2nd of July to 
pursue the trade upon the coast. 

"That Don Martinez, after seizing the North-West America in the 
manner and under the circumstances above stated, employed her on 
a trading voyage, from which she returned after an absence of about 
twenty days, with seventy-iive skins obtained by British merchan- 
dise which had either been found in that vessel at the time of her 
capture, or had been taken from the Iphiyenia ; and that the value 
of the furs so collected cannot, upon a moderate calculation, be 
estimated at less than $7,500, and which Don Martinez had applied 
to his own advantage. 

"That the Argonaut arrived off the port of Nootka on or about 
the 3rd of July, 1789; that Don Martinez, on observing her in the 
offing, boarded her in his launch and with expressions of civility, 
promised Mr. Colnett, her commander, every assistance in his power; 
that before the Argonaut entered the sound, Mr. Thomas Barnett 
(who belonged to the North- West America, and was then a prisoner) 
came off in a canoe and informed Mr. Colnett of the proceedings 
which had taken place, and of the danger to which he was exposed ; 
but that under the assurances given by Don Martinez that the 
Argonaut should remain unmolested, and being in want of refresh- 
ments for the crew, Mr. Colnett proceeded into Nootka Sound. 

" That, notwithstanding the assurances given by Don Martinez, 
lie, the next day, sent the lieutenant of the Princessa with a military 
force to take possession of the Argonaut ; and that ship was accord- 
ingly seized in the name of his Catholic Majesty ; the British flag 
was hauled down and the Spanish flag was hoisted in its stead. 

"That on the seizure of the Argonaut, her officers and men were 
made prisoners, and Mr. Colnett was threatened to be hanged at the 
yard-arm in case of his refusing compliance with any directions 
which might be given to him. 

"That on the 13th of July, the Princess Royal, as stated in her 
journal, again appeared off the port of Nootka ; that her commander 
approaching the sound in his boat in expectation of finding there the 
commander of the expedition (from whom he was desirous of 
receiving instructions for his future proceedings), was seized and 
made prisoner by Don Martinez, and, under threats of hanging him 
at the yard-arm, forced him to send orders to his officers to deliver 
up the Princess Royal without contest. 

" That a Spanish officer was despatched into the offing with these 
orders, and that the vessel was accordingly seized in the name of his 
Catholic Majesty and brought into port ; that her crew were in 
consequence made prisoners, and that her cargo, consisting of 473 


skins, including 203 which had been put on board her from the 
North-West America, was seized. 

"That Mr. Colnett, from the circumstances of his capture, became 
so deranged that he attempted frequently to destroy himself, and 
that, according to the last accounts received, the state of his mind 
was such as to render him unfit for the management of any business 
which might have been entrusted to his care ; that in this melancholy 
situation, however, Don Martinez, notwithstanding the vessel and 
cargo had before been formally seized, attempted to procure from him 
the sale of the copper, of which a principal part of the cargo of the 
Princess Royal had been composed, and that such sale would actually 
have taken place had not the other officers of that vessel, seeing 
Colnett's insanity, prevented it. 

"Your memorialist further begs leave to represent that the 
American ship Columbia, intending to proceed to China, the crew 
of the North- West America were ordered by Don Martinez on board 
her, principally, as your memorialist understands, for the purpose of 
assisting in her navigation to China ; the greater part of her crew, 
as well as of her provisions, having been previously put on board the 
Washington in order that she might be enabled to continue on the 

"That the Columbia having reduced her provisions considerably 
from the supplies she had spared to her consort, was furnished from 
the Argonaut by order of Don Martinez with what was necessary for 
her voyage, said to be intended, however, for the supply of the North- 
West America ; that previous to the departure of the Columbia, 
ninety-six skins were also put on board her to defray the wages of the 
officers and crew of the North-West America, under a supposition 
that their late employers would be unable to liquidate their demands,, 
first deducting, however, thirty per cent, from the sales, which Don 
Martinez had agreed should be paid for the freight on the said skin& 
to the American commanders. 

"That the Columbia thus supplied, left Nootka Sound accordingly,, 
and proceeded to the southward ; that a few days after she entered, 
Port Cox, where she was joined by her consort, the Washington, from 
whom she received a considerable number of skins, conceived to be 
the whole, excepting the ninety-six before mentioned, which had 
been collected by the Spaniards as well as by British traders, and 
with which, after sparing a further quantity of provisions to the 
Washington, the Columbia proceeded to China, where she arrived on 
the 2nd of November, and landed the crew of the North-West 
A merica. 

"That the crew of the North-West America saw the Argonaut 
proceed as a prize to San Bias ; that her officers and men, who were 
Europeans, were put on board her as prisoners ; that the Princess 
Royal was shortly to follow with her crew in confinement in the 
same manner. The Washington, on joining the Columbia in Port 
Cox. gave information that the Princess Royal had also sailed for 
San Bias. 


" That Don Martinez had thought tit, however, to detain the 
Chinese and had compelled them to enter into the service of Spain, 
and that on the departure of the Columbia they were, employed in 
the mines, which had then been opened on the lands which your 
memorialist had purchased. 

" Your memorialist begs leave to annex a statement of the actual 
as well as the probable losses which he and his associates have 
sustained from the unwarrantable and unjustifiable proceedings of 
Don Martinez, in open violation of the treaty of peace subsisting 
between this country and the Court of Spain, and at times and in 
situations where, according to the common laws of hospitality, they 
might have expected a very different conduct. 

"Your memorialist therefore most humbly begs leave to submit 
the case of himself and his associates to the consideration of the 
Government, in full confidence that the proper and necessary 
measures will be taken to obtain that redress which he and his 
associates have, as British subjects, a right to expect. 

" (Signed) JOHN MEARES. 

"LONDON, 30th April, 1790." 

LOSSES BY CAPTAIN MEARES. The statement referred to in the 
foregoing memorial places the actual losses, given in detail, at 
$153,433, and the probable losses at $500,000. 

Prompt action was taken by the British Government relative to 
the high handed proceedings of the Spaniards. On the 25th of May, 
1790, the following message from his Majesty King George III., 
relative to the capture of certain vessels by the Spaniards in Nootka 
Sound, was presented to both Houses of Parliament : 

has received information that two vessels belonging to his Majesty's 
subjects, and navigated under the British flag, and two others, of 
which the description is not hitherto sufficiently ascertained, have 
been captured at Nootka Sound, on the north-western coast of 
America, by an officer commanding two Spanish ships of war ; that 
the cargoes of the British vessels have been seized, and their officers 
and crews have been sent as prisoners to a Spanish port. 

" The capture of one of these vessels had before been notified by 
the ambassador of his Catholic Majesty, by order of his court, who 
at the same time desired that measures might be taken for preventing 
his Majesty's subjects from frequenting these coasts, which were 
alleged to have been previously occupied and frequented by the 
subjects of Spain. Complaints were already made of the fisheries 
carried on by his Majesty's subjects in the seas adjoining to the 
Spanish continent, as being contrary to the rights of the crown of 
Spain. In consequence of this communication, a demand was 
immediately made by his Majesty's order, for adequate satisfac- 


tion, and for the restitution of the vessel, previous to any other 

"By answer from the Court of Spain it appears that this vessel 
and her crew had been set at liberty by the viceroy of Mexico; but 
this is represented to have been done by him on the supposition that 
nothing but the ignorance of the rights of Spain encouraged the 
individuals of other nations to come to these coasts for the purpose 
of making establishments, or carrying on trade, and in conformity to 
his previous instructions, requiring him to show all possible regard to 
the British nation. No satisfaction is made or offered, and a direct 
claim is asserted by the Court of Spain to the exclusive rights of 
sovereignty, navigation and commerce in the territories, coasts and 
seas in that part of the world. 

" His Majesty has now directed his minister at Madrid to make a 
fresh representation on this subject, and to claim such full and 
adequate satisfaction as the nature of the case evidently requires. 
And under these circumstances his Majesty, having also received 
information that considerable armaments are carrying on in the ports 
of Spain, has judged it indispensably necessary to give orders for 
making such preparations as may put it in his Majesty's power to 
act with vigor and effect in support of the honor of his crown and 
the interests of his people. And his Majesty commends it to his 
faithful Commons, on whose zeal and public spirit he has the most 
perfect reliance, to enable him to take such measures and to make 
such augmentation of his forces, as may be eventually necessary for 
this purpose. 

"It is his Majesty's earnest wish that the justice of his Majesty's 
demands may ensure from the wisdom and equity of his Catholic 
Majesty the satisfaction which is so unquestionably due ; and that 
this aflair may be terminated in such a manner as may prevent any 
grounds of misunderstanding in future, and to continue and confirm 
that harmony and friendship which has so happily subsisted between 
the two courts, and which his Majesty will always endeavor to 
maintain and improve by all such means as are consistent with the 
dignity of his Majesty's crown and the essential interests of his 
subjects. G. R," 

26th May an " humble address of the Right Honorable the Lords 
Spiritual and Temporal, in parliament assembled," was passed, 
approving of his Majesty's message. 




THE SPANISH REPLY. The Court of Spain was immediately com- 
municated with. This brought out the following elaborate document 
from Count Florida Blanca, the Spanish minister : 

MEMORIAL OF THE COURT OF SPAIN, delivered June 13th, 1790, to 
Mr. Fitzherbert, the British ambassador at Madrid : 

" By every treaty upon record betwixt Spain and the other nations 
of Europe, for upwards of two centuries, an exclusive right of 
property, navigation and commerce to the Spanish West Indies has 
been universally secured to Spain, England having always stood 
forth in a particular manner in support of such right. 

" By Article 8th of the Treaty of Utrecht (a treaty in which all 
the European nations may be said to have taken part), Spain and 
England profess to establish it as a fundamental principle of agree- 
ment, that the navigation and commerce of the West Indies, under the 
dominion of Spain, shall remain in the precise situation in which they 
stood in the reign of his Catholic Majesty Charles II., and that rule 
shall be invariably adhered to, and be incapable of infringement. 

" After this maxim, the two powers stipulated that Spain should 
never grant liberty or permission to any nation to trade or introduce 
their merchandise into Spanish American dominions, nor to sell, cede, 
or give up to any other nation, its lands, dominions or territories, or 
any part thereof. On the contrary, and in order that its territories 
should be preserved whole and entire, England offers to aid and 
assist the Spaniards in re-establishing the limits of their American 
dominions, and placing them in the exact situation they stood in the 
time of his said Catholic Majesty Charles II., if by accident it shall 
be discovered that they have undergone any alteration to the prejudice 
of Spain, in whatever manner or pretext such alteration may have 
been brought about. 

" The vast extent of the Spanish territories, navigation and 
dominion on the Continent of America, isles and seas contiguous to 
the South Sea, are clearly laid down and authenticated by a variety 
of documents, laws and formal acts of possession in the reign of King 
Charles II. It is also clearly ascertained, that notwithstanding the 
repeated attempts made by adventurers and pirates on the Spanish 
coasts of the South Sea and adjacent islands, Spain has still preserved 
her possessions entire, and opposed with success those usurpations by 
constantly sending her ships and vessels to take possession of such 


settlements. By these measures and reiterated acts of possession, 
Spain has preserved the dominion, which she has extended to the 
borders of the Russian establishments in that part of the world. 

"The viceroys of Peru and New Spain having been informed that 
these seas had been, for some years past, more frequented than 
formerly; that smuggling had increased; that several usurpations 
prejudicial to Spain and the general tranquillity had been suffered to 
be made, they have orders that the western coasts of Spanish America, 
and islands and seas adjacent should be more frequently navigated 
and explored. 

" They were also informed that several Russian vessels were upon 
the point of making commercial establishments upon that coast. At 
the time that Spain demonstrated to Russia the inconveniences 
attendant upon such encroachments, she entered upon the negotiation 
with Russia upon the supposition that the Russian navigators of the 
Pacific Ocean had no orders to make establishments within the limits 
of Spanish America, of which the Spaniards were the first possessors 
(limits situated within Prince William Sound), purposely to avoid all 
dissentions, and in order to maintain the harmony and amity which 
Spain wished to preserve. 

"The Court of Russia replied, that it had already given orders 
that its subjects should make no settlement in places belonging to 
other powers ; and that if those orders had been violated, and had 
any been made in Spanish America, they desired the king would put 
a stop to them in a friendly manner. To this pacific language on 
the part of Russia, Spain observed that she could not be answerable 
for what her officers might do at that distance, whose general orders 
and instructions were not to permit any settlements to be made by 
other nations an the Continent of Spanish America. 

" Though trespasses had been made by the English on some of the 
islands of those coasts, which had given rise to similar complaints 
having been made to the Court of London, Spain did not know 
that the English had endea\ored to make any settlements on the 
northern part of the Southern Ocean, till the commander of a Spanish 
ship, in the usual tour of the coasts of California, found two American 
vessels in St. Lawrence, or Nootka Harbor, where he was going for 
provisions and stores. These vessels he permitted to proceed on their 
voyage, it appearing from their papers that they were driven there by 
distress, and only came in to refit. 

"He also found there the Iphigenia from Macao, under Portuguese 
colors, which had a passport from the governor ; and though he came 
manifestly with a view to trade there, yet the Spanish admiral, when 
he saw his instructions, gave him leave to depart upon his signing an 
engagement to pay the value of the vessel, should the Government of 
Mexico declare it a lawful prize. 

" With this vessel there came a second, which the admiral detained, 
and a few days after, a third, named the Argonaut, from the above 
mentioned place. The captain of this latter was an Englishman. 
He came not only to trade, but brought everything with him proper 


to form a settlement there and to fortify it. This, notwithstanding 
the remonstrances of the Spanish admiral, he persevered in, and was 
detained, together with his vessel. 

" After him came a fourth English vessel, named the Princess 
Royal, and evidently for the same purposes. She likewise was 
detained and sent to Port St. Bias, where the pilot of the Argonaut 
made away with himself. 

" The viceroy, on being informed of these particulars, gave orders 
that the captain and vessels should be released, and that they should 
have leave to refit, without declaring them a lawful prize ; and this 
he did. on account of the ignorance of the proprietors, and the friend- 
ship which subsisted between the Courts of London and Madrid. 

" He also gave them leave to return to Macao with their cargo, 
after capitulating with them in the same manner as with the Portu- 
guese captain, and leaving the affair to be finally determined by the 
Count de Revillagigado, his successor, who also gave them their liberty. 

u As soon as the Court of Madrid had received an account of the 
detention of the first English vessel at Nootka Sound, and before that 
of the second arrived, it ordered its ambassador at London to make a 
report thereof to the English minister, which he did on the 10th of 
February last, and to require that the parties who had planned these 
expeditions should be punished, in order to deter others from making 
settlements on territories occupied and frequented by the Spaniards 
for a number of years. 

" In the ambassador's memorial, mention was only made of the 
Spanish admiral that commanded the present armament, having 
visited Nootka Sound in 1774, though that harbor had been frequently 
visited both before and since, with the usual forms of taking possession. 
These forms were repeated more particularly in the years 1755 and 
1779, all along the coasts, as far as Prince William's Sound, and it 
was these acts that gave occasion to the memorial made by the Court 
of Russia as has been already noticed. 

"The Spanish ambassador 'at London did not represent in this 
memorial at that time, that the right of Spain to these coasts was 
conformable to ancient] boundaries which had been guaranteed by 
England at the Treaty of Utrecht, in the reign of Charles II., deem- 
ing it to be unnecessary ; as orders had been given and vessels had 
actually been seized on those coasts as far back as 1692. 

' ; The answer that the English ministry gave, on the 26th of 
February, was, that they had not as yet been informed of the facts 
stated by the ambassador, and that the act of violence, mentioned in 
his memorial, necessarily suspended any discussion of the claims 
therein, till an adequate atonement had been made for a proceeding 
so injurious to Great Britain. 

" In addition to this haughty language of the British minister, he 
further added, that the ship must in the first place be restored ; and 
that with respect to any further stipulations, it would be necessary 
to wait for a fuller detail of all the circumstances of this affair. 

"The harsh and laconic style .in which this answer was given, 


made the Court of Madrid suspect that the King of Great Britain's 
ministers were forming other plans ; and they were the more induced 
to think so, as there were reports that they were going to fit out two 
fleets, one for the Mediterranean and the other for the Baltic. This 
of course obliged Spain to increase the small squadron she was 
getting ready to exercise her marine. 

"The Court of Spain then ordered her ambassador at London to 
present a memorial to the British ministry,, setting forth that though 
the Crown of Spain has an indubitable right to the continent, islands, 
harbors and coasts in that part of the world, founded on treaties and 
immemorial possession, yet the viceroy of Mexico had released the 
vessels that were detained, tlws king looked upon the affair as 
concluded, without entering into any disputes or discussions on 
the undoubted rights of Spain ; and desiring to give a proof of his 
friendship for Great Britain, he should rest satisfied if she ordered 
that her subjects in future respected those rights. 

"As if Spain, in this answer, had laid claim to the empire of 
that ocean, though she only spoke of what belonged to her by 
treaties, and as if it had been so grievous an offence to terminate 
this affair by restitution of the only vessel which was then known 
to have been taken, it excited such clamor and agitation in the 
parliament of England that the most vigorous preparations for war 
had been commenced ; and those powers disinclined to peace, charge 
Spain with designs contrary to her known principles of honor and 
probity as well as to the tranquillity of Europe, which the Spanish 
monarch had in view. 

" While England was employed in making the greatest armaments 
and preparations, that court made answer to the Spanish ambassador 
(upon the 5th of May) that the acts of violence committed against 
the British flag 'rendered it necessary for the sovereign to charge 
his minister at Madrid to renew the remonstrances (being the answer 
of England already mentioned), and to require that satisfaction which 
his Majesty thought he had an indisputable right to demand.' 

" To this was added a declaration not to enter formally into the 
matter until a satisfactory answer was obtained ; ' and at the same 
time the memorial of Spain should not include in it the question of 
right,' which formed a most essential part of the discussion. 

"The British administration offer, in the same answer, to take 
the most effectual and pacific measures that the English subjects 
shall not act 'against the just and acknowledged rights of Spain, but 
that they cannot at present accede to the pretensions of absolute 
sovereignty, commerce and navigation which appeared to be the 
principal object of the memorial of the ambassador, aud that the 
King of England considers it as a duty incumbent upon him to 
protect his subjects in the enjoyment of the right of continuing their 
fishery in the Pacific Ocean.' 

"If this pretension is found to trespass upon the ancient boundaries 
laid down in the reign of King Charles II. and guaranteed by 


England in the Treaty of Utrecht, as Spain believes, it appears that 
that court will have good reason for disputing and opposing this 
claim ; an 1 it is to be hoped that the equity of the British 
administration will suspend and restrict it accordingly. 

" In consequence of the foregoing answer, the charge d'affaires from 
the Court of London at Madrid insisted, in a memorial of the IGth of 
May, on restitution of the vessel detained at Nootka and the property 
therein contained; of an indemnification for the losses sustained, and 
on a reparation proportioned to the injury done to the English 
subjects trading under the British flag, and that they have an 
indisputable right to the enjoyment of a free and uninterrupted 
navigation, commerce and fishery;* and to the possession of such 
establishments as they should form with the consent of the natives 
of the country not previously occupied by any of the European 

"An explicit and prompt answer was desired upon this head, in 
such terms as might tend to calm the anxieties and to maintain the 
friendship subsisting between the two courts. 

" The charge d'affaires, having observed that a suspension of the 
Spanish armaments would contribute to tranquillity upon the terms 
to be communicated by the British administration, an answer was 
made by the Spanish administration that the king was sincerely 
inclined to disarm upon the principles of reciprocity, and proportioned 
to the circumstances of the two courts, adding that the Court of 
Spain was actuated by the most pacific intentions and a desire to 
give every satisfaction and indemnification, if justice was not on 
their side, provided England did as much if she was found to be in 
the wrong. 

"This answer must convince all the courts of Europe that the 
conduct of the king and his administrators is consonant to the 
invariable principles of justice, truth and peace. 


Mr. FITZHERBERT replied as follows : 

"SiR, In compliance with your Excellency's desire, I have now 
the honor to communicate to you in writing what I observed to you 
in the conversation we had the day before yesterday. The substance 
of these observations are briefly these : 

" The Court of London is animated with the most sincere desire of 
terminating the difference that at present subsists between it and the 
court of Madrid, relative to the port of Nootka and the adjacent 
latitudes, by a friendly negotiation ; but it is evident, upon the 
clearest principles of justice and reason, that an equal negotiation 
cannot be opened till matters are put in their original state ; and 
as certain acts have been committed in the latitudes in question 
belonging to the royal marine of Spain, against several British 
vessels, without any reprisals having been made, of any sort, on the 
part of Britain, that power is perfectly in the right to insist, as a 
preliminary condition, upon a prompt and suitable reparation for 


those acts of violence ; and in consequence of this principle, the 
practice of nations has limited such right of reparation to three 
articles, viz., the restitution of the vessels, a full indemnification for 
the losses sustained by the parties injured, and, finally, satisfaction 
to the sovereign for the insult offered to his flag ; so that it is 
evident that the actual demands of my court, far from containing 
anything to prejudice the rights or dignity of his Catholic Majesty, 
amount to no more, in fact, than what is constantly done by Great 
Britain herself, as well as every other maritime power, in similar 

"Finally, as to the nature of the satisfaction which the Court of 
London exacts upon this occasion and to which your Excellency 
appears to desire some explanation, I am authorized, sir, to assure 
you that if his Catholic Majesty consents to make a declaration in 
his name, bearing in substance that he had determined to offer to 
his Britannic Majesty a just and suitable satisfaction for the insult 
offered to his flag, such offer joined to a restitution of the vessels 
captured, and to indemnify the proprietors, under the conditions 
specified in the official letter of Mr. Merry on the 16th of May, will 
be regarded by his Britannic Majesty as constituting in itself the 
satisfaction demanded ; and his said Majesty will accept of it as 
such by a counter-declaration on his part. 

" I have to add that as it appears uncertain if the vessels, the 
North- West America, an American vessel, and the Iphiyenia, had 
truly a right to enjoy the protection of the British flag, the king will 
with pleasure consent that an examination of the question, as well as 
that relative to the just amount of the losses sustained by his 
subjects, may be left to the determination of the commissioners to 
be named by the two courts. 

" Having thus recapitulated to your Excellency the heads of what 
I observed to you in conversation, I fatter myself you will weigh 
the whole in your mind with that spirit of equity and moderation 
which characterizes you, that I may be in a condition of sending to 
my court, as soon as possible, a satisfactory answer as to the point 
contained in the official paper sent to Mr. Merry on the 4th of this 
month, and which for the reasons I have mentioned cannot be 
regarded by his Britannic Majesty as fulfilling his just expectations. 
I have the honor to be, etc., 


SPAIN AND FRANCE FAMILY COMPACT.- -At this critical juncture in 
the history of Spain, in virtue of the Family Compact which existed, 
France came forward to support her neighboring ally against Great 
Britain. On the 16th of June, Count de Fernan Nunez, Secretary 
of the Foreign Department of France, sent a despatch from Paris to 
the Court of London, notifying the Government of Britain of the 
support of his Government to the claim of Spain to all the west 


coast of North America, as far north as the 61st degree of latitude, 
in Prince William Sound. A decree was passed on the 1st of 
August in the National Assembly of France on behalf of the Family 
Compact, to renew former treaties, offensive and defensive, with 
Spain, giving orders that the French marine should be increased to 
forty-five ships of the line, with a proportionate number of frigates 
and other vessels. 

PREPARATIONS FOR WAR. Spain continued to make preparations 
for war, but depended greatly on support from the allied powers. 
That'support, however, was not to be relied on to the extent required. 
In the interim the ambassadors were engaged in discussing the ques- 
tion pro and con. Couriers were constantly employed carrying 
despatches between Madrid and London. Mr. Fitzherbert claimed 
for Britain the right to trade and settle on any part of the coast not 
actually occupied. The Spanish minister proposed to admit the right 
north of latitude 51 degrees, and for a distance of twenty leagues 
into the interior. Subsequently other boundaries were suggested. 

BRITISH PROPOSITIONS. The British ambassador consented to the 
line of 40 north latitude from the Pacific to the Missouri River, 
beyond which line the territory should be free to all nations the 
subjects of each having access to the settlements of the other. The 
Spaniards declined that proposition. At length, on the 28th of 
October, Mr. Fitzherbert submitted a new proposition, which after 
discussion and modifications, and after having been brought before a 
junta of high Spanish officials, was agreed upon by both plenipoten- 
tiaries. The following is a portion of the document. It saved Spain 
from plunging into a war which she had neither credit nor money to 
carry on. It proceeds : 

MR. FITZHERBERT'S PROPOSAL. "Their Britannic and Catholic 
Majesties, being desirous of terminating by a speedy and solid agree- 
ment, the differences which have lately arisen between the two 
crowns, have adjudged that the best way of obtaining the salutary 
object would be that of an amicable arrangement, which, setting 
aside all retrospective discussion of the rights and pretensions of the 
two parties, their true interests, as well as to the mutual desire with 
which their said majesties are animated, of establishing with each 
other, in everything and in all places the most perfect friendship, 
harmony and good correspondence. In this view they have named 
(the plenipotentiaries) who have agreed upon the following articles : 

" ARTICLE I. It is agreed that the buildings and tracts of land, 
situate on the north-west coast of the Continent of North America, or 


.on islands adjacent to that continent, of which the subjects of his 
Britannic Majesty were dispossessed, about the month of April, 
1789, by a Spanish officer, shall be restored to the said British 

" ARTICLE II. And further a just reparation shall be made, 
according to the nature of the case, for all acts of violence or hostility, 
which may have been committed subsequent to the month of April, 
1789, by the subjects of either of the contracting parties against the 
subjects of the other ; and that, in case any of the said respective 
subjects shall, since the same period, have been forcibly dispossessed 
of their lands, buildings, vessels, merchandise, and other property 
whatever, on the said continent, or on the seas or islands adjacent, 
they shall be re-established in the possession thereof, or a just com- 
pensation shall be made to them for the losses which they have 

" ARTICLE III. And, in order to strengthen the bonds of friend- 
ship, and to preserve in future a perfect harmony, etc., it is agreed 
that their respective subjects shall not be disturbed or molested, either 
in navigating or carrying on their fisheries in the Pacific Ocean, or in 
the South Seas, or in landing on the coasts of those seas, in places 
not already occupied, for the purpose of carrying on their commerce 
with the natives of the country, or of making settlements there ; the 
whole subject, nevertheless, to the restrictions specified in the three 
following articles : 

"ARTICLE IV. His Britannic Majesty engages to take the most 
effectual measures to prevent the navigation and fishery of his 
subjects in the Pacific Ocean, or in the South Seas, from being made 
a pretext for illicit trade with the Spanish settlements ; and with this 
view, it is moreover expressly stipulated that British subjects shall 
not navigate, or carry on their fishery in the said seas, within the 
space of ten sea leagues from any part of the coasts already occupied 
by Spain. 

" ARTICLE V. It is agreed, that as well in the places which are to 
be restored to the British subjects, by virtue of the first article, as in 
all other parts of the north-western coasts of North America, or of 
the islands adjacent, situated to the north of the parts of the said 
coast already occupied by Spain, wherever the subjects of either of 
the two powers shall have made settlements since the month of April, 
1789, or shall hereafter make any, the subjects of the other shall 
have free access, and shall carry on their trade without any disturb- 
ance or molestation. 

" ARTICLE VI. No settlements to be made by subjects of either 
power on coasts and islands of South America, south of parts already 
occupied by Spain ; yet, subjects of both powers may land for 
purposes of fishery and of erecting temporary buildings serving for 
those purposes only. 

"ARTICLE VII. In all cases of complaint or infraction of the 
articles of the present convention, the officers of either party, without 


permitting themselves, previously to commit any violence or act of 
force, shall be bound to make an exact report of the affair, and of its 
circumstances to their respective courts, who will terminate such 
differences in an amicable manner. 

" ARTICLE VIII. Convention to be ratified in six weeks or sooner 
from date of signature. (Signed, etc.) FITZHERBEBT and BLANCA." 



the decision relative to the right of sovereignty and other affairs at 
Nootka, which had just been agreed on and accepted by Great 
Britain and Spain, the British Admiralty 
selected and appointed Lieutenant GEORGE 
VANCOUVER to take charge of an expedition 
to the north-west of America. His commis- 
sion was made out in December, 1790, requir- 
ing him to take command of two vessels then 
fitting out for the purposes mentioned, and 
that he should proceed to the north-west 
coast of America, there to be placed in pos- 
session, by the Spaniards residing at Nootka, 
of the districts and parcels of land occupied 

CAPTA.X GEORGE VANCOUVER. b ? his Majesty's subjects in 1789; and also 
to make a close examination of the coast from 

latitude 30 north to 60 north, more especially with respect to any 
water communication between the west coast and the country upon 
the opposite side of the Continent. 

Vancouver was eminently fitted for the discharge of the important 
duties included in his commission and instructions, is evident from 
the fact that having joined the British navy in 1771, when only 
thirteen years of age, he was, by his good conduct and efficiency, 
promoted step by step, from " able-bodied seaman " to midshipman, 
under the celebrated navigator, Captain Cook, on the ships Resolution 
and Discovery ; and that he passed as lieutenant in October, 1780, 


under certificates from Captains Cook, Gore, Clerke and King ; and 
that on account of his excellent character, the ordinary delay of 
promotion was dispensed with by order of the Admiralty. He 
afterwards served as lieutenant under Lord Rodney in the West 
Indies, and thus gained a thoroughly practical training and nautical 
experience of about twenty years. The able and diplomatic manner 
in which he dealt with the Spaniards at Nootka is proof of his ability 
and tact in that respect, whilst the extension and accurate surveys 
which were subsequently made, showed that he and his officers were 
admirably fitted for the discharge of the duties assigned to them in 
that department by the British Admiralty. 

of which he was given command were the Discovery and Chatham; 
the former a small, ship-rigged vessel of 340 tons, armed with ten 
4-pounders and ten swivels; the latter, a brig of 135 tons, armed 
with four 3-pounders and six swivels. The swivels were small 
cannons fitted in a socket in the bulwarks, permitting them to be 
turned in any direction. The crew of the Discovery numbered, in all^ 
one hundred ; the crew of the Chatham, forty-five, the following being 
the officers : H.M.S. Discovery Captain, George Vancouver ; First 
Lieutenant, Zacheriah Mudge ; Second Lieutenant, Peter Puget ; 
Third Lieutenant, Joseph Baker ; Master, Joseph Whidby ; three 
master's mates, surgeon, boatswain, carpenter, gunner, and six 
midshipmen. H.M.S. Chatham Commander, Lieutenant W. R. 
Broughton; Lieutenant, Jas. Hanson; Master, Jas. Johnstone; two 
master's mates, surgeon, boatswain, gunner and four midshipmen. 

THE SHIPS LEAVE THE THAMES, 1791. The ships left the Thames 
on January 26th, 1791, and Falmouth on April 1st, taking the route 
via Cape of Good Hope. Captain Vancouver arrived on the western 
ooast of Australia, September 27th, and remained on that coast until 
October 23rd, discovering and naming certain portions which had 
been passed by Captain Cook. He proceeded via Van Diemen's Land 
to New Zealand, where a stay was made, for refitting, from the 2nd 
to the 22nd November, in Dusky Bay. The vessels then sailed for 
the Society Islands, where they remained until January, 1792. 

AT THE SANDWICH ISLANDS. The course was next shaped for the 
Sandwich Islands, where they made a stay until the 16th of March. 
Sail was then set for the north-west coast, which was sighted on 18th 
of April, in latitude 39 N. Coasting northwards, at daylight April 
29th, a sail was sighted, the first they had seen for eight months. 


The stranger hoisted United States colors, and fired a gun to the 
leeward. On being spoken, she proved to be the ship Columbia, of 
Boston, commanded by 'Robert Gray, who reported having been nine 
days off the mouth of a large river, but which he could not enter 
owing to strong currents. 

CAPE FLATTERY, 29TH APRIL, 1792. Captain Vancouver reached 
Cape Flattery by noon on the 29th. Proceeding up the Straits of 
Fuca, the Indian village of Classett was noticed, and about two miles 
beyond the village a small bay with a little island lying off to its 
eastern side, was passed. This is now known as Neah Bay. The 
high shores of the northern side of the straits could only be indis- 
tinctly seen through the rain, and the weather became more 
unpleasant as the day advanced, the wind veering to the S. E. This 
obliged the vessel to keep close along the southern shore, and at seven 
in the evening they came to anchor, one mile from the beach and in 
twenty-three fathoms of water, about eight miles within the entrance 
of the straits. 

A CENTURY AFTERWARDS. A competent navigator and a modern 
writer on Vancouver's centenary, says : " The following morning, 
April 30th, with a gentle breeze from the N. W., clear and pleasant 
weather, the vessels steered to the eastward at a distance of about 
two miles from the southern shore. At noon the latitude was 
observed as 48 19' north, and during the afternoon the delightful 
serenity of the weather and the smoothness of the sea enabled lunar 
observations to be taken for ascertaining the longitude. From these 
observations the position of Cape Flattery was determined as 48 
23^' N., and 125 45' W. This position speaks well for the exactness 
of Vancouver's observations, as the latitude here is correct and the 
longitude, the great bugbear in navigation in those days, only 23 ' too 
far east. In many other instances in his work the latitude and longi- 
tude of notable places are given, and in nearly all the latitude is 
correct and the longitude not deviating more than 15' from what is 
assigned to those positions now. Vancouver had three chronometers 
with him, made by the best makers of the day, one of them having been 
previously round the world with Captain Cook. However, not much 
confidence could be placed in their performance, and they were 
principally used to carry on one set of lunar observations to another. 
The smallest rate was a gaining one of 21" per day and the largest 
40", very large rates when compared with good chronometers of the 
present day. 

MOUNT BAKER. " As the day advanced, the wind and weather, 
which was delightfully pleasant, accelerated their progress, and at 
five in the afternoon, a very low sandy spit was observed projecting 
from the cliffy shores into the sea, and at the same time away to the 


north-eastward a high conspicuous mountain was seen towering above 
the clouds and covered with snow. As the third lieutenant was the 
first to see it, the mountain was named in honor of him Mount Baker. 
[This officer was promoted to first lieutenant in 1794. ED.] Just 
inside the sandy spit the vessels anchored for the night, and as the 
low point bore a great resemblance to Dungeness in the British 
channel, it was named New Dungeness. 

EXPLORATIONS COMMENCED. "Tuesday, May 1, 1792, was ushered 
in by weather delightfully fine, and the boats of the Discovery were 
got out for explorations along the coast. They returned at night 
with the knowledge that a short distance farther to the eastward was 
a large bay with an island protecting its entrance, and to this bay 
the ship sailed next morning, Vancouver naming it Port Discovery 
after his ship, and the island Protection Island. 

THOROUGH WORK WAS PERFORMED. " The ships securely moored 
in Port Discovery, the boats were again got ready for explorations, 
and on the morning of May 7 the Discovery's yawl, with Captain 
Vancouver, the launch, Lieutenant Puget, and the Chatham's cutter, 
Mr. Johnstone, left for the eastward. The boats separated and all of 
them rejoined the next day, having made the circuit of a very safe 
and more capacious harbor than Port Discovery, and rendered more 
pleasant by the high lands being at a greater distance from the water 
side. To this port was given the name of Port Townsend in honor 
of the noble marquis of that name. 

INLETS, BAYS, AND BASINS. " By the end of the month an exam- 
ination and preliminary survey were completed of those hitherto 
unknown inlets, bays, and basins, whose shore lines are now known 
to measure 1,800 miles. Captain Vancouver named that wonderfully 
situated branch of the Pacific Ocean Puget Sound after Mr. Puget, 
one of his lieutenants, whose assistance in tracing its sinuous shores, 
he says, he found of very great value. 

Two SPANISH VESSELS. "On completing the survey of Puget Sound, 
Vancouver continued his voyage northward, surveying Burrard Inlet, 
Howe Sound, etc. In an inlet near Gray's Point, June 22, he found two 
Spanish vessels of forty-five tons burden, with twenty -four men each, 
under command of Senor Don D. Galiano, and Senor Don C. Valdez, 
who were engaged in surveying those channels, having come from 
Nootka by the north end of the island. They received Vancouver with 
great courtesy, and informed him that at Nootka there were three 
Spanish frigates and a brig awaiting his arrival. They gave him copies 
of their charts, which facilitated his voyage northward. He rounded 
Cape Scott, the north-west point of Vancouver Island, on the 25th, 
and reached Nootka on the 27th of August. At the entrance of the 
harbor he was met by a Spanish officer and a pilot, who brought the 
Discovery to anchor near where ' His Catholic Majesty's' brig Active 
was riding, bearing the broad pennant of Sen. Don Juan Francisco 
de la y Bodega Quadra, commandant of the marine establishment of 
San Bias and California." 


QUADRA AND VANCOUVER, As Senor Quadra lived on shore, 
Lieutenant Puget was sent to acquaint him of Vancouver's arrival, 
and to inquire if a royal salute to the flag would be accepted. A 
polite reply in the affirmative was returned, and a salute of thirteen 
guns exchanged. Vancouver afterwards went ashore and was 
received with great cordiality. Many visits were exchanged between 
Quadra and Vancouver. The situation was fully discussed. On the 
one hand Vancouver had instructions, in accordance with the first 
article of the late convention, to receive from Quadra the buildings 
and tracts of land of which British subjects had been dispossessed in 
1789. On the other hand, Quadra desired delay as he had not 
received special instructions from his Government on the subject. 
His predecessor, and those who favored his views, were anxious to 
shut out British traders. 

DEATH OF QUADRA. The representatives of Britain and Spain 
continued to act in amity. It was agreed between them that the 
whole matter relative to the transfer should remain in abeyance until 
further instructions were received, and that in the meantime the 
large island which Vancouver had just circumnavigated, should for 
the time being be named " Quadra and Vancouver Island." Quadra 
and his fleet left Nootka on the 22nd of September, 1792, for his 
Mexican headquarters at San Bias ; and Vancouver, as soon as he had 
completed arrangements for storing supplies, etc., left Nootka on the 
12th of October for the Sandwich Islands, where he wintered. Senor 
Quadra died the following March, greatly regretted by Captain Van- 
couver. He was succeeded by General Jose Manuel de Alva, who 
was appointed commander of the San Bias establishment and as 
commissioner at Nootka. 




FRESH EVIDENCE. Before Vancouver left Nootka, Mr. Duffin 
(first officer on the Felice), one of the men who had been employed 
by Captain Meares, opportunely arrived and gave evidence as follows. 
His evidence probably formed part of the despatches sent by Van- 
couver to England via China by an envoy. It furnished direct facts 
from an eye-witness : 

To Captain George Vancouver, Commander of his Britannic Majesty's 
ships, "Discovery" and " Chatham" now lying in Friendly Cove, 
King George's Sound. 

" SIR, Whereas different reports have been propagated relative to 
what right Mr. Meares hnd for taking possession of the land i i 
Friendly Cove, Nootka Sound, I shall state with that candor and 
veracity which always influence me on such occasions, an impartial 
account of Mr. Meares's proceedings in the above mentioned port. 

"Toward the close of 1787, a commercial expedition was under- 
taken by Henry Cox, Esq., & Co., merchants, then residing at Macao, 
who accordingly fitted and equipped two ships for the fur trade on 
the north-west coast of America. The management of this expedi- 
tion was reposed in John Meares, Esq., as commander-in-chief and 
sole conductor of the voyage, and who was likewise one of the 
merchant proprietors. These vessels were equipped under Portu- 
guese colors, with a view to mitigate those heavy port charges 
imposed on ships of every nation (the Portuguese only excepted), 
which circumstance is well known to all commercial gentlemen 
trading in that part of the world. Under those circumstances the 
said vessels fitted out in the name and under the firm of John 
Cavallo, Esq., a Portuguese merchant then residing at -Macao. He 
had no property in them whatsoever both their cargoes being 
entirely British property and the vessel navigated solely by the 
subjects of his Britannic Majesty. 

" On our arrival the first time in the above port in Nootka Sound, 
which was in May, 1788, the two chiefs, Maquilla and Calicum, were 
absent. On their return, which was either on the 17th or the 18th 
of the same month, Mr. Meares, accompanied by myself and Mr. 
Robert Funter, second officer, went on shore and traded with the 
said chiefs for the whole of the land that forms Friendly Cove, in 


his Britannic Majesty's name. He accordingly bought it of them 
for eight or ten sheets of copper and several other trifling articles. 
The natives were fully satisfied with their agreement. The chief and 
likewise the people did homage to Mr. Meares as their sovereign, 
using those formalities that are peculiar to themselves and which Mr. 
Meares has made mention of in his publication. The British flag 
was displayed on shore at the same time, and those formalities were 
used as is customary on such occasions, and not the Portuguese flag 
as has been insinuated by several people who were not present 
at the time ; consequently they advanced those assertions without 

"On taking possession of the cove in his Britannic Majesty's name 
as before mentioned, Mr. Meares caused a house to be erected on the 
very spot where the Chatham's tent is at present, it being the most 
convenient part of the cove for our intentions. The chiefs with 
their subjects offered to quit the cove entirely and reside at a place 
called Tashees, and leave the place to ourselves as entire masters and 
owners of the whole cove and lands adjacent ; consequently we were 
not confined merely to that spot but had full liberty to erect a house 
in any other part of the cove, but chose the spot we did for the above 
mentioned reason. 

" Mr. Meares appointed Mr. Robert Funter to reside in the house, 
which consisted of three chambers for the officers, and the proper 
apartments for the men, and a mess-room. The said apartments 
were elevated about five feet from the ground, and under these were 
apartments for keeping our stores in. Exclusive of these were sheds 
and outhouses for the convenience of the artificers to work in. On 
Mr. Meares's departure the house was left in good condition, and he 
enjoined Maquilla to take care of it until his return or any of his 
associates on the coast again. 

" It has been reported that on the arrival of Don Jose Estevan 
Martinez in the cove, there was not the least vestige of the house 
remaining. However that might be, I cannot say, as I was not at 
Nootka at the time. 

"On our return in July, 1789, in the said cove, we found it 
occupied by the subjects of his Catholic Majesty. There was like- 
wise some people belonging to the ship Columbia, commanded by Mr. 
John Kendrick, under the flag and protection of the United States 
of America, who had their tents and outhouses erected on the same 
spot on which our house formerly stood, but I saw no remains of our 
former architecture. 

" We found lying in the cove, at anchor, his Catholic Majesty's 
ships Princessa and Don Carlos ; likewise the ship Columbia and 
sloop Washington ; and the second day after our arrival in the 
Argonaut, we were captured by Don Jose Estevan Martinez. The 
Americans were suffered to carry on their commerce unmolested. 

" This is the best information I can give you that might tend to 
elucidate the propriety of Mr. Meares taking possession of the village 
of Nootka and Friendly Cove. 


"Should anyone doubt the truth of this protest, I am always 
ready to attest it before any court of jurisdiction, or any peison duly 
authorized to examine me. 

" I have the honor to be, with the greatest esteem, etc., 

" (Signed) ROBT. DUFFIN. 

"That the above was the identical truth, was sworn before me 
this 21st September, 1792. 

" (Signed) GEO. VANCOUVER." 

COMMISSIONERS APPOINTED. On behalf of Spain, Don Manuel de la 
Heras was appointed a commissioner to determine the amount of 
losses to be paid to British subjects as compensation for their losses 
caused by the seizure of their vessels, etc., in 1789. Mr. Rudolph 
Woodford was appointed on behalf of Great Britain. They met at 
Whitehall, London, and agreed that the sum of two hundred and ten 
thousand dollars in coin, should be paid by Spain in full of all claims. 
The agreement was signed on the 12th of February, 1793. Bancroft, 
in his history of the North-West Coast, states it was ratified the 
same day by the British monarch. He adds sneeringly : " Presum- 
ably the money was paid without delay, greatly to the satisfaction of 
Meares and his associates, who if they got half the amount named, 
though their original claim had been six hundred and fifty thousand 
dollars, had every reason to be content." 

BANCROFT'S BIAS. The historian just quoted, when dealing with 
British affairs, displays a marked bias and anti-British feeling. A 
similar spirit appears to have existed amongst the fur traders from 
Boston, 011 their arrival at the west coast. They seemed ready to 
enter into league with Martinez, who accommodatingly gave them 
supplies from the British ships he had seized ; and from their sea-otter 
skins he deducted 30 per cent., for freight after appropriating a dozen 
of the best skins for his own use. The folio wing paragraphs from the 
same author are rather suggestive : 

Columbia arrived the day after Meares's departure, and the Americans, 
eager to get rid of their rivals in trade, gladly aided in the prepara- 
tions for departure. The house on shore, if we may credit Gray and 
Ingraham, was demolished, part of the material being put on board 
the English vessels, and the rest given to Captain Kendrick. Cap- 
tain Kendrick's vessel wintered at Nootka. . . . Just outside 
the entrance of the sound, Martinez met Gray, of the Washington, 
and in a friendly interview made many inquiries about the vessels 
within, and announced his intention of capturing the English craft. 
. . . Martinez went up the sound to spend a few days with 


Kendrick. . . . The Englishmen suspected that Kendrick had 
instigated the seizure ; and I have little doubt that he did so, at least 
to the extent of putting the Iphigenias peculiar papers in their worst 
light, and encouraging the Spaniards' worst suspicions. . 

THEY WERE NOT INTERFERED WITH. " It has already been 
noticed that throughout this whole affair relations between the 
Spaniards and Americans were so friendly as to suggest a secret 
understanding. There was not the slightest interference with the 
Columbia, or Washington, though Martinez could hardly have been 
unaware of the orders issued in Mexico for the seizure of those very 
vessels, if they should enter a Spanish port. It was afterwards 
stated that the Columbia was detained until some doubtful expressions 
in her papers had been explained, but there is no evidence that such 
was the case. Martinez's interview with Gray and visit to Kendrick 
just before the seizure of the Iphigenia, as I have said, caused Cap- 
tain Douglas to suspect, very naturally, that the Americans had 
instigated the act, though Captain Kendrick denied it. Subsequently 
a close intimacy continued ; interviews were frequent ; American 
officers were companions and witnesses for the Spaniards in all their 
transactions with the English ; Mr. Coolidge took charge of one of 
the prizes for a trading cruise, presumably on joint account. Captain 
Gray willingly carried the captive men and stores to China ; the 
Americans became later most friendly witnesses in defence of Mar- 
tinez's acts. It by no means follows, however, that the Americans 
took any dishonorable advantage of the quarrel. Their own interests 
and duty to their owners required them to get rid of rival traders 
and to secure Spanish protection for their own enterprise : legally, 
the Spaniards were prima facie in the right, and their opponents in 
the wrong ; and I know of no reason why, under the circumstances, 
sympathy should have been contrary to interest. Individually, and in 
the disposition of property, there may have been instances of dishonor- 
able action on the part of both Americans and Spanish ; Vmt the 
testimony is not sufficient for a conclusion on that point." 

ELISA SUCCEEDED MARTINEZ. Nootka, after the recall of Martinez 
in 1791, was placed in charge of Commander Elisa, who had a fort 
built and the old fortification restored. When Captain Kendrick 
returned from his trip to China he landed in the north at Barrel 
Sound, Queen Charlotte Island. There he had a skirmish with the 
natives. He repulsed them, killing a large number and carrying 
away their furs. Coming south to Nootka he appears to have 
fallen into disrepute with the new commander, as after reaching his 
old anchorage some distance along the cove beyond the fort, he was 
ordered not to trade or anchor in Spanish ports. He obeyed and 
left next morning, by the northern passage, with his cargo of eight 
hundred sea-otter skins, preferring not to risk a second exposure to 
the guns of the fort. 


KEXDRICK PURCHASES LANDS. He proceeded to Clayoquot where 
he procured an additional number of skins, and is said to have 
purchased large tracts of land in the Nootka region from the chiefs 
Maquinna and Wicananish. Bancroft, in a foot-note of considerable 
length, gives a list of the deeds. The areas of land embraced in them 
were estimated to include about 240 square miles (153,600 acres). 
Those purchases or grants from the natives were never realized or 
acted upon, although as late as 1840 the subject was revived and 
brought before Congress, but without any satisfactory results to the 
heirs of Kendrick. 

SURVEYS OF 1793. After spending the winter at the Sandwich 
Islands as he proposed, Vancouver returned to Nootka in the spring 
of 1793. He only remained there three days. The Chatham was 
then commanded by Peter Puget, who was promoted from the third 
lieutenancy of the Discovery to nil the vacancy caused by Captain 
Broughton's absence as special envoy to London. No despatches 
having arrived for Vancouver, he proceeded on a northern cruise to 
continue his survey along the mainland, from where it had been 
discontinued the former season. The Spanish occupants at Nootka 
had passed the winter in erecting a small fort on Hog Island, on 
which they mounted eleven guns 9-pounders. An earthquake is 
recorded to have taken place there on the 17th of February. In 
May, Fidelgo was succeeded in his command by Alferez Ramon 
Saavedra, who arrived from Sari Bias in the San Carlos, whicli 
replaced the Princessa. 

THE FUR TRADE ALONG THE COAST does not appear to have been 
as brisk in 1793 as in 1792. Several British vessels, however, were 
seen by Vancouver during his summer's survey. The islands and the 
wonderful inlets and canals of the mainland were carefully surveyed. 
A complete chart of these islands and of the east side of Queen 
Charlotte Island was made, and as the Discovery and Chatham 
returned south by the west or outside of the island, Captain 
Vancouver had an opportunity of taking correct bearings. He 
arrived at Nootka on the 5th of October, and was received by Senor 
Saavedra, in charge of the port, with usual ceremonies and salutes. 
As no despatches had arrived from England for him, after three days 
he sailed for Monterey, en route to the Sandwich Islands to winter 





ANOTHER GREAT EXPLORER. Whilst Vancouver was engaged in 
making his survey northward from Queen Charlotte Sound, another 
explorer was making his way from the east overland to the Pacific 
coast. This was ALEXANDER MACKENZIE, a 
native of Stornoway, Scotland, who emigrated 
to Canada about the year 1779. On his 
arrival in Montreal, he entered the service of 
Mr. Gregory, an extensive fur dealer. In 
this employment he continued for five years, 
and afterwards for a short time carried on 
business on his own account. When the 
North-West Fur Company was formed, he 
became one of the partners. After much 
experience and successful dealing with the 
natives, we find him, in 1789, at Fort Chipe- 
weyan, on Lake Athabasca or Lake of the 
Hills, near the north-eastern limit of the Rocky Mountains. This 
fort was then the principal western trading-post belonging to the 

His PERSONAL APPEARANCE. Mackenzie is described as being 
possessed of a vigorous mind and a fine physique. In form, he was of 
medium stature and of square, muscular build, very strong, lithe and 
active, and capable of enduring great fatigue. His features were 
regular, eyes bright and searching, nose and mouth Grecian, 
and his forehead high, intellectual and crowned with dark, wavy 
hair. Firmness and weight marked the man in every attitude and 
expression. Lips, chin and facial illumination, all implied the 
possession of a will which would never rest satisfied until its purposes 
were accomplished. In thought, he was as refined and noble as 
in outward expression he was dignified. His energy was mild ; 
not of the impatient, fretful order, and therefore well suited to his 
self-imposed task. His large, gentle eyes imparted to his decisive 



features a suavity of expression of the utmost importance to him in 
dealing not only with his own men, who were sometimes inclined to 
be mutinous, but also with affrighted savages, who in him beheld the 
first white man they had ever seen. 

His QUALIFICATIONS AND ENTERPRISE. Such a noble character, 
doubtless, was Alexander Mackenzie. His was a mind bent on 
enterprise, and filled with zeal for the benefit of his partners in trade 
and with a desire for the well-being of mankind in general. He 
knew the extent of the great Saskatchewan River and its outlets 
through Lake Winnipeg and the Nelson River in Hudson Bay ; and 
he determined to know all that could be known of the great river of 
the north, which, flowing out of Great Slave Lake, connected with 
Athabasca Lake and Peace River. He resolved to explore its length 
as far as practicable. It might be that his efforts would be the 
means of solving the problem of a northern water communication 
between the Pa9ific and Atlantic Oceans. He weighed the matter 
thoroughly, and with the consent of his partners formed an expedition 
in 1789, consisting of four Canadians, two of whom were accom- 
panied by their wives, and a German. An Indian and his two wives, 
in a small canoe, formed part of the expedition, also two young 
Indians in another small canoe. Those men were engaged to serve 
in the twofold capacity of interpreters and hunters. 

EXPLORED MACKENZIE RIVER. Leaving Fort Chipeweyan, on the 
south side of Athabasca, or the Lake of the Hills, he crossed that 
lake with his party, and joining Peace River at Salt Springs, followed 
the river to Great Slave Lake. Crossing that lake diagonally to the 
west corner, he debouched into the great river of the north and 
followed it to its outlets in the Arctic, or Frozen Ocean. The party 
were obliged to put up with considerable hardships during the trip, 
which, including the return, occupied one hundred and two days, but 
without any loss of life or any serious difficulty with the natives. 
After the expedition had gone but a short distance north, they met 
tribes, though not numerous, who had never seen a white man 
before. The river which Mackenzie had explored he named after 
himself, " Mackenzie River," a name which it still bears. From 
what he had seen in his journey to the Arctic Ocean, it was evident, 
he concluded, that no navigable water channel could exist between 
the Pacific and the Atlantic Oceans farther north than the outlet of 
Mackenzie River in the Arctic Ocean ; he therefore resolved to find 
a route westward across the Continent direct to the Pacific, by way 


of Peace River as far as the watershed or height of land which 
formed the head waters of that river. 

HE CONSULTED HIS PARTNERS. In Montreal, shortly afterwards, 
he consulted his partners, and pointed out to them the advantages 
which must follow by the extension of their trade westward to the 
Pacific. He proposed to visit London to ascertain from the reports 
of the latest discoveries by Captains Cook, Meares, and others, the 
corresponding latitude and longitude with Fort Chipeweyan and 
Peace River ; and by studying astronomy and navigation, he could 
so shape his course and record his journeys and location that 
permanent advantages would be secured. They approved of his 
proposition and he proceeded to London, where he was well received 
and afforded every opportunity to obtain the required information 
and instruction. Being an apt student, he was not very long in 
acquiring the knowledge of which he was in quest. 

THE WESTERN JOURNEY. In 1792, we find Mr. Mackenzie, 
returned from England, after having crossed and recrossed the 
Atlantic and the eastern portion of the Continent of America, again 
at Fort Chipeweyan and prepared to embark on his proposed western 
journey over the unknown portion of the North American continent. 
On the 10th of October he left Fort Chipeweyan and proceeded again 
northerly across Lake Athabasca to Peace River. This time he 
turned westward up stream, with the intention, before the frost set 
in, of reaching the most westerly of the trading establishments which 
then occupied Peace River they extended along the river a distance 
of about two hundred miles. He intended to winter there and prepare 
for a start as soon as spring would open. This he accomplished, 
arriving at New Establishment Post on the 20th of October. 

THE WINTERING PLACE. By the 1st of November lie reached the 
proposed wintering place at Fort Fork, a short distance west of 
where the east branch of Peace River joins the main river. To this 
point Mackenzie had sent forward two men early in the season, 
to clear the ground and prepare square timber for buildings and 
palisades for an enclosure. Tents were used by Mr. Mackenzie and 
party until the buildings were completed, which they were not until 
the 23rd of December. The cold by that time was intense. Food 
and firewood, however, were in abundance, so time wore the winter 
away not unpleasantly. No sooner was the river clear of ice in the 
spring, than Mr. Mackenzie records he " closed the year's business by 
writing up his accounts, and despatching six fur-laden canoes to Fort 


ALEXANDER MACKAY, OF RKAY. All things being in readiness, on 
the 9th of May, 1793, Mackenzie and his party embarked in one 
canoe, which is described as being " twenty-five feet long, with four 
and three-quarters feet beam and twenty-six inches hold." This 
small vessel was all that was provided to carry the whole party, 
numbering ten persons, " with all their equipage, arms, ammunition, 
provisions, goods for presents, and baggage, in weight not less than 
three thousand pounds, yet was so slight that two men could easily 
carry her three or four miles without stopping to rest." The principal 
man of the expedition, next to the leader, was Alexander Mackay, a 
native of Reay, Sutherland shire, Scotland. This young man was an 
expert boatman and hunter, and shared the responsibility throughout 
with Mackenzie. He divided keeping night watches with his leader, 
when amongst natives who could not safely be relied on. 

DIFFICULT NAVIGATION. During the first nine or ten days, navi- 
gation, although against a strong current, was comparatively easy. 
On the north-western bank of the stream vast herds of elk were 
feeding and great numbers of buffalo, with their young frisking 
around them. Mackenzie, describing the country, says : " This 
magnificent theatre of nature had all the decorations which the trees 
and animals of the country can afford, and displayed an exuberant 
verdure. Trees which bear blossom were advancing fast to that 
delightful appearance, and the velvet rind of their branches reflecting 
the oblique rays of a rising or setting sun, added a splendid gaiety to 
the scene." As the current increased it was necessary to use 
propelling poles more than paddles. Rapids and cascades now 
became frequent, and sharp rocks threatened destruction to the 
canoe. On both sides of the river the banks were more steep. A 
band of Rocky Mountain Indian hunters were met at this point. 
They seemed distressed at parting with their two friends, who went 
as interpreters along with the expedition. Mackenzie assured them 
that in three moons they would return to them. As the party 
proceeded, the route became more difficult. Their boat in some 
places had to be pulled up by the men laying hold of the overhanging 
branches, in other places by pulling on ropes fastened to trees ; 
sometimes trees had to be cut down to afford a footing along the 
bank of the river. 

HEAD WATERS OF PEACE RIVER. Not far from the head waters 
of Peace River, the expedition encountered a band of Rocky 
Mountain Indians who fled at the approach of the white men. They 


returned, however, when assured by the interpreters that the party 
were friendly. With great persuasion and not a few presents, one 
of the natives consented to accompany the party as guide, as he 
appeared to have some knowledge of the rivers and country beyond 
the height of land which they were now approaching. Proceeding 
slowly and toilsomely, they came to a lake two miles in length, at 
the upper end of which they landed and unloaded. This was the 
12th of June, 1793. Mackenzie, in his journal, says : " This I con- 
sider as the highest and southernmost source of the TJnjigah or Peace 
River, latitude 54 24' north, longitude 121 west of Greenwich, 
which, after a winding course through a vast extent of country, 
receiving many large rivers in its progress and passing through Slave 
Lake, empties itself into the Frozen Ocean in 70 north latitude and 
about 135 west longitude." This point might with propriety be 
called the source of the Mackenzie River, as he had explored both 
rivers from their sources to outlets. 

LAKES AND PORTAGES. A portage over a low ridge of land, along 
a beaten path for eight hundred and seventeen paces, had now to 
be made. Another small lake was then reached, on which they 
embarked. Thence they entered Bad River, from which, on account 
of its shallowness and rocky bottom, they were obliged to land, 
unload and encamp. They now had begun to navigate down stream, 
which is far more dangerous in canoe navigation than ascending 
unknown streams on which are frequent rapids and cascades. A 
road had to be cut to portage around the rapid. On launching 
again, the swift current caught the canoe and drove it broadside 
upon a bar. All hands jumped into the icy cold stream, which 
so lightened the canoe as to enable it to clear the bar. The 
men, clinging to the craft, jumped in as they best could. Before 
they were fairly seated they were driven against a rock, which 
shattered the stern and threw the boat to the opposite shore, 
breaking the bow in pieces. The foreman caught some overhanging 
branches, but was jerked out of the boat in an instant and swung 
on shore. In another moment they were in the midst of a cascade, 
the rocks breaking through the bottom of the canoe, which now filled 
with water. 

NARROW ESCAPE. Fortunately an eddy caught the boat, bringing 
it into shallow water. There it struck a rock, on which it remained 
until unloaded of such effects as were not swept away by the water. 
The powder in the boat fortunately escaped damage. Mackenzie 


stood in the water, holding the boat in position until the stuff was 
unloaded. It was then dragged ashore in a very bad state and was. 
repaired next day. Another road had to be cut to the foot of the 
rapids and across a swampy piece of ground, making a portage as 
direct as possible to the great river which was not very far distant. 
The expedition in this part of the journey only progressed at the rate 
of two or three miles a day. The Indian guide, seeing those difficulties, 
became disheartened and deserted. 

great river were at last reached. The explorer imagined he had 
reached the great Columbia River, which he had heard of when in 
England. The mistake was natural for him to make. The course 
and outlet of the river was not explored until 1806-8, when Simon 
Fraser followed its course to the outlet, and gave it the name Fraser 
River. Mackenzie found the great river was taking him too far south 
for the latitude in which he wished to reach the Pacific Ocean. On? 
the 21st of June, Mackenzie records in his journal that being " very 
sensible of the difficulty of procuring provisions in this country, he 
thought it prudent to guard against any possibility of distress of that 
kind on our return. He, therefore, ordered ninety pounds weight of 
pemmican to be buried in a hole sufficiently deep to admit of a fire 
being built over it without doing any injury to the hidden treasure, 
and which would at the same time secure it from the natives of the 
country, or the wild animals of the woods." 

MET ARMED NATIVES. Mackenzie's progress was now rapid, but 
he found the river was carrying him farther south and easterly than 
his desired latitude. He, therefore, after consultation with a tribe of 
natives, concluded to return to a point near West Road River which 
he had formerly passed during a fog. There he saw a canoe in which 
was a single occupant. This individual gave a shrill whistle, which 
immediately brought a crowd of other natives to the bank of the 
river. They came armed, and with warlike antics and whoops 
indicated that Mackenzie's boat should not land. He ordered his 
boatman to turn and take a position on the bank opposite, the cur- 
rent in the meantime carrying them past where the Indians had 
assembled. Mackenzie then landed alone, and walked up the bank 
displaying trinkets and beckoning for them to come over to him. 
He had directed one of his hunters to land and slip into the woods, 
carrying two guns with him, that in the event of an attack he would 
be ready to assist. 


PACIFIED THEM WITH TRINKETS. Two natives in a canoe after 
some time ventured to cross the stream, but stopped within' about a 
hundred yards of Mackenzie. He, with a perfect knowledge of the 
Indian character, beckoned them to approach, holding out towards 
them beads and looking-glasses. Slowly and timidly the wild men 
&hoved their canoe, stern foremost, toward the bank until within full 
view of the alluring trinkets. Finally they gathered courage to land 
and seat themselves beside the white man, at whom they gazed in 
awe and admiration, astonished at the looking-glass. Mackenzie's 
hunter now joined him, which startled the two savages somewhat ; 
nevertheless their fears were soon quieted, and to the great joy of the 
explorer he found that his hunter could converse with them. After 
a short stay, during which the hunter did all in his power to win 
their confidence, and declining an invitation to visit the white man's 
canoe, the savages signified their desire to depart, which was cordially 
permitted by their entertainer. Shooting their boat across the stream, 
the two daring natives were received by their brethren as from the 
jaws of death. After consulting for a quarter of an hour, the natives 
invited the white men to visit them, an invitation which was promptly 
accepted. Presents were distributed, and then Mackenzie set about 
gathering information of the route westwards. 

ALARMING INTELLIGENCE. He was informed by the natives that 
"the river was long, the current rapid and dangerous, in places indeed 
impassable, rushing furiously between rugged rocks ; it ran towards 
the midday sun, and at its mouth they had been told were white men 
building houses. The people below were a malignant race, and lived 
in subterranean dens. They had iron arms, and to go among them 
was certain death." Thus they attempted to dissuade the strangers 
from their purpose. But although this alarming intelligence was by 
no means to be disregarded wholly as a fiction, yet it did not materially 
change the explorer's plans. He requested an intelligent native to 
draw a plan of the river, which was done with readiness and skill. 
Next morning the explorer embarked accompanied by two of the 
natives, and dropped down the river fourteen miles. On their way 
they landed near a house, the roof of which only appeared above the 
ground. The inhabitants fled at the approach of strangers, but 
returned as soon as they understood that no harm was likely to 

natives were encountered more ferocious and fierce-looking than any 


they had yet seen. Yet Mackenzie, with his great tact, soon made 
them friendly. He found among them four strangers belonging to 
the nation adjoining. One of those was an elderly man of prepossessing 
appearance. To him Mackenzie, as was his custom, applied for 
information respecting the country. The old man, taking a piece of 
bark, drew a map with the river running to the east and south, with 
many tributaries, dangerous rapids and impracticable carrying-places. 
Their iron, brass and copper came from their neighbors to the west. 
In that direction the distance was not far from the sea. If they 
kept to the west between the mountains, the route is not difficult, 
there being a well-beaten path, which they had often travelled, with 
assisting links of lakes and rivers. There were three points of 
departure one where they then were (that is, near the Quesnell 
River), one at West Road River, and one beyond that point. 

MUTINY THREATENED. Here was a quandary. Which course 
should he pursue 1 Provisions and ammunition were becoming low, 
and his men were on the point of mutiny. He made up his mind 
that although he should not be able to return to Athabasca that 
season; though he should never return; though he should be deserted 
by his men and left to find the western sea alone yet he would 
find it. This was his resolve, and so he notified his men. It was 
evident that the short, beaten path to the west was preferable and 
less hazardous than the perilous river of unknown limits to the south. 
He had passed the point where the proper overland route lay, and to 
that point they must now return. One of the natives at the last 
encampment promised to be their guide ; hence, the next day, the 
23rd of June, the course of the party was changed to retrace their 
route to West Road River. 

A NEW CANOE REQUIRED. The canoe had now become so dilapi- 
dated that it was absolutely necessary to construct a new one. This 
operation occupied from the 28th of June until the 1st of July. It 
was now necessary to put the men on short allowance, which, with 
the desertion of the guide, did not assist to restore their good humor. 
The explorer's position was, therefore, an exceedingly critical one, 
yet he did not recede in the least from his determination to proceed 
westward. The men had shown a disposition to take the lead and 
return to Athabasca ; they had even gone so far as to load the 
canoe preparatory to embarking, without instructions from their chief 
officer. It was high time for Mr. Mackenzie to place his deter- 
mination squarely before them. He learned with some satisfaction 


that they had not definitely fixed on any plan of return. He argued 
the case calmly with them. He reminded them of the promises of 
fidelity they had made. A modern writer paraphrasing this portion 
of Mackenzie's journal says : "Pointing to the western path, he tells 
them he is going to try it. His calm persistence wins. Though 
beset with dangers and hardships, habit is too much for them, their 
master is before them. Once more they promise their support. The 
manifestation of moral power is apparent. Place things the right 
way before men and they will die for their leader ; if he bungles, 
peradventure they will make him die. Herein consists the difference 
between born commanders, and men only fit to govern cattle." 

HEAVY BAGGAGE LEFT BEHIND. As it was concluded they must 
now proceed on foot, it was necessary to leave behind everything 
they could not carry ; therefore, it was considered prudent to hide 
some provisions and such articles as were considered valuable. To 
do this with safety Mackay and the Indians were sent on ahead. 
In the first hiding-place, Mackenzie explains here, were placed a bag 
of pemmican, two bags of wild rice, and a gallon keg of gunpowder. 
In the second hiding-place were put two bags of Indian corn, or 
maize, and a bale of different articles of merchandise rolled in oil- 
cloth and dressed leather. Their friends were overtaken at " the 
entrance of a small rivulet, where Mackay had agreed to wait. At 
this place it was decided to leave the canoe. A stage was prepared, 
qn which the canoe was placed bottom upwards and shaded by a 
covering of small trees and branches to keep her from the sun. An 
oblong hollow square was then built, ten feet by five, of green logs, 
in which was placed every article necessary to be left, and the whole 
covered with large pieces of timber." 




THEY TRAVEL ON FOOT. At noon all was in readiness for a start 
to enter the woods. The stuff to be carried consisted of four bags 
and a half of pemmican, weighing from eighty-five to ninety pounds 
each ; the case of astronomical instruments ; a parcel of goods for 
presents, weight ninety pounds, and a parcel of ammunition of the 
same weight. The Indians had about forty-five pounds weight of 
pemmican to carry besides their gun, etc., with which they were very 
much dissatisfied ; and, Mackenzie adds, " if they dared, they would 
have instantly left us. They had hitherto been very much indulged, 
but the moment was now arrived when indulgence was no longer 
practicable." His own load, and that of Mr. Mackay, consisted of 
twenty-two pounds of pemmican, some rice, a little sugar, etc., 
amounting in the whole to about seventy pounds each, besides their 
arms and ammunition. Mackenzie says he had the tube of his 
telescope swung across his shoulder, which was a troublesome 
addition to his burden. It was determined that only two meals a 
day should be eaten. This was " regulated without difficulty, as the 
provisions did not require the ceremony of cooking." 

TROUBLE WITH THE GUIDES. The journey commenced by a steep 
ascent of about a mile, along a well-beaten path. The country was 
rugged and ridgy and full of wood. Twelve miles' march under rain, 
which began early in the afternoon, brought them to an Indian 
camp, where was their guide who had preceded them. The natives 
were friendly and proposed to send two of their people on in advance 
to notify and prepare the natives for Mackenzie's arrival. This was 
agreed to, and some presents were given to the couriers that they 
might be favorably prepossessed. Here were found two half-pence, 
one of King George III. and the other of the State of Massachusetts, 
coined in 1787. They had been hung as ornaments in children's ears, 
and were exchanged for other coins by Mackenzie. During this 
portion of the journey Mackenzie had much trouble with his guides, 
who were exceedingly vacillating. To prevent one of them from 


deserting, Mackenzie records he took one of them to sleep with him. 
"The Indian's beaver robe, although a nest of vermin, was spread 
under them Mackenzie's camlet cloak was spread over them. His 
companion's hair being greased with fish-oil, and his body smeared 
with red earth, the sense of smelling, as well as that of feeling, 
threatened to interrupt his rest ; notwithstanding these inconven- 
iences, he yielded to his fatigue and passed the night in sound repose." 
Mr. Mackenzie took the lead each day in the march, to clear the 
branches of the wet which continued to hang on them, after the rain 
had ceased. 

country was destitute of game, to provide for their return another 
half-bag of pemmican was buried. The weather continued rainy, 
which produced great discomfort from wet clothing. The party had 
to cross several rivers ; some they waded, on others they used rafts. 
On the 10th of July they reached several huts and friendly inhabi- 
tants, who said the distance from the sea was from four to eight days. 
They all declared they had been to the coast. This was cheering 
news. Fearing provisions might not be sufficient, it became neces- 
sary to diminish the consumption. The allowance to each was reduced 
by one-third. This, although unwelcome news, was put into imme- 
diate practice. It produced great dissatisfaction. The weather was 
cold, when the sun was not shining, as snow-clad mountains were on 
every side. The people proposed to return, but were prevailed upon 
to proceed. Soon after starting in the morning, they arrived at a 
house which was inhabited. Mackenzie pushed on ahead. As he 
entered the house the man fled with all speed by a back door, leaving 
the terrified women and children, who made a terrible outcry, expect- 
ing they were to be massacred. They soon became pacified, and the 
man eventually returned and acted in a friendly manner. From the 
natives the party received a good supply of fish, which was a welcome 

MODE OF SEPULTURE." A tomb was observed near to every resi- 
dence. The grave was always kept clear of grass and weeds. The 
guide explained that the people had two ways of disposing of their 
dead. It was their practice to burn the bodies of their dead, except 
the larger bones, which are rolled up in bark and suspended on poles 
near the grave. Some tribes, he said, bury their dead. When 
another member of the family dies, the remains of the person who 
was last interred are taken from the grave and burned, so that the 


members of a family are thus successively buried and burned to make 
room for each other, and one tomb proves sufficient for a family 
through succeeding generations." 

A PREPOSSESSING PARTY. Near this place, along the route they 
overtook a party from the north going towards the sea-coast. Mac- 
kenzie describes them as of pleasant aspect. The women's hair was 
neatly parted in the middle, and being plaited, was tied in loose knots 
over the ears. The men were clothed in leather, with their haiv 
nicely combed. Their complexion was fairer, or perhaps it may be 
said with more propriety that they were more cleanly than any of the 
natives whom they had yet seen. Their eyes, though keen and sharp, 
were not of that dark color so generally observable in the various 
tribes of Indians they were, on the contrary, of a grey hue, with a 
tinge of red. There was one man amongst them at least six feet four 
inches in height ; his manners were affable, and he had a more pre- 
possessing appearance than any Indian yet met with on this journey. 
He was about twenty-eight years of age, and was treated with parti- 
cular respect by his party. Every man, woman and child carried a 
proportionate share of the travelling baggage. In camp Mackenzie's 
guide and one of the party amused themselves in a game of chance. 
They each had a bundle of about fifty small sticks, of the size of a quill, 
neatly polished, and about five inches long. A certain number of 
these sticks had red lines around them. One of the players rolled up 
a number in dry grass. According to the judgment of his antagonist 
respecting their number and marks, he lost or won. On this occasion 
the guide was the loser, as he had to part with his bow and arrows, 
and with several articles he had formerly received from Mr. Mackenzie.. 

MACKENZIK SHAVES HIS BEARD. Next morning the northern party 
took a more southerly course. Mackenzie and his guide proceeded 
westerly. A deer was shot, and a heartier meal made than for many 
days previously. Mackenzie records that there he took off his beard 
and changed his linen, and that his people followed "the humanizing 
example." Towards night they reached a river, on the banks of 
which there was an Indian village. The guide went ahead to prepare 
the natives for the arrival and surprise. Mackenzie arrived before 
the others, and was cordially received. He was invited to enter the 
large house, the people in the smaller huts being engaged in cooking 
fish. The large house was erected on posts at some distance from the 
ground. A broad piece of timber with steps cut in it led to a plat- 
form level with the floor. By this sort of ladder a door was reached 


ut the end of the house. Three fires were burning on the floor at 
qual distances apart. The inmates were seated on a bench at the 
upper end. Mackenzie having shaken hands all round, was offered 
a mat to sit on. The rest of his party having arrived, another mat 
was spread alongside for Mackay. The men were seated around and 
regaled with roasted salmon a whole salmon for each of the leaders, 
Mackenzie and Mackay, and half a salmon to each of the rest of the 
party The women had retired for the night behind a recess formed 
of wide boards. 

A HOSPITABLE CHIEF. Although the chief had indicated that the 
party might sleep inside the house, Mackenzie preferred to sleep 
outside. Learning this, the chief had a fire built, and boards placed 
on the ground. Soon a large dish of salmon roes, pounded tine and 
beat up with water so as to have the appearance of cream, was 
brought. A seasoning had been added which gave it a bitter taste. 
Another dish soon followed, the principal ingredient of which was 
also salmon roes, with a large proportion of gooseberries, and an herb 
which appeared to be sorrel. This was more agreeable to the taste 
than the former preparation. Mackenzie concludes this account by 
stating that "having been regaled with these delicacies, for such they 
were considered by that hospitable spirit which provided them, we 
laid ourselves down to rest with no other canopy than the sky ; but I 
never enjoyed a more refreshing rest, though I had a board for my 
bed and a billet for my pillow." 

AN INDIAN BREAKFAST. At five o'clock next morning the Indians 
had replenished the tire and were out sitting beside it. The chief 
had brought roasted salmon and berries gooseberries, whortleberries, 
and raspberries, of very fine quality. Dried roes were also brought 
to eat with the berries. Fish is the only sort of animal food of whicli 
this tribe partakes. "Flesh," says Mackenzie, "they never taste. 
One of their dogs which had picked up and swallowed part of a bone 
remaining from the venison our party had left, was beaten by 
his master till he disgorged it. A bone of the deer having been 
thrown into the river, a native who had observed the circumstance 
immediately dived and brought it up, and having consigned it to the 
fire, instantly proceeded to wasli his polluted hands. A difficulty 
occurred in procuring a canoe from the chief on account of our having 
venison along, which he explained the fish would smell and abandon 
the river, so that he, his friends and relations would starve. The 
venison \vas given to some flesh-eating strangers present, and two 


canoes procured which brought the party to the next village before 

A FISH TRAP HUGGING. On the way down they passed a fish- 
weir of elaborate construction. Mackenzie was surrounded by the 
natives on his arrival with every mark of friendship. An elderly 
man broke through the crowd and took Mackenzie in his arms. He 
was turned away by another man without any ceremony, who 
went through the same hugging performance. These embraces, 
although rather surprising, were their way of expressing regard and 
friendship. Space was opened to allow a young man to approach. 
On being offered Mackenzie's hand, he broke the string of a handsome 
robe of sea-otter skin which lie had on and placed it on Mackenzie, 
who considered it the most flattering gift which could be made, as it 
came from the chief's son. The party were next conducted to the 
house, where a feast of salmon and oil was prepared. A portion of 
the inner rind of hemlock bark mixed with salmon oil, saved whilst 
the salmon is being baked, was supplied as a very great delicacy. 
This feast and reception lasted three hours. The young chief was 
presented with a blanket in return for the robe. A lodge was erected 
for the reception of the party during the night. Abundance of 
salmon were caught at the foot of the weir, with dipping-nets. A 
pair of scissors, amongst other articles, were given to the chief, who 
immediately began to crop his beard, which was of considerable 

A GREAT FEAST AND HOSPITALITY. The village buildings were 
visited, and are described at length in Mackenzie's journal He esti- 
mated the number of inhabitants at two hundred. He describes their 
mode of preserving salmon as follows : "Before the door of the chiefs 
residence were four heaps of salmon, each of which contained 
between three and four hundred fish. Sixteen women were employed 
in cleaning and preparing them. They first separate the head from 
the body, the former of which they boil ; they then cut the latter 
down the back on each side of the bone, leaving one-third of the fish 
adhering to it, and taking out the entrails. The bone is roasted for 
immediate use, and the other parts are dressed in the same manner, 
but with more attention, for future provision. While the roasting is 
proceeding before the fire, troughs are placed under to receive the 
oil. The roes are also preserved." In his journal Mackenzie also 
remarks : " Soon after I retired to rest last night, the chief paid me 
a visit to insist on my going to his bed-companion and taking my 


place himself ; but notwithstanding his repeated entreaties, I resisted 
this offer of the height of hospitality." 

next day, accompanied by four of the natives in a large canoe. A short 
call was made at a house occupied by parties of some importance. A 
repast was provided. The stay was made as short as possible. In a 
very short time the rapidity of the current carried the canoe to 
another large house. The natives received the party kindly, but did 
not offer any refreshments. They were all actively employed at 
various branches of industry beating the inner rind of cedar bark to . 
a fine fibre, spinning, weaving, and the men fishing. Proceeding 
onwards they came to a cascade, and afterwards to a large fall, above 
which the canoe was left. The luggage was carried along a road for 
a hundred yards to a village, consisting of six large houses erected on 
posts twenty-five feet from the ground. From these houses Mackenzie 
could perceive the termination of the river, and where it entered into 
a narrow arm of the sea. They remained during the night in one of the 
outhouses. From a note in the journal it appears that Mr. Johnstone, 
one of Vancouver's officers, had been at those houses on the first of 
June. It would have been a happy meeting if the two great explorers 
(Vancouver and Mackenzie) had happened to arrive at the same time. 

HE REACHES THE SHORE OF THE PACIFIC. After some difficulty in 
arranging with the natives for a canoe, a start was made for the goal, 
which was reached by eight o'clock; and Mackenzie, on the 20th of 
July, 1793, stood on the shore of the Pacific Ocean. The situation 
was satisfactory, but not exhilarating. The tide was out. A strong 
wind was blowing from the west. The swell was so high that they 
could not proceed against it with the leaky canoe. They landed in a 
small cove at the right side of the bay, and remained until morning. 
One of the Indians greatly wishing to return was permitted to go, 
as provisions were not in great abundance. The stock on hand was 
only twenty pounds of pemmican, fifteen pounds of rice, and six 
pounds of flour among ten half -starved men, with a leaky canoe on a 
barbarous coast. The Indian was desired to inform his friends that 
the party would return within three nights. 

INSOLENT NATIVES. At forty minutes past four, on the morning 
of the 21st, it was low water. The tide had fallen fifteen feet from 
from high water mark of previous night. Being anxious to obtain an 
observation, Mackenzie left the mouth of the river (Bella Coola) at 
6 a.m., steered W.S.W. for seven miles, had a view down a channel 


which opened, trending to the S.S.W. twelve miles; this passage had 
been named by Vancouver,Burke Channel. Keeping along the northerly 
shore of King Island, a course was steered W.N.W. along Labouchere 
Channel. They were met by three canoes with fifteen men in them. 
One of the men was insolent, and informed Mackenzie that a large 
canoe had lately been in the bay, and that one of them whom he 
called Macubah (Vancouver) had fired on him and his friends, and 
that Bensins (Johnstone) had struck him on the back with the flat 
part of his sword. Seeing some sheds on shore, Mackenzie landed 
there and found them to be ruins of a village. They were followed 
to that spot by ten canoes, each of which contained from three to six 

TOOK REFUGE ox A ROCK. For protection Mackenzie and party 
took possession of a rock, where there was not space for more than 
twice their number, and which could be defended to advantage in the 
event of being attacked. The people in the first three canoes were 
the most troublesome, but after doing their utmost to irritate they 
went away, stealing a hat, handkerchief, and a few other articles. 
He warned his people to be on their guard and to defend themselves 
to the last if violence should be offered. About sunset the other 
boats left. A fire was kindled, "and as for supper there was little of 
that, for the whole daily allowance did not amount to what was 
sufficient for a single meal." The natives did not return during the 
night a close watch, however, was kept two by two in turn. Next 
day two canoes arrived having some pieces of raw seal's flesh. Hunger 
compelled the men to purchase some at a high price. Mr. Mackay 
lighted a bit of touchwood with a burning-glass, in the cover of his 
tobacco box, which so surprised the natives that they exchanged 
the best of their otter skins for it. An observation was taken at noon 
which gave 52 20' 48" N. 

THE INSCRIPTION. The party being very anxious to leave the 
place, departed after having the following inscription in melted grease 
and vermilion painted on the face of the rock at the foot of which 
they slept the previous night : " ALEXANDER MACKENZIE, FROM 

made at a cove north-east three miles, where they could not be easily 
seen, and where they could only be attacked from the front. Having 
completed his observations Mackenzie returned by the way he had 


come, and arrived at the mouth of Bella Coola River early on the 
morning of the 22nd. After a very light breakfast they walked 
through the woods to the first village, carrying their baggage, 
Mackenzie ahead. He met two men advancing, shouting and 
flourishing daggers. Divining their purpose he at once threw down 
his cloak and presented his gun towards them. Fortunately for him 
they knew the effect of firearms, and instantly dropped their daggers. 
.Several other natives soon joined them, and among them Mackenzie 
recognized the man who had formerly been so troublesome, and who 
now repeated the names "Macubah" and " Bensins." The crowd 
then got so near that one of them contrived to get behind Mackenzie, 
and grasped him in his arms. He soon disengaged himself, but could 
not think how the native did not avail himself of the opportunity he 
had of stabbing him with the dagger. They certainly might have 
overpowered him, and although two or three of them might have been 
killed, doubtless Mackenzie would have fallen at last. Had he fallen 
the whole party would certainlv have been slaughtered, and as 
Mackenzie moralizes, " not one would have returned to tell of the 
horrid fate of his companions." As soon as Mackenzie's men 
appeared out of the woods the natives fled. 

lecting the articles which they had stolen, Mackenzie, now to show he 
did not fear them, drew up his men, ordering them to prime their guns 
afresh, and calling the young chief who then appeared, demanded that 
all the articles previously purloined from them should be returned, and 
a supply of fish as an indemnity. After explanation a reconciliation 
took place, the articles were restored, and some fish handed over with 
them. They also supplied poles for pushing up against the current, 
and presented two salmon. Everything else received had been paid 
for. Mackenzie took an observation of the place before he left. He 
found it 52 24' 43" N., and named it Rascal Village. 

river was very slow. The men wished to take a course over the moun- 
tains. To this Mackenzie objected, showing them the difficulty of 
ascending the mountains, and the small amount of provisions left, 
which two days would exhaust. He urged the folly of being alarmed 
at the danger from the natives which might not exist, but with which 
they could grapple. Toiling all day, they persevered, pulling the 
canoe against the current frequently by overhanging branches. At 
length arrived at a house, they were gratified to find their young 


Indian coming with some natives to meet them. A strict watch was. 
kept that night. Thus day after day they toiled up stream, generally 
obtaining supplies of fish from the natives, as well as delicious berries 
of various kinds. They passed many large cedar trees as they went 
along. On the night of the 25th, the party camped beside the river, 
keeping a watch, that the vacillating natives might not take advantage 
of the night. Next morning they arrived safely at FRIENDLY VIL- 
LAGE, where they had, on their westward journey, been so well received 
and hospitably treated. The same kindness was repeated. Roasted 
salmon was offered in abundance. The women were actively engaged 
in boiling berries and salmon roe. 

ARRANGED THEIR PACK-LOADS. Leaving the village, all the men 
accompanied them for nearly a mile. Soon after the natives returned 
a halt was made to make a division of the fish which had been gener- 
ously furnished. Each man was allotted about twenty pounds weight, 
except Mackenzie and Mackay, who were content with a smaller 
allowance. They had also a little flour and a small quantity of pem- 
mican left. A fork of the river was reached shortly after noon, which 
had to be forded. It was three feet deep, and rapid. The sick 
Indian had not recovered sufficiently to wade across, and Mackenzie 
carried him across on his back. They were now ascending the moun- 
tains, by the same route followed in the outward journey. On the 28th 
they reached the spot where they had slept on the 16th, and found 
the buried pemmican in good condition. Continuing the route with 
tine weather, they saw none of the natives. All the hidden provisions 
were recovered. On the 4th of August the place was reached which 
had been left a month before. The progress so far, although very 
fatiguing, was gratifying. They at length reached their canoe, which 
had been left at the Great River. It was found perfectly safe, nor 
had any of the articles been disturbed. Here, Mackenzie says, they 
pitched their tent, made a blazing fire, and he treated himself as well 
as his people to a dram. They had not taken any spirits along with 
them to the sea-coast. The canoe was sent with five men to procure^ 
the provisions and goods which had been hidden farther down the 
river. These were all found intact. 

ABUNDANCE OF SALMON. Several parties of natives now arrived 
from the upper and lower parts of the river. A number of beaver 
robes were purchased. Knives were preferred in exchange. The 
Indians who had charge of the goods and canoe which had been left 
were rewarded with such presents as were most acceptable to them. 


The run of salmon ascending the river was very large. "They were," 
says the journal, "driving up the current in such large shoals that 
the water seemed, as it were, to be covered with the fins of them." 
The water in the river had (August 7) risen at least a foot and a half 
in the last twenty-four hours. A week of incessant toil and suffering 
from cold and wet brought the party on the 16th to the carrying 
place which leads to the first small lake on the height of land where 
are the sources of the great rivers, the Peace River and the Fraser 
River, which Mackenzie supposed was the Columbia. After portaging 
the canoe and effects, they launched on the waters of Peace River and 
glided down this in good spirits and with grateful hearts. They 
came down stream in one day a distance which required seven days 
to come up.. Afterwards several portages had to be made to avoid 
heavy falls. Mackenzie and party arrived at Fort Chipeweyan on 
the 24th of August, 1793, after an absence of eleven months. 

DR. SANDFORD FLEMING'S OPINION. One of the best living autho- 
rities, Dr. Sandford Fleming, writing on this subject, says : " Every 
page of Mackenzie's journal shows that his explorations were not 
effected without constant toil and great privations. The discourage- 
ments arising from the difficulties and dangers he experienced, and 
they were incessant, had no influence on his cool determination and 
dauntless spirit. The many tedious and weary days of physical labor 
and mental strain, the gloomy and inclement nights to which he was 
constantly exposed, were not, however, passed in vain. He gained 
his great reward in the knowledge that lie had in the interests of his 
country attained the object of his design. He had penetrated a vast 
continent, for the most part in a condition of wild nature ; he had 
overcome the obstacles imposed by rapid rivers previously unknown, 
by rugged mountain ranges, by distance, by intervening forests, and 
by the extremes of a variable climate. From time to time obstacles 
presented themselves in the enmity of hostile native tribes, who had 
never before looked upon the face of a white man ; but on the day he 
arrived on the Pacific coast he had the unqualified satisfaction of 
feeling that his undertakings had been crowned with complete success." 

A LONG AGITATED QUESTION SETTLED. His discoveries settled the 
dubious point of a practical " north-west passage." He set at rest 
this long agitated question with the disputes which had arisen regard- 
ing it; he added new regions to the realm of British commerce, and 
in doing so extended the boundaries of geographical science. He did 
much more, although the full effect of all he had accomplished was 


unknown to him. We can now, however, attribute to the enterprises 
to which Mackenzie's discoveries led, that the territory became a 
British province. Indeed it is problematical whether, in the absence 
of his discoveries, any portion of that country would at present con- 
stitute part of the Dominion of Canada. 

THE SERVICES of this famous explorer were appreciated by his 
sovereign, King George III., who bestowed on him the dignity of 
knighthood. On July 20th, 1893, a public meeting of pioneers and 
others was held at Victoria, in centennial commemoration of his 
overland explorations to the Pacific coast. It was resolved that a 
portrait of Sir Alexander Mackenzie should be painted and placed in 
the new legislative buildings now in course of erection in Victoria, 
the capital of British Columbia. A committee was appointed to 
carry the resolution into effect. The portrait was completed without 

The following particulars, fuller than hitherto published, have been 
furnished the author by an old friend, the Rev. Dr. D. Masson, of 
Edinburgh, who is a native of Ross-shire, in the north of Scotland, 
and an enthusiastic student of archaeology and historic lore. He 
wrote under date of May 4th, 1894, that he had just returned from 
a visit to his aged mother in the " Black Isle of Ross," whose home, 
he says, is barely five miles from Fortrose, where Sir Alexander 
Mackenzie's last surviving son died a few weeks ago. There he met 
Sir Alexander's grandson. For years the family have occupied the 
old deanery of Fortrose, which for many generations belonged to Dr. 
Masson's wife's family the old Mathesons, of Bennetsfield. Young 
Mackenzie showed the reverend doctor several relics of his grandfather. 
The portrait of Sir Alexander, with many other tine portraits, still 
adorns the wall of the old house. 

