No. 4
25 January 1860
With reference to my Despatch No 63 of the 17th of December last, Communicating for Your Grace's information, that by a recent Proclamation, the House of Assembly had been dissolved, and that Writs for another election would
issue
issue without delay; I have now further to inform Your Grace with reference to the Same Subject, that the intention expressed in that Despatch was duly carried into effect; the Writs for the new election having issued forth on the 30th of December.  
2. The Elections have Since taken place, and returns been received from all the Districts Except that of Nanaimo, shewing the election of the following Members for the House of Assembly.
Victoria Town Geo. H. Cary Esqre, Attorney General
Selim Franklin, Esquire
Victoria District Wm F. Tolmie, Esquire
H.P.P. Crease, Esquire
Alfred Waddington, Esquire
Esquimalt
Esquimalt Town Geo. T. Gordon, Esquire
Esquimalt District Jno Helmcken Esquire
James Cooper, Esquire, Harbor Master
Sooke District W.J. Macdonald, Esquire
Salt Spring Island District J.J. Southgate, Esquire
Lake District George Foster, Esquire
Saanich District John Coles, Esquire
Nanaimo District no return received  
3. There was a close canvas and a keen contest in nearly every District represented, and it is gratifying to observe that the returns exhibit the names of so many of the most intelligent and respectable gentlemen in the Colony.  
4. The House will meet
on
on the 21st day of February next, and it is my intention to bring forward at an early period of the session, the question of providing for the Civil List of the Colony; and also to ascertain the sense of the House with respect to the disposal and application of the proceeds arising from the Sale of Crown Lands, which it may be advisable to transfer to the Colony, provided the Legislature undertakes to defray all the expenses of Government.  
5. All such questions will, however, be
reserved
reserved and Submitted for the decision of Her Majesty's Government, which may be assisted by knowing the wishes and intentions of the Colonial Legislature.  
I have etc.
Minutes by CO staff
Mr Merivale
See 2761.  
VJ
13 Mar
I see among the list of members elected the name of James Cooper "Harbour Master." This I think was the gentleman whom Sir EB Lytton appointed to a higher office, and then found that he had left the island in a quarrel with the HB Co & owing them money. With this of course we have nothing to do. But if I am not wrong, he was ultimately appointed harbour master in British Columbia, not in the island, and is one of the officers paid by the British Treasury on whom Govr Douglas was directed to [inculeah?] the duty of residence. I do not like to detain this despatch, which (with 2761) relates to matters of more importance, but it may be as well to see to this point afterwards.  
HM
Mh 14
CF
15
Unless I am very much mistaken the Member for Esquimalt Town is a Gentleman who left this Country about three years ago under very disreputable circumstances.  
N
28
Mr Elliot
It may perhaps not be thought expedient to take any active measures on the subject at present, but it devolves on me to call attention to the fact that Mr Cary, the Attorney General for B. Columbia, has as well as Mr Cooper, been elected a Member of the Ho: of Assembly of VanCouver Island. The Sessions of the V.C.I. Legislature will doubtless be short, & no great deal of business transacted in them. It is likewise advantageous to have an English Gentleman and a Lawyer in the Lower, or the Upper House there. But those duties are not consistent with his Office of Attorney Genl of B. Columbia to which Colony all the Officials, Mr Cary included, have been ordered to betake themselves—nor can he very well escape going there since the Judge was on the point (Governor's desph 26 Jany/60) of taking up his residence in the Colony. We have also to recollect that this Country is paying for the services of an Att Genl for B. Columbia, whilst there can be very little doubt that he is doing the work of a Crown Law Officer in V. Couver Island at our expense, when those services shd be paid for by the Legislature of this Latter place. It seems to me that properly neither Mr Cary, nor Mr Cooper, ought to hold seats in the Assembly of V.C. Island, & that they shd be required to remove to B. Columbia, but I also think that they are probably rendering more service to the public in a general way where they are, & that it would on the whole be better to take no notice of the fact of their elections until some cogent reason, or emergency exists for depriving them of their Seats, & enforcing residence in the Colony to which they are accredited.  
See 12495/59 and 2831/60.  
ABd
19 April
The despatch is only sent for informtion & a further report is to follow.  
Put by?  
TFE
19 April
Duke of Newcastle
As far as Mr Coopers character is concerned, we cannot wonder at its being considered good enough for the Assembly, if it is good enough for a public functionary of the Crown. As to the non-residence in B. Columbia of B.C. officials, you appear to have thought that the Governor's respresentatives (in 2831) justified the toleration of it for the present and undoubtedly, in the cases dwelt upon by the Govr, their separation from him, there being no Lt Govr of B.C., would be very inconvenient. At all events, as long as this non-residence is tolerated, the election of two of the B. Columbian officials to seats on the Assembly can make little or no difference.  
CF
20
It is not desirable to notice the circumstances at present.  
N
22
 
Footnotes
  1. It is unclear, here, whether Douglas refers to South or North Saanich districts, or if he has conflated them into one district in this context. See this map, from 1860, which shows the separate Saanich districts.
Despatch to London:
Douglas to Newcastle, 25 January 1860, National Archives of the UK, 2760, CO 305/14. The Colonial Despatches of Vancouver Island and British Columbia 1846-1871. Ed. James Hendrickson and the Colonial Despatches project. Victoria: University of Victoria. http://bcgenesis.uvic.ca/getDoc.htm?id=V60004.scx. Accessed 21 November 2017. 

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