2 June 1859
I duly received your Confidential Despatch of the 24th March last, upon the subject of the appointment of Mr James Cooper as Harbour Master at Esquimalt for British Columbia, and acquainting me that you consider the faith of the Government is pledged to the appointment of Cooper to an office of the value promised.
I feel sure that you cannot have anticipated that any action of mine would designedly compromise the faith of Her Majesty's Government, or that I should willingly hesitate in carrying out any instructions they might see fit to issue to me. Mr Cooper was, in accordance with your intention and direction, appointed Harbour Master at Esquimalt upon his arrival here. He has since resided at that place and has been in the receipt of the Salary attached to the office.
I cannot however conceal from you the fact that there is nothing what ever in connection with British Columbia for Mr Cooper to do at Esquimalt, and it is difficult, if not impracticable to connect his services with any office in British Columbia for which he is fitted, unless he occasionally resides in that Colony. I have proposed such a course to Mr Cooper, but he declined to accept any appointment which would require him to leave Esquimalt. He therefore now remains in that place in the position of Harbour Master receiving a Salary of Four Hundred pounds per annum out of the Revenue of British Columbia.
I have etc.
James Douglas