Dr. Masson states that Sir Alexander Mackenzie was born in 
Stornoway, Island of Lewis, and was connected with the old Mac- 
kenzies, of Seaforth, from whom Stornoway, with the whole island 
of which it is the capital, passed more than fifty years ago to its 
present proprietors, the Mathesons of Achay and Ardross. The 
doctor says: "The journal of Sir Alexander's great voyages is full of 
peril and adventure ; is a record of brave work, indomitable 
endurance, and ready, resourceful reliance, such as the annals of 
very few nations, ancient or modern, can display. Unlike the 
modern war correspondent, Sir Alexander did not 'write in pictures.' 
He was a man of action, whose literary style is bare and unadorned. 


He set down the stirring events of the day in his journal, with as 
little thought of color and effect as if he were still sitting at his desk 
in the Company's counting-house, calmly entering the details of 
prices and peltries." 

According to Dr. Masson, Mackenzie's journal was one of the 
favorite books of the first Napoleon. He had it translated into 
French, and a copy of the translation in three volumes was found in 
his library at St. Helena. Through the courtesy of Sir Alexander's 
grandson, the Doctor was enabled to examine these interesting 
volumes, and also to read a most interesting manuscript, in autograph, 
which throws new light on Napoleon's secret schemes in the various 
adjustments and readjustments of his plan of campaign against Great 
Britain. Whilst reading Sir Alexander Mackenzie's journal, he 
conceived the idea of distracting the affairs of Britain by attacking 
her in her Canadian possessions, not by a direct descent upon them, 
but by a route which he expected would take England by surprise, 
and indeed prove infallible. A key of this plan of invasion was to 
be found in Sir Alexander's huge quarto, a copy of which was 
procured in France " through the smugglers," and translated into 
French for the use of Napoleon's right hand tactician. This was 
Bernadotte, father of the king of Sweden, who himself told the story 
at Stockholm to a near descendant of Sir Alexander's family. The 
documentary evidence of this curious bit of missing history the 
Doctor carefully examined. A full copy of it will be found in the 
appendix to " Ballantyne's Pioneers," published in 1888, by James 
Nisbet & Co., London. 

Referring further to this brave Scottish Highlander and heroic 
explorer, Dr. Masson states that "Mackenzie was for a time the 
travelling companion in America of the Duke of Kent, the father of 
our Empress-queen. In acknowledgment of his brave exploits and 
great public services he was honored with knighthood at a time when 
knighthood was not so common a thing as it has come to be in our 
own day. Returning to Scotland," the Doctor continues, " he 
married one of the most beautiful women I ever saw the heiress of 
the Mackenzies of Avoch. As a Highland proprietor and country 
gentleman he was eminently enterprising and popular. It looked as 
if he would leave his mark upon the Highlands as a great agricultural 
improver. But on March 12th, 1820, his eventful, illustrious and 
most useful life was suddenly closed. When returning from London 
by postchaise he was, at Moulin (the modern summer resort of 


Pitlochry), suddenly seized with an internal inflammation, which 
speedily culminated in death. His remains lie in the old churchyard 
at Avoch, beside those of his gifted and beautiful wife, Lady 
Geddes Mackenzie, who survived him until 1860." 

A Scottish newspaper, in an obituary notice of the death of Sir 
Alexander's son, says : " On Wednesday night (28th March, 1894), 
another link of the past was broken by the death of Mr. A. G. 
Mackenzie, of Avoch. The old laird, as he was affectionately and 
respectfully called, was a very great favorite in the district, where he 
had endeared himself by many acts of kindness, not only during his 
residence for the past few years, but on the former occasion in which 
he lived at Avoch House. Mr. Mackenzie was the elder son of the 
well-known American explorer, Sir Alexander Mackenzie, of Avoch, 
and to whom belonged the honor of discovering the great Mackenzie 
River in 1789, the river being appropriately named after its famous 
discoverer. Mr. Mackenzie was born in 1818, and had thus 
considerably gone beyond the allotted threescore years and ten. 
He is survived by three sons and two daughters." 



His VOYAGE NORTH. Returning to his proceedings in 1794, we 
find that Captain Vancouver, after spending the winter at the Sand- 
wich Islands, proceeded north direct to the Alaskan coast to thoroughly 
examine those portions of the mainland southwards which had not 
formerly been surveyed by him. This occupied the whole season. 
He was enabled to report conclusively that no navigable channel 
intersected the continent south of the latitudes which had been 
explored by Captain Cook and himself, and that the conjectured 
hyperborean ocean did not exist. He returned to Nootka in Septem- 
ber, where he remained repairing his vessels until October. During 
that time he enjoyed the companionship of the Spanish commander, 
Alva, and exchanged hospitalities with him. They together paid a 
visit to Chief Maquinna, who prepared a great feast for them. 


RETURN TO ENGLAND. No despatches having arrived from England 
or the Continent of Europe, both commanders, at nearly the same 
date, left Nootka for Monterey, where despatches would first arrive 
by the overland route. It was understood there that no alteration 
would be made from the wording of the first article of the Convention 
of 1790. Vancouver, therefore, proceeded to England via Cape Horn. 
He reached his destination in October, 1795, his mission having been 
highly successful ; and he had the satisfaction of reporting that during 
"the long absence of four years and nine months, the Discovery had 
only lost one man by disease out of the complement of one hundred 
men, and that the Chatham had not lost one man either by illness or 

A GOOD REPORT OF THE NATIVES. He also could report that in 
his extensive dealings with the Indians along many hundred miles of 
the coast, he was not under the necessity of using harsh measures 
with them. His principles were based on humanity and justice. 
The same may be said of other British explorers, who combined trade 
with geographical discoveries, as did Meares, Portlock, Dixon and 
Broughton, who had been trained and disciplined officers in the 
British navy, and were qualified to control the conduct of their sub- 
ordinates. Not so were many of the other adventurers, who were of 
the Kendrick stamp and ready to take undue advantage of the 
unsophisticated natives. This was felt by Vancouver, as the natives 
began to discover how they had been treated by unscrupulous traders. 
When on the northern coast in 1794, before leaving for Nootka, he 
remarks that he was just in time for the accomplishment of the 
arduous and hazardous task in which they had been so long engaged. 
The very unjustifiable conduct of the traders had so encouraged and 
provoked acts of hostility, that even the means he possessed to repel 
their attacks would in all probability have been insufficient, had it 
been their lot to have been obliged to try the experiment one year 

His DEATH IN MAY, 1798. Soon after Vancouver's return to 
England, he was promoted to the rank of post-captain, which is next 
to that of rear admiral, and generally secured some lucrative 
-appointment. Unfortunately, however, his health failed before the 
work he had prepared, which gave an account of his voyage, had been 
published. This was attended to by his brother. He died near 
Petersham on the Thames, about twenty miles west of London, in 
May, 1798, at the early age of forty years. He was buried in the 


cemetery of the ancient church of Petersham. The Hudson Bay 
Company, in 1841, placed in the old church a handsome tablet, which 
is an enduring and graceful tribute to the memory of Vancouver. A 
fac simile of the tablet and a sketch of the church were made by 
Mrs. Beeton, wife of the agent-general for British Columbia in 
London, and appeared in the Illustrated London News of 3rd Decem- 
ber, 1892. A copy of Vancouver's portrait, from an oil painting in 
the National Gallery, London, was presented by Mr. Beeton to the 
Board of Trade in Victoria, from which the portrait in this work was 
photographed. Captain Vancouver named Lynn Canal, on the 
north-west coast (now Alaska), after Lynn, his birthplace, Norfolk, 

THE NOOTKA DIFFICULTY SETTLKD. On the llth of January, 1794, 
the Nootka difficulty was definitely settled at a convention held at 
Madrid. The agreement was signed by the British and Spanish 
ministers, St. Helens and the Duke of Alcudia. It was to the effect 
that commissioners should meet, as soon as possible, on or near the 
spot where stood the buildings formerly occupied by British subjects, 
and there to exchange declaration and counter-declaration as literally 
prescribed in the document, which provided that the preliminaries 
having been complied with, the "British officer shall unfurl the 
British flag over the land thus restored, as a sign of possession, and 
after these formalities the officers of the two crowns shall retire 
respectively to their people from the said port of Nootka." 

pointed to carry into effect the agreement between Spain and Britain 
in 1794, were Lieutenant Cosme Bertodano, on behalf of Spain, and 
Lieutenant Thomas Pierce, of the Marines, on behalf of Britain. 
They sailed from Monterey, with Brigadier-General Alva aboard the 
Activa, for Nootka, on the 22nd of March, 1795. Lieutenant Pierce 
reports to his superior officer as follows : " In obedience to your 
instructions I proceeded from Monterey to Nootka in company with 
Brigadier-General Alva, the officer appointed on the part of the Court 
of Spain, for finally terminating the negotiations relative to that port ; 
where, having satisfied myself respecting the state of the country at 
the time of the arrival of the Spaniards, preparations were imme- 
diately made for dismantling the fort which the Spaniards had erected 
on an island that guarded the mouth of the harbor, and embarking 
the ordnance. By the morning of the 28th, all the artillery were 
embarked, part on board of his Catholic Majesty's ship Activa^ and 


part on board of the San Carlos guard ship. Brigadier-General Alva 
and myself then met, agreeably to our instructions, on the place 
where formerly the British buildings stood, where we signed and 
exchanged the declaration and counter-declaration for restoring those 
lands to his Majesty, as agreed upon between the two Courts, after 
which ceremony I ordered the British flag to be hoisted in token of 
possession, and the General gave orders for the troops to embark." 
Before next year Maquinna and his subjects had transferred their 
village to the site of the abandoned Spanish post. No settlement of 
white men has since been made at Nootka. 

THE BRITISH FLAG. This simple act of restoration by hoisting the 
British flag at Nootka, as mentioned, completed one of the greatest 
victories, although bloodless, which has ever been won by Great 
Britain. Spain, by it, gave up all her exclusive and arrogant claims 
to the north-western part of tne Continent of America. From the 
tenor of the elaborate memorial from the Court of Spain to the 
Convention of 1790, it is plain that then she had no intention of 
abandoning these claims. 

CONFLICTS WITH COLONISTS. This was a critical period in the 
history of the North American continent. Great Britain had been 
engaged in seven bitter conflicts with France and her own colonists 
on the Atlantic coasts. The latter had withdrawn her forces and 
garrison from the citadel of Quebec and ceded Canada to the British. 
The colonists had formed themselves into an independent government 
which styled themselves " The United States of America ; " so that 
the whole of the continent, north of Mexico, with the small strip of 
coast claimed by Russia, was then in possession of Great Britain and 
her seceded colonists. To define and settle the boundaries which 
should belong to each required time and deliberation. No inland 
settlements of white population had as yet been made. The whole of 
the unexplored region north of California was termed Oregon. 

the Pacific, north of the settlements of the Spaniards, which did not 
reach beyond San Francisco, fur traders were now at liberty to carry 
on their traffic in any way they considered most profitable. The 
good examples hitherto shown, and the humane treatment of the 
natives by Captains Cook, Meares, Vancouver, and other early 
British explorers, were neither followed nor practised by subsequent 
dealers. As the coast became better known, and without any 
restraining influence, those traders rushed from cove to village, taking 


every advantage of the unsophisticated natives to obtain the coveted 
furs. Intoxicating liquor of the vilest sort was freely introduced. 
Demoralization and disease followed. The cupidity, greed of gratifi- 
cation and recklessness of the Indians induced them to capture, in 
season and out of season, the valuable sea-otters, which, notwith- 
standing their great numbers, before long showed the effect of 
incessant and indiscriminate hunting. Other evils followed. The 
natives, finding themselves over-reached in trade, and often ill-used, 
became suspicious and revengeful. Their plan of redress generally 
was to inflict punishment on the first party who came to hand, 
whether they were the offenders or not. 

THE SEA-OTTER TRADE. Chief Maquinna still retained the reins 
of power at Nootka. There is little to be said concerning the year 
1796. The sea-otter trade was continued, chiefly northward. Captain 
Broughton, who formerly was with Captain Vancouver, arrived at 
Nootka during the summer. On his way from the Sandwich Islands 
he made a few surveys on the Asiatic coast, and completed certain 
work north of Queen Charlotte Islands. He remained, making 
repairs, two months at ISTootka and neighborhood ; also visiting the 
Straits of Fuca and Neah Bay. During 1797 and 1798, the vessels 
which arrived on the north-west coast were chiefly from Boston. 
Two years were generally required by them to complete their trips. 
Richard J. Cleveland, in a vessel from Massachusetts, obtained a 
very large quantity of prime sea-otter skins, in 1797, from Queen 
Charlotte Islands. 

GREAT PROFITS. The number of sea-otter skins from the north- 
wetet coast sold in China, in 1785, '6, '7, not including those secured 
by Meares's operations, is stated to have been 5,800, value $160,700. 
From 1799 to 1802 inclusive, the numbers for each of those years 
respectively are given at 11,000, 9,500, 14,000, and 14,000, or a total 
of 48,500, which, at an average of $30 per skin, amounts to nearly 
one and a half million dollars. Frequently the profits were enormous. 
A celebrated trader, named Sturgis, states that he had personally 
collected 6,000 skins in a single voyage, and that he once purchased 
560, of prime quality, in half a day. In 1801, which was the most 
flourishing period of the trade, fifteen United States vessels were 
engaged trading on the west coast, but only one British. During this 
year the United States vessels brought 18,000 skins to China. In 
succeeding years the catch became smaller and smaller until the year 
880, when the trade was centred in San Francisco. The average 


catch then was 5,500 per annum, which at an average price of 
per skin, would equal $440,000. 

of Boston, the trader already mentioned, speaking of otter skins, says : 
" A full grown, prime, which has been stretched before drying, is 
about five feet long and twenty-four to thirty inches wide, covered 
with very fine fur, about three-fourths of an inch in length, having a 
rich jet black, glossy surface, and exhibiting a silver color when 
blown open. Those are esteemed the finest which have some white 
hairs interspersed and scattered over the whole surface, and a per- 
fectly white head. . . . Otters are sometimes seen many leagues 
from land, sleeping on their backs on the surface of the water, with 
their young ones reclining on their breast. . . . The cubs are 
incapable of swimming until they are several months old. . . . She 
will not leave her young ones in the moment of danger, and therefore 
shares their fate. . . . They are unable to remain under water 
longer than two minutes. . . . The male otter is, beyond all com- 
parison, more beautiful than the female. . . . Skins of this animal 
taken in the Corean and Japan seas are superior to those of Russia 
or the north-western coast of America. . . . Nothing can be more 
beautiful than one of these animals when seen swimming, especially 
when on the look-out for any object. At such times it raises its head 
quite above the surface." The number now caught on the coast of 
British Columbia is very limited. A prime skin is sold as high as 
one hundred and thirty dollars. 

THE FATE OF DESERTERS. The ship Manchester, of Philadelphia, 
touched at Nootka, in 1802. She had a rich and valuable cargo, 
which was obtained in England. Seven of her crew deserted whilst 
at Nootka, and placed themselves under Maquinna's protecting care. 
Shortly afterwards they attempted to desert to another chief tain r 
but were captured and put to death in the most cruel manner. 

TROUBLE WITH CHIEF MAQUINNA. Next year, 1803, the ship 
Boston, Captain John Salter, sailed from Boston and reached Nootka, 
direct without calling at any other port. She anchored a short dis- 
tance along the cove beyond Maquinna's village, and the crew were for 
several days engaged in obtaining wood and water. In the meantime 
Maquinna and his people visited the ship daily, and were entertained 
as was usual in such cases. To Maquinna the captain presented a 
double-barrelled fowling-piece, with which he expressed himself well 
pleased. After the ship was nearly ready to depart, Maquinna came 


aboard with a gift of wild ducks, bringing back the gun with one of 
the locks broken, remarking that it was peshak, or bad. Captain 
Halter took offence at the expression, told the chief he was a liar, and 
adding some other opprobrious terms, took the gun from him and 
tossed it indignantly into the cabin. Maquinna, who knew enough 
of English to understand what the captain said, did not utter a word 
in reply, but smothered his rage ; and when the captain was speak- 
ing, repeatedly put his hand to his throat, and rubbed it across his 
breast. This he did, as he afterwards told Jewitt, " to keep down his 
heart, which he said was rising in his throat and choking him." 

INDIAN TACTICS. Soon afterwards, Maquinna went ashore full of 
vengeance for the insults which had been offered to him. He con- 
nected the present with former bad usage which he had received from 
other parties, and thought it would be a good opportunity to wipe out 
old scores. Several of his chiefs had been killed by the Spaniards 
and by peshak whites, who during his absence had carried off forty 
otter skins, had frightened his women and had committed sundry 
offences. He resolved to .capture the Boston, and slaughter all on 
board. They were all guilty from his point of view. On the follow- 
ing morning the natives came aboard with salmon, and remained 
around the deck as usual. About noon, Maquinna and several subor- 
dinate chiefs arrived, and being examined as was customary, were 
allowed on board. At an interview with Captain Salter, Maquinna 
expressed contrition for his conduct on the preceding day. He asked 
and received permission to have a dance and frolic with his followers, 
to make up for the past misunderstanding. It was arranged that 
nine of the ship's men should go and procure salmon some distance 
away. Maquinna was dressed fantastically for the dance. He had 
on a frightful mask and carried a whistle in his hand. He appeared 
remarkably gay and good-humored. 

CAPTURE OF THE " BOSTON." As soon as the ship's boats had left, 
the performance commenced; the Indians capered around the deck, 
entertaining the crew with all sorts of antics and gestures, keeping 
time with the music of the chief's whistle. Other Indians were 
allowed to come aboard the ship to see the sports. The armorer of 
the ship, John R. Jewitt, gives the following particulars in a book 
published in 1807, in Boston: "Shortly after the departure of the 
boats, I went down to my vise-bench in the steerage, where I was 
employed in cleaning muskets. I had not been there more than an 
hour, when I heard the men hoisting in the long boat, which in a few 


minutes after was succeeded by a great bustle and confusion on deck. 
T immediately ran up the steerage stairs, but scarcely was my head 
above deck, when I was caught by the hair by one of the savages, 
and lifted from my feet. Fortunately for me, my hair being short, 
and the ribbon with which it was tied slipping, I fell from his hold 
into the steerage. As I was falling he struck at me with an axe, 
which cut a deep gash on my forehead and penetrated the skull ; but 
in consequence of his losing his hold, I luckily escaped the full force 
of the blow. I fell stunned and senseless on the floor." 

JEWITT'S ACCOUNT. On regaining consciousness, Jewitt found the 
hatch closed, and by the yells of the savages concluded they were in 
possession of the ship. Presently he was brought before Maquinna, 
and promised his life on condition of becoming a slave and making 
weapons for his master. On the quarter-deck he was shown, in a 
ghastly line, the heads of twenty-five murdered companions, and was 
ordered to identify each by name. John Thompson, sail-maker, was 
discovered in the hold along with Jewitt, where he had concealed 
himself. His life was spared, Jewitt representing him as his father. 
The ship was then towed to Friendly Cove and beached, when the 
cargo was taken out and distributed among the tribe. In a few days 
afterwards the vessel was burned. 

ARRIVAL OF THE " LYDIA." The two survivors lived among the 
savages in Maquinna's service until 1805, when the Lydia, Captain 
Hill, anchored at Nootka. Since the massacre of the crew of the 
Boston, traders avoided the place. Maquinna, desirous of renewing 
old commercial relations, got Jewitt to write a letter of introduction 
to Captain Hill, the chief himself to be the bearer. The letter, 
however, contained a request that Maquinna should be held a captive 
until Jewitt and Thompson were released, which was required to be 
done without delay. The request was complied with. The two men 
now free, proceeded along with the Lydia, and reached Boston via 
China before the end of 1807. Jewitt was an Englishman only 
twenty years of age at the time of his capture. 

ANOTHER ATTACK. In 1805, a Boston ship, Captain Porter, was 
attacked by the savages in Millbank Sound. A number of them were 
on board trading, when the captain noticed some of them cutting the 
cable by which the ship was secured. He fired his blunderbuss, killing 
six of the natives. In the scrimmage which succeeded, the captain 
and six seamen were killed, after which the other seamen succeeded 
in repelling the assailants and saving the vessel. Captain Porter was 


stabbed in the back and thrown overboard. This year the United 
States explorers, Lewis and Clarke, readied the mouth of the 
Columbia River overland from the head waters of the Missouri. A 
Russian vessel, the Juno, Captain DeWolf, also made a visit along 
the western coast, calling at Nootka and the mouth of the Columbia. 

A RUSSIAN PROJECT. The trade of shipping spars from the 
Columbia River was initiated in 1806, by the Lydia, on her return 
from the cruise north with Jewitt and Thompson aboard. The same 
year the Russian inspector, Rezanof, purchased the Juno for his 
company at Archangel. He urged on his company and his govern- 
ment the importance of founding a Russian establishment on the 
Columbia River, with a view of gaining exclusive possession of the 
fur trade. To accomplish this, he considered it would be necessary 
to build, as soon as possible, an armed brig to drive away the 
" Bostonians " from this trade'forever. " From the Columbia," he said, 
" we could gradually advance toward the south to the port of San 
Francisco. I think I may say," he continues, " that at the Columbia 
we could attract population from various localities, and in the course 
of ten years we should become strong enough to make use of any 
favorable turn in European politics to include the coast of California 
in the Russian possessions." 

TRADING-POST ON THE COLUMBIA. The Russians now took an active 
part in the trade of the coast, and made arrangements with certain 
traders to hunt on shares. The " Winships," wealthy ship-owners, 
continued to carry on an extensive trade in 1808, '9, '10, and had 
planned a permanent settlement or trading-post on the Columbia 
River. A site was selected at a place called Point Oak, on the 
southern bank, about forty miles from the mouth. After considerable 
progress had been made on a building, and in preparing land for 
crops, an inundation forced them to move to a higher spot near by. 
The hostile attitude of the Indians caused the project to be abandoned 
altogether, although the Indians might have been easily controlled 
during the ship's presence, it was not deemed safe to leave a small 
party exposed to such danger. 

ASTORIA FOUNDED. John Jacob Astor, of New York, who had 
accumulated a considerable fortune in fur dealing, instituted in 1810 
the Pacific Fur Company, with Astoria, at the mouth of the Columbia 
River, as its emporium. He hoped to establish a line of posts across 
the Rocky Mountains, within the United States territory, and so 
become the great fur monopolist of the whole country. After the 


war of 1812 between Great Britain and the United States, British 
fur-traders were prohibited by Congress from carrying on their 
business within the territory of the United States, so that Mr. Astor 
found himself with no more advantages than others. 

THE ILL-FATED SHIP "ToNQUiN." To supply Mr. Astor's establish- 
ment at Astoria, the ship Tonguin, Captain Jonathan Thorn, left 
.New York in September, 1810, and entered the Columbia in March, 
1811. Captain Thorn had for principal officer, Alexander Mackay, 
who had in 1792-93 accompanied Alexander Mackenzie in his journey 
to the Pacific coast. After landing the Astoria portion of the cargo 
and arranging the preliminary work of the post, Captain Thorn 
departed on a trading voyage northward with a company of twenty- 
three men, including officers. They sailed until they reached 
Vancouver Island and Clayoquot Sound, which was then, the report 
says, inhabited by a powerful tribe the Wah-en-ishes. These people 
came aboard to barter furs for merchandise, and conducted themselves 
in the most friendly manner during the first day. The same evening 
information was brought on board by an Indian, whom the officers 
had engaged as an interpreter, that the tribe was ill-disposed and 
intended attacking the ship next day. Captain Thorn, whose conduct 
during the voyage, arid especially during the short stay made at the 
Sandwich Islands, showed him to be tyrannical and obstinate, affected 
to disbelieve the news. 

DEATH OF ALEXANDER MACKAY. Next morning the savages came 
around the vessel in great numbers. Mackay advised caution, and 
ordered seven men aloft to unfurl the sails. In the meantime the 
captain permitted about fifty Indians to come on board. They 
immediately began to exchange otter skins for blankets and knives. 
The blankets they threw into their canoes, but secreted the knives. 
As had been previously arranged by them, when armed they moved 
from the quarter-deck to different parts of the vessel, so that when 
everything was in readiness they were so distributed that at least 
three savages were opposite to every man on the ship. At a given 
signal they rushed on their prey, and notwithstanding the brave 
resistance of the crew on deck, every individual was butchered in a 
few minutes. 

attempting to descend, lost two of their men, besides one mortally 
wounded, who, notwithstanding his weakened condition, made good 
his retreat with the four others to the cabin. The interpreter escaped 


and was secreted by the women. He afterwards reached Astoria 
and reported the affair. Those in the cabin found loaded arms, and 
began firing on their savage assailants through the skylights and the 
companion-way, which had the effect of clearing the ship in a 
short time, and long before night the five men had full possession. 
Whether from lack of ability to navigate the vessel back to the 
Columbia River or want of courage, the four men who were unhurt 
left in the long boat early the following morning. They wished the 
wounded man to accompany them, but he refused, saying he must 
die before Jong and was as well in the vessel as elsewhere. 

MAGAZINE BLOWN UP. Soon after sunrise, the Tonquin was 
surrounded by a great number of Indians in canoes. They came for 
the purpose of unloading her, but from the warm parting they got on 
the previous day, did not seem forward in boarding. The wounded 
man. however, showed himself at the railing, made signs that he was 
alone and wanted their assistance, on which some ventured on board 
and found what he said was true. They spoke to their people, who 
then came aboard quickly, so that in a very short time the deck was 
considerably thronged, and they proceeded to undo the hatches 
without any further ceremony. No sooner were they completely 
engaged in this, than the only survivor of the crew descended to the 
cabin, and having everything in readiness, set tire to the magazine, 
containing nearly nine thousand pounds of gunpowder, which, in an 
instant, blew the vessel and everyone on board to atoms. The 
Indian nation acknowledged having lost one hundred warriors, beside 
a vast number of wounded, by the explosion, which included those in 
canoes around the ship. The four men who set off in the long boat 
were, two or three days afterwards, driven ashore in a gale and 
massacred by the natives. The interpreter was detained two years 
in slavery before he effected his escape. 

INTOXICATING LIQUOR PLAYS HAVOC. Whilst on the sea-board of 
the Pacific, the natives were yearly becoming more demoralized, 
more passionately fond of intoxicating liquor, which was supplied to 
them ad libitum by many of the masters of trading- vessels to whom 
the demoralization of the people was a matter of indifference so long- 
as they were enabled to fill their ships with furs, the North-West 
Company were extending their trade westward, following at first the 
course of travel which Sir Alexander Mackenzie took in his 
exploratory trip to the Pacific coast in 1792-93. 




THE NORTH-WEST COMPANY. Mr. Simon Fraser's explorations 
next come in order. They have exercised considerable influence on 
the history of British Columbia. Fraser entered the service of the 
North- West Company in 1792, at the age of nineteen; ten years 
later he became a partner. In 1805 a conference was held at Fort 
William, north shore of Lake Superior, to discuss the advisability of 
extending the operations of the Company beyond the Rocky Moun- 
tains, for the purpose of occupying the territory. This action was 
taken to anticipate the United States explorers and traders who 
might advance northward and establish a claim to ownership by 
right of discovery and occupation. It was decided that trading-posts 
should be established in the then unknown territory, and possession 
should in this way be taken of it. The duty of carrying out this 
project was assigned to Mr. Fraser. He soon afterwards left Fort 
William, made his way to Lake Athabasca, and ascended Peace River 
to a suitable place in the mountains, where he established a trading 
post, which he named Rocky Mountain Portage. Placing men in 
charge, he continued his journey to McLeod Lake, which he discov- 
ered, and where he established Fort McLeod. 

STUART RIVER AND LAKE. He portaged to Fraser River in 1806. 
At that date it was regarded as the main stream of the Columbia, or 
one of its principal affluents. Leaving the Fraser River, he ascended 
a tributary flowing from the westward, now known as Stuart River, 
and so named from a companion in the service, Mr. John Stuart. 
He traced this stream to Stuart Lake ; he here established a trading- 
post, the present Fort St. James. He penetrated to Fraser Lake, 
another of his discoveries, and there also he established a trading- 

ARRIVAL OF CANOES AND SUPPLIES. In 1807, two canoes with 
goods from Athabasca reached him, under the charge of Messrs. 
Quesnel and Parries ; at the same time he received letters urging him 
to carry on his explorations to the ocean, by the river flowing through 


the country to the south, in anticipation of parties from the United 
States who were displaying some activity at this date ; Lewis and 
Clark having been sent out by the United States government to the 
Pacific coast. This year Mr. Fraser established another post, Fort 
George, on the main stream. The name New Caledonia was applied 
to the whole territory. 

PREPARATIONS COMPLETED. In the spring of 1808, Mr. Fraser, 
with Messrs. John Stuart, Jules Maurice Quesnel, and a crew of 
nineteen men and two Indians, embarked in four well-furnished 
canoes to explore the unknown waters, which were regarded as the 
main affluent of the Columbia. They left Fort George on May 26th, 
where the river is described as three hundred yards wide, with a 
strong current. They reached its mouth on July 1st, and found the 
latitude to be about 49, establishing that the river was a separate 
and distinct stream and not the Columbia, which it was then known 
entered the ocean in 46 20'. 

FRIENDLY INDIANS. For a few days after leaving Fort George, 
the expedition made rapid progress. Sir Alexander Mackenzie had, 
fifteen years earlier, passed over some extent of the distance to the 
point where, on the advice of the Indians, he turned back, to follow 
a trail westward to the sea. The Indians whom Mr. Fraser met 
were friendly, and gave him similar advice; they informed him that 
the descent of the river was extremely dangerous, that he could not 
go on, and that the whole party would meet destruction if they made 
the attempt. The object of the undertaking being' to follow the river 
to the mouth, Fraser declined to turn back. The verification of the 
Indian description of the navigation was not long delayed, for in a 
short time appalling difficulties were encountered. 

FRASER'S JOURNAL. A narrative of the journey in Fraser's journal, 
published a few years ago by Senator Masson, furnishes the following 
extracts: "On June 1st, five days after they started, the river nar- 
rowed to a canyon, in which they lost one of their three canoes." On 
the 5th, the river contracted to a width of not over thirty yards, 
between precipices, the water "turbulent, noisy and awful to behold." 
They made a portage of a mile over most difficult ground, leaving the 
men harassed by fatigue. On the 6th, finding a cascade and whirl- 
pool hemmed in by huge rocks, to avoid portaging they lightened the 
canoes and ran the rapids. On the 9th, "the .channel contracted to 
about forty yards, and is enclosed by two precipices of immense 
height, which, bending towards each other, make it narrower above 


than below. The water which rolls down this extraordinary passage 
in tumultuous waves and with great velocity, had a frightful appear- 
ance. However, it being absolutely impossible to carry canoes by 
land, all hands without hesitation embarked as it were a corps perdu 
upon the mercy of the awful tide. . . . Skimming along as fast as 
lightning, the crews, cool and determined, followed each other in 
awful silence, and when we arrived at the end, we stood gazing at 
each other in silent congratulation on our narrow escape from total 

ABANDONED THE CANOES. Eraser's journal further states : "This 
afternoon the rapids were very bad ; two in particular were worse, if 
possible, than any we had hitherto met with, being a continual series 
of cascades, intercepted with rocks and bounded by precipices and 
mountains that seemed at times to have no end." At last they found 
the navigation wholly impracticable, while the precipitous river sides 
had a most forbidding aspect. Even men of their nerve could 
proceed no further on the foaming stream. On the 10th they were 
compelled to abandon the canoes and many articles not absolutely 
required. They started to travel the rugged banks on foot, each 
with a load of eighty pounds. 

walking would baffle description ; only those who know the river can 
imagine what these travellers endured, passing along the declivity of 
mountains, ascending and descending rugged rocks, crossing ravines 
and climbing precipices. Thus they continued for nine days, until 
they reached a large and rapid river flowing from the east. This was 
named Thompson River, after David Thompson, astronomer to the 
North-West Company, who shortly afterwards founded Fort Kamloops 
at some distance up the river. 

JACKASS MOUNTAIN. That part of the bank now known as Jackass 
Mountain was reached on the 20th. The journal reads : " The ascent 
was dangerous; stones and fragments of rocks were continually giving 
way from our feet and rolling off in succession. The ascent (on the 
25th) was perfectly perpendicular ; one of the Indians climbed to the 
summit, and by means of a long pole, drew us up one after the 
other. This work took three hours ; thus we continued our course, 
up hills and down, and along the steep declivities of mountains, 
where hanging rocks and projecting cliffs at the edge of the bank of 
the river, made the passage so small as to render it at times difficult 
for one person to pass sideways." 


SPUZZUM. They arrived at what is now called Spuzzum, on the 
26th ; on the 29th they emerged from the canyon, and were for- 
tunate enough to obtain a canoe from the Indians in the neigh- 
borhood, by means of which they reached tide water on July 1st. 
The Indians on the coast were exceedingly troublesome, so Fraser 
was obliged to hasten his departure. With his party he started on 
July 3rd, returning by the route they name, and reached their 
starting-point, Fort George, on the 6th of August. 



DAVID THOMPSON, THE ASTKONOMER. Communication to the in- 
terior of New Caledonia from the Pacific was not rendered available by 
the Columbia River route until after David Thompson, already men- 
tioned, had reached Fort Astoria, which he did in 1811, but not by 
the route from Athabasca. Mr. Thompson was of Welsh parentage. 
He was born in 1770, and received his education at "The Grey Coat 
School," London. He entered the service of the Hudson Bay Com- 
pany in 1789, and proceeded to Fort Churchill, where he remained 
five years. During the succeeding nine years he was engaged in 
making surveys of the Rivers Nelson, Churchill, Saskatchewan and 
their tributaries, frequently visiting York Factory during that period. 

JOINED THE NORTH-WEST COMPANY. Having completed his en- 
gagement with the Hudson Bay Company, he joined the North- West 
Company in 1797, when he went to the Grand Portage, near Lake 
Superior. Following his duties as astronomer and geographer to the 
Company, for a number of years he was present with the Mandan 
Indians in Missouri, at Lac La Biche, Lake Athabasca, the Rocky 
Mountains, and nearly all the stations of the Company throughout 
the vast territory. 

NUMEROUS AND DIFFICULT JOURNEYS. He made several attempts 
to cross the Rocky Mountains farther south than the Peace River 
Pass used by Mackenzie and Fraser. In 1800, he entered the moun- 
tains at the head waters of the Bow River by the same pass as that 
now followed by the Canadian Pacific Railway. He descended one 


of the branches of the Columbia, but was compelled by hostile Indians 
to return. In 1807, he was again in the Rocky Mountains, passing 
by what is now known as Howe's Pass. This time he reached the 
Columbia River, and ascended it to the source, where he built Fort 
Kootenay. In 1808, he descended River Kootenay to Kootenay 
Lake, where he entered into trade relations with the Flathead 
Indians of that country. He returned to Fort Kootenay by another 
route, descended the Columbia to Blackberry River, and recrossed 
the mountains by Howe's Pass. His party had collected a consider- 
able quantity of furs, which they brought to Rainy Lake House, 
which they reached August 2nd. His party and himself suffered 
much hardship on the expedition. 

KICKING HORSE PASS. Mr. Thompson again started west on 
August 4th, and arrived at the Columbia River, October 3rd ; this 
time probably by Kicking Horse Pass, now used by the Canadian 
Pacific Railway, as in his notes he mentions that rapid river as 
flowing westward. He went as far as Kootenay and made explorations 
in that region, and collected furs which his party brought east with 
them. There is some confusion of dates in Mr. Thompson's account 
about this time, but it appears that, late in the autumn of 1810, he 
ascended Athabasca River to its source, and crossed the mountains by 
what is now known as the Athabasca Pass to the Columbia, where he 
arrived early in January, 1811. He spent the remainder of the winter 
at the mouth of Canoe River, at the Big Bend of the Columbia, and 
early in the spring left for the mouth of the Columbia, but he did not 
follow the stream with the current as was the general method, but 
ascended the river to its source, crossed McGillivray portage and 
descended Kootenay River, thence by Pend d' Oreille and Spokane 
Rivers. On June 19th he reached the falls of the Columbia at the 
point where Fort Colville was subsequently erected, and thence 
followed the main river to the Pacific coast, where he arrived on 
July 15th. 

THE PACIFIC FUR COMPANY. Mr. Thompson was kindly received 
by the officers of the Pacific Fur- Company, who had arrived a few 
weeks earlier, and were then establishing Fort Astoria. He remained 
a few days, and returned as he came to Fort Colville, thence by 
Arrow Lakes and the Columbia to the mouth of Canoe River, the 
point whence he had started a few months previously. It is probable 
that before he returned east he proceeded to the Thompson River, 


located Fort Kamloops, and defined the future route to and from 
Athabasca through New Caledonia. 

DEPENDENT ON INDIANS FOR FOOD. In the meantime, Mr. Fraser's 
colleagues were actively engaged in extending the trade of the Com- 
pany in the interior. It was demonstrated by Mr. Fraser that a 
portion of Fraser River was impracticable for navigation and could 
not be used. This will readily be conceded by modern travellers on 
the Canadian Pacific Railway, as they are carried comfortably in the 
train which runs along the Fraser from the confluence of the Thomp- 
son, and as they look with astonishment and awe on the frowning 
precipices along which Mr. Fraser and his party made their toilsome 
and dangerous way. That journey throughout had required the 
greatest nerve and courage. The travellers on the lower section of 
the route were dependent on the Indians for food, which consisted of 
dried fish, berries and roots. Except on the upper section of the 
interior previously visited by Mackenzie, none of the tribes on the 
route had ever before seen the face of a white man. Great caution 
and prudence were required to avoid awakening the enmity of the 

SIMON FRASER'S RETIREMENT. Mr. Fraser remained in the service 
of the Company for some years after the exploration of the river which 
has been named in his honor. After his retirement from the position 
which he occupied he was offered a knighthood, but declined the title 
on account of his limited wealth. He died at St. Andrews, near 
Montreal, in 1863, at the age of eighty-nine. Mr. Sandford Fleming, 
in a paper read before the Royal Society of Canada, 8th May, 1889, 
states that Mr. Fraser died poor, leaving no provision for his family, 
three of whom survive him, viz., his daughter, Catherine Harriet 
Fraser, who resides in Cornwall, Province of Ontario, and her two 
brothers William, who lives in Hamilton, Ont., and Roderick, in St. 
Andrews, county of Stormont. 

same interesting paper, Mr. Fleming, referring to Mr. David 
Thompson, says that, in 1799, he married Charlotte Small, aged 
fifteen. He lived to be eighty-seven, dying at Longueuil, opposite 
Montreal, in extreme poverty. His widow followed him to the 
grave in a few weeks. Bancroft says of David Thompson : " No 
man performed more valuable services or estimated his achievements 
more modestly." He was well educated, and his meteorological and 
astronomical observations to this day command respect. Three of his 


daughters survive : Mrs. G. E. Shaw, of Peterborough, Ontario ; Mrs. 
R. Scott, Evansville, Indiana, and Miss Thompson, Ivanhoe, Ohio. 

BANCROFT'S OPINION. The North- West Company had thus obtained 
a footing in New Caledonia, and, through their enterprising leaders 
and explorers, were in a position to increase their trade. Bancroft 
speaking of them pays them the following high compliment : "Of all 
associations formed at any time or place for the purpose of obtaining 
the skins of fur-bearing animals, the North- West Company, of 
Montreal, was the most daring, dashing, audacious and ultimately 
successful. It energy was only surpassed by the apathy of its great 
chartered rival which had been in existence 113 years. Canada had 
been twenty years in British possession when it was organized, 
without assistance, privileges, or government favors, by a few Scotch 
Canadians for the better prosecution of a business with which they 
were all more or less familiar." 

SCOTTISH SHREWDNESS AND ENERGY. " Infusing into their traffic 
the spirit of adventure and enterprise, these associates pushed the 
fur trade beyond Lake Superior to 'Winnipeg, Saskatchewan and 
Athabasca, and finally overspread the then new North- West. It was 
they who found the River Mackenzie and followed it to the Frozen 
Ocean ; it was they who ascended Peace River, crossed the Rocky 
Mountains, planted posts upon their western slopes, and traversed 
the country to the Pacific ; it was they who^ by their Scotch shrewd- 
ness and resistless energy, after absorbing the Canada trade took 
possession of the north-west coast, swept Astor from the Columbia 
and brought the monster monopoly itself upon its knees. 5 ' 

FORMATION OF THE COMPANY. The Company was formed in the 
winter of 1783-4, by the larger part of the wealthiest and most 
influential of the merchants of Montreal. The number of shares 
originally was sixteen. Among the partners were Simon McTavish, 
Benjamin and Joseph Frobisher, MacGillivray, Recheblave, Fraser 
and others. Messrs. Pond, Pangman, Gregory, McLeod and the 
afterwards famous Alexander Mackenzie were admitted to the 
partnership in 1787, and the number of shares was increased to 
twenty. The company then included the best mercantile men in the 
country the choicest of Canadian ""fur-traders. The partners were 
not required to pay any money into the concern, but every partner 
must be a strong man in some one particular branch of the business. 

PLAN OF OPERATIONS. It was worked in this way : The two 
wealthiest commercial establishments in Montreal were those of the 


Messrs. Frobishers and Simon McTavish. These two distinct houses, 
while continuing their regular business, acted conjointly as agents of 
the North-West Company in Montreal. They were to supply the 
necessary capital for conducting the business, and were to receive 
interest on the money actually used in the Company's transactions. 
They were to obtain supplies from England, have the goods on hand 
in Montreal, according to the requirements of the trade, and packed 
and shipped to the Grand Portage, on the north of Lake Superior, 
where the French-Canadians formerly had a rendezvous, and where the 
North-West Company then made their headquarters ; bringing there 
every spring the furs collected and sending thence fresh supplies for 
the interior. To this rendezvous two of the Montreal agents pro- 
ceeded every year to attend to the transfer business, for which service 
the Montreal partners received a commission in addition to dividends 
on their shares. 

WINTERING PARTNERS. The other proprietors were to spend their 
time in the Indian country, managing the business with the assistance 
of clerks, remaining during the winter in the fur-trading districts, and 
were termed "wintering partners." They were not obliged to furnish 
capital, but ability and energy ; and even then such was the skill and 
influence of some of them that they held two shares, with one of which 
they might at any time retire from active service, each naming a clerk 
as his successor, who was entitled to the other share. It was a perfect 
system an admirable combination of skill and capital founded not 
on speculative theory but on actual experience and practical necessity. 

PARTNERSHIP. It was no easy matter to obtain admission into 
this partnership. It could only be accomplished by long and arduous 
service ; money was no object, ability was everything. It was what 
the candidate could perform, not his relationship which secured him 
the position. Clerks succeeded to partnership after a five or seven 
years' apprenticeship, receiving one hundred pounds sterling for the 
term, according to priority and merit. If, at the expiration of their 
apprenticeship, there was no immediate vacancy in the partnership, 
a salary of from one hundred to three hundred pounds per annum, 
was allowed according to merit, until they could take their place 
as partners. 

INTERPRETERS RECEIVE EXTRA PAY. Apprentices, during their 
initiation term sometimes added to their duties the office of inter- 
preter, receiving extra pay therefor. Shares could only be sold to 
servants of the Company, whose admission as partners was secured 


by vote ; the seller of a share received only its value based upon 
actual earning irrespective of probable dividends. This held out 
to meritorious young men, who had served a five or seven years' 
apprenticeship, the prospect of some day obtaining shares without 
the payment of a premium ; and if worthy, they were seldom disap- 
pointed. Each share was entitled to a vote, and a two-thirds vote 
was necessary to the carrying of a measure. Thus, by a liberal and 
intelligent policy interest was aroused and emulation sustained, and 
the affairs of the Company were no less wisely ordered than efficiently 

GREAT SUCCESS IN 1788. From such a complete organization, 
signal success was obtained. In 1788, the gross return of the trade 
was .40,000. It reached three times that amount in eleven years. 
The partnership having in 1790 expired through lapse of time, was 
renewed. Some of the former partners retired ; others were admitted, 
and the shares were increased to the number of forty-six. A new 
firm was formed by the retired partners and others, who built a 
new fort, and styled themselves the X. Y. Company. So, for a time, 
there was an additional powerful company in the field ; but in 1805, 
yielding to the dictates of interest, the two companies united. The 
new fort was named Fort William, after William MacGillivray who 
originated the measure, which first in the North- West Company and 
later in the Hudson Bay Company, made every efficient clerk in due 
time partner or shareholder. The demolition of the old fort and the 
building of the new was in consequence of the boundary line between 
the United States and Canada having been determined, the old fort 
having been found to be on United States ground. The Company, 
therefore, built the new fort forty-five miles to the northward, near 
the mouth of the Katninistiqua River, flowing into Thunder Bay, on 
the shore of Lake Superior. 

THE X. Y. COMPANY. The routine of the Company's business was 
as follows : In October of each year the agents at Montreal ordered 
goods from London, which were shipped the following spring and 
reached Canada in the summer. Those goods consisted of coarse 
woollen and cotton cloths, calicoes, blankets, silk and cotton hand- 
kerchiefs, hats, hose and shoes, thread and twine, brass kettles, cutlery 
and other hardware, arms and ammunition. Tobacco, liquors and 
provisions were obtained in Canada. No money was directly em- 
ployed in the purchase of furs from the natives : Indians scarcely 
ever knew what money was. 


SHIPPED TO LONDON. Next winter the cloth was made into such 
articles as suited the trade with the natives. The stock required 
was then put into packages of ninety pounds each, and sent from 
Montreal the following May, reaching the wilderness market the 
winter following two years from the date of ordering. Goods for 
the trading-posts beyond the Rocky Mountains and the Pacific were 
still longer in reaching their market. Goods were frequently kept 
over a year or two at the interior forts, and thus furs did not reach 
Montreal until the autumn following the winter of their purchase. 
Then they were shipped for the most part to London and sold ; but 
payment was not received until the succeeding spring and summer, 
three years at least from the shipment from England of the goods 
with which they were purchased, and sometimes four or five years. 

LONG CREDIT GIVEN. Allowing the Montreal agents twelve months' 
credit in London, they were still obliged to carry for two years the 
outlay for the goods and the expenses attending their sale. Those 
expenses were about equivalent to the first cost of the goods. So 
that when the traffic was 80,000. or 120,000 per annum, the 
amount required to be carried, especially for those times, was enor- 
mous ; and although profits were large, expenses, risk and wages were 
also large. At first the goods for New Caledonia and Astoria were 
transported in boats, on men's backs and on horseback, at immense 
cost and labor. Later they were shipped round Cape Horn and 
brought up the Columbia and Fraser Rivers. 

FOUNDERS OF THE FUR TRADE. Such were the enterprising, 
energetic and able men who first introduced trade and civilization into 
New Caledonia, : and such was the admirable and complete system 
which enabled them to control the natives and deal with them so 
successfully. Sir Alexander Mackenzie, Simon Fraser and David 
Thompson had discovered the routes. The Columbia River route, 
although lengthy and difficult, was adopted as the best connecting 
with the great emporium, Montreal. In 1813, they had extended 
their operations to Astoria, and purchased that trading-port on the 
Pacific, thus occupying the whole region west of the Rocky Moun- 
tains, including the trade which belonged to the tributaries of the 
Columbia from the Flathead country, which extended to near the 
head waters of the Missouri River. That river had been previously 
surveyed by David Thompson in defining the boundary between the 
United States and Canada, and which necessitated the removal of the 
fort at Lake Superior to Fort William, as already referred to. The 


writer of this visited one of their forts at Fort Benton, in 1883. It 
was substantially built of adobe, and had it been kept in repair, could 
have been occupied to the present time. So it thus appears that the 
North-West Company was in possession of the whole of the northern 
portion of the Continent, with the exception of that occupied by the 
Hudson Bay Company, whose headquarters were at Norway House, 
and the strip on the extreme north-west coast where the operations 
of the Russian Fur Company were carried on. 

BUSINESS IN 1798. The following statement of the North West 
Company's business for 1798, gives 106,000 beaver; 2,100 bear; 
5,500 fox ; 4,600 otter ; 17,000 musquash ; 32 marten ; 1,800 mink : 
600 lynx; 600 wolverine; 1,650 fisher; 100 racoon; 3,800 wolf; 
700 elk ; 1,950 deer ; and 500 buffalo skins. In the foregoing list 
there was only a very small quantity from New Caledonia. The 
employes of the Company were: 50 clerks, 1,120 canoe-men, and 35 
guides. Of these, 350 boatmen, 18 guides and 5 clerks were employed 
between Montreal and Fort William. 

GUIDES, EQUIPMENTS, ETC. 'As compensation for the trip, the 
guides received, besides expenses and the privilege of trading on their 
own account, $160 and their equipment; foremen and steersmen, 
$90 ; middlemen, $70, and a shirt, trousers and blanket. Those who 
wintered at the upper end of the route received double pay. All 
other employes were engaged by the year or a term of years. A 
first-class equipment consisted of fourteen pounds of tobacco, two 
blankets, two shirts, two pairs of trousers, two handkerchiefs, and 
some trinkets for trading; second class, ten pounds of tobacco and 
other articles ; third class, half the quantity of second class. To the- 
north-men, as the employes who wintered in the forest were called, 
were attached more than seven hundred native women and children, 
victualled at the Company's expense. During the height of their 
power, two thousand voyagers were employed at an average wage of 
$200 per annum. The gross annual return of the trade at that time 
was about $750,000. A writer (Umfreville) asserts, " that while the 
Hudson Bay Company, through false economy, endeavored to make 
boatmen of the Indians, and ground their servants down to 15 per 
annum, the Canada merchants paid theirs 40. Yet the former 
stigmatized the latter as pedlers, thieves and interlopers, because 
they went where trade was, instead of waiting for it to come to them." 

BRIGADES How FITTED OUT. It may be interesting at the 
present time to learn how those brigades were fitted out. The start 


was made from Lachine, on the St. Lawrence, eight miles above 
Montreal, in the month of May, when the lakes and rivers are nearly 
free from ice. At a cost of about $60 each, the requisite number of 
canoes were provided, say, thirty, in which case the squadron was 
divided into three brigades, each having its guide or pilot, whose 
business it was to point out the course, take charge of boats and 
property, attend to all repairs, and act as commander or admiral, to 
whom the voyagers stood in the relation of common sailors. 

FOREMAN AND STEERSMAN. In each boat were eight or ten men 
with their baggage, six hundred pounds of biscuit, two hundred 
pounds of pork, three bushels of pease these as ship's stores ; with 
sixty-five packages of goods as freight. The equipment of the canoe 
consisted of two oilcloths with which to cover the goods, a sail and 
sailing tackle, an axe, a towing line, a kettle for cooking purposes, a 
sponge for bailing, and some gum, bark and waptae for repairs. To 
the inexperienced observer of these frail craft, thus crowded with 
men and heaped with goods, three or four tons in each, until the 
gunwale was within six inches of the water, it seemed that destruction 
was inevitable, especially when winds and swift currents were con- 
sidered. But so experienced and expert are these Canadian boatmen, 
that loss of life and property was comparatively rare, although 
accidents were frequent. Two picked men, a foreman and a 
steersman, were placed, the one in the bow and the other in the 
stern of every canoe. Those who simply plied the paddle were called 
middlemen. A sail was hoisted whenever the wind was favorable. 

William and the Grand Portage, the boats used were only about half 
the size of those used from the east, and were managed by four, five 
or six men. They carried about thirty-five packages, twenty-three of 
which were for purposes of trade, and the remainder for luggage or 
stores. Ninety-pound packages, from long experience, were proved 
to be the most convenient weight. The usual load for one man was 
two packages, but if the way was exceedingly rugged, one sufficed, 
although an ambitious boatman would sometimes carry three. These 
were slung upon the back, and there supported by a strap placed 
across the forehead. The cargoes were thus carried to some point 
above the fall or rapid, to which the canoes were towed by a strong 
line or carried on the men's shoulders. The carrying-place or 
*' portage " passed, the boats were again loaded and the party 
proceeded. So methodical and expert did these boatmen become by 


practice, that a portage was made in an incredibly short time, from 
twelve to twenty being frequently passed in a single day. The 
length of the portage varied greatly, extending from sixty yards to six 
miles, or even twice or thrice that distance. Round a perpendicular 
fall the way was usually not far. In crossing from one stream to 
another the carrying-places were longest. 

in his journal, says : " The tract of a transport occupies an extent of 
from three to four thousand miles, through upwards of sixty large 
lakes and numerous rivers, and the means of transport on slight bark 
canoes. It must also be observed that these waters are intercepted 
by more than two hundred rapids, along which the articles of 
merchandise are chiefly carried on men's backs, and over one hundred 
and thirty carrying-places, from twenty-five paces to thirteen miles 
in length, where the canoes and cargoes proceeded by the same 
toilsome . and perilous operation." Contrast this, then the only 
available and best method of transit of goods and travel less than 
one hundred years ago, with the present railway and steamboat 
accommodation, and the changes which are found to have taken 
place are marvellous. When the distance from Athabasca Pass to 
Astoria is added, with its accompanying difficulties, it will readily 
be conceded that those early traders deserve more credit than is 
generally awarded to them. 

COLUMBIA RIVER BOATS. The birch bark canoe was not the kind 
generally used in New Caledonia. A boat specially for the trade of 
the Columbia River, was made at Okanagan. It was modelled after 
a whale-boat, and clinker built, with all the timbers flat, and so light 
that it could be easily carried. In the construction, pine gum was 
used instead of pitch. It was a bateau, thirty-two feet long, six and 
a half feet amidships, made of thin pine boards, both ends sharp, 
without keel, and propelled either with oars or paddles. Between 
points of communication, after leaving the Columbia and some of the 
northern trading-posts to Athabasca, it was not uncommon in some 
of the passes of New Caledonia to see a train of two hundred horses, 
each laden with two packages of furs, winding with the narrow trail 
round cliffs and through passes, on their way to canoe navigation. 




ALEXANDER HENRY. A fur trader of some note, Alexander Henry, 
is connected with the history of this period at Astoria (Fort George). 
He was present there when Captain William Black and officers of 
the war-sloop Racoon landed in 1813 and took possession of the 
country in the name of his Britannic Majesty. This had now 
become the place of rendezvous for a large number of fur traders, 
who, since the treacherous and most barbarous massacre of the crew 
of the Boston by Maquinna, had avoided N"ootka. Mr. Henry first 
left Montreal in 1799. For ten years or so he was engaged in the 
Red River and Saskatchewan Districts, going south of Pembina to 
Fort Abercrornby, and also visited the forts on the Missouri. From 
1811 to his death in 1814, his mission was in New Caledonia. He 
was drowned during a heavy storm whilst crossing the river." In the 
boat were Mr. Henry and Mr. Donald MacTavish, two partners of 
long standing and high reputation in the North- West Company's 
service, and six men. All hands perished by the swamping of the 
boat, with the exception of one man, John Little, who swam to shore. 
The accident took place in broad daylight, opposite the fort, but was 
not perceived or known for some hours after, until the man who was 
saved arrived at the fort and communicated the sad news. 

Ross Cox. The second ship sent from New York by the Pacific 
Fur Company, the Beaver, arrived at the mouth of the Columbia on 
May 9th, 1812. Among the passengers was Mr. Ross Cox, who, 
having obtained a clerkship in the service of the Company, had 
proceeded to Astoria to assume his duties. In a narrative which he 
published, he describes his adventures on the Pacific coast and his 
journey overland to Montreal. In this publication he refers to the 
arrival of Mr. David Thompson, on July 15th, 1811, in a canoe with 
nine men. Mr. Cox, during the summer of 1812, left for the interior 
to trade with the Spokane Indians. The following year he returned 
to Astoria, to find a complete revolution. The Pacific Fur Company 
had met with a series of misfortunes, in the loss of the Tonqmn and 


otherwise. Mr. John George MacTavish and Joseph La Rocque, with 
sixteen men of the North- West Company, had arrived and entered 
into an agreement to purchase all the eflects of the Pacific Fur 
Company at a valuation, and to give such of the Company's servants 
as desired to return, a free passage home by Cape Horn or overland. 

FLATHEAD INDIANS. Mr. Cox was one of those who joined the 
new administration. He left Astoria, October ^8th, to spend the 
winter in trading with the Flathead Indians in the interior. The 
following year he returned to headquarters, by that time named Fort 
George, where he remained two months. On August 4th he left for 
Spokane House. Between 1815 and 1817 he was in charge at Fort 
Okanagan, and in the spring of the latter year he was again at Fort 
George, whence he took his departure on April 16th, with a party 
consisting of eighty-six men who embarked in two barges and nine 

THE NEW ADMINISTRATION. The brigade ascended the Columbia 
to Canoe River, and thence crossed the mountains by the usual route 
by Lesser Slave Lake, He a la Crosse, to Cumberland House. They 
descended the Saskatchewan, passed across Lake Winnipeg, Lake of 
the Woods and Rainy Lake, and arrived at Fort William on 
August 16th. At that date Captain Miles Macdonrtell, formerly ot 
the Queen's Rangers, then connected with the expedition of Lord 
Selkirk, and others were at the fort. There was encamped a motley 
gathering of voyageurs, soldiers, Indians and half-breeds. Besides 
natives of Canada and the United States, Mr. Cox states he saw men 
from the Sandwich Islands, two negroes, and an East Indian from 
Bengal. Proceeding by Sault Ste. Marie, French River and the 
Ottawa, Mr. Cox reached Montreal, September 19th, five months and 
three days from the date of leaving the Pacific coast. 

ALEXANDER Ross. Another of the pioneers of New Caledonia was 
Mr. Alexander Ross. He was one of the twenty -eight Canadians 
who landed at the mouth of the Columbia in 1811, in the ill-fated 
Tonquin. Mr. Ross relates his adventures during the fifteen years 
he remained on the Pacific coast, and published in 1849 and 1855 a 
narrative of his expedition across the Continent. When in Upper 
Canada he was invited by Mr. Alexander Mackay, the senior partner, 
to join the Pacific Fur Company, then being organized by Mr. Astor. 
He proceeded with several Canadians to New York, and there 
embarked for the mouth of the Columbia. The Company comprised 
thirty-three persons, all but three of whom were British subjects. 


Mr. Ross was present when Astoria was established, and when David 
Thompson, of the North-West Company, arrived there a few weeks 
later. He describes the circumstances which led during the follow- 
ing summer to the breaking up of the Pacific Fur Company, and the 
transfer of the stores, merchandise and buildings to the North- West 
Company. Mr. Ross entered the service of the latter company, and 
proceeded to discharge the duties assigned him in the interior. He 
spent the following twelve years trading with the Indian tribes, 
amongst whom he had many adventures, and not a few hair-breadth 

GABRIEL FRANCHERE. Mr. Gabriel Franchere, another of the 
passengers of the Tonquin, who fortunately remained at Astoria, 
relates his experience in a narrative published by him on his return. 
His statement agrees with that of Mr. Alexander Ross as to the 
number of passengers being thirty-three, thirty of whom were British 
subjects, and of these who had formerly been in the North- West 
Company, including Alexander Mackay, who had accompanied Sir 
Alexander Mackenzie on his overland travels. On the 12th of April, 
a site was selected for a building in which the business of the com- 
pany could be carried on. The establishment broke up in two years, 
and on October 16th, 1813, the Canadian North- West Company pur- 
chased the effects and accepted the transfer of the fort. Some of 
the clerks who had been engaged by the Pacific Fur Company were 
re-engaged during the winter by the new company. The others 
returned to Canada, among whom was Gabriel Franchere who started 
overland the spring following. He left Fort George on April 4th, 1814, 
in company with some of his companions, who had doubled Cape Horn 
three years earlier, and who were deprived of employment by the 
turn of affairs on the Columbia. They embarked as passengers with 
a North- West Company brigade, consisting of ten canoes, each with 
a crew of seven men, in all ninety persons, some of whom were going 
to posts in the interior. They were all well armed to protect them- 
selves against the hostile tribes of Indians along the river. They 
ascended the Columbia to the Great Bend, which they reached on 
May 4th. Making their way across the Rocky Mountains, they 
reached the upper waters of Athabasca River, which they followed to 
Little Slave Lake. Their route from this point carried them to Fort 
Cumberland, Lake Winnipeg and Fort William, where they arrived 
on July 14th. Mr. Franchere reached his home in Montreal on the 
1st of September. 


THE WAR-SLOOP " RACOON." The war which broke out between 
the United States and Great Britain in 1812 naturally affected 
Canada, and was felt in the far west on the Pacific coast. The visit 
of the war-sloop Racoon, with twenty-six guns, to the Columbia River, 
was with the intention of capturing Fort Astoria, or of seizing any 
vessels which might be there belonging to the United States. For- 
tunately for them they were all absent, and Astoria had recently been 
transferred to the North-West Company, which was British. Trading 
vessels belonging to the United States had been warned by their 
Government to remain in neutral ports if they wished to avoid seizure. 
This had the effect of stopping, for the time being, the sea-otter fur 
trade, as Boston and other east-coast vessels were the most numerous 
and persistent in following up that trade which had already been 
well-nigh ruined on the Vancouver and Queen Charlotte Islands, by the 
reckless manner in which they supplied the natives with intoxicating 
liquor, demoralizing them and increasing their improvidence. 

CAUSE OF THE WAR OF 1812. It will afford information to many 
to state the cause of the war of 1812, referred to. This may be 
briefly explained by mentioning that, in 1793, Britain began a war 
with France, which, with a short interval in 1802-3, had been con- 
tinued against the power of Napoleon Bonaparte as general and 
emperor. When Napoleon had conquered nearly all Europe, he 
issued a decree from Berlin, to the effect that British goods should 
not be bought or sold on the continent of Europe, and that other 
nations should nob trade with Britain. ''England, who had for 
many years been mistress of the sea, retaliated and issued an " Order- 
in-Council " forbidding all neutral nations to trade with France, and 
threatening these vessels with seizure if they did not call at English 
ports." Under these restrictions, United States vessels could not 
trade with either France or Britain without being liable to seizure. 
Britain, also anxious to secure men for her navy, stopped United 
States vessels on the open seas, and searched them for runaway 
sailors and British subjects. This was looked upon by the United 
States Government as a pretext to take United States sailors to man 
British warships. 

THE YOKE OF GREAT BRITAIN. The Democratic party then in 
power, which, since the Revolution, had been hostile to Great Britain 
and friendly to France, declared war in June, 1812. General Hull 
crossed the river from Detroit to Canada and issued a proclamation 
inviting Canadians to throw off the yoke of Great Britain. The 


invitation was not accepted. The attack was made along the frontier 
at principal points from Detroit to Quebec. The struggle between 
the two countries was carried on with varying success and great loss 
of life on both sides, until the battle of Lundy's Lane was fought, 
July 25th, 1814, between three thousand Canadian and four thousand 
United States troops. The battle raged from five o'clock a.m. until 
midnight. A Canadian historian writes : "The utmost stubbornness 
and courage were shown by both armies in the fierce struggle for the 
British guns. General Riall was taken prisoner, and Scott, Brown 
and Porter, three United States generals, were wounded. At last, 
worn out in vain effort to force the British position, the United 
States troops retreated, leaving their dead to be burned by the 
victors, for the number of slain was so great that burial was impos- 
sible. The loss to the enemy was nearly nine hundred, to the British 
about the same number." 

AN OLD STATUTE IN FORCE. In a newspaper despatch from 
Washington, D.C., dated September 12th, 1893, a curious fact is 
stated as having been developed in connection with certain arrests 
made in New York the previous day, at the request of the Navy 
Department, of sailors charged with desertion from the United 
States cruiser Chicago, in England. An effort was made to secure 
the arrest of the deserters while they were in England, but it was 
ascertained that while the extradition law included deserters from 
merchant vessels, it did not avail in case of deserters from men-of- 
war, and the Navy Department was compelled to keep the men under 
surreptitious surveillance, in the hope that they would return to 
America. The inquiry at the State Department into the extradition 
laws in connection with deserters, brought out the fact that the 
feeling over one of the causes of the war of 1812, viz., the seizure of 
United States seamen for service in the British navy, had served to 
prevent, unto this day, a diplomatic arrangement between Great 
Britain and the United States, for the mutual apprehension and 
extradition of sailors from the navy of one country, who desert in the 
possessions of the other country. 

THE RIVALRY WHICH EXISTED. After the extension of the North- 
West Company's trade to the west of the Rocky Mountains, of which 
they had a monopoly, an enormous and profitable business was carried 
on. Events, however, were transpiring in the east which brought 
about a radical change. The rivalry which existed between the 
Hudson Bay Company and its energetic rivals had become so intensified 


that a skirmish took place between the parties, in 1816, at Red 
River, near the site of the present city of Winnipeg. Governor 
Sample, of the Hudson Bay Company, was killed on that occasion. 
His tragic end is described as follows : "The amiable and mild Mr. 
Semple, lying on his side (his thigh was broken) and supporting his 
head upon his hand, asked Mr. Cuthbert Grant to try and get him to 
the fort, as he was not mortally wounded. The unfortunate gentle- 
man was left in charge of a Canadian, who afterwards told how an 
Indian came up and shot the governor through the breast. No 
quarter was given ; the knife, axe, or ball put a period to the exist- 
ence of the wounded. Out of a band of twenty-eight, twenty-one 
were killed and one wounded, but escaped." 

state of affairs was brought before the British Parliament in 1819. 
Both companies were suffering from the fierce competition which 
existed they were almost ruined. One writer says : "The interests 
of the Hudson Bay Company suffered so much that between 1800 
and 1821 their dividends were for the first eight years reduced to 
four per cent.; during the next six years they could pay no dividend 
at all, and for the remaining eight years they could only pay four per 
cent." Sir George Simpson, in a report to the House of Commons, 
lamented the general demoralization of Indians and whites arising from 
the rivalry between the two companies, and said, "It was uncertain 
for a long time which of them lost most money ; neither of them 
gained money." 

READY FOR RECONCILIATION. Both companies were, therefore, 
ready for reconciliation. In 1804, Edward Ellice, then a partner in 
the North- West Company, offered Sir Richard Neave, Governor of 
the Hudson Bay Company, 103,000 for the whole concern, that 
being the capital stock of the Hudson Bay Company at that time ; 
but part of the stock being the property of minors, the bargain was 
not consummated. As early as 1801, Sir Alexander Mackenzie 
advocated a union of the companies, and pointed out the advantages 
which would result from such an arrangement. 




UNION OF THE COMPANIES, 1821. An Imperial Act was passed 
2nd July, 1821, at the instance of Mr. Ellice, by which the rights and 
privileges of the new company formed by the coalition of the 
two combined companies, were continued under the name of THE 
HUDSON BAY COMPANY. The Act also regulated the fur trade, and 
established a criminal and civil jurisdiction in certain parts of North 
America. The arrangement under which the companies were united 
in March, 1821, was exceedingly fair and acceptable to both parties. 
The North- West made over its property to the Hudson Bay Company, 
and in return the members of the former became partners, and its 
servants were taken into the employment of the consolidated company. 
The territory east and west of the Rocky Mountains, not included in 
the old charter, was granted to the new company, with the exclusive 
right to trade for twenty -one years. 

CHARTER OF H. B. C., 1670. The first charter of the Hudson 
Bay Company was granted in 1670 by King Charles II., to his trusty 
and well-beloved cousin, Prince Rupert, and others, under the name 
of " The Governor and Company of Adventurers of England trading 
in Hudson Bay." This famous and long-lived corporation was 
ostensibly established as mentioned in the charter, " for the discovery 
of a new passage into the South Sea, for the finding some trade for 
furs, minerals and other considerable commodities," and also for 
" Christianizing the Indians." The charter granted the " adventurers 
a monopoly of t^ade with plenary powers, executive and judicial, in 
and over all seas, straits, lands, etc., lying within the entrance of 
Hudson Straits, and the rivers entering them not already occupied by 
any other English subject or other Christian power or state." In 
return they were to yield and pay therefor two elks, and two black 
beavers, whenever his Majesty or his heirs should set foot in the 

THE FIRST TWENTY YEARS. The early operations of this monopoly 
were confined to the vicinity of Hudson Bay and James' Bay. As 
will be seen from the following, the profits of the fur trade were 


enormous : " Daring the first twenty years of its existence, the 
profits of the Company were so great that, notwithstanding losses 
sustained by the capture of their establishments by the French, 
amounting in value to 118,014, they were enabled to make a pay- 
ment to the proprietors, in 1684, of fifty per cent, and a further 
payment in 1689 of twenty-five per cent. In 1690, the stock was 
trebled without any call being made, besides affording a payment to 
the proprietors of five per cent, on the increased or newly created 
stock. From 1692 to 1697, the Company incurred loss and damage 
to the amount of 97,500 from the French. In 1720, their circum- 
stances were so far improved, that they again trebled their capital 
stock with only a call of ten per cent, from the proprietors, on which 
they paid dividends averaging nine per cent., for many years showing 
profits on the originally subscribed capital stock, actually paid up, of 
between sixty and seventy per cent, per annum from the year 1690 
to 1800." 

NEW GOVERNOR. As has been stated, the trade of both com- 
panies had been greatly interfered with and rendered unremunerative 
by the bitter rivalry which existed between 
the parties. With the union, however, there 
was an end to rivalry in trade, and to deeds 
of rapine and violence. A new era was 
entered upon under the governorship of Mr 
(afterwards Sir) George Simpson, who filled 
that responsible office for nearly forty years, 
until his death in 1860. Born in Ross-shire, 
Scotland, George Simpson, while still a youth, 
removed to London, where he was engaged in 
sm GEORGE SIMPSON. commercial pursuits for nearly eleven years. 

The ability, shrewdness and energy of young 

Simpson had marked him out for a wide sphere of labor, under a far 
distant sky. In 1819, when the companies were still battling furiously, 
Mr. Simpson was invited to cast in his lot with the Hudson Bay Com- 
pany. Early in 1820, therefore, he sailed from England for Montreal 
by way of New York, and in May he was on the road from the Canadian 
city to the North- West. During the winter of that year he was 
stationed at Athabasca, where he endured many hardships and 
privations, although he managed to carry on the rivalry in the fur 
trade with evident tact and energy. The Ross-shire lad of twelve 
years before had already made his mark, and assured for himself 
future fame and fortune ; and when peace was at last concluded by 


amalgamation, Simpson's talent had indicated him as the best man 
to preside over the vast operations of the united company. After 
serving a short time as Governor of the Northern Department, he 
received his appointment, and became Governor-in-Chief of Rupert's 
Land, and General Superintendent of the Hudson Bay Company's 
affairs in North America. 

position which Governor Simpson so long occupied required special 
qualifications, and these he possessed in an eminent degree. He was 
a man of consummate tact and address, and at once set about healing 
up old wounds, reconciling discordant interests, and removing old 
prejudices and jealousies from amongst the people and former 
employes. He was the first Hudson Bay governor who fulfilled, on 
behalf of the Company, that duty imposed, as a condition, by the 
charter the task of exploration and geographical discovery. Although 
as keenly alive to the material interests of his employers as the most 
unreasonable shareholder could expect, Governor Simpson never lost 
sight of the higher claims of science on his time, as well as on his 
energies. To his skilful direction and the eagerness with which he 
assisted Franklin, Richardson, Ross, Back and other explorers, the 
most valuable results were due. It was he who sent out Dease, 
Thomas Simpson, Rae, Anderson and Stewart upon the path of 
research, and at every fort or factory controlled by Governor 
Simpson, any explorer was sure of shelter, supplies, information 
and advice. Also, during his long tenure of office, the profits of the 
Company steadily increased year by year. 

FOUR DEPARTMENTS. The entire country north of the Columbia 
and tributaries, and east of the Rocky Mountains, was now under 
the control of the Hudson Bay Company. The territory west of the 
Rocky Mountains was known commercially as the western depart- 
ment. The whole trading territory was divided into four departments, 
viz., Montreal, the southern, the northern and the western. There 
were four factors for each. In the western department all were 
under the direction of one man, who was subject to the governor of 
all the departments. 

CLASSIFICATION OP OFFICERS. The following classification of officers 
and men in the active service of the Hudson Bay Company, will tend 
to show how perfect and complete was the organization: "Apart from 
the governor and board of directors in London, there was first a local 
governor, residing in Canada, having his headquarters at first at 


Prince of Wales Fort, afterward at York Factory, and later at Fort 
Garry (now Winnipeg). This governor had full jurisdiction of all the 
establishments of the Company. Second under him there were chief 
factors, who might have charge of a department or of a factory, 
supplying the lesser forts of a district; third, chief traders, usually 
in charge of some single but important post; fourth, chief clerks, 
who were sent with a crew of voyageurs on frequent expeditions, or 
placed in charge of minor posts ; fifth, apprenticed clerks, a kind of 
-forest midshipmen, raw lads, fresh from school, full of fun, spiced 
'with mischief, who write, keep store, and wait upon their seniors ; 
ixth, postmasters, usually laborers promoted for good behavior to 
the rank of gentlemen, and often placed in charge of a small station 
or outpost; seventh, interpreters, generally laborers, with a smattering 
of the native dialects in their vicinity ; eighth, voyageurs, or boatmen; 
ninth, laborers, employed in various ways, as in chopping, carrying, 
mending, trapping, fishing, rough carpentering, blacksmi thing, or 
boat-building. The laborer could not rise higher than postmaster, 
while the apprenticed clerk might become chief factor, or even 
governor. Five years of intelligent, faithful service entitled the 
apprentice to a clerkship ; and after from ten to twenty years further- 
service, he became chief trader, who was a half shareholder, and 
in a few years thereafter, chief factor or shareholder. Speaking 
generally, the chief factor directed the affairs of the Company, and 
the chief trader, acting under the chief factor, managed traffic with 
the natives." The system was the outcome of the experience of both 
^companies and was admirably executed. 

GROWTH FROM 1789 TO 1856. A glance at the equipment of the 
Hudson Bay Company shows that in 1789 they had only 315 men in 
their employ, which included seventy-five seamen, who navigated two 
ships and one sloop annually each way, which constituted the ocean 
service. In 1846, it is stated, there were 513 articled men and 
fifty -five officers, which with a network of trading-routes between 
posts extending from the Atlantic to the Pacific, gave them not only 
extraordinary influence with the natives and the trade monopoly 
of the North- West, but the actual domination of those regions, 
religious, political and social. In 1856, the affairs of 152 establish- 
ments were managed by a governor, 16 chief factors, and 29 chief 
traders, assisted by 5 surgeons, 87 clerks, 67 postmasters, 500 
voyageurs, and 1,200 permanent servants, besides sailors on sea-going 
-vessels and persons temporarily employed about three thousand 
men in all. 




present time, is the position and circumstances of the Indians from 
the natives met by Captain Cook at Nootka, or those passed by 
Alexander Mackenzie on his expedition to the Pacific coast. There 
is a vast difference also in their numbers. They were then numerous, 
nourishing, and apparently contented with their lot. " Then," says 
a writer, " in this region nature's wild magnificence was yet fresh ; 
coast, lake and river abounded with plenty ; primeval forests were 
unprofaned ; numerous villages dotted shores and valleys ; from the 
warrior's camp-fire the curling smoke never ceased to ascend, nor the 
sounds of song and dance to be heard ; then, bands of gaily-dressed 
savages roamed over every hillside humanity, unrestrained, vied with 
bird and beast in the exercise of liberty absolute. This is no history : 
alas! they have none; it is but a sun picture, and to be taken 
correctly must be taken quickly. 

"Nor need we pause to look back through the dark vista of 
unwritten history, and speculate who and what they are, nor for how 
many thousands of years they have been coming and going, counting 
the winters, the moons and the sleeps, chasing the wild game or 
fur-bearing animals, pursuing and being pursued, killing and being 
killed. All knowledge regarding them lies buried in an eternity of 
the past, as all knowledge of their successors remains folded in an 
eternity of the future. We came upon them unawares, unbidden, 
and while we bargained our worse than useless commodities, they 
melted away. The infectious air of civilization penetrated to the 
remotest corner of their solitudes. Their ignorant and credulous 
nature, unable to cope with the intellect of a superior race, absorbed 
only its vices, yielding up its own simplicity and nobleness for the 
white man's diseases and death. Savagism and civilization will not 
coalesce any more than light and darkness." 

INDIAN POPULATION, 1852 AND 1892. In a report by the Hudson 
Bay Company to the House of Commons, presented in 1857, the 


following trading-posts and the number of Indians frequenting them 
are mentioned. They were included in what is now within the 
boundaries of British Columbia. The population about that time, or 
say, in 1852, in round numbers is given at seventy-five thousand. The 
Annual Report of the Department of Indian Affairs for 189 2, published 
a return of the last Dominion census, showing the number of resident 
and nomadic Indians in British Columbia ; it also shows the religious 
denominations to which they belong. A synopsis of that return, 
giving the totals, is appended to the Hudson Bay Company's return 
for comparison, as follows : 

VANCOUVER ISLAND Fort Victoria, 5,000; Fort Rupert, 4,000;. 
Nanaimo, 3,000. FRASEB RIVER Fort Langley, 4,000. NORTH- 
WEST COAST Fort Simpson, 10,000 ; Northern tribes, 35,000. 
Lake, Fraser Lake, Alexandria, Fort George, Babines, and Connoly 
Lake, 12,000. Making an approximate total of 75,000. 

The Department of Indian Affairs gives, for 1892, the following 
list of agencies : 

1. West Coast Agency number of Indians, 2,872, in 18 tribes or 
bands, of whom 639 are Roman Catholics, and 2,233 pagans. 

2. Fraser River Agency 4,278, in 49 bands ; 547 Protestants, 
3,719 Roman Catholics, and 12 pagans. 

3. Kamloops Agency 2,327, in 44 bands; 1,175 Protestants,. 
1,084 Roman Catholics, 68 pagans. 

4. Okanagan Agency 852, in 13 bands; 46 Protestants, 73ft 
Roman Catholics, and 70 pagans. 

5. Cowichan Agency 2,044, in 34 bands. In this agency the 
majority have been baptized into the Catholic Church ; many attend 
Wesleyan and English missions, but a large number attend no church 
whatever ; in fact are pagans. 

6. Kawkewlth Agency 1,678, in 17 bands; 1,355 Protestants, 
323 pagans. 

7. William Lake Agency 1,813, in 20 bands; 48 Protestants. 
1,765 pagans. 

8. Kootenay Agency 638, in 5 bands ; all Roman Catholics. 

9. North-west Coast (mainland) Agency 4,049, in 25 bands ; 
3,004 Protestants, 1,045 pagans. 

10. Babine and Upper Skeena Agency 2,612, in 25 bands; 7^ 
Protestants, 1,499 Roman Catholics, 1,038 pagans. 


No agent at Hiletsuck, 2,274; Tahelie, 1,000; other bands not 
visited, 8,522. 

Total, 34,959. 

PROGRESS AT THE AGENCIES. The Indians in Agency 2 are re- 
ported by the visiting superintendent to possess real and, personal 
property to the value of $1,312,545 (the real property is inalienable, 
and belongs conjointly to the tribe) ; to have 3,673 acres of land 
under cultivation; to own 103 ploughs, 62 waggons and carts; to 
have raised 22,035 bushels of potatoes, 11,456 bushels of oats, 3,222 
bushels of wheat, 2,436 bushels of barley, 2,643 bushels Indian 
corn, and 150 bushels buckwheat, and cut 3,118 tons of hay; 
that they own 986 horses, 478 cows, 253 sheep, and 2,400 pigs. 
Agency 1 is credited with having $70,300 in personal property ; 
value of furs taken, $66,600; raise 1,500 bushels of potatoes. 
Agency 3 value of real and personal property, $206,487 ; acres 
under cultivation, 930; horses number 2,'202; cows, 292; pigs, 
279; young stock, 347; value of furs taken, $10,045; other 
industries, $53,200; corn, 523 bushels; wheat, 1,908; oats, 3,020; 
beans, 1,261 bushels; potatoes, 19,180; tons of hay cut, 1,231. 
Agency 4 real and personal property, $208,992 ; furs, $2,635 ; other 
industries, $20,200; corn, 963 bushels; wheat, 8,460 bushels; oats, 
4,255 bushels ; peas, 1,460 bushels; beans, 585 bushels; onions, 218 
bushels; potatoes, 13,679 bushels; hay, 727 tons. The other agen- 
cies are reported upon, and show varied results, according to the 
industrious habits or situation of the tribes. 

EDUCATIONAL GRANTS. Twenty-five Indian schools in British Col- 
umbia received educational grants from the Dominion Government 
in 1893, amounting in the aggregate to $40,434. The sums range 
from $504 for each of sixteen schools; Coqualeetza, $1,300; Yale, 
.$1,500; St. Mary's, $2,400; Kamloops, $3,250; Alert Bay and 
Kuper Island, each $4,450; Metlahkathla, $5,270; and Kootenay, 
-$6,500. Several of these schools are conducted on the industrial 
plan, under the Anglican, Presbyterian, Roman Catholic, and Meth- 
odist Churches. 

ANNUAL REPORT. The visiting superintendent in his report states 
" that the advancement and general condition of the native population 
has been highly satisfactory. . . . The discontent which had been 
noticeable for years past in some of the agencies, engendering feelings 
hostile to the Government and to the Department, and therefore to 
their- own advancement, seemed to be happily dying out, and to be 


gradually replaced by a more trusting spirit and a desire to work in 
harmony with those who labor for their good. ... A. steady im- 
provement in the sanitary condition of the natives is observable. . . . 
Much has yet to be learned and accomplished in that direction by 
many of the bands. ... In four of the agencies, epidemics (measles, 
influenza, and quinsy) appeared, and caused several deaths, mostly 
amongst young people. . . . Throughout the remaining agencies the 
general health was exceptionally good, and an increase of the Indian 
population is observed. ... In visiting the Indians throughout the 
Province, was much pleased with the signs of advancement to be 
seen, and by noticing to a great extent the increase of different indus- 
tries amongst them, and the consequent comfort and contentment 
visible. . . . For years, Indians, with their wives and families, and 
many of the young men, on account of the opportunities of earning 
money so easily at the hop-fields, and the excitement produced by 
travel and a constant change, have been in the habit of abandoning, 
for the greater portion of the summer and autumn, their reserves, 
to the utter neglect of their gardens and other home industries. . . . 
They also contract immoral habits, and diseases of mind and body, 
which prove fatal to their advancement and to the welfare of their 
offspring. Such being, mostly, the outcome of these annual peregrina- 
tions, any change in such a course of life cannot but prove a blessing 
to those concerned. ... In the Kamloops and Okanagan Agencies, 
large numbers of the natives have been employed on the Pacific rail- 
road. They continue to give every satisfaction to their employers 
and the public by their peaceful and orderly conduct, and by their 
steady and faithful work. . . . At Fort Steele, Kootenay, a skilled 
physician is subsidized by the Provincial Government, whose presence 
is prized by aborigines and white settlers." 

DESERTED VILLAGES. From the foregoing statements, it appears 
that during the past forty years the Indian population has decreased 
from 75,000 to 35,000, more than fifty per cent. The decrease on 
the sea-coast is doubtless more than proportionate in some places. 
For example, on Queen Charlotte Islands, early writers on the subject 
state that from ten to twelve large bands existed there. From the 
remains of villages of great extent, the statement need not be doubted. 
Now only three villages Massett, with a population of 401 ; Skide- 
gate, 194 ; and Clew, once the populous and powerful Nishgar nation, 
with a remnant of only 84 remain. On either side of the entrance 
of Cumshewa Inlet to Clew, their present station, are the ruins of 


two of their former villages. These relics, along with many others- 
along the coast of these islands are sad evidence of the decay and 
almost extinction of what was, less than one hundred years ago, the 
most robust and warlike of the tribes on the Pacific coast. Contact 
with what is called civilization, has led to their destruction. Without 
any restraint, their reckless improvidence and love of intoxicating 
drink fostered licentiousness and produced disease. Small-pox and 
measles carried off thousands. Many tribes have become extinct,, 
others are bordering on extermination. 



PRIMITIVE INDIAN REGULATIONS. Under the management of the 
two great fur companies in the interior of the country, the result has 
been different. Their treatment of the natives was humane and 
protective. They set up certain standards of trade, and acted up to 
them fairly. They preserved order, and were ready to assist and 
protect those who lived up to the required standard, and as ready 
and determined to punish offenders. A stolen article must be- 
restored. The tribe harboring a thief was cut off from commercial 
intercourse. Bancroft says : " Unlike the people of the United 
States, the British North Americans did not seek to revenge them- 
selves upon savage wrongdoers, after the savage fashion. When an> 
offence was committed they did not go out and shoot down the first 
Indians they met; they did not butcher innocent women and children; 
they did not scalp or offer rewards for scalps." The following extract 
from the legislative journals of Idaho Territory shows to what depths 
of cruelty and inhumanity the citizens of that state had reached : 
" Resolved, that three men be appointed to select twenty-five men to 
go Indian hunting, and all those who can fit themselves out shall 
receive a nominal sum for all scalps that they may bring in ; and all 
who cannot fit themselves out, shall be fitted out by the committee,, 
and when they bring in scalps it shall be deducted out. That for 
every buck scalp be paid $100, and for every squaw $50, and $25 
for everything in the shape of an Indian under ten years of age. 


That such scalp shall have the curl of the head, and each man shall 
make oath that the said scalp was taken by the company." 

WARS AND MASSACRES. This barbarous mode of action could not 
but rouse the most vindictive feelings amongst the natives. The 
result is that five hundred million dollars has been spent by the United 
States in Indian wars. This is the statement of Bancroft, the United 
States historian, who adds, "between the shores of the Atlantic 
and Pacific, in United States territory there is not a hundred-mile 
patch on which white men and red men have not fought ; and during 
our hundred years of national history each successive score may count 
its great Indian battle, and some scores, three to five. ... North 
of the Canadian line," he continues, " where dominate the same 
avaricious Anglo-Saxon race over the same untamed element of 
humanity, there never have been Indian wars or massacres, such as 
have been almost constant on the United States border ; not a single 
encounter such as we could call a bloody battle, and no money spent 
by the Government to keep the natives in peaceful subjection. 

BRITISH FUR COMPANIES POLICY. " The reason is plain. In the 
latter instance the natives are treated as human beings, and their 
rights in some measure respected. Being amenable to law they are 
protected by the law. Of crimes among themselves, of their wars 
and atrocities, the fur companies did not feel called upon to take 
special notice, though without direct interference they used their 
influence to prevent barbarities and maintain the peace, for the men 
could not hunt and trade while fighting. By preventing the coalition 
of neighboring nations; by fostering petty jealousies; by refusing 
arms and ammunition for purposes of war; by dividing clans; by 
setting up one chief and deposing another ; by weakening the strong 
and strengthening the weak the fur companies held the balance of 
power. The British fur companies found it to their pecuniary interest 
to be just and humane in their dealings with the natives. 

CERTAINTY OF PUNISHMENT. " If an Indian murdered a white 
man, or any person in the employ of the Company, the tribe to which 
he belonged were assured that they had nothing to fear ; that King 
George men (the Indian appellation for Englishmen) were single- 
hearted and just ; that unlike the Indians themselves, they did not 
deem it fair to punish the innocent for the deeds of the guilty, but 
the murderer must be delivered to them. This demand was enforced 
with inexorable persistency. This certainty of punishment acted 
upon the savage mind with all the power of a superstition. Felons 


trembled before the white man's justice as in the presence of the 

realm which they ruled, there was not a mountain distant enough, 
nor forest deep enough, nor icy cave dark enough, to hide the felon 
from their justice, though none but he need have aught to fear. The 
officers and servants of the Company were ordered to go to any trouble 
or expense in seeking and punishing an offender, and they were never 
to cease their efforts until the end was accomplished. Employes of 
the companies were unlike the United States border-men, inasmuch 
as they were trained to the business and held to a strict account- 
ability for every act, whether in their intercourse with white men or 
Indians. They were no more allowed to shoot or ill-treat savages 
than to murder or swindle their own comrades. The free trapper, on 
the other hand, was often a rough character who escaped from home 
in early life or from later questionable transactions. Governed solely 
by his passions, and responsible to no one ; all cases to him were 
simple questions of expediency ; when he thought of shooting an 
Indian for the beaver skin he carried, it was well enough to consider 
the chances of capture and escape." 

"DAUGHTERS OF THE LAND." In the early days it was customary 
for the servants of the companies to take to wife " the daughters of 
the land." " By this means two objects were secured : the more 
powerful native tribes were allied to the trader's interest, and the 
servants of the companies, as offspring came on, became fixed in the 
country. Further than this, gross immorality was thus in a measure 
prevented. No civilized marriage rites attended these unions. The 
father of the bride was usually solicited, and presents were made, 
after the Indian fashion ; the delighted women thus taken were, as a 
rule, affectionate and obedient, and to the honor of the fur-hunters, be 
it said, they were treated by the men with kindness and often with 
show of respect. The fur companies have generally acknowledged 
the claims of the half-breed children to protection and sustenance, and 
this class has never been forced into savagism. Attached to the 
North- West Company in 1817 were fifteen hundred half-breed women 
and children ; so many, indeed, that the Company forbade their 
servants taking new wives from the forest. Several thousand doljars 
were subscribed, about that time, by the partners and clerks of the 
North- West Company to establish a school at Rainy Lake, or Fort 
William, for the education of the children." 




FORT VANCOUVER. After the union of the companies, retaining the 
name of the Hudson Bay Company, trade rapidly grew and widened. 
It was found that the site of Fort George (formerly Astoria), on the 
Columbia, was too far west for convenience. It was, therefore, 
changed in 1824-5, to a location on the north side of the river, six 
miles above the mouth of Williamette River. The building, which 
was named Fort Vancouver, was located on the fir-skirted brow of a 
gently sloping prairie, about one mile from the river; but the distance 
proving an obstacle to transport and communication, it was moved, a 
few years afterwards, to within a quarter of a mile of the stream. 
This site was also chosen for its convenience to the traffic, which was 
carried on to and from Puget Sound. The fort continued in the 
occupation of the Hudson Bay Company until 1847, when the head- 
quarters of the Company were, removed to Victoria. 

