Hamilton to Merivale (Permanent Under-Secretary)
Treasury Chambers
10 May 1859
With reference to Mr Elliot's Letter of the 25th Ult., enclosing copies of a Correspondence between the Colonial Office and the War Department, upon the subject of the mode of replacing the stores lost in the "Briseis," which were intended for the use of the Royal Engineer Force in British Columbia, I am directed by the Lords Commissoners of Her Majesty's Treasury to request that you will state to Sir E. Bulwer Lytton that My Lords regret the expense and loss which has been incurred with respect to the stores for British Columbia, but They do not consider thatManuscript imagethat there are sufficient grounds for requiring the War Department to defray this Expense, neither could the amount be recovered from the Funds of the Colony.
It appears to My Lords that the only course will be to provide for the cost of the stores lost, in the vote to be submitted to Parliament, for British Columbia, adding to the Estimate an explanation of the cause of this charge upon Imperial Funds.
I am etc.
Geo. A. Hamilton
Minutes by CO staff
Manuscript image
Lord Carnarvon
Now Instruct the War Office to replace, with as much despatch as possible, the lost stores, including those mentioned as "public" in the list accompanying 4081. Request the War Office to understand, with reference to the remark in Sir B. Hawes' Lr of the 11 Apl that Manuscript imagethis Office was not "fully aware" that it was not the practice for the War Office to insure Military Stores sent to the B. Colonies, until after the loss of the Briseis had called attention to the point—add that Sir E. Lytton begs that every precaution may be taken on this occasion for the safe arrival of the stores now ordered, & state that Sir Edd will further be glad to be informed when they are despatched from this Country. Mention to the War Office that the expense of replacing the Stores will be borne on the B. Columbia Estimate.
2. Inform the Governor that measures are being taken for replacing the stores—with the exception of the Houses—the Oats—& the hay.
ABd 11 May
I think that we have nothing more to do than to request the War Office toManuscript imageto furnish the required stores and to ask to be informed when they are despatched from this Country.
The question who should pay for them is one on which it is fit to acquiesce silently in the arbitration of the Treasury, and it would be highly unbecoming and inconvenient that the Department of one Secretary of State should address the Department of another Secretary of State in terms of a rebuke or of peremptory instruction as if they were conveying orders to an inferior authority.
TFE 12 May
Yes—but I think that the W.O. sd be requested to insure this fresh supply of stores.
C May 13
Other documents included in the file
Manuscript image
Draft, Colonial Office to Under-Secretary, War Office, 20 May 1859, advising that Treasury had agreed to replace the stores lost in the Briseis and suggesting that they be insured.