Moody to Carnarvon (Parliamentary Under-Secretary)
Topographical Office, War Dept
4 New Street, Spring Gardens
15 Sept. 1858
My Lord,
I have the honour to report that the expense of fitting the 2nd Vessel engaged by the Admiralty in order to adapt it to carry a portion of the Detachment of R. Engineers to British Columbia would be inordinately expensive, as the vessel from its construction is not in any way at present arranged suitably for the purpose.
I do not therefore recommend it with the exception of 2 men to take charge of the Stores but propose to go on with such a division of the Stores that if the Vessels sail at the same time we may escape any serious difficulty beyond "loss of time" in case [an] accident should happen to the second vessel. I shall endeavor to get off the 2nd Vessel (the "Briseis") which has been chartered before the 1st (the Thames City) and immediately on my arrival will get forward some "shelter" prepared toManuscript image receive the party so as to obviate any inconvenience that might arise from the arrival of the vessels at different times.
In short I trust by contrivance and additional energy from all hands to provide against the objectionable but as it stands unavoidable division of the men from a portion of the Stores.
I have the honor to be
Yr Lordship's
Most obedient humble Servant
R.C. Moody
Col. R.E.

The Earl Carnarvon
&c &c &c
Minutes by CO staff
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Lord Carnarvon
I cannot but fear that Colonel Moody is a little too hasty in his recommendations to us, & that we, in our desire to promote the prompt despatch of these Engineers & stores, listen to him too readily. If we were likely to have much more correspondence with Col: Moody I should be disposed to advise increased caution with him.
In consequence of his recent pressing request we haveManuscript image requested the War Office, who will in turn request the Admiralty, to find us a Naval Surgeon to accompany the R. Engineers in the second vessel—this modern "Briseis." As it turns out, on further enquiry, that the "Briseis" cannot except at a great expence take the Soldiers we must now withdraw our solicitation to the War Office, the Surgeon not being wanted.
ABd 16 Sepr
1. Annex draft to W.O. enclosing this letter and in consequence explaining that a naval surgeon will not now be required.
2. Annex draft to Col. Moody referring him, on the question of fitting up the Briseis for the conveyance of men, to my letter of yesterday the 15th and stating that as Sir E. Lytton is desirous to avoid all unnecessary expense and as Col. Moody does not appear from this communication to attach great importance to a division of the men, Sir E. Lytton must only again impress the importance ofManuscript image selecting with great care those stores & articles wh are to be shipped on board the Thames City with a special reference to the probable immediate wants of the detachment on their landing in B. Columbia.
C S 16
Other documents included in the file
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Draft, Colonial Office to War Office, 16 September 1858, forwarding copy of the letter and advising that the surgeon was no longer needed.
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Draft, Colonial Office to Moody, 16 September 1858, stressing the importance of achieving a proper division of the stores.