AN EXTENSIVE CONCERN. The new fort, Vancouver, was an exten- 
sive concern. Built in the usual parallelogram shape, it measured 
750 feet in length and 500 feet in breadth, enclosed by a picket wall 
of large and closely fitted beams, over twenty feet in height, secured 
by buttresses on the inside. The interior was divided into two courts, 
with about forty buildings ; ail of wood, except the powder magazine, 
which was constructed of brick and stone. In the centre, facing the 
main entrance, stood the governor's residence, with the dining-room, 
smoking-room, and public sitting-room, or bachelors' hall, the latter 
serving also for a museum of Indian relics and other curiosities. 
Single men, clerks and others made the bachelors' hall their place of 
resort. Strangers were sent there ; it was the rendezvous for pastime 
and gossip. To these rooms artizans and servants were not admitted. 
The governor's residence was the only two-story house in the fort, and 
before it frowned two old mounted 1 8-pounders. The quarters of the 
chief factor were provided in like manner with two swivel-guns. 

RELIGIOUS WORSHIP. A prominent position was occupied by the 
Roman Catholic chapel, in which a majority of the employes 


worshipped ; while the smaller congregation of Episcopalians, etq., 
made use of the dining-room for religious gatherings. The other 
buildings consisted of dwellings for officers and men ; school, ware- 
houses, and retail stores, and artizans' shops of all descriptions. The 
interior of the dwellings exhibited, as a rule, an unpainted board 
panel, with bunks for bedsteads, and a few other simple pieces of 
furniture. A short distance from the fort, on the bank of the river, 
lay a village of about sixty neat and well-built houses laid out in 
rows so as to form streets for the married mechanics and servants. 
In the group were also the hospital, boat house and salmon house, 
and near by were barns, threshing mills, granaries and dairy 

A WELL-MANAGED FARM. The plain around the fort, and along 
the river as far as Calapooya Creek, for about nine square miles, was 
occupied by a well-managed farm, fenced into grain fields, pastures 
and gardens the latter quite renowned for their large variety and 
tine specimens of plants. Fully fifteen hundred acres were under 
cultivation. The live stock numbered about three thousand head of 
cattle, twenty-five hundred sheep, and three hundred brood mares. 
On the dairy farm were upwards of one hundred cows, and a still 
greater number supplied the dairy on Wapato Island, the produce 
being chiefly absorbed by the Russian colonies in the north. About 
six miles up the Columbia a grist mill and a saw mill were in operation. 
Lumber and flour were shipped to the Sandwich Islands. 

WALLA WALLA. Another principal trading-post was Fort Walla 
Walla. It was erected on a promontory about three-quarters of a 
mile from the junction of the Walla Walla River with the Columbia. 
The place was originally called Fort Nez Perce, and was first built to 
protect Ogden's party of fur traders, about the year 1818. The 
attack was repelled, but the necessity for a strong place became 
apparent in case of future hostilities. Timber being scarce, it wan 
brought from a great distance. "The wall was formed of sawed 
timber, twenty feet long, two feet and a half wide, and six inches 
thick, forming an enclosure two hundred feet square. Within the 
walls were stores and dwellings for servants, and in the centre another 
enclosure twelve feet in height, with port-holes and slip-doors, a fort 
within a fort. Beside the outer gate, moved by a pulley, the entrance 
was guarded by double doors, and, for further security, the natives 
were not admitted within the pickets, but carried on their trade 
through a small opening in the wall which was protected by a small 


door. The war material consisted of four pieces of ordnance of from 
one to three pounds, ten swivel guns, and a supply of muskets, pikes 
and hand-grenades. 

ACCOUNTS MADE UP AND CHECKED. Fort Colville, the last 
important post on the Columbia River, before leaving for the moun- 
tains, was situated some distance south of the present boundary line. 
At that station the accounts of the whole country were made up. The 
accountants from the minor forts either came or sent their accounts 
there, where they were checked and included in the general statement 
for the year, to be transmitted with the annual express brigade. This 
brigade left Fort Vancouver so as to reach Norway House about 
the middle of March, where the great council met every summer. 
It was in charge of a confidential officer. This service was conducted 
for several years by Chief Factor James Douglas. A. C. Anderson 
had charge of the brigade in 1842. There were several brigades 
which arrived and departed regularly from Fort Vancouver. From 
that fort were supplied the upper and interior posts as far as Fort 
James on Stuart Lake, via Thompson River. 

ANNUAL EXPEDITIONS. Every autumn trapping and trading expe- 
ditions were sent out from nearly all the principal forts, who returned 
with their catch the following spring or summer. These parties 
consisted of from five to thirty natives with their families ; or were 
composed wholly or in part of half-breeds or white men, sometimes 
under the guidance of a servant of the Company but as often alone, 
and that after having procured their outfit on credit. Two of these 
parties, much larger than from the minor posts, from fifty to 
seventy-five men each, set out from Fort Vancouver every year, one 
proceeding south ward as far as San Francisco Bay, the other eastward 
toward the Flathead country and the Colorado. 

RIVER COLUMBIA BARGES. -In conveying goods or furs up or down 
the Columbia, barges, each of five or six tons burden, were employed. 
They were manned by six French-Canadians, sometimes called Iro- 
quois, as they were generally half-breeds of the Iroquois tribe. The 
barges were steered by a paddle, and both goods and the barges were 
carried over the portages. For a small quantity of tobacco to each 
native Indian, twenty-five of them were always willing and ready to 
transfer boats and goods from one landing to the other. The tobacco 
sold by the Hudson Bay Company is said to have been obtained mostly 
from Brazil. It was twisted into a rope, one inch in diameter, coiled 
and sold by the inch. Usually the trapper required credit, and his 


ability to pay depended on his success, which risk the Company was 
obliged to take. The Indians were readily trusted, the original cost 
of the articles credited being so small in proportion to expected 
returns, that the Company could well afford to make the venture. 

CONVENTION OF 1818. At the time when the coalition of the rival 
companies was effected in 1821, a license of exclusive trade in such 
Indian territory as was not included in the original charter was 
granted them by the British Government for a term of twenty-one 
years. This license was granted under an agreement made at a 
convention signed in London, October 20, 1818, which stipulated 
that any portion of the country on the north-west coast of America, 
westward of the Rocky (or Stony) Mountains, shall be free and open 
for the term of ten years from the date of the convention to the 
subjects of the two powers . . . and is not to be construed to the 
prejudice of any claim which either of the two contracting parties 
(Great Britain and the United States) may have to any part of the 
said country ; the only object of the high contracting parties, in that 
respect, being to prevent disputes among themselves." 

SUPPLEMENTARY LICENSE IN 1838. In 1827, another convention 
was signed in London, August 6th, by which the above-mentioned 
provisions were extended indefinitely, subject to abrogation upon 
twelve months' notice by either party ; but "shall not be construed 
to impair of in any manner affect the claims which either party may 
have to any part of the country westward of the Stony or Rocky 
Mountains." This led to a trading license in 1838 being granted, 
supplementary to the former, extending this absolute power of the 
Hudson Bay Company over the whole of the region west of the 
Rocky Mountains. 

ever, be excepted that portion of the North-West claimed by Russia, 
the boundary of which between Great Britain and Russia is defined 
by the treaty concluded in 1825, as follows : 

" ARTICLE III. The line of demarcation between the possessions 
of the high contracting parties upon the coast of the Continent and 
the Islands of America to the north-west, shall be drawn in the man- 
ner following : Commencing from the southernmost point of the island 
called Prince of Wales Island, which lies in the parallel of 54 40' 
north latitude, and between the 131st and the 133rd degree of west 
longitude (meridian of Greenwich), the said line shall ascend to the 
north along the channel called Portland Channel, as far as the point of 
the continent where it strikes the 56th degree of north latitude ; from 


this last-mentioned point the line of demarcation shall follow the 
summit of the mountains situated parallel to the coast as far as the 
point of intersection of the 141st degree of west longitude (of the 
sa'iie meridian) ; and, finally from the said point of intersection, the 
said meridian line of the 14 1st degree, in its prolongation as far as 
the Frozen Ocean, shall form the limit between the Russian and 
British possessions, on the Continent of America to the north-west. 
From the Report by Colonel D. R. Cameron, R.A., C.M.G., Sep- 
tember, 1886. 

" ARTICLE IV. With regard to the boundary lines established in 
the preceding article, it is understood that the island named Prince 
of Wales belongs entirely to Russia, and that whenever the summit of 
the mountains running parallel with the coast from 56th degree of 
north latitude, to the point of intersection with the 141st meridian, 
shall be more than ten leagues from the shore, the boundary line of the 
British possessions shall run parallel with the coast line at a distance 
of not greater than ten leagues, the land between such line and the 
coast to belong to Russia." 

The interpolation of the three words, " called Portland Channel," 
has rendered the wording of the treaty obscure and the boundary 
impracticable, as described south of the 56th degree of latitude. A 
joint commission of both the " high contracting parties " has been at 
work for the past two years, arranging for the proper settlement of 
" the line of demarcation." Their labors will likely terminate in a 
convention between Great Britain and the United States. Why the 
words, "called Portland Channel," should have been introduced has 
not so far been understood, neither can they be reconciled with Van- 
couver's survey (1793-4), on which the treaty was based, nor with 
the description of the southern portion of the boundary " from the 
southernmost point of Prince of Wales Island, from south to north." 

The next reference on this question is a map of North America 
published in Paris, dated 1815, which shows the boundary between 
Great Britain and Russia was then understood to be the 56th degree 
of north latitude. A Russian atlas, published in 1849, places the 
boundary in Portland Canal, which it reaches by going east to 
Observatory Inlet and then north. 

THE " BEAVER " AND " LABOUCHERK." An extensive trade with 
Russia was subsequently carried on. In 1837, a strip along the 
Alaskan coast was leased by the Russian-American Fur Company to 
the Hudson Bay Company. This arrangement was not only to enable 
the Company to obtain furs, but also to enable them to supply the 
Russian with beef, butter, and other products and goods which were 
shipped from Fort Vancouver in large quantities. The steamer 


Beaver was tirst employed in the trade. Afterwards the Labouchere, 
a much larger steamer, was required. Five well-armed sailing vessels 
were also engaged in this service. They ranged from one hundred 
to three hundred tons each. 

TRADE WITH THE INTERIOR. The former fur trade was also con- 
tinued with the interior. It is surprising that such an enormous 
traffic could be maintained with the natives without the use of money. 
The North- West Company once established a paper currency. It 
soon depreciated, and eventually went out of use. At the Red River 
settlement the Hudson Bay Company circulated a paper currency in 
conjunction with silver, which continued to be used there until the 
Company transferred its territorial rights to the Dominion of Canada 
in 1869. It may interest the reader to know how the primitive 
trade was carried on. 

No MONEY REQUIRED. A beaver skin was usually made the 
standard, and all other values, European merchandise as well as 
other skins, were measured by it. In 1733, near Hudson Bay, a 
native, for a full-grown beaver skin, could buy half a pound of beads, 
or one pound of Brazil tobacco, or a half pound of thread. A gallon 
of brandy cost four beaver skins ; broadcloth, two beaver skins a 
yard ; blankets, six beaver skins each ; powder, one and a half 
pounds, and of shot five pounds for a beaver skin ; and so on through 
a long list, the quantity of goods for a beaver skin varying according 
to remoteness and competition. 

At the time and place last mentioned, three martens were counted 
as one beaver ; one fox, one moose, two deer, one wolf, ten pounds 
of feathers, one black bear, were each equivalent to one beaver. At 
this time beaver skins were selling in London at five or six shillings 
a pound ; marten, eight shillings each ; otter, six shillings ; bear, 
sixteen shillings ; fox, from six to ten shillings ; elk, seven shillings ; 
deer, two shillings ; wolf, fifteen shillings ; and wolverine, eight 
shillings each. 

A HUNDRED YEARS LATER we find a blanket worth ten beaver 
skins ; a gun, twenty ; a worsted belt, two ; eighteen bullets, one 
beaver skin. The gun cost twenty-two shillings, and the twenty 
beaver skins were then worth in London, 32 10s. A gill of powder, 
costing one and a halfpenny, or a scalping knife costing fourpence, 
or a dozen brass buttons, were exchanged for one beaver skin worth 
1 12s. 6d. An axe sold for three skins, a tile for two, and a pair of 
pantaloons costing four dollars, for nine skins worth seventy dollars. 


The evidence before the House of Commons in 1857, given by Dr. 
J. Rae, the Arctic explorer, who died 22nd July, 1893, says: "A 
blanket was four beavers, but if you got the value of it in musk-rats 
you would not have above a shilling or two profit, which would not 
cover the expense. Ten rats go for a beaver. Ten rats would sell in 
London, a few years ago, for about three shillings ; they are higher 
now. The tariff is formed in a peculiar way, and necessarily so. 
The sums given for furs do not coincide with the value of the furs 
traded for with them, because the musk-rat or the less valuable furs 
are paid for at a higher rate. Were the Company to pay for the 
finer furs at the same rate, the Indians would hunt up the finer furs 
and destroy them off, as has been done all along the frontier, and we 
should then require to reduce the price for the musk-rat and the 
inferior furs, and the Indians would not hunt them at all." 



SUNDRY EXPEDITIONS. Amongst the expeditions which were made 
across the Rocky Mountains in the early days, that of Sir George 
Simpson, in 1828, is worthy of special mention. As resident governor 
of the Hudson Bay Company, he made frequent visits to the territory 
of Rupert's Land and the North-West, in order to examine into the 
condition of the several posts and superintend the affairs of the Com- 
pany over which he presided. 

On this occasion his journey was from Hudson Bay to the Pacific. 
Starting from York Factory, he ascended Hayes River, passing 
through what was known as the boat route to Lake Winnipeg, at the 
northern end of which is Norway House. Skirting the north shore 
of the lake, he passed to the Saskatchewan River, which he ascended 
to Cumberland House. From this point he went northward through 
the chain of lakes and streams until he reached Churchill River, 
which he followed to Methage Portage the height of land. By 
Clearwater River he entered the Athabasca, following its waters to 
Athabasca Lake and Peace River. He ascended Peace River, 
passing through the main Rocky Mountain chain, and, with the aid 


of horses, crossed the plateau, a distance of eighty -three miles, to- 
Fort St. James on the east of Stuart Lake. 

SIB GEORGE SIMPSON was careful on all occasions to enter the forts 
he visited with his men clean and dressed in their best. He was. 
accompanied by a piper, who also acted as his servant. At Fort 
St. James the same ceremony was observed ; a gun was fired, the bugle 
sounded, and the piper led the march. There was to be a meeting 
held here of the chief officers, among whom Chief Factor James 
Douglas (afterwards Sir James, governor of British Columbia) was ' 
present, and amid a discharge of small arms, went out to meet Sir 
George. Mr. Connolly, the chief of the Pacific Department, was also 
expected. He liad not arrived. Shortly after the arrival of the 
governor, however, a* canoe appeared on the lake, and in twenty 
minutes, amid a salute of firearms, Mr. Connolly entered the fort.. 
Chief Factor Archibald MacDonald, in his journal, records the 
singular coincidence which then happened : ' Sir George Simpson left 
Hudson Bay on July 12th ; Mr. Connolly, the Pacific on the 12th of 
the same month." 

KAMLOOPS AND FORT LA.NGLEY. From Lake Stuart, Sir George? 
Simpson passed along Stuart River and Fraser River to Fort 
Alexandria. Horses were taken at this place and the country crossed 
to Kamloops, a distance of 215 miles. At Kamloops, water naviga- 
tion was resumed in a canoe with twelve men paddling. After 
passing through Lake Kamloops to its outlet, they entered the Lower 
Thompson, which they descended to its junction with the Fraser, 
From this point they reached tide water by nearly the same route as 
that which was explored by Simon Fraser twenty years earlier. They 
left Kamloops early on October 6th. 1828, and reached Fort Langley,. 
on the Fraser, about twenty -five miles from its mouth, on the 10th,, 
the distance being 264 miles. 

whole journey occupied ninety days, of which sixteen were passed at 
the trading-posts ; consequently the whole time en route was seventy- 
four days. One remarkable feature of this journey was the short 
time in which it was made. Sir George was well known for his 
rapidity of movement. Ninety miles a day was no uncommon 
occurrence with him. The canoes would start at two o'clock in the 
morning, with rests for breakfast, dinner, and supper. The men. 
paddled until a late hour, which the long days of the northern lati- 
tudes permitted, sometimes until eight or ten at night. The averages 


distance was fifty miles a day. In some instances, seventy-five, 
eighty, and even over ninety miles were covered. The journey now 
recorded was made across the Continent from the tide water of the 
Atlantic to the Pacific. Jt was carried out without any of the 
accessories of modern locomotion, in so short a time that, if the facts 
were not sustained by indisputable evidence, the record might be 
considered an exaggeration. 

A FORMER JOURNEY EAST. It would appear from a work published 
ly Alexander Ross, already mentioned, that Sir George Simpson had 
previously visited the Columbia. Mr. Ross states that in the spring 
of 1825, in company v with Sir George, he set out on his return to 
Canada. The party followed the Columbia to the Great Bend, 
known as " Boat Encampment ; " they ascended by the Athabasca 
Pass to a small lake, to which the name of the "Committee's Punch 
Bowl" was given. On reaching the main source of the Athabasca, 
they followed the course of that river to Fort Assiniboine ; here they 
changed canoes for horses, and struck south-easterly across the country 
for Edmonton. At this post they remained two weeks. During 
their stay a grand ball was given in honor of Governor Simpson. 
The party left by a brigade of boats to float down the swift Sas- 
katchewan. They halted at Fort Carlton and Cumberland House. 
At the latter place they found the Franklin advance party ; farther 
down the river they met Captain Franklin and Dr. Richardson on 
their overland Arctic expedition. The travellers readied Lake 
Winnipeg and visited Norway House, then a place of considerable 
business and activity. There the traders, on their return from the 
posts of the Company from Lake Superior on the south, the Rocky 
Mountains and New Caledonia on the west, and Mackenzie River on 
the north annually collected the fruits of their labor to be despatched 
to York Factory on Hudson Bay. 

DAVID DOUGLAS, THE BOTANIST. Another distinguished traveller 
visited I^ew Caledonia in 1825, namely, David Douglas, the cele- 
brated botanist. He spent a number of years in the country, on the 
Pacific coast, extending from Oregon northwards. In 1824. Mr. 
Douglas started from England by sea, and reached Fort Vancouver 
in April, 1825. He is mentioned by Chief Trader John McLeod, as 
a fellow-traveller up the Columbia, in 1826. In that year he crossed 
the Rocky Mountains, reached Hudson Bay, where he met Sir John 
Franklin, and returned with him to England. 


THE DOUGLAS FIR. In the autumn of 1829, Mr. Douglas again 
.sailed from England for the Pacific coast of North America. Between 
the date of his arrival and 1834, his explorations extended generally 
through the country drained by thp Columbia and the Fraser Rivers. 
The last two years of his life were devoted to scientific examinations 
in British Columbia. In his travels through the country he obtained 
the knowledge of many plant's, birds and mammals hitherto unknown. 
His discoveries include the "Douglas Fir," which will always bear 
his name. David Douglas was> born at Scone, Perthshire, Scotland, 
in 1798. He was gored to death by a wild bull, in the Sandwich 
Islands, July 12th, 1834. 

ROBERT CAMPBELL. The last of the explorers under the old regime 
was Robert Campbell, a native of Glenlyon, Scotland. He was the 
discoverer of the Pelly-Yukon, the largest river flowing into the Pacific 
from the American continent. He entered the service of the Hudson 
Bay Company in 1832. In 1834, he was transferred to the Mackenzie 
River district. In 1838, he established a trading-post at Dease Lake, 
-one of the sources of the River Liard, an important tributary of 
Mackenzie River. On this occasion he passed over to Stickeen River, 
which flows into the Pacific near Fort Wrangel, now well known in 
connection with the " Cassiar " gold fields of British Columbia. 

Soon afterwards Mr. Campbell and several of his men left Dease 
Lake and crossed to the Stickeen River, and had descended it for 
some distance, when they fell in with a large party of coast Indians, 
who took them prisoners. They succeeded in escaping, and reached 
the Indian bridge, over which they crossed, chopping it down so as to 
prevent the Indians following them. A few weeks later some Indians 
crossed Dease Lake and along with other Indians belonging to that 
country attacked the post and pillaged it, and sent Mr. Campbell and 
his people out of the country. Within a few years after, he explored 
the main branch of the Liard River to its source, Lake Francis, where 
he established a post. He then pushed across the height of land and 
discovered the Pelly River, and established a post, calling it Pelly 

In 1840, Campbell travelled up the northern branch of the Liard. 
Leaving Fort Halkett, on the latter river, in May, with seven men, 
he ascended the branch several hundred miles into the mountains to 
a, lake which he named Lake Francis ; and some distance farther to a 
second lake, in about latitude 62 N., longitude 130 W., which he 
called Lake Finlayson. From this point he passed to the western 


slope, and in two days' travel he discovered a wide stream, which he/ 
styled the River Pelly. 

In 1843, Mr. Campbell left Lake Francis, recrossed the mountain 
to Pelly River, which he descended for sorne distance. This river f 
discovered by him, proved to be identical with the Yukon, which 
flows into the Pacific far north. Three hundred miles from the 
sources of the Pelly, Fort Selkirk was established, and the river was 
explored by Campbell seven hundred miles to Fort Yukon, which was 
established in 1846 by J. Bell, of the Hudson Bay Company, 150 
miles within the Alaska boundary. From Fort Yukon, situated 
almost directly on the Arctic circle and about longitude 145 W., Mr. 
Campbell ascended the River Porcupine to its eastern sources, and 
crossed the height of land to Peel River, a small tributary of the- 
Mackenzie, not far from its outlet in the Arctic Ocean. Following 
the tributary to the main stream, he ascended Mackenzie River to 
Fort Simpson, his starting-point at the mouth of the Liard. 

In 1848, he descended the Pelly by canoe to the junction of the 
Lewis River, from whence the river takes the name of Yukon. This 
was the first time a white man had been at the source of this river. 
In the following year he returned with a party of men and established 
a post at this junction which was named Fort Selkirk. This post 
was pillaged by the Chilcats in 1851. When Selkirk was p llaged, 
Mr. Campbell went with two of his men back by the way of Francis 
Lake and down the Liard to Fort Simpson and headquarters. When 
winter set in he started on snow-shoes and walked down to Fort 
Garry, about two thousand miles, and after spending two or three 
days there, continued his journey on foot to Red Wing, Minn., about 
forty miles below St. Paul. 

Mr. CAMPBELL made a remarkable journey from the Yukon country 
to England, in 1852-3. He left White River, near the Alaskan 
boundary, on September 6th ; ascended the Pelly to one of its- 
sources ; crossed the mountains to a branch of the Liard, which he- 
followed to Fort Simpson, arriving October 21st. Winter having set 
in, he started on snow shoes to make a journey to Crow Wing, on the- 
Mississippi, extending over sixteen degrees of latitude and twenty- 
seven degrees of longitude. He had with him three men and a train* 
of dogs; these were changed at the Hudson Bay posts on his route 
as he arrived at them. His course lay by Great Slave Lake, L?ike- 
Athabasca, He a la Crosse, Carlton House, Fort Pelly, Fort Garry,, 
and Pembina. On March 13th, Mr. Campbell reached Crow Wing,, 
where he obtained horses for the journey to Chicago. 


FROM CHICAGO he started eastward and arrived a,t Montreal on 
April 1st, and such was his despatch that he was enabled to report 
himself in London, at the Hudson Bay House, on the 18th of that 
month. From his starting-point on the Pelly-Yukon, Mr. Campbell 
had made a continuous journey of 9,700 miles, nearly half of which 
was through an uninhabited wilderness, and of this distance some 
three thousand miles were passed over in the dead of winter and 
much of it walked on snow-shoes. In the annals of the Hudson Bay 
Company's service, long winter journeys, under circumstances similar 
to the one described, are not uncommon. Possibly the long tramps 
of the intrepid Dr. Rae, in 1851, and of Admiral Sir Leopold (then 
Commander McClinton) in 1853, both in connection with the 
4 * Franklin Search " expeditions, are to some extent comparable 
with them. 

He returned to the Mackenzie River, and afterwards he took 
charge of the Athabasca district, and continued there until 1863, 
when he was appointed to the charge of Swan River. At this place 
he continued until he left the service in 1872, having been in the 
employ of the company forty years. 

In 1880, he removed to Strathclair, in Manitoba, where he 
resided until his death, in the summer of 1894, at the advanced 
age of nearly ninety years. A writer in 1889 said: "Mr. Camp- 
bell is still living and enjoys excellent health on his ranch in 
Manitoba. His name comes close to the end, in a long list of 
-active and undaunted men, who from the days of Mackenzie traversed 
the mountains and unknown wilds. It would be difficult to find their 
peers in courage and endurance in any service." 

DR. G. M. DAWSON, in connection with 
the Geological Survey, in 1887 and '8S, 
visited the field of Mr. Campbell's discov- 
eries. He entered the interior from the 
Pacific coast by the River Stickeen, passed 
over to the Liard, and thence to the Pelly- 
Yukon. He returned by the River Lewis, 
to the Lynn Canal, on the coast. The 
journey proved exceedingly fatiguing and 
not a little perilous. His associates, Messrs. 
DR. DAWSON. McConnell and Ogilvie, remained in the 

district to carry on astronomical observations and field explorations 
during the following winter and summer. 




SIR JAMES DOUGLAS. Reference has already been made to Factor 
James Douglas as having met and received Governor Simpson at Fort 
St. James in 1828. The important position which he (afterward Sir 
James Douglas) has occupied in the history of 
British Columbia, entitles him to a special 
notice. According to the best available 
authority, he was born at Demarara on the 
14th August, 1803. His father was a scion 
of the noble Scotch family of Douglas, Earl 
of Angus, and had emigrated from Scotland 
to British Guiana a few years before the birth 
of James, who was left an orphan at an early 
age. The family soon after the mother's death 
returned to Lanark, Scotland, where the sons 
were educated. 

When little more than twelve years of age, 
young Douglas accompanied an elder brother across the Atlantic, to 
push their fortunes in Canada. The rivalry between the Hudson 
Bay and the North-West Companies was at that time extremely keen. 
After a short interval in Montreal, engaged in office work, the lad 
was entered as an apprentice clerk in the service of the North-West 
Company. He formed one of a brigade to Fort William, on Lake 
Superior, to be placed under Chief Factor John McLoughlin. 

WAS AN APT STUDENT. In the discharge of the duties there required 
of him, he displayed great aptitude in learning, and with the short 
practice he formerly had in Montreal, became well acquainted with 
the French language. He v possessed a bold and resolute spirit, and 
remarkable physical strength and powers of endurance. Those quali- 
tie"s were developed and strengthened, as he grew to manhood, by 
the character of the arduous and varied services in which he was 
engaged. He also soon began to display those rare intellectual quali- 
ties of prudence, determination and executive capacity, which were 
appreciated by his employer, and early marked him a born leader of 
men. His business faculties and the tact he exhibited in his inter- 
course with the Indians, secured his rapid advancement to posts of 
increased responsibility. 

After the coalition of the companies, two young men, brothers of 
Douglas, in the same service, returned to Scotland, and wished James 
to return with them. The chief factor, however, who remained in. 
the service, and was appointed to the command of the Columbia 


Department, having taken a fancy to the young man, persuaded him 
to remain. McLoughlin wrote to the Company's directors in London 
for permission that Douglas should accompany him there, which 
request was granted. 

EXPERIENCE IN NEW CALEDONIA. Before crossing the Rocky 
Mountains, Douglas 1 remained in the Athabasca district until 1824, 
when he went to Fort St. James, on Stuart Lake, in company with 
James Connolly. McLoughlin proceeded to Fort Vancouver. His 
object in leaving Douglas in the north was to give him an opportunity 
of becoming familiar, in the most minute detail, with the working of 
the machinery of the united companies. To this end it was necessary 
that he should have experience, and first of all in New Caledonia. 
From the warm friendship which existed between Mr. McLoughlin 
and Douglas, the latter had all the assistance and advice which it was 
possible to give him. He was already familiar with the ordinary 
branches of the business, and as an accountant had no superior in 
the service. 

HE BUILDS FORT CONNOLLY. Without delay, on his arrival at 
Fort St. James, he set himself to study the condition of the country, 
its geography, hydrography and topography, and the languages and 
characteristics of the various tribes of natives with whom he would 
have business dealings. During the four years which he remained in 
the interior of New Caledonia, he founded several forts. One of these 
was built in 18*26, on Bear Lake, at the head, of one of the branches 
of Skeena River, and named Fort Connolly, in honor of James Con- 
nolly, whose daughter, Nellie Connolly, a beautiful maiden of "sweet 
sixteen," young Douglas, along with his other duties, found time to 
" woo and win," and who in due time became his wife, and latterly 
Lady Douglas. 

A TRAGEDY AT FORT ST. JAMES. Whilst at Fort St. James, a 
tragedy was enacted in which Douglas acted a leading part. It is 
described in a book published in 1849, by John MacLeari, who had 
been in the service of the Hudson Bay Company for twenty-five years, 
He states that the interpreter, named Waccan, informed him that 
w^hen Fort St. James was under the command of Douglas, a native 
from Fraser Lake had murdered one of the Company's servants. The 
murderer concealed himself for some time, but 110 notice having been 
taken of the affair, he thought there was nothing to fear, and returned 
to his village. At length he was led by his evil genius to visit the 
Indian village at Stuart Lake. Douglas heard of his being there, 


-and though he had but a weak garrison, determined that the blood of 
the white man should not be unavenged. The opportunity was 
favorable, as the Indians of the village were out on a hunting excur- 
sion, and the murderer was nearly alone. He proceeded to the camp, 
accompanied by two of his men, and " slew " the murderer. 

INDIAN STRATAGEM. On their return in the evening the Indians 
learned what had happened. A council was held, and it was decided 
that they should retaliate. Aware, however, that Douglas was on 
his guard, and that the gates were shut and could not be forced, they 
resolved to employ Indian stratagem. The old chief accordingly 
proceeded to the fort alone, and, knocking at the gate, desired to be 
admitted, which was permitted. He immediately stated the object of 
liis visit, saying a deed had been done in their village which subjected 
liimself and his people to a heavy responsibility to the relatives of the 
dead ; that he feared the consequences, and hoped that a present 
would be made to satisfy them. 

DOUGLAS OUTWITTED. Continuing to converse thus calmly, 
Douglas was led to believe that the matter could easily be arranged. 
Another knock was now heard at the gate. " It is my brother," said 
the chief, "you may open the gate; he told me he intended to come 
-and hear what you had to say on this business." The gate was 
opened, and in rushed the whole Nekasly tribe ; the chief's brother 
at their head. The men of the fort were overpowered ere they had 
time to stand on their defence. Douglas, however, seized a wall-piece 
that was mounted in the hall, and was about to discharge it on the 
crowd that was pouring in upon him, when the chief seized him by 
the arms and held him fast. 

THE INTERPRETER'S WIFE. For an instant his life was in the 
utmost peril, surrounded by thirty or forty Indians ; their knives 
drawn, and brandishing them over his head with frantic gestures, and 
calling out to the chief : "Shall we strike 1 shall we strike ?" The 
chief hesitated ; and at this critical moment the interpreter's wife 
stepped forward and, by her presence of mind, saved him and the 

Observing one of the inferior chiefs, who had always professed the 
greatest friendship for the whites, standing in the crowd, she 
addressed herself to him, exclaiming : " What, you a friend of the 
whites, and not say a word in their behalf at such a time as this ! 
Speak ! you know the murderer deserved to die ; according to your 
own laws the deed was just; it is blood for blood. The white 


men are not dogs, they love their kindred as well as you do; 
why should they not avenge their murdered." The moment the 
heroine's voice was heard the tumult subsided ; her boldness struck 
the savages with awe. The chief she addressed, acting on her 
suggestion, interfered, and being seconded by the old chief, who had 
no serious intention of injuring the whites, was satisfied with 
showing them they were fairly in his power. Mr. Douglas and his 
men were set at liberty, and an amicable conference having taken 
place, the Indians departed much elated with the issue of their 

HAIRBREADTH ESCAPES. The duties attached to the service in 
which Douglas was engaged in the northern interior were severe and 
often perilous. Once he was made captive by one of the tribes and 
detained for many weeks. After enduring severe hardships, he 
contrived at length to effect his escape, and succeeded in reaching one 
of the Company's forts in an exhausted condition. His reappearance 
was hailed with mingled delight and astonishment, for he had been 
.given up for dead. His many hairbreadth escapes from death, aided 
by his coolness and courage, were often marvellous. 

McLouGHLix AND DOUGLAS. In 1828vhe was transferred to Fort 
Vancouver, that he might there render more immediate assistance to 
his friend Mr. McLoughlin, which the increasing requirements of the 
service demanded. In his new position he rose rapidly, and soon 
stood second only to his chief in all New Caledonia. At this place he 
had great advantages and abundance of time to become proficient in 
all the minutest details of the service not in theory alone, but in 
practice. He revised and greatly improved the system of accounts, 
which required all the trading-posts on the Pacific to make annual 
returns to Fort Vancouver. 

MADE CHIEF TRADER, ETC. After being only a short time at Fort 
Vancouver, lie was made chief trader (in 1830), and in 1833, was 
appointed chief factor ; was, in fact, the chief agent for the whole 
region west of the Rocky Mountains. The greater portion of his 
time was now employed in selecting sites and superintending the 
-establishment of trading establishments. Annual visits of inspection 
were made by him to the several stations in the interior and on the 
seaboard. It is recorded that " he was fast becoming famous for his 
geographical and practical knowledge." In proceedings connected 
with the Treaty of Washington, he was pronounced "one of the most 


enterprising and inquisitive of men, famous for his intimate acquaint- 
ance with every crevice on the coast." 

ALASKA TREATY. With Factors McLoughlin and Ogden at Fort 
Vancouver, and Douglas, as counsellor, along with them, the business 
of the Company was in a flourishing condition. In 1839, preparations 
were made to proceed to Alaska to arrange a difficulty there with the 
Russian Government. The Anglo-Russian Treaty of 1825, already 
mentioned, provided for the free navigation of streams crossing 
Russian territory in their course from the British possessions to the 
ocean. Taking advantage of that proviso, the Hudson Bay Company 
had pushed forward their trading-posts to the Stickeen River. In 
1833, they fitted out the brig Dryad for the purpose of establishing a 
permanent station on that river. 

RUSSIAN FUR COMPANY. Information of these proceedings having 
been conveyed to Governor Wrangel, at Sitka, he notified the man- 
agers of the Russian Fur Company, at St. Petersburg, asking them 
to induce the Imperial Government to rescind the clause in the treaty 
under which the British Company encroached on Russian territory. 
As a further motive for this request, the governor reported that the 
British Company had violated the agreement to abstain from selling 
firearms and spirituous 'liquor to the natives. The Emperor granted 
the petition, and the British and United States Governments were 
notified of the fact. Both protested through their ministers at St. 
Petersburg, but in vain ; the reply of the Russian foreign office 
being that the objectionable clause would terminate in the following 

RUSSIAN MANOEUVRES. Without waiting to be informed of the 
success or failure of his application, Baron Wrangel despatched two 
armed vessels to the mouth of the Stickeen River. There, on a small 
peninsula, a fortified station was established. The fort was built on 
the site of an Indian village, near the town of Wrangel. These war- 
like preparations were unknown to the officials of the Hudson Bay 
Company, and when the Dryad approached the mouth of the Stickeen, 
the men on deck were surprised by a puff of white smoke and a loud 
report from the densely wooded shore, followed by several shots from a 
vessels in the offing. The brig was at once put about, but anchored 
just out of range ; whereupon a boat was sent from shore, carrying 
an officer who, in the name of the Governor of the Russian colonies 
and the Emperor of Russia, protested against the entrance of a 
British vessel into a river belonging to Russian territory. All 


appeals on the part of Hudson Bay Company's agents were ineffec- 
tual. They were informed tint if they desired to save themselves, 
their property and their vessel, they must weigh anchor at once. 
After a brief delay, the Dryad sailed for Fort Vancouver. 

CONVENTION IN 1839. The authorities of the Hudson Bay Company 
lost no time in sending reports of this affair to London, accompanied 
with a statement that the loss incurred through this interference with 
their project amounted to 20,000 sterling. The British Govern- 
ment immediately demanded satisfaction from Russia, but the matter 
was not finally settled until 1839, when a convention met in London 
to settle the points of dispute between the two corporations, and in a 
few weeks solved difficulties which experienced diplomatists had 
failed to unravel in years. The claim of the Hudson Bay Company was 
waived on the condition that the Russian CoYnpany grant a lease to 
the former of all their continental territory lying between Cape 
Spencer and latitude 54 40'. The annual rental was fixed at 
two thousand land-otter skins, and at the same time the Hudson Bay 
Company agreed to supply the Russian colony with a large quantity 
of provisions at moderate rates. The agreement gave satisfaction to 
both parties. At the end of the term first agreed on, the lease was 
renewed for a period of ten years, and twice afterwards for periods 
of four years. 

AN ARMED FLEET. Extensive farming operations and stock-raising 
were being carried on in Williamette valley by this time; settlements 
were also commenced at The Dalles, Walla Walla, Clearwater and 
Spokane. ' Trade and the coast service had so increased that five 
vessels were required for the traffic. They were : The bark Columbia, 
310 tons, 6 guns and 24 men ; the bark Vancouver, 324 tons, 6 
guns, 24 men; ship Nerid, 283 tons, 10 guns, 26 men; schooner 
Cadboro, 71 tons, 4 guns, 12 men; and steamer Beaver, 109 tons, 5 
guns, 26 men. The Beaver was the first steamer on the Pacific 
coast ; built at Blackwall, London, in 1835 ; reached the Columbia 
River, round Cape Horn, as a sailing vessel, in 1836 ; had machinery 
fitted in, and was in Puget Sound in 1837. This fleet being armed 
and equipped for defence, constituted the Hudson Bay Company's 

SETTLERS ARRIVING. New Caledonia and the Oregon region were 
as yet undivided, but the time had arrived when settlers from the 
east began to come in. The boundary question between the north 
and the south was agitated and discussed. The advent of settlers 


was a cause of uneasiness to the Hudson Bay Company. Although 
settlement was inimical to their interests as fur traders, they were 
powerless to prevent it. The chief factor, McLoughlin, being a man 
of humane disposition, befriended the immigrants in many instances, 
and was blamed for so doing by the directors of the Company in 
London. The incoming settlers to Oregon were of a class totally 
different from any McLoughlin had hitherto seen. Many of them 
were conscientious and honest. Most of them were pecuniarily irre- 
sponsible ; too many were unreliable in their word, and some few 
were downright dishonest. 

BANCROFT MORALIZES. Moralizing on the character of the two 
great leaders, McLoughlin and Douglas, Bancroft says : " Douglas 
would satisfy the requirements of a merciless corporation better than 
McLoughlin ; for McLobghlin's duty was always on the side of 
-charity, while the charity of Douglas was made subservient to duty. 
In guile, McLoughlin was an infant ; in everything covert or cun- 
ning he was unsophisticated. He had spent his life, or at least the 
greater part of it, among responsible men whose words were single, 
whose assurances signified something. They were business associates, 
business brethren, strict in their dealings, slower to promise than 
to perform. Thus the cold, keen world and the darkest side of 
humanity had remained hidden from him. He had not found it in 
the forest or the camp. In the singleness and noble purity of his 
soul, he could not but believe that most men were honest ; he could 
not believe that men are as bad as they are, and lie never regretted 
.having befriended the unfortunate. To the end he was gentle and 
tolerant, though his sensitiveness to ingratitude and wrong was often 
manifest. . . . Neither Douglas nor McLoughlin ever did a base 
or ignoble act ; and side by side, even as in life they were so often 
found, their names shall forever stand unsullied in the annals of the 
.great North- West." 

FARMERS BROUGHT OUT. For the encouragement and develop- 
ment of trade as well as to hold land convenient to the trading- 
posts, and to furnish supplies for the Russian Fur Company, the 
settlements formerly mentioned were opened. In 1839, English and 
Scotch farmers were brought from Canada, across the mountains, and 
placed in most favorable places. French-Canadians and half-breeds 
retiring from the service of the Company, were encouraged to settle 
on those lands, which could be had free of cost. In the vicinity of 
Fort Vancouver, the areas of agriculture were soon greatly enlarged, 


and grist mills erected for the several grades of flour required for the- 
Russian-American trade. More sheep and cattle were being driven 
north from California, and swine from the Sandwich Islands were 
imported. They increased rapidly. The plains near Fort Nisqually 
were turned into sheep and cattle ranges, and the Puget Sound Agri- 
cultural Company was inaugurated. Hence, it was not long before 
wheat, flour, butter, pork and other articles in large quantities were 
ready for shipment to the Russian ports on the Alaskan coast and 
also on the Asiatic coast. Four barks, of eight hundred tons each, 
were built in London for the exportation of the Hudson Bay 
Company's produce. 

THE BOUNDARY QUESTION. In the midst of all this stir and exten- 
sion of trade and traffic, the Company did not lose sight of the 
approach of the partition of the territory which was inevitably drawing; 
nigh. The. joint occupancy must cease ; and to be safe, it was decided 
that another fort should be erected, to be used instead of Fort Van- 
couver, as headquarters of the Company if necessary. If the decision. 
of the Governments should be that the international boundary would 
be the extension of that on the east of the Rocky Mountains, on the 
49ih parallel of latitude, it would then be necessary to have the 
location of the new fort north of that line, and also convenient to the 
sea-going trade, as well as to accommodate the trade of the interior.. 
The Columbia River could no longer be used as the main artery of 

DOUGLAS PROCEEDS TO SITKA. The island of Vancouver was chosen 
as the most suitable place, after careful examination by Mr. Douglas 
and others. Preparations were made to have the work proceeded with 
as soon as convenient. In the meantime, Mr. Douglas found it 
requisite to proceed north to Sitka in connection with the lease of a 
p rtion of Alaska from the Russians, to take possession of the trading 
post at Stickeen River, and the building of another post on the Taku 
River, all in Russian territory. A party was organized, leaving Fort 
Vancouver, to proceed overland to Puget Sound, where they were to- 
take the steamer Beaver. Douglas, who had been made a chief factor 
in 1833, was the leader of the expedition. 

A NOBLK ACT. An incident occurred, as the party were fording 
the Nisqually River, which was then swollen (April, 1840). It is 
narrated by Bancroft, and illustrates the character of Douglas. He 
introduces the occurrence by the remark: "There is something sub- 


lime in that quality inherent in noble natures which cannot overlook 
a duty, even though its performance leads to death." It appears that 
Lassertes, the man foremost in crossing the river, was by some mishap 
swept from his horse, and carried some distance down the river. Just 
before reaching a drift of logs and debris, under and through which 
the furious water was surging, threatening instant destruction to any 
on whom it might once lay its grasp, he caught the end of a fallen 
tree and held to it as his only hope of life. Even to those accustomed 
to daily dangers, and to prompt, unflinching action whenever a 
comrade needed help, the position of Lassertes was so perilous, the 
destruction of whomsoever should attempt his rescue so probable, that 
the bravest of these brave men drew back appalled. The air and water 
were so icy cold that the limbs would be quickly benumbed, and prob- 
ably render effort powerless. " Fear fell upon the company," says 
Douglas in his journal " Lassertes was every moment growing weaker- 
He was apparently a doomed man. The contagion weighed upon my 
own mind, and I confess with shame that I felt not that cheerful 
alacrity in rushing to the rescue as at other times." Douglas saw that 
if he did not make the attempt no one would. It were easy enough 
to hold back ; to dally ; to seek for means less venturesome than such 
extreme personal peril; that man's life was not worth half as much as 
his own ; no blame could by any possibility ever be attached to him 
let him go. 

DOUGLAS RESCUES LASSERTES. Douglas could not do it. His 
nature was not formed that way. " Even then," he writes in his 
journal, "I could not allow a fellow-creature to perish without an 
effort to save him, while the inactivity of all present was an additional 
incentive to redouble my own exertions. With a sensation of dread, 
and almost hopeless of success, I pushed my horse with spur and whip 
nearly across the river, sprung into the water, and rushed towards 
the spot where the nearly exhausted sufferer was clinging, with his 
head above water, to a tree that had fallen into the river. Upon 
its trunk I dragged myself out on all fours, and great was our mutual 
joy when I seized him firmly by the collar, and with the aid of a 
canoe that arrived soon after, landed him safely on the bank, where a 
blazing tire soon restored, warmth to both. And to my latest breath 
may I cherish the remembrance of Lassertes' providential rescue from 
a watery grave, as I could never otherwise have enjoyed tranquillity 
of mind " 


RODERICK FINLAYSON. Attached to this party another historic 
name should lie mentioned that of Roderick Finlayson. In his 
autobiography he states that he was born in Ross-shire, Scotland, in 
1818. His father held a sheep and stock 
farm. He left home at the age of nineteen, 
sailed from Glasgow in July, 1837, reaching 
New York after a passage of forty days. 
Through the influence of a relative he re- 
ceived an appointment as apprentice-clerk 
in the Hudson Bay Company. After a 
short time at the desk in the head office at 
Lachine, he was detailed to a station near 
Ottawa, where he remained during the 
winter of 1837-38. 


YOUNG JMNLAYSON was next ordered to 

join a brigade in the spring of 1838, which consisted of four large 
canoes, with forty officers and men who were to proceed direct to the 
Columbia district, to take possession of a portion of the Russian 
territory which had been leased from the Russian Fur Company. 
He describes the route travelled via Lake of the Woods, Lake Winni- 
peg and Norway House. From Norway House they followed the 
Nelson River to York Factory. At the depot there they remained 
a fortnight, replenishing the stock and preparing for the western 
portion of the journey. 

ARRIVED AT VANCOUVER. The party left York Factory under the 
command of Dr. John McLoughlin, then chief factor in charge of the 
Columbia district calling at Norway House, Fort Carlton, tfort 
Pitt and Edmonton, on the Saskatchewan. At Fort Edmonton they 
left the boats and took horses across to Fort Assiniboine on the 
Athabasca River, where they again took boats and worked mostly by 
poling a steep ascent up the river to Jasper House ; then again took 
horses to Boat Encampment, at the great bend of the Columbia River. 
Boats were here ready, and calling at the various stations along the 
Columbia River, the party arrived at Fort Vancouver in November. 

IN CHARGE OF MILLS. Shortly after his arrival Finlayson was 
placed in charge of the grist and saw mill about five miles up the 
river from the fort, where he had a gang of twenty men to look after. 
From the saw mill were shipped lumber and spars to the Sandwich 
Islands. At this work he remained until the spring of 1840, when 
he was ordered to join the party under Chief Factor Douglas, who on 


going north at that time rescued the man Lassertes from drowning, 
At the head of Puget Sound they found the steamer Beaver, Captain- 
McNeill, in waiting. On the way north they called at Fort Langley 
on Fraser River. That fort had recently been destroyed by fire r 
which was unfortunate, as a supply of salted provisions were expected 
to have been obtained there. Fort McLoughlin, at Milbank Sound,. 
was visited, and also Fort Simpson, at each of which places furs, 
potatoes, cord wood, etc., were secured. 

proceeded to the mouth of Stickeen River, where according to previous 
arrangement they received possession of the fort there, which was 
evacuated by the Russians on their arrival, and the British flag 
hoisted. After matters were all satisfactorily arranged, Factor Douglas 
left eighteen men and an officer in charge, and proceeded along with 
the rest of the party to Sitka. There they were most cordially 
received by the Russian governor, Etholin. A salute of nine guns 
was fired by the Russian vessels in the harbor, which, says Finlayson r 
"the Beaver returned in grand style." 

DOUGLAS AT SITKA. Factor Douglas remained at Sitka ten days r 
during which time he settled various matters relative to the future 
trade of the coast with the Russians and with the native tribes. 
When leaving for the gulf and River Taku, a parting salute was given 
and returned. A new fort was to be erected and a site selected on 
the Taku. After considerable searching a place was found about fifty 
miles up the river and a fort built, which was named Fort Durham 
in honor of Lord Durham, then Governor-General of Canada. 

FORT TAKU BUILT. As soon as the new fort was put in a proper 
state of defence, with bastions, etc., a party consisting of eighteen 
men and two officers was placed in charge. Roderick Finlayson was 
second in command. Before leaving Taku River, the Beaver, with 
Factor Douglas, made several cruises to the neighboring inlets to 
examine and understand more thoroughly the position and temper of 
the natives, who were inclined to be troublesome. The Beaver then 
returned to Nisqually, calling at the various landing-places, and 
trading from the deck of the vessel, as was customary where no posts 
were established 

NARROW ESCAPE OF FINLAYSON. Roderick Finlayson describes the 
location of the new fort as being "as dismal a place as could possibly 
be imagined. The journal kept showed rain and snow for nine 
months out of the twelve. Trade was opened with the natives, but 


being fierce and treacherous, only one at a time was allowed to 
enter the gate of the fort. An incident occurred not long after 
the establishment of Fort Durham which might have terminated 
fatally with Finlayson. He relates that a few years previously, a 
vessel from Boston came to trade in the neighborhood, and had a 
quarrel with the natives, in which a large number of them were killed. 
According to the Indian law of revenge, the natives agreed among 
themselves to capture the fort and murder all the inmates. With 
this view a party of warriors one day arrived, and one of them partly 
forced his way through the gate, against the gate-keeper, who was a 
Kanaka, or Sandwich Islander. Finlayson came to assist, and 
succeeded in driving the Indian out, but in doing so was struck a 
heavy blow with a bludgeon by another Indian. In the heat of the 
affray Finlayson went outside the gate, arid was immediately seized 
by a party of the savages who were hiding close by, and forced a 
distance from the gate. He called to his men inside to open blank 
cartridge to frighten them. In the meantime Finlayson managed to 
get his back against a tree, and drawing his pistols, kept them at bay 
until he gained the fort. For several days the fort was besieged, but 
the natives finding trade suspended came to a parley, when it was 
explained that the man whom they had injured was not a Boston man, 
and that they should pay an indemnity for the outrage. A large 
bundle of furs was brought and accepted. Peace was declared and 
trade resumed. Dr. Kennedy was in charge of the fort at the time 
when the contretemps took place^ 

'The Beaver returned to Puget Sound, trading with the natives 
at the various villages en route. Factor Douglas was then of 
opinion that the business along the coast could be more profitably 
carried on by itinerant visits than by continuing the established forts. 
This view was apparently concurred in by Governor Simpson, who 
arrived at Fort Vancouver in August, 1841, on his memorable 
journey around the world, overland. The ( Governor-in-Chief of the 
Hudson Bay Company, in the work which describes the journey, gives 
a minute description of the tour, which partook of a visit of inspec- 
tion of the trading-posts of the Company stationed along his route. 
Governor Simpson and party remained a week at Fort Vancouver 
before proceeding north to Sitka. Commodore Wilkes was then at 
the Fort in command of the United States exploring squadron. 





Reference may be made here to Sir George Simpson's visit to 
British Columbia, in connection with his memorable journey round 
the world, in 1841-42. He left England on March 3rd, 1841, and, 
landing at Boston, made his way to Montreal. His outfit was com- 
pleted at Lachine, the headquarters of the Hudson Bay Company in 
Canada. The expedition started from that village on 4th May; 
on the 16th of the month the party arrived at Sault Ste. Marie. 
After some detention by ice on Lake Superior, Sir George reached 
Thunder Bay, and ascended by the Kaministiqua to the height of land. 
He traversed the chain of lakes and rivers to the Lake of the Woods, 
and arrived at Fort Alexander, near the mouth of River Winnipeg, 
on June 8th. On the third day following, Sir George Simpson was 
at Fort Garry, having accomplished the journey of two thousand 
miles in thirty-eight days. 

There was an ordinary trail from Fort Garry to Fort Edmonton. 
It passed from point to point across the prairie, and was used by the 
Red River carts for the transportation of merchandise. It was not 
always in good condition, but was easily followed along the banks of 
the Assiniboine to Fort Ellice, thence to Fort Carlton, Fort Pitt and 
Edmonton. On July 23rd, Sir George left Edmonton, taking a 
south-western course. He crossed Battle River, Red Deer River 
and Bow River. Ascending by a tributary of the latter, he gained 
the height of land at the Kananaskis Pass, in about 50 30' latitude. 
Descending a tributary of the Kootenay to the main river of that 
name, the party directed its course to Kulispelm Lake, the source of 
the Pend d'Oreille River, which was followed to the Columbia. 

Reaching Fort Colville, Sir George writes : l Here terminated a 
long and laborious journey of nearly two thousand miles on horse- 
back, across plains, mountains, rivers and forests. For six weeks 
and five days we had been constantly riding, or at least as constantly 
as the strength of our horses would allow, from eariy dawn to sunset, 
and we had, on an average, been in the saddle about seven hours and 


a half a day. From Red River to Edmonton, one day's work with 
another amounted to about fifty miles, but from Edmonton to Colville 
we, more generally than otherwise, fell short of forty." 

From Fort Colville the Columbia was descended by canoe. The 
travellers passed the Company's post at Okanagan and reached Fort 

INTERESTING VISITS. Whilst at Fort Vancouver, Governor Simpson 
and party visited the Company's dairy, which was located on an 
island or delta, fifteen miles long by seven miles wide, formed by a 
branch of the Williamette River. At the dairy they found about 
A hundred milch cows, which were said to yield, on an average, about 
sixty pounds of butter each in a year. There were also two or 
three hundred cattle left, merely with a view to breeding, to roam 
about at will. They next cr.ossed the River Columbia and ascended 
the Cowlitz River in a large bateau, with a crew of ten men. " The 
ere**," Governor Simpson remarks, " was as curious a muster of races 
-and languages as perhaps had ever congregated within the same com- 
pass in any part of the world. There were Iroquois, who spoke in 
their own tongue ; a Cree half-breed, of French origin, who appeared 
to have borrowed his dialect from both his parents; a north Briton, 
who only understood the Gaelic of his native hills ; Canadians who, 
of course, knew French ; and Sandwich Islanders, who jabbered a 
medley of Chinook, English, and their own vernacular jargon. Add 
to all this that the passengers were natives of England, Scotland, 
Russia, Canada, and the Hudson Bay Company's territories, and you 
have the prettiest congress of nations, the nicest confusion of tongues 
that has ever taken place since the days of the Tower of Babel." He 
further remarks that when he " descended the Cowlitz in 1828, there 
was a large population along its banks ; but since then the intermittent 
fever, which commenced its ravages in the following year, had left 
but few to mourn for those that fell." 

PUGET SOUND FARMS. At the landing-place, about sixty miles 
from Puget Sound, Mr. Douglas had procured horses from the Cowlitz 
farm, ten miles distant, ready to convey the party to Puget Sound. 
"\Yhen this tract had been explored, a few years previously, the 
Company established two farms upon it, which were subsequently 
transferred to the Puget Sound Agricultural Association, formed 
under the Company's auspices, with a view to producing wheat, wool, 
hides and tallow for exportation. On the Cowlitz farm there were 
already about a thousand acres of land under the plough, besides a 


large dairy, an extensive park for horses, etc. The crops that season 
amounted to 8,000 or 9,000 bushels of wheat, 4,000 of oats, with due 
proportions of barley, potatoes, etc. The other farm was on the- 
shores of Puget Sound ; and as its soil was found better fitted for 
pasturage than tillage, it had been appropriated almost exclusively 
to the flocks and herds, so that then with only 200 acres of cultivated 
land, it possessed 6,000 sheep, 1,200 cattle, besides horses, pigs, etc. 

a week at Fort Vancouver, on the 6th of September, the party, 
including Factor Douglas, embarked at Nisqually on board the 
Beaver for Sitka. They took wood and water near Point Douglas, 
where there was a large camp of about a thousand savages, inhabi- 
tants of Vancouver Island, who, Governor Simpson states, periodically 
crossed the gulf to Fraser River for the purpose of fishing. A great 
number of canoes assisted in bringing over the wood and water from 
the shore. Some of the canoes were paddled entirely by young girls 
of remarkably interesting and comely appearance. The people offered 
salmon, potatoes, berries and shell-fish for sale. Continuing north- 
ward, the Beaver passed several villages, and was successful in trading. 
Before leaving the northern end of Vancouver Island, furs were 
secured to the value of about five hundred pounds sterling, consisting 
of martens, racoons, beavers, bears, lynxes, and both kinds of otters. 
They were paid for in blankets, tobacco, vermilion, tiles, knives, a 
small quantity of cloth, and two guns. The governor and party visited 
and inspected Fort McLoughlin, and passing through Milbank Sound, 
reached Fort Simpson in due time. This fort was originally built at 
the mouth of the Naas River. It was then a vast resort of Indians- 
of various tribes, amounting to about fourteen thousand. Fort 
Stickeen was next reached, and the party warmly welcomed by Mr. 
McLoughlin, Jun. Between 4,000 and 5,000 Indians, young and old, 
were then depending on that fort for supplies. Fort Taku or " Fort 
Durham " was also visited. At this time the governor learned of 
Finlayson the difficulty with the Indians. The party remained there- 
nearly four days weather-bound. Fully one-third of the population 
on that coast were then held as slaves by the tribes, having been 
taken in war, but some of them were born to continue in slavery. 
They were treated by their owners with the most wanton cruelty. 

WELCOME TO SITKA. On reaching Sitka harbor, the party found 
there five sailing vessels, ranging between two hundred and three 
hundred and fifty tons, besides a large bark in the offing in tow of a. 


steamer, which proved to be the Alexander, from Ochotsk, bringing 
a 'vices from Petersburg down to the end of April. Before coming 
to an anchor, an officer came off, conveying Governor Etholin's com- 
pliments and welcome. Salutes being; exchanged, Governor Simpson 
and Mr. Douglas were accompanied by the officer to His Excellency's 
residence, situated on the top of a rock. They only paid a compli- 
mentary call, and returned to the steamer for the night. 

VISIT OF GOVERNOR ETHOLIN. Next morning, Governor Etholin, 
in full uniform, came on board in his gig, manned by six oars and a 
coxswain, and was received with a salute. After a short visit, he 
returned to the fort accompanied by Governor Simpson and Mr. 
Douglas the fort and the Beaver exchanging salutes simultaneously. 
The visitors then had the honor of being introduced to Madame 
Etholin, a native of Helsin<>fors, in Finland. Says Governor Simpson, 
"this pretty and lady-like woman had come to this, her secluded 
home, from the farthest extremity of the Empire." 

IMMENSE TRADE. A very large trade was carried on between the 
Hudson Bay Company and the Russian- American Company, of which 
Sitka was the principal depot. At the time of Governor Simpson's 
visit, the operations of the Company were becoming more extensive 
than they had previously been. Their exclusive license had been 
extended for a further term of twenty years ; the direction was about 
to be remodeled, and generally an improved order of things was in 
progress. The return of their trade is given at 10,000 fur seals, 
1,000 seal-otters, 12,000 beaver, 2,500 land-otters, and 20,000 sea- 
horse teeth. 

FUR SEALS. Governor Simpson's remarks on the fur seal will 
doubtless be interesting at the present time. His views are sound 
and appropriate. He says : 

" Some twenty or thirty years ago (1810 or 1820), there was a most 
wasteful destruction of the fur seal, when young and old, male and 
female, were indiscriminately knocked on the head. This imprudence, 
as anyone might have expected, proved detrimental in two ways. The 
race was almost extirpated, and the market was glutted to such a 
degree, at the rate for some time of 200,000 skins a year, that the 
prices did not even pay the expenses of carriage. The Russians,, 
however, have now adopted nearly the same plan as the Hudson Bay 
Company pursues in recruiting any of its exhausted districts, killing 
only a limited number of such males as have attained their full 
growth, on a plan peculiarly applicable to the fur seal, inasmuch as 
its habits render the system of husbanding the stock as easy and 
certain as that of destroying it. 


" In the month of May, with something like the regularity of an 
almanac, the fur seals make their appearance at the island of St. Paul, 
one of the Aleutian group. Each old male brings a herd of females, 
under his protection, varying in number, according to his size and 
strength ; the weaker brethren are obliged to content themselves 
with half a dozen wives, while some of the sturdier and fiercer fellows 
preside over harems that are two hundred strong. From the date of 
their arrival in May to that of their departure in October, the whole 
of them are principally ashore on the beach. The females go down 
to the sea, once or twice a day ; while the male, morning, noon and 
night, watches his charge with the utmost jealousy, postponing even 
the pleasures of eating and drinking and sleeping to the duty of 
keeping his favorites together. 

" If any young gallant venture by stealth to approach any senior 
chief's bevy of beauties, he generally atones for his impudence with 
his life, being torn to pieces by the old fellow ; and such of the fair 
ones as may have given the intruder any encouragement are pretty 
sure to catch it in the shape of some secondary punishment. The 
ladies are in the straw, about a fortnight after they arrive at St. 
Paul's ; about two or three weeks afterwards, they lay the single 
fpundation, being all that is necessary of next season's proceedings ; 
and the remainder of their sojourn they devote exclusively to the 
rearing of their young. 

" At last the whole band departs, no one knows whither. The 
mode of capture is this : at the proper time, the whole are driven 
like a flock of sheep, to the establishment, which is about a mile 
distant from the sea; and there the males of four years, with the 
exception of a few that are left to keep up the breed, are separated 
from the rest and killed. In the days of promiscuous massacre, such 
of the mothers as lost their pups would ever and anon return to the 
establishment, absolutely harrowing up the sympathies of the wives 
and daughters of the hunters, accustomed as they were to such scenes,, 
with their doleful lamentations. 

"The fur seal attains the age of fifteen or twenty years, but not 
more. The females do not bring forth young till they are five years 
old. The hunters have frequently marked their ears each season, 
and many of the animals have been notched this way ten times, but 
very few of them oftener. Under the present system the fur seals 
are increasing rapidly in number. Previously to its introduction, the 
annual hunts have dwindled down to three or four thousand. They 
have now gradually got up to thrice that amount, and they are likely 
soon to equal the full demand of the Russian market, not exceeding 
thirty thousand skins. 

" Latterly the sea-otters have again begun to be more numerous on 
the north-west coast, between latitude 60 and 65 on the Aleutian 
and Kurile Islands, and on the shores of Kamschatka. To the south 
of the parallel of 60, they have become pretty nearly extinct. In 
California in particular, where they were once extremely numerous, 


they were destroyed with unusual facility, inasmuch as they were 
generally found in the bay of San Francisco and other inlets, whereas 
to the northward they delighted in the most exposed situations so as 
to render the pursuit of them a service of danger. 

" It was the lamented Cook, or rather his crews after his death, 
that introduced the sea-otter into the civilized world. Though from 
1788 to 1795, the British shared in the fur trade which their country- 
men thus opened, yet from the latter date to 1828, the Russians and 
the United States (Bostons) between them monopolized nearly the 
whole of it. Since 1828, however, the Hudson Bay Company came 
with energy on the coast ; and now while the Russians confine them- 
selves to their own territory, not a single United States vessel is 
engaged in the branch of commerce in question." 

TEETOTALISM. Another subject of importance occupied the atten- 
tion of the governors, namely, the use of intoxicating liquors in 
trading with the Indians. The Russians had been in the habit of 
allowing it to be used as a medium of traffic. In the neighboring 
posts the Hudson Bay Company were in a manner obliged also to 
permit its use. It was suggested to Governor Etholin, and promptly 
acceded to by him, that on or before the last day of the year 1843, 
both companies should entirely abandon the practice of trading 
with the savages in spirituous liquors. They would have fixed an 
earlier limit, had it not been considered necessary that the estab- 
lishments would meanwhile require to be strengthened, in order to 
provide against the possibility of any consequent outrages among 
the involuntary "teetotalers" of the coast. 

PERMISSION TO MARRY. The party commenced their return trip to 
Fort Vancouver on September 13th, calling at Stickeen, where four- 
teen or fifteen of the employes there asked permission to take native 
wives. " Leave to accept the worthless bargains," says Governor 
Simpson, " was granted to all such as had the means of supporting a 
family. These matrimonial connections are a heavy tax on a post 
in consequence of the increased demand for provisions, but form, at 
the same time, a useful link between the traders and the savages." 
Calling at the various trading-posts along the route, and halting to 
trade at convenient places, the party reached Nisqually on the 18th 
of October. 

CHANGE OF HEADQUARTERS. Whilst at Fort Vancouver, during 
November and the latter part of October, there was ample time for 
the Governor-in-Chief and Chief Factors McLoughlin, Ogden and 
Douglas to discuss the affairs of the Company. It was then arranged 
to establish a new fort on the southern coast of Vancouver Island, 


and make that headquarters instead of Fort Vancouver, should the 
boundary line be run on parallel 49 as was surmised. Douglas was 
instructed to make the requisite examination of the locality and com- 
plete the arrangements. The governor was fully acquainted with the 
details of the vast trade which had grown up to the west of the Rocky 
Mountains. He had visited the neighboring settlements, and saw 
the encroachments which the colonists from the east were making, and 
the changes which must take place in the fur trade by their advent. 

FORT VANCOUVER DESCRIBED. The Company's grand depot (Fort 
Vancouver) west of the Rocky Mountains, Governor Simpson describes 
as " situated about ninety miles from the sea, the Columbia in front 
of it being about one mile in width. Within an oblong enclosure of 
upwards of six hundred feet by two hundred, which is surrounded by 
pickets, there are contained several houses, stores, magazines, 
granaries, work-shops, etc., while the dwellings of the servants, the 
stables, the hospital, etc., form a little village on the outside of the 
walls. The people of the establishment, besides officers and native 
laborers, vary in number, according to the season of the year, from 
one hundred and thirty to two hundred. They consist of Canadians, 
Sandwich Islanders, Europeans and half-breeds, and among them are 
agriculturalists, voyagers, blacksmiths, tinsmiths, carpenters, masons, 
tailors, shoemakers, etc. Their weekly rations are usually twenty- 
one pounds of salted salmon and one bushel of potatoes for each man ; 
and in addition to fish, also venison and wild fowl, with occasionally 
a little beef and pork. 

THE RISING GENERATION. "Most of the men are married to 
aboriginal or half-breed women ; and the swarms of children in the 
little village already mentioned, present a strongly suggestive 
contrast with the scantiness of the rising generation in almost every 
native village on the Lower Columbia. Amid so large a population, 
the surgeon of the establishment finds ample employment ; to the 
hospital, already mentioned, the most serious cases are removed, 
seldom exceeding eight or ten in number, and generally consisting of 
fevers, fractures and neglected syphilis. 

LARGK FARMS IN 1841. "The farm of Fort Vancouver contains 
upwards of twelve hundred acres under cultivation, which have this 
year (1841) produced four thousand bushels of wheat, three thousand 
five hundred of barley, oats and pease, and a very large quantity of 
potatoes and other vegetables. The wheat, which has yielded ten 
returns, is of very fine quality, weighing from 65 to 68J Ibs. per 


bushel. There are, moreover, fifteen hundred sheep, and between 
four and five hundred head of cattle." 

WILLIAMETTE SETTLEMENT. At the time of Governor Simpson's 
visit, the Wilhamette settlement extended from the Falls for a 
considerable distance up both banks of the stream, containing about 
.a hundred and twenty farms, varying in size from a hundred to five 
hundred acres each. The produce that season was about thirty-five 
thousand bushels of excellent wheat, with due proportion of oats, 
barley, pease, potatoes, etc. The cattle were three thousand, the 
horses two thousand five hundred, and the hogs an indefinite 

begun about the year 1839, under the auspices of the Hudson Bay 
Company, as a retreat for its retiring servants. These were 
principally French-Canadians, with their half breed families ; there 
were, in 1841, sixty-five new settlers from the United States, most of 
them with wives and children. The whole population, therefore, 
-amounted to about five hundred souls, besides about a thousand 
natives of all ages, who had been domesticated as agricultural 
servants. Of wheat, the Company purchased from the settlers that 
year four thousand bushels ; and from the Company every settler 
received his supplies of imported goods at prices not much higher 
than those paid by their own servants. 

November, Governor Simpson left Fort Vancouver to proceed on his 
journey around the world. The bark Cowlitz was in readiness to 
convey him first to California, then. to the Sandwich Islands, and 
thence back to Sitka. From Sitka he was to sail for Russia in 
Europe, and to St. Petersburg and London. On embarking on the 
Cowlitz, Governor Simpson moralizing, says: "Hitherto I had, with 
few exceptions, traversed scenes which, to say nothing of their 
comparative barrenness of interest, were either in themselves familiar 
to me or differed only in degree from such as were so. But from 
Astoria my every step would impart the zest of novelty to objects 
essentially attractive and important. In California I had before me 
a fragment of the grandest of colonial empires ; in the Sandwich 
Islands I was to contemplate the noblest of all triumphs, the slow 
but sure victory of the highest civilization over the lowest barbarism ; 
and to Russia I looked forward with the peculiar feelings of an 
Englishman, as the only possible rival of his country in the extent 
and variety of moral and political influence." 




THE NEW SITE DECIDED. Factor Douglas, in the early summer of 
1842, made a careful preliminary survey of the southern end of 
Vancouver Island, and found that a more suitable place for the new 
fort could not be found on the coast. He reported favorably on the 
site and surroundings, including Esquimalt, which he said was one of 
the best harbors on the coast. The report was submitted by Douglas 
on his return to Fort Vancouver in July, and after due consideration 
by the factors and traders there assembled, it was decided to commence 
operations at that point as early as practicable the following spring. 

THE SANDWICH ISLANDS. In the meantime Governor Simpson had 
completed his visit to the Sandwich Islands and left there for Sitka r 
where he arrived April 16th. He recounts his journey for the past 
tive months from London, and says : " I have threaded my way 
round nearly half the globe, traversing about two hundred and 
twenty degrees of longitude and upwards of a hundred of latitude ; 
and in this circuitous course I have spent more than a year, fully 
three-fourths on the land and barely one-fourth on the ocean." 

FLAGS HALF-MAST. As the vessel in which he was to proceed tc- 
Ochotsk would not sail for two or three weeks after the time 
expected, he determined to visit Forts Taku and Stickeen. On 
arriving at Fort Taku he noticed the two national flags the Russian 
and the British -hoisted at half-mast high, and on landing was 
informed of the tragic end of Mr. John McLoughlin, jun., the 
gentleman recently in charge. On the night of the 20th, a dispute 
had arisen in the fort, while some of the men were in a state of 
intoxication. Several shots were tired, by one of which McLoughlin 
fell. The fort was thus deprived of its leader. There were about 
two thousand savages assembled near by, so the arrival of Governor. 
Simpson at that time, with two vessels, was fortunate, as the 
garrison was in a state of insubordination. If the fort which the 
natives had proposed to attack had fallen, not only would the whites, 
twenty-two in number, have been destroyed, but the stock of 


ammunition and stores would have made the captors dangerous to 
the other establishments on the coast. 

FUTURE GOOD BEHAVIOR. A council was called, at which four 
leading chiefs appeared. An explanation of their intentions was 
demanded. They repudiated any design on the establishment on 
their own part; they admitted, however, that an attack on the fort 
had been recommended by some rash youths, but had been opposed 
by the older and wiser heads. Governor Simpson, while congratu- 
lating them on not having committed any overt act of hostility, 
pointed out that had they done so they would have been most 
severely punished, both by the Russians and by the Company. They 
promised that in future they would so conduct themselves that they 
and their people would not only merit the approbation of the 
Company, but would be security against any attacks on the part of 
the neighboring tribes. 

AN INDIAN STABBED. An Indian brawl was witnessed by the 
Russian governor and Governor Simpson from the fort in the village 
below, which resulted in one of the natives stabbing the other through 
the lungs with his dagger. About a thousand savages turned out 
with horrible yells to revenge the death. Governor Etholin, on the 
battery, endeavored in vain to appease the fury of the mob ; happily, 
the approach of night prevented civil war. Nexjb day two slaves 
were killed to atone for the death of the Indian who was slain. 

No MORE RUM. As this scene of violence and the recent tragedy 
at Stickeen were clearly the result of drinking to intoxication, both 
Governor Etholin and Governor Simpson then determined, on behalf 
of their respective companies, to discontinue the use of intoxicating 
or spirituous liquors in trading with the natives. The agreement 
formerly alluded to was entered into to that effect, to come into 
operation at Sitka from the date of signature, and at every other 
post from the day on which it might become known. The treaty at 
Sitka was immediately put to the test. In order to drown all 
remains of former animosity, the savage combatants made applica- 
tion, as a matter of course, without delay for another supply of rum. 
No doubt the miserable creatures were greatly astonished to find that 
without their consent they had been made to take the pledge of total 
and perpetual abstinence. They retired in sullen silence, and doubt- 
less many a grave council was held on the north-west coast to devise 
means of removing the obnoxious restriction. Governor Simpson 
left Sitka on the 9th of May for Oohotsk. The voyage occupied 
forty-four days. 


The year 1843 is a semi-centennial mark in the history of British 
Columbia. In that year the Hudson Bay Company's fort, Camosun, 
afterwards named Victoria, was built, and formed the basis of the 
present capital of the Province. Just fifty years prior to that time, 
in 1793, Alexander Mackenzie led his memorable expedition across 
the Continent to the Pacific coast, by way of Peace River, through an 
unknown country amongst tierce savages who had never befoie seen 
a, white man. The celebrated Captain Vancouver in that year com- 
pleted some of his most important surveys on the north-west coast, 
a portion of which has since formed the basis of the Alaska bound- 
ary question. In 1893, the centenary of Sir Alexander Mackenzie's 
great achievement was celebrated in the city of Victoria, as already 
referred to, and his portrait painted and placed in the Pioneers' Hall, 
to be transferred to the Provincial Parliament Buildings now in 
course of erection. The Sir William Wallace Society, of Victoria, 
took a leading part in the centennial celebration and in having the 
portrait completed. 

A GLIMPSE OF CAMOSUN. It having been decided to locate a new 
fort on the southern end of Vancouver Island, an expedition of some 
fifteen men was ready on the 1st of March, 1843, to leave Fort Van- 
couver, under command of Factor Douglas. They remained at the 
Cowlitz farm and Nisqually for a week, obtaining supplies, which 
were placed on board the Beaver, which awaited them. They left for 
the north on the 13th, and anchored next day opposite that which is 
now the outer harbor. " The view landwards was enchanting. Before 
them lay a vast body of land upon which no white man then stood. 
Not a human habitation was in sight ; not a beast, scarcely a bird. 
Even the gentle murmur of the voiceless wood was drowned by the 
gentle beating of the surf upon the shore. There was something 
specially charming, bewitching in the place. Though wholly natural, 
it did not seem so. It was not at all like pure art, but it was as 
though nature and art had combined to map and make one of the 
most pleasing prospects in the world. 

THE ISLAND LANDWARDS. "So park-like in appearance was the 
region round and back of the harbor that the European first landing 
would scarcely have manifested surprise had he encountered work- 
men, who, while subduing that which was evil or ungainly, were yet 
subordinating art to nature, and striving with their artificial changes 
still to preserve nature's beauties. The fertile vales, warm groves, 
and glassy slopes of the rolling plateau were intersected by serpentine 


ribbons of glistening water, and bound round by rocks as smooth and 
symmetrical as if placed there by design. These gave the ground a 
substantial air and a warning to the encroaching sea, as if progress 
had specially prepared the place and the foundations of civilization 
were there already laid. 

purer water in the sunlight than that which rippled in the coves and 
bays around ; and the Olympian Heights from this standpoint, with 
the glistening water for a foreground and cloud-cut midway above 
their base, as they often are, seemed translated heavenwards. Never 
were mountains more aptly named than those by the early explorer 
Meares ; and if there be anywhere a spot on which an American 
Jove might fitly hold his court, it is on these high, uplifted hills, 
their base resting on clouds, and their white tops bathed in celestial 

A FORTIFIED VILLAGE. The village of the natives the Songhies 
was not visible from the vessel at anchor. It was situated on the 
western side of the entrance to the harbor and about a mile distant. 
They also had a fortified place within stakes, enclosing an area of 
about one hundred and fifty feet square at the head of the 
harbor. This was to protect them from the fierce Cowichins, who 
had a habit of creeping down the strait stealthily in their canoes, 
entering villages at night, massacring the men and carrying the 
women and children into slavery. 

FIRST SALUTE. Soon after the Beaver came to anchor, two canoes 
were seen. On the discharge of a cannon a swarrn of savages 
appeared on the bank, confusedly moving hither and thither like the 
disturbed inhabitants of an ant-hill. No work was attempted to be 
done that day. The night passed quietly. The following morning a 
swarm of canoes surrounded the steamer. 

MR, DOUGLAS SET OUT EARLY on the 15th of March to select a 
site for the fort and to procure timber for the building. On the shore 
directly opposite the anchorage, the trees were short, crooked and 
not at all suitable. He was anxious to secure straight cedar trees as 
being most desirable for pickets, being lighter and more durable 
under ground. These had to be brought from some distance. 

FATHER BOLDUC. Along with the expedition, according to Bancroft, 
came a Jesuit missionary, J. B. Z. Bolduc, who claimed to have been 
the first priest to set foot on Vancouver Island. On the same day 
that Douglas landed, Father Bolduc accompanied him to where the 


savages had congregated up the channel. There, it is recorded 
by the historian, "the priest was immediately embraced by six 
hundred souls, which number swelled to twelve hundred before his 
departure. Men, women and children all must touch the hem 
of his garment, all must shake hands with him and absorb in 
their being some of that divine afflatus that flows from the Lord's 

MASS WAS CELEBRATED on the 19th. A rustic chapel was impro- 
vised a boat's awning serving as a canopy, with branches of fir 
trees enclosing the sides. A great gathering was there Songhies, 
Clallams and Cowichins. On the 24th, Father Bolduc purchased a 
canoe, and was conveyed by Chief Tsilaltchach and ten warriors to 
Whidbey Island. Next day and the following day he is said to have 
shaken hands with over one thousand natives, chiefly Skagits. They 
erected for him a building as a church, twenty-five feet by twenty- 
eight, of logs which they cut within two days. The building was 
lined inside with mats and covered with cedar bark. On the 3rd of 
April the missionary left them, returning to Nisqually, naively remark- 
ing, "that, although the heathen hereabouts gladly received the Word, 
he was not sure they fully comprehended it ; for when he attempted 
to reform their morals they straightway relapsed into indifference." 

NATIVE HELPERS. Factor Douglas having determined on a site, 
put his men to work, cutting and squaring timber, and six of them 
at digging a well. He explained to the natives, who had assembled 
in considerable numbers, "that he had come to build among them, 
and to bring them arms and implements, clothing and beautiful 
ornaments, which they might have for skins. Whereat they were 
greatly pleased, and eagerly pressed their assistance upon the fort- 
builders, who were glad to employ them at the rate of one blanket 
for every forty pickets they would bring. The pickets were to be 
twenty-two feet Jong and three feet in circumference. Axes were 
furnished, but to be returned." 

MEN FROM THE NORTH. Having commenced the new fort, Mr. 
Douglas went north on the Beaver, trading along the coast as he 
went, to close Forts Taku, Stickeen and McLoughlin. This he accom- 
plished, taking Mr. Roderick Finlayson from Fort Simpson and 
replacing him by another officer ; Fort Simpson was allowed to remain 
intact as the headquarters of the northern interior, which position 
it yet continues to hold. Mr4 Charles Ross was in charge at Fort 
McLoughlin before it was abandoned, as above mentioned. 


THE RETURN PARTY, numbering about thirty-five, arrived from the 
north on the 1st of June, with the stores, etc., from the abandoned 
posts. Not much progress had been made in building since the 
departure of the Beaver. The stores were yet without shelter on the 
shore, but rapid progress was made after the reinforcements from the 
north. Buildings begun were soon completed, the goods were all 
landed and stored in them ; the men protecting themselves the best 
way they could until other buildings were ready for their accom- 

ARRIVAL OF NATIVES. From the neighboring islands and along 
the coast, and from the mainland the natives nocked in to see the 
work which was being carried on. They camped near the new fort, 
and were all well armed; but, being without their wives and children, 
were looked upon with suspicion by the party engaged in building 
and were closely watched. The Hudson Bay Company's force then 
.at Camosun numbered about fifty men, all trained to the use of arms 
and active, and constantly on their guard against surprises. The 
natives did not attempt any attack, but contented themselves with 
pilfering, which seemed to come natural to them. 

EXPEDITIOUS WORK. Three months after the arrival of the parties 
from the north, the stockade, with bastions at the angles, and store 
and dwelling-houses within, was completed. The schooner Cadboro 
arrived with supplies and goods from Fort Vancouver. Charles Ross, 
the senior officer in charge of Fort McLoughlin at the time of its 
abandonment, was placed in command, with Roderick Finlayson as 
second. Mr. Douglas announced the new establishment capable of 
self-defence, and departed with the Beaver and the Cadboro and their 
men in October, amid long and hearty cheers from those on shore. 

THE WINTER PASSED without any outbreak or hostilities. Unfin- 
ished work was proceeded with on the inside of the stockade, which 
was formed of cedar pickets eighteen feet above ground. The enclosure 
was 150 yards on each side, witli two block-houses or bastions at the 
angles, and dwellings and store-houses within. The buildings within 
the fort proper were considered complete during 1844. This agrees 
with Mr. Finlayson's autobiography. 

DESCRIPTION OF THE FORT. James Deans describes the fort as he 
saw it in 1853 as follows: "The bastions were of hewn logs some 
thirty feet in height, and were connected by palisades about twenty 
feet high. Within the palisades were the stores, numbered from one 
to five, and a blacksmith's shop, besides dining-hall, cook-house and 
-chapel. The ground, to the extent of an acre, was cleared and 




enclosed by a palisade forming a square. On the north and south 
corners was a tower containing six or eight pieces of ordnance each 
(Finlayson says, 9-pound ers). The north lower served as a prison, 
the south one for firing salutes. In the centre of the east and west 
sides were main gateways, each having a little door to let people out 
or in after hours. On the right, entering by the front, or south gate, 
was a cottage in which was the post-office. It 
was kept by an officer of the Company, a Captain 
Sangster. Next in order was the smithy. Next 
and first on the south side, was a large store- 
house, in which fish-oil, etc., were stowed away. 
Next came the carpenter's shop. Close to this, 
was a large room, provided with bunks, for the 
Company's men to sleep in. Next and last on 
that side was a large building, a sort of bar- 
racks for new arrivals. Between this corner and 
the east gate were the chapel and chaplain's house. On the other side 
of the gate was a large building which served as a dining-room for 
the officers ; adjoining this were the cook-house and pantry. On the 
fourth side was a 
double row of build- 
ings for storing furs 
previous to ship- 
ment to England, 
and goods before 
taking their place 
in the trading-store. 
Behind these stores 
was a fire-proof 
building, used as a 
magazine for stor- 
ing gunpowder. On 
the lower corner 
was another cot- 
tage, in which lived 
Finlayson and his 
family, who was then chief factor. On the other side of the front, 
or west, gate was the flagstaff and belfry. The central part of the 
enclosure was open, and was always kept clean. Through this 
enclosure ran the main road, leading from the two gates. 

" If a fort was to be built Douglas would specify the number of 
men to be employed, the tools to be used, among which the never- 
failing Canadian chopping-axe was always promim-nt, if indeed it 
was not the only one, if a few augers, saws and chisels be excepted. 
Finlayson had been the pupil of Douglas, as Douglas had been the 
pupil of McLoughlin. Under the influence of Douglas, Finlayson 
had imbibed similar ideas ; so that when ordered to build Fort 
Camosun, without a single nail, he did it. Strange as it may appear, 



houses, palisades and bastions were erected without the use of one 
iron nail or spike, wooden pegs alone being employed." 

THE VERY BEST MEN. There is no doubt but the site of Fort 
Victoria was the best selection which could have been made on the 
coast, not only for fur-trading purposes, but for subsequent trade and 
commerce when the country became settled. A writer on the subject 
says : " The life of a fur trader or factor was one perpetual lesson in 
observation. To study well the country, its configuration and con- 
tents, was their daily occupation. Hence the location of the chief 
city of British Columbia was not, as has been so many times the case 
in city building, the result of accident. The very best place that the 
the very best men, after due deliberation and examination could find, 
was chosen, and in the enjoyment of the result of this sound judgment 
their descendants forever may call them blessed. Those to whom more 
immediate thanks are due are, James Douglas, John McLoughlin, 
Roderick Finlayson, John Work, Anderson, Tolmie and McNeill. 
Governor Simpson and the London management were only secondary 
as to their influence as to location. It was the chief factors and 
chief traders of the day who really determined matters." 

DOUGLAS AND DR. MCLOUGHLIN. The leading man among them 
was James Douglas. His colleague and former leader, McLoughlin, 
was now in his decline. He had been the leader in North- West affairs 
for about eighteen years; but on account of his favorable leanings 
towards outside settlers who were arriving, it was determined by 
the directors in London that he should retire. His mantle fell on 

BANCROFT ON FINLAYSON. The officer in charge of the new fort, 
Charles Ross, died early in 1844. Finlayson, being next officer, was 
appointed chief in command. Speaking of him Bancroft says : 
"Though always a leading man in the Company and in the colony, he 
has not been so prominent as to have excited to any general extent 
jealousy or obloquy by reason of his position. Among business men, 
among those who have met him almost daily for a period of forty 
years, or are intimate with his course and character, he is pronounced 
a shrewd, practical, clear-headed Scotchman, who, though sometimes 
seeking office and assuming public duties, meddles little with his 
neighbor's affairs, but attends to his own business, and does it so well 
and thoroughly as usually to command success. Kind, honorable, 
and exceedingly courteous, showing himself by instinct a gentleman 

in the highest sense of that much misapplied word, he possesses 


neither the genius nor the weakness of McLouglilin, nor the 
chivalrous strength or the cold, calculating formality of Douglas. He 
is not wholly self abandoned in his well-doing like the one, nor 
snow capped, by reason of his moral or political elevation, like the 
other. Being not so great a man as either, his faults do not stand 
out so conspicuously." 

STOCK FOR THE ISLAND. On the return trip of the Beaver, after 
landing Factor Douglas and party from the new fort, cattle and horses 
were brought from Nisqually. The cattle were chiefly of Mexican 
origin and were wild and unmanageable. When first turned loose 
from the steamer, with head and tail erect they darted hither and 
thither, then plunged into the thicket, and it was with no small 
difficulty that they were finally corralled and controlled. In due 
time, however, a sufficient number for hauling timber and farming 
purposes were subdued and brought under the yoke, and, when not 
at work, were turned out to graze along with the horses and other 

INDIANS OBJECT TO CATTLE. This new method of having such work 
performed by animals, which, in the opinion of the savages, should be 
done by women, did not meet with their approval. In their way of 
thinking the women would become idle and lazy and too proud to work, 
consequently would so fall in value as materially to affect the comfort 
of those who might be in possession of six or ten wives; besides, this 
large, fat game, so easily caught, was very desirable. Their logic 
was convincing to themselves, although the white men had warned 
them, under penalty of severe displeasure, not to interfere with the 
civilized game. 

COWICIIINS HELP THEMSELVES. Temptation was too strong. A 
band of Cowichins, under Chief Tsoughilam, who had come down from 
the north on a plundering expedition, had encamped in the vicinity 
of the fort. They quietly helped themselves to some of the best of 
the work-oxen and lived sumptuously. The fort-builders having need 
of their cattle, found only the remains of their faithful assistants 
with traces of the carcasses having been conveyed to the Cowichin 

Finlayson despatched a message to the chief demanding delivery of 
the offenders or payment of the slain animals. The savage indignantly 
replied : " What, these animals yours ! Did you make them. I 
consider them all the property of nature, and whatever nature sends 
me, that I slay and eat, asking no questions." 


The messenger replied: "These cattle were brought from beyond 
the great sea ; they belong to those who brought them, and unless 
you make proper restitution the gates of the fort will be closed 
against you." " Close your gates, if yo-i like," shouted the chief in a 
great rage, " and I will batter them down. Close your gates, 
forsooth ! Think you we did not live before the white man came 1 
and think you we should die were he swept from these shores V 

COVETOUS CHIEFS. Tsoughilam made no idle threat. He calcu- 
lated on assistance from the chieftains and their warriors in the 
neighborhood. Tsilaltchach, the greatest and bravest among the 
Songhies, had watched many days, with itching palms, the good 
things carried in behind the palisades, and would not scruple in the 
least to attempt to secure some of them. The Cowichin chief called 
a council, and in effect said to them : " Reptiles have crept hither ; 
reptiles with strange stings, whom it were well to crush upon the 
* spot, lest they should soon overspread the whole island. The reward 
of our work may be found behind the palisades." 

ADVOCATE THEIR RIGHTS. Tsilaltchach, the chief of the Songhies, 
next spoke and said : " We and our forefathers have lived in 
happiness upon this island for many ages before the existence of 
these strangers was known. We have eaten of the fruits of the 
earth, have bathed in the waters and in the sunshine, have hunted 
our forests unquestioned of any, and have fought away our enemies 
manfully. Is all now to be taken from us 1 " 

Another brave sprang to his feet shouting : " We will meet this 
intruder as we have met those of the past. We can do without their 
trinkets, or, what is better, we can take them without asking." A 
deep grunt of applause went around the council, and war was 

WATCH KEPT. From the messenger's report it was considered 
necessary that within the fort watch should be kept night and day to 
prevent surprise. After two days, a large force assembled round the 
fort to make the threatened attack. The bastions were manned. 
Soon amid savage yells and terrifying antics, a shower of musket 
bullets came rattling against the fort, riddling the stockade and 
rattling on the roofs of the houses. Finlayson ordered that not a 
shot was to be returned, though it was with the utmost difficulty he 
could restrain his men. The savages continued their fire for full 
half an hour, when seeing no prospect of surrender, they ceased firing 
to save their ammunition. 


