No. 112
25th September 1865
Sir,
I have had the honor to receive your despatch No. 39 of the 8th July last, forwarding copies of a correspondence with the Lords Commissoners of Her Majesty's Treasury on thesubjectManuscript image subject of the proposed increase to the Staff of the Assay Department.
2. I may at once state that no alteration has yet been made in the personnel of the Establishment. The work still continues to be performed by one Chief Assayer and one Melter, the Staff authorized in the Duke of Newcastle's despatch, No. 41 of 31st July 1863. I beg, however, to enclose a Return of the Amount of Gold assayed during the eight months ending 1st September 1864,andManuscript image and for a like period of 1865. This Return will show the correctness of Governor Seymour's statement that the business of the Department would probably be greatly extended during the present year.
3. In obedience to the instructions conveyed in your despatch, I shall be careful not to incur the additional expenditure proposed by Governor Seymour and voted in the Estimates for 1865, but should the amount ofgoldManuscript image gold brought to the Government Assay Office increase in the present ratio, I shall be compelled to give some temporary assistance without delay.
4. Your despatch does not convey any instructions in reference to Governor Seymour's proposal that the Assay Department be distinct and not as heretofore under the nominal superintendence of the Treasurer. I would beg strongly to recommend that I may be authorized to carry outGovernorManuscript image Governor Seymour's suggestion. Mr Claudet has now been virtually superintendent of the Department for over five years and has gained the entire confidence of the mining community. The alteration will entail no additional charge on the Revenue and I am convinced that the Department will work more satisfactorily when under the sole superintendence of the Chief Assayer.
I have the honor to be,
Sir, Sir,
Your most obedient
humble Servant
Arthur N. Birch
Minutes by CO staff
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Mr Elliot
I suppose this Desp: should be sent to the Treasury, but with any expression of opinion as to placing the Assay Dept: under the entire control of the Superintendent?
VJ 4 Jan
Mr Jadis
Prepare a draft sending to Treasury, & say that the Acting Gov's recommendation that &ca appears to Mr Cardwell deserving of consideration.
TFE 15/1
Documents enclosed with the main document (not transcribed)
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Return showing the amount of gold assayed during the eight months ended 31 August 1864, and the amount assayed during the same period in 1865, signed by F.G. Claudet, September 1865.
Other documents included in the file
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Elliot to G.A. Hamilton, Treasury, 17 January 1866, forwarding copy of the despatch and advising that the question appeared worthy of consideration.
Birch, Arthur Nonus to Cardwell, Edward 25 September 1865, CO 60:22, no. 91, 380. 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/B65112.html.

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