Higgins to Secretary of State
Aden Terrace
Stoke newington Green N
7th Sepr 1864 To His Excellency The Secretary for the Colonies

By a private letter I have just received from a gentleman at Brockville Canada West, who is aware of my having a Son in Van Couver Island British Columbia, I am furnished with the following extract from a Toronto newspaper,
By the arrival of HM Surveying Ship Beaver we have a full account of the melancholy but not unexpected murder of Alex McDonald & several of his party, while on their way through from Benti[n]ck Arm to Fort Alexandria on the Fraser river, on the 17th May last.
My son's name Clifford Higgins is among the number murdered.
I beg your Excellency may inform me with any particulars you may have relating to this sad massacre, whether the body was recovered & any information that will allow me to believe the above mentioned Clifford Higgins was my son.
I am your Excellency's
Very Humble Servant
John Higgins
Minutes by CO staff
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Mr Elliot
We have no infn abt Clifford Higgins. In a local newspaper (in 6010) the following is said. "Abt 15 miles above the point where Brewster's party were working Alex Mcdonald, with 7 or 8 men, was engaged in cutting the trail from Benshee Lake, to meet Brewster's gang, & it is feared that this party too, have fallen victims."
Clifford Higgins is stated by the Father to have been one of Macdonald's gang, & to have been murdered.
We have no Authority for this statement, though it may nevertheless be true.
ABd 7 Sepr
I think that theManuscript image best answer will be under the circumstances, that Mr Cardwell has received no official information on the subject. Draft.
TFE 8 Sep
Other documents included in the file
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Elliot to Higgins, 13 September 1864, advising that no official word had been received concerning the fate of his son.