HE GAVE THE WORD. Then the commander of the fort appeared 
on the parapet of the bastion, and beckoning the chief of the 
Cowichins to come within speaking distance, said : " What would you 
do 1 What folly, with your peppery guns, to think to demolish our 
stronghold ? What evil would you bring upon yourselves ? Know 
you not that with one motion of my finger I could blow you all into 
the bay 1 And I will do it, too. See your houses yonder !" And 
instantly, upon the word, a 9-pounder belched forth, with astounding 
noise, a large load of grape shot, tearing into splinters the cedar 
lodge at which it was pointed. 

THE INTERPRETER'S SIGNAL. The astonished and affrighted savages 
ran howling towards their camp, from whence arose howls of despair 
from the women and children. No one was injured, however, as the 
terrified husbands and fathers supposed they were. Finlayson had 
no desire to hurt them, only to teach them a lesson. Before the 
parley, and while the bullets were falling thick around, he had formed 
the plan of training them without doing them injury. He ordered 
his interpreter to slip from the back gate and run to the camp, as if 
escaping from a foe, and oh arriving at the chiefs lodge, to warn the 
inmates to instant flight, as the fort was preparing to tire upon them, 
and to signal back to him by swinging a handkerchief when they had 
removed. Hence no damage was done, save the shivering to splinters 
of some pine slabs. 

A PARLEY REQUESTED. Within an hour a deputation of the 
principal men of the attacking party appeared at the fort and 
requested a parley with the white chief. FinJayson told them they 
might come within the stockade, and as a guarantee of good faith he 
agreed to send out two of his men as hostages. The offer was 
accepted. It was fully explained to them how he could destroy them 
if he wished. To impress them, he showed them his men fully 
accoutred, his big guns and his little guns, and powder and balls, and 
knives and swords. He assured them he only wished to do them 
good ; but he insisted that those who killed the oxen should be given 
up for punishment, or the cattle paid for. They preferred the latter 

THE PIPE OF PEACE SMOKED. Before nightfall they returned with 
furs to the full amount of the damages. The pipe of peace was then 
smoked, and promises of friendship exchanged. Thus the first battle 
on Vancouver Island, between the whites and the aborigines, was 
ended without bloodshed. 


A CRACK SHOT. Next day the natives were anxious to see the 
great gun tried again. Finlayson told them he would give them a 
sample of hosv he could destroy canoes, if they would place an old 
one on the water. This was no sooner done, and the cannon trained, 
than bang went the ball, and after smashing a hole in the boat, 
bounded along the surface of the water to the opposite shore. This 
increased their astonishment and respect for the white man's power. 

PLUNDER RESTORED. Not long after these extraordinary events 
in the eyes of the savages, a tribe from Whidbey Island came to 
Camosun to trade. Their business having been completed, they 
started for their boats with the goods. It so happened a feud existed 
between this tribe (the Skagits) and the Songhies of Camosun, so the 
latter fell upon the Skagits and stripped them of their purchases. 
The plundered party returned to the fort and told of their misfortune. 
Finlayson ordered immediate restoration of the stolen goods, which 
was at once complied with, and promises made of better behavior. 
By a judicious balance of power and a few friendly presents to the 
chiefs, Mr. Finlayson in a short time obtained their confidence and 
ultimately their respect. 

SHIPS DIRECT TO VICTORIA. The next year after Finlayson was 
placed in full command, he turned his attention to the production of 
food. The demand for provisions to supply the Russian contract 
required all the spare time of the employes at the fort to produce 
them. The natives also assisted as laborers and herdsmen, and 
were paid at the same rate as whites for labor performed. 
Business was progressing smoothly. The new fort would certainly 
soon become the first depot of the Hudson Bay Company's goods on 
the Pacific coast. Outward-bound ships from England now had 
orders to sail direct for this port, and after landing here all the sjoods 
destined for the coast trade, to proceed to the Columbia with the 

GOODS VIA CAPE HORN. The first vessel to enter Victoria harbor 
direct from England was the Vancouver, in 1845. There were then 
three vessels in the Company's employ, between London and the 
north-west coast, the Vancouver, the Cowlitz, and the Columbia, 
These ships made yearly voyages, bringing supplies always twelve 
months in advance, which enabled the forts to have on hand from 
one to two years' supply. The coast trade was still to be confined to 
the coast tribes, but Victoria would soon become the distributing 
point instead of Fort Vancouver. At first a few goods had been 


brought over the mountains from eastern poi ts, but so difficult and 
expensive was that mode of transport that it was abandoned, and all 
supplies for the western slope were brought from England to Fort 
Vancouver, round Cape Horn. The inland trade continued to be 
supplied by the old route from Fort Vancouver, up the Columbia to 
Okanagan, Kamloops, and Fort St. James. A change had now 
taken place, especially as far as the coast supply was concerned. 

WHALERS. Also, in 1845, a fleet of five United States whalers 
called at Fort Victoria for supplies the name " Camosun " having 
been changed first to Fort Albert, and then to Fort Victoria. The 
whaling fleet continued to call at Fort Victoria until the port of 
San Fiancisco was established. 



OCCUPATION IN COMMON MUST CEASE. Outside pressure was now 
being applied to bring on a division of Oregon territory, the ownership 
of which was btill unsettled. It was evident, as settlers were arriving 
in considerable numbers from the United States and elsewhere, that 
the country could no longer be kept wholly as a game preserve. This 
partnership or occupation in common by the representatives of two 
powerful nations, in the very nature of things, must soon be dissolved. 
It was impossible to prevent settlement ; it was not expedient, nor 
could it be expected that the officers and servants of the Hudson 
Bay Company would treat settlers as enemies, for they were, as a 
rule, just and humane men. But in sentiment and in policy, the 
subjects and citizens of the two powers were to some extent 
antagonistic. Still more so were the 'private interests of the fur 
company, who down nearly to the time under review had dominated 
the whole territory. They knew it was impossible to conduct a 
successful peltry business in the face of increasing settlement. 
Hence their wisdom in making provision in the dividing line, which 
might not shut out the Company from using the Columbia River as 
the principal channel of communication with the northern interior, 
as it formerly was. 


CAPTAIN GORDON'S ARRIVAL. Her Majesty's ship America arrived. 
Th'is vessel was under command of the Hon. Captain John Gordon, 
brother of the Earl of Aberdeen, then Prime Minister of Britain. 
The object of the visit was to obtain information regarding the coast 
and the country to assist the British Government in settling the 
boundary question then pending. Mr. Finlayson was sent for and 
consulted. It was decided by Captain Gordon not to anchor in 
Esquimalt harbor, as he wished to send two of his officers to examine 
and report on Puget Sound, Fort Vancouver and the Columbia River 
country. They therefore sailed to Port Discovery, from which point 
Captain Parke, of the Marines, and Lieutenant Peel, son of Sir 
Robert Peel, were sent by way of the Cowlitz to the Columbia, the 
ship to remain at anchor in Port Discovery until their return. 

HE SEES THE COUNTRY. Captain Gordon, accompanied by Mr. 
Finlayson, recrossed the straits to Fort Victoria in the ship's long 
boat. He remained there for two weeks, until his officers returned 
from Fort Vancouver. Several excursions were made on horseback, 
hunting, and to examine the country. On one occasion, in the 
vicinity of Cedar Hill, Mr. Finlayson mentions in his autobiography, 
they fell in with a band of deer, which soon disappeared in a thicket, 
to the disappointment of Captain Gordon, who was a noted deer- 
stalker in Scotland. On their return to the fort through the partially 
open country, with the native grass as high as the horses' knees, Mr. 
Finlayson made the remark, "What a fine country this is ! " to which 
the Captain replied, ' he would not give one of the barren hills of 
Scotland for all he saw around him." Officers Parke and Peel 
returned from the Columbia, accompanied by James Douglas, and 
%ifter a short delay, the America returned to England. 

ROYAL ENGINKERS. The arrival of two Royal Engineers, Lieuten- 
ants Warre and Vavasour, at Fort Vancouver, required that Mr. 
Douglas should return there. These officers were commissioned by 
the British Government to make a special report on the resources 
and condition of the country. They travelled across the Rocky 
Mountains along with the annual express of the Hudson Bay Com- 
pany from York Factory, which that year (1845) was in charge of 
Chief Factor Ogden. Their report was not very nattering to the 
country through which they had passed ; indeed, from the waterways 
not much could be seen on which to base a very favorable report. 
Joseph W. McKay, who then had general supervision of the north 
coast establishments, and who was detailed to attend the British 


officers in their examination of the district, to take charge of bag- 
gage and provide animals, guides, etc., testifies that with regard to 
the Cowlitz district, and the region between the Columbia and the 
Straits of Fuca, they declared it should be held at all hazards. 

" FIFTY-FOUR FORTY OR FIGHT." At this time a cry was raised in 
the United States of ''fifty-four forty or fight," which was interpreted 
to mean that if Great Britain did not yield peaceable possession of all 
the territory west of the Rocky Mountains, between the possessions 
of Mexico on the south and Russia on the north (by them said to be 
latitude 54 40'), the United States would fight for it. This was 
a game of bluff, and most unreasonable, for in the negotiations of 
1826, the United States plenipotentiaries proposed that the navigation 
of the Columbia should be made free to both parties, and conceding 
the entire left bank of the Columbia River as far as the 49th parallel, 
thereby giving up to them the exclusive possession of the Lewis and 
Clarke Rivers, and the intermediate territory. 

STRONG LETTER FROM SIR RICHARD. Sir Richard Pakenham, who 
was negotiator on behalf of Great Britain, says in a letter, September 
12th, 1844: "It is believed that by this arrangement most ample 
justice would be done to the claims of the United States, on whatever 
ground advanced, with relation to the Oregon territory. As regards 
extent of territory, they would obtain, acre for acre, nearly half of 
the entire territory to be divided. As relates to the navigation of 
the principal river, they would enjoy a perfect equality of right with 
Great Britain ; and with respect to harbors, Great Britain shows 
every disposition to consult their convenience in this particular. On 
the other hand, were Great Britain to abandon the line of the 
Columbia as a frontier, and to surrender the right to the navigation 
of that river, the prejudice occasioned to them by such an arrange- 
ment would, beyond all proportion, exceed the advantage accruing to 
the United States from the possession of a few more square miles of 
territory. It must be obvious to every impartial investigator of the 
subject, that in adhering to the line of the Columbia, Great Britain is 
not influenced by motives of ambition, with reference to the extension 
of territory, but by considerations of -utility, not to say necessity, 
which cannot be lost sight of, and for which allowance ought to be 
made in an arrangement professing to be based on considerations of 
mutual convenience and advantage.'' 

OTHER UNITED STATES CLAIMS. The claims of the United States 
were based on the title of Spain to the north-west coast. The third 


article of the convention between the United States and Great 
Britain, in 1818, states " that any country that may be claimed by 
either party on the north-west coast of America, westward of the 
Stony (Rocky) Mountains, shall, together with its harbors, bays and 
creeks, and the navigation of all rivers within the same, be free and 
open, for the term of ten years from the date of the signature of the 
present convention, to the vessels, citizens and subjects of the two 
powers ; it being well understood that this agreement is not to be 
construed to the prejudice of any claim which either of the two high 
contracting parties may have to any part of the said country ; nor 
shall it be taken to affect the claims of any other power or state to 
any part of the said country, the only object of the high contracting 
parties in that respect being to prevent disputes and differences 
among themselves." 

GREAT BRITAIN'S ARGUMENTS. Afterwards the United States 
claimed : "The first discovery of the mouth of the River Columbia by 
Captain Gray, of Boston, in 1792; the first discovery of the sources 
of that river, and the exploration of its course to the sea, by Captains 
Lewis and Clarke, in 1805-6, and the establishment of the first posts 
and settlements in the territory in question." They also based claims 
on Fort Astoria, which were discussed along with the Spanish title at 
great length. 

The arguments in support of the claim of Great Britain were : 
That the River Columbia was not first discovered by Gray in 1792, 
who had only entered its mouth ; but that it was discovered in 1788 
by Lieutenant (Captain) Meares, of the British navy; that in 1792-93, 
Vancouver or his officers explored the river for some distance from 
the mouth, and was the first to make a correct map of the coast, 
including Puget Sound ; that the explorations of Lewis and Clarke, 
in 1805-6, were only of that portion of the Columbia west of the 
rivers named after them, not far from Walla Walla in latitude 46, 
and could not be considered as confirming the claim of the United 
States, because, if not before, at least in the same and subsequent 
years, the British North-West Company had, by means of their 
agents, already established posts on the head waters or main branch 
of the river. 

OREGON BOUNDARY. 1827. An attempt was made in 1827 to 
settle the boundary question. Great Britain was represented by 
Messrs. Huskisson and Addington. The following is a summary of 
the arguments they advanced : 


"That Great Britain did not claim exclusive sovereignty over any 
portion of the territory on the Pacific, between the 42nd and 49th 
parallels of latitude. Her present claim, not in respect to any part, 
but to the whole, is limited to a right of joint occupancy in common 
with other states, leaving the right of exclusive dominion in abey- 
ance ; and her pretentions tend to the mere maintenance of her own 
rights, in resistance to the exclusive character of the pretentions of 
the United States. 

CONVENTION OP 1790. "That the rights of Great Britain are 
recorded and defined in the convention of 1790. They embrace the 
right to navigate the waters of those countries, to settle in and over 
any part of them, and to trade with the inhabitants and occupiers of 
the same. These rights have been peaceably exercised ever since the 
date of that convention ; that is, for a period of nearly forty years. 
Under that convention, valuable British interests have grown up in 
these countries. It is admitted that the United States possess the 
same rights, although they have been exercised by them only in a 
single instance, at Astoria, the restitution of which, in 1818, was 
accompanied by express reservations of the claims of Great Britain 
to that territory ; and that the titles to the territory in question, 
derived by the United States from Spain, amounted to nothing more 
than the rights secured to Spain equally with Great Britain by the 
Nootka Sound Convention of 1790. 

UNITED STATES DORMANT SINCE 1813. "That whilst, since the 
year 1813, the United States had not exercised any of the rights 
alluded to, the subjects of Great Britain have had for many years 
numerous settlements and trading-posts in the territory in question ; 
several of these posts are on the tributary waters of the Columbia, 
several upon the main river, some to the northward and others to the 
southward of that river, and they navigate the Columbia as the sole 
channel for the conveyance of their produce to the British stations 
nearest to the sea, and for its shipment thence to Great Britain ; and 
it is also by the Columbia and its tributary streams that these ports 
and settlements receive their annual supplies from Great Britain. 

" That to the interests and establishments which British industry 
and enterprise have created, Great Britain owes protection ; and both 
as regards settlement and freedom of trade and navigation, that 
protection will be given, with every intention not to infringe the 
co-ordinate rights of the United States, it being the desire of the 
British Government, so long as the joint occupancy continues, to r 
regulate its own obligations by the same rules which govern the 
-obligations of every other occupying party." 

THE CONVENTION did not arrive at any definite settlement beyond 
ratifying the third article of the convention of 1818, already quoted, 
and further deciding that either of the high contracting parties, on 
giving twelve months' notice after 20th October, 1828, might annul 
and abrogate this convention. From that time until 1845-46 the 


Hudson Bay Company continued to carry on their extensive arid 
prosperous business, both in the interior of the territory from the far 
north to San Francisco, without any interference, except the advance 
of settlement from the east. 

OREGON TREATY, PASSED 15TH JUNE, 1846. Notwithstanding all 
the arguments adduced by Great Britain, what is now known as the 
Oregon Treaty was inexplicably passed on the 15th of June, 1846. 
The first article provides as follows: "From the point on the 49th 
parallel of north latitude, where the boundary laid down in existing 
treaties and conventions between the United States and Great 
Britain terminates, the line of boundary between the territories of 
the United States and those of her Britannic Majesty shall be 
continued westward along the 49th parallel of north latitude, to the 
middle of the channel which separates the Continent from Vancouver 
Island, and thence southerly through the middle of the said channel, 
and of the Fu. a Straits, to the Pacific Ocean. Provided, however, 
that the navigation of the whole said channel and straits, south of 
the 49th parallel of north latitude, remain free and open to both 
parties. " 

The second article provided for the free navigation of the Columbia 
River by the Hudson Bay Company and the British subjects trading 
with them, from the 49th parallel of north latitude to the ocean. 
The third article provided that the possessory rights of the Hudson 
Bay Company and all other British subjects, to the territory south of 
the said 49th parallel, should be respected. 

WAR VESSELS ARRIVING. Some time elapsed before any attempt 
was made to carry out the terms of the treaty and to mark out the 
boundary line therein stipulated. To guard the interests of Great 
Britain on the northern coast, several vessels were ordered to proceed 
to Fort Victoria. They were the Cormorant, Captain Gordon, not the 
Earl of Aberdeen's brother, already mentioned, but another of the same 
name; the Fisgard, Captain Duntze; the Constance, Captain Courtney; 
the Inconstant. Captain Shepherd ; and the surveying vessels Herald, 
Captain Kelletfc, and Pandora, Captain Wood. It so turned out that 
there was not the slightest necessity for the appearance of that fleet. 
The surveying vessels made a superficial survey of the Straits of Fuca 
and then sailed southward. The Cormorant was a steamship. 

CORRESPONDENCE WAS CONTINUED between the two governments, 
relative to the location of the boundary. Mr. Crorupton, the then 
British minister at Washington, was instructed to propose that 


commissioners should be appointed for the purpose of carrying down 
such parts of the boundary line as should, on consultation, seem 
advisable. On the 13th of January, 1848, he wrote to Mr. Buchanan, 
Secretary of State, a letter setting forth the line from the Lake of 
the Woods, as running along the 49th parallel of latitude, and the 
ascertainment of that parallel on the surface of the ground being an 
operation of astronomical observation, could be accomplished with as 
much precision at a future time as at present. 

MR. CROMPTON SAYS : " But between the Gulf of Georgia and the 
Straits of Fuca the line is less distinctly and accurately denned by 
the verbal description of the treaty by which it is established, and 
local circumstances render it probable that if this part of the line 
were not to be precisely determined, the uncertainty as to its course 
might give rise to disputes between British subjects and the citizens 
of the United States. It appears, therefore, to her Majesty's Govern- 
ment, that it would be wise to proceed forthwith to take measures 
for marking out that portion of the line of boundary. 

" For this purpose, her Majesty's Government are of opinion that it 
might probably be sufficient that each Government should appoint a 
naval officer of scientific attainments and of conciliatory character, 
and that those officers should be directed to meet at a specified time 
and place, and should proceed in concert to lay down the above- 
mentioned portion of the boundary line. 

" The first operation of these officers would be to determine with 
accuracy the point at which the 49th parallel of latitude strikes the 
eastern shore of the Gulf of Georgia, and to mark that point by a 
substantial monument. From that point they would have to carry 
the line along the 49th parallel of latitude, to the centre of the 
channel between Vancouver Island and the Continent; and this 
point, as it probably cannot be marked by any object to be perman- 
ently on the spot, should be ascertained by the intersection of the 
cross-bearings of natural or artificial landmarks. 

"The two officers would then have to carry on the line down the 
centre of the channel, and down the centre of the Straits of Fuca to 
the ocean. Arid this water-line must, as it would seem, be deter- 
mined also by a series of. points, to be ascertained by the intersection 
of cross-bearings. 

"But in regard to this portion of the boundary line, a preliminary 
question arises, which turns upon the interpretation of the treaty, 
rather than upon the result of local observation and survey. The 
convention of the 15th of June, 1846, declares that the line shall 
be drawn through the middle of the 'channel' which separates the 
Continent from Vancouver Island; and upon this may be asked, what 
the word 'channel' was intended to mean? 

"Generally the word 'channel,' when employed in treaties, means 
a deep and navigable channel. In the present case, it is believed that 


only one channel, that, namely, which was laid down by Vancouver 
in his chart has in. this part of the gulf, been hitherto surveyed and 
used ; and it seems natural to suppose that the negotiators of the 
Oregon convention, in employing the word ' channel/ had that par- 
ticular channel in view. 

" If this construction be mutually adopted, no preliminary difficulty 
will exis*-, and the commissioners will only have to ascertain the 
course of the line along the middle of that channel, and along the 
middle of the Straits of Fuca down to the sea. 

" It is indeed to be wished that this arrangement should be agreed 
upon by the two governments, because otherwise much time might 
be wasted in surveying the various intricate channels formed by 
the numerous islets which lie between Vancouver Island and the 
mainland, and some difficulty might arise in deciding which of those 
channels ought to be adopted for the dividing boundary. 

" The main channel, marked in Vancouver's map, is indeed some- 
what nearer to the Continent than to Vancouver Island, and its 
adoption would leave on the British side of the line rather more of 
those small islets with which that part of the gulf is studded than 
would remain on the United States side. But these islets are of 
little or no value, and the only large and valuable island belonging 
to the group namely, that called Whidbey's would of course belong 
to the United States. 

" This question being, as I have already said, one of interpretation 
rather than of local observation, it ought, in the opinion of her 
Majesty's Government, to be determined before the commissioners 
go out, which cannot be earlier than spring next year." 

A FAIR PROPOSITION. -A draft copy of the instructions proposed 
by Great Britain to be given to the commissioners about to be 
appointed, was enclosed along with the foregoing letter. They 
accorded with the letter in every particular. It says : "That part 
of the channel of the Gulf of Georgia, which lies nearly midway 
between the 48th and 49th parallels of north latitude, appearing by 
Vancouver's chart to be obstructed by numerous islands, which seem 
to be separated from each other by small and intricate channels, as 
yet unexplored ; it has, therefore, been mutually determined between 
the Governments of Great Britain and the United States, in order to 
avoid the difficulties which would probably attend the explorations 
of all those channels, that the line of boundary shall be drawn along 
the middle of the wide channel to the east of those islands, which is 
laid down by Vancouver and marked with soundings as the channel 
which had been explored and used by the officers under his command. 
You will find the line thus described traced in red, in the copy of 
Vancouver's chart hereunto annexed. It must accordingly be left to 


the discretion of the commissioners to connect that part of the line r 
which, being drawn through that portion of the gulf free from islands, 
must pass exactly half way between Vancouver Island and the main; 
but the slight deviations of the boundary from 'the accurate midway 
which may for some short distance be required for this purpose cannot 
be of any material importance to either party. >J 

DELAYED UNTIL 1856. The instructions given above should be 
looked upon as most fair, and shows that the British Government 
was willing to do everything possible to settle fairly the boundary 
question. Tt was delayed, however, until the year 1856, on the 
pretext that the legislature of the United States had not appro- 
priated the sum necessary to defray the expenses of the work required 
to mark out the boundaries. 

the Oregon Treaty d d not at the time affect the general business of 
the Hudson Bay Company, which was then in a most flourishing 
condition. The fur trade had begun to fall off to the south of the 
Columbia River, owing to the influx of settlers. The natives in that 
direction were becoming somewhat dangerous. They were imbued 
with a dislike to the "Boston men," as they termed the United 
States people, but continued to have confidence in the Hudson Bay 
Company's men, whom they termed "King George men." The Russian 
trade was increasing. Along the coast and in the interior of the 
vast domain, untouched by the treaty, everything went on as usual. 

FLOURISHING AT VICTORIA. Under Finlayson's careful manage- 
ment the new fort at Victoria was giving an excellent account of 
itself. In little more than three years after its commencement, 
there were 160 acres of land under cultivation, on which were 
grown wheat, oats, potatoes, carrots, turnips, and other vegetables. 
The natives became well disposed and turned in to assist to clear 
land and perform agricultural work. They were paid according to. 
their work, at the same rate as white laborers. Two extensive 
dairies, each having seventy cows, were established at the new fort. 
The cows yielded during the season seventy pounds of butter each. 

EXCELLENT CROPS. It is recorded that "in 1847, on the flat where 
now run the most prominent business streets, where stand the banks, 
the post office, and the principal business houses, three hundred acres 
were cleared and under cultivation. The land was rich, producing 
tine pease and potatoes, and of wheat forty bushels to the acre. The 
most of the produce was sent to Sitka. Five thousand bushels of 


wheat, and large quantities of beef and mutton were shipped from 
Victoria harbor that year in two Russian vessels. Payment for this 
produce was made with bills of exchange on St. Petersburg. A 
portion of the cargo of those two Russian vessels was brought from 
Fort Langley in small boats. 

artist and painter, visited this section of the country in 1846-47. 
Mr. Kane had studied art in Europe, and returned to Canada with 
the determination to devote his time and talents to the completion 
of a series of paintings illustrative of Indian life and character. 
After an interview on the subject with Sir George Simpson, governor 
of the Hudson Bay Company, who entered cordially into the project, 
and gave directions to the Company's officers to facilitate the artist's 
movements in every way, he set out from Toronto in May, 1846, his 
design being, whenever an opportunity offered, to make portraits 
of the principal chiefs in their native dress, and characteristically 
to represent on canvas the Indian tribes and scenery of the almost 
unknown country. 

On reaching Lake Superior, Mr. Kane joined a brigade of the 
Hudson Bay Company, and by way of the Red River settlement, he 
passed to Lake Winnipeg, and by the Saskatchewan River to 
Edmonton. Early in October he left Edmonton, passing by way of 
Fort Assiniboine to Jasper House, thence he crossed the mountains 
by the Athabaska Pass, reaching the Columbia River down which he 
made a rapid voyage of fifteen days to Fort Vancouver, where he 
arrived on the 8th of December. In a volume published in 1859, 
entitled ; ' Wanderings of an Artist among the Indians of North 
America, from Canada to Vancouver Island and Oregon," it is 
mentioned that Fort Vancouver, on his visit, contained two chief 
factors, ten clerks and two hundred voyageurs, and that the fort was 
further enlivened by the presence of H. M. S. Modeste, which had 
been on the station for two years. 

PAUL KANE'S WANDERINGS. The artist remained at Fort Van- 
couver until the beginning of January, when he proceeded southward 
some distance up the Williamette. He then found his way northward 
to Puget Sound and Vancouver Island. Here among various Indian 
tribes, he spent the summer of 1847. In the autumn he returned by 
the River Columbia, and reached Edmonton in December, meeting 
with great hardship and much suffering on the journey, owing to the 
lateness of the season. At Cumberland House he mefc Sir John 


Richardson and Dr. Rae on their way to Mackenzie River in search 
of Sir John Franklin. He reached Toronto, October, 1848. Mr. 
Sandford Fleming states, in a paper read before the Royal Society of 
Canada, 1889, that some of Mr. Kane's paintings are to be seen at the 
Speaker's residence in the House of Commons, Ottawa ; the greater 
number of them are in the private collection of Senator Allan, Toronto. 
DR. McLouGHLiN RETIRES. James Douglas was then the chief 
factor of the entire territory west of the Rocky Mountains. Dr. 
McLoughlin had retired from the service in 1845, and with his 
family went to Oregon city to reside. His wife was the widow of 
Alexander McKay, already referred to as being the associate of 
Alexander Mackenzie in his exploratory trip to the Pacific coast in 
1793, and who lost his life in the massacre on board the Tonquin in 
1811. The new fort was found to be most convenient. It drew 
trade from all directions. Preparations were under way for removing 
headquarters from Fort Vancouver to Fort Victoria, as all the forts 
and trading-posts and farms south of latitude forty-nine and north of the 
boundary line must, under the treaty, be abandoned and transferred. 
HUDSON BAY COMPANY INDEMNIFIED. This only caused a certain 
amount of inconvenience to the Company, but not much actual loss, 
as their possessory rights were assessed and paid for in full by the 
United States Government, and the use of the illimitable north 
remained with them as before. New channels of communication 
with the interior, however, were required to connect with Fort 
Victoria instead of the Columbia, whch would be of no service south 
of the boundary after the business of the Company was withdrawn. 

A ROAD SURVEY. To open up the country 
by way of Fort Langley and the Fraser 
River, the work of exploration was at once 
commenced. Early in 1846, Mr. A. C. 
Anderson, who then had charge of Fort 
Alexandria (the next fort on the Fraser north 
of Langley), set out with five men to survey 
the country from Fort Kamloops to Fort 
Langley. His downward journey was not 
very successful ; but he was more fortunate 
A. c. ANDBRSON. on nis return, and secured a route which 

was adopted from Langley by the way of the 

Quequealla River (at the mouth of which the town of Hope now 
stands) and Lake Nicola to Kamloops, from whence the trails to the 


interior were tolerably well known. He made another survey in 
1847, but without further success ; his route of the previous year 
afterwards became, in the main, the waggon-road to the south-eastern 

NATIVES OPPOSED TO NEW ROUTE. Although not openly displayed, 
Anderson's explorations met with a considerable amount of hostility 
from the Indians ; but their attempts to misguide and mislead him 
were not sufficient to overcome his determination to succeed, and, 
assisted as he was by the fidelity of the native servants by whom he 
was accompanied, he was enabled to defeat their plans and secure the 
required route. Mr. Anderson was a most efficient officer, and 
performed his duties faithfully to the Company until 1854, when he 
retired from active service on two years' retiring furlough in addition 
to the usual retiring interest, which continued for seven years 

A NATIVE OF CALCUTTA. Seeing that Alex. Caulfield Anderson's 
services in New Caledonia refer to important topics and over an 
extended period, connected with the history of British Columbia, it 
may not be out of place to give a short sketch of his career. He was 
a native of Calcutta, educated in England. Having entered the 
Hudson Bay Company's service in 1831, at the age of seventeen, he 
reached Fort Vancouver in 1832. After assisting in the founding of 
the trading-posts at Milbank Sound and on the Stickeen, he was 
appointed in 1835 to Mr. Ogden's district of New Caledonia, arriving 
at Fort George in September. He was then despatched with a party 
by way of Yellow Head Pass to Jasper House to meet the Columbia 
brigade, and bring back goods for the New Caledonia district. Two 
months afterwards he was appointed to the charge of Fort Alex- 
andria on the lower end of the Fraser River, his first independent 

IN THE AUTUMN of 1839 he was removed to Fort George, and in the 
spring of 1840, accompanied the outgoing brigade to Fort Vancouver. 
In the summer of the same year he was appointed to the charge of 
Fort Nisqually. In the autumn of 1841, Mr. Anderson left Nisqually 
and passed the winter at Fort Vancouver. Next spring he went with 
the express to York Factory, returned in October to Fort Alexandria, 
where he again took charge and remained till 1848, having meanwhile 
been promoted. In 1848 he succeeded Chief Factor John Lees in the 
Colville district. He remained at Fort Colville, making annual trips 
with supplies and bringing out furs to Fort Langley until 1851, 


when he went to Fort Vancouver as assistant to Mr. Ballenden, and 
succeeded temporarily to the superintendency till 1854, when he 
retired from the Company's service. 

Soon after leaving the Company's service Mr. Anderson married 
Miss Birnie. In 1858, he went to Victoria to inquire into the gold 
discoveries. Governor Douglas urged him to accept office and bring^ 
his family from the country which he did, and resided at Rosebank, 
Saanich, near Victoria. In order to afford accommodation for the 
transport of goods to the newly discovered gold diggings, he recom- 
mended and directed the opening of a road from the head of Harrison. 
Lake by way of Lake Anderson, where Lillooet was afterward located. 
Five hundred miners were employed on the work, and the road then 
constructed was used for the transport of all supplies, until the road 
along the Fraser was made. 

HIGH DUTIES. It was found after the passing of the Oregon 
Treaty that the duties on foreign goods arriving at Fort Vancouver 
was so high that business could not be carried on there as usual. 
That although British subjects had the same rights as subjects of the 
United States to navigate the Columbia, that right did not permit 
the Hudson Bay Company to import goods except on payment of 
duty to the United States Customs for any merchandise which might 
be sold in Oregon. Orders were therefore sent to officers in charge of 
interior posts to open modes of communication from all points to 
Fort Langley, where supplies from headquarters would be sent to the 
several districts. Fort Victoria was to take the place of Fort 
Vancouver as a distributing and shipping post. 

These changes and the increased shipping added to the importance 
of Fort Victoria and Mr. Finlayson's duties. Farming operations in 
the neighborhood of the fort were carried on extensively. The war 
vessels and merchantmen were supplied with all the beef and vege- 
tables they required. Beef was sold to them at eight cents per 
pound, and flour and vegetables proportionately cheap. A grist and 
a saw mill were erected at the upper end of Esquimalt harbor to 
supply flour and lumber. 

SUPPLIES FOR CALIFORNIA. The discovery of gold in California in 
1848 also brought a large trade to Victoria. The miners discovered 
that supplies were plentiful at Victoria, whilst at San Francisco such 
goods as they most required were of limited supply and sold at 
extravagant prices ; hence a large number of them came to Victoria. 
Mr. Finlayson, in his autobiography, refers to this, and says: "Early 


in 1849 a vessel appeared in the harbor, the crew of which wore red 
flannel shirts. When they landed we took them to be pirates. I 
ordered the men to the guns, manned the bastions and made ready 
for defence. A few of the men approached the gate and informed 
me they were peaceable traders, come from San Francisco with gold 
which they would give in exchange for goods, as this was, they were 
told, the only station on the northern coast where they could get the 
goods they wanted. 

GOLD NUGGETS. " Having satisfied myself that they were what 
they represented themselves to be, I gave them permission to enter. 
They informed me that the previous year gold had been discovered 
in California in large quantities, and that they had brought nuggets 
to give for goods. They produced several of these, the value of which, 
at first sight, I felt doubtful, but brought one of them over to the 
blacksmith's shop and asked him and his assistant to hammer it on 
the anvil. This they did, and flattened it out satisfactorily. I next 
referred to rny book on minerals,, and concluded that the specimens 
were genuine. I then offered them $11.00 per ounce for their gold, 
which they took without a murmur. I then mentioned my prices, 
to which they did not object. I felt somewhat doubtful, but con- 
cluded to accept the gold, and the trade went on. They took in 
exchange such goods as were not often required in our trade old 
iron pots, sea boots, blankets, baize, etc., etc., for which I received 
satisfactory prices. A considerable sum was thus traded for the 
nuggets ; but being doubtful as to the value I placed on the gold, 
I despatched a boat with a crew of eight men to Puget Sound and 
thence to the head depot at Vancouver, with specimens of my trade, 
and asking whether I was right or wrong. The answer was, that I 
was right, and that more goods would be sent me to carry on the 
trade. Afterwards several other vessels came with the same object 
and more gold. The effect was that soon our operations became 
considerably disarranged by numbers of our men leaving us for the 
California diggings, including the sailors from our ships. We had 
to increase their pay to induce them to remain, and had to employ 
Indians to replace the sailors on the ships and the laborers on 

tinues : "The same year, 1849, the late Sir James Douglas, then 
Chief Factor Douglas, removed with his family from the depot on the 
Columbia River to this place, as by this time the principal business 


of the department was carried on here. I was relieved of the 
onerous duties I had to perform since the building of the fort. Mr. 
Douglas having taken the superintendence in hand, I was placed in 
the office as head accountant, which I held until the year 1862." 

FIRST NOTICE RECEIVED. Mr. A. C. Anderson, writing, says: "It 
was at Fort Colville, in 1848, that [ first got notice of the discovery 
of gold in California, in a private letter from Mr. Douglas, who had 
just returned from a trip to the Sandwich Islands. Little excite- 
ment, however, arose from this communication on the part of anyone ; 
and, in fact, Mr. Douglas himself seemed half incredulous of the 
report. A few months, however, served to dissipate this belief, and 
before the autumn of 1849, the whole country was ablaze. I myself 
felt fearful, on my return from Langley, in August of that year, lest 
every man should leave me. By prudent npanagement, however, and 
possessing, I flatter myself, the confidence of my men, I contrived to 
confirm them in their allegiance, and retained their services until 
their contracts were fully expired, a period of some two years. In 
this respect I was exceptionally fortunate, for while my men, some 
thirty in number, adhered to me faithfully, the other ports lower 
down the river, including Fort Vancouver, in which about one 
hundred and fifty men had been stationed, were almost deserted, and 
Indian laborers were hired to supply the deficiency. 

GREAT EXCITEMENT. " It is almost impossible to realize to the 
mind the intense excitement which at times prevailed. Gold appeared 
to be almost, as it were, a drug on the market, and more than one of 
the French-Canadian servants who had left Vancouver under the 
circumstances mentioned, returned the following spring with accumu- 
lations varying from $30,000 to $ 40.000. It is needless, however, to 
add that the large amounts of treasure thus collected with so much 
facility, united with the habits of extravagance which the unexpected 
possession of wealth engendered, speedily disappeared. The men 
who had thus dissipated their possessions, sanguine of their capacity 
to replace them with equal facility as before, returned to California 
enly to find that the field of their operations was fully occupied by 
others, who in the meantime had flocked in, and that their chance 
was gone.'' 

COAL DISCOVERED. Another important discovery was brought 
prominently forward on Vancouver Island in 1849. It is related 
that in December of that year, Joseph W. Mackay, while engaged in 
the Company's office in Fort Victoria, was called aside by the foreman 


of the blacksmith's shop, who informed him that an old Nanaimo 
chief, from the vicinity of what was then called Protection Island, 
had entered the shop a short time previous to have his gun repaired. 
Whilst waiting and watching operations, he noticed the men replen- 
ishing the fire with coal. Picking up some of the lumps he examined 
them closely, and finally remarked that there was plenty of such stone 
where he lived. Proceeding to the shop, Mackay entered into con- 
versation with the Indian, who repeated what he had said to the 
blacksmith, giving further particulars with more exactness. Mackay 
then said if he would bring him some pieces of the stuff, he should 
have a bottle of rum and his gun repaired free. The offer was 

TESTED AT THE FORGE. " The Indian departed, and as nothing 
further was heard of the matter for some time, it was supposed the 
old chief had forgotten his promise. But not so. He had been laid 
up with illness during winter. One day early in April he appeared 
in Victoria with his canoe well loaded with coal. It was tested at 
the forge by the smith and pronounced of excellent quality. Mackay 
fulfilled his promise by presenting the bottle of rum to the trusty old 
chieftain. A prospecting party was at once fitted out, and Mackay, 
placing himself at the head of it, landed near where the city of 
Nanaimo now stands. On his return to Victoria, Mackay made a 
favorable report. It was forthwith determined to turn to practical 
account this new discovery, but owing to other business the mine 
was neglected for the time being." 

FORTS LANGLEY AND YALE. Fort Langley was the only station 
occupied by white men on the Fraser, below Fort Alexandria, a dis- 
tance of about three hundred miles, until the establishment of Fort 
Yale in 1848. It was so named after James Murray Yale, then in 
charge of Fort Langley, who entered the Company's service in 1815, 
when a boy, and who in after life became one of their best officers. 
The new fort was erected to facilitate the transfer of supplies and 
furs over the new route about to be opened, connecting the seaboard 
with the interior east and north. The difficulties experienced on the 
first trip to and from Fort Yale, determined Douglas to establish 
another on the east bank of the Fraser, a short distance below Yale 
at the mouth of the Coquihalla River, to be named Hope. 

A DISASTROUS TRIP. The first party on the new road to Yale 
consisted of three brigades, namely, one from New Caledonia, 
Thompson River and Colville, respectively. After due preparation 


they set out with fifty men and four hundred horses, under the 
command of Donald Manson, of New Caledonia, he being the senior 
officer present Anderson, in charge of the Colville district, being 
second. On a new trail, with so many horses, many of them unbroken, 
the difficulties may be imagined. Fort Yale was reached. The horses 
were left there and the party quickly passed on to Langley. The return 
journey by the same route was, if possible, more disastrous than had 
been the downward trip. The merchandise carried back was more 
bulky and perishable than their former cargo, and not only a large 
percentage of the property was destroyed, but many of the horses 
were lost. 

THE OLD ROUTE CONDEMNED. Fort Hope was therefore built to 
be used for next year's brigade. The route partially explored in 
1846 was more fully examined, and with certain changes was recom- 
mended and adopted. The route over which they had just passed 
was condemned, as a portion of it had to pass through a host of 
barbarians, which congregate during the summer season . at the 
fisheries. The report of Donald Manson and John Tod, of Kamloops, 
said : " The risks of sacrificing both life and property (for it is 
needless to attempt to cloak the matter) under circumstances which 
neither courage nor precaution could avail against to resist surprise 
or guard against treachery, are alone sufficient to deter us from the 
attempt. The losses by theft, in themselves nowise contemptible, 
which have already taken place, are but the prelude to future 
depredations on a larger scale, should the present system of opera- 
tions be unfortunately persisted in depredations which, it is to be 
feared, will be difficult either to discover in time or to prevent 
effectually." The new route was adopted, and was followed until 
1860, when the government road was completed. 

FORT THOMPSON. At Kamloops was Fort Thompson, one of the 
oldest in New Caledonia, having been established in 1810 by David 
Thompson, it was always a place of importance, being the centre of 
the Thompson district, the rendezvous and point of transfer of the 
annual brigades passing north and south to and from Fort Vancouver, 
and latterly connecting with the seaboard by way of Langley and 
Victoria. It was at Fort Thompson, Bancroft in his peculiar manner 
relates, " that the Company's officer in command, Samuel Black, 
challenged his brother-scot and guest, David Douglas, the wandering 
botanist, to fight a duel, because the blunt visitor one night, while 
over his rum and dried salmon, had stigmatized the honorable fur 


traders as not possessing a soul above a beaver skin. But the 
enthusiastic pupil of Hooker preferred to fight another day, and so 
took his departure next morning unharmed, but only to meet his 
death shortly after by falling into a pit at the Hawaiian Islands 
while homeward bound. Likewise we may say, poor Black ! for it 
was but a short time after this chivalrous display of fidelity to his 
company, that is to say, during the winter of 1841-42 while residing 
at the old fort, that he was cruelly assassinated by the nephew of a 
f riendly neighboring chief named Wanquille, for having charmed his 
life away." 

JOHN TOD SMALL-POX. Attached to the fort were extensive stock- 
ades for horses, as in the neighborhood hundreds of fine horses were 
bred for the transport service. John Tod was the officer in charge at 
Kamloops in 1846. He was a man of good 
executive ability, and understood the Indian 
character thoroughly. At that time the 
warriors of the Shuswap tribes, to the num- 
ber of three hundred, combined to rob and 
murder the Company's men on the next trip. 
Tod, through a friendly chief, was made 
aware of the plot, but only after the savages 
had started' on their murderous expedition. 
He immediately started alone on horseback 
to their camp, and riding amongst them on 
his foaming steed, dropped his bridle reins, 
and holding aloft his rifle and pistols threw them on the ground. He 
then snatched the reins and made a few rapid peace evolutions on his 
well-trained mare, which the Indians understood, and coming to a 
sudden halt addressed the amazed savages in the most impressive 
manner, informing them of the near approach of small-pox, and that 
he had hastened with medicine to their assistance. The ruse was 
successful. In a few minutes Tod had conquered the three hundred 
warriors. They expressed great thankfulness, arid willingly submitted 
to be vaccinated. Fifty of the leaders were first selected, then other 
twenty, when the vaccine gave out. Tod used his tobacco knife as 
lancet. He afterwards admitted confidentially to a friend, that when 
the turn of certain noted rascals, whom he was satisfied were the 
head and front of the conspiracy, came, he did cut away more than 
was absolutely necessary, and did not perhaps feel that sympathy and 
solicitude for the comfort of his patients which he ought to have 


done; and if so be the arm he operated on the right arm might 
not wield a weapon for ten days or a fortnight, so much the better. 
So the "Shuswap conspiracy" ended. The friendly chief was 
rewarded with the horse he coveted. Tod was almost worshipped, 
for not a mart of the three hundred would 6ver after believe that he 
did not owe his life to Chief Trader Tod. 

HORSE FLESH USED. Commander R. C. Mayne, in his interesting 
work, " Four Years in British Columbia and Vancouver Island," 
mentions that he visited Fort Thompson in 1859, and went "to see 
the bands of horses driven in, and those past work selected for food. 
There were some two or three hundred horses of all sorts and ages at 
the station. Just outside the fort were two pens, or corrals as they 
called them, and into these the horses were driven. A few colts were 
chosen for breaking in, and then the old mares, whose breeding time 
was past, were selected and for it was upon horse-flesh principally 
that the people of the fort lived driven out to be killed, skinned and 
salted down." 



IMMIGRATION AND MINERS. No sooner had the boundary question 
been disposed of than the subject of colonization came forward. The 
tide of immigration was pouring into Oregon and miners into 
California. Something required to be done on the Britisli side of the 
line. English statesmen did not see why the Pacific coast should not 
be utilized as colonization ground for the surplus population of Great 
Britain. The idea was soon expressed in Parliament. A letter from 
the Company was addressed to Lord Grey, stating that their establish- 
ment was every year enlarging, and asking for a grant of land. 
Negotiations to obtain Vancouver continued until March, 1847, when 
Sir J. H. Pelly, Governor of the Hudson Bay Company in London, 
informed Earl Grey that the Company would " undertake the govern- 
ment and colonization of all the territories belonging to the Crown in. 
North America and receive a grant accordingly." 


PROPOSAL TO COLONIZE. This proposition was too extensive for 
the British Government, so the negotiations were suspended until 
1848, when a more moderate proposition was made, by which the 
Company offered to continue the management of the whole territory 
north of the 49th degree ; but was willing to accept Vancouver Island 
alone for colonization purposes, and that the Company would not 
expect any pecuniary advantage from colonizing the territory in 
question ; and that all moneys received for lands or minerals would 
be applied to purposes connected with the improvement of the country. 
The British Government had not as yet fully determined what should 
be done. The Company, however, had a charter prepared asking for 
a grant of the whole of Vancouver Island, which was laid before 

GLADSTONE IN OPPOSITION. The Earl of Lincoln in the House of 
Commons, 17th July, 1848, made an inquiry which had reference 
partly to the Company's powers at the Red River settlement. He 
was in favor of the grant to them of Vancouver Island. Mr. Glad- 
stone spoke against the measure, being of opinion that the corporation 
was not qualified for the undertaking. Mr. Howard believed it would 
be most unwise to confer the extensive powers proposed on a fur- 
trading Company ; yet as California had lately been ceded to the 
United States, it appeared to him a matter of the highest importance 
that a flourishing British colony should be established on the western 
American coast in order to balance the increased strength of the 
United States in that quarter. 

LORD JOHN RUSSELL explained that the Company already held 
exclusive privileges, which did not expire until 1859 ; that they now 
held these western lands by a crown grant dated 13th May, 1838, con- 
firming their possession for twenty-one years from that date ; that these 
privileges could not be taken from them without breach of principle, 
and that if colonization were delayed until the expiration of this term, 
squatters from the United States might step in and possess themselves 
of the island. The matter was referred to the Privy Council Com- 
mittee for Trade and Plantations, who on 4th September reported in 
favor of the grant of Vancouver Island to the Company to be vested 
in them for colonization purposes. 

CONDITION OF GRANT. The grant of Vancouver Island was made 
on the 13th January, 1849, to the Governor and Company of Adven- 
turers of England, trading into Hudson Bay, and their successors, 
with the royalties of its seas, and all mines belonging to it forever, 


subject only to the domination of the British Crown, and to the 
yearly rent of seven shillings payable on the first day of every year- 
They were to settle upon the island, within tive years, a colony of 
British subjects, and to dispose of land for the purposes of colonization 
at reasonable prices, retaining ten per cent, of all the moneys received 
from such source, as well as from coal or other minerals, and applying 
the remaining nine tenths toward public improvement upon the 
island. Such lands as might be necessary for a naval station and for 
other government establishments were to be reserved. The Company 
should, every two years, report to the Imperial Government the 
number of colonists settled in the island and the lands sold. If at 
the expiration of five years no settlement should have been made, the 
grant should be forfeited ; and if at the expiration of the Company's 
license of exclusive trade with the Indians in 1859, the Government 
should so elect, it might recover from the Company the island, on 
payment of such sums of money as had been actually expended by 
them in colonization ; that is to say, the Crown reserved the right 
to recall the grant at the end of five years should the Company, 
either from lack of ability or will, fail to colonize, and to buy it back 
at the end of ten years by the payment of whatever sum the Company 
should have in the meantime expended. Except during hostilities 
between Great Britain and any foreign power, the Company should 
defray all expenses of all civil and military establishments for the 
government and protection of the island. 

The Company, soon after the grant was made, issued a circular in 
which the following proposals were made. They stated they were 
ready to make grants of land to any emigrants from Great Britain or 
Ireland, or from any other part of her Majesty's dominions who 
might be desirous of settling "on the said island on the following 
conditions : 

1st. That no grant of land shall contain less than twenty acres. 

2nd. That purchasers of land shall pay to the Hudson Bay Com- 
pany, at their house in London, the sum of 1 per acre for the land 
sold to them to be held in free and common socage. 

3rd. That purchasers of land shall provide a passage to Vancouver 
Island for themselves and their families, if they have any ; or be 
provided with a passage (if they prefer it) on paying for the same at 
a reasonable rate. 

4th. That purchasers of larger quantities of land shall pay the same 
price per acre, namely, 1, and shall take out with them five single 
men or three married couples, for every hundred acres. 


5th. That all minerals wherever found shall belong to the Com- 
pany, who shall have the right of digging for the same, compensation 
being made to the owner of the soil for any injury done to the surface ; 
but that the said owner shall have the privilege of working for his 
own benefit any coal mine that may be had on his land, on payment 
of a royalty of two shillings and sixpence per ton. 

6lh. That the right of fishing proposed to be given to the Hudson 
Bay Company in the grant as printed in the parliamentary papers 
relative to Vancouver Island, having been relinquished, every 
freeholder will enjoy the right of fishing all sorts of fish in the seas, 
bays and inlets thereof, or surrounding the said island ; and that all 
the ports and harbors shall be open and free to them and to all 
nations either trading or seeking shelter therein. And as it is 
essential to the well-being of society that the means of religious 
instruction should be within the reach of every member of the com- 
munity, provision will be made for the establishment of places of 
worship, and for the maintenance of ministers of religion according to 
a plan, of which the following is the outline : 

(1.) The island is to be divided into districts of from five to ten 
square miles where it is practicable. 

(2.) A portion of land equal to one-eighth of the quantity sold to 
be set aside for the minister of religion. Thus, in a district of ten 
square miles, containing 6,400 acres, supposing 5,120 acres sold, the 
minister would be entitled to 640 acres, and the remaining 640 acres 
would be available for roads, site for church and churchyard, schools 
or other public purposes ; the land so reserved or its proceeds to be 
appropriated for these purposes in such manner as may appear 

(3.) With the view of enabling the ministers to bring their lands 
into cultivation, a free passage to be granted to such a number of 
persons as a settler having an equal quantity of land would be required 
to take out, the cost to be paid out of the fund held in trust for the 

(4.) The several apportionments for the purposes of religion to be 
conveyed to and to be held by the Governor-in-Council in trust for 
the parties appointed to perform the clerical duties of the respective 

The most material provisions of the commission and instructions to 
the governor for the government of the colony, are as follows : 

The governor is appointed by the Crown, with a council of seven 
members likewise so appointed. 

The governor is authorized to call assemblies, to be elected by the 
inhabitants holding twenty acres of freehold land. 

For this purpose it is left to the discretion of the governor to fix 
the number of representatives, and to divide the island into electoral 
districts if he shall think such division necessary. 

The governor will have the usual powers of proroguing or dissolving 
such assembly. 


Laws will be passed by the governor, council and assembly. 

The Legislature thus constituted will have full power to impose 
taxes and to regulate the affairs of the Island, and to modify its 
institutions subject to the usual control of the Crown. 

The Crown has already power under 1st and 2nd George IV., 
c. 66, to appoint Courts of Justices of the Peace in the Indian 
territories, of which Vancouver Island forms a part ; but as the 
jurisdiction of such courts is, by the 12th section of that Act, limited 
in civil cases not involving more than 200 in value, and in criminal 
cases to such as are not capital or transportable (all of which must be 
tried in Canada), it is intended to extend the jurisdiction created by 
the existing Act by the entire removal of those restrictions. 

The conditions of the grant were, that the Hudson Bay Company 
should pay a yearly rent of seven shillings, to be paid on the 1st day 
of January every year, and to hold Vancouver Island " in free and 
common socage" for that amount, subject to sundry provisoes, 
amongst which were specified : That they should colonize the island ; 
dispose of the lands at a reasonable price, except such as might be 
required for public purposes ; that all moneys received from the sale 
of such lands should (after deducting ten per cent, for the Company) 
be applied towards the colonization and improvement of the island ; 
make a report of the progress of settlement every two years to one of 
the principal Secretaries of State ; and if within the term of five 
years, or after the expiration of that term, the settlement of the island 
or other conditions of the grant were not fulfilled, the grant and 
license to trade with the Indians might be revoked, the Crown paying 
to the Company " the money expended by them in colonizing the 
Island and the value of their establishments, property and effects 
then being thereon." 




THE ISLAND having now been granted for colonization purposes, 
it was but reasonable to expect that there would be colonists. It 
should next be formed into a colony, and of necessity there must be 
a governor, who was to be appointed by the Imperial Government. 
Earl Grey wrote to Sir John Pelly, asking his opinion as to the proper 
person to be recommended for the office of governor. Sir John 
replied, recommending James Douglas, giving as his reasons that. 
Douglas was a man of property and a member of the board for the 
management of the Company's affairs west of the Rocky Mountains ; 
and that the appointment need not be permanent, but merely to fill 
in the time, until the colony could afford to pay a governor not 
in any way connected with the Company. 

Earl Grey did not accept Sir John Felly's 
recommendation, but appointed Richard 
Blanshard, who left England in 1849, and 
reached Victoria on the 10th of March, 
1850, via Panama. On landing, he pro- 
ceeded to the Company's fort. The officers, 
with James Douglas, together with the ser- 
vants of the Company, assembled in the 
large room. Captain Johnson, of the gov- 
ernment vessel Driver, which had conveyed 
Mr. Blanshard, also Captain Gordon, of the 
Cormorant, and officers, in full uniform, 
were present to hear read the commission and proclamation of the 
newly arrived governor. Three cheers were given, and Bancroft says : 
-"The newly installed governor of this wilderness then returned to 



the vessel, there being no government house, inn, or other lodgings 
upon the land to receive him." 

Ko SALARY WAS ATTACHED to the appointment. A thousand acres 
of land had been promised him before leaving London, which promise 
the Company construed to mean the use of one thousand acres, not 
a full title in fee simple. Bancroft enlarges oti the subject and says: 
"When he desired to know where his thousand acres of land were 
situated, a rocky eminence two or three miles away was pointed out 
to him, where a tract had been set apart for government use in the 
vicinity of where the government house stands. Thousands of pounds 
would be necessary to make the place respectably habitable, and it 
was no wonder the governor's heart should quail or that a huge 
disgust should take possession of him. He was further told that the 
promised thousand acres were intended for the use of the governor 
only while he was upon the island. He might select, subdue and 
beautify the tract for his successor, if it pleased him, but he could 
not sell or pocket the proceeds of it." 

The foregoing and following extracts illustrate how Bancroft 
moralizes for Governor Blanshard, and how he substitutes his 
pessimistic views for British Columbian history. He says : " The 
governor recognized no relation to the Hudson Bay Company other 
than that usually existing between ruler and subject. That the* 
Company held the contract for colonization, together with a monopoly 
of the soil, was nothing to him politically. It might affect appoint- 
ments and freedom of legislation, but it could not change the natural 
attitudes of crown governor, crown colony, and fur corporation. On 
the other hand, the Company cared nothing for the governor. As 
their noble friend, Lord Grey, had taken the trouble to appoint him, 
and the appointee had taken the trouble to come so far over the two 
great oceans, they would treat him politely, that is, if he would be 
humble and behave himself; but as for his governing them, that was 
simply ridiculous. He might issue all the mandates he pleased, but 
he would give little force to his authority without appeal to the chief 
factor, to Douglas, to the very man who had opposed him in office. 
. . . Meanwhile, time hung heavily on Blanshard's hands. Set 
down upon the bare rocks of this mist enveloped isle, with the only 
white people on it, those on whom he was dependent for everything, 
for subjects, for society, and for creature comforts, opposed to his 
rule in all their interests, he felt himself to be utterly powerless and 


forlorn, and could scarcely realize that he was governor, except by 
taking out his commission and reading it to himself occasionally." 

FORT RUPERT, on the north-east corner of Vancouver Island, was 
built in 1849. It had the usual stockade, strengthened on the inside 
with lateral beams. Round the interior ran a gallery, and at two 
opposite corners were flanking bastions mounting four 9-pounders. 
Within were the usual shops and buildings, while smaller stockades 
protected the garden and outhouses, Although established more as 
a protection in developing coal deposits which the Company undertook 
to develop there, it was also used as a trading-post, and partially took 
the place of Fort McLoughlin, at Milbank Sound, abandoned in 1843. 
Captain McNeill, of the Beaver, was placed in charge at Fort 
Rupert, with forty men, whites, half-breeds and Canadian Frenchmen, 
to construct the fort. George Blenkinsop was second in command. 

THE MUIR FAMILY arrived from Scotland this year, having been 
brought out by the Company as experienced coal miners. The shaft 
was sunk half a mile from the fort. The 
natives demanded pay for the land or its 
product, and when refused, surrounded the 
pit, threatening to kill all engaged should 
they persist in the robbery. Muir reported 
that Blenkinsop had caused much dissatisfac- 
tion amongst the miners, putting three in 
irons or in jail because they would not submit 
to his arbitrary orders and unreasonable 
regulations, which he endeavored to force 
upon them in the absence of McNeill. The 
result was that, except Muir and certain 

members of his family, the men all left for California, and as a 
consequence mining was discontinued. Prospects being better at 
Nanaimo, Muir and all his family and mining machinery proceeded 
to that place, in the spring of 1851. 

COAL MINING IN 1853. From the time that Mackay located the 
vein reported by the Indian in 1850, until Muir's arrival, the natives 
had taken out considerable coal from Newcastle Island. Mackay 
completed the fort at Nanaimo in 1852. The miners had now 
increased to such a number as not to be so readily disturbed by the 
Indians. The new industry was carried on by the Company with 
great energy. Before the end of 1 853, no less than two thousand 
tons were shipped, one-half of which was taken out with the 


assistance of the Indians. The Company's price at Nanaimo was 
then eleven dollars ; at San Francisco the coal was sold for twenty- 
eight dollars per ton. Nanaimo at this early date became the centre 
of the coal industry. 

VISIT TO FORT RUPERT. Governor Blanshard, shortly after his 
arrival at Victoria, made a trip to Fort Rupert and visited various 
points along the coast. Dr. John Sebastian Helmcken, who arrived 
by the ship Norman Morrison, Captain Wishart, in March, 1850, as 
medical officer to. the Company, was the first magistrate appointed in 
the colony. He was stationed at Fort Rupert, where the miners 
were behaving disorderly. The news of the California gold excitement 
had affected their usual good conduct. During the summer of 1850, 
Blenkinsop was placed in charge of the fort in McNeill's absence. 

NANAIMO, IN 1853. 

At this time there were about thirty individuals within the pickets, 
including the miners. In close proximity to the fort was a village of 
Indians, which sometimes numbered from two to three thousand. 

Dr. Helmcken was instructed by the governor to deal with the 
troublesome miners. They, however, refused to submit to the 
discipline necessary for the protection of the fort and its inhabitants 
from the surrounding tribes. The insubordination increased. Orders 
were issued by the governor to Dr. Helmcken to appoint special 
constables. Volunteers to act as constables were asked for. No one 
would serve against the others. They would not work for the 
Company any longer. 

The Beaver having arrived, reported the desertion of three of her 
sailors to the England, which had also arrived at Fort Rupert for 


coal. Dr. Helmcken, in his capacity as Justice of the Peace, went 
on board the England to inquire about the deserters. He learned 
that they had left the vessel, as soon as the Beaver was sighted, 
fearing arrest. To make matters worse, the Indians got intoxicating 
liquor from the England, and the men in the fort, hearing fresh news 
from the crew about the riches of California, were ready to join the 
miners to leave the establishment. The England having nearly 
completed loading, one day it was found that all the miners had left. 
The captain and crew of the England would not give any information 
of the absconding miners, although they were supposed to know their 

DESERTION OF SAILORS. This desertion was a great blow to the 
fort. The mining operations were brought to a close. To prevent 
other desertions, the gates of the fort were closed against egress or 
ingress. Dr. Helmcken and Blenkinsop had to keep close watch, as 
they did not know but the excited Indians would attack the fort or 
set it on fire. The England was ready to leave. Three men were 
reported as being on an island not a great distance off. An Indian 
chief, Whale, was sent to bring them back safely, and he would be 
rewarded. He returned without them. A few days afterwards, a 
rumor was abroad that three men had been murdered by the 
Newittees, a tribe living thirty miles from Fort Rupert. 

THE INTERPRETER of the fort was sent to inquire into the truth of 
the report. He returned next day, having seen the absconding 
miners near Newittee, from whom he learned that the murdered men 
were sailors. The miners had been waiting for the England to carry 
them away. The murdered bodies were found and buried at Fort 
Rupert. No charges so far had been made against the officers of the 
fort, neither had any effort been made to bring the murderers to 

COURT OF INQUIRY. In September, H,M.S. Daedalus^ Captain 
Wellesley, with Governor Blanshard on board, arrived at Fort 
Rupert. He held a court of inquiry in reference to the murdered 
sailors, and decided that Dr. Helmcken should go and demand the 
surrender of the murderers in the usual manner. The doctor there- 
fore set off with a half dozen Indians for Newittee. On entering the 
harbor he was met by four hundred Indians, painted black, and 
armed with muskets, spears, axes, and other weapons, and making all 
the hideous noises which they employ to strike terror into their 
opponents. Dr. Helmeken explained his mission to them from the 


canoe. The chief answered him that they would not and could not 
give up the murderers, but were willing to pay for the murdered men 
as many blankets, furs and other articles as might reasonably be 
demanded, this being their law in such cases. This was declined, 
and they were told they were bringing great misery on themselves 
by not acceding to the demand of King George's law. When Dr. 
Helmcken returned and made know* to Governor Blanshard and 
Captain Wellesley the decision of the Newittees, it was decided ta 
send boats and men to seize the murderers or to punish the tribes. 
The boats arrived only to find a deserted village. 

REWARDS OFFERED. Next year H.M.S. Daphne went north to 
punish the tribe, if they still refused to give up the murderers. On 
that occasion the natives were found in a new camp. They peremp- 
torily refused the demands of the captain, and therefore the crew 
prepared to attack them. The Indians fired, and wounded several of 
the sailors. The fire was returned. The Indians, however, fled to 
the thick woods near by, where they could not be followed. Only 
two Indians were killed in the skirmish. The village huts were then 
destroyed, and the Daphne left. Rewards were offered by Governor 
Blanshard for the delivery of the murderers. They were captured by 
the Indians and shot. The bodies were brought to Mr. Blenkinsop 
at Fort Rupert and buried beside the murdered sailors. Blenkinsop 
and Dr. Helmcken were exonerated from all blame in the affair. 

BLANSHARD DISSATISFIED. With the exception of the visits as 
mentioned, Governor Blanshard remained at Victoria until his depar- 
ture for England on September 1st, 1851. His time was occupied, 
and it may be said his administration consisted, in giving orders, 
which were disregarded, and writing despatches to the home Govern- 
ment in which he complained of the actions of the officers of the 
Hudson Bay Company. In April of 1851, he was notified by the 
managers of the Hudson Bay and Puget Sound Companies that they 
were about to occupy some land on the island, and that the sum of 
four thousand pounds sterling was to be expended on public buildings 
under the governor's direction, but subject to the approval of the 
Hudson Bay Company's management. The buildings were to be 
erected near the fort. 

A DIFFICULT POSITION. In reply to this, the governor wrote : 
" Unless the colony is intended to be merely an enlarged depot of the 
Hudson Bay Company, which I do not conceive was the intention of 
her Majesty's Government in making the grant of the island, it will. 


be a waste of public money to expend it in the way they indicate, as 
the buildings will then be surrounded by their reserves, which they 
are prepared neither to use nor sell." Governor Blanshard's position 
was a most anomalous and trying one, and it seems impossible that 
any man, however forcible or capable, could have done more than he 
did under the circumstances. The Company's officers and servants 
were the only white men in the colony, and they regarded the 
appointment of Blanshard as an attempted interference with their 
control of the island. This they were not supposed to submit to, and 
were not backward in making the fact uncomfortable to her Majesty's 

COLONIZATION PROSPECTUS. An effort at colonization was made by 
the Company. The ship Norman Morrison arrived in March, 1850, 
landing eighty emigrants, chiefly miners who had been engaged to 
work in the Company's mines, so the apparent attempt to induce 
settlement did not amount to anything. It cannot be said that the 
settlement of the island made reasonable progress ; nor is this to be 
wondered at, when the terms proposed to the settlers are looked at. 
According to the terms of their charter, the Company, immediately 
after the grant was confirmed, had issued a prospectus and advertised 
for colonists. In that prospectus, the price of land was fixed at one 
pound per acre, and for every hundred acres purchased at this price, 
the investor was obliged to bring, at his own expense, three families or 
six single persons. Only a person of considerable means was able to 
take advantage of the Company's offer. (For prospectus, see p. 186.) 

CALIFORNIA PRICES. At the same time land could be purchased in 
the United States territory, just across the Straits of Fuca, for one 
dollar an acre. Another objection was, the settler was completely 
in the power of the monopoly. All his supplies he had to buy from 
the Company's agents, at their prices, which were regulated by the 
California prices, and to the Company he had to look for a market 
for his produce. Besides, he came into competition with the Com- 
pany's traders, who were the largest farmers on the island. The 
result of all this was, what might have been expected, no colonization 
worth mentioning. 

PRETEXT FOR LEAVING. Of the unfortunate few actual settlers 
who did come out the first year, the greater number, after a very 
short time, left their lands to try the gold fields; those who remained 
were at continual war with the Company. A writer says : " To the 
wretched settler everything seemed to play into the hands of the 


monopoly, and the very fact that some abandoned their farms in 
despair and went to the gold fields, was given by the Company, and 
accepted by the Imperial Government, as a reasonable excuse for the 
failure* to colonize. The weakness of this pretext was apparent to 
all familiar with the facts, and it was well known that after the 
subsidence of the excitement in California, many who had left the 
mines would have been only too willing to take up land and settle 
an Vancouver Island under British rule, but were repelled by the 
exorbitant terms to which they were required to subscribe." 

The following petition will show the feeling of the settlers towards 
the Hudson Bay Company : 

^To his Excellency RICHARD BLANSHARD, Esquire, Governor of 
Vancouver Island: 

" MAY IT PLEASE YOUR EXCELLENCY, We, the undersigned inhab- 
itants of Vancouver Island, having learned with regret that your 
Excellency has resigned the government of this colony, and under- 
standing that the government has been committed to a chief factor 
of the Hudson Bay Company, cannot but express our unfeigned 
surprise and deep concern at such an appointment. The Hudson 
Bay Company being, as it is, a great trading body, must necessarily 
have interests clashing with those of independent colonists. Most 
matters of a political nature will cause a contest between the agents 
of the Company and the colonists. Many matters of a judicial nature 
will undoubtedly arise, in which the colonists and the Company, or 
its servants, will be contending parties, or the upper servants and the 
lower servants of the Company will be arrayed one against the 
other. We beg to express in the most emphatical and plainest 
manner our assurance that impartial decisions cannot be expected 
from a governor who is not only a member of the Company, sharing 
its profits, his share of such profits rising and falling as they rise and 
fall, but is also charged as their chief agent with the sole representa- 
tion of their trading interests in this island and the adjacent coasts. 

" Furthermore, thus situated the colony will have no security that 
its public funds will be duly disposed of for the benefit of the colony 
in general, and not turned aside in any degree to be applied to the 
private improvement of that tract of land held by them, or otherwise 
unduly employed. Under these circumstances, we beg to acquaint 
your Excellency with our deep sense of the absolute necessity there 
is, for the real good and welfare of the colony, that a council should 
be immediately appointed, in order to provide some security that. the 
interests of the Hudson Bay Company shall not be allowed to 
outweigh and ruin those of the colony in general. We, who join in 
expressing these sentiments to your Excellency, are unfortunately 
but a very small number, but we respectfully beg your Excellency to 
consider that we, and we alone, represent the interests of the island 


as a free and independent British colony, for we constitute the whole 
body of the independent settlers, all the other inhabitants being, in. 
some way or other, connected with and controlled by the Hudson Bay 
Company, as to be deprived of freedom of action in all matters 
relating to the public affairs of the colony, some indeed by their own 
confession, as may be proved if necessary. And we further allege 
our firm persuasion that the untoward influences to which we have 
adverted above are likely, if entirely unguarded against, not only to 
prevent any increase of free and independent colonists in the island, 
but positively to decrease their present numbers. 

"We therefore humbly request your Excellency to take into your 
gracious consideration the propriety of appointing a council before 
your Excellency's departure ; such being the most anxious and earnest 
desire of your Excellency's most obedient and humble servants, and 
her Majesty's most devoted and loyal subjects. 

" (Signed) James Yates, Robert Staines, James Cooper, Thomas 
Monroe, William MacDonald, James Sangster, John Muir, senior, 
William Fraser, Andrew Muir, John McGregor, John Muir, junior, 
Michael Muir, Robert Muir, Archibald Muir, Thomas Blenkhorn." 

on the above petition, nominated, on the 27th of August, James 
Douglas, Jarnes Cooper, and John Tod, a provisional council, 
subject to the confirmation of the Imperial Government, to act 
until the appointment of another governor. On the 18th o'f 
November, 1850, he had tendered his resignation, and asked for 
an immediate recall, on the grounds of ill-health, and also because 
his private fortune was " utterly insufficient for the mere cost of 
living here, so high have prices been run up by the Hudson Bay 
Company, and as there are no independent settlers, every requisite 
must be obtained from them." Earl Grey replied in a letter, dated 
3rd April 1 , 1851, which was not received until August, accepting 
Blanshard's resignation as governor of the colony. 

ONLY ONE LAND SALE. In a despatch sent to Earl Grey, in 
February, 1851, when referring to the progress of settlement in 
the colony, Governor Blanshard remarks that only one buna fide 
sale of land had been made, and that was to W. C. Grant. This 
gentleman was formerly a captain of the Second Dragoon Guards, 
Scots Greys. He had sold out his commission, and in 1849, brought 
out, at his own expense, eight colonists to Vancouver Island. The 
settlers came by the ship ffarpooneer, round Cape Horn. Captain 
Grant's route was via Panama. In a paper which he read before the 
London Geographical Society, Captain Grant corroborates the 
governor's statement, and says: t* In June, 1849, the first batch of 


colonists under this system arrived, and they consisted of eight men 
brought out by myself, and from that day to this not a single other 
iu dependent colonist has come out from the Old Country to settle in 
the island ; all the other individuals who have taken up land have 
been in the employ of the Company, and brought out to the country 
at its expense." 

CAPTAIN GRANT'S COLONY. The location chosen by Captain Grant 
for his colony was at Sooke Harbor, about twenty miles from Fort 
Victoria. He could not obtain a suitable place nearer the fort, on 
account of the Company's reserves and the lands set apart for the 
Puget Sound Agricultural Association. He resided on his property 
for two years, then leased it to Thomas Monroe and others of his men, 
and left for England. On being left alone, the men became careless 
and demoralized, so the captain on his return found the farm 
neglected, the land lying uncultivated, and the buildings greatly 
destroyed. He sold the property to the Muir family for what he 
could get for it, and left the country in disgust. 

A LARGE RESERVE. Referring to the Puget Sound Company's 
reserve, in a despatch Governor Blanshard says : 

"This tract, I am informed, contains nearly thirty square miles of the 
best part of the island, and they are already attempting to sell small 
lots to their own servants at greatly advanced rates. I consider this 
an extremely unfair proceeding. The terms of the grant expressly state 
that 'all lands shall be sold, except such as are reserved for public 
purposes,' and in consideration of the trouble and expense they may 
incur, the Hudson Bay Company are allowed the very handsome 
remuneration of ten per cent, on all sales they may effect and on all 
royalties. Not satisfied with this, they are grasping at the whole price 
of the land by monopolizing this vast district, making it a free gift 
to themselves and then selling it for their own profit, as they are 
attempting to do. In proof of this, f may mention that an English- 
man, of the name of Chancellor, arrived here from California a few 
weeks ago, with the intention of settling. The agent offered to sell 
him land on the ' Company's reserve,' which he declined, as he 
preferred another part of the island, but found so many difficulties 
thrown in the way that at Inst he pronounced the purchase 
impracticable, and is leaving the colony in disgust. He told me that 
he was the forerunner of a party of several British subjects at present 
in California, who were merely waiting for his report to decide 
whether they would settle in Vancouver Island or the United States." 

ANOTHER GRIEVANCE the governor makes the subject of a despatch 
of the 12th of February, in reference to an account presented to him 
for his approval, which he signed under protest. He said : 


" The account asserts that they have expended $2,736, of which 
$2, 1 30 are for goods paid to Indians to extinguish their title to the laud 
about Victoria and Sooke Harbors, the remainder also for goods paid to 
Indians for work done for the colony, provisions and ammunition for 
the same Indians. The receipts amount to $1,489, from which ten 
per cent, is to be deducted according to the charter of grant to the 
Hudson Bay Company, and consists entirely of royalties on coal for 
the last two years ; land sales there are none, as 1 have previously 
informed your Lordship. On examining the account, I found that 
for the goods paid to the Indians a price was charged three times as 
great as what they are in the habit of paying them at for their own 
work. Respecting this, and some inaccuracies I detected in the 
account, I addressed a letter to the agent. He corrected the errors, 
but made no alteration in tiie prices, and in the course of the 
conversation gave me to understand that they did not expect the 
charter of grant to be renewed at the expiration of the five years, 
January, 1854, and that they would be entitled to a reimbursement 
of their expenditure. At this rate they may continue for the next 
three years, paying away a few goods to Indians to extinguish their 
claims to the soil, and by attaching an ideal value to their goods, 
they will at the end of that time appear as creditors of the colony to 
an overwhelming amount, so that the foundation will be laid of a 
colonial debt, which will forever prove a ' burden.' " 

SAILED FOR ENGLAND. Nothing now remained for Governor Blan- 
shard to do on the island, so he took passage on the ship Daphne, 
for Panama, September 1st, 1851. He reached England in due time, 
and subsequently lived as a country gentleman, highly respected, 
on his estate near London, dividing his time between the country 
residence and the city mansion. Towards the end of his life his eye- 
sight failed, and before his death he became totally blind. He died, 
June 5th, 1894. His will, when proved July 3rd, showed his per- 
sonal estate valued at 130,000, or about $650,000. His real estate 
he left to his nephew, Colonel R. P. Davies. 

GOVERNOR DOUGLAS SWORN IN. The Provisional Council were soon 
relieved of their responsibility, for in the month of November, 1851, 
Chief Factor Douglas's commission arrived from England, and he was 
duly proclaimed and sworn in as governor of the colony of Vancouver 
Island. Governor Douglas had stipulated for a salary as governor, 
and was allowed 800 in addition to his former emoluments as chief 
factor of the Hudson Bay Company. The machinery of the Company 
was about as perfect as it well could be. Apart from the difficulty 
.of acting in a dual capacity, he was well fitted for the position. 


A COMPLIMENTARY NOTICE. A writer in "Pool's Queen Char- 
lotte Island," says of him : 

" The long services of Sir James Douglas to the Hudson Bay Com- 
pany, his intimate acquaintance with the various tribes of natives- 
and his knowledge of the requirements for developing the resources, 
of this, the most important colony of England in the Pacific, rendered 
him at that epoch eminently qualified to fulfil the duties of governor 
of our North-West American possessions. I have no oV>ject in 
bepraising him other than a desire to record my humble sense of his 
eminent merits. But such I know to be the verdict of all unbiased 
men who had the advantage of living under his wise and able 

of March, 1853, Governor Douglas acknowledges receipt of a despatch 
(No. 5), dated 27th September, 1852, with enclosures, and says, 
inter alia : 

"I have received her Majesty's commission as lieutenant-governor 
of Queen Charlotte Islands, with certain limited powers (dated 9th 
July, 1852), as therein described, and while I return thanks for this- 
high mark of confidence, which I shall endeavor to exercise for the 
honor and advantage of the Crown, I cannot forbear expressing a 
feeling of diffidence in my ability to discharge the duties of another 
office, involving a serious amount of labor and responsibility, while I 
have no assistance whatever in the administration of public affairs ; 
and while every function of the government, whether military, judicial, 
executive, or clerical, must be performed by me alone, a range of 
duties too extensive and dissimilar in their nature for my unaided 
strength to attend to with satisfaction to myself or advantage to the 
public. I will, however, most gladly do everything in my power 
to meet the views and wishes of her Majesty's Government ; trusting 
that you will forward, from time to time, such instructions as may be 
necessary for my guidance, and a selection of legal works containing 
the forms of process observed in the Yice- Admiralty Courts, and 
developing the principles on which their decisions are founded.'' 





IN 1853 ONLY 450 WHITE SETTLERS. Roderick Finlayson was 
nominated one of the Provisional Council, in the place of Douglas 
appointed governor. The work of governing the few settlers was 
not very arduous between the years 1851 arid 1856. It continued 
without very much friction until 1854, wheirthe first five years of the 
charter of the island would cease, provided settlement did not increase. 
To meet this difficulty several of the leading officers of the Company, 
including Douglas, Work, Tod, Tolmie, and Finlayson, purchased 
wild lands as convenient to the fort as possible, paying at the rate 
of one pound per acre. Outside settlers were dissatisfied and sent a 
petition in 1853 to the Imperial Parliament that the grant be not 
renewed to the Company. The settlers, in 1853, numbered 450 white 
men on the island, 300 of whom were at Victoria, 125 at Nanaimo, 
and 25 at Fort Rupert. Up to that time 19,807 acres of land had 
been applied for, 10,172 being for the Hudson Bay Company, 2,374 
for the Puget Sound Company, and the rest for private individuals. 

The increase of population now pointed to 
the necessity of a judicial functionary. Mr. 
DAVID CAMERON, of Nanaimo, was appointed 
Chief Justice of the colony salary. 100 per 
annum. The appointment was ratified by 
the home Government. The Chief Justice 
removed to Victoria in 1854. Previous to 
this there had been neither judiciary nor 
constabulary, excepting Dr. Helmcken, who 
was appointed first Justice of the Peace, in 
1850, bv Governor Blanshard. Chief Justice 


Cameron was superseded in 1858 by Mr. 

Needham, who, in 1859, was transferred to fill a similar position in 
the Island of Trinidad, West Indies. Mr. Justice Needham was 
knighted, and was succeeded by Sir Matthew B. Begbie, who continued 



to fill the position of Chief Justice of British Columbia until his 
death, which took place June llth, 1894, in the seventy-fifth year 
of his age. 

SIR MATTHEW was accorded a public funeral. The funeral service 
was conducted by the Rev. Mr. Jenns, in St. John's Church, where 
Sir Matthew had worshipped since 1860. 
The church was heavily draped and hand- 
somely decorated with flowers. A simple, 
black covering, relieved by a neat cross of 
passion flowers, marked the late Chief Jus- 
tice's seat in the choir. The pall-bearers were 
Hon. A. N. Richards, Q.C., D. R. Harris, 
Hon. J. S. Helmcken, M.D., Justices Crease, 
McCreight and Drake, Hon T. Davie, Q.C., 
Premier, Hon. J. H. Turner, and Hon. C. E. 
Pooley, Q.C. Chief mourners, Hon. P. 
O'Rielly and Dr. O. M. Jones. His Honor 
the Lieutenant-Governor and Admiral Stephenson occupied the 
carriage next to the chief mourners. Among the clergy present were 
his Lordship Bishop Perrin, who pronounced the benediction at the 
grave ; Revs. Canon Beanlands, Hewitson, Lipscome, and Rev. Mr. 
Norwood, of the Royal Arthur. 

An obituary notice says : " In the decease of Sir Matthew Baillie 
Begbie, not only a pioneer of pioneers is missing, but a figure and 
personality indissolubly and actively associated with the very begin- 
ning of this province, and its subsequent affairs and history up to the 
present time. Born in Edinburgh in 1819, Sir Matthew was the 
eldest son of Colonel T. S. Begbie of her Majesty's 44th Foot. St. 
Peter's College, Cambridge, was his Alma Mater, where he took the 
degree of B.A. in 1841, and that of M.A. three years later, in 1844, 
in which year he was called to the bar in Lincoln's Inn. He prac- 
tised his profession till 1858, when, owing to the ability he had 
displayed while a barrister, he received the appointment of judge of 
the court of the colony of Vancouver Island. British Columbia was 
then limited to the mainland. In August, 1866, the order-in-council 
uniting Vancouver Island to British Columbia was passed by the 
Imperial Government, but it was not proclaimed here till November 
17th, and simultaneously Mr. Begbie was created Chief Justice of 
the united colony, succeeding Mr. Justice (afterwards Sir Joseph) 
Needham. Under the provisions of the British North America Act, 
the practice and the constitution of the courts of law in British Col- 
umbia remained unchanged when this country entered the Canadian 
confederation in 1871, consequently Mr. Begbie continued in the 


office of Chief Justice, with the added honor of knighthood, which 
was conferred upon him for services which all acknowledged to have 
been of incalculable value to the country, its safety and well-being, 
and the performance of which at certain times involved serious 
personal danger and frequently the risk of his life. In the early days, 
until the arrival of Attorney-General Carey, Sir Matthew was also 
general adviser to Sir James Douglas, who was governor of both 
colonies. Sir Matthew was a bachelor." 

On the morning of the funeral, a large number of the members of 
the Victoria bar met in the court house to pass a resolution of 
condolence, which was adopted unanimously, as follows : 

"Resolved, That the members of the bar now assembled, on behalf 
of themselves and brethren throughout the Province, express their 
deep sorrow at the death of Sir Matthew Baillie Begbie, Knight, late 
the Chief Justice of British Columbia. 

"Throughout a long life he occupied a distinguished position as a 
lawyer ar*d a judge, and, although he reached an advanced age, he 
was, up to within a few weeks of his death, actively engaged in the 
performance of the duties pertaining to his high office. 

" His removal takes away one of the most prominent figures con- 
nected with the early history of this province, a man whose strong 
individuality and uprightness have left a lasting impress upon every 
branch of our judicial system. 

" At a period when firmness and discretion in the administration 
of justice were most needed, his wise and fearless action as a judge 
caused the law to be honored and obeyed in every quarter. 

" When the settlement of the country advanced, and the necessity 
for preventing lawless outbreaks became less frequent, he, as the 
Chief Justice of our Supreme Court, manifested an ability which 
showed that his intellectual faculties were as keen and active as his 
character was stable and commanding. 

"He was a man of scholarly attainments, and his versatility of 
talent evoked the admiration of all who came in contact with him. 

"As a judge, the tendency of his thought was eminently logical, 
his judgment was prompt and decisive, his integrity was never 

" His private life was in every way worthy of his public position. 
Plain and unassuming in manner, courteous and dignified in his 
speech, loyal to his companions, firm in his friendships, of a generous 
and sympathetic nature, unostentatiously good and silently charitable, 
he will be missed not only by his professional associates, but by many 
who knew him only as a kind and steadfast friend. 

" He has departed from us full of years and honors, but his memory 
will remain as that of one whose judicial career has been without 
stain, and whose personal worth has won our deepest respect and 


PETITION FROM SETTLERS. The petition referred to, from the- 
settlers, asked that the Company's grant should not be renewed at 
the expiration of the live years' term, and that the island be taken 
under the immediate management of the Imperial Government. It 
also asked that a governor and subordinate functionaries be appointed 
and paid by the British Government ; that courts of justice be 
established ; that the House of Assembly consist of nine members, to- 
be elected every three years; that the executive council be separated 
from the legislative ; that the elective franchise, then only enjoyed 
by persons holding twenty acres of land, be extended to include 
persons occupying houses, or paying rent to the extent of ten pounds 
per annum, or owning farm lands to the extent of ten pounds, or 
city property to the value of twenty pounds; and that the price of 
public lands be reduced to ten shillings per acre, payable in five 
annual instalments, interest at the rate of five per cent, per annum. 
LICENSES FOR REVENUE. Governor Douglas and his council of 
three framed the laws and executed them. The revenue of the colony 
was small, derived from the sales of lands and from houses licensed 
to sell spirituous liquor. The public-house keepers each, on payment 
of a license of $600 per annum, could deal in spirituous liquors 
with only one restriction they were not allowed to sell to 
Indians. The imposition of the tax on licensed houses was discussed 
in the council for some days before a decision was arrived at. 
Finally, the tax of $600 was levied on each of three retail dealers, 
and one was taken out by the Hudson Bay Company. Notwith- 
standing the settlers' petition against renew- 
ing the charter of the island to the Com- 
pany, it was renewed for another five years. 
The expenditure of the colony in 1855 was 
about $20,000. Up to the 19th of July, 
1855, the total amount received from land 
sales was 6,871 9s. 4d. The moneys re- 
ceived by the Hudson Bay Company were 
remitted to London. 

NEW LEGISLATURE. The time had now 
arrived when a legislature should be estab- 
lished in the colony of Vancouver Island in 
accordance with British law and practice. To accomplish this, Mr. 
Labouchere, Secretary of State for Britain, sent instructions on 28th 
February, 1856, to Governor Douglas, instructing him to at once call 



together, in accordance with the terms of his commission, a meeting 
of his council, which at the time consisted of John Tod, senior mem- 
ber, James Cooper, Roderick Finlayson and John Grant. The result 
was the issuing of a proclamation, on the IGtlj of June, 1856, dividing 
the island into four electoral districts, apportioning the number of 
representatives and appointing returning officers for each. The four 
districts were : Victoria, to be represented by three members, Andrew 
Muir, returning officer; Esquimalt and Metchosin, two members, 
H. W. 0. Margary, returning officer; Nanaimo, one member, C. E. 
Stewart, returning officer ; Sooke. one member, John Muir, jun., 
returning officer. 

WRITS CALLING A GENERAL ASSEMBLY of freeholders, for the purpose 
of electing members to serve in the Assembly, were made returnable 
on the 4th of August following. The qualification of members who 
might offer for election was placed at " ownership of freehold to the 
amount of 300 or more." The property qualification of voters 
remained as fixed in the governor's commission, namely, " twenty 
acres or more of freehold land." Governor Douglas wrote to the 
Secretary of State : " There will be some difficulty in finding properly 
qualified representatives, and I fear that our early attempts at legisla- 
tion will make a sorry figure, though at all events they will have the 
effect you contemplate of removing all doubts as to the validity of 
our local enactments." 

ELECTIONS WERE DULY HELD, according to the notices. In three 
of the districts, however, the electors were so few in number that the 
returns were little more than mere nominations. 

DR. HELMCKEN having been nominated for Esquimalt District, 
made the following speech, the first political speech made by the 
Doctor, and the first on record made in the colony. On rising, being 
received with hearty cheers, he said : 

"GENTLEMEN, I love to hear that British cheer once more. It is 
long, long since I listened to its music. That cheer has been the 
terror of many a foreign foe, in many a bloody fray ; that cheer has 
urged many a patriot onwards in the cause of freedom, and fostered 
efforts for his country's good ; that cheer, gentlemen, has taken away 
much of the diffidence I felt in placing myself before you. 

" Gentlemen, it is not an unusual thing to see me at Craigflower 
about this time of the day, but on this occasion the circumstances, as 
you have heard, are peculiar and not professional. I hold in my 
hand a paper signed by the most influential and respectable electors 
of this district, requesting that I would allow myself to be put in 


nomination as one of their members for the forthcoming Legislative 
Assembly, and, gentlemen, after reading this invitation, and finding 
it signed by at least one-half of the electors, I at once resolved to 
throw away all private reasons, all private interests, and devote me 
to my public duty. I determined to quit my hitherto quiet and 
unobtrusive life, to launch upon the stormy ocean of politics, and to 
brave the restless sea of public opinion. Whether I have been right 
in so doing, remains for you, electors of Esquimalt, to determine this 
day a day historical, a day glorious in the annals of this island ; a 
day bright as the sun that shines o'er our heads, and almost equally 
portentious in its course ; a day that the little ones, who now sur- 
round these hustings, will talk of, when we shall be no more ! 

"Gentlemen, there is another reason that had its weight. I was 
given to understand -and to our shame be it spoken that it was 
somewhat difficult to find or to get the requisite number of members 
to constitute the Assembly. 

"Gentlemen, this is not the way our forefathers struggled for 
freedom ; this is not the way in which our ancestors wrenched their 
rights from tyrant hands ; this is not the way by which liberty was 
advanced, even in our own day, but by more constitutional means. 

" Gentlemen, how disgraceful it would have been to Britons to 
have a document go home, stating it was impossible to constitute an 
Assembly in this colony ! When, indeed, would you have had the 
privilege granted again? In some measure to prevent such a dis- 
grace, and to keep the privileges so liberally, and at an unusually 
early period, bestowed by our Mother Country, I resolved to throw 
myself into the gap and try to save this, our infant country. 

" Electors of Esquimalt. yon have been, I am sorry to say, too 
lukewarm in this aH'air. Is it for you, Englishmen, to despise these 
rights so hardly gained by your forefathers, and almost sanctified by 
their blood 1 Is it for you, sons of ' Bonnie Scotland,' frae Maiden- 
kirk to ' John o' Groats,' I say, is it for you to despise these privi- 
leges, which your friends and countrymen deem their greatest honor, 
and are proud to own ? 

"Gentlemen, I trust you will pardon this digression a digression 
caused by the excitement of the occasion. 

" Gentlemen, I offer myself to you. I am, it is true, a little man, 
but with a head large enough, and 1 hope it contains sufficient sense 
to know what may be for your interest, what for your detriment. I 
am not vain or egotistic enough to suppose myself the best man, but 
such as I am, if you like, I'm yours. 

" It would be useless for me to enter upon any political disquisi- 
tion. I know not of any great political question requiring discussion ; 
we have no parties or party purposes to serve, but should you wish 
to ask any questions, or require any explanation, I shall be most 
happy to satisfy you to the best of my ability. 

