Elmsley to Under-Secretary of State
8 Old Buildings
Lincolns Inn
July 21 1860
I have received the enclosed Memorial from my Nephew the Revd David Pringle from Vancouver Island & agreeably to his request I forward it to the Secretary of State for the Colonies. The letter addressed to H. Merivale was I have reason to believe addressed to him as the Under Secretary of the Colonial Office & I have thought it right to forward it to you with the Memorial & a letter Manuscript image directed to the Duke of Newcastle. I should be obliged to you if the receipt of these papers were acknowledged.
I remain
Your obedient Servant
W. Elmsley

To the Under-Secretary of the Colonies
Minutes by CO staff
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Sir F. Rogers
Acke: receipt, and state that as soon as the Governors report upon the duplicate Memorial, (which is alleged to have been sent to him,) has been received the representation from the Inhabitants of B.C. will be taken Manuscript image into consideration.
Mr Pringle says a duplicate of the Memorial has been sent to the Govr.
This is a very important move—nor by me at all unexpected. The Memorial is most temperately expressed and in my opinion perfectly reasonable in its demands. B. Columbia never will make those advances towards the prosperity its position & productions entitle it to expect until it is separated from Van C. Island.
ABd 24 July
Ackne in the terms suggested by Mr Blackwood.
FR 25/7
Yes. This is an important matter.
CF 26
Documents enclosed with the main document (not transcribed)
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A.D. Pringle to Merivale, 5 May 1860, explaining that he had been asked to forward the enclosed memorial to the Colonial Office.
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Memorial, British Subjects in British Columbia to Newcastle, no date, detailing various grievances with their administration and expressing a desire for a representative government separate from that of Vancouver Island (extensively minuted by Colonial Office staff).
Minutes by CO staff
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Original 7299/1860 B. Columbiarecd at the Col: Office 21 July/60. Governor's report 7727/60.
Documents enclosed with the main document (not transcribed)
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Note in file: "Folios 327 recto—329, being too large, will be photographed later."
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List of signatures, numbering approximately 420.
Documents enclosed with the main document (transcribed)
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1. Pringle to Merivale
May 5 1860
I have been requested to arrange the presentation of the accompanying Memorial to the Duke of Newcastle through some gentleman in London. I avail myself of your friendship with my uncle Mr Elmsley to Manuscript image ask you to do us this favor. The duplicate has gone to the Duke through the Governor of Vancouver Island.
It is a matter of great regret that the Memorial was not laid before the Miners of B. Columbia at an earlier stage than it was. I speak Manuscript image in good knowledge and authority when I say that 200 additional names might have been recorded.
I have the honor to be Sir,
Yrs faithfully
A.D. Pringle

.in +3 0
H. Merrivale Esqre
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1.1 Homer to Newcastle

To His Grace the Duke of New Castle, Her Majestys Principal Secretary of State for the Colonies &c &c &c &c May 22nd 1860
May it please your Grace
I have the honour to acquaint your Grace that a numerously attended and influential Meeting of the Inhabitants of New Westminster British Columbia British Subjects and others resident in British Columbia was convened at that City Monday March 5th 1860, to consider the propriety of Memorializing her Majestys Secretary of State for the Colonies on the political questions agitating the Colony of British Columbia and what remedy could be suggested to remove their grievances and hasten the progress and prosperity of the Colony. Previous to commencing the proceedings of the above meeting it was unanimously resolved that the representations proposed should be made by British Subjects only. I must State to your Grace that this decision was unanimous on the part of British and non British Subjects of her Majesty and it was considered requisite, in consequence of some of the residents of Victoria Vancouver Island promulgating the opinion being frequently [expressed] that British Subjects of her Majesty are not unfavourable to the present form of Government and Legislation as carried on in British Columbia [and] Manuscript image unfavourable Views and remonstrances proceed from the American portion of the population alone.
I have to State to your Grace that the following resolutions were unanimously passed with the exception of three dissentients. In the opinion of this meeting an absolute form of Government is not suited to this Colony, but a Representative Government is most consistent with the Views and wishes of the People of British Columbia to ensure the progress and develope its resources.
The time has now arrived for the People of British Columbia to address Her Majestys Secretary of State for the Colonies on the political grievances under which they are suffering to request His Grace to lay such representations before Her Majesty and to solicit Her Majesty to grant the People of British Columbia a Representative Government.
3rd This Meeting desires to express in the Strongest terms its disapprobation at the neglect of the interests of British Columbia and the insult offered to the whole Colony by the absenteeism and non Residence of His Excellency Governor Douglas, Mr Cary Attorney General of British Columbia Member of the Legislative Assembly Fort Victoria Vancouver Island, Mr Young Acting Colonial Secretary for British Columbia and Vancouver Island, Capt Gosset R.E. Treasurer & Postmaster General for British Columbia, Manuscript image Mr Cooper Harbour Master for British Columbia the name of Judge Begbie was omitted [from] the resolution being inapplicable to him that Gentleman having resided for three weeks at one time in New Westminster.
The System of Taxation at present in force in British Columbia is arbitrarily promulgated unsoundly levied and unequally divided. A Committe[e] be now appointed to draw up a Memorial to Her Majestys Principal Secretary of State for the Colonies to be refered to the consideration of this meeting which do now adjourn and assemble tomorrow March 6th at 7 oClock pm.
I beg further to inform your Grace that in accordance with the last Resolution Named the Memorial which I have the honour to append was approved of by all whose signatures it bears.
I have the honour to be
Your Graces Obedient Servant
J.A.R. Homer, Chairman
P.S. It has now been three months and upwards Since the above mentioned Meeting took place in New Westminster during which time the petition has been in circulation through the Coloney [sic] and has had three hundred and forty additional names appended thereto. And I am assured by Doctor Chisholm (one of the Committe[e] who had the Memorial in charge that during the time he found but two Manuscript image British Subjects who opposed it. J.A.R.H.
.in -3 0
Other documents included in the file
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Draft, Fortescue to Elmsley, 2 August 1860, acknowledging receipt of Pringle's letter and memorial.
Minutes by CO staff
Is this a counterpart of the Petition to the House of Commons which seems to have been presented on the 25 July?