No. 69
22nd April 1867
My Lord,
I have the honor to enclose reports which may not be uninteresting to Your Lordship respecting the probability of a war taking place this summer betweentheManuscript image the Indians inhabiting the Country beyond the Rocky Mountains and those of our Western plains. The place where the War Council is taking place is in the United States territory about four miles south of the boundary line, and the scene of operations, if war takes place, will probably be in our neighbour's territory. I am not interfering in any way, as it is fear alone which has kept the Blackfoot IndiansfromManuscript image from making an attack on the Kootenay Miners. Last Summer considerable anxiety was felt on the subject on Wild Horse Creek.
I have the honor to be,
My Lord,
Your most obedient,
humble Servant
Frederick Seymour
Minutes by CO staff
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CC 17 June
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This appears to be merely matter of information. Put by?
TFE 18 June
CBA 18/6
B&C 19/6
Documents enclosed with the main document (not transcribed)
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P. O'Reilly, Magistrate, Columbia District, to Colonial Secretary, 7 February 1867, stating an imminent Indian war appeared unlikely.
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Extract, J.B. Gaggin, Magistrate, Kooteney District, 2 January 1867, expressing the same view as noted above.
Documents enclosed with the main document (transcribed)
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The Magistrate of Columbia District to the Colonial Secretary

7th February 1867

Copy


Sir,
In reply to your queries regarding the Kootenay Flathead, Spokane and Blackfeet Indians. I have the honor to inform you that the territory of the latter tribe lies on the eastern slopes of the Rocky Mountains, South of theManuscript imagethe Boundary, and extends as far as the Red River Settlement.
The Flathead, and Spokane Indians also inhabit American territory West of the Rocky Mountains, and though the Kootenay's reside in British Columbia during the greater portion of the year, they generally winter on the Tobacco plains, which are situated a few miles south of the line.
The three last named tribes have been on friendly terms for many years, and commonly unite to repel the incursionsManuscript imageincursions and depredations of the Blackfeet, who are warlike and famous for their horse thieving propensities.
The Indian mode of Warfare generally consists in making raids upon each others property, for which purpose they cross the mountains, and drive off bands of horses and there is not unfrequently much blood shed on these expeditions, the men are shot down and scalped, and the women and Children become the slaves of the Victors. InstancesManuscript imageInstances have occurred of Packers having lost their entire trains, when they unfortunately happened to encounter a party of these Marauders, who do not hesitate to appropriate any property that comes in their way.
I am unable to name even approximately the number of combatants likely to be engaged should a general war take place among these tribes, possible some thousands. I am of opinion however that no such warManuscript imagewar is imminent, it has been talked of for the past two years, but there has not resulted anything more serious than a few of the depredatory excursions above referred to.
The Indians of these tribes never travel except on horseback, and consequently they only make their raids in the summer season, when the passess of the mountains are free from snow.


I have &c
Signed) P. O’Reilly.
Seymour, Frederick to Carnarvon, Earl 22 April 1867, CO 60:28, no. 5799, 102. 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/B67069.html.

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