"Electors of Esquimalt, I now ask your votes and suffrages; if 
you consider they may be entrusted to my keeping, I can only say 


that to such measures as may be brought forward calculated to 
advance your interest and the interest of the colony generally, I will 
give my hearty and undivided support ; but such measures as may 
be deemed to your detriment and injurious to your welfare, shall 
receive my strenuous and determined opposition. 

" Gentlemen, I have finished. I know not what powers have been 
granted to the Assembly, but hope we shall learn soon enough. If 
you think me worthy of your confidence, and elect me to serve you 
in this, the first parliament, I shall feel proud, and deem the honor 
great, but if you find any other candidate more to your taste, more 
fit, more talented or more disinterested, I will retire without chagrin, 
and not bear malice or ill-will against any man." 

There were five rival candidates in Victoria, who fiercely contested 
for the honor of being the first representatives in the new Assembly. 
The members returned for Victoria were J. D. Pemberton, Joseph 
Yates, and E. E. Langford. The others were returned by acclama- 
tion, viz. : John Muir, Sooke District ; John F. Kennedy, Nanaimo 
District; and Thomas Skinner and J. S. Helmcken, Esquimalt Dis- 
trict. The first Assembly met on the 12th of August, 1856. Dr. 
Helmcken was chosen Speaker. 

GOVERNOR DOUGLAS delivered the following address in a dignified 
and impressive manner : 

" Gentlemen of the Legislative Council and of the House of Assembly : 

"I congratulate you most sincerely on this memorable occasion 
the meeting in full convention of the General Assembly of Vancouver 
Island, an event fraught with consequences of the utmost importance 
to its present and future inhaV)itants, and remarkable as the first 
instance of representative institutions being granted in the infancy 
of a British colony. The history and actual position of this colony 
are marked by many other remarkable circumstances. Called into 
existence by an Act of the Supreme Government, immediately after 
the discovery of gold in California, it has maintained an arduous and 
incessant struggle with the disorganizing effects on labor of that 
discovery. Remote from every other British settlement, wiih its 
commerce trammelled, and met by restrictive duties on every side, 
its trade and resources remain undeveloped. Self-supporting, and 
defraying all the expenses of its own government, it presents a 
striking contrast to every other colony in the British empire, and, 
like the native pines of its storm-beaten promontories, it has acquired 
a slow but hardy growth. Its future growth must, under Providence, 
in a great measure depend on the intelligence, industry and enterprise 
of its inhabitants, and upon the legislative wisdom of this Assembly. 

"Gentlemen, I look forward with confidence and satisfaction to the 
aid and support which the executive power may in the future expect 


to derive from your local experience and knowledge of the wishes of 
the people and the wants of the country. I feel assured that as 
public men, holding a solemn and momentous trust, you will, as a 
governing principle, strive with one accord to promote the true and 
substantial interests of the country ; and that our legislative labors 
will be distinguished alike by prudence, temperance, and justice to 
all classes. 

"Gentlemen, I am happy to inform you that her Majesty's Gov- 
ernment continues to express the most lively interest in the progress 
and welfare of this colony. Negotiations are now pe'nding with the 
Government of the United States, which may probably terminate in 
an extension of the reciprocity treaty to Vancouver Island. To show 
the commercial advantages connected with that treaty, I will just 
mention that an impost of thirty pounds is levied on every hundred 
pounds of British produce which is now sent to San Francisco or to 
any other American port. The reciprocity treaty utterly abolishes 
these fearful imposts, and establishes a system of free trade in the 
produce of British colonies. The effects of that measure in develop- 
ing the trade and natural resources of the colony can, therefore, be 
hardly over-estimated. The coal, the timber, and the productive 
fisheries of Vancouver Island will assume a value before unknown, 
while every branch of trade will start into activity and become the 
means of pouring wealth into the country. So unbounded is the 
reliance which I place in the enterprise and intelligence possessed by 
the people of this colony, and in the advantages of their geographical 
position, that with equal rights and a fair field, I think they may 
enter into a successful competition with the people of any other 
-country. The extension of the reciprocity treaty to this island once 
gained, the interests of the colony will become inseparably connected 
with the principles of free trade, a system which I think it will be 
sound policy on our part to encourage. 

"Gentlemen, the colony has been again visited this year by a large 
party of northern Indians, and their presence has excited in our 
minds a not unreasonable degree of alarm. Through the blessing of 
God they have been kept from committing acts of open violence, and 
been quiet and orderly in their deportment ; yet the presence of large 
bodies of armed savages, who have never felt the restraining influ- 
ences of moral and religious training, and who are accustomed to 
follow the impulses of their own evil natures more than the dictation 
of reason or justice, gives rise to a feeling of insecurity which must 
exist as long as the colony remains without military^ protection. 
Her Majesty's Government, ever alive to the dangers which beset the 
colony, have arranged with the Lords Commissioners of the Admiralty 
that the President frigate should be sent to Vancouver Island, and 
the measure will, I have no doubt, be carried into effect without 
delay. I shall, nevertheless, continue to conciliate the good-will of 
the native Indian tribes by treating them with justice and forbear- 
.ance, and by rigidly protecting their civil and agrarian rights. Many 


cogent reasons of humanity and sound policy recommend that course 
to our attention, and I shall therefore rely upon your support in 
-carrying such measures into effect. We know, from our own expe- 
rience, that the friendship of the natives is at all times useful, while 
it is no less certain that their enmity may become more disastrous 
than any other calamity to which the colony is directly exposed. 

" Gentlemen of the House of Assembly, according to constitutional 
usage you must originate all money bills. It is therefore your special 
province to consider the ways and means of defraying the ordinary 
-expenses of the Government, either by levying a customs duty on 
imports, or by a system of direct taxation. The poverty of the 
country and the limited means of a population struggling against the 
pressure of numberless privations, must necessarily restrict the 
amount of taxation ; it should, therefore, b our constant study to 
'regulate the public expenditure according to the means of the country, 
and to live strictly within our income. The common error of running 
into speculative improvements, entailing debts upon the colony for a 
very uncertain advantage, should be carefully avoided. The demands 
upon the public revenue will, at present, chiefly arise from the 
improvement of the country, and providing for the education of the 
young, the erection of places for public worship, the defence of the 
country, and the administration of justice. 

"Gentlemen, I feel, in all its force, the responsibility now resting 
upon us. The interests and well-being of thousands yet unborn may 
be affected by our decisions, and they will reverence or condemn our 
acts according as they are found to influence, for good or evil, the 
events of the future. 

" Gentlemen of the House of Assembly, I have appointed Chief 
Justice Cameron to administer the oath of allegiance to the members 
of your House, and to receive your declarations of qualification ; you 
may then proceed to choose a Speaker and to appoint the officers 
necessary for the proper conduct of the business of the House. 

"JAMES DOUGLAS, Governor" 

THE SPEECH PROM THE THRONE was received with great attention. 
It referred, as will be seen, to the duties and responsibilities of the 
representatives ; to the prospective growth of the country, its geo- 
graphical position for the advantages of trade, etc. The place of one 
of the members for Victoria District, Mr. Langford, was declared 
vacant, on the ground of his not possessing property qualification. Mr. 
J. W. McKay was elected in his stead. The Assembly was in full 
working order by the 13th of November. On December 18th, a bill 
was passed granting 130 for the payment of the ordinary expenses 
of the House; and on the 9th of January, 1857, Governor Douglas 
writes to the Secretary of State : " I am now preparing a bill for 
imposing a customs duty on imports, as a means of meeting the 



ordinary expenses of the Government; but the subject must be- 
approached witli caution, as there is a very general feeling in both 
Council and Assembly against taxation in any form, and I am 
prepared to encounter much clamor and opposition in carrying so 
unpopular a measure through the House." 

A HAPPY FAMILY. Bancroft in his " History of British Columbia," 

No. 1, DR. HELMCKEN in 1894, and also No. 7 in 1856 ; No. 3, J. W. McKxv in 1894, and No. 5 
in 1856; No. 6, J. D. PEMBERTON ; No. 2, J. YATES ; No. 4, THOS. SKINNER, 1856. 

gives the following version: "They were, forsooth, a happy family, 
those fur-hunting legislators. The Douglas was all in all lord para- 
mount, dominator, imperial viceroy and fur-trader's factor-in-chief. 
Work. Finiayson and Tod, chief factor, chief trader, and ancient 
pensioner, respectively, of the Hudson Bay Company, comprised both 
secret council and house of lords. The 'seven wise men,' repre- 


senting the seven districts of the island, as a House of Assembly, 
were, in their several vocations, almost wholly of the monopoly. 
Helmcken, was staff doctor of the Company ; Pemberton, surveyor 
and ardent attache ; McKay, clerk of the Company ; Muir, former 
servant of the Company and father of the sheriff; Skinner, agent of 
the Puget Sound Agricultural Company ; Kennedy, a retired officer 
of the Company, appointed by the Governor and Council to represent 
the District of Nanaimo ; Yates, by the grace of the Company, mer- 
chant. D. Cameron, brother-in-law of the governor, was chief justice, 
and A. C. Anderson, retired chief trader, was collector of customs. 
Thus," continues Bancroft, "the Government of Vancouver Island 
continued until 1859, at which time terminated the second five years 
of the Hudson Bay Company's colonial domination. During his 
term of office, four distinct and often antagonistic interests looked to 
Douglas as their head ; namely, the Hudson Bay Company's fur 
trade, the colony of Vancouver Island, the Puget Sound Agricul- 
tural Company, and the Nanaimo Coal Company. It was impossible 
for him to do justice to each of these several trusts." 

INDIVIDUAL VIEWS. At this late date it would be difficult to say 
positively whether the seven new members were a " happy family." 
The result of the management of affairs in the colony during the 
time which had passed since Governor Douglas was appointed, does 
not indicate that because some of them were related to the governor, 
or had at one time been servants of the Company, unfitted them for 
the positions they were called upon to occupy. Several of those were 
evidently opposed to the Company, and frequently expressed their 
views and opinions fearlessly and openly against them. The governor 
had to fill a most difficult position. He had but few to choose from. 
Nearly every white man in the colony had been brought there by the 
Company. The Imperial Government must have been satisfied with 
his administration, when later they appointed him to the governor- 
ship of the mainland in addition to that of Vancouver Island. The 
formation of the new Assembly provided a way of raising revenue by 
taxation, by giving the parties taxed a voice in the matter of 
representation, which they did not formerly possess when licenses 
were placed on liquor dealers by the governor and his provisional 

REV. R. J. STAINES. One of the leading men who, after a time, 
opposed the Company, was the Rev. Robt. J. Staines, who came from 
England in 1849, as chaplain to the Company at Fort Victoria. He 


was accompanied by his wife, and together were to teach and keep a 
boarding school, etc. They taught the first school in Victoria. Mr. 
Finlayson speaking of them says : 

" At this time there were no streets, and the traffic cut up the 
thoroughfares so that everyone had to wear sea boots to wade through 
the mud and inire. It was my duty to receive the clergyman, which 
Ii did, but felt ashamed to see the lady come ashore. We had to lay 
planks through the mud in order to get them safely to the fort. They 
looked wonderingly at the bare walls of the building, and expressed 
deep surprise, stating that the Company in England had told them 
this and that, and had promised them such and such. 

" At all events the rooms were fitted up as best could be done. 
Mr. Staines had been guaranteed 340 a year for keeping a boarding 
school, and ,200 as chaplain. The services were carried on in the 
mess-room of the fort, which was made to serve for almost every 
purpose. Here also was erected a temporary pulpit, and prayers were 
held every Sunday. Staines purchased some land on the same condi- 
tions as others ; but he too became much dissatisfied with things, 
with Douglas and his administration as governor of the colony. 

" Mr. Staines quarrelled with the Company," Bancroft states, 
" accusing them of failure to keep their promises with him, more 
particularly in the matter of the prices of goods, which, he had been 
assured before leaving London, should be furnished him at servants' 
rates, that is, fifty per cent, on cost ; instead of which he was in reality 
charged, in some instances, two thousand per cent, profit. Hence he 
found it hard to ask a blessing on their mercenary souls ; and although 
obliged to do so twice or thrice every week, or forfeit his pay, 
inwardly he cursed them. But to the Company his blessing and his 
curse were one. It was out of regard for public sentiment, to which 
even the most powerful monopoly cannot afford to be wholly indif- 
ferent, that the fur-traders tolerated gospel ministers, rather than in 
the expectation that the arm of Omnipotence would be, through such 
means, swayed more especially in their interests. At an early day 
Mr. Staines joined the settlers' faction and waged open war on the 
Company, still continuing, however, his heavenly ministrations." 

DEATH OF MR. STAINES. Dissatisfaction reached such a pitch 
amongst the settlers that they resolved to send Mr. Staines to 
England (1853) to remonstrate with the Imperial authorities upon 
the injustice of continuing what they called, "so tyrannical a rule." 
It was arranged that he should leave by a certain vessel, which was 
to sail from Sooke at a given time, but not arriving as agreed the 
vessel left without him. Shortly afterwards another vessel was 
leaving Sooke for San Francisco, and on her Mr. Staines embarked. 
Scarcely, however, had the ship cleared the Straits of Fuca, off Cape 


Flattery, when a squall struck her, throwing her on her beam ends. 
Instantly she was water-logged and at the mercy of the waves. Most 
of the crew were at once swept overboard. Mr. Staines, who was 
below, remained there until he died. The only survivor of the wreck 
was rescued by a passing ship. He furnished particulars of the sad 
accident, but being greatly exhausted by fatigue and exposure, died 
soon after his rescue. 

REMINISCENCES. In " Reminiscences of 1850," a gentleman writing 
in 1887 refers to Mr. and Mrs. Staines in Fort Victoria. Describing 
14 Bachelor's Hall," he says : " It was a portion of a large story -and-a- 
half building, having a common room in the centre, and two rooms 
on each side, with a door opening into each. One of these rooms 
was occupied as the 'surgery/ the other two rooms by officers of the 
Company. The remainder of the building (it occupied the site of the 
now Bank of British Columbia) belonged to the chaplain and lady, 
Mr. and Mrs. Staines, who kept a boarding-school for young ladies 
therein and a splendid teacher and preceptress she was." Mrs. 
Staines, a short time after the death of Mr. Staines, returned to 

The same writer, in his reminiscences, also states that in March, 
1850, he happened to spend a day in Victoria when the ship Norman 
Morrison had arrived from England, bringing about eighty immigrants. 
Nearly the whole of them were under engagement to the Hudson 
Bay Company at 25 per annum. 

" On his arrival at the fort," the same writer says, " he was 
presented to Governor Blanshard, Chief Factor Douglas, Mr. Finlayson 
and some other gentlemen, and turned over to the care of Dr. A, 
Benson, with whom he had been acquainted in England a well 
clothed man known by the sobriquet, "commodore.' There he lived 
in ' Bachelor's Hall,' a gentleman, good and kind as ever ; but his 
garments ! he had on a pair of * sea-boots,' into one of which he had 
managed to put one leg with the pants inside, the other with the 
pants-leg outside. The other parts of his dress were equally 
conspicuous by their eccentricity. 

"' Ah,' said he, 'you laugh, but if you were to remain here a few 
months you would of necessity become the same ! ' He had a 
coffee-pot on the stove, and such a coffee pot ! The stove was square, 
made of sheet iron, bent in all directions by the heat. It had a cast 
iron door, and it was fed with large billets of wood, of which plenty 
existed in the 'Hall.' The stove looked mean and dilapidated, but 
it was found capital for roasting native oysters upon. 

" The ' surgery ' was consigned to me as my room pro tern. In it 
there was a ' cot ' slung to the ceiling, which I was to use as a 
' hammock.' The room was unique. It contained a gun case and a 
few shelves, with drugs in bottles or in paper in every direction. 
The tin lining of a 'packing case' served for a counter. C.iptain 


Grant, of Sooke, arrived in the evening and domiciled in Captain 
Nevin's room. Mackay and the doctor retired to theirs, and I turned 
into the hammock. I slept well that night, and was awakened in 
the morning by the loud ringing of a bell, and a concert proceeding 
from a host of curs these curs assembled under the bell at every 
meal and, looking up to it, howled the howling being taken up by 
some dogs in the Indian village opposite. 

" Benson called out : * Get up quickly ; that is the breakfast bell.' 

" I got up, and so did Captain Grant. Whilst dressing I heard 
the following dialogue : * Dear, oh dear, where is the soap ] Captain 
Grant, have you my soap 1 ' 

" 'Aye, aye,' was the response, * you shall have it directly.' 

"'Why, what has become of my razor 1 ? Grant, have you my 
razor 1 ' 

"'Yes; nearly finished; you can have it directly.' And he got 
it and shaved. Then I heard : c Where is my shirt 1 I shall be late 
for breakfast. Grant, have you taken my shirt 1 ' 

" ' I have, my dear fellow ; I want to appear at table decent.' 

" ' That is too bad, Grant ; it is the only clean shirt I have to put 

" ' Never mind, old fellow, put on your old one ; it will be clean 
enough. Mine has not been washed for I don't know how long ; 
more than a week anyhow. You can get yours washed, and Benson, 
send mine too, please.' 

" We all got to breakfast, and after returning, the following was 
said : ' Bless me ! where is my tobacco 1 I left half a case of 
" Cavendish" under the bed/ 

' ' Oh, yes,' says Grant, ' I took it, my good fellow, to pay my 
Indians with. We'll get some more soon ! ' 

"After having smoked a pipe of peace, all was made right, for 
Grant was a splendid fellow and every inch a gentleman he had 
been a captain in the ' Scotch Greys.' Benson now insisted on 
showing me the ' lions ' of Victoria. He put on his sea-boots, with 
legs of pants inside ; I had only my London-made, thin soled. His 
were dirty ; mine, nicely polished. He was cute ; I, a greenhorn : 
so the doctor ' practised ' a little on my verdancy. 

"The 'lions' of Victoria then were the fort and its contents. It 
had been built by Mr. Finlayson. The fort was nearly a quadrangle, 
about one hundred yards long and wide, with bastions at two corners, 
containing cannon. The whole was stockaded with cedar posts, about 
six or eight inches in diameter, and about fifteen feet in length. 
They had been brought from near 'Mount Douglas,' which was then 
called 'Cedar Hill'). There were inside about a dozen large, 
story and-a-half buildings, say 60 x 40, roofed with long and wide 
strips of cedar bark. The buildings were for the storage of goods, 
Indian trading-shop, and a large shop for general trade. It contained 
everything required. 

"The mess-room, off from which lived Mr. Douglas and family, was 


at the corner of (now) Fort and Government Streets. The 'counting- 
house' was near (now) Wharf Street. Mr. Finlayson occupied this 
post and lived there with his family. A belfry stood in the middle 
of the yard, and its bell tolled for meals, for deaths, for weddings, 
for church service, for fires, and sometimes for warnings. At meal 
time it was assisted by a chorus of curs. On Wharf Street, there 
existed a flagstaff, and near it a well, some eighty feet deep, but 
which contained very litt e water. The fort yard was muddy, and 
the side-walk to the stores consisted of two or three poles, along 
which Benson trudged, but off which my boots slipped every few 
steps ! So my boots and my pants were not a little muddy, and the 
wretch Benson laughed at me, saying, ' I told you so ! you'll soon be 
.like me ; if you remain here ! ' 

"For all this exertion, I saw nothing but 'furs' and stores. Not 
very many of the former, as they had been already packed, to be sent 
.home by the returning ship Gorman Morrison, Captain Wishart 
being her commander. As I could not very well get much muddier, 
we went outside the 'fort,' and there lay the Beaver, Captain Dodd 
in command, so clean, so nice, so spruce, with 'boarding nettings' 
all round, cannon on deck, muskets and cutlasses arranged in their 
proper places, beautiful cabins, and good furniture, with a trading 
place for Indians, who, I was told, were only allowed a few at a time 
on board, when on trade. She had a large crew active, robust, 
weather-beaten, jolly, good-tempered men fat, from not being over- 
worked ; some grey, some grizzled, some young ; the former had once 
been similar to the latter in 'the service.' 

" Outside the fort there were no houses, save, perhaps, a block 
cabin or two. Forest, more or less, existed from 'the ravine,' Johnson 
Street, to the north. The harbor was surrounded by tall pines, and 
its bowers bedecked with shrubs ; many of which were, at this early 
period, in blossom. Cultivated fields existed from Government Street 
to the public schools ; likewise across the bay, and I was informed 
the Company exported wheat to Sitka! There were barns up Fort 
Street (this ran through the centre of the fort) about where now is 
the site of the Mechanics' Institute ; and I think there I saw, a few 
days ago, a small shanty which existed then. It was covered with 
-cedar bark. 

" My friend Benson next took me to Beacon Hill. The weather 
wa-? lovely and warm, the sky bright, the mountains clear, and every- 
thing looked paradisiacal. There we rested, locked at 'Dutnall's 
fields,' and at the Beacon, which I in my ignorance thought a target. 
We then walked along the beach to near the entrance of Victoria 
harbor. Benson said, 'Now, I'll go back by a "short cut.'" The 
wretched man came to a swamp (Providence Pond, near Moffatt's). 
Says he, ' We cross somewhere about here; come on.' He walked along 
^ fallen tree; so did I not very well though. He jumped from hillock 
to hillock ; so did I. We both jumped to a fallen tree ; it sunk, and 
we went knee-deep into the water. He had ' sea-boots' on ; he looked 


at me, and laughed ' I told you so; you will soon be like me. You 
are pretty well seasoned now r so come along, for I have lost the 
track !' So we wallowed through this swamp, got out somewhere, got 
to the fort, I a wiser but not a sadder man. I had been ' introduced ' 
to 'roughing it' ; my cockney boots and trousers used up. 

" After making ourselves decent, for I was told that Mr. Douglas, 
was rather particular about this, the ' bell and the dogs' told us it 
was time for dinner, and to it, nothing loth, we went. The mess- 
room was more than thirty feet long by, say, twenty wide ; a large, 
open fire-place at one end, and large pieces of cord wood burning^ 
therein ; a clock on the wall ; a long table in the middle, covered 
with spotless linen; the knives and forks clean; decanters. bright r 
containing wine and so forth; the chairs of wood (Windsor), but 
everything European. I suppose there must have been more than 
twenty people in the room, when Mr. Douglas made his appearance 
a handsome specimen of nature's noblemen, tall, stout, broad- 
shouldered, muscular, with a grave, bronzed face, yet kindly withal. 
After the usual greetings he took the head of the table, Mr. Finlayson> 
the foot. 

" Captain Dodd, Captain Wishart, Captain Grant and myself were 
guests. There were also present, J. W. McKay, Charley Griffin,. 
Captain Sangster. and numerous others, whom I do not recollect at 
this moment. Grace having been said by Mr. Douglas (the chaplain 
did not dine at the mess, but all the other married officers did), on 
comes the soup, then the salmon, then the meats venison on thi& 
occasion, and ducks ; then the pies, and so forth ; and down they go 
into their proper receptacle, each one ready and willing to receive 
them. Having done justice to the dinner, and taken a glass 'to the 
Queen,' many of the junior members left, either to work or to smoke 
their pipes in their own quarters. We remained. The steward, a 
Kanaka (the cook was also a Kanaka, i <?., Sandwich Islander),, 
brought on tobacco and long clay pipes, of the kind called ' alderman/ 
Mr. Douglas took his pipe, which I noticed was beautifully colored, 
showing slow and careful smoking (the clerks used to like to get hold' 
of his colored pipes). Others took pipes, either from the heap or their 
pockets. Everybody appeared to smoke calmly and deliberately. 

"During the dinner there was conversation, Mr. Douglas taking 
the lead. Captain Wishart was asked to be careful of his men, as 
the gold fever was raging and the men deserting as often as they 
found an opportunity, giving great trouble and necessitating spies_ 
California was spoken about, which led to someone asking where 
Solomon got his gold from ; but no one could answer the conundrum. 
To change the conversation, perhaps, Mr. Douglas asked the doctor 
why so many of the Hudson Bay Company's officers were bald. His- 
answer was, ' pro pella cutem' 'they had sent their furs home,' at 
which some laughed ; but Mr. Douglas gravely said, ' Perhaps, having 
given us the poetry of the thing, you will give the prose the cause/" 
This rion-plussed the doctor, as it was an additional conundrum. 


"By the Norman Morrison, files of newspapers, and the four 
Reviews of latest dates that is to say, nearly six months old had 
come out, and Mr. Douglas commenced about some Scotch battles 
fought long ago. This brought out Dodd, an Englishman, well read 
and well educated, who derided the breechless vagabonds Johnny 
Cope got his share. Douglas and Dodd seemed to know how many 
men were engaged in each battle ; and all at once they tumbled into 
the battle of Waterloo the one claiming that the Scotch did best, 
the other that the English did most execution, while a third claimed 
that Scotch, English and Irish would have been beaten had it not 
been for Blucher and his host coming up, just in the nick of time, to 
save the lot. This question was not settled. 

" * OLD TOD ' was chaffed for having fired a salute four years after 
the victory, i.e., as soon as he heard of it. He was indignant, and 
contended it was less than three years. His post had been somewhere 
near the North Pole ! I was informed that no frivolous conversation 
was ever allowed at table, but that Mr. Douglas, as a rule, came 
primed with some intellectual and scientific subject, and thus he 
educated his clerks. All had to go to church every Sunday, the 
mess-room serving every purpose baptisms, marriages, funerals, 
councils, dances, theatricals, or other amusements and did not seem 
any the worse for it. 

"After dinner we went to see the Indian village. Benson just 
pointed out the bullet-holes in the pickets and bastions made by 
hostile Indians. ' But,' said he, ' don't be afraid, they are only 
dangerous when excited, and as a rule they don't get excited without 
cause given.' He procured a canoe, of which I felt dubious, but he 
taught my tiny feet how to get into it ; and so we arrived safely, 
after what I considered a dangerous passage. There must have been 
five or six hundred Indians. By far the greater, number had a 
blanket only for clothing ; but KING FREEZY had on a tall hat and a 
long coat, and considered himself somebody, as indeed he was, and 
friendly to the whites. He had a most remarkably flattened head 
indeed all the Indians had flattened heads and fearful foreheads, 
retreating backwards. We saw babies undergoing the process ; a 
pad and pressure being the instruments. They did not seem to 
suffer ; perhaps it made them good. The cradles were hung on a 
flexible pole, stuck in the ground at an acute angle, so a slight touch 
on the pole put the baby into an up and down motion. 

"In one house there were a number of people beating tom-toms 
and chanting. They had a sick child in the centre. The * medicine 
man ' was performing some incantations, such as sucking the child's 
skin and spitting upon it. The child, they said, had a devil I 
suggested he was standing alongside. Benson .said, ' No, he is the 
doctor, a man and a brother medico.' This was very interesting, but 
our time being precious, we looked at their ' woolly dogs,' and the 
dirt and filth, and proceeded to return in what seemed to me then 
our very frail and treacherous conveyance. By the bye, these ' woolly 


dogs ' seem to have become extinct. These Indians used to shear 
them, and make a sort of blanket out of the wool. Safely landed, on 
our way to Governor Blanshard's we saw many Indians walking 
about. Nearly every one had the same covering a blanket and dirt ; 
and we saw two examining each other's heads, looking for well, 
never mind, but they ate them ! 

" We found Governor Blanshard smoking a very thick pipe with a 
very long stem. He was a comparatively young man, of medium 
height, with aquiline, aristocratic features, set off by a large, military 
moustache. He had arrived only a few days previously, and had 
been riding. He said, * Benson, you told me all the trails led to the 
fort, but you did not tell me they all led away from it. Now, I got 
off the trail, to wander about, and 1 lost it ; but I found another, and 
it led away from the fort. 1 should not have been here now had I 
not turned my horse's head and tail as it is, I have lost my dinner.' 
He was a very intelligent and affable man. We left him with his 
pipe-stem still in his mouth. 

" It being now supper time, we went to the mess-room. The 
company was smaller, and after chatting around the fire, and smoking, 
of course, everyone went his own way, but most to the 'Hall.' After 
adjourning to the hall, a Frenchman came (all the men were French- 
Canadians), and said to the doctor, 'Pierre has a bad stomach-ache.' 
Doctor 'Bad stomach-ache, eh! Ah, eating too much! ah, yes, 
give him a tablespoonful of salts ! ' ' Oh/ said the man, ' but he is 
very bad!' Doctor 'Ah, hum, yes, very bad, eh? very bad, eh*? 
Then give him two spoonfuls of salts ! Oh, yes, that's the way to 
clean out the salt salmon.' 

" There were a good many in 'Bachelor's Hall' all young men. 
After awhile Captain Grant began 'to entertain the company.' He 
showed how to use the sword. He stuck the candle on the back of a 
chair, to snuff it with a sweep of the sword ; but I am bound to 
confess, he took off a good piece of the candle with it, and down it 
went. Again the candle was stuck up ; then he split it longitudinally, 
and this time splendidly. He wanted to ' cut ' a button off Benson's 
coat (he had none too many), but Benson said, ' Oh ! oh ! cut a 
button no, no; split or spit one too, ho! ho'' After awhile, the 
captain introduced the game, 'To escort Her Majesty to Windsor 
Castle.' All were to be cavalry; so down everybody went kangaroo 
fashion. Grant, being in command, took the lead ; and so we hopped 
around the room, and made considerable of a racket, in the midst of 
which some naughty school-girl overhead, possibly not being able to 
sleep, poured some water through a crack in the ceiling, right down 
upon the cavalry ! This put an end to ' the escort to Windsor/ 
Word was brought by a spy, that some of the men had a canoe and 
were about to depart to the other side, so off McKay went to look 
after them. This broke up the party, and away we went to bed ; and 
so ended a day in Victoria. 

"I stand to-day upon the same spot, but, oh! how changed. Of 


the twenty or thirty met before, but two or three answer to the call. 
Of the fields naught remains. The forest has been removed, and the 
bleak winds, unhindered now, rusli into what was then a genial, 
sheltered place. The Beaver remains, but, great Jove ! no more like 
the Beaver of former days than a coal barge is like a frigate. 
Mightier steamers float upon the harbor ; the Indians, once half a 
thousand, have disappeared; homes of the citizens occupy the fields; 
telegraph and telephone wires make the streets hideous ; there is great 
hurry and scurry, but I doubt whether there is more happiness and 
content now than was enjoyed by the few but hospitable and kind- 
hearted Hudson Bay Company's residents in 1850. Peace be with 
them their works live after them." [It may be that rather much 
space has been alloted to the " Reminiscences," yet they are interesting 
as being from the pen of one who yet lives in Victoria, and was an 
eye-witness of what he has described. ED.] 



THE MONOPOLY. Whether the Company's charter of lease of Van- 
couver Island should or should not be abrogated, was the next point 
to be decided. That colonization did not make as much progress as 
was expected by the Imperial Government was evident, and what had 
been accomplished was unsatisfactory. The Company's management 
were satisfied that the island could no longer be held strictly for fur- 
trading purposes ; indeed several of the largest shareholders were 
opposed to the renewal of the charter. They fortified themselves 
against loss in case the charter should be relinquished by stipulating 
that the outlay which the attempt to colonize the island had neces- 
sitated should be repaid in the event of its being given up to the 
Imperial Government. In the House of Commons there was a strong 
feeling against the Company's monopoly, and this, along with the 
dissatisfaction of the colonists, led to an inquiry. 

BEFORE THE BRITISH PARLIAMENT. When the subject was brought 
before the British Parliament in 1857, a select committee of nineteen 
members was appointed to consider the state of the British North 
American possessions which were under the administration of the 
Hudson Bay Company, over which they held fur-trading licenses. 


Notice of the appointment of this committee was sent to Sir Edmund 
Walker Head, then Governor-General of Canada, and Chief Justice- 
Draper was commissioned by the Canadian Parliament to take note 
of the proceedings. A committee was also appointed in Canada to 
investigate the matter. The House of Commons Committee held 
sittings for six months, and after examining twenty-four witnesses,, 
recommended that the Hudson Bay Company's lease of the island 
should terminate at the end of the current lease. The report was laid 
before Parliament in 1858, and the recommendations were adopted. 

THE COMMITTEE were composed of the following: Henry Labouchere, 
Chairman ; Messrs. Gladstone, Roebuck, Lowe, Grogan, Gregson, Fitz- 
william, Gurney, Herbert, Matheson, Blackburn, Christy, Kinnaird. 
Ellice, Viscounts Goclerich and Sandon, Sir John Pakington, and 
Lords Russell and Stanley (19). The witnesses examined were: John 
Ross, J. H. Lefoy, John Rae, Sir George Simpson, Win. Kernaghan,. 
C. W. W. Fitz william, Alexander Isbister, G. O. Corbett, Sir John 
Richardson, J. F. Crofton, Sir George Back, James Cooper, W. H. 
Draper, David Anderson, Joseph Maynard, A. R. Roche, David Herd, 
John Miles, John McLoughlin, Richard Blanshard, William C aid well, 
Richard King, James Tennant and Edward Ellice (24). Amongst 
the witnesses several were in favor of continuing the license system. 

JUST AT THIS TIME the gold excitement broke out at the Fraser 
River. Governor Douglas, as chief factor of the Hudson Bay Com- 
pany, was required, in their interest, to look after the mainland, over 
which the Company still held a lease, but which would soon expire, 
and, as the nearest representative of the British Crown, it was his 
duty to look after the interests of her Majesty the Queen. Results 
show that he was " the right man in the right place," and that under 
the extraordinary circumstances in which he was placed, no one could 
have been found to meet as well as he did the various requirements. 
Situated as they were, the Hudson Bay Company were of greater use 
to the Imperial Government than the Government was to them. In 
the emergency the Company behaved with great liberality gave up- 
in many instances the use of their establishments to accommodate the 
public officers. % 

LICENSE ON THE MAINLAND. It required prompt action on the part 
of Governor Douglas to deal with and keep in order the motley crowd 
of thousands who nocked into Victoria and onwards towards Fraser 
River. The gold discoveries put an entirely different aspect on affairs 
on the mainland. The influx of miners could not do otherwise than 
destroy the fur trade. It was therefore concluded by the Company 


as well as the Imperial Government, that the license of exclusive 
rights on the mainland should terminate. The Secretary of State for 
the Colonies realizing the difficult position in which Governor Douglas 
was placed, wrote to him in reference to his connection with the 
Hudson Bay Company. 

LORD LYTTON'S DESPATCH. On the 16th of July, 1858, a confi- 
dential despatch from Lord Lytton stated that the public despatch of 
the same date would show him the high 
value which her Majesty's Government at- 
tached to his services, and at the same time 
would guard him against some of the errors 
into which he might be led by his position as 
an agent of the Hudson Bay Company, whilst 
also an officer of her Majesty's Government. 
He informed him that a bill was in progress 
through Parliament, to get rid of certain 
legal obstacles which interposed to prevent 
LORD LYTTON ^e Crown from constituting a government 

suited to the exigencies of so peculiar a case, 

over the territory resorted to by the multitudes whom the gold dig- 
gings on the Eraser River had attracted. 

" It is proposed," the despatch continues, " to appoint a governor 
with a salary of at least 1,000 per annum, to be paid for the present 
out of a parliamentary vote. And it is the desire of her Majesty's 
Government to appoint you at once to that office, on the usual terms 
of a governor's appointment ; namely, for six years at least, your 
administration of that office continuing to merit the approval of her 
Majesty's Government ; this government to be held, for the present, 
in conjunction with your separate commission as governor of 
Vancouver Island. With regard to the latter, I am not at this 
moment able to specify the terms as to the salary on which it may 
ultimately be held, but your interests would, of course, not be 

" The legal connection of the Hudson Bay Company with Vancouver 
Island will shortly be severed by the resumption by the Crown of the 
grant of the soil. And their legal rights, on the Continent opposite 
terminates in May next, at all events by the expiry of Her license, 
if her Majesty should not be advised to terminate it sooner on the 
establishment of the new colony. 

" It is absolutely necessary, in their view, that the administration 
of the government, both of Vancouver Island and of the mainland 
opposite, should be entrusted to an officer or officers entirely 
unconnected with the Company. I wish, therefore, for your distinct 


statement, as early as you can afford it, whether you are willing, on 
receiving the appointment which is thus offered to you, to give up, 
within as short a time as may be practicable, all connection which 
you may have with that company, either as its servant, or a- 
shareholder, or in any other capacity. 

" I make this proposal without discussing at present the nature 
and extent of your actual connections with that Company, but with 
the acquiescence of the governor of the company, who has seen this 
despatch. In the meantime, and awaiting your answer, it is my 
present intention (liable only to be altered by what may transpire in 
future advices from yourself) to issue a commission to you as governor^ 
but you will fully understand that unless you are prepared to assure 
me that all connection between yourself and the Company is 
terminated, or in course of speedy termination, you will be relieved 
by the appointment of a successor. 

" I make this proposal briefly and without unnecessary preface, 
being fully assured that you will understand, on the one hand, that 
her Majesty's Government are very anxious to secure your services,, 
if practicable ; but on the other that it is quite impossible that you 
should continue to serve at once the Crown and the Company, when 
their respective rights and interests may possibly diverge, and when, 
at all events, public opinion will not allow of such a connection.'' 

IN A SUBSEQUENT DESPATCH (July 31), Lord Lytton says : " As 
it is a matter of considerable importance, both to her Majesty's 
Government and yourself, that there should be a perfect under- 
standing as to the terms on which, if you should so decide, you 
would assume office under imperial authority, I think it right to 
state, as it was omitted on the last occasion, that beside relinquishing, 
directly or indirectly, all connection with the Hudson Bay Company, 
it will be indispensable to apply that condition equally to any interest 
you may possess in the Puget Sound Company. 

" It is most probable that you have understood the offer contained 
in my confidential despatch of the 16th instant in that sense, but I 
think it better now to guard against any possible misconception on 
the subject by this additional explanation. It is due to you to add 
that if, after reflection, you should entertain the persuasion that it 
will either not conduce to the public interests or your own to 
exchange your present position for that of governor of British 
Columbia, the ability which you have displayed whilst holding the 
office of governor of Vancouver Island will not escape the recollection 
of her Majesty's Government, should it be your wish, on the 
expiration of the Hudson Bay Company's license next year, to enter 
into the service of the Crown in the colonies." 

In another despatch, also dated July 31st, the Right Honorable 
the Secretary of State adds: "I need hardly observe that British 
Columbia, for by that name the Queen has been graciously pleased 
to observe that the country should be known, stands on a very 
different footing from many of our colonial settlements. They 


possessed the chief elements of success in lands, which afforded safe 
though not very immediate sources of prosperity. This territory 
combines in a remarkable degree, the advantage of fertile lands, fine 
timber, adjacent harbors, rivers, together with rich mineral products. 
These last, which have led to the large immigration of which all 
accounts speak, furnish the Government with the means of raising a 
revenue which will at once defray the expenses of an establishment. 
. . . My own views lead me to think that moderate duties on 
beer, wine, spirits and other articles usually subject to taxation 
would be preferable to the imposition of licenses : and I confidently 
expect that from these sources a large and an immediate revenue 
may be derived. 

" The disposal also of public lands, and especially of town lots, for 
which T am led to believe there will be a great demand, will afford a 
rapid means of obtaining funds applicable to the general purposes of 
the colony. You will, probably, at an early period take steps for 
deciding upon a site for a seaport town. But the question of how a 
revenue can best be raised in this new country depends so much on 
local circumstances, upon which you possess such superior means of 
forming a judgment to myself, that I necessarily, but at the same 
time willingly, leave the decision upon it to you, with the remark 
that it will be prudent on your part and expedient to ascertain the 
general sense of the immigrants upon a matter of so much 
importance. Before I leave this part of the subject, I must state 
that whilst the Imperial Parliament will cheerfully lend its assistance 
in the early establishment of this new colony, it will expect that the 
colony will be self-supporting as soon as possible. You will keep 
steadily in view that it is the desire of this country that 
representative institutions and self-government should prevail in 
British Columbia, when by the growth of a fixed population, materials 
for these institutions shall be known to exist ; and to that object, you 
must from the commencement aim and shape all your policy. 

" A party of Royal Engineers will be despatched to the colony 
immediately. It will devolve upon them to survey those parts of the 
country which may be considered most suitable for settlement, to 
mark out allotments of land for public purposes, to suggest a site for 
the seat of government, to point out where roads should be made> 
and to render you such assistance as may be in their power, on the 
distinct understanding, however, that this force is to be maintained 
at the Imperial cost for only a limited period, and that if required 
afterwards, the colony will have to defray the expense thereof. I 
have to add, that I am of opinion that it will be reasonable and 
proper that the expense of the survey of all allotments of land ta 
private individuals should be included in the price which the 
purchaser will have to pay for his property. 

" I shall endeavor to secure, if possible, the services of an officer 
in command of the engineers who will be capable of reporting 011 the 
value of the mineral resources. This force is sent for scientific and 


practical purposes, and not solely for military objects. As little 
display as possible should, therefore, be made of it. Its mere 
appearance, if prominently obtruded, might serve to irritate, rather 
than appease the mixed population which will be collected in British 
Columbia. It should be remembered that your real strength lies in 
the conviction of the immigrants that their interests are identical 
with those of the Government, which should be carried on in harmony 
with, and by means of the people of the country. 

"As connected with this subject, it may be convenient to you to 
know that I contemplate sending out an experienced inspector of 
police to assist you in the formation of a police force. You should 
consequently lose no time in considering how that force can be 
organized. It must be derived from people on the spot, who will 
understand that for their preservation from internal disturbances, 
they must rely solely on themselves, and not on the military. I 
cannot permit myself to doubt, that in a matter so essential to the 
common security of all, you will meet with the ready concurrence of 
the community, and that you will act for their interests in a manner 
which shall be popular and conformable to their general sentiments. 

" I have to enjoin upon you to consider the best and most humane 
means of dealing with the native Indians. The feelings of this 
country would be strongly opposed to the adoption of any arbitrary or 
oppressive measures towards them. At this distance, and with the 
imperfect means of knowledge which I possess, I am reluctant to 
offer, as yet, any suggestion as to the prevention of affrays between 
the Indians and the immigrants. This question is of so local a 
character that it must be solved by your knowledge and experience, 
And I commit it to you, in the full persuasion that you will pay every 
regard to the interests of the natives which an enlightened humanity 
can suggest. Let me not omit to observe, that it should be an 
invariable condition, in all bargains or treaties with the natives for 
the cession of lands possessed by them, that subsistence should be 
supplied to them in some other shape, and above all, that it is the 
earnest desire of her Majesty's Government that your early attention 
should be given to the best means of diffusing the blessings of the 
Ohristian religion and of civilization among the natives. 

"I wish to impress upon you the necessity of seeking, by all 
legitimate means, to secure the confidence and good-will of the 
immigrants, and to exhibit no jealousy whatever of Americans or 
other foreigners who may enter the country. You will remember 
that the country is destined for free institutions at the earliest 
moment. In the meanwhile it will be advisable for you to ascertain 
what Americans resorting to the diggings enjoy the most influence or 
popular esteem, and you should open with them a frank and friendly 
-communication as to the best means of preserving order and securing 
the interests and peace of the colony. It may be deserving of your 
consideration whether there may not be found already amongst the 
immigrants, both British and foreign, some persons whom you could 


immediately form into a council of advice ; men whom, if an elective 
council were ultimately established in the colony, the immigrants 
themselves would be likely to elect, and who might be able to render 
you valuable assistance until the machinery of government were 
perfected, and you were in possession of the instructions which the 
Queen will be pleased to issue for your guidance. 1 shall hope to 
receive, at an early period, your views on these and other topics of 
importance which are likely to present themselves for your decision 
in the difficult circumstances in which you are placed, and I request 
you to be assured, on the part of her Majesty's Government, that I 
shall be most ready to afford you every assistance in my power." 

On August 14th, in forwarding copy of the Act to provide for the 
government of British Columbia, Lord Lytton writes to Governor 
Douglas : 

" There has not been time to furnish you by this mail with the 
order-in-council, commission and instructions to yourself as governor, 
which are necessary in order to complete your legal powers. You 
will, nevertheless, continue to act during the brief interval before 
their arrival as you have hitherto done, as the authorized repre- 
sentative of her Majesty's Government in the territory of British 
Columbia, and take, without hesitation, such steps as you may deem 
absolutely necessary for the government of the territory, and as are 
not repugnant to the principles of British law ; but you will do so in 
conformity with the directions which I transmit to you on several 
subjects by my despatches of even date herewith, and in such others 
as you may receive from me." 

In one of the despatches referred to, the Secretary of State says : 

" I have to acknowledge the very important series of despatches 
(numbers 24 to 29 inclusive, from June 10th to July 1st, 1858), 
showing the manner in which you have continued to administer the 
government of the territory in which the recent discoveries of gold 
have taken place, and detailing the extraordinary course of events 
in that quarter. Her Majesty's Government feel that the difficulties 
of your position are such as courage, judgment and familiarity with 
the resources of the country and character of the people can alone 
overcome. They feel also that minute instructions conve)ed from 
this distance, and founded on an imperfect knowledge, are very liable 
to error and misunderstanding. On some points, however, you have 
yourself asked for approval and instructions ; on others it is absolutely 
necessary that the views of her Majesty's Government should be made 
clear to you. 

" As to the steps which you have already taken, I approve of the 
appointments which you have made and reported of revenue officers, 
Mr. Hicks and Mr. Travaillot, of Mr. Perrier as justice of the 
peace, and of Mr. Young as gold commissioner. I approve also, as a 



temporary measure, of the steps which you have taken in regard to- 
the surveying department ; but I have it in contemplation to send to- 
the colony a head of that department from England. 

" I propose selecting in this country some person for the office of 
collector of customs, and shall send you also, at the earliest moment, 
an officer authorized to act as judge, and who, I trust, as the colony 
increases in importance, may be found competent to fill with credit 
and weight the situation of chief justice. I await your intimations 
as to the wants and means of the colony, in this sudden rise of social 
institutions in a country hitherto so wild, in order to select such law 
advisers as you may deem the condition and progress of immigration 
more immediately require. And it is my wish that all legal authorities 
connected with the government should be sent from home, and thus 
freed from every suspicion of local partialities, prejudices and interests. 

" I highly approve of the steps which you have taken, as reported 
by yourself, with regard to the Indians. It is in the execution of 
this very delicate and important portion of your duties that her 
Majesty's Government especially rely on your knowledge and experi- 
ence, obtained in your long service under the Hudson Bay Company. 
You may in return rely on their support in the execution of such 
reasonable measures as you may devise for the protection of the 
natives, the regulation of their intercourse with the whites, and 
whenever such work may be commenced, their civilization. In what 
way the fur trade with the Indians may henceforth be carried on 
with the most safety, and with due care to save them from the 
demoralizing bribes of ardent spirits, I desire to know your views 
before you make any fixed regulations. No regulations giving the 
slightest preference to the Hudson Bay Company will in future be- 
admissible; but possibly, with the assent of the whole community, 
licenses for Indian trade, impartially given to all who would embark 
in it, might be a prudent and not unpopular precaution. 

" I approve of the measures which you have taken for raising a 
revenue by customs, and authorize their continuance. I approve alsa 
of your continuing to levy license fees for mining purposes, requesting 
you, however, to adopt the scale of these fees to the general acquies- 
cence of adventurers, and leaving it to your judgment to change this 
mode of taxation (as, for instance, into an export duty), if it shall 
appear on experience to be unadvisable to continue it. But on this 
head I must give you certain cautions. In the first place, no distinc- 
tion must be made between foreigners and British subjects as to the 
amount per head of the license fee required (nor am I aware that 
you have proposed to do so). In the second place, it must be made 
perfectly clear to everyone, that this license fee is levied, not in 
regard to any supposed rights of the Hudson Bay Company, but 
simply in virtue of the prerogative of the Crown (now confirmed by 
the Act of Parliament transmitted to you, if this was necessary) to 
raise revenue as it thinks proper, in return for the permission to- 
derive profits from the minerals on Crown lands. 


" Further, with regard to these supposed rights of the Hudson Bay 
Company, I must refer you, ia even stronger terms, to the cautions 
already conveyed to you by my former despatches. The Hudson Bay 
Company have hitherto -had an exclusive right to trade with Indians 
in the Fraser River territory, but they have had no other right 
whatever. They have had no right to exclude strangers. They have 
had no rights of government, or of occupation of the soil. They have 
had no right to prevent or interfere with any kind of trading, except 
with the Indians alone. But to render all misconceptions impossible, 
her Majesty's Government have determined on revoking the Com- 
pany's license (which would itself have expired in next May) as regards 
British Columbia, being fully authorized to do so, by the terms of the 
license itself, whenever a new colony is constituted. 

" The Company's private property will be protected, in common 
with that of all her Majesty's subjects ; but they have no claim 
whatever for compensation for the loss of their exclusive trade, 
which they only possessed subject to the right of revocation. The 
instrument formally revoking the license will shortly be forwarded 
to you. . . . The immense resources which the information that 
reaches England every day and is confirmed with such authority by 
your last despatch, assures me that the colony possesses, and the 
facility for immediate use of those resources for the purposes of 
revenue, will at once free the Mother Country from those expenses 
which are adverse to the policy of all healthful colonization. 
The most important works to which the local revenue can be applied 
seem to be police, public works to facilitate landing and travelling, 
payment of the absolutely necessary officers, and above all, surveying. 
But your own local judgment must mainly decide. You will render 
accurate accounts to me both of receipts and expenditure, and you 
will probably find it necessary shortly to appoint a treasurer, which 
will be a provisional appointment. 

" You are fully authorized to take such measures as you can for 
the transmission of letters and levying postage. It appears by your 
despatch that the staff of surveyors you have engaged are at present 
employed on Vancouver Island, the soil of which is as yet held under 
the expiring license of the Hudson Bay Company ; but it is British 
Columbia which now demands and indeed may almost absorb the 
immediate cares of its governor, and your surveyor may at once 
prepare the way for the arrival of the surveyor-general appointed 
from hence, and of the sappers and miners who will be under his 

" I now come to the important subject of future government. 
It is possible (although on this point I am singularly without 
information) that the operations of the gold diggers will be to a 
considerable extent suspended during winter, and that yoa will 
therefore have some amount of leisure to consider the permanent 
prospects of the colony and the best mode of administering its affairs. 

"You will be empowered both to govern and to legislate of your 


own authority ; but you will distinctly understand that this is a 
temporary measure only. It is the anxious wish of her Majesty's 
Government that popular institutions, without which they are con- 
vinced peace and order cannot long prevail, should be established with 
as little delay as practicable ; and until an Assembly can be organized 
(which may be whenever a permanent population, however small, is 
established on the soil), I think, as I have already stated in a former 
despatch, that your best course will probably be to form some kind of 
temporary council, calling in this manner to your aid fcuch persons 
as the miners themselves may place confidence in. 

"You will receive additional directions along with your commis- 
sion, when forwarded to you ; and I have embodied in a separate 
despatch those regarding the very important question of the disposal 
of land. 

"Aware of the immediate demand on your time and thoughts con- 
nected with the pressing question of immigration to the gold mines, I 
do not wish to add unnecessarily to the burden of duties so cnerous ; 
but as yet, our Department has been left singularly in ignorance of 
much that should enter into considerations of general policy, and on 
which non-official opinions are constantly volunteered. Probably, 
amongst the persons you are now employing, and in whose knowledge 
and exactitude you can confide, you might find someone capable of 
assisting, under your superintendence, in furnishing me, as early as 
possible, with a report of the general capacities of the harbors of 
Vancouver, of their advantages and defects ; of the mouth of 
Fraser River, as the site of the entry into British Columbia, apart 
from the island ; of the probabilities of a coal superior for steam 
purposes to that of the island, which may be found in the mainland 
of British Columbia ; and such other information as may guide 
the British Government to the best and readiest means of developing 
the various and the differing resources both of the island and the 
mainland resources which have so strangely been concealed for 
ages, which are now so suddenly brought to light, and which may 
be destined to effect, at no very distant period, a marked and 
permanent change in the commerce and navigation of the known 
world. The officers now engaged in the maritime survey will 
probably render great assistance to yourself and to her Majesty's 
Government in this particular." 

For the guidance of Governor Douglas, Sir E. B. Lytton sends a 
despatch, August 14th, which says : 

" With regard to the very important subject of the disposal of 
land, you are authorized to sell land merely wanted for agricultural 
purposes, whenever a demand for it shall arise, at such upset price as 
you may think advisable. I believe that a relatively high upset price 
has many advantages ; but your course must, in some degree, be 
guided by the price at which such land is selling in neighboring 
American territories. But with regard to land wanted for town 


purposes (to which speculation is almost certain to direct itself in the 
first instance), I cannot caution you too strongly against allowing it 
to be disposed of at too low a sum. An upset price of at least 1 
per acre is, in my opinion, absolutely required, in order that the 
local government may in some degree participate in the profit of the 
probal}le sales, and that mere land-jobbing may be in some degree 
checked. Whenever a free legislature is assembled, it will be one of 
its duties to make further provision on this head. 

"To open land for settlement gradually; not to sell beyond the 
limits of what is either surveyed or ready for immediate survey, and 
to prevent, as far as in you lies, squatting on unsold land. 

" To keep a separate account of all revenue to be derived from the 
sale of land, applying it to the purposes, for the present, of survey 
and communication, which, indeed, should be the first charge on land 
revenue ; and you will of course remember that this will include the 
expense of the survey party (viz., sappers and miners) now sent out. 
I shall be anxious to receive such accounts at the earliest period at 
which they can be furnished. 

u Foreigners, as such, are not entitled to grants of waste land of 
the Crown in British colonies. But it is the strong desire of her 
Majesty's Government to attach to this territory all peaceful settlers, 
without regard to nation. Naturalization should, therefore, be 
granted to all who desire it, and are not disqualified by special causes, 
and with naturalization the right of acquiring Crown land should follow. 

" You will pardon me if I enjoin on you, as imperative, the most 
diligent care that in the sales of land there should not be the slightest 
cause to impute a desire to show favor to the servants of the Hudson 
Bay Company. Parliament will watch with jealousy every proceeding 
connected with such sales ; and I shall rely upon you to take every 
precaution which not only impartial probity but deliberate prudence 
can suggest, that there shall be no handle given for a charge, I will 
not say of favor, but of indifference or apathy to the various kinds of 
land-jobbing, either to benefit favored individuals or to cheat the land 
revenue, which are of so frequent occurrence at the outset of coloni- 
zation, and which it is the duty of her Majesty's Government, so far 
as lies in them, to repress." 

THE FIRST DETACHMENT of the Royal Engineers for British Col- 
umbia left England, sailing from Southampton on the 2nd September, 
in the steamer La Plata. Sir Edward Bulwer Lytton, Colonial 
Minister, went on board the steamer when she was off Cowes, and 
addressed the party, who were under the command of Captain 
Parsons, R.E. The London Times, speaking of the corps selected for 
the Pacific coast, said : '" Whenever her Majesty's Government want 
a body of skilful, intelligent and industrious mechanics to perform 
any task requiring peculiar judgment, energy and accuracy, such as 
the arrangement of a great exhibition, the execution of an accurate 


survey, or even the construction of houses, roads and bridges, in a 
.new colony, they have only to turn to the corps of Royal Engineers, 
and they find all the material they want." 

To CAPTAIN PARSONS was given charge of despatches for Governor 
Douglas. Under separate cover, he also sent a despatch with the 
same bearer, as follows : 

" DOWNING STREET, September 1st, 1858. 

" SIR, 1 have the honor to introduce to you Captain Parsons, the 
bearer of this despatch, who, in the pursuance of the intention which 
I have already communicated to you, has been directed to repair to 
British Columbia, accompanied by twenty non-commissioned officers 
and men of the Royal Engineers. 

" I need scarcely observe to you that the object for which this 
officer and his party have been detached to British Columbia is for 
the exclusive service of that colony. You will, therefore, afford him 
every assistance in your power for enabling him to commence imme- 
diately such operations in it as j-hall appear to him to be necessary, 
in anticipation of his commanding officer, Colonel Moody, R.E., who 
will follow him with as much rapidity as practicable. And I trust 
that, if Captain Parsons should require the temporary occupation for 
his party of the trading-posts up the country, which belong to the 
Hudson Bay Company, you will take measures for affording him such 
accp m m odation . " 

CAPTAIN PARSONS was also the bearer of the commission, dated 
Sept. 2nd, and the instructions for Governor Douglas, as well as an 
order-in-council of the same date empowering him to make provision 
for the administration of justice, and to establish all such laws as 
might be necessary for the peace, order and good government of 
British Columbia, and also of the same date, the Queen's revocation 
of the Crown grant or charter of the 30th May, 1838, to the Hudson 
Bay Company, in so far as the said grant embraces or extends to the 
territories comprised within the colony of British Columbia. 

COLONEL MOODY APPOINTED. By the same overland mail, another 
despatch was sent by Lord Lytton to Governor Douglas, acquainting 
him that Colonel Moody had been appointed to the command of the 
Koyal Engineers, and had also been selected for the office of Chief 
Commissioner of lands and works in British Columbia ; and that a 
copy of the instructions had been addressed to Colonel Moody, 
with reference to the discharge of his duties in that capacity, and 
specifying the amount of regimental pay and colonial allowances to 
which he and the commissioned and non-commissioned officers and 
sappers of the detachment are entitled. 



His INSTRUCTIONS. A letter containing the instructions to Colonel 
Moody referred to above, dated Aug. 23rd, says : 

;. |" It is to be distinctly understood that the governor is the supreme 
authority in the colony. That you will concert with him, and take 
his orders as to the spots in the colony to which vour attention as to 
surveys, etc., should be immediately and principally directed. That 
jou will advise and render him all the assistance in your power, in 
the difficult situation in which it is probable that he will be placed 
lor some time. The governor will be instructed to regard your 
duties as special, and that they are not on any account to be 
interfered with, except under circumstances of the greatest gravity, 
so that all possible conflict of duties may be avoided. On this point 
Lord Lytton feels persuaded that yoiir character and colonial 
experience are sufficient guarantees against any discordance with the 
governor. . . . 

"It is well to understand that her Majesty's Government count 
on the immediate raising of large revenues from the land sales 
and other resources of the colony, sufficient to defray from the outset 
the expenses of the survey, and of all other except the salary of the 
governor. And you will afford the governor, though without 
shackling his discretion, the benefits of your talents and experience 
in any suggestions for ensuring, at the earliest period, this paramount 

"The rates of pay and allowances which have been settled for 
officers and men are as follows : 


Regimental pay Colonial 
per annum. allowance. Total. 

1 chief commissioner of lands and 

works, Colonel Moody, R. E 330 1,200 1 ,530 

1 captain . . . 202 350 552 

1 second captain 202 350 552 

1 third captain 202 350 552 

2 subalterns 125 250 375 


Regimenta I pay Working pay 
per diem. per diem. 

1 color- sergeant and acting sergeant-major . 3s. 10| 3s. to 5s. 

1 sergeant and acting quarter-master sergeant 3s. 4^ 3s. to 5s. 

7 sergeants (each) 2s. lOf 3s. to 5s. 

8 first corporals 2s. 2j Is. to 4s. 

8 second corporals Is. 104 1 s - * ^ 8> 

2 buglers , . Is. 2^ Is. to 4s. 

123 sappers Is. 2^ Is. to 4s. 

" It is agreed that you shall remain in the colony one year from 
the date of your arrival, and that you will not quit it unless you are 
satisfied that the officer you leave in charge is fully competent to the 


work before him, and that the public service is not prejudiced by 
your return to England. Should you desire to stay longer for the 
execution of works in which you are actively engaged, and to which 
yon consider your presence essential, you will communicate that wish 
to her Majesty's Government. You will make it your care to furnish 
this department, from time to time, with full reports of the various- 
resources and capabilities of the colony, according to the information 
which the exercise of your functions will necessarily give you, and 
with a view to the development of the social and industrial prosperity 
and welfare of the colony its mines, its fisheries, the quality of its 
coal, the nature of the soil, the maritime approaches to the colony, if 
held distinct from the Island. These reports will be sent to this, 
department through the governor." 



THE TRANSMISSION OF MAILS is also made the subject of a despatch 
to Governor Douglas. Lord Lytton transmits to him the corre- 
spondence between the colonial office and the treasury on the subject. 
The Postmaster-General concludes that letters will be forwarded 
with the greatest advantage via Panama. Owing to the bad con- 
nection between the arrival and departure of the steamers on the 
Atlantic and the Pacific, an arrangement was recommended to be 
made between her Majesty's Postmaster-General and the Postmaster 
of the United States, so that a more advantageous service than the 
present might be entered into. 

THE ABORIGINES PROTECTION SOCIETY having heard of the reckless 
inhumanity of the gold-diggers in the State of California, addressed a 
letter to the colonial secretary, stating that for many years the society 
had taken a deep interest in the Indian tribes to the west as well as 
the east of the Ro3ky Mountains, and that as it was understood that 
the natives generally entertained ineradicable feelings of hostility 
against the " Americans," who are pouring into the new colony by 
thousands, and who will probably value Indian life there as cheaply 
as they did in California, the society point out the justice and 
necessity of steps being taken by the Government to protect the 


natives. A copy of the letter was forwarded to Governor Douglas, 
with injunctions to him to secure the object desired. No one could 
have been appealed to more ready or willing fco befriend the natives 
than Governor Douglas, or to see that they received justice as far as 
lay in his power. 

THE LAST DETACHMENT of the Royal Engineers for service in 
British Columbia sailed from "the Downs," on September 17th, on 
the clipper ship Thames City, 557 tons, commanded by Captain 
Glover. It consisted of two officers, one staff' assistant surgeon,, 
eighteen non-commissioned officers and men, thirty-one women, and 
thirty-four children, the whole under the command of Captain R. H. 
Luard, R.E. The voyage round Cape Horn occupied 175 days. 

GRANTS OF LAND. It was arranged that the men and non- 
commissioned officers of the Royal Engineers who should go to British 
Columbia should receive grants of agricultural, not mining land, not 
exceeding thirty acres each, after six years' continuous and good 
faithful service within the colony, if desired. 

JUDGE BEGBIE'S APPOINTMENT. The budget of despatches from 
Lord Lytton, under date September 2, also contained forms of 
proclamations to be issued by Governor Douglas, one declaring 
British law to be in force in British Columbia, and another 
indemnifying the governor and other officers for acts done before 
the establishment of any legitimate authority in British Columbia ; 
also a notification that Mr. Begbie had been commissioned to act as 
judge of Britisli Columbia (salary ,800), and would proceed by next 
packet (October 2) adding in reference to Judge Begbie, that he 
had been fully instructed that, " although invested with the very 
important office of judge, he will nevertheless have the kindness, for 
the present at least, to lend you his general aid for the compilation 
of the necessary laws and other legal business. This is the more 
proper duty of an attorney-general ; and should the colony advance, 
as seems at present possible, the services of such an officer will no 
doubt be urgently required." . . . 


"With these few observations, I leave with confidence in your 
hands the powers entrusted to you by her Majesty's Government. 
These powers are indeed of very serious and unusual extent, but her 
Majesty's Government fully rely on your moderation and discretion 
in the use of them. You are aware that they have only been granted 
in so unusual a form on account of the very unusual circumstances 
which have called into being the colony committed to your charge,. 


and which may for some time continue to characterize it. To 
use them, except for the most necessary purposes, would be, in truth, 
to abuse them greatly. They are required for the maintenance of 
British law and British habits of order, and for regulating the special 
questions to which the condition and employment of the population 
may give birth. But the office of legislation, in the higher and 
more general sense, should be left for the legislature which may be 
hereafter constituted, and which her Majesty's Government hope will 
be constituted at the first time consistent with the general interests 
of the colony. And you will above all remember that the ordinary 
rights and privileges of British subjects, and of those foreigners who 
dwell under British protection, must be sedulously maintained, and 
that no innovation contrary to the principles of our law can be 
justified, except for purposes of absolute and temporary necessity. 

" I will only add that, although it has been judged prudent not to 
make the revocation of the Hudson Bay Company's license take 
^effect until proclaimed by yourself, it is the particular instructions of 
her Majesty's Government that you proclaim it with the least 
practicable delay, so that no questions like those which have already 
arisen as to the extent and nature of the Company's rights can 
possibly occur." 

COLLECTOR OF CUSTOMS. Mr. Wymond Hamley was appointed on 
the 16th of September, as collector of customs for British Columbia, 
at a salary of .400 per annum. Governor Douglas was notified that 
Mr. Hamley would proceed in the Thames City in the course of a few 
days. The despatch says : 

44 With respect to offices generally, which the public exigencies 
may compel you to create, and for which selections should be made 
in England, I have to observe that I consider it of great importance 
to the general social welfare and dignity of the colony that gentlemen 
should be encouraged to come from this kingdom, not as mere 
adventurers seeking employment, but in the hope of obtaining 
professional occupations for which they are calculated ; such, for 
instance, as stipendiary magistrates or gold commissioners. 

" You will, therefore, report to me at your early convenience, 
whether there is any field for such situations, and describe as 
accurately as you can the peculiar qualifications which are requisite, 
in order that T may assist you by making the best selections in my 
power. It is quite natural that the servants of the Hudson Bay 
Company should, from their knowledge of business, their abilities 
and services, have a very fair claim to consideration and share in 
the disposal of the local patronage. But caution should be observed 
against yielding to any appearance of undue favor or exclusiveness to 
the servants of that company. You will carefully remember that the 
public interests are the first consideration, and that it should be 
known that employment in the public service is as open and fair in 


British Columbia as in every other of the Queen's colonial possessions. 
For these reasons it is still more desirable that careful appointments 
should be made in England. You will not fail to write to me fullv 
by each mail, as her Majesty's Government wish to know everything 
that passes of importance in British Columbia." 

MINERS' LICENSES. When writing on miners' claims and licenses, 
in a despatch, dated October 14th, Lord Lytlon says, referring to the 
license which Governor Douglas had imposed, of 21s. per month on 
each miner : 

" That such an arrangement may on the whole be most congenial 
to the disposition of the Californian miners whom you may have to 
consider ; but it was the system of enforcing, from time to time, the 
license fee which created in the colony of Victoria so much dissatis- 
faction, and ultimately led to the Ballarat riot, and to the adoption 
of new rules. The Victorian system was in the main the same as 
that which you have apparently adopted. It exacted a fee of XI 
from each miner per month, and, as Sir Charles llotham, says in 
a despatch, 21st November, 1855, to Sir William Molesworth, 'the 
great and primary cause of complaint which I found was undoubtedly 
the license fee.' 

"It was then decided that the monthly license fee should be 
abolished, and be replaced, independently of royalties, first, by a 
miner's annual certificate of 1; secondly, by the payment of 10 per 
annum on every acre of alluvial soil ; and thirdly, by an indirect tax 
in the shape of 2s. 6d. export duty on the ounce of gold. Experience 
seems, as far as we yet know, to have justified this change in Victoria. 
Discontent, with its attendant dangers, has been removed ; and by 
the present system, which appears to be acquiesced in by all parties, 
a larger revenue is obtained than ever was the case under the earlier 
arrangement. I observe, indeed, by the last Victorian returns for 
1856, that the duties on the export of gold amounted to more than 

MILITARY ASSISTANCE. A despatch, dated October 16th, refers 
especially to the military assistance which had been placed at 
Governor Douglas's service, if required, under Admiral Baynes at 
Esquimalt, and the Royal Engineers, twenty and twelve men under 
Captain Parsons and Captain Grant respectively, in advance of the 
main detachment ; that with the first detachment he, Lord Lytton, 
had forwarded the governor's commission, having immediately on the 
return of the Queen from the Continent obtained her Majesty's 
signature to the commission, and took it on board the vessel where 
Captain Parsons was in charge of the engineers. . . . The 
despatch continues : 


"It is my object to provide for, or to suggest to you how to meet,, 
all unforeseen exigencies to the colony as they may arise ; but my 
views are based on the assumption that the common interest in life- 
and property will induce the immigrants to combine amongst them- 
selves for ordinary purposes, and that when danger needing military 
force arises, they will readily gather around and swell the force, 
which will thus expand as circumstances require. From England we 
send skill and discipline; the raw material (that is, the mere men), a 
colony intended for free institutions, and on the border of so powerful 
a neighbor as the United States of America, should learn betimes of 
itself to supply. 

"Referring to the laudable co-operation in the construction of the 
road which has been evoked by your energy from the good sense and 
public spirit of the miners, I rejoice to see how fully that instance of 
the zeal and intelligence to be expected from the voluntary efforts of 
immigrants, uniting in the furtherance of interests common to them 
all, bears out the principle of policy on which I designed to construct 
a colony intended for self-government, and trained to its exercise by 
self-reliance. The same characteristics which have made these settlers 
combine so readily in the construction of a road, will, I trust, under 
the same able and cheering influence which you prove that you know 
so well how to exercise, cause them equally to unite in the formation 
of a police, in the establishment of law, in the collection of revenue, 
in short in all which may make individual life secure and the com- 
munity prosperous. I trust you will assure the hardy and spirited 
men who have assisted in this preliminary undertaking, how much 
their conduct is appreciated by her Majesty's Government. 

" I feel thankful for the valuable services so seasonably and 
efficiently rendered by the Satellite and Plumper. I cannot conclude 
without a cordial expression of my sympathy in the difficulties you 
have encountered, and of my sense of the ability, the readiness of 
resource, the wise and manly temper of conciliation which you have 
so signally displayed ; and I doubt not that you will continue to 
show the same vigor and the same discretion in its exercise ; and 
you may rely with confidence on whatever support and aid her 
Majesty's Government can afford you." 

ROAD CONSTRUCTION. The construction of the road referred to 
was on the left bank of Harrison River and Lillooet Lake, to connect 
Anderson with Harrison Lake, the total distance bstween these two 
points being about eighty miles of land carriage over a generally level 
country. The men employed on that work were miners, who were 
anxious to have the road opened for their own accommodation in the 
first place. It was accomplished as follows: A party of about five 
hundred of all nations volunteered their services. They offered to 
make a money deposit of $25 each in the hands of the Government,. 


as security for good conduct. They were to receive no pay for their 
work, the Government merely agreeing to supply them with food 
while employed on the road, and to transport them free of expense 
to the commencement of the road on Harrison Lake, where the 
deposit money of $25 would be repaid to them in provisions at 
Yictoria prices when the road was finished. The work was com- 
pleted in the most expeditious manner, the men working with good 
will as they were each interested in the road. 

DELIVERY OF PROVISIONS. The men were divided into twenty 
companies of twenty-five men ; each company under the command 
of a captain, who carried all orders into effect, reported to the com- 
mander of the corps, and drew upon the commissary for the weekly 
supplies of food. An engineer, with guides and Indians acquainted 
with the country, blazed the trees and marked out the road in advance 
of the main body. The route proved of great advantage during 
the mining excitement. There was some slight disagreement about 
having the provisions delivered at the upper instead of the lower end 
of the road. This was settled by having them delivered half way 
from the lower end. 

PETER BROWN'S MURDER. Up to the time of this great stir and 
gold fever on the mainland, the colony of Vancouver Island had been 
working its way along in rather a quiet manner. There had been a 
few difficulties with the Cowichin Indians, who indulged, now and 
then, in stealing some of the settlers' cattle. Two natives of that 
tribe, in L^ecember, 1852, had murdered PETER BROWN, one of the 
Company's shepherds. That crime must be punished, and Governor 
Douglas secured the murderers in his own quiet way. One of the 
murderers, it was reported, had taken refuge with the tribe at 
Saanich ; the other had fled to Nanainco. Captain Kuper, of the 
war vessel Thetis, then at Esquimalt, volunteered to assist in their 
capture. The offer was graciously accepted, as the tribe was fierce 
and numerous. A sufficient force was transferred from the Thetis, 
and placed on board the Company's vessel Recovery, which was then, 
on January 4th, 1853, towed by the war steamer round into Haro 
Strait for fair wind and tide Governor Douglas taking command. 

A DEMAND MADE. Opposite the village of Saanich, the vessel 
<jame to anchor. Douglas went ashore, but the culprit was absent 
he had gone to Cowichin. The Recovery proceeded north, arriving at 
Cowichin early on the morning of the 6th. A demand was made for 
the murderer. The chief asked for time to consider this was 


granted. A meeting was next appointed for final conference on 
shore next day. At the time appointed, the forces from the 
vessel landed. The Cowichin chief with a few attendants met them. 
A tent was pitched on a knoll, and then the white men waited the 
arrival of the chiefs followers. Shortly after the chief requested the 
withdrawal of the troops a little out of sight, lest his people should 
be afraid to land. This was done, and yet, nearly an hour elapsed 
before any of them appeared. Then two canoes were seen making 
their way quietly out of the river. After them came six other 
canoes, larger ones, all in a line. 

THE MURDERER PRODUCED. Paddling slowly along the shore, 
chanting their war song, drumming on their canoes, and whooping 
like demons, they passed by the council ground and landed a little 
beyond ; then rushing up the hill, shouting and clashing their arms 
as if to strike with terror any army daring to oppose them, they 
stood glaring ferociously at the intruders. It was with difficulty 
Douglas could restrain his men from firing ; gradually, however, 
the savages became quieter. They then produced the murderer, armed 
and painted from head to foot. The prisoner made a lengthy speech 
declaring his innocence. After parleying and replies, he was handed 
over to the white men, and taken on board to be tried at Victoria. 
The governor impressed upon them the advantage of keeping the laws 
of the country, which if they did not, they would be severely 
punished. Presents were distributed amongst them, which elicited 
promises of good behavior and loyalty, and the forces withdrew. 

MARINES AND BLUE JACKETS. The other murderer must next be 
followed to Nanaimo. The expedition, therefore, appeared before 
that village on the 10th and demanded a conference, which was 
promised for the following day. Governor Douglas was again in 
command. The steamer Beaver on this occasion towed the Recovery, 
which had on board a party of marines and blue jackets from the 
Thetis to assist if required. Mr. J. W. McKay, who was at the time 
in charge of the coal works at Nanaimo, was ordered to take twenty- 
one voltigeurs, and secrete them near the mouth of the river to 
watch the Indian village that no one should leave during the night. 
One of the sentries observed at daylight, a small canoe with an 
Indian paddling from the shore. He was at once pursued, and an 
alarm given on passing the Recovery. A launch from the ship soon 
followed, and overtook and passed the voltigeurs, overhauling the 
canoe with its solitary passenger, who, on examination, proved to be 


a scout sent to warn a neighboring tribe. From him they received 
particulars as to the whereabouts of the murderer. 

RANSOM OFFERED IN FURS. Early in the morning the natives 
arrived at the Beaver with large quantities of furs, which they offered 
to give up in place of the murderer. They were informed that no 
amount of property could be taken as a price of the crime. The force 
therefore landed to search the village. They found it deserted, but 
did not touch any part of the property. Soon afterward the chief 
appeared, and after a short parley, the murderer, who was one of the 
chief's sons, was handed over to the marines to be tried at Victoria. 
Thus both were captured without bloodshed. They were afterwards 
convicted and executed at Victoria. 

ANOTHER DIFFICULTY. Not long afterwards a white man was 
shot at by a Cowichin Indian, but not killed, although severely 
wounded. The occurrence brought Governor Douglas to deal with 
the case. Another party of men from the war vessel appeared 
opposite Cowichin to support the governor. The natives were 
requested to surrender the culprit, but refused, and showed a 
disposition to fight. The governor landed his forces and drew 
them up in position on the hill-side. The Indians formed nearly 
opposite. A parley was demanded. The chief came forward, but 
would not then come to terms. Governor Douglas, unwilling to shed 
blood if it could be avoided, ordered his men to encamp on the 
defensive, with mountain howitzer and muskets. 

TRIED TO SHOOT THE GOVERNOR. Next morning the chief was 
again summoned to meet the governor in front of his men. Instead 
of the chief, the culprit himself came forward, armed and painted, 
followed at a short distance by the chief and Indian warriors. He 
walked slowly and apparently hesitatingly, then suddenly raised his 
gun, levelled it at the governor and pulled the trigger. It missed 
fire, otherwise the governor would likely have been killed ; but he 
gave no order for his men to fire. The chief seeing this, gave orders 
to seize the offender, the governor calmly looking on. The would-be 
murderer was bound by the savages and handed over to the whites 
for trial. The trial took place immediately, and the Indian was 
hanged on the nearest tree, in full view of the tribe. The Cowichins. 
were quiet from that day forward. 




THE SAN JUAN BOUNDARY QUESTION which had been in abeyance 
since 1846, came forward prominently in 1856. In that year the 
United States Government appointed a commission to settle the 
disputed line of boundary which, following the 49th parallel of north 
latitude to the sea, was then to continue to " the centre of the Gulf of 
Georgia, and thence southward through the channel which separates 
the continent from Vancouver Island, to the Straits of Juan de 
Fuca." The British Government at the same time appointed com- 
missioners for the same purpose. In the autumn of 1856, Captain 
Prevost was first selected, and was ordered to commission H.M.S. 
Satellite, and proceed to Vancouver Island. It had been found that 
no accurate chart existed of the islands in the straits or of the 
channels ; so it was determined by the Admiralty that a surveying 
vessel should be despatched, iri the first place to make a complete 
survey of the disputed waters, and afterwards to continue the survey 
along the coasts of Vancouver Island and the mainland of the British 
territory. Captain George Henry Richards was selected and ordered 
to commission H.M.S. Plumper. 

THE BOUNDARY COMMISSIONERS. On the 18th of November, 1857, 
Captain Richards proceeded from Esquimalt up the Haro Strait 
and across the Gulf of Georgia to Semiahmoo, or Boundary Bay, 
to determine the exact spot where the parallel of 49 north latitude 
reached the sea-coast. The United States Commission consisted of 
Archibald Campbell, Commissioner, appointed 14th February, 1857; 
Lieutenant Parke, of the United States Topographical Engineers, 
Asffconomer ; two or three assistant astronomers, a doctor, naturalist, 
botanist, and a captain and subaltern in command of the military 
escort, which numbered about seventy men. They had already made 
their observations, and were encamped near the computed line of 
parallel, awaiting the arrival of the British Commission to confirm 
their work. On being tested, the spot was found to differ only eight 
feet from that fixed upon by the United States Commission. An 


iron monument was placed on the north shore of Semiahmoo Bay to 
mark the boundary. It was four feet high, four and a half inches 
square at the top and six inches square at the base ; the words 
"Treaty of Washington," on the north side, and "June 15th, 1846," 
on the south side. 

CAPTAIN PREVOST'S VIEW. The commissioners in discussing where 
the line should be located, could not agree on the channel referred to 
in the treaty. From the Gulf of Georgia east the line was run on 
the 49th parallel by the survey party, and marked by iron monu- 
ments at intervals of one mile, and stone monuments twenty miles 
apart. A large cairn was erected on the boundary line at East 
Kootenay. Referring to the views of the commissioners, Captain 
Prevost gave as his view, that, "by a careful consideration of the 
wording of the treaty, it would seem distinctly to provide that the 
channel mentioned should possess three characteristics : First, it 
should separate the continent from Vancouver Island ; second, it 
should admit of the boundary line being carried through the middle 
of the channel in a southerly direction ; third, it should be a navigable 
channel. To these three peculiar conditions the channel known as 
Rosario Straits most entirely answers." 

MR. CAMPBELL'S CONTENTION. The United States commissioner 
contended that, according to the latest surveys, the Canal de Haro 
was "pronounced the widest, deepest and best channel," besides being 
a much shorter communication between the Pacific Ocean than that 
by the way of Rosario Strait. The correspondence on this subject 
was protracted and voluminous. The British authorities claimed that, 
as the Hudson Bay Company had occupied the Island of San Juan 
since 1843, it properly belonged to Vancouver Island, and that, if 
Rosario Strait was considered too far south, there was a middle 
channel which could be adopted as the line of boundary between the 
British possessions and the United States. The discussion continued 
for two years, during which time about thirty squatters claiming to 
be United States citizens settled on San Juan. 

THE CENTRAL CHANNEL. The result of the survey in which Captain 
Richards had been engaged, showed that in addition to the Rosario 
Strait and to the Haro Channel, a third navigable channel existed 
which connected Fuca Straits with the Gulf of Georgia. As soon as 
this was made known to the British Government, and in view of the 
difference of opinion between the commissioners as to which of the 
already mentioned channels should become the boundary, Lord 



Russell, then head of the foreign office, on August 24th, 1859 r 
addressed a despatch to Lord Lyons, the British minister at Wash- 
ington, in which he proposed a compromise by adopting the central 
channel. The commissioners, Messrs. Richards and Campbell, finding 
that neither was prepared to defer to the arguments of the other, 
and that under the circumstances it was useless to continue their 
correspondence on the subject, signed, on 3rd December, 1867, a 

minute recording their dis- 
agreement, and adjourning 
their proceedings until cir- 
cumstances should render it 
necessary for them to take 
further steps. 

LORD RUSSELL, in the de- 
spatch referred to, says : 

" The Earl of Aberdeen, 
to whom I am referred, in- 
forms me that he distinctly 
remembers the general tenor 
of his conversations with 
Mr. McLane on the subject 
of the Oregon boundary, and 
it is certain that it was the 
intention of the treaty to 
adopt the mid-channel of 
the straits as the line of de- 
marcation without any re- 
ference to islands, the posi- 
tion and indeed the very 
existence of which had 
hardly at that time been 
accurately ascertained ; and 
he has no recollection of any 
mention having been made 

during the discussion of the Canal de Haro, or, indeed, p,ny other 
channel than those described in the treaty itself. 

" Her Majesty's Government trust that, as between this country 
and the United States, the day for tedious arbitrations, and still more 
for hostile demonstrations, is gone by ; they see no reason why this, 
and, indeed, any other question which may, from time to time, arise, 
should not be settled by direct and friendly communication between 
the two governments. . . . The third channel as reported by 
Captain Richards, answers in respect to its central position and 
southerly direction, to the channel described in the treaty ; and 
assuming it to have been the intention of the plenipotentiaries that 



the several channels connecting the Gulf of Georgia with Fuca 
Straits should be considered for the purpose of the treaty as one 
channel, it may fairly be argued that this central passage would not 
only satisfy the requirements of the treaty, but would divide between 
the two countries, in proportions which each party might consent to, 
the cluster of islands by which the channel is intersected. 

"The advantage of such a line would indeed be with the United' 
States, for there are only three islands of any territorial importance 
situated between the Haro Channel and Rosario Straits, viz., Orcas 
and Lopez Islands, and the Island of San Juan ; and by the adoption 
of the central channel a.s the boundary line, the first two named 
islands would belong to the United States, while only the Island 
of San Juan would remain to Great Britain. Your Lordship will 
accordingly propose to the United States Government that the 
boundary line shall be the middle channel between the Continent of 
America and Vancouver Island . . . thus denned: 'Starting 
from the north in the parallel 48 50' north, and the meridian 123 
longitude west from Greenwich (as laid down on the accompanying 
chart), the mid-channel would proceed due south, passing half way 
between Patos Island on the east, and Point Saterina on the west.' 
It will thus be observed that the meridian of 123 longitude west 
from Greenwich, starting from the north in the parallel 48 50', is 
assumed as the boundary, and is only departed from when forced to 
do so by the physical interference of the islands. 

" This middle channel, though inferior in some respects to the Haro 
Channel or to Rosario Straits, is described by Captain Richards as 
being perfectly safe for steamers, and also, under ordinary circum- 
stances, navigable for sailing vessels. Her Majesty's Government, 
however, do not consider this point as of much importance, since their 
proposition only extends to making this channel the line of boundary, 
and they do not propose to alter in any way that stipulation of the 
treaty which secures to the shipping of both countries the free 
navigation of the whole of the channels and the straits a stipulation 
advantageous to both parties, and which her Majesty's Government 
cannot doubt that the Government of the United States will agree 
with them in thinking, must, under all circumstances, be maintained. 

"It appears to her Majesty's Government that a boundary line 
traced through the above mentioned channel, likewise recommends 
itself for adoption as being in accordance with the principles which 
regulated the division between the two countries in the Lower 
St. Lawrence. 

" Her Majesty's Government further submit to the Cabinet of 
Washington, whether, to a view to mutual convenience, it might not 
be desirable that the small promontory known as Point Roberts, 
should be left to Great Britain. The point is of no intrinsic value 
to either Government ; but its possession by the United States will 
have the effect of detaching an isolated spot of small dimensions from 
the more convenient jurisdiction of the British colony. As the 


Government of the United States will obtain under the proposal now- 
made the more valuable portion of the islands in the straits, her 
Majesty's Government consider that the retention of Point Roberts 
can hardly be an object with them. 

" There is one other consideration to which I would wish to draw 
the attention of the Government of the United States. Irt the 
discussions between Lord Ashburton and Mr. Webster, which 
resulted in the treaty of 1842, the American plenipotentiaries argued 
upon the relative importance to the two countries of the territory 
then in dispute. Her Majesty's Government admitted the value of 
that argument and acted upon it. The same language was employed 
in 1846 upon the Oregon question, and on both occasions the United 
States obtained the larger portion of the territory in dispute, their 
plenipotentiaries successfully arguing that it was of greater value to 
the United States than to Great Britain. 

" Upon the present occasion this state of things is reversed. The 
adoption of the central channel would give to Great Britain the 
Island of San Juan, which is believed to be of little or no value 
to .the United States, while much importance is attached by 
British colonial authorities, and by her Majesty's Government, to its 
retention as a dependency of the colony of Vancouver Island. 

" Her Majesty's Government must, therefore, under any circum- 
stances, maintain the right of the British crown to the Island of San 
Juan. The interests at stake in connection with the retention of that 
island are too important to admit of compromise, and your Lordship 
will, consequently, bear in mind that whatever arrangement as to the 
boundary line is finally arrived at, no settlement of the question will 
be accepted by her Majesty's Government which does not provide for 
the Island of San Juan being reserved to the British Crown. 

" Her Majesty's Government hope that the United States Govern- 
ment will appreciate the arguments you are instructed to employ, 
and the spirit in which you will advance them ; and her Majesty's 
Government will not permit themselves to believe that the negotiation 
can, under such circumstances, fail of a successful issue. 

" It may be proper, however, that you should make the Government 
of the United States understand that this proposal of compromise, 
which you are thus instructed to lay before them is made without 
prejudice to the claim which her Majesty's Government consider 
themselves justified in maintaining to the Rosario Channel as the true 
boundary between her Majesty's possessions and those of the United 
States. They offer the compromise in the hope that its acceptance by 
the Government of the United States may obviate any further 
discussion on this subject ; but, if it is rejected, they reserve to them- 
selves the right to fall back on their original claim to its full extent." 

SQUATTERS ON SAN JUAN. Whilst the boundary surveys were being 
made under the joint superintendence of Commissioners Campbell and 
Prevost, other events were transpiring of a character which, but for 


the tact and forbearance of Governor Douglas, and the officers of the 
war ships at Esquimalt, and also of Lieutenant-General Winfield Scott, 
Commander-in-Chief of the United States army, might have plunged 
the two neighboring nations in war. San Juan Island, as is already 
mentioned, had been occupied since 1843 by the Hudson Bay 
Company, and at the time under review had on the island a stock 
of five thousand sheep, a number of horses, cattle and pigs, and had 
thus by occupation gained a right to the land. Attempts had been 
made from time to time by squatters from the United States side to 
establish themselves on the island, but their presence was not desired 
by the parties in charge of the Hudson Bay Company's property. 

In 1851, W. J. Macdonald (now Senator 
Macdonald) arrived at Victoria, round Cape 
Horn, in the bark Tory, Captain Duncan. 
He was, within a couple of months afterwards, 
sent by the Hudson Bay Company to San 
Juan Island, to establish a salmon fishery 
there. Indians were the principal fishermen. 
During his stay on the island, a schooner 
belonging to the United States, Captain 
Balch, master, arrived and anchored in the 
harbor. Mr. Macdonald boarded the vessel 


and informed the captain that he was not 

permitted to trade on the island or fish in the adjacent waters. He 
made no demur, but departed the same afternoon. 

COLLECTORS SANKSTER AND EHEY. When Oregon was divided in 
1853, the 7iorthern portion became the State of Washington, but in 
1852, the Oregon legislature had organized Whidbey Island and the 
Haro Archipelago into a district called Island County. A collector 
of customs, I. N. Ebey, for the Puget Sound district, in 1854, took it 
upon himself to visit the Island of San Juan to collect customs dues 
there for the United States. He found on the island CHARLES JOHN 
GRIFFIN, a clerk of the Hudson Bay Company, who refused to 
acknowledge Collector Ebey's authority, stating that the island 
belonged to the colony of Vancouver Island, and that he himself was 
a colonial justice of the peace. Mr. Griffin at once reported the 
case to Governor Douglas, who in company with Mr. Sankster, 
collector at the port of Victoria, proceeded on the Company's steamer 
Otter to San Juan. Sankster landed and met Ebey, informing him 
that he should seize all vessels and arrest all persons found navigating 


the waters west of Rosario Strait and north of the middle of the 
Strait of Fuca. 

THE Two NATIONAL FLAGS UNFURLED. After a warm discussion, 
Ebey concluded that he would appoint a deputy collector on the 
island and leave him there, and it would be seen who would interfere 
with him in the discharge of his duties. Sankster invited Ebey to 
go on board the Otter and confer with Governor Douglas on the 
subject. The invitation was declined. The British flag was then 
brought by Sankster on shore, and hoisted on the quarters of the 
Hudson Bay Company. Collector Ebey unfurled the United States 
revenue flag, which he had in his boat. A boat's crew was landed 
from the Otter, with whom Sankster remained on the island. 
Governor Douglas returned in the Otter to Victoria. 

