Romaine to Merivale (Permanent Under-Secretary)
10 March 1860
With reference to your letters of the 11th August and 22nd October last respecting a promise of extra Pay and allowances alleged to have been made to the Detachment of Royal Marines sent from China to Vancouver's Island, I am commanded by My Lords Commissioners of the Admiralty to transmit herewith for the information of the Duke of Newcastle, a copy of a letter dated the 3rd January last from Colonel Holloway Manuscript image Holloway, late Commanding the Brigade of Royal Marines in China and I am to acquaint you that My Lords have stated to Captain Magin—in charge of the Detachment, that they disapprove of his line of conduct with regard to the extra Pay & Allowances, as it does not appear that there were sufficient grounds for his assuming that either he or his Detachment were to receive them. My Lords have also informed Colonel Holloway that Manuscript image that he was injudicious in making any remarks upon the subject to the Detachment—much inconvenience having arisen in consequence.
I am etc.
W.G. Romaine
Minutes by CO staff
Manuscript image
Mr Merivale
The Governor's Despatch on this subject (7339) remains unanswered for the reasons stated on the draft answer. The question will sooner or later arise by whom is the expense of the extra pay to the Marines to be defrayed—by this Dt or by the Admiralty?
VJ 12 Mar
Mr Fortescue
I have much difficulty in seeing my way to the end of this question. It seems clear that we must either confirm or quash the exaggerated hope entertained by these men, & shew the Governor that no such authority for those expectations as he supposes was ever given. But we are no more prepared than we were in Sept last, to direct the discontinuance of the service of these Marines.
HM Mh 12
Duke of Newcastle
I suppose the extrapay will have to be given to the Marines. From the expense of living in V.Id and B. Columbia, it wd. probably be necessary—irrespective of the promises made to them.
CF 14
The promise was irregular & improper but the Men ought not now to have faith with them broken & besides the extra pay must be requisite under the circumstances. I fear the Colony will have to pay.
N 27
Manuscript image
The force of Supernumerary Marines landed from the Tribune is 6 Officers and 133 Men. Their extra pay has been computed by Mr Irving to amount of £19 a day, or nearly £7,000 per annum. This is far more than the Colony can afford to pay, or than we can well ask Parliament to continue to vote. For the present of course the Marines must have the extra pay promised to them, for which purpose we have the Duke's authority already, but my object in this memo is to submit that we should at the same time renew the orders for the removal of these Soldiers. British Columbia is already burthened heavily enough with the Sappers and Miners who were rather hastily sent out from England, unasked, and who would appear from the Governor's accounts of them to be of no great service to the Colony. They Manuscript image They cause an item of about £11,000 per annum on the Parliamentary Estimate for British Columbia.
Last year we advised the War Office on the 9th of July (and repeated the advice to the Admiralty on the 11th of August) to bring these Supernumerary Marines home. The Admiralty, I have ascertained, did send out such orders in July, but (probably owing to the San Juan "difficulty") they have not yet been executed. Circumstances however have greatly changed. The affair has for the present been compromised with the Americans; a small joint force occupies the Island; a large British Naval Manuscript image Naval force is on the spot, and Vancouver Island will continue, as is generally understood, our principal Naval rendezvous in the Pacific.
The Governor, it is worth remarking, did not know what to do with these Marines when they arrived, and was obliged to send them to British Columbia to get them out of the way.
Such being the case, I would strongly recommend that this extra force of Marines, in so anomolous a position, be at once recalled. They will have the benefit of their extra Colonial Pay to the day of their departure and will have made a profitable transaction, even though Manuscript image the unauthorized promise of grants of land cannot be executed.
TFE 7 April
Documents enclosed with the main document (not transcribed)
Manuscript image
Colonel T.W. Holloway, Commander 1st Brigade and Senior Marine Officer in China, to Secretary of the Admiralty, no date, advising that no promise of extra pay was made by him, although he may have concurred in the general belief that it would be granted.