No. 134
26 July 1862
In my confidential dispatch of the 1st of this month I informed you that in the opinion of Her Majestys Government the moment had not arrived for considering the establishment of a separate government in the British Territories North of British Columbia, but that I should address you again respecting the mode of providing for the temporary administration of justice in those Territories.
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I enclose an Order in Council which has been passed for that purpose, with copies of the Acts of Parliament on which, as you will see by the recitals, that Order in Council is founded.
The order provides that the Territories in which you anticipate the discovery of gold in large quantities shall constitute the "Stikin" or "Stickeen Territories", that the government of these Territories shall be administered by the Governor for the time being of British Columbia with power to appoint and suspend judges and justices of the Peace, to pardon offenders and to exercise other functions of government,especiallyManuscript image especially that of making regulations for the disposal of land and occupation of the gold fields, in respect of which he will be able to levy a revenue by way of fees.
The Supreme Court of British Columbia will take cognizance of all suits, actions and prosecutions in respect of matters arising within the Stikin territories; trying all such cases by the Law of England so far as the Law is applicable to the circumstances of the country. Cases of Minor importance, however, may be tried by Justices of the Peace, whose proceedings are to be regulated by general rules laid down by the Supreme Court of British Columbia.
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I anticipate that these powers, the extent of which you will learn more precisely from an examination of the Order in Council, will enable you to deal satisfactorily with any amount of population by which these territories at present are likely to be occupied. If this should not be the case, you will of course report to me any difficulties in which you may find yourself involved and I shall be glad to receive, with your report, such suggestions as may occur to you respecting the most effectual mode of dealing with those difficulties.
I have the honor to be
Sir
Your obedient Servant
Newcastle
Documents enclosed with the main document (not transcribed)
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1Copy of an act "to enable Her Majesty to provide for the Government of Her Settlements […]," 19 July 1862, signed by Arthur Helps.
Footnotes
  1. The enclosure to which Newcastle refers does not appear in the RG7 G8C/10 collection; however, we presume it is this document, which does appear as a letterbook copy in the CO 398/2 collection.
People in this document

Douglas, James

Helps, Arthur

Pelham-Clinton, Henry Pelham Fiennes

Places in this document

British Columbia

Stikine Territory

Pelham-Clinton, Henry Pelham Fiennes to Douglas, James 26 July 1862, NAC RG7:G8C/10, 195. The Colonial Despatches of Vancouver Island and British Columbia 1846-1871, Edition 2.2, ed. James Hendrickson and the Colonial Despatches project. Victoria, B.C.: University of Victoria. https://bcgenesis.uvic.ca/B627134.html.

Last modified: 2020-12-02 13:40:34 -0800 (Wed, 02 Dec 2020) (SVN revision: 5008)