SHEEP SOLD FOR TAXES. Next morning Ebey swore in his deputy, 
'Henry Webber, in presence of Griffin and Sankster. He then 
returned to Puget Sound, leaving Webber in charge as deputy 
collector, who remained on San Juan Island about a year, when fear 
of the northern Indians caused him to leave. The property on San 
.Juan Island was duly assessed by an officer from Puget Sound, whose 
duty was to appraise the property of u Island County." The 
collections were not enforced until March 18th, 1855, when Elias 
Barnes, sheriff" of Whatcom, seized and sold at auction thirty or more 
of the sheep belonging to the Hudson Bay Company the legislature 
of Washington State having, in 1854-5, passed an Act attaching 
San Juan and the adjacent islands to Whatcom County. For this 
seizure a claim of about $15,000 was subsequently presented by the 
Company. The bill was made out by Griffin for thirty-four imported 
rams, seized and sold, estimated worth $3,750 : and the balance for 
losses sustained in consequence of the violent acts of Sheriff Barnes 
in driving the sheep into the woods, and the cost of collecting such 
as were not altogether lost. 

THOSE EXTREME PROCEEDINGS called forth a communication from 
Governor Stevens, in 1855, to the Secretary of State, who issued 
instructions in reply that all the territorial officers should abstain 
from such acts, where land was in dispute, as were calculated to 
provoke conflicts, and that the colonial Government should observe 
the same rule. There was a deep-rooted enmity between the Indians 
and the representatives of the United States, not only on the island, 
but on the Washington mainland. Webber was succeeded by Oscar 
Olney, who only remained but a few months. Paul K. Hubbs next 


became deputy collector, but each of those " Boston men " had to 
.apply at different times to Mr. Griffin, who as British magistrate 
always cheerfully protected them in the time of difficulty. Collector 
Ebey was killed in a scrimmage with the Indians at Bellingham Bay, 
in 1857. 

Company had on San Juan Island, besides the chief clerk, Griffin, 
eighteen servants ; the squatters representing the United States 
numbered twenty-nine. They, or a majority of them, had drifted 
thither from the Fraser mines, and were not, generally speaking, a 
very desirable class of settlers ; they, however, took advantage of the 
undecided state of affairs in San Juan to take up their abode there. 
Describing the heterogeneous population in Victoria about the same 
period, Commander Mayne, in his " Four Years in British Columbia 
and Vancouver Island," says : " The new-found mineral wealth of 
British Columbia had attracted from California some of the most 
reckless rascals that gold has ever given birth to. Strolling about 
the canvas streets of Victoria might be seen men whose names were 
in the black book of the Vigilance Committee of San Francisco, and 
whose necks would not, if they had ventured them in that city, been 
worth an hour's purchase." 

DOUBTFUL CHARACTERS. Some such characters doubtless were 
numbered amongst the United States settlers on San Juan Island, 
on whose account it was said to be necessary to land United States 
military for their protection. At all events, the sheriff of Whatcom 
County continued regularly to make his assessments, until they 
amounted to $935. The collection, however, was not again enforced ; 
but the United States inspector of customs was on hand to keep 
account of goods landed, vessels arriving, etc. Affairs culminated 
on the arrival of Brigadier-General W. S. Harney, in command of 
the military department of Oregon, and his subordinates, Lieutenant- 
Colonel Silas Casey, of the 9th Infantry, and Captain George E. 
Pickett, of that regiment. 

GENERAL W. S. HARNEY. The brigadier-general, "a bellicose 
patriot," had been employed in what is termed in the Western States, 
^suppressing" Indians, and had won great renown and popularity 
among the wild settlers and squatters of the west, towards whom lie 
had long acted the part of a patron and protector. The wild guerilla 
war in which he had been engaged, consisting chiefly in destroying 
bands of Indians whenever met with, says Viscount Milton, had 


evidently caused him to forget the lessons in international law which 
he learnt at West Point, and he appears to have considered that a. 
British colony might be "improved" off the face of the earth, as 
easily and with as little ceremony as a tribe of Indians could be 

L. A. CUTLER'S PIG. A very trifling incident occurred on San- 
Juan Island, in June, 1859, which, as has already been intimated, 
but for the forbearance of both civil and military authorities at 
Victoria and Esquimalt, would have led to direful consequences. A 
man named Lyman A. Cutler, who claimed to be a citizen of the 
United States, had squatted on the island, and had partially enclosed 
a small patch of land, on which he had planted potatoes. It sc* 
happened that on or about the 15th of June, he shot, in the forest 
adjoining his house, a valuable hog belonging to the Hudson Bay 
Company, which he alleged had trespassed on the unenclosed ground 
he had taken possession of. In the course of the day, it chanced 
that Mr. A. J. Dallas, accompanied with Dr. Tolmie and Mr. Eraser, 
all leading men in the Hudson Bay Company, arrived at San Juan 
by the Company's trading steamer Beaver. 

On the following day the gentlemen mentioned, along with Griffin,, 
called on Cutler, who admitted the offence, and threatened to shoot 
any other of the Company's stock which should 
interfere with him. He refused to pay the 
sum demanded by Griffin for the valuable- 
animal which he had killed. Mr. Dallas and 
his friends returned to Victoria, and reported 
the occurrence to Governor Douglas, suggest- 
ing that he should communicate with the 
governor of Washington Territory on the 
subject. There is now nothing to show that 
Governor Douglas made any representation of 
the affair to the United States authorities,, 
but maintained friendly relations with them, 
not excepting General Harney, who, it is said, paid a complimentary 
visit to Governor Douglas in the month of July. The headquarters 
of the military department of Oregon was at Fort Vancouver, which 
was formerly headquarters of the Hudson Bay Company. 

PETITION TO HARNEY. Returning to his command, General Har- 
ney, on the 9th of July, landed at San Juan Island without any 
apparent object, as none of the troops under his command were- 

A. .1. DALLAS. 


stationed there. It was an opportune occasion for Cutler and his 
associates to pour into the willing and sympathetic ear of the general 
the tale of their woes and persecutions by hungry hogs and savage 
Indians. He was told that Dallas had come in an armed vessel to 
take Cutler to Victoria, when the fact was that Mr. Dallas and his 
friends knew nothing of the death of the hog until after they arrived 
on other business at the island. The result of the general's visit to 
San Juan was, that on the llth of July a petition was presented to 
him purporting to have been signed by twenty-two persons, styling 
themselves "American citizens on the Island of San Juan." 

HE INTERPRETS THE TREATY. As a matter of course Cutler's name 
was amongst the signatures, and also that of " United States Inspec- 
tor of Customs," Paul K. Hubbs, Charles H. Hubbs, and Paul K. 
Hubbs, jun. The petition contained a clause which was conclusive 
to the mind of the general. It said: "According to the treaty 
concluded June 15th, 1846, between the United States and Great 
Britain (the provisions of which are plain, obvious, and pointed to us 
all here), this, and all the islands of the Canal de Haro belong to us. 
We therefore claim American protection in our present exposed and 
defenceless position." This was just what General Harney appeared 
to want. He did not communicate with the British authorities, 
colonial or imperial, or with his commanding officer, or with the 
supreme government at Washington, but proceeded at once to detach 
a company of troops from Fort Bellingham to occupy the island, 
under Captain Pickett. The captain's instructions from the general 
concluded by stating: "In your selection of position, take into con- 
sideration that future contingencies may require an establishment of 
from four to six companies, retaining the command of the San Juan 

GENERAL HARNEY did not communicate with General Scott, Assist- 
ant Adjutant-General, New York, until the 19th of July, when he 
wrote him a letter containing the most extraordinary mis-statements, 
and containing charges against Mr. Dallas, without giving that gen- 
tleman an opportunity of denying them. He referred to the petition 
from the squatters on the island, through Mr. Hubbs, desiring a force 
to be placed upon the island "to protect them from the Indians, as 
well as the oppressive interference of the authorities of the Hudson 
Bay Company at Victoria with their rights as American citizens." 
" Mr. Hubbs informed me," continued the general, " that a short time 
before my arrival, the chief factor at Victoria, Mr. Dallas, son-in-law 


of Governor Douglas, came to the island in the British sloop of war 
Satellite, and threatened to take one of the Americans by force to 
Victoria for shooting a pig of the Company's. The American seized 
his rifle, and told Mr. Dallas if any such attempt was made he would 
kill him on the spot. The affair ended. The American offered to 
pay to the Company twice the value of the pig, which was refused. 
To prevent a repetition of this outrage, I have ordered the company 
at Fort Bellingham to be established on San Juan Island for the 
protection of our citizens, and the steamer Massachusetts is directed 
to rendezvous at that place with a second company to protect our 
interests in all parts of the Sound." 

MR. GRIFFIN'S LETTER AND REPLY. Captain Pickett landed on 
the 18th of July, but, strange to say, no official account of his having 
landed appears in the documents furnished to the Senate. The first 
notice in American state papers of the landing of troops in San Juan 
Island is to be found in a letter addressed to Captain Pickett by Mr. 
Griffin, dated July 30th, which says : " SIR, I have the honor to 
inform you that the Island of San Juan, on which your camp is 
pitched, is the property and in the occupation of the Hudson Bay 
Company, and to request that you and the whole of the party who 
have landed from the American vessels will immediately cease to 
occupy the same. Should you be unwilling to comply with my 
request, I feel bound to apply to the civil authorities. Awaiting 
your reply, I am, etc." A reply was sent as follows: "MILITARY 
CAMP, SAN JUAN, W.T., July 31, 1859. SIR, Your communication 
of this instant has been received. I have to state in reply that I do 
not acknowledge the right of the Hudson Bay Company to dictate 
my course of action. I am here by virtue of an order from my 
Government, and shall remain until recalled by the same authority. 
I am, etc." 




VISCOUNT MILTON, writing on this subject, says: "The governor 
at Victoria received information of the hostile occupation of the 
island from Mr. Griffin, and the excitement on the receipt of the 
intelligence was great. It is due entirely to the temper and judg- 
ment of Governor Douglas that a collision did not at once ensue. 
He immediately placed himself in communication with Captain 
Prevost, the British commissioner, and, at his request, the latter 
went to San Juan in the hope of finding Mr. Campbell, the United 
States commissioner. On landing, he had an interview with Captain 
Pickett, who declared he was merely acting under orders, that he 
would prevent any inferior force landing, would fight any equal force, 
and would protest against any superior force being landed. He 
stated that he did not know whether the orders under which he acted 
came originally from Washington, but took it for granted they did, 
or General Harney would not have taken so decisive a step." 

INTERVIEW WITH CAPTAIN PICKETT. Captain Prevost then left, 
and reported to the governor, who, after consultation with Admiral 
Baynes, concluded that the case required further consideration before 
consenting to land an equal force upon San Juan or establishing 
a joint occupation on the island. He, however, directed Captain 
Hornby, commanding her Majesty's ship Tribune, to communicate 
with the officer in command of the detachment of the United States 
troops which had landed 011 the island, to inquire of him the number 
of troops under his command, with a view to landing an equal force 
of British troops, if deemed expedient. Captain Hornby, therefore, 
on the 3rd of August, having arrived at the island, proposed by. 
letter that a meeting should take place between Captain Pickett and 
himself on board the Tribune. Captain Pickett replied that he 
would most cheerfully meet him in his camp. Captain Hornby 
accordingly landed, with Captains Prevost and Richards, the British 


commissioners. An interview took place between them at consider- 
able length. 

REDUCED TO WRITING. The substance of the conversation during 
the interview was reduced to writing by Captain Hornby, and 
replied to next day by Captain Pickett, who inter alia remarked r 
" Your recollection of said conversation seems to be very accurate. 
There is one point, however, which I wish to dwell upon particularly, 
and which I must endeavor, as the officer representing my Govern- 
ment, to impress upon you, viz., that as a matter of course, I being 
here under orders from my Government, cannot allow any joint 
occupation until so ordered by my commanding officer, and that any 
attempt to make such occupation as you have proposed, before I can 
communicate with General Harney, will be bringing on a collision 
which can be avoided by waiting this issue." 

CAPTAIN PICKETT'S LETTER. On the same date, August 3rd,, 
Captain Pickett wrote to Captain Pleasonton, Adjutant-General, 
Mounted Dragoons, Fort Vancouver : " CAPTAIN, The British ships, 
the Tribune, the Plumper, and the Satellite, are lying here in a 
menacing attitude. I have been warned off by the Hudson Bay 
Company's agent; then a summons was sent me to appear before a 
Mr. DeCourcey, an official of her Britannic Majesty. ... I had 
to deal with three captains, and I thought it better to take the brunt 
of it. They have a force so far superior to mine that it will be 
merely a mouthful for them ; still, I have informed them that I am 
here by order of my commanding general, and will maintain mjr 
position, if possible. 

" They wish to have co-joint occupation of the island ; 1 decline 
anything of that kind. They can, if they choose, land at almost 
any point of the island, and I cannot prevent them. I have used 
the utmost courtesy and delicacy in my intercourse, and, if it is- 
possible, please inform me at such an early hour as to prevent a 
collision. The utmost I could expect to-day was to suspend any 
proceeding till they have had time to digest a pill which I gave them. 
They wish to throw the onus on me, because I refused to allow them 
to land an equal force, and each of us to have a military occupation, 
thereby wiping out civil authorities. I have endeavored to impress 
them with the idea that my authority comes directly through you 
from Washington. . . . 

THE CAPTAIN AS A PEACE-MAKER! " The excitement in Victoria 
and here is tremendous. I suppose some five hundred people have- 


visited us. I have had to use a great deal of my peace-making 
disposition in order to restrain some of the sovereigns. ... I 
must add that they seem to doubt the authority of the general 
commanding, and do not wish to acknowledge his right to occupy 
the island, which they say is in dispute, unless the United States 
Government have decided the question with Great Britain. I have 
so far staved them off by saying that the two governments have, 
without doubt, settled this affair. ... In order to maintain 
our dignity we must occupy in force, or allow them to land an 
qual force, which they can do now, and possibly will do in spite 
of my diplomacy." 

Dragoons wrote in reply, by order of General Harney, approving of 
Captain Pickett's action, and enclosed a letter from General Harney 
(August 6th) to Governor Douglas, to which the governor replied on 
the 13th of August, thanking him for the manner in which he 
communicated the reasons for occupying the Island of San Juan with 
a portion of the military forces of the United States under his 
command. He proceeded : 

" I am glad to find that you have done so under general instructions 
from the President of the United States, as military commander of 
the Department of Oregon, and not by direct authority from the 
Cabinet at Washington. You state that the reasons which induced 
you to take that course, are the ' insults and indignities which the 
British authorities of Vancouver Island, and the establishment of the 
Hudson Bay Company, have recently offered to American citizens 
residing on the Island of San Juan, by sending a British ship of war 
from Vancouver Island to convey the chief factor of the Hudson Bay 
Company to San Juan for the purpose of seizing an American citizen, 
and transporting him to Vancouver Island to be tried by British 

" I will explain, for your information, that the agents of the 
Hudson Bay Company hold no official position in Vancouver Island, 
nor exercise any official power or authority, and are as entirely 
distinct from the officers of the executive government as are any 
other inhabitants of Vancouver Island. To the reported outrage on 
an American citizen, I beg to give the most unhesitating and 
unqualified denial. None of her Majesty's ships have ever been sent 
to convey the chief factor or any officer of the Hudson Bay Company 
to San Juan, for the purpose of seizing an American citizen, nor has 
any attempt ever been made to seize an American citizen and to, 
transport him forcibly to Vancouver Island for trial, as represented 
by you. 

" Up to a very recent period but one American citizen has been 


resident on San Juan. About the commencement of the present year 
a few American citizens began to ' squat ' upon the island, and upon 
one occasion a complaint was made to me by a British subject of 
some wrong committed against his property by an American citizen : 
but no attention was paid to that complaint, out of consideration and 
respect to the friendly Government to which the alleged offender 
belonged, and whose citizens, I think it cannot be denied, have 
always been treated with marked attention by all the British 
authorities in those parts. With reference to San Juan in particular, 
I have always acted with the utmost caution, to prevent, so far as 
might lie in my power, any ill-feeling arising from collisions between 
British subjects and American citizens, and have, in that respect, 
cordially endeavored to carry out the views of the United States 
Government, as expressed in a despatch from Mr. Marcy, dated 17th 
July, 1855, to her Majesty's minister at Washington, a copy of which 
I herewith enclose for your information, as I presume that the 
document cannot be in your possession. 

" Following the dignified policy recommended by that despatch, I 
should, in any well-grounded case of complaint against an American 
citizen, -have referred the matter to the federal authorities in 
Washington Territory, well assured that if wrong had been committed, 
reparation would have followed. 

"I deeply regret that you did not communicate with me for 
information upon the subject of the alleged grievance ; you would 
then have learned how unfounded was the complaint, and the grave 
action you have adopted might have been avoided. I also deeply 
regret that you did not mention the matter verbally to me, when I 
had the pleasure of seeing you at Victoria last month, for a few 
words from me would, I am sure, have removed from your mind any 
erroneous impressions, and you would have ascertained personally 
from me how anxious I have ever been to co-operate to the utmost 
of my power with the officers of the United States Government, in 
any measures which might be mutually beneficial to the citizens of 
the two countries. 

"Having given you a distinct and emphatic denial of the circum- 
stances which you allege induced you to occupy the Island of 
San Juan with United States troops ; having shown you that the 
reasons you assign do not exist, and having endeavored to assure you 
of my readiness on all occasions to act for the protection of American 
citizens, and for the promotion of their welfare, I must call upon you, 
sir, if not as a matter of justice and humanity, to withdraw the 
troops now quartered upon the Island of San Juan, for those troops 
are not required for the protection of American citizens against 
British authorities ; and the continuation of those troops upon an 
island, the sovereignty of which is in dispute, not only is a marked 
discourtesy to a friendly Government, but complicates to an undue 
degree the settlement in an amicable manner of the question of 
sovereignty, and is also calculated to provoke a collision between the 
military forces of two friendly nations in a distant part of the world.''" 


To the foregoing manly and able communication, General Harney 
replied in an evasive and shuffling manner. In a letter to Colonel 
S. Cooper, Adjutant-General, Washington City, D.C., August 8th, 
he stated : 

"That the Island of San Juan has for months past been under the 
civil jurisdiction of Whatcom County, Washington Territory. A 
justice of the peace had been established on the island, the people had 
been taxed by the Company, and the taxes were paid by the foreigners 
as well as Americans. An inspector of customs, a United States 
officer of the Treasury Department, had been placed upon the island, 
in the discharge of his proper duties. The British authorities at 
Vancouver Island were aware of all these facts, and never attempted 
to exercise any authority on the island, except clandestinely, as 
reported yesterday, in the case of the pig which was killed." 

And continuing, says : 

" When Governor Douglas heard of the arrival of Captain Pickett's 
command at San Juan, he appointed a justice of the peace and other 
civil authorities at Victoria, and sent them over in the British ship 
of war Plumper, to execute British laws on the island. Captain 
Pickett refused to permit them to act as such, and I have now fully 
and fairly explained all the facts which have any bearing upon the 
occupation of San Juan Island, which was made an imperious necessity 
by the wanton and insulting conduct of the British authorities of 
Vancouver Island towards our citizens." 

A DOUBLE GAME. Such a letter does not reflect creditably on 
General Harney, who, in connection with it, ordered Lieut. -Colonel 
Casey, of the 9th Infantry, to reinforce the troops already on the 
island, and seemed to be playing a double game. Lieut.-Colonel 
Casey left Fort Steilacoom on the steamer Julia, on the 9th August, 
and landed on the island on the 10th. He reports on the 12th, and 
describes his landing in a dense fog. He says : 

" After hugging the shore for a few miles I was informed by the 
captain that we were but a short distance from Captain Pickett's 
camp, that it was difficult to get along on account of the fog, and 
that, moreover, the tide was so low that he would not be able to get 
up to the wharf at the landing for several hours. Finding ourselves 
in a smooth place near the land, with the coast so depressed at the 
point as to make the ascent from the shore easy, I landed the troops 
and howitzers, with orders to the senior officer to move them to 
Captain Pickett's camp. I proceeded on the steamer around to the 
wharf, taking with me my adjutant and a small guard for the 
howitzer, ammunition and other public property." 


READY FOR A BROADSIDE. Lieut. -Colonel Casey goes on to report 
how he found the Tribune with her fires up and guns pointed to the 
landing, "but they did not interfere with the landing of the freight;" 
although it was Captain Pickett's opinion that they would have given 
a broadside to the troops if landed just there. This may account for 
their being landed on the other side of the island on account of low 
water, which appeared deep enough to bring the Julia around to the 
wharf immediately after the men were landed. No time was lost by 
Lieut.-Colonel Casey in sending an officer aboard the Tribune, with a 
request that Captain Hornby would call on him at his camp to hold 
a conference. 

LIEUT.-COLONEL CASEY'S REPORT. Boundary commissioners, Mr. 
Campbell, in the Shubrick, and Captain Prevost, having arrived in the 
Satellite, went ashore along with Captain Hornby to call on Lieut.- 
Colonel Casey, who continues in his report pompously to say : 

" I informed Captain Hornby that I had landed that morning with 
a force of United States troops, and explained to him why I had not 
landed at the wharf under the guns of the frigate. I also said to 
him that I regretted that Captain Pickett had been so much harassed 
and threatened in the position he had occupied. I inquired of Captain 
Hornby who the officer highest in command was, and where he was 
to be found. He said it was Admiral Baynes, and that he was then 
on board the flagship Ganges, in Esquimalt harbor. I intimated a 
wish to have a conference with the admiral, and that I would go 
down to Esquimalt harbor next day for the purpose of the interview. 
Both the captain and the British commissioner seemed pleased. 

"The next day, accompanied by Captain Pickett (both of us in 
full uniform) and Mr. Campbell, I went down to Esquimalt on the 
steamer Shubrick. We anchored near the Ganges. I sent to the 
admiral, by an officer, the note marked 'A'. I received in reply the 
note marked 'B'. The note marked 'C' was taken on board by 
Captain Pickett, and handed to the admiral in person. The captain 
was courteously received , by the admiral. Governor Douglas was 
present in the cabin. After reading the note the admiral handed it 
to the governor. The governor inquired if I knew he was on board 
the ship. The captain replied that he had no reason to suppose I 
did, but that I had not sought an interview with him but with the 
admiral. The captain then informed the admiral that the steamer 
was then firing up, but that he would be happy to wait, should he then 
desire to give me the conference. It was declined, but the admiral 
reiterated his desire that he would be happy to see me on board the 
ship. I was of opinion that I had carried etiquette far enough in 
going twenty-five miles to see a gentleman who was disinclined to 
<rome one hundred yards to see me. . . . 

"I would advise that the general send an express to San Francisco 


requesting the" naval captain in command to send up any ships of 
war he may have on the coast. . . . The British have a sufficient 
naval force here to effectually blockade this island when they choose. 
. . . I request that five full companies of regular troops, with an 
officer of engineers and a detachment of sappers, be sent here as soon 
as possible." 

On the 14th, Casey further reported that the Massachusetts had 
landed her guns and ammunition, and that he had directed all the 
supplies to be brought from that port to Camp Pickett, and that the 
32-pounders should be placed in position as soon as possible ; from 
all which it would appear that Lieut.-Colonel Silas Casey was very 
anxious to bring on a war, and was preparing to sustain a siege. 

PREPARING FOR WAR. A reply was sent by Adjutant-General 
Pleasonton from Fort Vancouver, on the 16th, to Casey, approving 
of his action and stating that a detachment of engineers would be 
sent ; in the meantime to have platforms made for the heavy guns, 
and cover "your camp as much as possible by entrenchment, placing 
your heavy guns in battery on the most exposed approaches; the 
howitzers to be used to the best advantage with the troops, or in the 
camp, according to circumstances. Select your position with the 
greatest care to avoid the fire from British ships. In such a position 
your command should be able to defend itself against any force the 
British may land. The general has requested a naval force from the 
senior officer on the coast, and has notified General Clarke, as well 
as the authorities at Washington, of the existing state of affairs on 
the Sound. Troops and supplies will be sent you as fast as they can 
be collected. The general regrets, under all circumstances, your 
visit to Esquimalt harbor to see the British admiral, but is satisfied 
of your generous intentions towards them. He instructs you for the 
future to refer all official communication desired by the British 
authorities to these headquarters, informing them at the same time 
that such are your orders." 

"SPOILING FOR A FIGHT." On the 18th of August, General Harney 
sent a despatch to the Commander-in-Chief of the United States army, 
General Winfield Scott, at Washington, D.C., in which he represents 
proceedings at San Juan Island from his point of view, and sends a 
list of the British fleet at Esquimalt as consisting of 5 vessels of war, 
with 167 guns, 2,140 men, some 600 of which are marines and 
engineer troops, and that this force had been using every means in 
its power, except opening fire, to intimidate one company of infantry, 



but sixty strong. On the 14th of August, he reports, Colonel Casey 
had five companies with him on the island, and by the time he was 
writing four companies more would have arrived as reinforcements. 
General Harney, on the 24th of August, sent another despatch to 
Adjutant-General Colonel S. Cooper, at Washington, D.C., in which 
he commented on the letter of Governor Douglas of the 13th. 
repeating former mis-statements respecting Cutler and the slaughter 
of the pig, and the arrival of Mr. Dallas in a war ship, etc. Again, 
on the 29th, he wrote to Colonel Cooper, recapitulating much of what 
he had said already, bringing in the Hudson Bay Company and the 
northern Indians, comparing them to the East India Company,, 
which, he said, had crushed out the liberties and existence of so 
many nations in Asia, and committed barbarities and atrocities for 
which the annals of crime have no parallel. He characterized the 
statements or denial of Governor Douglas as "only a quibble." 

Another despatch is forwarded by General Harney to the same 
officer on the 30th, in which he states the troops and artillery on the 
Island of San Juan numbered 461 men, with eight 32-pounders, with 
Colonel Casey in command, and that " from the conformation of the 
island and the position occupied by the troops, the English could not 
remain in the harbor under a fire from the 32-pounders, but would 
be compelled to take distance in the Sound, from whence they could 
only annoy us by shells, which would be trifling. The English have 
no force that they could land which would be able to dislodge Colonel 
Casey's command as now posted." 

HARNEY SUPERSEDED. LORD LYONS, her Majesty's minister at 
Washington, had not heard of the proceedings at San Juan until the 
3rd of September, when he at once had a conference with Mr. Cass. 
On the 7th, the conversation which took place there was reduced to 
writing and sent to Mr. Cass. The subject was brought before the 
President of the United States, who expressed the greatest regret 
and surprise at the unauthorized and unjustifiable action of General 
Harney. Instructions were issued to General Winfield Scott to- 
proceed to Washington Territory to take command of the United 
States forces in that district, which superseded General Harney. A 
despatch was sent by Mr. Cass to Mr. Gholson, governor of Wash- 
ington Territory, desiring his co-operation. 

GENERAL SCOTT'S INSTRUCTIONS were dated 1 6th of September, 1859. 
He arrived at Fort Vancouver on the 20th of October, and next day 
had an interview with General Harney. On the 22nd he left for 


Port Townsend, and on the 25th October wrote to Governor Douglas, 
in which he submitted a proposition that Great Britain and the 
United States should each occupy a separate portion of San Juan 
Island, and that the number should not exceed one hundred men. To 
this Governor Douglas replied that he could not agree on the part of 
Great Britain to land troops on San Juan, without authority from 
the Government of her Britannic Majesty. On the 2nd of November, 
General Scott again wrote to Governor Douglas, enclosing a memor- 
andum of a " Project of a Temporary Settlement," which was in effect 
the former proposal of each nation to occupy the island until the 
two governments should have time to settle the question of title 

GOVERNOR DOUGLAS REPLIED on the 3rd of November to the same 
effect as in his former letter. On the 5th, General Scott informed 
Governor Douglas that the United States troops on San Juan would; 
be reduced to Captain Pickett's company of infantry, which had 
been sent there in July last. General Scott further ordered that 
Captain Hunt and his company and Assistant-Surgeon Craig should 
remain on the island until further orders ; and that Lieut. -Colonel 
Casey will cause the heavy guns to be replaced on board the propeller 
Massachusetts, to be returned to their former stations. Copies of the 
orders were sent to Governor Douglas, who expressed satisfaction at 
the change which had been made by General Scott, and informed 
him he would represent the case to her Majesty's Government. 

his command under the supervision of General Scott for some time. 
Indeed it was not until June 8th, 1860, that he received the following 
notice from the War Department : " Brigadier-General William S. 
Harney will, on receipt hereof, turn over the command of the Depart- 
ment of Oregon to the officer next in rank in that Department, and 
repair without delay to Washington City, and report in person to the 
Secretary of War." Before his recall he had interfered with Captain 
Hunt, who was withdrawn from the island, but afterwards restored 
with his company there. 

LORD LYONS TO MR. CASS. Captain Pickett, by Harney 's orders, 
was sent to relieve Captain Hunt on the 30th of April, 1860. As 
soon as that intelligence reached Washington, Lord Lyons wrote to 
Mr. Cass, Secretary of State, calling his attention to the change 
which had been made. * General Scott sent the following reason why 
he had substituted Hunt for Pickett, viz.: "Pickett, on landing on 


the island, issued a proclamation declaring the island belonged to the 
United States, and other points offensive to the British authorities, 
and as my mission was one of peace, I thought it my duty to substitute 
Hunt for Pickett. . . . Hunt (as our officers informed me) was 
remarkable for firmness, discretion and courtesy. It will be seen by 
Brigadier-General Harney's instructions to Pickett, of the last month, 
that Harney considers San Juan Island as a part of Washington 
Territory, and Pickett is directed to acknowledge and respect the 
authority of that Territory. If this does not lead to a collision of 
arms, it will again be due to the forbearance of the British authorities, 
ior I found both Brigadier-General Harney and Captain Pickett 
proud of their conquest of the island, and quite jealous of any 
/interference therewith on the part of higher authority." Mr. Cass in 
<his reply to Lord Lyons said : " The orders of General Harney, to 
which your Lordship called attention, have been read by the President, 
both with surprise and regret. . . . He has been recalled from his 

JOINT MILITARY OCCUPATION. Rear- Admiral Robert Lambert 
Baynes and Governor Douglas finally agreed to a joint military 
occupation of the island ; and on 20th of March, 1860, a detachment 
of Royal Marines, under Captain George Bazalgette, was disembarked 
on San Juan. In point of number they were equal to the company 
of the United States troops under the command of Captain Hunt. 
'They carried their ordinary arms only. The orders issued to Captain 
Bazalgette were that the object of placing them was for the protection 
-of British interests, and to form a joint military occupation with the 
troops of the United States. Captain Bazalgette was to place himself 
in frank and free communication with the commanding officer of the 
United States troops, that the most perfect and cordial understanding 
should exist between them, which the rear-admiral felt assured he 
would at all times find Captain Hunt ready and anxious to maintain. 

OTHER QUESTIONS OF IMPORTANCE to both Great Britain and the 
United States served, from time to time, to divert their attention from 
the settlement of the San Juan Island question. The 49th parallel * 
Boundary Commission closed in May, 1862. Correspondence of great 
length continued respecting the island boundary between the Govern- 
ments of Great Britain and the United States, during 1860 ; but when 
the civil war broke out in the United States, in April, 1861, the 
parties of the North and South stood committed to face a great war* 
before which all other controversies had to give way. Great Britain 


did not press the question of the boundary on the Government of the 
United States in that hour of difficulty, so it remained in abeyance 
until 1868. 

WHISKEY SELLERS CAUSE TROUBLE. The island continued in the 
joint occupation of the two governments. Captain Hunt filled his 
position faithfully, but fell in the good graces of the " United States 
subjects," who accused him of insulting the whole of the inhabitants 
of the island, and that his conduct was gross and ungentlemanly. 
They got up a petition to General Harney to have Hunt removed. It 
turned out that the trouble was with a few illicit liquor dealers, who 
lived by dealing poison to the soldiers, and who had no other stake 
on the island than that arising from their ill-gotten gains. The 
whiskey sellers (three of whose names were on the petition) were 
banished from the island. Captain Gray, some time afterwards,, 
succeeded Captain Hunt. He got into trouble with Jared C. Brown, 
deputy marshal ot Port Townsend, who complained to Secretary o 
State Seward that Captain Gray refused to be arrested. The deputy 
marshal was met by Gray's men, who supported their captain in the 
charge against him, which was that he had ejected from the island a 
troublesome squatter who had built a fence between the military post, 
and the landing. The process was returned "unserved." 

claims, the naturalization question, the fishery question and the 
reciprocity treaty with Canada, each came up in the interim. In 
February, 1868, Mr. Seward, in compliance with a resolution of the 
United States senate of 18th December, 1867, presented a report, 
together with a number of papers known as "American State 
Papers," in which reference was made to the Island of San Juan. A 
protocol was signed at London on the 17th of October, 1868, by Lord 
Stanley and Reverdy Johnson, agreeing to refer the location of the 
boundary line to some friendly sovereign according to the treaty of 
1846. The President of the Federal Council of the Swiss Republic- 
was named as arbitrator. Lord Clarendon having succeeded Lord 
* Stanley at the foreign office, another convention was held, embodying 
certain amendments, but nominating the former arbitrator. A new 
treaty was signed by Clarendon and Reverdy Johnson, January 14th, 
1869. When it was brought before the senate in April for ratifica- 
tion, it was decided by that body to defer further consideration until 
the next session, to open in December, 1869. The proviso of the 
United States constitution which requires the assent of the senate to- 


the ratification of a treaty by the president, may be used to place the 
negotiating party in an awkward and humiliating position. 

EMPEROR WILLIAM'S DECISION. Further delays kept the question 
in abeyance until 1871, when commissioners were sent to Washington 
to hold another convention, at which it was agreed that the San Juan 
Island boundary question should be submitted to the arbitration and 
award of Emperor William of Germany. The German emperor 
accepted the office of arbitrator. The case was laid before him with 
maps and documents, by the United States minister in Germany, Geo. 
Bancroft, and by the British charge d'affaires, Mr. Petre, who had the 
responsibility of presenting the arguments on both sides. Captain 
(afterwards Admiral) Prevost, the British boundary commissioner of 
1859, was also present in Berlin, to advocate his views. The award, 
was not made until October 21st, 1872, when, incomprehensible as it 
may appear, in view of the whole facts, it was given in favor of the 
United States. The people of British Columbia, though grievously 
disappointed, accepted the decision magnanimously. Had the 
Emperor's decision been the middle channel, as was proposed, it would 
have been a convenience to have kept possession of San Juan, and 
prevented the island from being used as a smuggling rendezvous ; yet 
the colony did not notice the difference, and continued to prosper 
without it. In a few weeks after the award was made known, the 
British troops were withdrawn from the island. The best of good 
feeling existed between both officers and men of both nations during 
their joint occupation of the island. 




GOLD DISCOVERIES. The summer of 1858 was an active and 
anxious time for Governor Douglas. Along with the ordinary 
business of the colony and the Company, came the San Juan 
boundary difficulty arid the gold excitement, which latter, of itself, 
as it developed, must have required an extraordinary amount of 
care and attention. The solicitude /of the home Government, as 
manifested in the admirable despatches from Lord Lytton, to have 
the new colony based on just^ad. liberal principles and in conson- 
ance with British law jjjftcTireedom is evident, and required a man 
of the ability of Douglas to carry them into effect so ably and 

THOMPSON AND FRASEB RIVERS. In 1857, the Hudson Bay Com- 
pany- had received, from October 6th to the end of the year, three 
hundred ounces of gold through their agents at the Thompson and 
Fraser Rivers. The officers of the Company at Victoria were aware 
of the auriferous wealth of those rivers. Governor Douglas, in a 
despatch dated December 29th, to Secretary of State Labouchere, 
.states, that "the auriferous character of the country is daily becoming 
more developed, through the exertions of the native Indian tribes, 
who, having tasted the sweets of gold-finding, are devoting much of 
their time and attention to that pursuit." Other parties from Oregon 
and Washington Territories had come north by way of Colville, and 
found their way to the junction of the Thompson and Fraser Rivers. 
They found several rich bars in that vicinity and worked them with 
good success. 

AUTHORITY REQUIRED. Hearing of this success, John Scranton, 
an experienced miner, McMullin, governor of the territory, and 
Secretary Mason, accompanied by Ballou, also a miner, and several 
others, proceeded to Victoria to ascertain the truth of the reports 
which they had heard. The reports were confirmed, and a procla- 
mation was issued by Governor Douglas, bearing the date of his 


despatch to Labouchere, declaring that, as the gold-bearing regions 
referred to at or near Thompson and Fraser Rivers belonged to the 
Crown of Great Britain, all persons were forbidden to dig or disturb 
the soil in search of gold until authorized in that behalf by her 
Majesty's colonial Government. 

THE NEWS SPREAD RAPIDLY. This information made the inquirers 
from San Francisco more anxious. On their return the news spread 
like wild-fire. Ballou, having been engaged in the southern mines, 
and also in the northern mines, partly as an expressman, forthwith 
made arrangements to start " Ballou's Express " from San Francisco 
to the Fraser River mines. Governor Douglas further reported to 
Labouchere, January 14th, 1858: "There is reason to suppose that 
the gold region is extensive, and I entertain sanguine hopes that 
future researches will develop stores of wealth, perhaps equal to the 
gold-fields of California the geological formation being similar in 
character to the structure of the mountains in Sierra Nevada." 

NATIVES JEALOUS. He also wrote on the 6th of April: "The 
search for gold up to the last dates from the interior was carried on 
almost exclusively by the native population, who had discovered the 
productive mines, and washed out all the gold, about eight hundred 
ounces, thus far exported from the country, and that they were 
extremely jealous of the whites digging for gold. In addition to 
the diggings before known on Thompson River and its tributary 
streams, a valuable deposit has recently been, found by the natives 
on the bank of the Fraser River, about five miles beyond its con- 
fluence with the Thompson ; and gold in smaller quantities has been 
found in possession of the natives as far as the great falls of the 
Fraser, some miles above the Forks." 

THE GOLDEN "AURORA BOREALIS." Thus the discovery became 
known and spread with astonishing rapidity. A descriptive writer 
says : " It is noised abroad that gold abounds in British Columbia. 
Then men everywhere throughout the world begin to- study their 
maps to see where is situated the favored isle that guards the 
auriferous mainland. California is to be outdone, as the rivers of 
British Columbia are larger than those of California. The glories 
of Australia shall pale before this new golden aurora borealis. As 
in California the precious metal was most abundant near the sources 
of the streams, and was thought by some to have flowed in with the 
streams from the north ; so in the north, it is now expected, may be 
found the primitive source where the deposits were originally formed. 


And so the settlers on Vancouver Island, on the Cowlitz, and on 
the Columbia, leave their farms ; then the servants of the monopoly 
fling off their allegiance ; the saw mills round the Sound are soon 
idle, and finally wave after wave of eager adventurers roll in from 
the south and east, from Oregon and from California, from the 
islands and Australia, from Canada and Europe, until the third 
great DEVIL-DANCE of the nations within the decade begins upon 
the Fraser." 

CREWS DESERT VESSELS. The San Francisco Herald of the 20th 
of April, 1858, recorded that the excitement was fully equal in extent 
to that which arose in the Atlantic States from the reports of gold 
discoveries in California in 1848-9. Several hundred persons had 
gone to Fraser River from Puget Sound. The excitement was much 
greater in Washington and Oregon Territories than on Vancouver 
Island. Crews brought vessels from San Francisco for lumber to 
Puget Sound, and then deserted them. From the interior of Cali- 
fornia all classes abandoned their occupations and made their way to 
San Francisco. In April the whole of the country was in a ferment. 
Hundreds from the northern counties of California took the overland 
route ; companies of men, numbering from four to five hundred, 
accompanied by pack trains, travelled by the interior route. They 
found it necessary to travel in large companies for protection against 

THE OVERLAND RouTE.-^The route taken was by Okanagan to 
Kamloops. A train of waggons drawn by oxen came from Portland, 
encamping at Dallas. The loads were provisions, and each waggon 
contained about three thousand pounds. The Columbia River was 
crossed at Okanagan by swimming the oxen and placing the waggons 
and freight on canoes lashed together. The companies which travelled 
by pack trains moved more rapidly than the " bull trains." Palmer, 
who organized the cattle train, made a second trip in 1859, going as 
far north as Alexandria and Lightning Creek. The oxen were sold 
for beef after arriving at their journey's end. Another route was by 
.Whatcom and Puget Sound, but the main body of miners came direct 
from San Francisco. 

WELL ORGANIZED. One of those companies from Oregon and 
California, which was organized under the leadership of David 
McLaughlin, remained at Walla Walla a few days to recruit. They 
had, according to Bancroft, about three hundred and fifty horses and 
mules, and numbered one hundred and sixty men, all well armed with 


revolvers, ninety rifles, besides other arms. Before starting, Mr. 
Wolfe, a trader from Colville, arrived at their camp and informed 
them of the hostile attitude of the natives along the proposed route, 
advising a thorough military organization. Four divisions were 
accordingly formed and placed under the command of James 
McLaughlin, Hambright, Wilson and another. The Walla Wallas, 
Palouses, Okanagans and other tribes were hostile. The party 
passed through the Grand Coulee to Okanagan. On their way over 
the Columbia plains, a German who had lagged behind was seized by 
the savages and killed. 

INDIAN FORTIFICATIONS. After crossing the Columbia, and travel- 
ling for two or three days, when near the boundary line on the east 
side of Okanagan River, the party came to a hill on which were rude 
fortifications, and Indians in force on each side of the road, which 
there had to pass through a canyon. McLaughlin discovered an 
Indian's head peering over a rock. The men took promptly to their 
work, and fought till night. None of the animals stampeded ; they 
and the trains were conducted to the plateau below. While the 
riflemen continued after nightfall facing the Indians, a detachment 
prepared rafts to cross the river, with the intention of flanking the 
savages in their defences and formidable fastnesses. 

FIRES AND COUNTER-FIRES. Three of the Californians were killed, 
and seven were wounded, but recovered. In the night the Indians 
set fire to the grass, and the gold-hunters set counter-fires, but neither 
party succeeded in burning the other out. Next morning the white 
men proceeded to bury their dead, and discovered that the Indians 
had abandoned their stronghold. It had about a hundred breast- 
works, each made to shelter one Indian. At the time of the attack 
-eighty savages occupied the places of shelter. 

THE PROWLING SAVAGES FOLLOW. Between two and three days 
after the skirmish referred to, another attack was made on the party, 
this time on the west side of Okanagan River. A hundred mounted 
warriors rode down upon them, with the intention of separating the 
party from their animals. The purpose of the savages was anticipated 
and prevented. After considerable delay and parley, peace was made 
with the hostile tribe, the Okanagans, and the gold-hunters continued 
their march without further delay. The prowling savages, with 
hostile and thieving intent, continued to follow them to a point 
within three days' march of Thompson River. That stream was 


reached twelve miles above its mouth. Wolfe, the trader, had sixty 
head of cattle stolen by the Indians during the trip. 

OVER THIRTY THOUSAND PEOPLE. According to the estimate of 
John Nugent, who acted as consular agent for the United States, in 
May, June and July, 1858, at least twenty-three thousand persons 
went from San Francisco by sea, and about eight thousand overland, 
making an aggregate of over thirty thousand in the course of the 
season. Out of this vast number, the same authority says they all 
returned to the United States before January, 1859, with the excep- 
tion of about three thousand. The emigration was encouraged by 
steamboat owners, who reaped a rich harvest by the excitement. All 
sorts of craft were engaged in the transport trade crowded and 
uncomfortable. A writer says : " The worm-eaten wharves of San 
Francisco trembled almost daily under the tread of the vast multitude 
that gathered to see the northern-bound vessels leave." Many of the 
adventurers were well supplied with tools, and brought plenty of 
money to invest in land and other speculations. The money, as a 
rule, was placed in the hands of the Hudson Bay Company, as the 
only safe in the country was owned by them in Victoria. 

GOLD DOST ON DEPOSIT. On the 20th of April, 1858, the steamer 
Commodore left San Francisco with the first party of four hundred 
-and fifty of those adventurers. Governor Douglas, writing to London 
of their arrival, says : " There seems to be no want of capital among 
them. About sixty were British subjects, sixty Californians, and 
the remainder Germans, French and Italians." Mr. Finlayson, the 
treasurer of the Hudson Bay Company, received such gold as they 
wished to deposit for safe keeping. He required that each man's 
gold should be placed in a sack and sealed, with the owner's name on 
it, and a receipt granted. When the owner wanted the money, he 
produced the receipt and the sack was handed over to him ; or if he 
wished to use a portion of the contents, he might take it out of the 
bag and put on a new seal. There was no counting of the money. 
Mr. Finlayson, in later days, referred with justifiable pride to the 
fact that not one instance of complaint or loss ever occurred. 

TOWNSEND AND WnATCOM. Before navigation on the Fraser was 
properly established, the Pacific Mail Company, of San Francisco, 
landed passengers at Port Townsend, in Puget Sound. Whatcom, 
also, was made a landing-place for the miners, and an attempt 
made to establish a town there. A trail was made overland to the 
diggings, but subsequently abandoned, when Fraser River was found 


practicable for large steamers. It was arranged that by payment of 
a royalty for each trip, United States steamers were permitted to 
enter the Fraser, and run from Victoria to Langley and Hope. The 
trail from Whatcom touched the Fraser at Smess, twenty miles above 
Langley. The fare being twenty dollars from Victoria to Yale, 
many of the miners provided their own boats, and it is stated that 
hundreds of them were never heard of after leaving Victoria, having 
been swamped in sudden storms or by treacherous tide-rips. Not a 
few returned to Victoria, after attempting to pass through the 
numerous channels of the Haro Archipelago, which required some 
skill to navigate them with safety or prevent getting bewildered 
amongst their tortuous passages. 

THE RATES OF PASSAGE from San Francisco were : first-class, by 
steamer, $65 ; steerage, $35 ; by sailing craft, from $25 to $60. 
Cornwalis estimated that up to the 20th June, 14,000 persons had 
embarked at San Francisco by steam and sail. Commander R. CL 
Mayne, of the Royal Navy, who was at Victoria and in British 
Columbia in connection with the Admiralty surveys during the gold 
excitement, had an excellent opportunity of knowing the exact state 
of affairs. He says : " The excitement in Victoria, I think, reached 
its climax in July. On the 27th of June, the Republic steamed into- 
Esquimalt harbor from San Francisco with 800 passengers ; on the 
1st of July, the Sierra Nevada landed 1,900 more ; on the 8th of the 
same month, the Orizaba and the Cortez together brought 2,800 ; 
and they all reported that thousands waited to follow. The sufferings 
of the passengers upon this voyage, short as it is, must have been 
great, for the steamers carried at least double their complement of 
passengers. Of course, Victoria could not shelter this incursion of 
immigration, although great efforts were made, and soon a large town 
of tents sprung up along the harbor side." 

As the bustle increased so did the work and responsibilities of 
Governor Douglas. Despatches to and from the home Government 
multiplied, and, whether sent or received, required thought and 
consideration. Thousands of natives also were attracted to Victoria 
which added to the confusion, and it was fortunate that the Hudson 
Bay Company understood how to manage them so well, and had them 
so much under authority. Reviewing the state .of affairs just then., 
Bancroft says, "the country was transformed, as by magic, from staid 
savagery to pandemonium." 


WAR VESSELS. Fortunately for Governor Douglas, there were at 
Esquimalt a large fleet of British war vessels. The Satellite and 
Plumper were engaged in making surveys of the coast and denning 
the various channels around the islands in the Gulf of Georgia. 
Admiral Baynes also arrived in the Ganges accompanied by the 
Tribune, The Otter and the Beaver, belonging to the Company, were 
also available, and were armed with boarding nettings, etc. The 
Satellite was stationed at the mouth of the Fraser, with revenue 
officers aboard to collect toll on vessels entering the river. The 
Plumper assisted in enforcing the regulations. It was necessary to 
establish some sort of government to maintain peace and order, and 
although Governor Douglas was only appointed to govern the colony 
of Vancouver Island, he assumed authority as being the nearest 
representative of Queen Victoria to the mainland. 

VISIT TO THE MAINLAND. A proclamation was issued on the 8th 
of May, 1858, warning all persons that "any vessels found in British 
north-west waters," not having a license from the Hudson Bay 
Company, and a sufferance from the customs officer at Victoria, 
should be forfeited. " To see for himself how the mining crowds were 
operating, Governor Douglas proceeded to the mainland. He was 
anxious especially that peaceful relations with the natives should be 
maintained. He knew from the history of mining in California that 
serious collision with the tribes might occur. The Indians argued 
that as they had received pay for their furs, they must also have pay 
for gold, and did not wish strangers to come into the country and 
carry it away from them. 

LICENSES GRANTED. On arriving at Langley, then the metropolis 
of the mainland, Governor Douglas found speculators taking possession 
of the land, and even staking out lots for sale. He also found 
sixteen canoes without license; they were seized, but released and 
passes granted on the payment of five dollars each. Goods found for 
sale by traders were seized and forfeited as contraband. . On his way 
to Fort Hope, he received letters from Mr. Walker, in charge there, 
stating that " Indians are getting plenty of gold, and trade with the 
miners. Indians' wages from three to four dollars per day. There 
were miners at Hill Bar, two miles below Fort Yale, making on an 
average one and a half ounces per day, each man. Eighty Indians 
and thirty white men were employed." A log house and store was 
built a short distance from the fort, and a boarding house opened a 
short distance beyond the fort. Thus it was evident that the fur 


trade in that region was ruined, as the Indians had caught the gold 
fever as well as the white miners. 

A STANDARD LICENSE. Fort Hope then became the most important 
place on the mainland, on account of its mineral surroundings. The 
governor found it necessary to establish mining regulations and 
licenses, as previous to his arrival the miners has posted regulations 
amongst themselves on Hill Bar. A claim according to their law 
consisted of twenty-five feet frontage ; but the standard license was 
granted on payment of twenty-one shillings by each miner, and must 
be carried on the miner's person, for access and examination. 
Sunday was to be observed. One claim, 12 feet square. To a 
party of two miners, 12 feet by 24 ; to a party of three miners, 
18 feet by 24 ; to a party consisting of four miners, 24 feet by 
24 = 576 square feet, beyond which no greater area would be allowed 
in one claim. 

PROVISIONS SCARCE. The governor visited several of the mining 
camps in the vicinity. He had a meeting at Fort Yale with several 
chiefs, and cautioned them as to their behavior towards the whites. 
Richard Hicks, an English miner, was appointed revenue officer at a 
salary of forty pounds a year to be paid out of the revenue of the 
country. Gold was plentiful, more so, the miners think, than 
formerly found in California. Provisions were scarce pork, coffee 
and flour, each one dollar a pound. Therefore permission was, on 
the governor's return to Victoria, granted to two steamers to carry 
provisions as well as passengers to the Fraser River diggings. The 
matter was made the subject of a conference, held 10th June, 1858, 
between the Council and members of the Assembly. The speaker 
pointed out that, as the Hudson Bay Company would not be able to 
supply the large number of people that would be at the mines in a 
very short time, it would be necessary and proper to allow vessels 
to carry provisions. 

created justice of the peace at Hill Bar. Several Indians were also 
appointed magistrates to bring to justice any members of their tribes 
who might be charged with having committed offences. Bands of 
natives were becoming troublesome and more opposed to the presence 
of white miners. Governor Douglas who always had great influence 
with the Indians, got matters quieted down. The miners who came 
in from California and Oregon by the Colville route, met with great 
opposition from the natives, whilst the Hudson Bay traders were 


allowed to pass through unmolested. It does not follow from this 
that the officers of the Hudson Bay Company instigated the attacks 
of the hostile Indians. On the contrary, it was through their 
influence that an Indian war was avoided on the British side of the 
boundary line. The real cause was the general antipathy of the 
Indians against the " Boston men," and that on the United States 
side of the line several engagements had taken place between Colonel 
Steptoe and the Indians of the Columbia. 

AN ENCOUNTER. In August the Indians had become so bold that 
on the 7th of the month they killed two Frenchmen on the trail above 
the Big Canyon. When the news of the outrage reached Yale, forty 
miners immediately organized under Captain Blouse, to force a 
passage to the Forks. On reaching Boston Bar, they united with 
about 150 miners who had gathered there. They had an encounter 
on the 14th of August, near the head of Big Canyon. The fight 
lasted three hours. Seven Indian braves were killed. The Indians 
were routed, and whether hostile or peaceable, were all driven out of 
the canyon. The company returned to Yale, where on the 17th two 
thousand miners attended a meeting to consider the best mode of 
dealing with the Indians. 

SNYDER CHOSEN LEADER. A leader was chosen by them, H. M. 
Snyder, whom they elected captain of the force. Over 150 men were 
enrolled under Snyder's leadership and his lieutenant, John Centras, 
who represented the French-Canadians. A small party of Whatcom 
men enrolled themselves under Captain Graham. On the 18th the 
whole force set out for Spuzzum, carrying a few days' provisions. 
They encamped at the Rancheria for the night. Their number was 
there augmented to about two hundred men. Snyder held a meeting, 
and represented the necessity for united action in order to bring the 
expedition to a successful and speedy issue. He also advocated con- 
ciliatory measures, and, after some argument, had a majority in 
favor of the Pacific plan, and was voted the recognized commander. 

BAD MANAGEMENT. Snyder, without delay, marched with his 
men to Long Bar, where the most troublesome of the natives were 
assembled. He held a parley with them, at which they declared 
they desired peace, so he concluded a treaty with them. A flag of 
truce (white) was sent, along with five natives, to a place about four 
miles distant, where Graham's party had promised to wait. Instead 
of honoring the flag, he took it and trampled upon it. The Indians 
retired, and Graham camped there for the night. Before morning 


an attack was made by the Indians on Graham's camp. He and 
his lieutenant were killed by the first fire. The Indians at once 
retreated, having apparently obtained sufficient revenge for the out- 
rage which they considered had been made on their flag. Snyder 
continued his march along the Fraser to Thompson River, returning 
on the 25th to Yale, having made treaties of peace with two 
thousand Indians between Spuzzum and the Forks. In the course 
of the campaign thirty Indians were killed, and they nearly all by 
the rifle company at the beginning of the fight. 

PEACE RESTORED. In the meantime Governor Douglas had pre- 
pared to make another journey to the mining region, with thirty-five 
sappers and miners and twenty marines from the Satellite, but on 
hearing of the result of Snyder's expedition, did not deem further 
interference necessary. The miners set to work again on their 
claims. Along the Fraser River they had no further trouble with the 
Indians, who rather assisted the magistrates in keeping order, by 
arresting gamblers and other outlaws that otherwise might have 
escaped the vigilance of the local officials. The trails towards .Lytton 
were then considered safe for travel, and were crowded with miners 
carrying their provisions and outfits towards the interior. Govern- 
ment affairs were progressing quietly at Victoria, notwithstanding 
the great stir caused by the numerous arrivals and departures which 
took place daily. 

A CONFERENCE WAS HELD at the Government House, on the 10th 
of June, 1858, between his Excellency Governor Douglas and his 
Council John Work and Roderick Finlayson and the following 
members of the Assembly : Messrs. Skinner, Yates, Pemberton, 
McKay and Dr. Helmcken. The subjects were : 

1. EXCLUSIVE TRADE AND NAVIGATION. With regard to the rights 
of the Hudson Bay Company, as to the exclusive right of navigation 
-and trade, Dr. Helmcken suggested that the license granted them 
referred only to trade with Indians and not to white men. His 
Excellency replied that at the time of granting the license there 
were no white men resident in the territory, and that therefore they 
did possess the exclusive right of navigation and trade. 

2. NAVIGATION LAWS. Whether the executive had assumed any 
authority over Fraser River, his Excellency said he had not 
assumed any such authority ; but as representative of the Crown 
he had taken measures to preserve law and order, and had made 
regulations enforcing the navigation laws of Great Britain. He 
had allowed persons to go up the river, and granted them licenses 
to mine; had appointed custom house officers and justices of the 


peace, and had called upon her Majesty's ship Satellite to assist in 
preventing any violation of the navigation laws. 

3. THE GOVERNOR'S A UTHORITY. On the point, by whose authority 
the "suffrances" to Fraser River navigation are granted, the gover- 
nor stated they were granted by him by virtue of the power vested 
in him as representative of the Crown, as well as by the consent 
of the agents of the Hudson Bay Company. The Speaker (Dr. 
Helmcken) suggested that the miners, having been allowed to go 
up the river, and the Government having in a greater or less degree 
assumed control of the stream, it would follow that these people had 
a right to be supplied witli provisions, exclusive of the Company's 
monopoly, and therefore that British vessels, duly cleared here, had 
a right to proceed up the river for that purpose ; and that if the 
Hudson Bay Company had neither the means nor inclination to 
supply the large number of people that would be at the mines within 
a short time, it appeared probable that starvation or serious calam- 
ities would ensue. It would therefore be necessary and proper to 
allow vessels to carry provisions. The governor replied that the 
matter had given rise to serious deliberation and attention. Already 
permission had been granted to two United States steamers to carry 
passengers and provisions, under certain restrictions. Necessity had 
compelled this action, and had also forced him to act more or less 
illegally, but not unjustly. Should an emergency arise, permits 
would of course be granted to other, vessels for like purposes, and 
every possible means be adopted for the prevention of suffering in 
the mining region. 

4. ADDITIONAL VIEWS EXPRESSED. Touching the future govern- 
ment of Fraser River, his Excellency said he could not make known 
the facts, as the matter was under consideration, but the regulations 
and stipulations would not interfere with the rights of the Hudson 
Bay Company, and the House of Assembly must recollect that what 
had been done was the conjoint act of the governor as executive, 
and the governor as part of the Hudson Bay Company ; and that he 
had been actuated by two motives : (1) To do full justice to the 
Hudson Bay Company ; (2) To promote, by every legitimate means, 
the welfare and prosperity of the colony. He was always willing to 
impart information to the House, and was pleased that the confer- 
ence had been asked. The deputation then withdrew. 





WATER SUPPLY. The House of Assembly was called together, at 
the request of his Excellency the Governor, to meet on July 3rd, 
1858. Present : Messrs. Skinner, McKay, Yates, Pemberton and 
Speaker Helmcken. A petition signed by Messrs. Peck, Anderson, 
Young and Pearse, was received and read. The petitioners proposed 
to form a company for supplying the town of Victoria with water, 
a-t one cent per gallon, provided that the monopo'y of supplying the 
town be granted to them for the term of fifty years ; at the expira- 
tion of which time all the property of said company should fall to and 
be vested in the corporation of the said town of Victoria. 

A DEFINITE SCHEME REQUIRED. After some discussion, in which 
the urgency of the case was allowed and the necessity for a supply 
of water admitted by all, Mr. Pemberton, seconded by Mr. Yates, 
proposed, " That this House is of opinion that an exact and definite 
scheme should have been proposed, with correct plans and estimates, 
showing its features and probable profits. The water company 
should also state all particulars as to its formation, the number and 
amount of shares and stockholders, and the amount of capital that 
would be deposited previous to obtaining any grant from the House." 
The resolution was unanimously adopted. 

REGISTRATION BILL. Mr. McKay asked leave to bring in a bill 
on the subject of registration of real estate. Leave granted. First 
reading, July 8th. The Speaker then informed the House of his 
intention, with their permission, to resign his present position, and 
trusted the House would elect an honorable member to till the chair. 
An explanation was given that the Speaker's resignation would cause 
a dissolution of the Assembly. The Speaker therefore agreed to 
continue to fill the chair until the next general election. 

THE ASSEMBLY MET AGAIN on the 8th of July. Present : Messrs. 
Pemberton, Yates, Kennedy, McKay, Skinner and Speaker Helm- 
cken. A petition from Messrs. Anderson and Pearse was received 


on the subject of water monopoly, setting forth the impossibility 
{in their opinion) of forming a company for supplying the town of 
Victoria with water, unless the House should grant such a body the 
privileges prayed for in their original application. 

THE WATER QUESTION POSTPONED. Mr. Pemberton, seconded by 
Mr. Skinner, moved, " That this House cannot re-enter upon the 
question unless the resolution of the House (on July 3rd) be com- 
plied with." The mover said that in all cases of companies being 
formed, plans and calculations were made showing the feasibility of 
the enterprise. The House could not enter upon such subjects with- 
out having accurate data upon which to found an opinion. The 
objects of government in such instances were to prevent any public 
or private losses by fraudulent or frivolous schemes. Moreover, it 
was beneath the House to pledge itself upon any private question. 
He was well aware that preliminary expenses were incurred, but 
such risks were unavoidable, and were part of the scheme. He was 
quite sure that the House would lend its assistance to any scheme 
which would tend to advance the prosperity and comfort of the 
colony. The resolution was unanimously adopted. Mr. McKay 
asked leave to postpone the first reading of the Registration of Real 
Estate Bill for ten days. Leave granted. The foregoing is a sample 
of how legislation was carried on at Victoria in the early days of the 
colony of Vancouver Island. 

THE PARLIAMENTARY WORK in 1858 does not appear to have been 
very onerous. The Assembly met a few times in July and considered 
the water question, and resolved that his Excellency be requested to 
"cause the springs and lands adjacent to the old well, which formerly 
supplied the town of Victoria with water, to be reserved for the 
use of the public," In committee the House further considered the 
petition of Messrs. Young, Anderson and Pearse, relative to a water 
company, and recommended " the House to grant a monopoly for the 
term of ten years, to a joint-stock water company proving itself the 
best qualified to supply the town of Victoria with water, in the 
most economical and satisfactory manner, and at the earliest period." 

HENRY TOOMY and his associates presented a petition praying for 
certain privileges, and liberty to form a company to supply water 
to the town of Victoria. Referred to committee at next meeting 
of the House. The necessity for a public hospital was discussed. 
There being a surplus of funds from the licensing of taverns and 
beer houses, returns were asked for, showing the revenue for the 


current year, and with the view of voting supplies for next year. 
The dangerous condition of some of the bridges and the obstructions 
to streets from building operations were discussed. Mr. McKay's 
Registration Bill was introduced. It proved to be a comprehensive 
and valuable document. Many pf its clauses are acted upon at the 
present time. The proposed salary to the registrar was not to exceed 

The House of Assembly held an important meeting on September 
23rd. Matters relating to streets, water and gas were discussed, and 
the Bill of Supply for the year was passed, as follows : 

" Whereas, it is necessary that certain sums of money, amounting 
to 3,000, be supplied for certain useful purposes within the colony, 
be it enacted by the House of Assembly of Vancouver Island, by 
and with the consent of his Excellency the Governor and honorable 
Council : 

"1. That 2,000 sterling be applied for the waggon roads in 
certain portions of the District of Victoria, viz., Wharf Street, 
from Victoria Bridge to the south end of Fort Victoria; Government 
Street, from the ravine to Humbolt Street ; Johnson Street, from 
Victoria Bridge to Government Street ; Yates Street, from Wharf 
Street tj Government Street. 

" 2. That 600 be applied to improving the road from Victoria 
Bridge to the hospitals at Esquimalr. 

"3. That 150 be granted for the use of the House of Assembly 
of Vancouver Island. 

"4. That the various sums mentioned above be paid out of the 
funds received from the licenses to inns, public and beer houses." 

Education was not neglected. The colonial school at Craigfiower 
was examined July 31st. The report says: "The governor, who 
has always been present on former occasions, was hindered from 
coming by business." The Rev. E. Cridge, assisted by the teacher, 
Mr. Clark, made the examination, which showed that the pupils had 
made a marked improvement since last year. , Prizes sent by the 
governor were given to Jessie McKenzie, William Lid gate, Christina 
Veitch and Dorothea McKenzie, in the first class, and four others in 
the junior classes. The girls of the school had prepared a present 
of useful needlework for the governor, which, with an address from 
them, was duly forwarded to his Excellency. The Victoria colonial 
school was examined on the 4th of August, by Rev. Mr. Cridge and 
the teacher, Mr. Kennedy. Good progress was reported, and prizes 
given to Daniel Work, William Leigh, James Pottinger, and others 
in the junior classes. 


AN IMPROMPTU SPEECH. When Captain Richards, the boundary 
commissioner, had arrived and was being received at the fort by 
Governor Douglas, on the 19th of July, the procession of officials 
was detained for a short time by the tiring of a salute. A large 
body of miners was present, and one of them asked the governor 
for his advice about their future movements. With that courtesy 
for which his Excellency was celebrated, he complied in a very neat 
speech. After referring generally to rumors, etc., he said : 

" I will tell you as my own settled opinion that I think the country 
is full of gold, and that east and north of the Fraser River there is 
a gold field of incalculable value and extent ; and, if I mistake not, 
you are the very men who can prove by your courage and enterprise 
whether my opinion be right or wrong. . . . Now go on and 
prospect, and in a few weeks you will be able to tell me what Fraser 
River is. Take mining tools and food in abundance ; you will then 
be independent of others, and may go to whatever part of the 
country you choose. I would not advise you to go beyond Fort Yale 
with your canoes, as the river is dangerous above that point ; neither 
would I advise you to take the Fort Hope road, as you cannot carry 
enough provisions to last you over the journey. The route by 
Harrison River is, I think, the best, and we are now preparing to 
get a road opened that way. . . . Let me say one word about 
the Indians. They are all friendly and all thievish, therefore have 
an eye to your things, and do not leave them exposed, for in that 
case the Indians will steal them. Get on with them as quietly as 
you can, and Government will protect you. Be careful of your 
revolvers, and be not too ready to use them in your own cause. 
The law of the land will do its work without fear or favor. There- 
fore appeal to it in all cases; let IT do justice between man and man; 
let IT defend your rights and avenge your wrongs. Now, my friends, 
go on and prosper ; there is hard work before you, and I hope you 
will be repaid with rich strikes and big nuggets. One word more 
about the views of Government. The miner who acts in submission 
to the laws, and pays the Queen's dues like an honest man, shall be 
protected in person and property ; and as soon as good and trusty 
men are found, measures will be taken for the conveyance and escort 
of gold from the mines to this place. Every miner will give in his 
own sack and his own weight, and have it addressed and sealed in 
his own presence, and get a receipt for a sack said to contain so much 
gold dust. It will be deposited in the public treasury at Victoria, 
and delivered to the owner on production of the deposit receipt. 
There will be a charge made for the expense of conveyance, but that 
will be a small matter compared to the security of your property. 
I now wish you all well, and shall not detain you by any further 


THE FREE PORT OF VICTORIA is referred to by a writer in the 
Victoria Gazette of the 24th of July, 1858. After stating that 
the United States Government prohibited all navigation of their 
inland Waters, loud denunciations were indulged in at a British river,. 
(the Fraser) being closed to their commerce. 

" They exact a tax of $5 per month," says the writer, "from foreign 
miners only, they impose a head tax on all foreign immigrants, and 
to crown all have legalized a heavy property and stamp tax ; nay, 
even a double tax on the merchants of San Francisco. 

" Artd now, what state of affairs do we find here ? Victoria a free 
port free from all duties, free from harbor and pilot dues, and per- 
fectly free for the mercantile interests of all nations on an equal 
footing. The land titles here are direct from the Crown a title 
which none can gainsay ; a simple tax of $5 per quarter is demanded 
from the miner (no distinction is made between the subjects of Great 
Britain and any other nation). You see here no array of policemen 
to enforce the due observance of the Sabbath, yet the Sabbath is most 
strictly observed. 

" Again the Hudson Bay Company keep constantly on hand a 
large supply of stores, which they cheerfully supply to the people 
at barely remunerative rates ; and it is conceded that but for the 
Company provisions would have been, ere this, at famine prices. 
Even now, and for weeks past, their stores have been crowded with 
purchasers, who admit that they can buy at thirty per cent, less than 
from the regular trades. 

" Were it necessary I could enumerate many other evidences, all 
tending to prove that the government of Vancouver Island is- 
administered with an impartiality, consistency and wisdom which 
was not to have been anticipated. As regards Governor Douglas* 
during the extraordinary excitement which has existed here, his 
administration has been the theme of universal admiration, and so 
far as his acts being ' repulsive to the people,'. he is, without excep- 
tion, the most popular man on the island. He is admired for the 
ease and facility with which he causes the laws to be strictly, though 
quietly, enforced, not only for his affability and courtesy to stranger>, 
but he is likewise esteemed as a gentleman au fait in all emergencies, 
and in every way qualified to represent and guard the important 
interests committed to his charge." 

PUBLIC NOTICES. The appointment of Alexander C. Anderson as 
collector of customs at Victoria, is noticed in the Victoria Gazette 
of July 3rd, and on the 15th of July he publishes the following 
notice : " To avoid misapprehension, miners are informed that there 
is no restriction on the amount of provisions that they are allowed 
to take up the Fraser River for their own private use. Everyone 
is permitted to take all his necessary supplies without let or hind- 


ranee." Amongst other notices in the Gazette about that time, it is 
stated that a letter designed to go to New York requires to have 
twelve and a half cents paid on it in Victoria, and to have in 
addition a United States stamp on the envelope; that lumber had 
risen in price to $110 per thousand feet, on account of the large 
number of buildings being erected ; that a license for selling and 
retailing all kinds of liquor was 120, for wholesale dealing in 
liquors 100, and for retailing beer 50 per annum ; that 1,900 
passengers had arrived at Esquimalt, in the Sierra Nevada, from 
San Francisco, on the 1st of July ; that Governor Douglas had 
ordered two fire engines from San Francisco ; that the overland 
travel through Yreka, via Colville, for the Fraser River country, 
was estimated to average 100 per day, and that about 2,500 had 
left by that route up to the 10th of July; that upwards of 3,500 
mining licenses had been granted in Victoria up to the 10th of July, 
1858. The issue of July 24th says: "Building is going on briskly 
in all quarters of the town. Our only brick building is nearing 
completion, and is shortly to be opened as a hotel." [This building has 
been used as a hotel to the present day. Its moss-covered roof and 
weather-worn chimney tops indicate its age of nearly half a century, 
but the walls will last as long as they are kept covered with paint 
and " pointed," as the bricks now are. ED.] 

SALE OF TOWN LOTS. An extensive sale of Esquimalt town lots 
took place, by auction, on the 12th of July. Twenty-five lots were 
sold that day, the prices ranging from $1,450, the highest, which 
was paid by Ah Gim, a Chinese merchant from San Francisco ; 
the lowest brought $375. Seven Chinese were the principal buyers. 
The lots measured 30x100 feet. Terms : Ten per cent, at sale, 
remainder of first half of price when papers were given, and the 
balance (one-half) at the expiration of three months, without interest. 

lowing description of the route to the Upper Fraser, between Forts 
Hope and Yale, sixteen miles, a tolerably fair idea may be had of 
what the miners had to put up with in their search after gold. The 
writer states : 

"There is but little mining on the river until about four miles 
above Fort Hope, where bars begin to form, diverting the channel 
of the stream and affording a field for mining operations. There 
are probably 2,000 men engaged in mining on the river between 
Forts Hope and Yale (July 28th), on Gassy Bar, Emory's Bar, Hill's 


Bar, Texas Bar, and other places. T. H. Moreland, a Californian 
miner, said he had been working six weeks and averaged $50 a day, 
and had never taken out less than an ounce ($16) in any one day, 
and some days as much as $90. Beyond doubt very rich strikes have 
been made on Hill's, Emory's and Texas claims. They can only be 
bought at very high prices. 

" At all the bars we passed, preparations were being made for the 
coming winter, in the erection of substantial log houses. At Hill's 
Bar I counted forty log houses already built, and several in the 
course of construction. In all the tents and houses that I examined, 
and I paid particular attention to the subject, there were flour and 
provisions enough to last its occupants from one to four months. 
There is no scarcity of provisions, nor any starvation at any point 
on the river that I have visi'ed which extends to New York Bar, 
two miles above Fort Yale. There may be some articles of luxury 
deficient, but I refer to the great staples flour, bacon, pork, beans, 
tea, sugar, coffee, etc. The miners generally are in good spirits and 
sanguine of doing well when the river falls. To be sure, there were 
a few discontented men persons unaccustomed to the rough life 
before them, and who set out with entirely erroneous ideas as to the 
country, and unprepared for the hardships and deprivations attendant 
upon living in a wild, barren territory, peopled with rude savages. 
Such, no doubt, will soon return to their old homes, carrying tales 
of discouragement and dismay, but the old, experienced miner and 
hardy pioneer will stay, and, I honestly believe and fervently hope, 
do exceedingly well." 

The description of a further portion of the trip furnishes additional 
interesting particulars : " We arrived at Fort Yale in a little less 
than nine hours from Fort Hope. The Indians charged us $6.50 for 
bringing us up $4 to the owner of the canoes and $2.50 to the 
other. They were exceedingly expert with their oars and well 
acquainted with the river, and gave us no trouble at all. I certainly 
never paid out any money which I thought more fairly earned. 
FORT YALE is situated on the west side of the river, on a bend, a 
mile and a half below the 'lower big canyon.' The bluff is some 
twenty feet above the water, and a heavily wooded 'flat,' or plain, 
extends back for a mile or more up and down the river. High 
mountains raise their tall and broken peaks on all sides, shutting the 
town completely in. 

"There are probably 700 or 800 people here, nearly all of whom 
are miners, living in canvas tents, and waiting for the river to fall. 
I saw no drunkenness or lawlessness of any kind. Everything was 
peaceable and quiet. A number of miners were at work on the 
river bank, with rockers, and most of them were making a living by 
washing the loose dirt and cobble stones. I slept at Mr. Johnson's (of 
Ballou's Express) tent that night, and breakfasted next morning with 
my old San Francisco friend, Henry M. Snyder, whom T found 
tenting a little way down the river. He gave me a good breakfast, 


consisting of fried salmon, bacon, hot bread and coffee, cooked by 
himself, and served in tin plates and cups each man sitting down 
tailor fashion on the ground. I had a sharp appetite, and did the 
fare full justice. 

" There is but one public eating-house in the town, and the invari- 
able diet is bacon, salmon, bread, tea and coffee, and the charge $1 a 
meal. No milk or butter is ever seen. The eating-house is kept in a 
log house partly covered with bark, and with a dirt floor. Every- 
thing is done in the same room, which is not more than 12 x 14, and 
consequently exceedingly cramped for space and as hot as an oven. 
The weather is warmer at Fort Yale during the daytime than I 
have found it at any place since I left Sacramento, Cal., but with 
cool mornings and evenings. 

" On Tuesday morning, in company with Mr. Snyder and a half 
dozen others, I started on foot up the river bank to visit the * lower 
big canyon ' one of the two worst places on the river till you get to 
the ' Forks/ the junction of the Fraser and Thompson Rivers, and 
twenty-two miles below the 'upper big canyon.' After clambering 
over logs and up the rocky sides of mountains for a half hour or 
more, cutting my boots so as to leave them valueless, wearing out the 
seat of my trousers slipping over the rocks, and tearing off my 
finger nails, we reached an elevation on the mountain-side which 
afforded an excellent view of the ' lower big canyon.' 

" On both sides of the river rise rocky mountains almost perpen- 
dicularly for hundreds of feet, so that, in some places, if a stone 
were dropped from their top, it would fall direct into the water 
without meeting any obstacle in its descent. In the centre of the 
river is a large island of solid rock, which almost chokes up the 
stream, leaving only about forty feet of space on each side for the 
water to pass through. The water being forced through these narrow 
-channels, by its immense weight and the momentum gained in its 
-descent along its steep bed, presses on with awful rapidity and power, 
roaring and seething like the ocean in a storm. Here all navigation 
ceases, not even the boldest and most reckless boatman daring to 
attempt its passage. 

"Just a little below the mouth of the canyon, on the opposite shore 
from Fort Yale, lies New York Bar, settled mostly by a party of 
New York and San Francisco boatmen chief among whom is the 
notorious Martin Gallagher, of vigilance committee notoriety, being 
one of the men expatriated by that organization from San Francisco. 
It is said some very rich strikes have been made on this bar. A port- 
Age of three hundred yards of both canoe and passengers, and then 
the river can be navigated until the ' upper big canyon' is reached, 
though with great difficulty, as there are three 'little canyons' still 
to be overcome. I understood at Fort Yale, that Mons. Rouhaud 
<fe Sons, French capitalists, have written to Governor Douglas, asking 
*he privilege of being allowed to run a ferry between the two ' big 
canyons' small stern-wheelers to be used. 


" On our return, about half-past noon, the town was thrown into a 
high state of excitement, upon hearing the report of a cannon and 
the screechings of a steam-whistle, and a rumor gaining circulation 
that a little stern-wheel steamer was on her way up the river. Every- 
body was soon on the lookout, and canoes were sent beyond the bend 
of the river, to ascertain the cause of the strange noises and the 
truth of the report. Soon we learned by the shoutings along the 
banks of the river and the continuous discharge of guns and pistols, 
that the report was true; whereupon, there was the greatest rejoicing 
and pleasure manifested by everyone, and powder was burnt amidst 
the wildest excitement. 

" In a few minutes, the Umatilla the pioneer steamboat on Eraser 
River above Fort Hope made her first appearance to the people 
of Yale, and was warmly welcomed. Before her plank was shoved 
ashore, a number of men were clambering up her sides, eager to get 
aboard. The Indians, too, partook of the enthusiasm, and seemed 
delighted at to them the novel spectacle. She made the passage 
from Fort Hope to Fort Yale in five hours, one hour of which time 
she was aground, but without any accident. Immediately after 
arrival a dinner was prepared on board, and a number of the 
principal inhabitants invited to partake of it. After dinner, exactly 
at thirteen minutes past three o'clock, she started on her first down 
trip. Desiring to be one of the passengers of the first steamboat that 
ever penetrated above Fort Hope on her pioneer trip, I put my 
blankets aboard. We came down like 'a streak of chain lightning,' 
with a very light head of steam, being precisely fifty-one minutes on 
the way. On her upward passage, she was welcomed by the miners 
on the banks of the river with shouts of joy, and the firing of guns 
and pistols all along the route. 

" At all places on the river, including Hope and Yale, there were 
no restrictions on trade, and merchandise of all descriptions was 
openly retailed to both Indians and whites. There were, however, 
but few stores, and the stocks of goods consisted chiefly of flour and 
provisions, mining utensils, etc. The Hudson Bay Company claim 
the exclusive right of trading on the river, and it is presumed will 
assert their right as soon as practicable. No doubt its inability to 
furnish the provisions, or fear of causing suffering, is the motive 
which has induced them to wink at this infraction of their alleged 
exclusive privilege. Whilst there is no immediate danger from 
starvation, the supply of the prime necessaries of life being sufficient 
co meet the present population for at least two months, still there 
are many articles, such as suitable clothing, boots and shoes, etc., 
which can scarcely be had at any price. 1 have no doubt invoices of 
dry goods, clothing, etc., would Tneet with a ready and profitable sale. 

" Probably not one in ten of the miners who own claims, or one 
in five of the whole number on the river, have ever purchased any 
license to mine ; and there is consequently much complaint on the 
part of those who complied with the law, and they are shown no- 


favor over those who refused or have failed to do so. It is only such 
as came up in the steamers that have purchased licenses those who 
came in canoes failing to do so. This discrimination has engendered 
much prejudice against the steamer Surprise, who in every case has 
insisted on her passengers showing their mining licenses, under penalty 
of being put ashore. To be sure, her officers were doing no more 
than their plain duty in fulfilling the terms of her ' sufferance' to 
navigate the river; but these things are not properly understood by 
everyone ; in a short time, however, it is to be expected, all these 
things will be remedied to the mutual advantage of all parties. 

"The Indians, as high up as the ' upper big canyon' (twenty-five 
miles above Fort Yale), are not at all troublesome, but on the con- 
trary, kind and willing to work at comparatively low wages. The 
influence exerted over them by the Hudson Bay Company is won- 
derful, and reflrcts great credit on the Company. Nowhere else 
have I ever found Indians so tractable and industrious, and so well 
disposed, and I have had some experience among the Indians of the 
Southern and Western States. They may pilfer a little, but if rum 
is kept from them, any other crime is almost unknown. They will 
serve the white man faithfully as guides or boatmen, for a small 
amount of money or cast-off clothing. A penny whistle or a brass 
button takes wonderfully. Three friends of mine were carried half a 
day in a canoe for the former article. 

" The tribes along the ' upper big canyon,' having had less inter- 
course with the whites, and not being so fully under the influence of 
the Hudson Bay Company, are inclined to be hostile. In one or 
more instances, they have stopped miners on the way up to the 
'forks' of Fraser and Thompson Rivers, and forced them to surrender 
their coats and even their boots, together with a portion of the 
provisions the poor fellows had lugged many a weary mile on their 
backs. I am told on credible authority, so bold and audacious has 
this tribe become that a few days ago a party of Frenchmen were 
stopped, when an Indian proposed to trade some salmon for jerked 
beef; which offer being declined, one of the Indians shot the 
Frenchman through the head. His party fled, leaving their comra le 
bleeding on the ground, where he was discovered some hours after- 
wards by another party of miners on the trail. Though not dead 
when found, he died within a few minutes afterwards. This unpro- 
voked murder caused a great deal of feeling, and there was a talk of 
organizing a company at Hope and Yale to chastise the perpetrators 
of ~it. The action of H. M. Snyder, as referred to, restored the former 
safe order of working." 




MINING REGULATIONS were soon afterwards enforced, under which 
persons occupying portions of the gold-fields, by erecting temporary 
buildings, tents, etc., and carrying on business in any way, were 
required to pay a fee of thirty shillings ($7.50) monthly, for the use 
of the land so occupied by them, and which they were required to 
pay in advance or on demand to the officer appointed to receive license 
fees. Persons desirous of establishing claims to new and unoccupied 
ground by working in the ordinary method for alluvial gold, might 
have their claims marked out on the following scale : 1. Twenty-five 
feet frontage, in rivers, to each person. 2. Twenty-five feet of the 
bed of a creek, or ravine, to each person. 3. Twenty feet square of 
table-land or river fiats to each person. Every such claim to be 
voided by the failure on the part of the claimant to work the same 
within ten days after the date of his acceptance, and persons found 
working on such, or any other ground without license ($5 monthly) 
previously paid for to the proper officer^ shall pay double the 
amount of such license, and in default, be proceeded against in the 
usual manner. 

farms in the neighborhood of Victoria. They were known as the 
Oraigflower or Mackenzie farm, the Skinner and the Longford 
farms, each under the charge of a bailiff or manager, who though 
not under the Hudson Bay Company, acted in harmony with them. 
Every branch of the Agricultural Company's business was conducted 
on the most thorough and liberal scale ; the buildings, massive and 
convenient, were built principally of stone. None but the best breed of 
cattle, horses or sheep were imported, and the machinery used was of 
the most improved kind. Crops generally were good, but better 
adapted for stock-raising than for grain. Vegetables did remarkably 
well. At the settlement of Craigflower, about two and a half miles 
from Victoria, there were from fourteen to twenty families, a well- 
cultivated central farm with saw mill, oatmeal mill, etc. The Company 


yet retain considerable land on Vancouver Island, which is held for 
sale under the agency of the Hudson Bay Company. 

THE AFRICAN RACE. In those early days there was only one place 
of public worship in Victoria, of which the Rev. Mr. Cridge was 
pastor, as well as chaplain to the Hudson Bay Company. From the 
public journal then published, it appears that certain parties from the 
United States felt aggrieved because a few negroes attended Mr. 
Cridge's church, and addressed a letter to him through the press on 
the subject, stating that the "Ethiopians perspired', that several 
white gentlemen left their seats vacant and sought the purer atmo- 
sphere outside; others moodily endured the aromatic luxury of their 
positions, in no very pious frame of mind ; that the negro has his 
proper place among created beings; to make him our equal he must 
submit to being skinned, renovated, ' born anew,' or any other process 
of change to make him white." 

A CORRESPONDENT replied, and amongst other things said : 

"Now, what is 'the head and front of the offence' 1 A large 
number of the colored people of the State of California, who, as a 
body of industrious, law-abiding citizens, had no superiors in the State, 
cheerfully paying their thousands into the State coffers for the 
sustenance of the Government ; were despoiled of their property and 
their persons maltreated; taxed for the support of common school*, 
and their children driven from the school-house door ; mad to pay 
poll tax, and then driven from the polls. To these wrongs they 
submitted, under earnest protests, for a series of years, . . . but 
feeling that forbearance had ceased to be a virtue, they left the land 
of their nativity around which clustered a thousand recollections of 
home, friends and kindred, for what at that time was comparatively 
a distant and desolate region, there to build themselves a home and 
establish a character, unmolested beneath the genial laws of the 
British Government. Victoria, at that time, had all the appearance 
of a quiet country village. 

"The colored people, unknown to themselves, were the pioneers of 
a large immigration. They came to escape the tyranny and oppression 
of Republican Democratic church-going California, believing that 
there in the Church of God, above all other places, all distinction and 
animosities should be buried. They were received by this Government 
with all that frankness and cordiality so peculiarly British ; welcomed 
and assured by those in power that they should have the same legal 
protection, and enjoy the same immunities, other things being equal, 
as could the most favored subjects ; and that the color of their skin 
should never debar them from' their rights. Right nobly have they 
maintained their former good character, and we shall be greatly 
disappointed in British character and honesty should they prove false 
to their trust." 


GOVERNOR DOUGLAS, accompanied by Crown Solicitor and Attorney 
George Pearkes, J. W. McKay, Donald Fraser, Charles B. Young, 
and other prominent citizens and government officials, left Victoria 
on the 30th of August for Fort Hope, Fraser River. The object of 
the visit, more especially, was to quell as much as possible the 
difficulties and discontent which were growing between the miners 
and the natives, and to make treaties of peace amongst them. It was 
.also apparent that additional peace officers should be appointed at the 
more important mining points. On the 3rd of September the gover- 
nor reached Fort Hope. A salute was fired in his honor, and every 
respect was paid to his Excellency by the miners and others. The 
Indians looked upon him as an old friend to be trusted, and as 
governor to be obeyed. 

A PROCLAMATION WAS ISSUED at Fort Hope setting forth that 
anyone convicted before a magistrate of selling or giving spirituous 
liquors to the natives of Fraser River or elsewhere, would be fined 
from five to twenty pounds. Permission was granted aliens to hold 
lands for three years without being interfered with, but after that 
time they must become naturalized British subjects or convey them 
to British subjects, otherwise the lands would be forfeited. A court 
of justice was held at Fort Hope by the Crown solicitor, and several 
offenders punished. A present was made to Spintlum, chief at the 
Forks, and instructions given him how he should conduct himself 
and his tribe towards the miners. Ten troopers, one warden of the 
river, and one sub-commissioner were to be stationed at the Forks ; 
at Fort Hope, one justice of the peace, two regular and ten special 
constables; for Fort Yale, one sub-commissioner, ten troopers, and 
ten special constables. A miner named Eaton, who had murdered a 
comrade named King, was committed to the court, convicted of 
manslaughter on the testimony of six witnesses from Hill Bar, and 
sentenced to transportation for life. 

The issue of the Victoria Gazette of the 16th of September notices 
that a new map of the town of Victoria had just been completed by 
the colonial surveyor, and was open for inspection by the public at 
the land office. On the map the names of streets are given, "having 
been chosen by that officer." They are classified : first, those in honor 
of the governors of the island, Blanshard and Douglas ; second, in 
compliment to distinguished navigators on this coast, Vancouver, 
Cook, etc. ; third, those named after the first ships that visited our 
waters, Discovery, Herald, Cormorant, etc.; fourth, those in honor 


of Arctic explorers, Franklin, Kane, Rae, etc.; fifth, those named 
after Canadian cities, lakes, rivers, etc. 

REFORMS ESTABLISHED. Governor Douglas returned from his 
Eraser River trip on the 26th of September, having accomplished 
much good by his presence amongst the miners, who gave him due 
praise for the many valuable reforms which his wisdom enacted. 
He made several speeches at principal points, giving the miners good 
advice, and assuring them of the sympathy and encouragement of the 
Government. Mr. McKay, a member of the Legislative Assembly, 
who had accompanied the governor to Fraser River, was instructed 
by him to return by way of Big Lillooet Lake to the coast, to 
ascertain the practicability of a route from the coast to the mines 
in that direction. 

A PARTY WAS FORMED which followed at first the road-cutting 
expedition of the Lillooet-Harrison route to the head of Big Lillooet 
Lake. After proceeding some distance along a river which entered 
the lake from the west, a trail leading towards the coast was taken, 
and in five days' march the head of Howe Sound was reached a 
distance of fifty-five miles. A portion of the route was along the 
Skowhomish River, which discharged at the head of Howe Sound. 
The valley, Mr. McKay reported, is well timbered, and, if cleared, 
would make good farming land. The rocks in the neighborhood are 
principally slate, granite and basalt. The mountains on the east 
side of the valley appear to be composed of soft red marl. Mr. 
McKay concluded that from Howe Sound to the valley of the 
Lillooet, the pass he had travelled over, was the shortest and best 
route to the upper Fraser. The expense, however, of opening up 
the new road, as well as other considerations connected with the 
established route, prevented the attempt being- made to travel by 
Howe Sound. 

FORT LANGLEY. Preparations were now being made at old Fort 
Langley to be in readiness for the arrival of the Royal Engineers 
and others expected from England in connection with the new seat 
of government on the mainland. A sale of town lots was advertised 
to take place at Victoria, on or about the 20th of October, the upset 
price to be $100 per single lot of 64 x 120 feet; lots to be sold 
without reservation, unless for the use of the Government. Barracks 
were built. The roof was laid by William Clarkson, from Oshawa > 
Ontario, yet (1893) a resident in New Westminster. [Mr. Clarkson 
died in 1894. ED.] 


WHISKEY, POWDER AND SHOT. The practice of supplying liquor 
to Indians on the Fraser River and at other places had been the 
cause of much trouble amongst the miners. At Yale, in August, a 
case is reported where some parties had been selling whiskey to the 
Indians, keeping them in a drunken and troublesome state. The 
agent of the Hudson Bay Company, Donald Walker, supported by 
the well-disposed citizens, proceeded to the premises where the liquor 
was kept for the purpose of putting a stop to the traffic by destroy- 
ing the stock on hand. Mr. Walker was attacked by an outsider, 
when a fight ensued, during which the officious party had a portion 
of his nose bitten off. The verdict of the people was, "served him 
right," as the fellow had no other interest in the matter than that he 
did not wish to see the whiskey destroyed in what appeared to him 
a wanton manner. The report goes on to say that " the business of 
supplying the savages with liquor by the whites has found a counter- 
part in their being furnished with arms and ammunition by the Chinese. 
A boat loaded with these pestiferous people arrived at a bar on the 
lower end of the Big Canyon, where a company of whites were at 
work, and proceeded to sell powder and shot to the Indians. They 
were at once driven away, when the Indians jumped into their 
canoes and brought them back, threatening the whites in case they 
further molested them." 

RESIGNED HIS FACTORSHIP. In compliance with Lord Lytton's 
request that Governor Douglas should sever all official connection 
with the Hudson Bay Company, and with the Puget Sound Agricul- 
tural Company, the governor informed his Lordship he had resigned 
his factorship and disposed of his stock, and would accept the offered 
governorship of the proposed new colony of British Columbia, which 
the recent gold discoveries had rendered necessary to be established 
without delay. 

On the 2nd of September, 1858, the Crown revoked the privileges 
of exclusive trade with the Indians which had been granted on the 
30th of May, 1838, for twenty-one years from that date, by passing 
an Act to provide for the government of British Columbia, which 
by that Act was created a colony. A proclamation was issued at 
Victoria, on the 3rd of November, by Governor Douglas, and a copy 
of the revocation published for the information and guidance of all 
persons interested therein. Thus ended the monopoly of the Hudson 
Bay Company on the mainland, west of the Rocky Mountains. 


revocation just referred to, was followed by another, dated from Fort 
Langley, 19th November, 1858. The commission appointing Governor 
Douglas also governor of the new colony, had arrived from London. 
Chief Justice Begbie had also arrived from England. To perform 
the ceremony of installing Governor Douglas into his new office, 
his Excellency was accompanied from Victoria by Rear-Admiral 
Baynes, Mr. Cameron, Chief Justice of Vancouver Island, Chief 
Justice Begbie, of the new colony, and several others, in H.M.S. 
Satellite, Captain Prevost. They anchored for the night at Point 
Roberts. Next morning the party was transferred to the Hudson 
Bay Company's steamer Otter, and thence to the Company's steamer 
Beaver, which was moored within the mouth of Eraser River. 

THE REPORT STATES that " both vessels then proceeded in company 
as far as old Eort Langley, when the Otter disembarked a party of 
eighteen sappers, under the command of Captain Parsons. They 
embarked on the revenue cutter Recovery, joining the command of 
Captain Grant, R.E., who had previously reached this spot with a 
party of the same corps. The two captains mentioned had recently 
arrived from England, each in command of small detachments of the 
Royal Engineers. The Beaver then proceeded with his Excellency 
and suite aboard to new Fort Langley, when preparations were made 
for the ceremonial of the following day." 

A GUARD OF HONOR, commanded by Captain Grant, was in readiness 
the next day (19th) to receive his Excellency and party as they 
disembarked. The morning was wet, and the road leading to the 
palisade rather slippery. As the party reached the top of the bank, a 
salute of eighteen guns was tired from the Beaver, and the British flag 
hoisted over the principal entrance to the fort. Owing to the 
unpropitious state of the weather, the meeting which was intended to 
have been held in the open air, was convened in a large room at the 
principal building. About one hundred persons were present. 

THE CEREMONIES. His Excellency commenced the ceremonies by 
addressing Mr. Begbie, and delivering to him her Majesty's commission 
as judge in the colony of British Columbia (ipso facto Chief Justice). 
Mr. Begbie then took the oath of allegiance and the usual oaths on 
taking office ; thereafter, addressing his Excellency, he took up her 
Majesty's commission appointing Governor Douglas to the office of 
Governor of British Columbia. Mr. Begbie, having read the 
commission in full, administered to Governor Douglas the usual oaths 


of office, viz., allegiance, abjuration, etc. His Excellency being thus 
-duly appointed and sworn in, proceeded to issue the proclamations of 
the same date (November 19th), viz.: One proclaiming the Act 
establishing the colony ; a second indemnifying all the officers of the 
Government from any irregularities which may have been committed 
in the interval before the proclamation of the Act; and a third 
proclaiming English law to be the law of the colony. The proclama- 
tion referring to the revocation of the exclusive privileges of the 
Hudson Bay Company, was also read. The proceedings then 
terminated. The governor did not leave the fort until next day, 
when a salute of seventeen guns was fired from the battlements. On 
leaving on the Beaver, his Excellency was loudly cheered. 

A SALE OF LANGLEY TOWN LOTS, as previously advertised, came off 
^it Victoria, on the 25th, 26th and 29th November. The land was 
laid out or divided into 183 blocks of five by ten chains, and the 
blocks subdivided into eighteen lots of 64 x 120 feet. Nineteen 
blocks were reserved for government uses in different portions of the 
town. The width of the streets was seventy-eight feet, with an alley- 
way of twelve feet in width through each block. The streets were 
not named. The new town was located upon the site of the old Fort 
Langley, thirty-three miles from the mouth of Fraser River. Upset 
price of lots, $100. Printed receipts for lots purchased were given, 
signed by J. D. Pemberton, acting Colonial Surveyor, and contained 
the following clause : " All interest in, and title to, the said lot, and 
to this instalment, to cease and become void, unless the balance is 
paid within the space of one calendar month from this date." The 
town as laid out and sold was named DERBY. 

THE BIDDING on the first day of the sale was very spirited, at 
prices ranging from $150 to $750, according to location. About two 
hundred lots were sold, yielding $41,000. On the second day, up to 
one o'clock the bidding was lively, but the best lots having been sold, 
the prices obtained were not so high as the previous day, ranging from 
$100 to $400 per lot. The two days' sale showed about four hundred 
lots disposed of, the proceeds amounting to about $68,000. Before 
commencing the sale, the following announcement was made in regard 
to the rights of foreigners to hold and transfer real estate : 

" 1st. According to the law of England, which is also the law of 
British Columbia, an alien may hold lands, but is liable to have them 
declared forfeited to the Crown at any time. 

" 2nd. No alien can be disturbed in the possession of lands by any 


other person than the Crown authorities, by reason only of his being 
an alien. 

" 3rd. The Colonial Government proposes to secure to aliens the full 
rights of possession and enjoyment of any lands which they may 
purchase at the sale for the space of three years. At the end of that 
time they must, if they wish to continue to hold the lands, either 
become themselves naturalized British subjects, or else convey their 
rights to British subjects. 

" 4th. It is the intention of the Colonial Government to obtain from 
the home Government their sanction to measures for carrying into 
effect the above views, which measures are now in course of prepara- 
tion. But they must depend for their full effect on the ratification by 
the home Government. By order of the Governor. Victoria, V. I., 
25th November, 1858." 



VICTORIA being a free port at this time, the following comparative 
view of imposts in California (1), Vanco-uver Island (2), and British 
Columbia (3), is taken from the Victoria Gazette, of November 20th, 
1858 : COASTING TRADE. (1) Closed against foreign flags. INLAND 
NAVIGATION. (1) Closed against foreign flags ; (3) almost unrestricted. 
IMPORT DUTIES. (1) From 15 to 30 per cent, ad valorem, on most 
.articles of foreign production. If exported, duty anew on every 
re-importation ; (2) none ; (3) ten per cent, ad valorem, indiscrimin- 
surveyor's fee at custom house, $6.10 ; emigrant agent, $.'5 ; clearance 
fee, $2.50 ; total, $11.60 ; (2) $10 in all on foreign vessels; $3 in all 
on British vessels; (3) sufferance fee for foreign vessels, $12, to 
navigate Eraser River. TONNAGE DUES. (1) One per cent, per ton ; 
harbor master's fee, 4 per cent, per ton ; total, 5 per cent, per ton ; 
{2) none; (3) none. PILOTAGE. (1) Compulsory, $10 per foot, 
inwards ; $8 per foot, outwards ; with 5 per cent, on pilotage 
additional to pilot commissioner ; (2) optional, $2 per foot, when 
employed; (3) optional, no established pilots. HEAD MONEY. (1) On 
entering the state, $5 ; on departing from the state, $6 ; (2) none ; 
{3) entry $2, departure nothing recently abolished. MINING 


LICENSE. (1) $4 per month on foreigners, citizens exempt ; (2) none ; 
(3) $5 per month indiscriminately upon all nations, including British 
subjects. GENERAL TAXATION. (1) San Francisco, about 3 per cent, 
on the value of all property, real and personal; tax on general business, 
merchants, bankers, etc., according to amount of business done ; bills 
of lading heavily taxed ; attorneys, brokers and auctioneers taxed ; 
poll tax on male adults, $3 ; (2) none ; (3) none hitherto imposed. 

THE CURRENT YEAR OF 1858 was most eventful in Vancouver 
Island, as well as on the mainland. In Victoria it brought wonderful 
changes, by increased trade, additional buildings, and extending and 
making new streets and roads. A building had been erected on 
Government Street, near where the post-office now stands. It was 
designed for the governor's office, and was styled the Government 
House, whence all his Excellency's documents were dated. Governor 
Douglas, in 1856-57, had a private residence built, on the south side 
of James Bay. He occupied that residence during his term of office 
as governor of both colonies, and afterwards until his death. A 
bridge was proposed to be built across the bay in line with Government 
Street, towards the expense of which the Legislature voted 800. 

To the mainland thousands of miners and traders and others had 
found their way, and many of them were highly fortunate in obtaining 
GOLD. Others were unfortunate and discouraged. The difficulty in 
transporting supplies beyond navigation on the Fraser compelled 
thousands to remain at the lower bars ; and it was not until 
the Harrison-Lillooet route was opened, so that the unnavigable 
canyons could be avoided, that sufficient supplies of food could 
be brought to the Upper Fraser. After that road was con- 
structed men passed in thousands over it, and supplies in com- 
parative abundance reached Thompson River. There were few 
miners on the Thompson, but they had penetrated thither by way 
of the Columbia River, and since April had been obtaining large 
returns, although working under great disadvantage, on the verge of 

By reason of the causes stated, a large number of old California 
experts were congregated at the lower bars, especially at Hill's Bar, 
amongst whom could be found many of the wild and abandoned 
characters who had made unsavory reputations for themselves in the 
" Golden State." Their treatment of the Indians on sundry occasions 
was not of the most gentle kind, yet by regulations framed by them- 
selves, a wonderful state of order was maintained at all the thirteen 


bars. There were a few, however, who committed acts calculated 
to inflame the worst passions of the natives. The natives were 
charged with having committed many murders. Bodies of white men 
were found on the river banks and in the water, mutilated beyond 
recognition. At length a large number of the miners were enrolled 
and an expedition formed to overawe the Indians. Treaties were 
made with the natives, as formerly referred to. 

Of the many thousands who reached Fraser River early in the year, 
all but about four thousand are said to have left before the middle of 
summer. The cause of the exodus was the seemingly inaccessible 
character of the approaches to the upper portions of the river, 
together with the fact that, owing to high water, the bars could not 
be worked until after midsummer. Another influx of miners took 
place in October. The majority of them, however, returned before 
winter set in. In the face of all the difficulties which had been 
experienced in the space of eight months the country had been 
populated, and a colony had been established. It is next to impossible 
for parties not then present to realize the hardships which those early 
prospectors had to endure. Many of them had added largely to their 
wealth, others returned poorer than when they came in. A remnant 
remained in the new towns and mining centres to try their fortunes 
next year. 

The newly surveyed town of Langley was expected to become the 
capital of British Columbia. Work had already been begun on 
barracks to receive the expected Royal Engineers on their arrival, as 
it was known they were en voyage, via Cape Horn, for Victoria. 
Tenders 'were advertised for by December 1st, Acting Colonial 
Surveyor Pemberton calling for tenders to erect at Langley a parsonage, 
church, court-house and jail, according to plans and specifications to 
be seen at the land office. A proclamation was issued December 
3rd, authorizing the levying of custom duties upon goods, as specified, 
imported into the colony of British Columbia. Prior to that date a 
specific duty of ten per cent, ad valorem was collected at Victoria on 
all goods sent into the mining districts. The Sisters of Charity 
published a notice of the opening of St. Ann's school, on the same 
date, at Victoria. 

COLONEL MOODY arrived at Victoria on November 25th, 1858. He 
travelled via Panama, in company with Captain Grant and his 
detachment of twenty-five Royal Engineers. On the 10th of Jan- 
uary 3 1859, a rumor reached Victoria that an outbreak had occurred 


at Yale, and that Colonel Moody who had already gone to Langley, 
had, on receiving intelligence of the difficulty referred to, proceeded' 
to the scene of action, taking along with him the twenty-five Royal 
Engineers, who had arrived with him in the 
colony. Governor Douglas deemed it pru- 
dent to strengthen Colonel Moody's hands. 
He was aware that a large number of desper- 
ate characters were wintering at Hill's Bar, 
and amongst them a certain character, Ed- 
ward McGowan, who, although noted for 
many attractive social qualities, had others 
which led him to become obnoxious to the 
laws of whatever country he favored with 


At the request, therefore, of Governor 

Douglas, Captain Prevost supplied a party of marines and blue jackets 
from the Satellite, under Lieutenant Gooch. They embarked on board 
the Plumper, which was the only available vessel at the time at 
Esquimalt. Captain Richards at once proceeded to Langley. On 
arriving there, they found that Colonel Moody had taken the Enter- 
prise, the only steamer then on the river capable of going farther up 
it than Langley, and pushed on to Yale, with twenty-five of the 
engineers under Captain Grant, R.E. It was considered advisable 
that the men should remain on board the Plumper, and that a mes- 
senger should at once follow and overtake Colonel Moody. 

"This service," says Commander Mayne in his excellent work, 
" Four Years in British Columbia and Vancouver Island," " devolved 
upon me (then Lieutenant Mayne of the Plumper), and I received 
orders to proceed up the river with despatches from Captain Richards, 
informing the colonel of the force at Langley. 

"Mr. Yale, the Hudson Bay Company's officer at Fort Langley, 
undertook to provide a canoe and crew for the journey, and my own 
preparations," continues Lieutenant Mayne, "were soon made a 
blanket, frock and trousers, a couple of rugs, two or three pipes, 
plenty of tobacco, tea, coffee, some meat and bread completing my 
outfit. At this time canoe-travelling was quite new to me, and, 
familiar as it has since become, I quite well remember the curious 
sensations with which this, my first journey of the kind, was com- 
menced. It was mid-winter; the snow lay several inches deep upon the 
ground. The latest reports from up the river spoke of much ice about 
and below Fort Hope, so that I was by no means sorry to avail myself 
of the offer of Mr. Lewis of the Hudson Bay Company, who had 


accompanied the Plumper as pilot to be my companion. Mr. Yale 
had selected a good canoe and nine stout paddlers four half-breeds, 
and five Indians, and when I landed from the ship, a few minutes 
before eleven, they were waiting on the beach, dressed in their best 
blankets, with large streamers of bright red, blue and yellow ribbons, 
in which they delight so much, Hying from their caps. Mr. Yale had 
previously harangued them, and presented them with the importance of 
the service in which they were engaged. Seating ourselves in the 
canoe, as comfortably as we could, away we started, the frail bark 
flying over the smooth water and the crew singing at the top of their 
wild, shrill voices ; their parti-colored decorations streaming in the 
bitter winter wind. 

"The party paddled along quickly until four o'clock, when they 
landed and made tea. This meal over, they started again and held on 
steadily all night. Wet, cold and tired the two passengers rolled 
themselves up in the rugs and fell into a broken sleep, lulled by the 
monotonous rap of the paddles upon the gunwale of the canoe, the 
rippling sound of the water against its sides, the song of the men now 
rising loud and shrill, now sinking into a low drowsy hum. Next 
morning, about four o'clock, we landed for a short spell of rest, and 
clearing away the snow, lit a fire and lay around it for a couple of 
hours. At the end of that time we picked ourselves up, stiff with 
cold, and breakfasted, and by half-past seven were under way again 
and paddling up the river ; the Indians, to all appearance, as lively 
and unwearied as if they had slept the whole night through. I 
cannot say the same for their passengers." . . . 

"The novelty of the situation, too, in my case had worn away, and 
I confess the second night of my journey was one cf unmitigated dis- 
comfort and weariness. Upon the second morning we rested a little 
longer by our watch-fire, Myhu-pu-pu, the head man of the party, 
assuring us that we had plenty of time to reach Hope before nightfall. 
But Myhu-pu-pu was wrong ; night fell while we were still some miles 
below the fort. About three in the afternoon we had boarded the 
Enterprise, and learnt that she had been three days in the ice ; had 
only got out of it indeed the previous morning, and that Colonel 
Moody had not, therefore, been able to reach Hope until that day. 

" We had reason to congratulate ourselves on our good fortune, as 
we had only met some floating ice, and been nowhere in very serious 
danger from it, although once or twice we had narrowly escaped being 
swamped by floating blocks. But as we proceeded, we found the 
river more and more swollen, the ice thicker and in greater quantities, 
and despite all the efforts of the crew, darkness set in while we were 
yet some miles short of our destination. On we pushed, however, 
and I had fallen asleep, when I was suddenly awakened by a sharp 
crack almost under my head. The canoe had struck a rock in crossing 
a rapid in the river, at a spot now known as Cornish Bar, but then 
called Murderer's Bar, from a murder which had taken place there, 
and she was stove in unmistakably. Thanks to the courage and skill 


of the leader of the crew, we were extricated from our perilous predic- 
ament. Leaping on to the rock, against which the full force of the 
current was driving the canoe, they lifted her off without a moment's 
hesitation, and the other rowers shooting her ashore, we all jumped 
out and ran her up upon the snow. Of course everything was wet, 
ourselves included ; but we were too grateful for our narrow escape to 
heed this trifling inconvenience. 

NARROW ESCAPES. "Meanwhile the men whose courage and 
readiness had saved us, were still upon the rock, the current sweeping 
by up to their knees and threatening to carry them away. The canoe 
being hastily repaired and veered down to them by a rope, they too 
were brought safely ashore. Then arose the question, 'how are we 
to be got to Fort Hope that night?' It was a serious one riot admit- 
ting of a very easy solution. To get the canoe atioat again was soon 
found impossible, as she was split fore and aft ; and it was ultimately 
determined to leave two of the Indians in charge of it while the rest 
of us tried to make the trail, which was known to pass near this spot to 
the fort. I have since that night walked that trail, when it was as 
pretty and pleasant a summer's evening stroll as anyone would wish 
to enjoy ; but on this occasion, with two or three feet of snow upon 
it, and three or four feet more ready to receive us on either side if a 
false step was made, that three-mile walk to Hope was very hard work 
while it lasted. It was worse for my companion (Mr. Lewis), for in 
crossing a river by a fallen tree, which served as a bridge, his foot 
gave way and he slipped in, drenching his frozen clothes and limbs 
afresh. Fortunately, however, it was not very deep, and he was fished 
out, and we reached the fort without further accident. 

HOSPITABLE TREVTMENT "At that time the old fort had only one 
room set apart for the officer in charge, which had to serve for both 
sitting and bedroom. Late at night as it was, into this and the 
presence of Colonel Moody, Captain Grant, Mr. Begbie, and the Hudson 
Bay Company's officers, gathered round the fire, we made our way, 
looking, I dare say, pitiable objects enough. With the ready kindness 
which I never failed to meet with from the Company's officers in 
British Columbia, Mr. Ogilvy soon equipped us in suits of dry clothes 
and seated us before a hot supper. 

the commissioner was rather surprised at the promptitude with which 
his requisition for troops had been met by the governor, and perhaps 
a little embarrassed. His impression now was, that the reports which 
had reached him at Yale, and hurried him hither, had been greatly 
exaggerated, and from the accounts which had since reached him, he 
had the best reason to believe that the feeling of the mining popula- 
tion at Yale and elsewhere had been grossly misrepresented. How- 
ever, he said that he had decided on proceeding next day to Yale with 
Mr. Begbie only, leaving Captain Grant and his party of engineers 
at Hope ; and he desired me to accompany him, so that if, upon his 
arrival at Yale, the presence of troops should be found necessary, I 


might return to Hope with orders to that effect ; and it was also 
determined that Mr. Lewis should take the canoe back to Langley as 
soon as it was repaired, and tell Captain Richards of my arrival and 

A CORDIAL RECEPTION. "Next morning, therefore, we started, 
and reached Yale at three. The town was perfectly quiet. The 
colonel was received upon his entrance with the most vociferous 
cheering and every sign of respect and loyalty. Upon the way up, 
we stopped at several of the bars, and made inquiries, which satisfied 
us that the miners were doing very well, although they complained 
that the snow had for some days past kept them from working. 
The river scenery between these two ports was beautiful, even at this 
season of the year. The distance is only fifteen miles, but the 
strength of the current is so great that in the winter five or six hours 
are consumed in the journey, and in summer when the stream is 
swollen by the melting snow double that time is often taken. The 
mountains on either side are from three to four thousand feet high, 
.and are composed almost entirely of plutonic rocks, and at their 
base is found the drift in which the gold is contained." 



'Colonel Moody performed church service in the court house the first 
-at Yale. It was attended by between thirty and forty miners, who- 
formed a most orderly and attentive congregation. After church service 
the difficulty which brought Colonel Moody to Yale, was investigated. 
Lieutenant Mayne explains the matter as follows : 

" At Hill's Bar, a mile below Yale, there was a resident magistrate, 
and at Yale two others had been appointed. . . . These three 
dignitaries were not upon the best terms with each other, and two of 
them claimed a certain case and prisoner as belonging each to his own 
district, and disputed the right of adjudicating upon them to such a 
degree that, one having possession of the culprit's body, and refusing 
to give it up to his colleague, the other went to the length of swear- 
ing in special constables to his aid, and removing the prisoner by force 
of arms to his jurisdiction at Hill's Bar. 

.juncture that Edward McGowan figured so conspicuously. He was 
-among the special constables, and was," says Mayne, "very possibly 


among the instigators of the squabble ; and it was this outraged 
magistrate's report that this worthy had been prison-breaking in his 
district, that gave it to the authorities at Langley and Victoria so serious 
an aspect. However, upon investigating the matter, he was found to 
have acted, if with indiscreet zeal, yet nob illegally, and no charge 
was preferred against him on that account. But the same afternoon, 
while Colonel Moody, representing the majesty of the law, was still at 
Yale, McGowan outraged it unmistakably by committing an unpro- 
voked assault. This, coupled with sundry other suspicious circum- 
stances, caused Colonel Moody to think that McGowan's friends and 
admirers would, if provoked (or not restricted), break into serious 
insubordination; and heat once instructed me to drop down the river 
to Hope and Langley, and order up the engineers, marines and blue 
jackets left at those places. ' 

PRECAUTION TAKEN. "The utmost precaution was taken about 
my journey. Mr. Allard, the Hudson Bay Company's officer at Yale, 
was instructed to have a small canoe launched unseen by the miners, 
who it was thought might endeavor to stop me, as they no doubt 
easily could have done. The darkness was waited for, and the canoe 
being launched 'and dropped about half a mile down the river, 
Mr. Allard came to the house for me, and led me to it along the 
river's bank. As we dropped down stream, I was afraid even to 
light my pipe lest we should be stopped at Hill's Bar. Absurd as all 
this now seems especially as I heard on my return that the miners 
knew perfectly well of my starting it was not without its use at the 
time. The promptitude with which Captain Grant appeared on the spot 
with the engineers at daylight next morning astonished the miners a 
good deal ; and it need not be assumed that, because they apologized 
and paid their fines, they would have done so equally had coercion 
not been threatened. 

START FOR LANGLEY. "Reaching Hope at half-past eight that 
night, I very much astonished Captain Grant by telling him he was 
to start for Yale at once, and, landing his men below Hill's Bar, on 
the opposite side of the river, to march thence into Yale. Having 
given these instructions, I embarked in the canoe again, reached the 
Enterprise, which was to convey me to Langley, and bring the men 
there up. Here a slight delay took place, as the steamer could not 
be got ready to start before day-break ; but away we went the instant 
dawn broke, and reached Langley in the afternoon of the following 
day ; when, the Enterprise having wooded, and everyone got on board, 
we were struggling up against the current by 6 p.m. ; reaching Smess 
River by nine or ten that night, and Cornish Bar by 8.30 the following 

"There the Enterprise's further progress was effectually barred ; 
and taking a canoe again, I made my way to Hope, where I found 
that further instructions had come from the colonel, to the effect that 
the blue jackets were to remain there, and only the marines to go on 
to Yale. So things were looking less martial ; and I was not surprised, 


on pushing forward to Yale next morning, to find that the short 
campaign was at an end ; and the peace which hardly had been 
disturbed, was restored. McGowan, after enjoying the sensation he 
had caused, paid Colonel Moody a formal visit, and, after making a 
very gentle, manlike apology for the hasty blow which had disturbed 
the peace of British Columbia, and entering into an elaborate, and, I 
believe, successful defence of his previous conduct in the squabble of 
the rival magistrates, committed himself frankly into the hands of 
justice. . . . 

PEACE RESTORED. "He was fined for the assault, exonerated 
from all previous misdemeanors, and next day, upon Hill's Bar being 
visited by Mr. Begbie (the Chief Justice) and myself, he conducted 
us over the diggings, washed some ' dirt ' to show us the process, and 
invited us to a collation in his hut, where we drank champagne with 
some twelve or fifteen of his California mining friends. And, what- 
ever opinion the Vigilance Committee of San Francisco might entertain 
of these gentlemen, I, speaking as I found them, can only say that, 
all things considered, I have rarely lunched with a better-spoken, 
pleasanter party. The word ' miner ' to many unacquainted with the 
gold fields, conveys an impression similar perhaps to that of ' navvy/ 
But among them may be often found men, who, by birth and education,, 
are well qualified to hold their own in the most civilized community 
in Europe." 

McGowAN OBLIGED TO FLEE. Soon after the conclusion of the 
Hill's Bar difficulty, McGowan's evil genius led him to shoot at a man 
on the same bar, whom, luckily he missed. He was, however, obliged 
to flee across the frontier into the United States territory, where he 
managed to ingratiate himself so plausibly as to be elected to the 
House of Representatives of one of the States that lie east of the 
Rocky Mountains. He was careful not to go by way of San Francisco, 
as the Vigilance Committee had not disbanded. But this polished 
fugitive from justice had the effrontery to publish, some years after- 
wards, his adventures to the world in the shape of an autobiography, 
in which he recounts, with a touch of bravado, his hair-breadth escapes 
from the clutches of the Vigilance Committee, and how its agents 
pursued him so persistently that only after the greatest difficulty he 
managed to reach a steamer starting for Victoria. He was recognized 
as he was going on board, and fired at, the bullet going through the 
lapel of his coat. At San Francisco, on December 9th, 1893, 
Edward McGowan died. 

SALUTE AT FORT HOPE. " A few days later," says Mayne, " we 
dropped down the river to Hope, when the blue jackets were paraded, 
and in honor of Colonel Moody, our one field-piece fired the first salute 


ver heard at Hope. The men were then got safely on board the 
Plumper again, which proceeded to examine the river and its north 
bank a few miles below Langley, and report whether it would do for 
the site of the capital of British Columbia it having been decided 
that Derby, or New Langley, the spot first selected, was not desirable. 
The site of New Westminster, or Queensborough, as it was first 
called, is, so far as its geographical position is concerned, very good 
indeed, as it is also in a strategical point of view ; but the bush there 
was very thick, while at Derby there was a large space of clear 

THE " MR. LEWIS " MENTIONED as having piloted the Plumper to 
Langley, and who accompanied Lieutenant (afterwards Admiral) 
Mayne in the canoe, is one of the oldest pioneers now (1894) living 
in Victoria. Captain Herbert George Lewis, was born at Aspenden, 
Hertfordshire, England, in 1828. He arrived at Victoria in 1847, 
on the Hudson Bay Company's bark Cowlitz. . Soon after his 
arrival he was engaged at Fort Rupert and subsequently transferred 
to Fort Simpson. Whilst there hh services were required on the 
bark Columbia, as mate, as the gold excitement in California had 
caused the desertion of several of the seamen of that vessel, as well 
as the mate. After the return voyage from London, Captain Lewis 
was placed in command of the pioneer steamer Beaver, which previously 
had been commanded, respectively, by Captains McNeill, Dodds, 
Sinclair and Swanson. He continued as captain of the Beaver until, 
in 1864, she was disposed of by the Company for surveying purposes. 
At various times afterwards, Captain Lewis had command of the 
Otter, Labouchere, Enterprise and Princess Louise. The transport of 
the whole Company's fur trade with Alaska w^s intrusted to his care, 
as master of the Otter and Labouchere, from 1864 till the acquisition 
of Alaska by the United States, in 1867. He completed his length- 
ened service with the Company in 1883, when he resigned. Shortly 
afterwards, he was appointed by the Dominion Government as agent 
of the Marine Department in British Columbia. In 1892, he was 
made shipping master for the port of Victoria, which office he now 
(1894) holds. 

remained at Langley with the Plumper for about a week, until the 
arrival of Colonel Moody and the force which had been sent up the 
river to quell the Hill's Bar disturbance. The steamer, on returning, 
was anchored nearly opposite the site of the present city of New 


Westminster. Lieutenant Mayne and Dr.- Campbell landed, to 
examine the ground and report to Colonel Moody as to whether it 
would answer for the site of the capital of British Columbia, as 
Derby, or New Langley, the place first selected, was not desirable. 
Mayne, in his book, says they commenced examining "a little north 
of where the town now stands, and so thick was the bush that it 
took us two hours to force our way in rather less than a mile and 
a half. Where we penetrated it was composed of very thick willow 
and elder, intertwined so closely that every step of the way had to be 
broken through, while the ground was cumbered with fallen timber 
of a larger growth. During the scramble," says Mayne, " I stumbled 
upon a large bear, which seemed to be as much surprised to see me as 
I was at sight of him, and I dare say equally discomposed. At any 
rate he showed no disposition to cultivate my acquaintance ; and, a& 
I was some way ahead of my companion and had only one barrel of 
my gun loaded with small shot, I was not sorry to find that our ways- 
seemed to lie in opposite directions." 

COLONEL MOODY SELECTED THE SITE of the town, a little below the 
thick bush mentioned where the ground was higher and somewhat 
clearer. It was concluded that both in a military and commercial 
light, the new site was infinitely preferable to that which had 
previously been fixed upon for the purpose, higher up and on the 
opposite side of the river. It had many advantages in which Derby 
was wanting, not the least being sufficient depth of water to allow 
the largest class of vessels capable of passing the sand-heads at the 
mouth of Fraser River, to moor along-side of its wharves. Captain 
Richards returned to Victoria, where Colonel Moody, in conference 
with Governor Douglas, changed the location of the capital of British 
Columbia from Derby. 

ROMANTIC SAPPERTON. When it was decided to change the location 
of the proposed capital of British Columbia from Langley, or Derby, 
to the site chosen by Colonel Moody, named by him Queensborough, 
notice was published, stating that a town was being surveyed there, 
to become the capital, and that parties who had purchased lots at 
Derby might surrender such lots and receive their equivalent in 
Queensborough town lots. An advertisement was published, 7th 
March, 1859, signed by Walter Moberly, Superintendent of Public 
Works, calling for tenders for the erection of certain government 
buildings, at Mary's Hill, Fraser River ; and that further particulars 
could be obtained by applying at Colonel Moody's House, Victoria, 


where plans, etc., could be seen. In the meantime the sappers and 
miners were at work preparing quarters for themselves and the 
others expected to arrive. The locality was known as "Sapperton," 
and was a beautifully romantic spot, near where the Provincial 
Penitentiary now stands. 



COMMANDER R. C. MAYNE having obtained access to the journals 
and letters of the pioneer missionary, Mr. Duncan, through the Sec- 
retary of the Society, in London, was thus enabled to furnish much 
valuable and interesting information relative to his operations. He 
says : 

" Before 1857 no Protestant missionary had ever traversed the 
wilds of British Columbia, nor had any attempt been made to instruct 
the Indians. At Victoria, the Hudson Bay Company had a chaplain 
stationed, but he was devoted entirely to the white settlers. I must 
except," continues Mayne, "the exertions of the Roman Catholic 

" If the opinion of the Hudson Bay people of the interior is to be 
relied upon, they effected no real change in the condition of the 
natives. The sole result of their residence among them was, that the 
Indians who had been brought under their influence had imbibed 
some notions of the Deity, almost as vague as their own traditions, 
and a superstitious respect for the priests themselves, which they 
showed by crossing themselves devoutly whenever they met one. 
Occasionally, too, might be seen in their lodges, pictures purporting to 
represent the roads to heaven and to hell, in which there was no 
single suggestion of the danger of vice and crime, but a great deal of 
the peril of Protestantism. 

" These colored prints were certainly curious in their way, and 
worth a passing notice. They were large, and gave a pictorial history 
of the human race, from the time when Adam and Eve wandered in 
the garden of Eden together, down to the Reformation. Here the 
one broad road was split in two, whose courses diverged more and 
more painfully. By one way the Roman Catholic portion of the 
world were seen trooping to bliss ; the other ended in a steep, 
bottomless precipice over which the Protestants might be seen falling. 


Upon the more sensible and advanced of the Indians, teaching such 
as this had little effect. I remember the chief of the Shuswap\ribe, 
at Kamloops, pointing out to me such an illustration hanging on his 
wall, and laughingly saying in a tone that showed quite plainly how 
little credence he attached to it, ' There are you and your people,' 
putting his finger, as he spoke, on the figures tumbling into the pit. 

"Of such kind was the only instruction that the Indians had 
received prior to 1857. Its influence was illustrated in that year in 
Victoria, where a Roman Catholic bishop and several priests had been 
resident for some time, and were known to have exerted themselves 
among the Songhie Indians who resided there. A cross had been 
raised in their village, and some of them had been baptized ; but when 
these had been called before the bishop for confirmation, they refused 
to come unless a greater present of blankets was made to them than 
had been given at their baptism. The bishop was said to have been 
very angry with the priests when this came to his knowledge ; he 
having, very possibly, been deceived by them as to the condition of 
the Indians. I am informed that he had a large heart painted upon 
canvas, through which he drew a blanket, and represented it to the 
Indians as symbolical of their condition. 

"Upon H.M.S. Satellite being commissioned in 1856, Captain 
Prevost offered to give a free passage to a 
missionary, if the Church Missionary Society 
would send one. This Society, which had 
been endowed by an anonymous benefactor 
with the sum of 500, to be devoted to such 
a purpose, offered the work to Mr. Duncan, 
who had been trained at the Highbury Col- 
lege, and who readily accepted it. The Satel- 
lite sailed in December, 1856, and reached 
Vancouver Island in June, 1857, when Mr. 
Duncan, whose name is now (1862) known 
and beloved by almost every Indian in the 
two colonies, at once prepared to commence 
his labors. 

" After some question with the colonial authorities as to where he 
should begin his work, considerable desire being expressed on the 
Hudson Bay Company's part to place him at Nanaimo, it was 
determined that he should go to Fort Simpson, on our northern 
boundary. This spot had been previously fixed upon by the Society 
at home for the scene of Mr. Duncan's labors. The Indians there 
were known to be more free from the contagion of the white man, 
and were assembled in larger numbers than at any other place on the 
coast. Another advantage possessed by this locality was that at 
Simpson the trade of the fort brought a great number of different 
tribes together. Indeed the tribe of Tsimpseans, among whom Mr. 
Duncan's labors have been productive of most good, had been 
attracted from another spot on this account, and had since settled 
there altogether. 



" From June till October, 1857, Mr. Duncan found it necessary to 
remain at Victoria, being unable to get a passage to Fort Simpson, a 
distance of eight hundred miles, until the Hudson Bay Company's 
steamer should proceed thither. This interval, however, he employed 
most profitably in learning the language of the Indians among whom he 
was intending to reside (the Tsimpseans), and otherwise in preparing 
for the work before him. 

" Upon his arrival at Simpson, Mr. Duncan was, in pursuance of 
orders to that effect given by the governor, quartered in the fort of 
the Hudson Bay Company, and one of the smaller houses was allotted 
to him, which was large enough for a school, as well as for his dwelling. 
In the fort he found eighteen men assembled one Scotch, one 
English, three Sandwich Islanders, and thirteen French-Canadians, 
each having an Indian woman living with him. There were also 
seven children, and he was told there were some half-breed children 
scattered about the camp, who, if he pleased, might be received into 
the fort for instruction. 

"On Sunday, the llth October, he first performed divine service 
in this scene of his new and arduous labors, and on the 13th he 
opened school with but five half-breed boys, belonging to the fort, as 
pupils, the eldest not five years old. Speaking of this, he writes : 'I 
am very glad for their sakes that they are so young. These I intend 
to teach in English. Their parents seem exceedingly delighted. I 
did think of taking a few half-breed children out of the camp, but I 
find they have been so long abandoned by their fathers that they 
have forgotten every word of English, and become so much like the 
Indians that I shall be obliged to deal with them as such.' 

"Again Mr. Duncan writes : 'To-day a chief came, who is suffering 
from a bad cough, and seems wasting away. He very anxiously 
desired relief ; but it is of no use giving them any medicine for such 
complaints, as their habits prevent any good effects ensuing. I 
perceived by his countenance he wanted to tell me something serious. 
Like a man about to take a long journey, he seemed gasping for 
directions about the way. Oh ! howl longed to tell him my message, 
but I could not. I made him understand that I should soon be able 
to teach them about God, that I had His book with me which I should 
teach from, and my object was to make them happy. His constant 
response was, 'Ahm, Ahm ' (good, good). Upon another occasion 
the same man asked to see * Shimanyet Lak-kah, Shahounak ' (God's 

ATTEMPT TO MURDER DUNCAN. In December, a chief named 
Legaic accompanied by a party of medicine-men, enraged because the 
people were losing interest in sorcery through Mr. Duncan's teachings, 
attempted to murder him. This same chief afterwards became a 
zealous Christian. In April, 1860, Mr. Duncan visited the Indian 
villages on the Naas River, where he received a warm welcome. 


In May of that year he visited the site of a deserted village, which 
afterwards was chosen as the site of the Christian village of Met-lah- 
kat-lah, about twenty miles down the coast from Fort Simpson. 

UNWELCOME VISITORS. Mr. Duncan returned to Victoria for a 
short time in 1860, to consult with Governor Douglas and Bishop Hills 
on the best course to pursue for the management and improvement 
of the Songhie Indians near Victoria, and the thousands of natives 
from the north, who, attracted by the influx of miners, came to 
visit them. They together lived the most debased lives imaginable. 
It was but too clear to Mr. Duncan that his work, far away among 
the Tsimpseans, at Fort Simpson, was likely to be counteracted by the 
bad lessons which his former pupils would learn during their visits to 
the south. 

ONEROUS DUTIES. The Indians referred to included the fiercest of 
the coast tribes, yet they placed implicit con6dence in Mr. Duncan's 
good faith and motives. Speaking of them, he says: "My duties 
have kept me from noon till night among the Indians. They so 
appreciate my exertions for their temporal welfare that many have 
come to receive religious instruction who would otherwise have stayed 
away. The Indians are continually coming to me with their troubles, 
and seem grateful for my assistance. I also succeeded in getting 
several into good places as servants." 

INDIAN SCHOOLS. When Governor Douglas returned from British 
Columbia, in June, he at once acceded to the plans submitted to him 
for the benefit of the Indian population, and took the necessary steps 
to carry them into action. At a public meeting <60 was collected 
for the erection of a school-house. The governor himself made the 
sum up to 100, and the building was immediately commenced. 

ASSISTANCE FOR DUNCAN. The Church Missionary Society had 
sent out Mr. Tugwell, who arrived on the 8th of August, to join 
Mr. Duncan ; and it was determined that they should both go at once 
to Fort Simpson, in order that Mr. Duncan might introduce his 
companion to his duties there, and then return to Victoria for the 
winter to superintend the new schools. They, accompanied by Mrs. 
Tugwell, left Victoria on the 13th, and reached Fort Simpson on the 
21st August. Soon after their arrival, they were informed that the 
Rev. A. Garrett, and Mr. Mallandaine, catechist, had volunteered to 
take charge of the Indian schools at Victoria, and that Mr. Duncan 
need not return there. 

It was known to Mr. Duncan and Mr. Tugwell before leaving 


Victoria, that accommodation for himself and his companions could 
not be afforded by the Hudson Bay Company, and that it would be 
necessary that they should build a place outside the fort for school 
and dwellings. The question for them to decide was, where to 
build? Many of the Indians were desirous of returning to their old 
villages, about fifteen miles from Fort Simpson Met-lah-kat-lah. 
Mr. Duncan, in writing on the subject, says : 

"The choice of a site for our mission premises rests, I think, 
between the neighborhood of Fort Simpson and Met-lah-kat-lah. I 
will compare the two places, and I think you will agree with me, that 
the latter place is decidedly to be preferred. 

"The only advantage of Fort Simpson is a negative one that is, 
by remaining here we shall avoid the trouble of a move. But the 
disadvantages are great. The influence of the fort, and the immoral- 
ities allowed on board the Company's ships which come here, greatly 
oppose the influence of the mission. More than all, the physical 
character of the country in the neighborhood of the fort is exceedingly 
bad, and, to my mind, condemns the place at once. One effect the 
mission must have upon the Indians will be to make them desire 
social improvement. How necessary, therefore, it is, that the mission 
be established where social improvement is possible. 

" But at Fort Simpson it is not possible. First, as to beach-room. 
This is essential to the comfort and welfare of these coast Indians, 
who have so many canoes to take care of. But the whole of the 
beach at Fort Simpson is now more than conveniently occupied ; and 
then as to land about this place, it is all in such a state that it could 
not be made available for gardens without immense labor, and appli- 
ances for which the Indians do not possess. Met-lah-kat-lah, however, 
not only possesses these two essentials to improving the Indians 
socially, viz., plenty of beach-room and plots of land for gardens, but 
its channel is always smooth and abounds with salmon and shell-fish, 
while its beauty stands in great contrast to the dreary country around 
Fort Simpson. 

" It may be asked," continues Mr. Duncan, " why did not the Com- 
pany establish their fort there ? This is easily explained. Twenty-five 
years ago, when Fort Simpson was built, the Company had sailing 
ships employed up the coast, and the passage to the old Tsimpsean 
village being rather narrow, they preferred this as the entrance to 
the harbor is wider ; but to steamers, the way to Met-lah-kat-lah 
presents no difficulty. The Indians were induced to leave their 
ancient home for the sake of trading with the fort ; there is now no 
necessity for remaining near it for that purpose ; other facilities for 
trading are opening up ; a schooner, not the Company's, is, at this 
moment, in the harbor, doing a famous trade with the Indians ; 
indeed, I may say that the importance of Fort Simpson as a central 
trading-port is gone ; very few Indians from any other places come 


here now, as they used to do, and fewer will continue to do so; 
everything seems propitious and prepared for a move to be made for 
the social welfare of those poor tribes, and surely it is worthy of this 
mission to be the leader in such a praiseworthy undertaking." 

MR. TUGWELL'S HEALTH FAILED. After remaining a year at Fort 
Simpson, Mr. Tugwell's health became so seriously affected that he 
was obliged to resign his labors and retire to Victoria. Mr. Duncan 
was, therefore, again left to labor single-handed. The plan which they 
.had proposed carrying out, had they been permitted, was that Mr. 
Duncan should remain at Simpson, while Mr. Tugwell should go to 
Met-lah-kat-lah, build a house there, and draw the Indians round him 
as they left Simpson. This purpose, however, Mr. Tugwell's illness 
frustrated. Mr. Duncan's own health began to suffer. Strong as he 
was, his labors had told severely upon his constitution. He required 
to make a trip to Victoria for change of air and rest. The sort of 
man required to assist, he said, must be of " a peculiar stamp simple 
.and hearty, hardy and daring able and willing to endure rough work." 



NEW YEAR RECEPTIONS. With the commencement of the new 
year, Mr. Duncan began his labors among the Indians outside the 
fort. " It would be impossible," he says, " to give a full description 
of this, my first general visit to the Indians in their houses, for the 
scenes were too exciting and too crowded to admit of it. I confess 
that cluster after cluster of these half-naked savages round their fires 
was, to my unaccustomed eyes, very alarming ; but the reception I 
met with was truly wonderful and encouraging. On entering a house 
I was greeted by one, two or three of the principal personages, with 
' Clah-how-yah,' which is the complimentary term used in the trading 
jargon. After a little time several would begin nodding and smiling, 
at the same time in a low tone reiterating, ' Ahm, ahm-ah-ket ahm 
shimanyet (Good, good person, good chief). In some houses they 
-would not be content till I took the chief place near the fire, and 


always placed a box upon a box for me to sit upon. I found forty- 
seven sick, and three in a state of lunacy." 

NEW SCHOOL-HOUSE. In the autumn of 1858 Mr. Duncan com- 
menced building his school-house outside the fort, a work in which 
the Indians greatly assisted, providing plank and bark for the roof, 
to the value of about five pounds. Many took the boards off their 
own houses to give him, and some even the pieces that formed part 
of their bed. It is noticed in his journal, "that by the 15th of 
November the plastering would be dry enough for whitewashing." 

in teaching during the winter of 1858-9. His heart was gladdened 
by the chiefs coming to say that they had made up their minds to 
abandon sorceries and medicine-work. The school-house was finished 
only on the 17th November, and on the 19th, in the morning, fifteen 
children were present. Before noon about seventy had arrived. In 
the afternoon there were fifty adults and fifty children present. " It 
was," saysMr. Duncan, "very difficult to proceed with such a company, 
and I should have found it more so, but for the children whom I 
already had under training. November 23rd Both yesterday and 
to-day we mustered about one hundred children, and from forty to 
fifty adults at school. November 25th This morning about 140 
children and fifty adults. I am glad to see, already, an improvement 
in their appearance, so far as cleanliness is concerned. I inspect them 
daily. Some few have ventured to come with their faces painted, but 
fewer daily. A good many, too, have cast away their nose-rings." 

NEW MISSIONS ESTABLISHED. Other missions were established 
upon the same plan as Met-lah-kat-lah. One at Kincolith, on Naas 
River, in 1864, was in charge of Rev. A. Doolan. It included the five 
tribes of Tsimpseans, on that river. Mr. Doolan was succeeded by 
Robert Tomlinson, M.D., who remained until 1879, when he left to 
establish a new mission. He was replaced by the village teacher, Mr. 
Henry Schutt. The mission numbered about 150 people. About forty 
miles above Kincolith, a new mission was established at Kittackdamin, 
also on Naas River, and placed in charge of Arthur, a Nishkah 
Indian catechist ; a school-house was erected and a good school started. 
Another native teacher was placed at Kitwingach, on the Skeena 
River, one hundred miles from Kittackdamin. 

COURTS OF JUSTICE ORGANIZED. Early in March, Chief Justice 
Begbie had organized a court at Langley and empanelled a grand 
jury. Several cases were tried, and the terrors of the law spread 


amongst evil-doers. On the 2nd of March, Lieu tenant-Governor 
Moody and suite left Victoria forLangley ; and, by the middle of the 
month, he had proceeded to Queensborough, where he superintended 
the Royal Engineers, etc., who were at work surveying and clearing 
the site of the proposed capital. Colonel Moody and suite returned 
to Victoria on the 31st of March. A court of assize had been opened 
at Yale on the 23rd of March, and the announcement made that the 
next session of court would be held at Lytton on the Upper Fraser. 
It is recorded that the northern Indians at Victoria were so numerous 
at Victoria in March, that on the 16th of that month H.M.S. 
Tribune was commissioned to tow the Indians and their canoes out 
as far as Johnson's Pass, in charge of Sheriff Heaton, whence they 
must shift for themselves. 

QUKENSBOROUGH. A correspondent writing on the 5th of April, 
1859, says : "The site of Queensborough is seventeen miles above the 
sand-heads, or mouth of the Fraser, on the west bank of which it rises 
with a gradual ascent, until its altitude becomes about one hundred 
feet, where it is level. The undergrowth and fallen trees, in various 
stages of decomposition, render a walk over the entire locality some- 
what laborious ; yet curiosity and a desire to see for myself led me 
far up and around, beneath the lofty spreading arms of the fir, cedar, 
hemlock and spruce, and less regularly beautiful, though scarcely less 
useful, ash, elm, birch, apple, cherry, maple and elder, with which the 
site abounds. Some of the timber is very large, one cedar measuring 
27 ft. 8 in. five feet from the ground ; another, 18 ft. 6 in.; another, 
25 ft. ; and one spruce, 22 ft. 2 in. One fallen fir tree, cut from the 
site of the custom house, measured 220 feet in length free from the 
stump, which measured 4 ft. 6 in. in diameter. 

SURVEYED BY THE ROYAL ENGINEERS. " The commercial part of 
the prospective capital will present a wharfage front of a little more 
than a mile in lengh, and as a road sixty-six feet in width is now 
being surveyed by the Royal Engineers, next and along the shore, the 
construction of as much wharfage as will be necessary for the accom- 
modation of unloading ships will be sufficient to furnish a draught of 
at least twenty-five feet at high water, on an average. The tide rises 
six feet along the bank, by actual measurement, offering rather a con- 
venience than detriment in any point of view. The river at this point 
is half a mile wide; six hundred yards of which distance offers good 
anchorage in from twenty-five to fifty feet of water, which will afford 
.ample room for the merchant marine of Queensborough. 


IMPROVEMENTS ARE MADE SLOWLY. "The town is but as yet little 
improved two grocery stores, and a few houses and tents occupied 
by those employed on the public buildings and works, being the only 
structures at present erected. The custom house and treasurer's 
office are in progress, and will, it is thought, be completed within 
two weeks. A pier will be commenced this week in front of the 
custom house site, to extend twenty feet beyond low water mark, 
affording wharfage for vessels drawing from fifteen to twenty feet of 
water at low tide. A temporary custom house station has been 
erected at a point higher up the river, opposite and facing that 
portion of the town selected for the site of the barracks and officers' 
quarters. This reserve (afterwards named ' Sapperton ') is separated 
from the commercial town by a small running brook, at present 
crossed by the trunk of a fallen tree. At the barracks a storehouse 
is in process of erection, one or two temporary buildings having been 
already built for the accommodation of Lieut. -Governor Moody and 
suite. The Topographical Engineers' mess was on board the Recovery* 
formerly used as a revenue vessel in the river, but which is now 
anchored a few feet off shore in front of his Excellency's quarters, 
Mr. Richard King's name is mentioned as being the contractor for 
building the custom house. 

THE FIRST PUBLIC SERVICE. " On Sabbath last the first religious 
services were performed in this place, the Rev. E. White, Wesleyan 
missionary, officiating. The congregation assembled in one of the 
shady spots surveyed for a public square, and consisted of one lady and 
two children, and some fifty males. It was a beautiful spot, and the 
occasion one of peculiar solemnity. Flowers were blossoming within a 
few feet of us, and beautiful birds were twittering amid the rustling 
branches of the stately conifera. The dense forest around and beyond 
seemed to echo back the warning tones of the speaker's voice, and as 
the congregation united their voices in songs of praise, the very trees 
seemed to blend their cadence in the melody." 

EXPRESS COMPANIES. Mayne says of expresses : " All over Cali- 
fornia and British Columbia, letters or parcels are carried with perfect 
safety, and, all things considered, very cheaply, by means of them. 
The organization of some of these companies is most elaborate. The 
principal one is Wells- Fargo's, which has agencies all over the world. 
Their office in Victoria is one of the finest buildings there. I have 
never known a letter sent by them miscarry. The charge for sending 
anywhere in California is ten cents (5d.), and so great is my faith in 


them that I would trust anything, even in that insecure country, in 
an envelope bearing the stamp of Wells, Fargo & Co.'s Express. 
There are several minor expresses in the different parts of the coun- 
try Ballou's Fraser River 1 Express, Jeffray's Express, Freeman's 
Express, all of which appear to nourish ; and so great is the trust 
reposed in them, and the speed with which they travel, that the miners, 
as yet, prefer sending their 'dust' by them to the Government 

POSTAL RATES AND INCIDENTS. Under date May 4th, Alex. C. 
Anderson, signed Postmaster-General, Victoria, V.I., announces that 
the conveyance of letters by private expresses has been sanctioned, 
provided that every letter conveyed by such expresses within the 
colonies of Vancouver and British Columbia, or between the said 
colonies, or from those colonies to other parts, be prepaid for colonial 
postage either by stamped envelopes or cash, namely 2|d. or five 
cents. A sale of town lots at Queensborough, to take place at Vic- 
toria on June 1st, is advertised by order of the Lieutenant-Governor 
and Chief Commissioner of Lands and Works, signed Robert Burnaby, 
Secretary ; also town lots at Fort Hope, Fort Yale, and Fort Doug- 
las, above the same signature. The first church erected in the colony 
of British Columbia was at Langley, where the Rev. W. Burton 
Crickmer, Rector, preached the first sermon, May 13th, 1859. He 
arrived from England along with Colonel Moody and suite, who 
reached Victoria, 25th December, 1858. 

COLONEL MOODY'S RESIDENCE. The work of clearing the site and 
improvements at Queensborough were so far advanced that a perma- 
nent residence was ready for occupation by Colonel Moody and family 
on 18th of May, when he and suite left Victoria in the steamer 
Beaver. " A large concourse of the personal friends of Colonel 
Moody and his estimable lady," according to the Victoria Gazette, 
"were assembled on the wharf to pay their parting respects and bid 
them adieu, and the guns from the old bastion of the Company's 
fort thundered forth the customary salute, as the Beaver steamed 
out of the harbor." The same issue of the Gazette (May 19th, 1859), 
referring to Victoria states : " The grading of Government Street from 
Fort Street is progressing fairly towards completion. The pile driver 
is busy in setting the foundation timbers for the new bridge which 
when completed will extend this fine thoroughfare across James Bay. 
On the opposite bank may be seen the first of the new public edifices. 
This one, now nearly finished, is intended for the land office, and the 


ground in its immediate vicinity is being broken preparatory to the 
erection of the rest of the projected government buildings." 

BRIDGE AND PUBLIC OFFICES. The item relating to the bridge 
(which was opened for traffic 5th of July) and the public buildings 
is interesting, inasmuch as it shows the progress of the works and 
fixes the date of their construction. Governor Douglas, it appears, 
had his own difficulties to contend against. In the House of Assembly 
there was a vigorous opposition party, and outside " the House," the 
British Colonist newspaper, first published in 1859, opposed the gen- 
eral policy of the governor. The editor took exception to the build- 
ing of the bridge across James Bay, and to the plans and construction 
of the new public buildings then in course of erection. In reference 


to the latter he says : " They have not the merit of being either cheap 
or convenient. At a very large expense to the colony, they are built 
and scattered over a square like a number of goose-pens. The expe- 
rience of the North American colonies, and our utilitarian cousins, 
points directly to the erection of one building in which all the offices of 
the capital of the colony can be located. But for some reason or other, 
blundering of the most wretched character appears to be an essential 
characteristic of the present administration, whether it relates to 
legislation or public works." 

THE NEW PARLIAMENT BUILDINGS. Be this as it may, the build- 
ings of 1859 have done good service, before and since the union of the 
colonies. Latterly, however, they have become too small for the proper 
accommodation of the departments and the larger number of offices 
required to transact the increased business of the Province. They are 


now being replaced by a magnificent, substantial and elegant pile of 
buildings as suggested in 1859, to defray the expense of which the 
Legislature of 1893 voted the sum of $600,000. The new buildings 
will occupy the site chosen for the former buildings by Governor 
Douglas. No better site could then or now have been found within 
the city limits. It is of ample size and occupies the block bounded 
by Bird Cage Walk Street, Belleville Street, and Menzies Street, to a 
line running east behind the new drill shed to intersect Bird Cage 
Walk Street, which contains about ten acres. The Provincial Gov- 
ernment transferred to the Dominion Government one acre of the 
south-west corner of the area described, on which a drill shed was 
erected in 1892-3, at a cost of between forty and fifty thousand 
dollars. The Provincial Government in 1892, to make the site of the 
public buildings more commodious and symmetrical, expropriated a 
strip of land, which with the cottages thereon required the sura of 
$59,000 to purchase it from the proprietors. 

bly, a bill was passed April 7th, making United States currency a 
legal tender in the colony of Vancouver Island. On the 12th of 
April, the ship Thames City, from London, arrived at Victoria, with 
the main body of the Royal Engineers, government stores and mer- 
chandise. As many as three thousand people had arrived in the 
"canoe country" before the 1st of May; and on the 12th of May, 
$115,000 of gold dust was reported. The Royal Hospital is reported 
about completed in Victoria. It is also recorded that Governor 
Douglas had not only generously aided in the erection of the new 
hospital buildings, but had borne a large proportion of the expense 
attendant upon the conducting of the temporary hospital, under the 
charge of the Rev. Mr. Cridge. 

GOVERNOR DOUGLAS, in a message to the House of Assembly, dated 
7th May, 1859, says: 

" In respect to the public offices now required, I have made a 
demand on the agent and representative of tlie Hudson Bay Company, 
the proprietors of Vancouver Island, to provide the necessary funds ; 
and he has agreed to defray all expense of erecting such buildings. 

" I have also to remind the House of Assembly that the building 
now occupied as a government office, as well as that used for a land 
office, are the property of the Hudson Bay Company, and that these 
buildings have not been removed, as the resolution of the House may 
be understood to imply, but merely surrendered to the agent of that 


Company, on his undertaking to provide for the erection of other 
buildings for the public offices of the colony. 

" The offices immediately required are : A treasury with fire-proof 
vault ; a barrack for the military guard ; a land office ; an office for 
the registrar of deeds and conveyances ; an office for the colonial 
secretary; a house for the legislative assembly; a supreme court ; an 
official residence for the governor, and other buildings of inferior 

"A moment's consideration will satisfy the House that no site 
sufficiently spacious for the location of so many buildings is obtainable 
in the centre of the town without involving a very large outlay of 
money, in buying out the rights of the present holders of the land, 
which is now selling on Yates Street at the rate of .21 sterling a front 
foot, and that it would be neither proper nor judicious to pack the 
public offices of the colony into a confined space without regard to the 
arrangement and the proper distribution of air and light. 

"The site which I have selected for the location of these buildings 
is recommended by many advantages, being dry, airy and spacious, 
containing ten acres of land, and having a cheerful aspect and an 
extensive view ; and being a public reserve, it is acquired without 
expense. I propose to concentrate the public offices on that spot 
after a plan laid out on the most approved principles for health, 
convenience and ornament. 

** The only objection made to the site when the question was debated 
in council was its distance by the circuitous route by James Bay, 
from the centre of the town ; and as that would, no doubt, have been 
felt as a serious inconvenience, in order to remove it I agreed to the 
construction of a bridge as an extension of Government Street. 

"The erection of the bridge has been contracted for at an expense 
of three thousand five hundred dollars, or about eight hundred pounds, 
which does not exceed the value of half a building lot in the centre of 
the town. 

"I have further to observe, that no part of the expense of these 
buildings has been provided for by the House of Assembly, or out of 
any moneys which have been raised by their means, the whole cost 
being, in the first place, provided for by the Hudson Bay Company, 
and having ultimately to be borne by the Crown ; therefore the whole 
establishment will remain the property of the Crown until otherwise 
disposed of. 

"I would further remark for the information of the House, that the 
Crown may lawfully construct bridges in any situation where they 
do not interfere with private rights and are conducive to public 
convenience, and I presume the House is not disposed to question that 

Another message from Governor Douglas to the House of Assembly 
will illustrate how his Excellency dealt with the people's representa- 
tives in those days : 



" To the Speaker and Gentlemen of the House of Assembly : 

" I have received a communication from your Speaker on the 4th 
of this present month, conveying copy of resolution which had passed 
the House on that day, to the following effect : 

" 'That as his Excellency has determined on removing some of the 
government offices from a central position of the town to the south 
end of it, as well as having a bridge constructed eight hundred feet 
in length, leading thereto, the erection of which and removal of 
government offices has not been brought before the people for their 
consent, therefore this House protests against the action adopted by 
his Excellency, and declares the same to be unconstitutional and a 
breach of privilege. MR. YATES.' 

" I have to inform the House in reply to the subject of that 
resolution, that it has been determined to erect certain buildings to 
serve as public buildings for the colony, on the south side of Victoria 
harbor, and to connect them by means of a bridge over James Bay, 
with Government Street, so as to render them convenient of access to 
the public. 

" I have resorted to this measure simply because such offices have 
not been provided by the colony, and because they are pressingly 
wanted for the public service ; and the south side of Victoria harbor 
has been selected as the site whereupon they are to be erected, on 
account of its bein? airy, spacious and convenient, and acquired 
without expense ; while by isolation from the town, it is in a great 
measure secured against the danger of conflagration, and because it is 
impossible to procure a site of extent sufficient for the purpose in the 
centre of the town, without incurring an enormous outlay of money. 

" I did not think it necessary to consult the House concerning the 
erection of those buildings, for the reason that the House was not 
called upon to defray their cost, and because the House has on all 
occasions declined to take any responsibility in such purely executive 
matters, or (with one exception) to provide funds for any colonial 
improvements whatever. 

" Thus, the support and maintenance of places of public worship, 
of the colonial schools, the salaries of the clergymen and teachers, the 
construction of roads, the erection of the police courts, of the custom 
house and other public edifices, the establishment of a police force, 
the administration of justice, and all other measures providing for the 
public safety and convenience have been thrown entirely on my 
hands, without any pecuniary aid or assistance whatever from the 
House of Assembly. 

"I will remind the House of Assembly of the reply to a message 
from me, dated 9th day of August last, representing the insufficiency 
of the public jail, and requesting their aid in providing better prison 
accommodation, and for the erection of an hospital for the relief of the 


indigent sick. The House on that, as on other occasions, did not 
grant the desired aid, and threw the entire onus of erecting such 
buildings on the Executive. 

"Disclaiming any intention, and assuming no right, to question the 
opinion of the House as to the nature and extent of its own privileges, 
I have entered into the explanations herein given to prove that the 
course I have, in this case, pursued was dictated by necessity 
implies no discourtesy to the House was founded on precedent 
violates no constitutional law and is admitted on all sides to be of 
great public advantage." 



GOLD PLENTIFUL. In 1859 the gold excitement was not so intense 
as during the former year. The state of the roads, the difficulty of 
reaching mining locations, the high price of provisions, and the late- 
ness of the season before the water in the Eraser River was low 
enough to allow the "bars "to be worked, were the chief causes of 
delay in the arrival of miners. Gold was found in abundance when 
properly and persistently looked for. Governor Douglas was full of 
activity in Victoria. He organized an expedition to examine reported 
gold in Queen Charlotte Islands. Major Downie, an experienced 
prospector and gold miner in California, was commissioned by him 
to visit and report on the northern portion of the mainland, going 
by Port Simpson and the Skeena River. This Major Downie 
accomplished and reported on in March and October of that year. 
Lieutenant-Governor Moody also fitted out several parties of Royal 
Engineers to survey and repair roads. 

THE PROSPECTOR'S PAN. The following remarks on the various 
methods of working mining claims and mines may be found of interest 
to the general reader, and especially to those who have been connected 
with British Columbia or attracted to it by the reports of its gold fields 
and diggings. The first task of the miner in new portions of a gold 
country is prospecting. To accomplish this he equips himself with a 
"pan," and a small quantity of quicksilver. The river sides are 
generally first examined, although many diggings are found away 


from the banks. The deposit usually consists of a thick, stiff mud or 
clay, intermixed with stones. In some cases the deposit is covered 
with sand, so that before the "pay dirt" is reached the surface has to 
be removed. The workings on rivers and their banks are called 
" bars," and are often named after the prospector or discoverer. 

How IT is USED. As soon as the prospector reaches a spot which 
he thinks will yield gold to pay, he unstraps his pan, and fills it with 
the earth to be tested. Then squatting near the water he holds the 
pan by the rim, and dips it into the water, giving it a sort of rotary 
motion, stirring and pressing the contents occasionally until the whole is 
fully saturated. The larger pieces of stone are thrown out, and the 
edge of the pan tilted upwards, when additional water is poured on, 
and the rotary motion continued until the lighter portion of the earth 
passes over the edge of the pan and nothing but a few pebbles and 
specks of black or metallic sand are left, among which the gold, if 
there is any, will be found. The specific gravity of the black sand 
being nearly equal to that of the gold, while wet they cannot be at 
once separated, and the nuggets, if any, being taken out, the pan is 
laid in the sun or near a fire to dry. When dry the particles of sand, 
being lighter, are blown away ; or if the gold is very fine it is 
amalgamated with quicksilver. 

RICH DIGGINGS. Miners and prospectors know by practice how 
much gold in a pan will constitute a rich digging, which is usually 
expressed by giving the earth a value as "5," " 10," or " 15 cent dirt," 
the yield in money. From the roughness of the process, however, pan- 
ning never gives the full value of the actual gold in the earth tested. 
"If the gold should be in flakes, a good deal is likely to be lost in the 
process, as it will not then sink readily to the bottom of the pan, and 
is more likely to be washed away with the sand, and success depends 
on the gold settling at the bottom of the pan or other vessel used." 

THE ROCKER OR CRADLE. Mayne, in his book, says : "The 'pan' 
is hardly ever used except in prospecting, so that the ' rocker ' or 
1 cradle ' may be described as the most primitive appliance used in 
gold washing. In the winter of 1859," he continues, "when I first 
went up the Fraser, the rocker was the general machine the use of 
sluices not having then begun. It was used in California in 1848, 
being formed rudely of logs, or the trunk of a tree ; but properly 
made, it consists of a box 3J to 4 feet long, about 2 feet wide and 
1J deep. The top and one end of this box are open, and at the lower 
end the sides slope gradually until they reach the bottom. At its. 


head is attached a closely jointed box with a sheet iron bottom, 
pierced with holes sufficiently large to allow pebbles to pass through. 
This machine is provided with rockers, like a child's cradle, while 
within, cleats are placed to arrest the gold in its passage. 

How IT is WORKED. "One of the miners then, the cradle being 
placed at the water's edge, feeds it with earth, while another rocks 
and supplies it witli water. The dirt to be washed is thrown into 
the upper iron box, and a continual stream of water being poured in, 
it is disintegrated, the gold and pebbles passing down to the bottom, 
where the water is allowed to carry the stones away and the cleats 
arrest the precious metal. When the gold is very tine," he says, "he has 
seen a piece of cloth laid along the bottom of the box, covered with 
quicksilver to arrest the gold. When a party of miners work with 
rockers, they divide the labor of rocking, carrying water, if necessary, 
and digging equally among themselves. The rocker is the only appar- 
atus that can be at all successfully worked single-handed ; and rough 
as it appears and really is, men make thirty to tifty dollars a day 
with it, while far greater sums have been known to be realized by it. 
In washing gold, quicksilver has to be used always, except when the 
mineral is found very large and coarse. Even then, the earth is gen- 
erally made to pass over some quicksilver before it escapes altogether, 
in order to preserve the finer particles, which forms an amalgam re- 
taining the gold until it is retorted from it. In a ' rocker ' perhaps 
from eight to ten pounds of quicksilver may be used daily ; in a 
* sluice' of ordinary size from forty to tifty pounds per day. The 
same quicksilver can be used over and over again when the gold has 
been retorted from it. A ' Long Tom ' is an improved ' rocker.' 

"' SLUICING' is another method of gold washing which can be oper- 
ated on any scale, from two or three upon a river bar, to a large com- 
pany washing away an entire hill by the ' hydraulic ' process. 
Whatever may be the scale of the operations, sluicing is necessarily 
connected with a system of 'flumes' or wooden aqueducts of greater 
or less extent, either running along the back of a river bar and sup- 
plying the sluices, or intersecting the mining regions. * Sluice-boxes ' 
are of various sizes, but generally from '3 to 3 feet long, by about the 
same width. These are fitted closely together at the ends, so as to 
form a continuous, strongly-built trough of the required length, from 
15 or 20 to several thousand feet ; their make and strength depend- 
ing entirely upon the work they have to do. 


MINING AT HILL'S BAR. " The following is the mode adopted at 
Hill's Bar, on the Fraser River, in 1858 : The bar at that time ex- 
tended about a mile and a half. A flume was constructed, carrying 
the water from a stream which descended the mountain at its south- 
ern end along the whole length of the bar, and behind those claims 
which were being worked. From this flume each mirier led a sluice 
down towards the river, his sluice being placed at such an angle that 
the water would run with sufficient force to carry the earth but not, 
of course, the gold with it ; but regulated as to allow time for the 
riffles and quicksilver to catch the gold as it passes. The supply of 
water from the flume to each sluice is regulated by a gate in the side 
of the flume, which is raised and allows the quantity required to pass 
out. The price paid for this side stream varies with the cost of 
timber, engineering difficulties of making the flume, etc. It is ordin- 
arily established by the miners, who meet and agree to pay any 
individual or company who may undertake the work, a certain ratable 
rent for the water. The construction of these flumes is generally a 
profitable speculation for the contractor. The flume at Hill's Bar is 
said to have cost between seven thousand and eight thousand dollars, 
and each miner paid a dollar an inch daily .for his share of the water. 
Later the price was reduced, the usual price being about twenty-five 
cents an inch. The sluice-boxes at Hill's Bar were very slight, about 
an inch plank, as the dirt which had to pass along was not very 
coarse. Tn the bottom of each box was a grating, made of strips of 
plank nailed crosswise to each other, but not attached to the box like 
the riffles. In the interstices of these gratings quicksilver is spread 
to catch the fine gold the coarse being caught by the grating itself. 
The sluice is placed on trestles or legs, so as to raise it to the height 
convenient for shovelling the earth in ; the water is then let on, and 
men feed the sluice with earth from either side, while one or two, 
with iron rakes, stir it up or pull out any large stones which might 
break the gratings." 

WATER REGULATIONS. By a proclamation issued under the public 
seal of the colony of British Columbia, 6th January, 1860, the follow- 
ing rules were to be observed : In any sluice the water taken into a 
ditch shall be measured at the head of the ditch. No water shall be 
taken into a ditch except in a trough whose top and floor shall be 
horizontal planes; such trough to be continued to 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 the trough shall be con- 
sidered as the measure of the quantity of water taken by the ditch. 

AN INCH OF WATER. The Mineral Act of 1891 (as amended in 
1892 and 1893) states, the rules for measuring water to be: "The 
water taken into a ditch or sluice shall be measured at the ditch or 
sluice head. No water shall be taken into a ditch or sluice except in 
a trough placed horizontally at the place at which the water enters it. 
One inch of water shall mean half the quantity that will pass through 
an orifice two inches high by one inch wide, with a constant head of 
seven inches above the upper side of the orifice." The definition of 
"one inch of water" is rather obtuse and perplexing. 

HYDRAULIC MINING is operated on a larger scale. Sluices, however, 
are required, as in ordinary sluice mining, and the boxes are con- 
structed and put together in a manner somewhat similar ; but instead 
of being of light timber, are made of plank, backed by cross-pieces, so 
as to be of sufficient strength to bear the passage of any quantity of 
earth and stones which may be forced through them by the flood of 
water used. They are made shorter and wider, being, according to 
Mayne, who, having witnessed hydraulic mining at Timbuctoo in 
California, states they are generally about fourteen inches long, by 
three to four feet wide. Their bottoms, instead of gratings, are lined 
with wooden blocks, like wood-pavement, for resisting the friction of 
the debris passing over it, the interstices being filled with quicksilver 
to catch the fine gold. The sluice thus prepared, is placed in a 
slanting position, near the foot of the hill or bank to be operated on. 

SCIENTIFIC MINING. The operation consists of throwing an immense 
stream of water upon the bank or hill, as a fire engine plays upon a 
burning building. The water is led through gutta percha or canvas 
hose, four to six inches in diameter, with a force proportionate to the 
pressure of the weight from the head or pen stock. It is consequently 
driven with great force, and dissolves the bank rapidly. "There is 
more knowledge and skill required in this work than would at first 
sight be supposed necessary. The purpose of the man who directs 
the hose is to undermine the surface as well as wash away the face 
of the bank. He, therefore, directs the water at a likely spot until 
indications of a 'cave-in' become apparent. Notice being given, 
the neighborhood is deserted. The earth far above cracks, and 


down comes all the face of the precipice (if the work is on a side hill) 
with the noise of an avalanche." By this means a hill several hundred 
feet higher than the water could reach, may be washed away and 
rendered profitable, which would not pay by cradle-washing, hand- 
sluicing or by tunnelling. 



LARGE GRAVEL DEPOSITS. In the rich mining region of Cariboo, 
preparations are being made (1893) to carry on hydraulic mining on 
an extensive scale. The Cariboo Hydraulic Company have secured 
several rich gravel deposits on the south bank of the Quesnelle River, 
near the forks of the river, and are excavating a ditch twenty miles 
long to furnish a supply of water. They have 150 men at work, and 
next season the mines will be fully equipped and in working order. 
Another company have eight mining locations on Horse Fly River, 
covering an area of over one thousand acres, situated fifty miles 
north-east of the One Hundred and Eight Mile House, on the 
Cariboo road. The " Discovery " mine one of the eight will be 
opened in the first place. Seventy-five men thirty-one of them 
Japanese are at work on ditches. One of the ditches is ten miles 
long. It will convey water from Mussel Creek to the mines. In 
addition to this ditch, a pipe is being constructed, thirty inches in 
diameter, and 8,330 feet in length, to be used in conveying the water 
across four depressions, two of them fully 200 feet in depth. The 
steel plate of which this pipe is made weighs 170 tons. Messrs. 
McGillivray & Armstrong, of Vancouver city, are the builders. It 
will be conveyed to Cariboo this winter (1893) on sleighs. 

AN EXPERIENCED MANAGER. The manager of the company (The 
Horse Fly Hydraulic Co.) has been for twenty years engaged in 
similar work in California, and brings along with him great experi- 
ence. He states that the gravel deposits in the region referred to 
are of much higher grade than those of California, and are probably 
the most extensive and richest in the world, only requiring capital to 


open up their vast resources. Sample lots have been washed, and gave 
from twenty cents to three dollars per cubic yard. Application has 
been made to Parliament for the construction of a railway to connect 
with the Canadian Pacific Railway system near Kamloops. A charter 
has been granted for another railway the Canada Western to cross 
the Cariboo region from Vancouver Island, entering the mainland 
near Bute Inlet. The financial depression of 1893 delayed the 
construction of this railway for the time being. 

QUARTZ-MINING is looked forward to, in the near future, in British 
Columbia with expectations of great success. Reports from the 
Kootenay district of abundance of ore, rich in gold, and silver, and 
lead, are received daily. Capitalists are investing. The Canadian 
Pacific Railway has constructed a branch line to Kootenay from near 
Revelstoke. Surveys are being made this summer (1893) from the 
east, by way of Lethbridge and Fort McLeod through Crow's Nest 
Pass, to connect with the branch lines already constructed by the ' 
Canadian Pacific Railway, as mentioned. The Cariboo district is 
awaiting railway communication to have a number of rich quartz 
locations developed. 

THE GOLD COMMISSIONER for that district, in his report for 1893, 
s ays : " From evidences afforded me in my official position, I am led 
to the conclusion that the district is entering upon a new and pros- 
perous career, scarcely inferior and certainly more lasting than the 
famous golden days of the early sixties. . . . Where absentees 
have invested, experienced miners were first sent to exploit the 
ground, and make a thorough examination of the facilities for 
working, and report before development works were undertaken. 
. . . The unsettled state of the silver market, and the probable 
construction of a line of railway into Cariboo in the near future, 
have had much to do with attracting the attention of the mining 
world to the gold fields of our district." 

RICH GOLD REGIONS. So is it also in the Cassiar district, and as 
far north as the Babine mountains, the Stickeen and the Liard 
rivers. On Vancouver Island, near Alberni, Chinese miners have 
been at work for several years at a place they have named China 
Creek ; and, in 1893, other locations have been taken up, which in 
three tunnels on the Golden Eagle claim had given excellent results. 
At Thunder Hill Mine, in East Kootenay, the gold commissioner's 
report for 1893 states that the work has been active during the 
summer. Two steam drills have been in use, which have worked to 


great advantage. Large quantities of concentrating ore have been 
taken out and stored in bins, ready to be transported to the concen- 
trating works on the shores of the Columbia Lake, a distance of about 
one and three-quarter miles, as soon as the erection of the machinery 
is completed, and the tramway leading from the mine to works in 
running order. The concentrating plant is of a capacity of fifty tons 
a day. 

THE MODE OF TREATING THE ORE is described as follows: "It 
passes from the crushers to the rolls; then to the screens, and 
descends to the jigs." The concentrates resulting from this treatment 
-are here withdrawn, whilst the " slimes " undergo fine concentration 
on double revolving " buddies" or slime tables. The tramway is on 
a descending grade from the mine. The trucks are run by gravitation. 
The Company contemplates working the mine with a 250-ton plant, 
when the present plant shall have proved itself an established success 
in dealing with the ores from the mine. 

QUARTZ MILL IN CALIFORNIA. The working of a quartz mill in 
Nevada county, California, crushed on an average thirty tons daily ; 
value of ore, $60 to $70 per ton. The quartz is picked or blasted out 
in the usual way, then conveyed by tramway to the mill, where it is 
broken by hand into pieces about the size of an egg. (This was the 
process in 1860.) The broken ore was then introduced into boxes 
over which stood a series of heavy stampers, made of iron, or wood 
shod with iron. The stampers were moved by cogs connected with a 
revolving wheel, which lifted them and let them slip down into the 
boxes. The quartz mill referred to had thirty-four of these stampers. 
The stamping boxes were supplied with water by a hose or pipe on 
one side, while on the other side is a hole, through which the quartz, 
as it is crushed, passes out in the form of a thick white fluid. As it 
comes out it is received upon a frame work, placed at such an angle 
that it passes slowly over it ; on this frame are several quicksilver 
riffles, which catch and amalgamate the gold as it glides along. 
Beyond this again is another frame, over which is spread a blanket, 
which arrests any fine particles which escape the quicksilver. Even 
with all this care, there is considerable waste, and the * tailings,' or 
refuse, is generally worth a second washing." 

Although the rush of miners was nothing like equal to that of the 
former year, yet on the Lower Fraser, as well as on the Upper Fraser 
-and on the Thompson River, large quantities of gold were obtained. 
Improved roads, also, lowered the price of provisions, enabling the 


miners to reach the interior of the country with much less toil and 
privation than formerly. During the latter part of 1859, prospectors 
had pushed along the Quesnelle and Swift Rivers. They reported 
gold there in abundance, and of a larger grade than that which had 
been found on the bars of the lower rivers. Governor Douglas, 
accompanied by his secretary, A. G. Young, paid a visit to the mining 
localities in June, going along the Lillooet-Harrison road, and to Port 
Douglas, encouraging the miners and assisting Colonel Moody in his 
active endeavors to make the colony prosperous. On June 15th, he 
issued a proclamation regulating the fees of pilots. __ The port of 
Queensborough was defined to " comprise all the waters, mouths and 
channels of Fraser River, between the deep water of the Gulf of 
Georgia and a line drawn due north and south through the eastern 
extremity of Free Island." 

QUEENSBOROUGH was now the commercial centre of the new colony 
of British Columbia. On the 2nd of June, 1859, Governor Douglas 
issued a proclamation establishing the tariff of custom duties to be 
levied in the colony, and declaring the port of Queensborough to be 
" from and after the 15th of June, now next, the sole port of entry 
for all vessels entering Fraser River, and for all goods imported by 
sea into the ports of British Columbia adjacent to Fraser River." 
A most successful sale of Queensborough town lots was held early in 
June. The prices ranged at from $100 to $1,925, the latter being the 
price stated of lot 11, block 5, to D. F. G. Macdonald ; $1,900 for 
lot 7, to Wolff & Simpson; $1,700 for lot 10, to Henderson & Burnaby. 
The lowest price of the eight lots sold in block 5 was lot 2, $1,500, to 
Henderson & Burnaby. Lot 2, block 6, opposite to A. DeCosmos, for 
$1,175, and lot 8, block 9, to Dr. J. S. Helmcken at $100. 

To ENCOURAGE SETTLEMENT on Vancouver Island, about 20,000 acres 
of land were advertised to be put up for sale by auction on the 1st of 
August, at an upset price of $1.00 (4s. 2d.) per acre, in the districts of 
Esquimalt, Metchosin, Sooke, Lake and North and South Saanich. 
On the mainland, in the new colony, the building of roads, making 
surveys, etc., were carried on with vigor ; Colonel Moody with untiring 
zeal, urged on the development of the country. Many of the immi- 
grants did not confine their attention to gold-digging. Intelligent 
adventurers saw that the country possessed riches in other respects. 
Its inexhaustible wealth of valuable timber, the excellent fish of 
almost every description which swarmed in its rivers, lakes and inlets,. 


and the immense deposits of coal cropping out, in many localities, 
were not allowed to pass unnoticed. Not a few of the new-comers 
from Great Britain, from Canada, and from the United States also> 
decided to make homes for themselves in British Columbia, and were 
content to remain in the country, willing to give it their best energies, 
and to assist in developing and building it up. 

In the meantime many improvements as well as new roads were 
required. Steamers were placed on the lakes connected with the 
Harrison-Lillooet route. The road of 1858 was widened and extended. 
Villages sprung up at different points. Wonderful energy was 
displayed by those hunters after gold, in making improvements and 
furnishing materials for steamers, hoisting and pumping machinery.. 
Lumber was supplied from the sawpit close by; the "top sawyer" 
deserved his title. Governor Douglas had his time fully occupied 
with the multifarious duties which pertained to his dual office in both 
colonies. The San Juan Island difficulty, and the location of the 
international boundary amongst the islands in the Gulf of Georgia, 
caused him considerable anxiety. It is believed that if Governor 
Douglas could have had his way, he would have made short work of 
the United States troops. 

On the 20th July, 1859, a proclamation was issued by Governor 
Douglas, setting forth that her Majesty had decided to change the 
name of the capital of the colony of British Columbia from Queens- 
borough or as it was sometimes called, Queenborough to that of 
NEW WESTMINSTER. There had been some dispute of the use of the 
letter "s," in spelling the word. The proclamation declared that 
(henceforth the capital should be called and known as New West- 
minster^ and be "so described in all legal processes and official 
documents." A number of proclamations were issued during the 
year, of which copies were transmitted to the Secretary of State for 
the Colonies in London. This, together with lengthy reports on 
various subjects, entailed a vast amount of labor on the governor 
and his secretary. 

AFTER HIS RETURN from an official tour in British Columbia, during 
which he visited the towns of New Westminster, Langley, Douglas, 
Hope and Yale, he travelled through the passes of Fraser River to 
Spuzzum, and inspected all the mining districts west of that place. 
His Excellency made a lengthy report, dated October 18th, 1859, 
which he transmitted as a despatch to his grace the Duke of 


Among other things, it said "the district between Hope and 
Yale is not as populous as last year, the present mining population 
consisting of about 600 persons. The mining population from 
Yale to the Fountain is supposed to exceed 800 men, and about 
1,000 men are engaged in the same pursuits between Alexandria, 
Fort George and Quesnelle River. The entire white population of 
British Columbia does not probably exceed 6,000 men ; there being, 
with the exception of a few families, neither wives nor children to 
refine and soften, by their presence, the dreariness and asperity of 
existence. The value of the present gold exports from British 
Columbia is estimated at .14,000 a month, or 168,000 per annum ; 
but this estimate does not include the large amount of gold dust 
remaining in the hands of miners, nor give a just idea of the whole 
quantity produced, which no doubt far exceeds the value herein 

" No schools have been as yet established in the colony ; but my 
attention will be given to the subject of education, and provision 
made for elementary schools, whenever the wants of the country 
render them necessary." The report continues: "The colony is yet 
destitute of one highly important element it has no farming class, the 
population being almost entirely composed of miners and merchants. 
The attention of the Government has been very anxiously directed ta 
the means of providing for that want, by the encouragement of 
agricultural settlers, a class which must eventually form the basis of 
the population, cultivate and improve the face of the country, and 
render it a fit habitation for civilized man. The miner is at best a 
producer, and leaves no traces but those of desolation behind ; the 
merchant is allured by the hope of gain ; but the durable prosperity 
and substantial wealth of States is, no doubt, derived from the 
cultivation of the soil. Without the farmer's aid, British Columbia 
must for ever remain a desert be drained of its wealth, and 
dependent on other countries for daily food." 

The report further says : "The great object of opening roads from 
the sea-coast into the interior of the country, and from New West- 
minster to Burrard's Inlet and Pitt River, continues to claim a large 
share of my attention. The labor involved in these works is enor- 
mous ; but so essential are they as a means of settling and developing 
the resources of the country, that their importance can hardly be 
over-rated : and I, therefore, feel it incumbent on me to strain every 
nerve in forwarding the progress of undertakings so manifestly con- 
ducive to the prosperity of the colony, and which, at the same time, 
cannot fail, ere long, to produce a large increase in the public revenue. 
We hope to complete the last section of a pack-road leading by the 
left bank of the Fraser, from Derby to Lytton, a distance of 17Q 
miles, on or before the 1st day of February next." 

QUEEN CHARLOTTE ISLANDS. Mr. (Major) William Downie's report 
of the expedition which set out in July, 1859, to explore Queen 


Charlotte Islands, is made the subject of a despatch dated November 
21st. Mr. Downie and the body of miners were unsuccessful in 
finding gold on these islands in paying quantity. With the exception 
of Mr. Downie and a few others who crossed to Fort Simpson, the 
main body returned to Victoria. Mr. Downie and his party com- 
menced the ascent of the Skeena River in a canoe. They reached 
the " Forks," a distance of 110 miles from the sea, via Port Essington. 
They were then obliged to travel fifty-five miles by land to the 
Indian Village of " Naas Glee," and fifteen miles beyond, they 
reached Babine Lake, which is about one hundred miles long and of 
sufficient depth to float vessels of the largest class. A stretch of low 
table-land thirteen miles wide, separates Babine Lake from Stuart 
Lake, which, although not as large as Babine, is equally well adapted 
for navigation. Mr. Downie and party, after much suffering and 
privation, eventually arrived at Fort St. James, on Stuart Lake. 
They made several important discoveries in course of the journey 
finding some gold, extensive coal beds, and the land between the 
forks and " Naas Glee " well adapted for farming and suitable for 
the construction of roads. Major Downie recently published an 
interesting book, entitled " Hunting for Gold." He died at San 
Francisco, January, 189,4. 

COAST INDIANS SMALL-POX. The summer passed in Victoria 
without much excitement. Trade was brisk with the Hudson Bay 
Company. Their Alaska supply trade was continued as usual. A 
large quantity of grain and provisions was supplied from their out- 
lying establishments notably from those of the Puget Sound Com- 
pany and the home farm at Victoria. The fur trade was not as yet 
seriously interfered with, except along the Fraser and Thompson 
rivers, and in the Okanagan country and on the Columbia River. 
The Indians along the coast, even beyond the Queen Charlotte 
Islands, were, however, attracted by the arrival of such large numbers 
of miners and the men-of-war men at Esquimalt. They came in 
thousands. A whole family men, women and children travelled 
in one canoe. The men became so dissipated and dangerous that the 
Government found it necessary to disarm them ; and their women so 
degraded that force was required on the part of the authorities to 
drive them back to their native villages. Those visits were most 
unfortunate for them and for those they came to see. It introduced 
amongst them disease, and contributed to that demoralization which 
since then has totally destroyed the inhabitants of many villages at 


that time populous and prosperous. Thousands were cut off by 

A GRATEFUL HUSBAND. Mayne says: "The Indians are well 
known to be polygamists, but 1 believe that a plurality of wives is 
general only among the chiefs of tribes, the rest being commonly too 
poor to afford this luxury. No other cause for such abstinence exists 
on their part. When Mr. Staines was the colonial chaplain at Vic- 
toria, the chief of the tribe residing there went to him for some medi- 
cine for his wife who was ill. He gave her something which cured 
her, and, to the astonishment of the chaplain and his family, a day or 
two afterwards the chief came to his house, leading his wife by the 
hand, and, in gratitude for her recovery, presented her to his bene- 
factor. On being remonstrated with, I believe, by the chaplain's wife, 
who objected, not at all unnaturally, to the nature of the offering, he 
said it was nothing not worth mentioning in fact, as he could easily 
spare her, she being one of eleven ! " 

POLYGAMY. The Rev. Sheldon Jackson, D.D., in his publication, 
"Alaska," says polygamy, with all its attendant evils, is common 
among many tribes. These wives are often sisters. Sometimes a 
man's own mother or daughter is among his wives. If a man's wife 
bears him only daughters, he continues to take other wives until she 
has sons. To secure the desired number of sons one of the Naas 
chiefs is said to have had forty wives. In the interior and farther 
north similar conditions exist. On the upper Yukon River the men 
multiply their wives as the farmer his oxen. The more wives, the 
more meat he can have hauled, the more wood cut, the more goods 
carried. A great chief said : " Women are made to labor. One of 
them can haul as much as two men can do. They pitch our tents, 
make and mend our clothing." 




AN AGREEMENT which had been made between the Rev. E. Cridge 
and the Hudson Bay Company created considerable discussion. It 
was brought before the House of Assembly by message from Gover- 
nor Douglas, which said : " I have to submit for your consideration, 
with the sanction of her Majesty's principal Secretary of State 
for the Colonies, the copy of a communication from the Rev. E. 
Cridge, Colonial Chaplain of Vancouver Island, tendering a continu- 
ance of his services in that capacity; and I have to request that the 
House will favor me with their opinion on the subject. 10th Sept., 

SALARY OF THE CHAPLAIN. " ' Memorandum of Salary, Allowance, 
etc., for a Clergyman for Vancouver Island. The Hudson Bay Com- 
pany are desirous of sending out a clergyman to Vancouver Island to 
be stationed in the vicinity of Victoria, the principal establishment 
in the island. He will have charge of a district or parish, and, in 
addition, will hold the appointment of chaplain of the Hudson Bay 
Company, and will attend to the spiritual wants of the free settlers, 
and of the officers, clerks and servants of the Hudson Bay Company 
stationed at Victoria, and at the various farms in the neighborhood. 

CHURCH AND PARSONAGE. "'The church is in progress of con- 
struction, in the vicinity of the fort, and will probably be completed 
by the time the clergyman may be expected to arrive at the island. 
The Hudson Bay Company propose that the remuneration for these 
services shall consist, first, of a parsonage and glebe of one hundred 
acres, of which thirty acres will be cleared and put in a cultivable 
state ; secondly, of a stipend of 300 per annum charged, with the 
sanction of the Colonial Office, on the fund arising from the sales of 
land of which funds the Company are trustees, etc.; thirdly, of an 
allowance of .100 per annum from the fur branch of the Company, 
for acting as chaplain to the Company and attending to the wants of 
the servants. 

RATIONS ALLOWED. " ' Until the house is finished, quarters will 
be provided for the clergyman in the fort. And till the land is put 
in a proper state for cultivation, rations will be allowed to him and 


his family, as provided for the officers of the Company. When the 
land is taken possession of by him, he will be expected to provide for 

BOARDING-SCHOOL. "'The Company think it very desirable that 
the clergyman should, as is done at Red River by the Bishop of 
Rupert's Land, take charge of a boarding-school, of a superior class, 
for the children of their officers, and would wish that he would take 
out with him, a gentleman and his wife capable of keeping a school 
of this nature. 

SCHOOL-HOUSE AND RESIDENCE. "'The fur-trade branch would 
find a school-house and residence for the master and his family, and 
will vote an annual grant of 100 in aid of the school. Should they 
give satisfaction to the gentlemen in the country, they might expect 
from thirty to forty pupils, and the usual payment for each pupil 
would be .20 per annum for board, lodging and education. 

" ' A FREE PASSAGE will be allowed from London to Vancouver 
Island to the clergyman, his family and servants, and also to the 
school-master and his family. 

ENGAGEMENT FOR FIVE YEARS. u * It is understood that the 
engagement shall be for five years, at the expiration of which a free 
passage home will be granted, should the clergyman wish to return ; 
or, on the contrary, afresh engagement may be entered into. It is also- 
to be understood that in the event of misconduct, the engagement 
may at any time be cancelled, on the recommendation of the Governor 
of Vancouver Island, and with the sanction of the Secretary of State 
for the Colonies. (Signed) A. COLVILLE, Governor Hudson Bay 
House (London), Aug. 12th, 1854. 

" ' I hereby accept the terms and conditions as specified in the fore- 
going memorandum, September 13th, 1854. (Signed) EDWARD 

THE SUBJECT DISCUSSED. In discussing the subject before the 
House the Speaker maintained that the appointment of Mr. Cridge 
was a permanent one, and that he was entitled to a salary until such 
time as the connection between Church and State was abolished. 
The following resolution was passed, the Speaker dissenting : 

THE SPEAKER DISSENTED. "Resolved, This House is of opinion 
that by the memorandum of agreement dated 12th August, 1854, the 
Rev. Mr. Cridge was evidently led to expect a renewal of his engage- 
ment on faithful service ; but the House would recommend the 
propriety of deferring the consideration of State and Church connec- 
tion until the House is enlarged, and the sentiments of the people can 
be better understood." 

A STARTLING FACT. Public attention having thus been called to 
the Clergy Reserve question, it was taken up by the Rev. W. F. 


Clark, Congregational Church Missionary, in a letter to the Colonist. 
In that letter he called attention "to the startling fact that there 
already exists in these young colonies, an embryo State Church. The 
arrangement recently made public, by which three-fourths of the 
salary of the Rev. E. Cridge is made a charge on the public funds, 
would be sufficient to show that we have the germ of this evil fully 
formed in our -midst. But from returns to the Imperial Parliament, 
just received, it appears that a Clergy Reserve of two thousand one 
hundred and eighteen acres of land has been set apart in Victoria 
district alone. Similar reservations, for aught we know, may have 
been made in other districts." 

OPPOSITION TO CLERGY RESERVES. "The returns just alluded ta 
also show that the Bishop of British Columbia, shortly to arrive, 
together with the Rev. Messrs. Gammage and Crickmer, come here, 
not merely as missionaries of the Episcopalian body, in which 
capacity they deserve to be cordially welcomed, but also as appointee? 
of the Government. Their names appear in the same list as those of 
the Governor, Chief Justice, Attorney-General, etc., as belonging to 
the staff of Government officials for the sister colony. The list is 
headed : " Appointments, etc., created by her Majesty's Government." 
There can be little doubt but that either Clergy Reserves have been 
made in British Columbia, or that the making of them will be one of 
the earliest steps to be taken after his Lordship's arrival." 

A PROSPECTIVE INCUBUS. " Now, sir," continues Mr. Clark, 
" permit me respectfully to ask my fellow-subjects if they are 
content that Church endowments should be made in these young 
regions at the rate of two thousand acres of land per district 1 And 
are they prepared for the struggling, jealousy and unseemly strife that 
must ensue if the incubus of a State Church is laid upon us ? If not, 
let protest and petition at once be resorted to, that this threatened 
evil may, if possible, be averted. . . . " 

SUNDRY OPINIONS. In a reply to Mr. Clark's letter, by Mr. A. D. 
Pringle, Fort Hope, the editor of the Colonist explains by adding : 
"The reserve, by return dated on July 30th, 1858, is 2,188 acres ^ 
and March 18th, 1859, the returns of all appointments, civil, military, 
and ecclesiastical, made or authorized by the home Government, 
includes the Bishop and those gentlemen. The salaries of the clergy- 
men are not chargeable to British Columbia, although their appoint- 
ments were authorized by the Government." The editor adds : "If 
British Columbia does not support a ' State Church' as well as the 
colony we cannot understand the following : Governor Douglas's 
despatch, Dec. 14th, 1858, says, 'I propose building a small church 
and parsonage, a court house and jail, immediately, at Langley, and 
to defray the expense out of the proceeds arising from the sale of 
town lands there.' " 


PUBLIC SENTIMENT RESPECTED. In the colonies of Vancouver 
Island and British Columbia, public sentiment was opposed to State 
Ohurchism, the Clergy Reserves proposals were therefore abandoned. 
When Bishop Hills arrived at Victoria in January, 1860, the grant of 
one hundred acres which was to have been made to Mr. Cridge was 
reduced to thirty acres in the city, and transferred under trustees to the 
Church. Mr. Cridge was licensed by the Bishop to preach in the district 
of Victoria, which terminated his colonial appointment. His salary, 
after 1860, was paid by the congregation, supplemented from the 
missionary funds from England. His ministrations were highly 
prized by his hearers, and were continued until 1875, when, owing 
to a difference of opinion between Bishop Hills and himself, respect- 
ing the introduction of ritualism into the Church, he left the Anglican 
Diocese and organized a Church, in 'connection with the Reformed 
Episcopal Clergy, A large majority of his former congregation 
seceded along with him. Amongst them was the former governor, 
Sir James Douglas, who presented the site on which the church was 
built, and in which Bishop Cridge continues (1894) to preach. Sir 
James also presented the Church with an organ. The nineteenth 
anniversary of the opening and dedication of the building was 
commemorated in November, 1893, by the venerable pastor. 

THE SECOND GENERAL ELECTION. Towards the close of the year 
1859, considerable interest was taken in the approaching general 
election. The first parliament of the colony of Vancouver Island 
was prorogued in November. It had existed since 1855. The new 
elections took place in January, 1860. The second parliament met 
in March of that year. The past year was noted for its projected 
improvements and for the voluminous reports sent to the governor 
by surveyors, prospectors and explorers. Judge Begbie's report was 
one of great length. Referring to the journey and report, Bancroft 
says: "Accompanied by his high-sheriff Nicoll, and his clerk and 
registrar Bushby, the 28th of March, 1859, Mr. Justice Begbie began 
a notable journey notable by reason of the shortness of the journey, 
and for the length of its description." 

BEGBIE'S REPORT. The report from the " CANOE COUNTRY " says 
miners are doing well, but roads are wanted, and people have to 
go on half rations and pay enormous prices for the necessaries of 
life. At Fort Alexander, 280 miles from the Forks of Thompson 
with the Fraser, in October, pork was $1.25 ; beans, 75 cents ; flour, 
75 cents; coffee, $1.50, and sugar, $1.00 per pound. In the early 



mining days, sixty miles above the Thompson country began the 
" CANOE COUNTRY ; " to the north of which was what was termed the 
4< BALLOON COUNTRY," and beyond that was the " CARIBOO COUNTRY." 
NON-RESIDENCE OF OFFICIALS. ^-Dissatisfaction was expressed in 
New Westminster on account of the non-residence at the capital of 
the colony of several of the leading officials. A Reform League was 
organized, and various public meetings were held, at which scathing 
speeches were delivered, grievances discussed, and condemnatory 
resolutions and protests passed. Notwithstanding this the new 


capital was making substantial progress. Mining interests, although 
somewhat depressed, held out good prospects for 1860 especially 
from reports received from miners who had reached the Quesnelle 
River. . The New Westminster Times commenced publication in 
September, 1859, with bright hopes for the future. Mount Baker, 
a short distance south of the international boundary line, showed a 
spurt of energy. The passengers by the steamer from New Westmin- 
ster to Victoria, on the 26th November, reported that volcanic peak 
to be seen in a state of active eruption, " puffing out large volumes of 
smoke, which upon breaking, rolled down the snow-covered sides of 
the mountain, forming a pleasing efiect of light and shade." 




IT would not serve any good purpose to attempt to follow the 
various successes or disappointments of the miners from place to 
place ; but as the correspondent of the London Times gave a compre- 
hensive account of the transactions during 1861, an extract from his 
report will give the reader a good idea of the work of that year. He 
says : " It is impossible to give a return of the * yield ' of gold 
produced by British Columbia, in the aggregate, with certainty. I 
shall merely attempt an approximation of the gross yield, from the 
best data within my reach. It is generally conceded that, including 
Ohinese, there were five thousand men engaged in gold digging this 
year. The various government returns of customs' duties, and of 
interior tolls charged on the passage of merchandise collected, justify 
this assumption, while the miners' licenses issued tend to corroborate it. 
The mining population in the Cariboo Country, including within the 
division of the Forks of the Quesnelle River (fifty miles below), is 
put down on general testimony (of miners, travellers, other residents, 
and government returns) at 1,500 men. 

"To work out the earnings of this aggregate of five thousand miners, 
I adopt a statement of names and amounts, made up from miners' 
information, of seventy-nine men who together took out in Cariboo, 
$926,680. The general opinion of the miners is, that (in addition to 
the Mucky ones' who made 'big strikes,' and which I limit to the 
above number of seventy-nine), every man who had a claim or a 
share in a claim made from $1,000 to $2,000. Of these there were 
at least four hundred, and taking their earnings at a medium or average 
between the two sums mentioned say, $1,500 to each they would 
produce $600,000. There remain 1,021 men to be accounted for. 
Putting their earnings at $7 a day each, which is the lowest rate of 
wages paid for hired labor in the Cariboo mines, and assigning only 
107 working days as the period of their mining operations during the 


season, to make allowance for its shortness by reason of the distance 
from the different points of departure and of bad weather, they 
would have taken out $764,729. These several sums added would 
make the yield of Cariboo and QuesnelJe, $2,291,409 to 1,500 men 
for the season, by far the greater portion, or nearly all, in fact, being 
from Cariboo ; although the north fork of Quesnelle is also very 
productive, and so rich as to induce its being worked, by fluming this 
winter, by about one hundred miners, who have remained for the 

"The remaining 3,500 of the mining population, who worked on 
Thompson River, the Fraser from Fort George downwards, Bridge 
River, Similkameen and Okanagan (very few), Rock Creek, and all 
other localities throughout the country, I shall divide into two classes : 
the first to consist of 1,500, who made $10 a day for, say, 180 days 
(Sundays thrown off), and which would give $2,700,000 for their 
joint earnings ; the second and last class of two thousand men, who 
were not so lucky, I shall assume to have made only $5 each a day 
for the same period, and which would give $1,800,000 as the fruit of 
their united labor. 

"The last three categories, which number 4,521 men, include the 
many miners who, in Cariboo, were making $20 to $50 a day each, 
as well as those who, in various other localities, were making from 
$15 to $100 a day occasionally; so I think my estimate, although 
not accurate, is reasonable and moderate. The government people 
think I have rather understated the earnings of the miners in these 
three classes of 4,521 men ; and the governor himself, who takes an 
absorbing interest in the affairs of this portion of his Government, 
and to whose ready courtesy I am indebted for some of the information 
given in this letter, as well as for much formerly communicated in 
my correspondence, thinks my estimate is a very safe one." 

From the different mining localities the value of the gold dust is 
given. The highest from Davis Creek, assayed by Messrs. Marchaud 
<fc Co., who gave the return, was 718 fine, value $18.97 T 6 4 <j per 
ounce (about 3 19s.). The lowest, which came from Williams 
-Creek, was 810 fine, value per ounce $16.72 T 4 <& (about 3 9s. 7d.). 
The average of all Cariboo dust was reckoned at 854 tine, 
value per ounce $17.65^ (3 13s. 6d.). From the following 
^oflicial table, from the report of the Minister of Mines, it 
would appear that the estimate made by the correspondent 
.of the Times is too high. The official table shows the 



actually known yield of gold and silver, the number of miners 
employed, and their average earnings per man, per year, from 1858 
to 1893. In the amounts given for the year 1880, the sum of $47,873 
is added for silver; and, in 1881, $73,984. No return of silver is 
given for other years : 


Amount of gold 
actually known 

Add a third more, 
estimate of gold 

Gold and Silver. 

Number of 


to have been ex- 
ported by Banks. 

carried away in 
private hands. 



per man. 

(6 months) 

| $390,265 
























| 3,184,700 


4,246,266 j 


























































































l-5th 212,534 































































































* This is exclusive of over 650 white men who, during the season of 1887, 
were working on or prospecting for mineral claims. 

t This is exclusive of over three hundred whites employed working on or 
prospecting for mineral claims. 




VARIOUS DENOMINATIONS. During 1859 no fewer than eleven 
missionaries were at work in the colonies of Vancouver Island and 
British Columbia on the mainland. Of these, four were in connec- 
tion with the Methodist denomination ; three were sent by the Society 
for the Propagation of the Gospel ; two by Miss (afterwards Baroness) 
Burdett-Coutts, including the labors of Mr. Duncan and the Rev. 
E. Cridge, the latter had for some years previously been acting as 
chaplain to the Hudson Bay Company. 

Up to the time of the arrival of the missionaries already mentioned 
religious instruction was furnished by the chaplains of the Hudson 
Bay Company. The first of their chaplains, under colonial rule, was 
the Rev. R. J. Staines. His successor was the Rev. E. Cridge, a man 
of sound views, and full of benevolence and energy. But the earliest 
of the missionaries who labored amongst the aborigines was William 
Duncan. He was sent out by the Church of England Missionary 
Society to work amongst the natives of the west coast. 

According to an account given by the Rev. Sheldon Jackson, D.D., 
in his work, " Alaska," Mr. Duncan had been an ordinary clerk in a 
mercantile establishment at some distance from London. The 
secretaries of the Church Missionary Society, upon one occasion, had 
appointed a missionary meeting in the church he attended. When 
they arrived from London the evening proved so stormy that only 
nine persons were present as an audience. One of the secretaries 
recommended dismissing the meeting, but another said, "no, we have 
come here to hold a missionary service, and I am in favor of holding 
it." The addresses were made, and at the close of the meeting, Mr. 
Duncan offered himself as a missionary. 

When he announced his purpose to his employers, they tried to 

dissuade him from going. They offered to increase his salary to one 

thousand dollars, and give him a certain percentage on the sales, that 

would have made him a wealthy man. But he would not be turned 



aside. He gave up all, and after some time at the missionary train- 
ing school, went out, as will be seen by the following narrative, to 
devote his whole energies to the cause. 

Upon his arrival at Fort Simpson, October 1st, 1857, Mr. Duncan, 
in his report, says : " I found located here nine tribes of Tsimpsean 
Incfians, numbering by actual count 2,300 souls. To attempt to 
describe their condition would be but to produce a dark and revolting 
picture of human depravity. The dark mantle of superstition 
enveloped them all ; and their savage spirits, swayed by pride, 
jealousy and revenge, were ever hurrying them on to deeds of blood. 
Their history was little else than a chapter of crime and misery. 
But was to come. The following year the discovery of gold 
brought in a rush of miners. Fire-water now began its reign of 
terror, and debauchery its work of desolation. On every hand were 
raving drunkards and groaning victims. The medicine-man's rattle, 
and the voice of wailing seldom ceased." 

One of the scenes to be met with, Mr. Duncan depicts as follows : 
"An old chief, in cold blood, ordered a slave to be dragged to the 
beach, murdered and thrown into the water. His orders were 
quickly obeyed. The victim was a poor woman. Two or three 
reasons are assigned for this foul act. One is that it is to take away 
the disgrace attached to his daughter, who has been suffering for 
some time with a ball wound in her arm. Another report is that he 
does not expect his daughter to recover, so he has killed this slave in 
order that she may prepare for the coming of his daughter into the 
unseen world. I did not see the murder, but immediately after saw 
crowds of people running out of the houses near to where the corpse 
was thrown and forming themselves into groups at a good distance 
away, from fear of what was to follow. Presently two bands of 
furious wretches appeared, each headed by a man in a state of nudity. 
They gave vent to the most unearthly sounds ; and the naked men 
made themselves look as unearthly as possible, proceeding in a creep- 
ing kind of stoop, and stepping like two proud horses, at the same 
time shooting forward each arm alternately, which they held out at 
full length, for a little time, in the most defiant manner. Besides 
this, the continual jerking back of their heads, causing their long 
hair to twist about, added much to their savage appearance. For 
some time they pretended to be seeking for the body, and the instant 
they came where it lay, they commenced screaming and rushing about 
jt like so many angry wolves. Finally they seized it, dragged it out 
of the water, and laid it on the beach, where they commenced tearing 
it to pieces with their teeth. The two bands of men immediately 
surrounded them, and so hid their horrid work. In a few minutes 
the crowd broke again, when each of the naked cannibals appeared 
with half of the body in his hands. Separating a few yards, they 
commenced, amid horrid yells, their still more horrid feast of eating 


the raw dead body. The two bands of men belonged to that class 
called ' medicine-men.' 

" I may mention that each party has some characteristics peculiar 
to itself ; but in a more general sense these divisions are but three, 
viz., those who eat human bodies, the dog-eaters, and those who 
have no custom of the kind. Early in the morning the pupils would 
be out on the beach, or on the rocks, in a state of nudity. Each had 
a place in the front of his own tribe ; nor did the intense cold inter- 
fere in the slightest degree. After the poor creature had crept about, 
jerking his head and screaming for some time, a party of men would 
rush out, and after surrounding him, would commence singing. The 
dog-eating party occasionally carried a dead dog to their pupil, who 
forthwith commenced to tear it in the most dog-like manner. The 
party of attendants kept up a low growling noise, or a whoop which 
was seconded by a screeching noise made from an instrument, which 
they believe to be the abode of a spirit. 

" In a little time the youth would start up again, and proceed a few 
more yards in a crouching posture, with his arms pushed out behind 
him, and tossing his flowing black hair. All the while he is earnestly 
watched by the group about him, and when he pleases to sit down 
they again surround him and commence singing. This kind of thing 
goes on, with several different additions, for some time. Before the 
prodigy finally retires, he takes a run into every house belonging to 
his tribe, and is followed by his train. When this is done, in some 
cases he has a ramble on the tops of the same houses, during which he 
is anxiously watched by his attendants, as if they expected his flight. 
By and by he condescends to come down, and then they follow him to 
his den, which is marked by a rope make of red bark, being hung over 
the doorway, so as to prevent any person from ignorantly violating 
its precincts. None are allowed to enter into that house but those 
connected with the art ; all I know, therefore, of their further pro- 
ceedings is that they keep up a furious hammering, singing and 
screeching for hours during the day. f 

" Of all these parties none are so much dreaded as the cannibals. 
One morning I was called to witness a stir in camp, which had been 
caused by this set. When I reached the gallery, I saw hundreds of 
Tsimpseans sitting in their canoes, which they had just pushed away 
from the beach. I was told the cannibal party were in search of a 
body to devour, and if they failed to find a dead one, it was probable 
they would seize the first living one that came that way ; so that all 
the people living near the cannibals' houses had taken to their canoes 
to escape being torn to pieces. It is the custom among these Indians 
to burn their dead ; but I suppose, for these occasions, they take care 
to deposit a corpse somewhere in order to satisfy these inhuman 

" These, then, are some of the things and scenes which occur 
during the winter months, while the nights are taken up with amuse- 
.ments, singing and dancing. Occasionally the medicine parties invite 


people to their several houses, and exhibit tricks before them of 
various kinds. Some of the actors appear as bears, while others wear 
masks, the parts of which are moved by strings. The great feature of 
their proceedings is to pretend to murder and then to restore life. 
The cannibal, on such occasions, is generally supplied with two, three, 
or four human bodies, which he tears to pieces before ' his audience. 
Several persons, either from bravado, or as a charm, present their 
arms for him to bite. I have seen several whom he had thus bitten, 
and I hear two have died from the effects." 

Such were the people Mr. Duncan had to deal with to teach and 
civilize. He opened his first school on June 28th, 1858, with twenty- 
six children, in the house of a chief. The interest grew so rapidly, 
that in July the erection of a school building was commenced. 
Before the close of the year there were 140 children and fifty 
adults in attendance. 

REGULATIONS FOR MET-LAH-KAT-LAH. As early as 1859 the question 
of removal was discussed, but the change was not made until May, 
1862, when Mr. Duncan decided on establishing a village on the old 
site at Met-lah-kat-lah, with the following regulations : 

"(1) To give up * Ahlied ' or Indian deviltry; (2) to cease calling 
in conjurers when sick; (3) to cease gambling; (4) to cease giving 
away their property for display ; (5) to cease painting their faces ; 
(6) to cease drinking intoxicating drink ; (7) to rest on the Sabbath ; 
(8) to attend religious instruction ; (9) to send their children to 
school ; (10) to be cleanly; (11) to be industrious; (12) to be peace- 
ful; (13) to be liberal and honest in trade; (14) to build neat 
houses; (15) to pay the village tax." 

THE REMOVAL DESCRIBED. Mr. Duncan, in describing the removal, 
says: " The Indians came out of their lodges and sat around in a semi- 
circle, watching the proceedings. They knew something was going to 
happen, but they did not know what. When an Indian watches, he 
sits upon the ground, brings his knees up to his chin, wraps his 
mantle round him, puts his head down, and, mute and motionless, 
looks, at a distance, like a stone. They were thus seated, and the 
question was, ' Will anyone stand out in the midst of the scoffing 
heathen and declare themselves Christians 1' 

OLD TIES BROKEN. " First there came two or three, trembling, 
and said they were willing to go anywhere. Others were encouraged ; 
and on that day fifty stood forth, and gathered such things as they 
needed, put them into their canoes, and away they went. On that day 
every tie was broken ; children were separated from their parents, 
husbands from wives, brothers from sisters; houses, land and all 
things were left such was the power at work in their minds. They 
occupied six canoes and numbered about fifty souls men, women 
and children. Many Indians were seated on the beach watching our 


departure with solemn arid anxious faces, and some promised to follow 
us in a few days. 

A HAPPY FAMILY. "The party with me," continues Duncan, 
"seemed filled with a solemn joy as we pushed off, feeling that their 
long-looked-for-flit had actually commenced. I felt we were beginning 
an eventful page in the history of this poor people, and earnestly 
sighed to God for His help and blessing. The next day, 28th May, 
we arrived at our new home. The Indians I had sent on before, with 
the raft, I found hard at work clearing ground and sawing plank. 
They had carried all the raft up from the beach excepting a few 
heavy beams ; erected two temporary houses, and had planted four 
bushels of potatoes for me. Every night we assembled, a happy 
family, for singing and prayer. I gave an address on each occasion 
from some portion of scriptural truth suggested to me by the events 
of the day. On the 6th of June a fleet of about thirty canoes arrived 
from Fort Simpson. They formed nearly the whole of one tribe 
called Keetlahn with two of their chiefs. We now numbered be- 
tween three hundred and four hundred souls, and our evening meet- 
ings became truly delightful." 

Bishop of British Columbia visited the new station, and baptized 
fifty-seven adults and children. He writes : "It was my office to 
examine the candidates for baptism. I was several days engaged in 
the work. One day I was engaged from eight o'clock in the morning 
until one o'clock at night. It was the last day I had, and they 
pressed on me continually to be examined. Night and darkness 
came. The Indians usually go to bed with the sun, but now they 
turned night into day in order that they might be 'fixed in God's 
ways,' they said. 

THE LITTLE OIL LAMP. "'Any more Indians'?' I kept saying, 
as eight o'clock, nine o'clock, ten o'clock, twelve o'clock, and one 
o'clock came, and there were always more Indians wishing to be 
' fixed ' on God's side. I shall never forget the scene. The little oil 
lamp was not enough to dispel the gloom or darkness of the room, but 
its light was sufficient to cast a reflection on the countenance of each 
Indian as he or she sat before me. The Indian countenance is usually 
inexpressive of emotion ; but now, when they spoke of prayer and 
trust in God there was the uplifted eye and evident fervor ; and when 
they spoke of their sins there was a downcast look the flush came 
and went on their cheeks, and the big tear frequently coursed from 
their manly eyes. Their whole hearts seemed to speak out of their 


ONE THOUSAND PEOPLE. " The settlement grew into one thousand 
people, forming the healthiest and strongest on the coast. Rules 
were laid down for the regulation of the community, to which 
all were required to conform. All were required to attend church 
and send their children to school. Industrious habits were encour- 
aged, and the people educated as farmers, blacksmiths, carpenters, 
merchants, etc. They built good cottages, and a Gothic church, 
modelled after the old English cathedral, capable of seating one 
thousand persons. It was built by the Indian mechanics of the 
village. The average winter attendance is six hundred to eight hun- 
dred. They erected a school building to accommodate seven hun- 
dred pupils. They also had shops and a storehouse, saw mill, a 
salmon cannery, etc., all owned and managed by the Indians, while 
all around the bay were well cultivated gardens and potato patches. 
The main street of the village, along the beach, was lighted with 
street lamps. Five hundred and seventy-nine adults had been bap- 
tized at this mission ; 410 infant baptisms ; 243 deaths among the 
Christian portion of the people ; 137 Christian marriages, indepen- 
dent of those who were found married according to their tribal cus- 
toms. A large number of 'catechumens ' were under instruction as 
candidates for church membership. 

BAND OF TWENTY-FOUR INSTRUMENTS. "The population is divided 
into ten companies or wards, each having its elder to look after its 
religious services, its chief as leader in social gatherings, and one or 
two constables. The village had a brass band of twenty-four 
instruments, a public reading-room, and public guest-house for the 
lodging of strange Indians. Fifty dwellings (two-stories) were in 
process of erection at the time of the Rev. Dr. Jackson's visit in 1879. 
The mission force then was Mr. Wm. Duncan, Superintendent ; Rev. 
W. H. Collison and wife, and David Leask, native assistant. Dr. 
Jackson states : " These Indians are a happy, industrious, prosperous 
community of former savages, saved by the grace of God. This i& 
the oldest and most successful Indian mission on the coast, and 
illustrates what one consecrated man, by the Divine help, can 

INDIAN DANCE HOUSE SECURED. Rev. W. H. Collison established 
a mission at Massett, on Queen Charlotte Islands, amongst the 
Hydahs, in 1876. A large Indian dance house was secured for the 
mission. A morning school for women and children, and an evening 
one for men, were opened. In 1878, the average attendance at the 


morning school was about fifty. At the Sabbath services the attend- 
ance was from three hundred to four hundred. Thirty " catechu- 
mens " were under instruction for church membership, four of those 
being principal chiefs. One of the chiefs, " Cow-hoe," was under 
special instruction for a teacher. Mr. Collison and wife being required 
at the head mission, Met-lah-kat-lah, Rev. George Sneath, formerly 
of the Central African Mission, replaced them at Massett. Shortly 
before leaving Massett, Mr. Collison wrote : 

" One of the principal chiefs died a short time since. I visited 
him during his illness, and held service in his house weekly, for the 
five weeks preceding his death. On the morning of the day on which 
he died I visited him, and found him surrounded by the men of his 
tribe and the principal medicine-man, who kept up his charms and 
incantations to the last. He was sitting up and appeared glad to see 
me, and in answer to my inquiries he informed me he was very low, 
indeed, and his heart weak. . . . His death was announced 
by the tiring of several cannon which they have in the village. On 
my entering the house, the scene which presented itself was indescrib- 
able. Shrieking, dancing, tearing and burning their hair in the tire; 
while the father of the deceased, who had been pulled out of the tire, 
rushed to it again and threw himself upon it. He was with difficulty 
removed, and I directed two men to hold him while I endeavored to 
calm the tumult. 

" I was very much shocked to find that a young man, a slave, had 
been accused by the medicine-man, as having bewitched the chief and 
induced his sickness. In consequence of this he had been stripped and 
bound hand and foot in an old outhouse, and thus kept for some days 
without food. I only learned this about one hour before the death of 
the chief, and it was well I heard it even then, as it was determined the 
young man should be shot, and one of the relatives of the chief was 
ready with his gun to carry out the threat. 'I lost no time in calling 
the chiefs and friends of the deceased, and showed them the wicked- 
ness and sinf ulness of such proceedings. They accepted my advice. 
The young man was unbound. He came to the mission to have his 
wounds dressed ; his wrists were swollen to an immense size, and his 
back, from hip to shoulder, lacerated and burned to the bone by 
torches of pitch-pine. 

" The dead chief was laid out, and all those of his crest, or totem, 
came from the opposite village, bringing a large quantity of swan 
down, which they scattered over and around the corpse. At my 
suggestion, they departed from the usual custom of dressing and 
painting the dead, and instead of placing the corpse in a sitting 
posture, they consented to place it on the back. The remains were 
decently interred. I gave an address and prayed. Thus their 
custom of placing the dead in hollowed trees, carved and erected near 
the house, has been broken through ; and since this occurred, many of 


the remains which had been thus placed, have been removed and 
buried. Dancing, which was carried on every night, without inter- 
mission, during our first winter on the islands, has been greatly 
checked. Several, including two of the chiefs, have given it up 
entirely. The medicine-men have informed them that those who give 
up dancing will die soon. They are well aware that the abandonment 
of this practice will weaken their influence, and hence their 

ALERT BAY MISSION. A chief from the northern end of Vancouver 
Island had visited Met-lah-kat-lah, and was so favorably impressed 
with the progress the people had made there, that he requested a teacher 
for his tribe. He said : "A rope had been thrown out from Met-lah- 
kat-lah which was encircling and drawing together all the Indian 
tribes into one common brotherhood." In 1878, Rev. A. J. Hall 
opened a school and established a mission at Alert Bay. They 
were at that time given to deadly feuds, dog-feasts, slave-catching 
expeditions and infanticide. He wrote: 

"The medicine-men still exercise much power. Passing a house 
he heard strange noises. A medicine-woman was blowing on the 
breast of a sick woman, and occasionally making a peculiar howl. 
For the blowing she was paid two blankets. A famous doctor was 
recently sent for from a neighboring village. Mr. Hall heard him 
blowing in the same way as the medicine-woman. For his visit he 
received thirty blankets. These people," said Mr. Hall, "are divided 
into clans, and each clan when dancing imitates an animal. The 
children follow their fathers and grandfathers in the same dance, 
year by year. One party, when they perform, are hung up with 
hooks in a triangular frame, one hook being stuck into the back and 
two more into the legs; suspended in this way they are carried 
through the village. Another clan have large fish-hooks put into 
their flesh to which lines are attached. The victim struggles to get 
away, and those who hold the lines haul him back ; eventually his 
flesh is torn and he escapes. By suffering in this way they keep up 
the dignity of their ancestors and are renowned for their bravery." 

The Church Missionary Society were so much encouraged by the 
progress of the missions that they erected them into a bishopric called 




MAYNE'S REPORT, ETC. Extensive surveys were made by the Royal 
Engineers in 1859. Lieutenant (afterwards Commander) Richard 
Mayne, of her Majesty's surveying ship Plumper, made an overland 
journey across the districts bordering on the Thompson, Eraser, and 
Harrison rivers. "The report," says Governor Douglas, in trans- 
mitting it to Lord Lytton, "contains much interesting topographical 
information, and is accompanied by a valuable explanatory map of the 
places described." Lieutenant H. Spencer Palmer, of the Royal 
Engineers, made an exploratory trip to the Upper Eraser, a report of 
which Colonel Moody transmitted to Governor Douglas, along with 
sketch maps of the country. Lieutenant Palmer subsequently made 
a reconnaissance examination of the country from Fort Hope to 
Colville, and reported on the same. He took astronomical observations 
along the route, and furnished a sketch map, which was incorporated 
with former sketch plans, into a general map, showing the course of 
the rivers and position of towns from New Westminster, Kamloops, 
and Colville. 

FORT KAMLOOPS. The following is a portion of Commander Mayne's 
report : " It was eight o'clock in the morning when we came in sight 
of Kamloops. The view from where we stood was very beautiful. A 
hundred feet below us the Thompson, some three hundred yards wide, 
flowed leisurely past us. Opposite, moving directly towards us, and 
meeting the larger river nearly at right angles was the North River, at 
its junction with the Thompson wider even than that stream, and 
between them stretched a wide delta or alluvial plain, which was 
continued some eight or ten miles until the mountains closed in 
upon the river so nearly as only just to leave a narrow pathway by 
the water's edge. At this fork and on the west side stood Fort 
Kamloops, enclosed within pickets ; and opposite it was the village 
of the Shuswap Indians. Both the plain and mountains were covered 
with grass and early spring wild flowers. 


"We descended to the river side, and our Indian companions 
shouted until a canoe was sent across, in which we embarked and 
paddled across to the fort. Kamloops differed in no respect from 
other forts of the Hudson Bay Company that I had seen, being a 
mere stockade enclosing six or eight buildings, with a gateway at each 
end. Introducing ourselves to Mr. McLean, the Company's officer in 
charge of the fort and district, we were most cordially received, and 
with the hospitality common to these gentlemen, invited to stay in 
his quarters for the few days we must remain here. At this time the 
only other officer at the fort was Mr. Manson. With them, however, 
was staying a Roman Catholic priest, who, having got into some 
trouble with the Indians of the Okanagan country, had thought it 
prudent to leave that district and take up his abode for a time at 

How THE OFFICERS LIVE. "The life which these gentlemen lead at 
their inland stations must necessarily be dull and uneventful ; but 
they have their wives and families with them, and grow, I believe so 
attached to this mode of existence as rarely to care to exchange it for 
another. It may be well to describe here in as few words as possible, 
the position of the Hudson Bay Company in these districts, of which 
until lately they formed the sole white population. Those who have 
seen the ' fur traders ' only at their sea-ports, can form but a very 
inadequate idea of the men of the inland stations. 

THEIR CHARACTER. " Inland, you find men who, having gone 
from England or more frequently Scotland, as boys of fourteen and 
sixteen, have lived ever since in the wilds, never seeing any of their 
white fellow-creatures but the two or three stationed with them, 
except when the annual ' Fur Brigade ' called at their posts. They 
are almost all married and have large families, their wives being 
generally half-breed children of the older servants of the Company. 
Marriage has always been encouraged amongst them to the utmost, as 
it effectually attaches a man to the country, and tends to prevent any 
glaring immoralities among the subordinates, which if not checked 
would soon *lead to an unsafe familiarity with the neighboring 
Indians, and render the maintenance of the post very difficult, if not 

VISIT TO A SHUSWAP CHIEF. "The day after our arrival at Kam- 
loops we went across North River to the Indian village, to pay a visit 
to the chief of the Shuswap tribe, who was described to us as being 
somewhat of a notability. Here was the site of the old fort of the 


North- West Company which some twelve years back, after the 
murder of Mr. Black (the officer in charge of it) by the Indians, had 
been removed by his successor to the opposite side of the river. No 
doubt the old site was preferable to the new, which is subject to 
summer floods. Only the year before our visit, indeed, all the floors 
had been started by the water, and the occupants of the fort buildings 
had to move about in canoes. 

THE VILLAGES. "The interior of the hut is divided into compart- 
ments, and, upon entering, you may see a fire burning in each, with 
six or eight individuals huddled about it their dusky forms scarcely 
distinguishable in the cloud of white, blinding smoke, which has no 
other outlet than the door, or sometimes a hole in the roof. Their 
temporary hut is constructed of thin poles, covered with mats, but 
these are generally used only in the summer, and upon their fishing- 
expeditions and travels. It is not unusual, however, for the Indian 
to have a permanent residence in two or three villages, in which case 
he usually makes one set of planks useful for all, carrying them with 
him from place to place, and leaving only the upright posts and 
beams stationary. They have been known, however, from some 
superstitious reason, or because of sickness breaking out, to leave 
their villages with everything standing, and never to return to 

WALTER MOBEBLY, C.E., arrived in British Columbia, from Toronto, 
in 1859. Sir George Simpson had furnished him with a letter of 
introduction to Governor Douglas. Mr. Moberly mentions, in a small 
volume which he published and dedicated to Major-General Richard 
Clement Moody, that he was kindly received by the governor, and 
was offered an appointment in the government service, but that after 
having the duties explained, declined the offer. In the evening he 
dined at the governor's residence, and was introduced to Judge 
Begbie, Mr. Dallas, Dr. Helmcken, Mr. Donald Fraser and others, 
He remarks the pleasure he has in recalling that evening to memory, 
as one of the most enjoyable he ever spent ; " and the vast amount of 
information given by Sir James about British Columbia and the Pacific 
was afterwards invaluable. From that time," he adds, "until the 
day of his death, I found Sir James always a kind and hospitable 
friend, and it is now matter of history that he was an able and 
honorable governor." 

MEETS WITH HARDSHIPS. Mr. Moberly next proceeded to Fort 
Langley via Fort Yale to Port Douglas, and formed a mining company 


at Lillooet. The " mining company " operated as long as provisions 
could be obtained and then were obliged to retreat down Fraser 
River. His companions went to Lytton. He took the Harrison- 
Lillooet trail without any provisions. He says : " That was indeed 
a hungry day. In the afternoon, when walking along a high * bench ' 
of the river, I saw smoke rising from the river bottom, and soon 
caught sight of a camp with a newly -slaughtered animal hanging on 
a neighboring tree. I slid and scrambled down the steep bank, and 
made a rush for the carcass, from which I cut a good slice, and coming 
to the fire, much to the amusement of the men sitting there, told 
them I was starving and bound to have a meal, but could not pay for 
it. They brought out a pan of fried bacon and beans, a pot of coffee 
and some ' slap-jacks,' all of which I devoured with my slice of meat. 
They then produced some tobacco, and I felt happy." 

RETURN TRIP AND POOR LUCK. Resuming his journey, Mr. 
Moberly got a job at the end of the trail, unloading a scow of pro- 
visions, at $2.50 per day and breakfast included. The day's work 
was finished and the wages paid, with a little tobacco as bonus. At 
the little cabin in which they slept, Moberly was cleaning his revol- 
ver, and relates that " a man with a huge red beard and dressed in a 
large canvas overshirt came along, and eyeing my revolver, said, ' Cap, 
what sort of shooting iron is that?' He pulled out a Colt's navy 
revolver and said he would shoot a match with me for $2.50 a shot. 
I thought of my solitary $2.50 I had made, and concluded to accept 
the challenge. We accordingly made a mark on a tree, tossed up for 
first turn, which he won, and when he fired made a very bad shot. I 
won some five or six in succession, and when I had made enough to 
pay my way down, I thought it time to stop ; besides, I was afraid he 
might not pay me, so I suggested the advisability of our stopping, to 
which he agreed, saying I could beat him. He then asked me to 
oome with him to the little groggery he was staying at, and have 
a drink, I wondering if he would pay me. After the drink, he pulled 
out a long bag of gold dust, and told the man to weigh out for me 
$75 ; to take the price of the drinks and let him have a bottle of 
whiskey, the charge for which was $16. I got some crackers and 
sardines. This fortunate wind-fall enabled me to reach Fort Langley 
in a few days, when I returned to Victoria rather at a loss to know 
what to do next." 

INTRODUCED TO COL. MOODY. On reaching Victoria Mr. Moberly 
at once called on Governor Douglas, and in the ante-room of his office 


met Judge Begbie, who introduced him to a gentleman just recently 
arrived Col. R. C. Moody who, after a short conversation, invited 
Moberly to call on him at his quarters. After a lengthy interview 
with the governor, during which Mr. Moberly gave him particulars 
of the mining regions he had visited, he visited Col. Moody and 
received an appointment under him. After being a short time at 
Langley, he took an active part in surveying the new capital of 
British Columbia New Westminster, then Queensborough. Shortly 
after the sale of lots in New Westminster, Mr. Moberly, in company 
with Robert Burnaby, formerly private secretary to Col. Moody, went 
to Sqtiamish River at the junction of the Jeakness River with the 
Squamish, where there was then a settlement of about two thousand 
Indians. They expected to find gold and coal, but not having proper 
machinery for coal prospecting, gave up the search and returned to 
New Westminster. 

MADE EXTENSIVE SURVEYS. In 1860, he surveyed the south side of 
English Bay, Burrard Inlet, and both sides of Port Moody, and soon 
afterwards entered into a contract along with Mr. E. Dewdney as 
partner, to build a trail or road from Fort Hope on the Eraser to the 
Smilkameen river, east side of the Cascade range of mountains. 
This road was to connect with the latter river, where gold of a very 
fine quality had been discovered. Whilst on the survey of that road 
he relates that the landlord of a place a few miles from the camp 
invited him to make a visit. A short time before Moberly had made 
the landlord a present of a small quantity of rum. He complied with 
the invitation to make the visit and stayed over night. Asking for 
his bill next morning he found on the slate meals $2.50 each, 
drinks 50 cents each, fresh eggs $1 a piece, and 75 cents per pound 
for barley for his horse. Moberly paid the bill, jumped on his horse, 
vowing it would be some time before he accepted another such invita- 
tion or enjoyed the luxury of fresh eggs. 

PARTNER WITH MR. DEWDNEY. In reference to the contract 
entered into by Mr. Dewdney, a proclamation was issued by 
Governor Douglas, dated 20th August, 1860, which sets forth that an 
Indenture was made, dated 17th of the present month, "between 
Richard Clement Moody, Chief Commissioner of Lands and Works 
in British Columbia, and Edgar Dewdney of New Westminster, for 
the construction of a certain trail or road for 76 ($380) per mile, to 
be paid in such proportion as the Chief Commissioner shall deter- 
mine, of which $5,000 will be paid in cash, and the remainder by 


means of treasury bonds, bearing interest at the rate of six per cent, 
per annum; of which bonds $4,000 are to be redeemed 31st December, 
1860; $5,000 on 31st December, 1861, and the remainder 31st 
December, 1862, provided that one-fifth of the value of the works 
executed shall be retained until three months after the date of com- 
pletion and acceptance of the whole by the said chief commissioner 
or his agent." 

PROCLAMATION. "Now therefore, I, James Douglas, do hereby 
declare, proclaim and enact as follows: (1) On the production of 
any certificate of the said chief commissioner, stating his approval of 
any portion of the said works as determined by him, and the price of 
such proportion according to the said recited agreement, there may be 
delivered, from time to time, by the Treasurer of British Columbia, 
to the Chief Commissioner of Lands and Works for the time being, 
such a number of Treasury bonds, in the form set forth in the schedule 
hereunto, each bond being for the amount of 50, and bearing interest 
at the rate of 6 per cent, per annum, from the date thereof, as shall 
in the aggregate amount to four-fifths of the price of the whole pro- 
portion specified in such certificate. 

" (2) At the expiration of three calendar months from the comple- 
tion of the said works, certified and accepted as aforesaid, and on the 
production of a certificate of approval and acceptance thereof, signed' 
by the said commissioner, and stating the entire length of the whole of 
the said t>rail or road and works, and the entire price thereof may be 
delivered by the said treasurer to the said Edgar Dewdney, his executors, 
administrators or assigns ; such an additional number of the like 
bonds as shall with those already delivered under clause 1, make up 
the full price of 76 per mile, on the entire length so certified to be 
approved and certified. 

" (3) All the said bonds shall be numbered in a regular series, 
according to the natural numbers, beginning with No. 1, according to 
the order in which the same shall be issued. 

"(4) The bonds numbered one to sixteen, both inclusive, shall be 
payable by the treasurer, with interest, in cash, on 31st December, 
1860. The bonds numbered seventeen to thirty-six, both inclusive, 
shall be payable by the treasurer, with interest, in cash, on 31st 
December, 1861. The remainder of the said bonds shall be payable, 
in cash, on 31st December, 1862. All of the said bonds shall be dated 
as of the days on which they shall respectively be issued. 

" (5) The treasurer, for the time being, of the colony is hereby 
ordered and directed to pay the amount of every such bond, and 
interest, out of any moneys belonging to the colony, in his hands at 
the time when such bond shall be presented to him for payment, 
according to the tenor thereof. 

" (6) The schedule hereto shall be deemed to be part of the pro- 


" (7) This proclamation may be cited 'TheSmilkameen Road Bond 
Act, I860. 7 

"Issued, etc., at Victoria, Y.I., this 20th day of August, 1860, 
and Twenty-fourth year of her Majesty's reign. 


" SCHEDULE Treasury Bond Proclamation ...... _____ I860. 

" Smilkameen Road ...... No ...... 50 ____ day of .... 186 

"Payable 31st December, 186 . 

" The Government of British Columbia is hereby bound to pay the 
bearer hereof, on the 31st December, 186 , at Treasury of British 
Columbia, the sum of 50, together with interest thereon from the 
date hereof, after the rate of six per cent, per annum. 

................ Treasurer. 

" By order of his Excellency the Governor. 

" ................ Colonial Secretary." [L.S.] 

Douglas visited the gold mines in 1861, he went by way of Kamloops 
and Okanagan Lake to Rock Creek, returning by way of the trail 
under contract by Messrs. Dewdney and Moberly, which was then 
almost completed. It was arranged that the westerly portion of the 
road should be constructed by a detachment of the Royal Engineers 
under Captain Grant. The waggon road from Port Douglas to 
Lillooet had been constructed chiefly under the superintendence of 
Mr. J. W. Trutch. In 1862 it was arranged that the Government of 
British Columbia, with the Royal Engineers and a force of civilians 
should build that portion of the Cariboo road from Yale to the head 
of navigation on the Eraser, to Chapman's Bar; Mr. Trutch, the 
next section, by contract, to Boston Bar; Mr. Spence, from Boston 
Bar to Lytton ; and Mr. Moberly and two partners, from Lytton to 
Clinton, under a charter contract ; the payments to be partly in money 
and partly in tolls. After many mishaps, and changes, and delays, 
the great waggon road was eventually completed and placed in the 
hands of the Government, who levied a toll to repay the heavy outlay 




rial was presented to Governor Douglas by J. A. Homer and seven 
others, professedly delegates from Hope, Douglas and New West- 
minster, advocating that a representative Assembly should be granted 
to the colony of British Columbia. In a despatch dated April 22nd, 
a copy of the memorial referred to was forwarded to the Secretary of 
State. After four short introductory paragraphs, the governor states : 
"(5) The delegates sought an interview with him ; but he declined 
receiving them as the representatives of the inhabitants of British 
Columbia, but had no hesitation in meeting them with all courtesy 
as a delegation of her Majesty's subjects who had assembled at the 
places mentioned for the purpose of petitioning the Crown." (6) They 
did not favor him with their opinion upon public affairs, but the 
governor states : " Judging from their printed reflection upon the 
whole system of import and inland duties levied on goods in Britisty 
Columbia, which the memorial regards as oppressive to the people 
the one financial idea evolved is, that there should be a general 
reduction of taxation. They do not pretend to proportion expenses 
to income, but propose to carry on the public works requisite for the 
development of the country, by means of public loans : their object 
being to obtain present exemption from taxation, by throwing a part 
of the current expenditure upon the future inhabitants of the colony 
a measure which is not without a share of justice, and has, there- 
fore, many zealous advocates." (7) Having given those preliminary 
remarks, the governor proceeded to review the memorial, and following 
up the various subjects fully, said : 

THE GOVERNOR PROCEEDED TO REVIEW. " 8. The first prayer of 
the inhabitants is for a resident governor in British Columbia, entirely 
unconnected with Vancouver Island. Your Grace will, perhaps, 
pardon me from hazarding an opinion on a subject which so nearly 
concerns my own official position. I may, however, at least remark, 


that I have spared no exertion to promote the interests of both 
colonies, and am not conscious of having neglected any opportunity 
of adding to their prosperity. The memorial then proceeds to the 
subject of Representative Institutions, asking for a form of govern- 
ment similar to that existing in Australia and the eastern British 
North American Provinces. This application should, perhaps, be 
considered to apply more to the future well-being of the colony than 
to the views and wishes of the existing population. Without pre- 
tending to question the talent or experience of the petitioners, or 
their capacity for legislation and self-government, I am decidedly of 
opinion, that there is not as yet, a sufficient basis of population or 
property in the colony to institute a sound system of self-government. 
The British element is small> and there is absolutely neither a manu- 
facturing nor farmer class ; there are no landed proprietors, except 
holders of building lots in towns ; no producers, except miners, and 
the general population is essentially migratory the only fixed 
population, apart from New Westminster, being the traders settled 
in the several inland towns, from which the miners obtain their 
supplies. It would, I conceive, be unwise to commit the work of 
legislation to persons so situated, having nothing at stake, and no 
real vested interest in the colony. Such a course, it is hardly unfair 
to say, could be scarcely expected to promote either the happiness of 
the people or the prosperity of the colony ; and it would unques- 
tionably be setting up a power that might materially hinder and 
embarrass the Government in the great work of developing the 
resources of this country : a power not representing large bodies of 
landed proprietors, nor of responsible settlers having their homes, 
their property, their sympathies, their dearest interest irrevocably 
identified with the country ; but from the fact before stated, of there 
being no fixed population, except in the towns. Judging from the 
ordinary motives which influence men, it may be assumed that local 
interests would weigh more with a legislature so formed, than the 
advancement of the great and permanent interests of the country. 

" 9. I have reason to believe that the memorial does not express 
the sentiments of the great body of the people of British Columbia ; 
not that I would, for a moment, assume that Englishmen are, under 
any circumstances, unmindful of their political birthright, but I 
believe that the majority of the working and reflective classes would, 
for many reasons, infinitely prefer the government of the Queen, as 
now established, to the rule of a party, and would think it prudent 
to postpone the establishment of representative institutions until the 
permanent population of the country is greatly increased and capable 
of moral influence, by maintaining the peace of the country, and 
making representative institutions a blessing and a reality, and not 
a by-word or a curse. 

"10. The total population of British Columbia and from the 
colonies in North America, in the three towns supposed to be repre- 
sented by the memorialists, is as follows: New Westminster, 164 


male adults; Hope, 108 adults; Douglas, 33 adults: in all, 305; 
which, supposing all perfect in their views respecting representative 
institutions, is a mere fraction of the population. Neither the people 
of Yale, Lytton, or Cayoosh, Rock Creek, Alexandria, or Similkameen 
appear to have taken any interest in the proceeding or to have joined 
the movement. 

"11. From the satisfactory working of the New Westminster 
Council, established last summer, with large powers for municipal 
purposes, I entertained the idea of enlarging the sphere of their 
operations, and of constituting similar bodies at Hope, Yale, and 
Cayoosh, and all the other towns in British Columbia, with the view, 
should it meet with the approval of her Majesty's Government, of 
ultimately developing the whole system into a House of Assembly. 
Part of the system has already been commenced at Yale and Hope. 
The Government may, by that means, call into exercise the sagacity 
and knowledge of practical men, and acquire valuable information 
upon local matters, thus reaping one of the advantages of a legislative 
assembly without the risks and, I still think, the colony may, for 
some time to come, be sufficiently represented in that manner. 

"12. The existing causes of dissatisfaction, as alleged in the 
memorial, may be classified under the following heads : (1) That the 
Governor, Colonial Secretary and Attorney-General do not reside 
permanently in British Columbia. (2) That the taxes on goods are 
excessive as compared with the population, and in part levied on 
boatmen, who derive no benefit from them, and that there is no land 
tax. (3) That the progress of Victoria is stimulated at the expense 
of British Columbia, and that no encouragement is given to ship- 
building or to the foreign trade of the colony. (4) That money has 
been injudiciously squandered on public works and contracts given 
without any public notice, which subsequently have been sub-let to 
the contractors at a much lower rate. (5) That faulty administration 
has been made of public lands, and that lands have been declared 
public reserves, which have been afterwards claimed by parties con- 
nected with the Colonial Government. (6) The want of a registry 
office, for the record of transfers and mortgages. 

"13. The first complaint, that the Governor, etc., do not reside 
permanently in British Columbia, scarcely requires comment from me. 
Your Grace is aware that I have a divided duty to perform ; and 
that if under the present circumstances the Colonial Secretary and 
Attorney-General resided permanently in British Columbia, these 
offices would be little better than a sinecure, the public service 
would be retarded and a real and just complaint would exist. 
Although the treasury is now established at New Westminster, and 
the Treasurer resides permanently there, I have no hesitation in 
saying that it would be far more for the benefit of the public service 
if that department were still at Victoria. 

" 14. The complaint of over-taxation is not peculiar to British 
Columbia ; but whether it is well founded or not may be inferred 


from the example of other countries. Judging from that estimate, 
the people of British Columbia have certainly no reason to complain 
of their public burdens, for the United States tariff which is vigor- 
ously enforced in the neighboring parts of Washington Territory, 
averages 25 per cent, on all foreign goods spirits and other articles 
of luxury excepted, on which a much higher rate of duty is charged. 
.The citizen of Washington Territory has also to pay the assessed road 
and school taxes, levied by the Territorial Legislature. In contrast 
with these taxes, the import duty levied in British Columbia is only 
ten per cent., with a similar exception of spirits and a few. articles of 
luxury, which pay a higher duty ; while all other taxes levied in the 
colony are also proportionately low, compared with those of Washing- 
ton Territory. I might also further state that two-thirds of the 
taxes raised in British Columbia have been expended in making 
roads, and other useful public works, and have produced a reduction 
of not less than a hundred per cent, on the cost of transport, and 
nearly as great a saving in the cost of all the necessaries of life ; so 
that while the communications are being rapidly improved, the people 
are, at the same time, really reaping substantial benefits more than 
compensating the outlay. 

" 15. With respect to the complaint about the boatmen, they had 
no claim whatever to be exempted from the law imposing a duty 
indiscriminately on all goods passing upward from Yale ; neither did 
the duty bear at all upon them, as they were merely carriers and not 
owners of the goods. The real question at issue was, whether the 
inland duty should be charged on goods carried from Yale by water 
as well as by land, and was nothing more than a scheme concocted by 
the owners of the goods to benefit themselves at the expense of thB 
public revenue. 

"16. And here I would beg to correct an error in the memorial 
with respect to the population of British Columbia, which is therein 
given at 7,000, exclusive of Indians, making an annual average rate 
of taxation of 7 10s. per head. The actual population, Chinamen 
included, is about 10,000, besides an Indian population exceeding 
20,000, making a total of 30,000, which reduces the taxation to 2 
per head instead of the rate given in the memorial. It must be 
remembered that all the white population are adults, and tax-paying 
there being no proportionate number of women or children ; and 
it is a great mistake to suppose that the native Indians pay no taxes. 
They have, especially in the gold districts, for the most part, aban- 
doned their former pursuits, and no longer provide their own stores of 
food. All the money they make by their labor, either by hire or by 
gold-digging, is expended in the country ; so that the Indians have 
now become extensive consumers of foreign articles. Every attention 
has been given to render Fraser River safe and accessible; the channels 
have been carefully surveyed and marked with conspicuous buoys ; and 
foreign vessels may go direct to New Westminster, without calling at 
Victoria, and the port dues are the same whether the vessels clear 


originally from Victoria or come directly from foreign ports. It is 
impossible to imagine a more perfect equality of legislative protection 
than is given to these ports. . . . 

"19. t have had applications, under various pretexts, from almost 
every trading-place in the colony for remissions of duty, and I have 
steadily resisted all such applications on the ground that class legisla- 
tion is vicious and leads to injustice and discontent. It is, moreover, 
very doubtful if the proposed remission of duty on ship-building 
materials would advance that interest, as long as the timber business 
of New Westminster is a monopoly in the hands of a few persons 
who keep timber at an unreasonably high price. 

" 20. With respect to the fourth and fifth complaints, I am not 
cognizant of any circumstances affording grounds for them. I 
addressed a letter to the Chief Commissioner of Lands and Works, 
whose department they more immediately affected, and I forward 
herewith a copy of that officer's report, from which it will be seen that 
no just cause exists for the allegations made. 

" 21. The want of a registry office, which also forms a subject of 
complaint, arises solely from our not having succeeded in maturing 
the details of a measure, which is, I feel, replete with difficulties of no 
ordinary kind, but that measure, providing for the registration of real 
estate, will be passed as soon as practicable. 

"22. Before concluding this despatch, I shall submit a few observa- 
tions on the financial system of Vancouver Island in contrast with 
that of British Columbia, explanatory of their distinctive features 
and their applicability to the colonies respectively. 

" 23. The public revenue of Vancouver Island is almost wholly 
derived from taxes levied directly on persons and prof essions, on trades 
and real estate; on the other hand, it is by means of duties and 
imposts, and on goods carried inland, that the public revenue of 
British Columbia is chiefly raised. No other plan has been suggested 
by which a public revenue could be raised, that is so perfectly adapted 
to the circumstances of both colonies, or that could be substituted or 
applied interchangeably with advantage to the sister colony. The 
reasons may thus be stated : The low price and bulky productions of 
Vancouver Island will not bear the cost of exportation to any British 
possession, and are virtually excluded from the markets of the Mother 
Country by the distance and expense of the voyage. A precisely 
similar result is produced through the almost prohibitory duties levied 
in the neighboring ports of Oregon and California ; the former, 
moreover, abounding in all the products common to Vancouver 
Island, except coal ; and neither being inferior in point of soil, 
climate or any physical advantage. Thus practically debarred from 
commercial intercourse and denied a market for its produce, it became 
painfully evident that the colony could not prosper, nor ever be a 
desirable residence for white settlers, until a remunerative outlet was 
found for the produce of their labor. It. was that state of things 
that originated the idea of creating a home market, and the advan- 


tageous position of Victoria suggested free trade as the means, which 
was from thenceforth adopted as a policy with the object of making 
the port a centre of trade and population, and ultimately the com- 
mercial entrep6t of the North Pacitic. That policy was initiated 
several years previous to the discovery of gold in British Columbia, 
and has since been inflexibly maintained. Victoria has now grown into 
commercial importance, and its value and influence can hardly be 
overestimated. Financially, it furnishes four-fifths of the public 
revenue; it absorbs the whole surplus produce of the colony, and it 
is a centre from whence settlements are gradually brandling out into 
the interior of the island. Thus Victoria has become the centre of 
population, the seat of trade, a productive source of revenue, and a 
general market for the country. The settlements are ail compactly 
situated within a radius of twenty miles, except those which are 
-accessible by sea ; there is therefore no pressing call for large expen- 
diture in the improvement of internal communications. Roads are 
opened where required, with due regard and in proportion to the 
means of the colony ; its vital interests not being greatly aflected by 
any avoidable delay. 

" 24. The circumstances of British Columbia are materially different 
from those just described. That colony has large internal resources, 
which only require development to render it powerful and wealthy. 
Its extensive gold fields furnish a highly remunerative export, and 
are rapidly attracting trade and population. Mining has become a 
valuable branch of industry, and essentially the vital interest of the 
colony ; it has hitherto been my unceasing policy to encourage and 
develop that interest. The laws are framed in the most liberal spirit, 
studiously relieving miners from direct taxation, and vesting in the 
mining boards a general power to amend and adapt their provisions 
to the special circumstances of the districts. The Government has, 
moreover, charged itself with the more onerous duties in furtherance 
of the same object, by opening roads through the most difficult routes 
into all parts of the country, to facilitate transport and commerce, 
and to enable the miner to pursue his arduous labors with success. 
Three lines of roads have been successfully carried through the last 
range, and mining districts five hundred miles from the sea have been 
rendered accessible by routes hitherto unknown. The extension and 
improvement of works so pressingly required and indispensable to 
the improvement and development of the country, still claims the 
anxious care of the Government. The greatest difficulty was experi- 
enced in providing funds to meet the necessarily large expenditure on 
those works, and that object was accomplished by imposing an import 
duty on goods, as the only feasible means of producing a revenue 
adequate to the public exigencies. It was justly supposed that any 
tax directly levied on the mining population, would lead to clamor 
and discontent, without being productive of revenue ; whereas the 
indirect tax is not felt as a burden, and, I believe, makes no appreci- 
able difference in the prices which miners have to pay for their 


"25. I have entered into the foregoing review of the administrative 
systems adopted in British Columbia and Vancouver Island, in answer 
to the assertion of the memorialists, that every exertion is made to 
stimulate the progress of Vancouver Island, at the expense of British 
Columbia, and to prove that my measures have ever been calculated 
to promote, to the fullest extent, the substantial interests of both 

" 26. I trust your Grace will pardon the length to which this 
despatch has reached ; in forwarding the memorial, however, estab- 
lished rule required that I should accompany it with a report, and I 
could not well do so in fewer words. I have, etc. (Signed) JAMES 



THE EXPENDITURE FOR ROADS, streets and bridges in the colony of 
British Columbia, for the year 1862, amounted to a total of nearly 
92,000 sterling or $460,000. (1) THE YALE ROUTE : Yale to Sailor's 
Bar, 6,559 ; to Boston Bar, 4,200 ; to Chapman's Bar, 15,128 ; ta 
Lytton Road, 17,651 ; to Alexandria Road, 16,563. (2) DOUGLAS 
ROUTE : Harrison and Lillooet Road, 4,970 ; Second Portage Road, 
2,307 ; Seton and Lillooet, 219 ; Lillooet and Alexandria, 15,080, 
(3) NEW WESTMINSTER and Pitt Meadows Roads, 3,868. (4) New 
Westminster Streets, 302 ; (5) New Westminster to North Arm, 
720; (6) Saw Mill Road, 40; (7) Quesnelle, Cotton wood and 
Lightning Creek, 500 ; (8) Hope, Similkameen, Rock Creek and 
Kamloops Trails, 815 ; (9) Bentinck Arm Route, 344 ; (10) Bute 
Inlet Route, 2,012; (11) Sundry Trails, 674. Total, 91,952. 
The tolls collected at Yale in 1862 amounted to about $6,000 per 

THE VIEWS OF GOVERNOR DOUGLAS on representation, so fully 
expressed in the foregoing despatch, were continued during his term 
of office. In a despatch dated May 26th, 1863, his Grace the Duke 
of Newcastle reminded him that the Act for the government of 
British Columbia would expire that year ; that it was his intention- 
to propose to the Imperial Parliament a bill continuing the present 


Act for another year, and that an Order-in-Council would be submitted 
to her Majesty constituting a Legislative Council in British Columbia. 
The power of nominating this council would, in the first instance, 
be vested in the governor, and so exercised as to constitute a partially 
representative body, capable of making the wishes of the community 
felt, and calculated to pave the way for a more formal, if not a larger 
introduction of the representative element. 

. SEPARATE GOVERNORS PROPOSED. In another despatch dated June 
15th, 1863, his Grace said : " I have long had under my consideration 
the various questions which have arisen respecting the form of 
government which should be adopted in British Columbia and 
Vancouver Island ; and I have now to communicate to you the 
decision at which I have arrived. I should have much desired, if it 
had been possible, that these two colonies should have formed one 
Government. I feel confident that economy and efficiency would 
have been promoted, that commerce would be facilitated, that political 
capacity would be developed, that the strength of the colonies would 
be consolidated, and generally that their well-being would be greatly 
advanced by such a union ; arid I hope that the moderate and far- 
seeing men in both communities will be convinced of this, and will 
bear in mind the expediency of avoiding or removing all that is likely 
to impede, and favoring all that is likely to facilitate such a result. 
But I am aware that the prevailing feeling is, at present, strongly 
adverse to such a measure, and in deference to that feeling, I am 
prepared to take steps for placing them under different governors, so 
soon as proper financial arrangements are made for the permanent 
support of the Government. 

SALARIES OF OFFICERS. "With regard to Vancouver Island I think 
that a permanent Act of the Legislature should be passed, securing to 
the principal officers of the Government, salaries at the following 
rates, which the importance of the colony and the prospects of its 
revenue appear to render no more than fitting : Governor, 3,000 ; 
Chief Justice, 800 (to be 1,200 when a lawyer is appointed) ; 
Colonial Secretary, 600 ; Attorney-General, 300, with practice ; 
Treasurer, 600; Surveyor-General, 500. The initiation of all 
money votes should also be secured to the Government. When this 
is done, I am prepared to hold the Crown revenue of Vancouver 
Island at the disposal of the legislature of that colony, retaining only 
such temporary power over the land as will enable her Majesty's 
Government to close its transactions with the Hudson Bay Company. 


When this is effected, I shall be ready to transfer the management of 
the revenue to the Colonial Legislature. 

SALARIES IN BRITISH COLUMBIA. "With regard to British Colum- 
bia, adverting to the magnitude of the colonial interests, and to the 
steady progression of the local revenue, I should wish you at once to 
proclaim a permanent law, enabling her Majesty to allot salaries to 
the government officers of British Columbia, at the following rates : 
Governor, 3,000, with a suitable residence; Chief Justice, 1,200; 
Colonial Secretary, 800 ; Attorney-General, 500, with practice ; 
Treasurer, 750 ; Commissioner of Lands and Surveyor-General, 
800 ; Collector of Customs, 650 ; Chief Inspector of Police, 500 ; 
Registrar of Deeds, 500. 

"It will then follow, to give effect to the enclosed Order-in-Council, 
which her Majesty has been pleased to issue, in order to prepare the 
way for giving the inhabitants of the colony a due influence in its 
Government. I should have wished to establish there the same 
representative institutions which already exist in Vancouver Island ; 
and it is not without reluctance that I have come to the conclusion 
that this is at present impossible. 

A DIFFICULT PROBLEM. "It is, however, plain that the fixed 
population of British Columbia is not yet large enough to form a 
sufficient and sound basis of representation, while the migratory 
element far exceeds the fixed, and the Indian far outnumbers both 
together. Gold is the only produce of the colony, extracted in a great 
measure by an annual influx of foreigners. Of landed proprietors there 
are next to none, of tradesmen not very many, and these are occupied 
in their own pursuits, at a distance from the centre of Government, 
and from each other. Under these circumstances, I see no mode of 
establishing a purely representative legislature, which would not be 
open to one of two objections. Either it must place the Government 
of the colony under the exclusive control of a small circle of persons, 
naturally occupied with their own local, personal or class interests, or 
it must confide a large amount of political power to immigrant, or 
other transient foreigners, who have no permanent interest in the 
prosperity of the colony. 

GOVERNMENT PREPONDERANCE. "For these reasons I think it 
necessary that the Government should .retain, for the present, a 
preponderating influence in the Legislature. From the best information 
I can obtain, I am disposed to think it most advisable, that about 
one-third of the Council should consist of the Colonial Secretary and 


other officers, who generally compose the Executive Council ; about 
one- third of magistrates from different parts of the colony, and about 
one-third of persons elected by the residents of the different electoral 
districts. But here I am met by the difficulty that these residents 
are not only few and scattered, but (like the foreign gold-diggers) 
migratory and unsettled, and that any definition of electoral districts 
now made, might, in the lapse of a few months, become wholly 
inapplicable to the state of the colony. It would, therefore, be 
trifling to attempt such a definition, nor am I disposed to rely on any 
untried contrivances which might be suggested for supplying its place 
contrivances which depend for their success on a variety of circum- 
stances, which, with my present information, I cannot safely assume 
to exist. . . . 

CONVENE A NEW LEGISLATURE. "By what exact process this 
quasi-representation shall be accomplished, whether by ascertaining 
informally the sense of the residents in each locality, or by bringing 
the question before public meetings, or (as is done in Ceylon) by 
accepting the nominee of any corporate body or society, I leave you to 
determine. What I desire is this, that a system of virtual, though 
imperfect representation shall at once be introduced, which shall 
enable her Majesty's Government to ascertain, with some certainty, 
the character, wants and disposition of the community, with a view 
to the more formal and complete establishment of a representative 
system, as circumstances shall admit of it. ... With these 
explanations, I have to instruct you first to proclaim a law securing 
to her Majesty the right to allot the above salaries to the officials of 
British Columbia; and, having done so, to give publicity to the 
enclosed Order-in- Council, and to convene as soon as possible, the 
proposed legislature. (Signed) NEWCASTLE." 

The members of the Legislative Council of British Columbia, to be 
appointed from the colonial officials, were, ex-ojficio, the Colonial 
Secretary, the Attorney-General, the Treasurer, the Chief Commis- 
sioner of Lands and Works, and the Collector of Customs. 




IN SEPTEMBER, 1863, the commission of Governor Douglas for Van- 
couver Island colony lapsed through effluxion of time. His dual 
commision as governor of the colony of British Columbia terminated 
in 1864. The British Colonist (Victoria) newspaper of October 13th t 
1863, said: "Upon the arrival of the last mail steamer, we were 
much gratified at being enabled to publish the Gazette announcing 
that the honor of knighthood had been conferred upon the governor 
of these colonies, and we take the present opportunity of his Excel' 
lency's return to Victoria, to offer our most sincere and hearty 
congratulations to himself and his family. The distinction was so 
looked for by the public, that they would have been as apt to feel its 
omission as a slight upon this colony, as they are now disposed to 
take a small share of the compliment to themselves. 

REVIEW BY THE " BRITISH COLONIST." " We have conceived it 
our duty, upon some occasions, to differ from the policy pursued by 
Mr. Douglas, as governor of the colony, and we have, from time to 
time, had occasion, as public journalists, to oppose that policy ; we 
trust, however, that such opposition has at no time been factious- 
personal to the governor himself it has never been. If we have 
opposed the measures of the Government, we have never in our public 
acts of the executive head of that Government, failed in our esteem 
for the sterling honesty of purpose which has guided those acts, 
nor for the manly and noble qualities and virtues which adorn the 

A POPULAR GOVERNOR. "The intimate relations which have so 
long existed between Sir James Douglas and the people of Victoria, 
will shortly undergo a change, and we are quite sure that we echo the 
sentiments of the public of Victoria in saying that his Excellency 
will carry into private life the honest esteem and hearty good wishes 
of all Vancouver. His services to his country as governor of these 
colonies, will not be forgotten for many years to come ; and we 


believe that nothing will be remembered of his administration of the 
government that will tend to tarnish the name of DOUGLAS. Her 
Majesty in conferring the honor of knighthood upon our governor has 
paid him a well-deserved compliment, which the colony will thoroughly 

to remove to New Westminister, to complete his term of office in 
British Columbia; but before leaving Victoria, the citizens gave him 
a grand banquet on the occasion of his retiring from the government 
of the colony. It is described by the Victoria press as "a glorious 
and brilliant affair." The speeches were reported at considerable 
length. The chairman said in proposing the guest of the evening : 
" When he saw the governor of two incipient colonies composed of 
every nationality sometimes disappointed men when he saw that 
governor, without attempting to court popularity, treated to such an 
ovation as to-night, it told him that that governor must have been 
deserving of it. ... The rush of '58 took the colony by surprise. 
The governor had to do everything ; he had to organize, and reorganize, 
and create. There was one monument to his worth the noble roads 
which he had caused to be opened up in the sister colony. His 
administration had been one alive to the interests of all, and deaf to 
the clamor and vituperation of interested parties. . . . All 
party feeling was now buried, and the feeling now was one of general 

AN ADDRESS WAS PRESENTED to his Excellency by the Rev. Dr. 
Evans, Chairman of the Wesleyan Mission, which was replied to by 
Sir James, who concluded by saying "he felt that the community 
were disposed to place a higher value on his services than they 
deserved. (Loud cries of ' No, no.') Hs should always remember 
with the warmest gratitude the efforts of the inhabitants in assisting 
him to maintain good order in the colony. In closing his relations 
with this colony he would ever retain a grateful recollection of this 
day's proceedings, and of the high honor conferred upon him, and in 
whatever part of the world he should spend the remainder of his days, 
he would ever rejoice to hear of the welfare, and progress, and 
prosperity of this colony." (Tremendous cheering.) ^ 

panied by his staff, proceeded on foot next day to take the steamer to 
New Westminster, a large procession was formed. Every flag-staff in 
town displayed bunting. When the gangway of the steamer Enterprise, 


which was gaily decked with colors for the occasion, was reached, 
cheers which had greeted the governor along the route were renewed 
with great vigor. As the vessel moved from the wharf, a band 
stationed on board the Otter, struck up the tune of "Auld Lang 
Syne," and a salute of thirteen guns was fired by the employes of the 
Hudson Bay Company. 

THE NEW GOVERNOR, ARTHUR KENNEDY, appointed to succeed Sir 
James Douglas as Governor of Vancouver Island, did not arrive at 
Victoria until March, 1864. He was received 
with every manifestation of loyalty, enthu- 
siasm and respect. A writer (Elliott) says : 
" Kennedy was extremely courteous in man- 
ner, somewhat of a flatterer, and an excellent 
speaker; the people soon observed that 
these were about the best characteristics he 

from New Westminster, a banquet, attended 
by seventy-nine guests, was given in his honor. 


The report says " the whole affair was highly 

successful." Addresses were presented next day by the Legislative 
Council, the government officials, etc., etc., and a beautiful medallion 
likeness of Sir James was presented to Lady Douglas by the Hon. 
Messrs. Smith, Orr, Holbrook and Black. A deputation consisting 
of Hon. R. S. Smith, Hon. W. S. Black and Messrs. Edgar Dewdney, 
Walter Moberly, Charles T. Seymour, Thomas H. Cudlip, F. G. 
Richards and John J. Barnston, waited on his Excellency and pre- 
sented an address (read by Hon. Mr. Smith) signed by upwards of 
nine hundred residents of British Columbia, to be forwarded to the 
Duke of Newcastle. 

His EXCELLENCY IN REPLY, said: "GENTLEMEN, Envy and malevo- 
lence may be endured, but your kindness overwhelms me ; it deprives 
me of the power of utterance ; it excites emotions too powerful for 
control. I cannot, indeed, express at this moment in adequate terms, 
my sense of your kindness. This is surely the voice and the heart of 
British Columbia here are no specious phrases, no hollow or vernal 
compliments. This speaks out broadly, and honestly, and manfully. 
It assures me that my administration has been useful ; that I have 
done my duty faithfully ; that I have used the power of my sovereign 
for good and not for evil ; that I have wronged no man, oppressed 


no man ; but that I have, with upright rule, meted out equal-handed 
justice to all men, and that you are grateful. A pyramid of gold and 
gems would have been less acceptable to me than this simple record. 
I ask for no prouder monument, and for no other memorial, when I 
die and go hence, than the testimony here offered that I have done 
my duty : to use your own emphatic words ' faithfully' and 'nobly' 
done my duty. . . . Assure the people of British Columbia that 
they have my heartfelt thanks for this gratifying expression of 
their opinion ; assure them that I shall ever rejoice to hear of their 
prosperity, and of the progress of all that relates to the moral and 
material interests of this colony." 

ARRIVAL OF THE NEW GOVERNOR. Frederick Seymour, formerly 
Governor of British Honduras, who was to succeed Sir James Douglas 
in the colony of British Columbia, did not arrive until April, 1864. 

A CIVIL LIST. The proposal in the despatch of the Secretary of 
State to Sir James Douglas, 15th June, 1863, already referred to, is 
noticed in a despatch dated 30th April, 1864, from the Secretary of 
State, Card well, to Governor Kennedy. Mr. Card well states, "that 
he had received a despatch from Sir James Douglas, dated 12th February, 
1864, enclosing a resolution of the House of Assembly of Vancouver 
Island, in which the House declines to pass the Civil List Act pro- 
posed in the Duke of Newcastle's despatch of 15th June last." The 
Secretary adds, " that he can only authorize Governor Kennedy to 
issue warrants for the payment of the governor and colonial secre- 
tary, at the respective rates of 3,000 and .600 per annum, assigned 
to them by his predecessor." Mr. Cardwell further states : "It will 
of course rest with the Legislature to make provision for the remun- 
eration of the officers employed under the Government in any wa, 
and from any source which may seem most appropriate to them." 

UNION OF THE COLONIES. Mr. Cardwell also mentions that "besides 
the matter of salaries, Sir James Douglas's despatch raises a still 
larger and more important question, namely, the union of both 
colonies under one governor." On this subject, he states, he " is 
desirous of having the benefit of Governor Kennedy's views, as soon 
as he had acquired, on the spot, sufficient experience and knowledge 
to enable him to form an opinion, and to supply reliable information 
for the assistance and guidance of her Majesty's Government in con- 
sidering the question." The despatch concludes by stating that a copy 
of it would be sent to Governor Seymour, u to furnish his views on 


the same matter, and I need scarcely say that it will not only be 
unobjectionable, but highly desirable that you and he should consult 
freely on the subject, although it will be the most convenient course, 
that ultimately each should report to me independently the con- 
clusions which he may form on the subject." 

The question of the union of the colonies occupied the attention of 
the leading men both on the island and in the mainland, and was 
warmly discussed. Resolutions for and against were passed at public 
meetings, and in the Legislative Assembly at Victoria, as well as in 
the Executive Council at New Westminster. 

resolutions were submitted to the Assembly : "That the immediate 
union of this colony with British Columbia, under such constitution 
as her Majesty's Government may be pleased to grant, is the mea"ns 
best adapted to prevent permanent causes of depression, as well as 
to stimulate trade, foster industry, develop our resources, augment 
our population, and ensure our permanent prosperity ; and that this 
House pledges itself, in case her Majesty's Government shall grant 
such union, to ratify the same by legislative enactments if required; 
and that the resolution be submitted to his Excellency the governor, 
with the respectful request that he may take the same into his earnest 
and immediate consideration." 

RESOLUTIONS TRANSMITTED. His Excellency, Governor Kennedy, 
in a despatch dated March 21st, 1865, transmitted the resolutions, 
and explained to the colonial secretary in 
reference to them, that they had been passed 
by the Legislative Assembly of Vancouver 
Island after a warm debate, by a vote of 
eight to four, on the 27th January, 1865. 
They were introduced by Mr. Amor De Cos- 
mos, one of the members for Victoria. " It 
was thereupon alleged by the minority that 
the majority did not fairly represent public 
opinion, and to test this fact, Mr. De Cosmos, 

HON. AMOR DE COSMOS. who proposed, and Mr. C. B. Young, who 

opposed the resolution (being two members 

for the city of Victoria), agreed to resign their seats, and went before 
their constituents for re-election, which resulted in the return of Mr. 
De Cosmos and Mr. McClure, both advocates of union and a tariff, 
by a large majority." 


UNCONDITIONAL UNION. "The majority of the House of Assembly," 
the despatch continues, "in favor of unconditional union with British 
Columbia is now, I believe, 11 to 4 ; and I have no doubt that a 
-dissolution of the House would undoubtedly increase that majority by 
two more. 

"I submitted these resolutions to the Legislative Council for their 
information, and the majority present being ex-nfficio members, 
resolved that it was inexpedient for the Council to express any 
opinion on the subject. . . . 

"I am in a position to know that the majority, if not all of the 
ex-ojficio members, are in favor of union, with some small differences 
on matters of detail, and that they refrained from a public expression 
of their opinion from a desire to avoid possible complication, and with 
a view of giving their untrammelled support to such measures as her 
Majesty's Government may deem most titling on a future occasion. 

" The Local Legislature of Vancouver Island have thus, I think, 
adopted the only course by which the union of these colonies can be 
satisfactorily effected, namely, leaving conditions and details, even to 
the form of government, to your decision. 

" The form of government at present existing in this colony, 
namely, an elective assembly of fifteen members, and a nominated 
Legislative Council, does not, and in my opinion never can, work 
satisfactorily. There is no medium or connecting link between the 
governor and the Assembly, and the time of the Legislative Council 
(which comprises the principal executive officers) is mainly occupied 
in the correction of mistakes, or undoing the crude legislation of the 
Lower House, who have not, and cannot be expected to have, the 
practical experience or available time necessary for the successful 
conduct of public affairs. On financial subjects they are always 
greatly at fault. 

" I would therefore recommend (should the opportunity for 
remodelling the form of government occur) that there should be one 
chamber only, composed of elective members as at present, with the 
addition of nominees of the Crown in the proportion of one-third, 
with power to resolve itself into two separate chambers, when the 
state of the population would justify or render it necessary, a contin- 
gency which is, I think, far distant. I believe that this change 
would find favor with the intelligent portion of the public, and a 
large number, if not a majority, of the present Assembly, whose con- 
stitution it would affect. 

"I have abstained from expressing any public opinion, or exercis- 
ing any influence I may possess, in encouraging this movement, but I 
have no doubt that the expression of the former and legitimate use of 
the latter, if acquiesced in by Governor Seymour, would immediately 
remove all serious opposition to a union of these colonies, which I 
consider a matter of great imperial, as well as colonial interest." 




Mr. Card well, dated Rue de la Paris, February 17th, 1866, when His 
Excellency was on his marriage tour, says he has " endeavored to 
prove, first, that union with Vancouver Island, or the annexation of 
that colony is not desired in British Columbia ; and secondly, that 
the larger colony is not in a depressed condition." He explains by 
stating : 

"The discovery of gold on the Lower Fraser first attracted to 
British territory a large portion of the unattached population of 
Western America. The immigrants came from Oregon or California 
by sea. Their detention at the first place of landing created Victoria. 
The ' bars ' on the Fraser were gradually worked out. Now they 
are abandoned to the labors of Chinamen. But year by year the 
summer immigrants pushed further into the interior, still by the 
valley of the great river. Finally Cariboo was discovered, and its 
prodigious wealth attracted large numbers of miners, who were 
fed and supplied from Victoria. Driven from their work by the 
severe climate in the winter, the ' Caribooites ' spent some time 
and much money in that town and added to the profits of the mer- 
chants who had monopolized their market during the winter season. 
There were no large settlements in British Columbia ; it was only a 
colony in name. . . . 

"Cariboo was the great customer for Victoria ; but Cariboo, with all 
its prodigious wealth, has not been found to be ' poor man's diggings/ 
not competent therefore to support a very large population. The 
mines are of limited extent, the gold lies deep, and is expensive to 
extract. The number of spring immigrants began to fall off, and in 
1865 was smaller than usual. Victoria continued to do the principal 
business of the mines, but the population to feed was comparatively 
small, and Victoria suffered. So did British Columbia to a certain 
extent. Road-side houses on the Cariboo road line became bankrupt 
as traffic decreased by diminished immigration and diminished 
travelling. The general condition of the colony was, however, pros- 
perous. To the merchant of Victoria the depression he felt in 1865 
appeared to extend over British Columbia ; but he could only see the 


valley of the Fraser, while a vaster view lay open before the eyes of 
the Government of New Westminster. 

"Late in 1864 important discoveries had been made near the 
British Kootenay Pass of the Rocky Mountains in our territory. It 
was first through American newspapers that I became aware of a 
rich and prospering mining town existing within our limits, about five 
hundred miles due east of New Westminster. Although the Kootenay 
mines could, at first, be only approached by passing through United 
States territory, we soon extended British institutions over the new 
diggings, established courts of justice and collected taxes. On the 
disruption of the mining camps of the Boise country, Kootenay 
received a considerable accession of population, and in the season of 
1865, the new diggings were paying into the colonial treasury in 
taxes upwards of a thousand pounds per week. Here was a tangible 
benefit to British Columbia which brought no immediate advantages 
to Victoria ; on the contrary, the new mines which were fed from 
across the frontier, took away many persons from Victoria's best 
customer, Cariboo. The customs duties levied at Fort Shepherd on 
the Columbia belong to us British Columbians alone. I am credibly 
informed that these latest discovered gold mines have, in some places, 
yielded as much as eight hundred dollars a day to the hand, without 

" While British Columbia is reputed to be languishing, it may be 
interesting for me to mention, though I write without official docu- 
ments, some of the principal works which have been accomplished by 
us in 1865. Every surveyor and every engineer in the colony was in 
government employ last year. Every discharged sapper, possessing 
anything like adequate knowledge, was likewise induced to enter our 
service. A good trail for pack animals has been opened from the 
Fraser to the Kootenay. The Cascade range, the Gold range, the 
Selkirk range, have been successively surmounted, and with what 
labor may be imagined when I state that at the end of May the 
cutting over the Cascade Mountains had, on each side, seven feet of 
snow. This trail not only runs through British territory to a gold 
mine, but it affords, by the British Kootenay Pass, an easy access 
from the Pacific to the Hudson Bay Company's lands beyond the 
Rocky Mountains. Its principal value, however, to the colonists is 
that it already enables the merchants of New Westminster to under- 
sell those of Lewiston and Walla Walla at the new diggings. A 
sleigh road has been opened from the seat of government to Yale, 
running for upwards of one hundred miles through the dense forests of 
the Lower Fraser. A bridge has, for the first time, been thrown over 
Thompson's River, on the main road to the northern mines. 
Upwards of twenty thousand pounds have been expended on the 
completion of this high road into Cariboo, allowing machinery at last 
to be introduced into Williams Creek. A large sum was spent in con- 
necting by streets the three mining towns in that locality. A good 
road now connects New Westminster with the sea at Burrard's Inlet, 



and secures the inhabitants from inconvenience, should an unusually 
severe winter close the Fraser. A light-ship, public libraries, new 
school buildings, testify to the energy of the Government. If I add 
that in the year just past, steamers for the first time navigated the 
Upper Columbia, and that New Westminster has been in connection 
with the whole telegraphic system of the United States, Canada, New- 
foundland, and with Cariboo, I point out an amount of work accom- 
plished in a single summer, I should think entirely unprecedented in 
so young a colony. For the telegraphic communication and the new 
line of steamers, the Government can only claim the credit of the 
earnest efforts it has made to second the enterprise of republican 

In continuing the despatch, Governor Seymour explains that " Her 
Majesty has, by an Order-in-Council, created a body authorized to 
make laws for British Columbia. It consists of fifteen members, 
exclusive of the governor, with whom it is optional to take his seat as 
a member of the Board, or to keep aloof, and by so doing constitute 
himself an entirely separate branch of the Legislature. One-third of 
the council is composed of the Colonial Secretary, the Attorney- 
General, the Treasurer, the Surveyor-General and the Collector of 
Customs, who are, by a separate instrument, constituted likewise the 
Governor's Executive Council. The remaining two-thirds are selected 
by the governor, but I believe that a despatch from the Duke of 
Newcastle directs that five of the ten shall be chosen from the 
magistracy of the colony, and that in the appointment of the other 
five the governor shall endeavor to be guided by the wishes of the 
people, as signified in five distinct districts. Under this constitution 
the Government can command a majority of votes, but the power has 
rarely been exercised by me, save in cases where demands were made 
upon the colony by the imperial treasury, which the Legislature, if not 
coerced, would have rejected. 

"The mode of ascertaining the popular choice is as follows: A letter 
is written by command of the governor to the paid magistrate of the 
district, directing him to call a meeting of the inhabitants to select a 
person for a seat in the council. Due notice of the meeting is given 
in the Gazette, and locally by the magistrate. Seats in the Legislative 
Council are eagerly contended for. Electioneering addresses issue 
from the rival candidates, and sometimes very considerable expense is 
incurred. Great discretion is left with the magistrates and people of 
the district, as to th votes which shall be accepted and reported to 
the governor. . . . The election over, the magistrate reports to 
the governor the number of votes each candidate has received. It is 
by no means incumbent on the governor to appoint to the council 
the elect of the people, but it would require very special circumstances, 
such as have not yet presented themselves, to justify his rejection of 
the man placed at the head of the poll. The councillor must take the 
oath of allegiance before he takes his seat. Thus a purely British 
legislature is secured. ... If the union of colonies should take 


place, I would suggest that about twelve members of the new 
legislature should be elected by the people. Two important changes 
would result in Vancouver Island. Its present legislative constitution 
would be abolished. The partial exemption from duties would cease. 
The loss of the House of Assembly would not, I think, be much 
regretted. The freedom of the port of Victoria has already been 
much impaired, duties being now levied on many articles of consump- 
tion. The people of Victoria having the issue fairly placed before 
them at the last elections, have, by a large majority, determined that 
the system shall cease, and a tariff take its place." 

says : "In the event of union taking place, a question which will 
locally excite some interest is as to the seat of government. Victoria 
is the largest town of the two colonies, and is, in many respects, the 
most agreeable place of residence. I think, however, that in seeking 
union with British Columbia, Vancouver Island relinquishes all claims 
to the possession within her limits of the seat of government. New 
Westminster has been chosen as the capital of British Columbia, and 
it would not be fair to the reluctant colony to deprive her of the 
governor and staff of officers. Both of these towns are inconveniently 
situated on an angle of the vast British territory ; but New 
Westminster, on the mainland, has the advantage over the island 
town, it is already the centre of the telegraphic system, and is in 
constant communication with the upper country, whereas the steamers 
to Victoria only run twice a week. The seat of government should 
be on the mainland; whether it might not with advantage, be 
brought, hereafter, nearer to the gold mines, is a question for the 

ARTHUR N. BIRCH, Colonial Secretary, administered the Govern- 
ment of British Columbia in 1866, during the absence of Governor 
Seymour, who was visiting Great Britain and the continent of Europe, 
at that time ; he also then entered wedlock, and returned with Mrs. 
Seymour to New Westminster. 

MR. BIRCH (3rd March, 1866) transmitted to Mr. Cardwell, a 
petition signed by merchants, miners and others resident in British 
Columbia. The signatures numbered 445. The object of presenting 
the petition, Mr. Birch says in the despatch enclosing it, is to show 
their desire for the union of the colony with Vancouver Island. The 
petitioners say they "are fully convinced of the necessity of legislative 
union between British Columbia and Vancouver Island, on fair and 
equitable terms. That the accomplishment of this event, as soon