No. 3
New Westminster
2th February 1868
My Lord Duke,
With reference to the many despatches mentioned in the margin
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Governor to Secy of State
No. 3 of 26 Apl 1864
60, " 8 Oct "
23 " 11 Mar 1865
88 " 28 June "
124 " 27 Nov "
19 " 11 Jany 1867
128 " 25 Sept "
respectfully, yet vainly, protesting against the charge made upon the Colony by the Imperial TreasuryforManuscript image for payment of certain expenses incurred by the detachment of Royal Engineers while stationed here, I now venture to forward a memorandum on the subject prepared by the Acting Colonial Secretary. Mr Young, having served under Sir James Douglas during the whole time that the Engineers were in the Colony has been able to furnish a more detailed account of the several items of the Account than I had hitherto been abletoManuscript image to procure. I think he has made it out that the sum of £10,704.16.7 was charged against the Colony in error.
2. I would add a few remarks to Mr Young's. In the first place. "No. 1. Temporary Barracks at Esquimalt for Marines." Esquimalt was not, at the time when the expenditure was made, even within the limits of British Columbia, nor was it so for many years after. "No. 2. Temporary BarracksatManuscript image at Langley for the Royal Engineers." Utterly useless to the Colony and have long since disappeared. "No. 3. Clearing Site for Camp New Westminster." Colonel Moody selected a heavily timbered piece of land a mile from the town for his Camp. He employed civil labour to clear it. The expenditure has been utterly thrown away, as far as the Colony is concerned. New Westminster would be inaManuscript image a much more prosperous condition were not the small resources of the citizens spread over two several town sites a mile apart.
As regards No. 4, 5, 6, and 9, Mr Young very justly observes that the Colony would not have been called upon to provide accommodation for its Civil Servants. The only building that has turned out to be of advantage to the Colony is the house Colonel Moody built for himself, but then it isinconvenientManuscript image inconvenient for people in town to have to walk a mile whenever they wish to see me. Had this House not existed it is probable that I should have built a larger and more commodious one in the City of New Westminster out of the £10,000 placed at my disposal for the purpose and thus it is probable that the great expenditure incurred in Victoria in building a Government House would not have arisen. I thinkhoweverManuscript image however that I made a very fair proposal in my despatch No. 60 of 8th Oct. 1864, when I suggested that the outlay incurred on the present Government House should be received by the Imperial Treasury in full satisfaction of all claims on the Colony.
"No. 7. Houses for Military Stores" are useless. I shall repair them. They may fall to the ground.
"No. 8. Survey Office." This is ofsomeManuscript image some use to the Colony, but is, like all the other Camp buildings, at an inconvenient distance from the town.
"No. 10. Military trail from Camp to Burrard Inlet." This is now impassable and a new road has been opened to the Inlet at an expense of £3,600.
"No. 11. Lieutenant Palmer's exploration from Hope to Colville for Military purposes." It will be seen from the correspondence I enclose that Sir James DouglasdisapprovedManuscript image disapproved of this work being undertaken.
3. I must venture to repeat that the Imperial Treasury has been far from indulgent to the Colony in this matter.
I have the honor to be,
My Lord Duke,
Your most obedient
humble Servant
Frederick Seymour
Minutes by CO staff
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Sir F. Rogers
This £10704.16.7. was paid over by the Crown Agents to the Treasury in 1865, & was taken into consideration when the settlement of Accounts took place between the Imperial & local Treasuries. I do not suppose the Treasury would reopen this question whether or no the ColonyManuscript image was properly charged with the payment of these Items.
I think however a copy might be sent to the Ty for consideration with reference to previous correspondence—see Ty/11978 & answer.
CC 3/4
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The Colony was told it must pay for the Engineers. But the Treasury was asked to pay some 22,000£ half alleged to be for pay &c—half for "Public Works." The Treasury denied all responsibility but consented to pay for the pay—refusing to pay anything for the "Public Works"—wh the D of N (not understanding their nature) did not ask the Treasy to pay for. The Colony now have urged & do urge that what were called public works are in fact Barracks & other matter for the comfort of the Engineers & theirManuscript image officer—that the Engineers were sent out, not at their request, by the Home Govt and were of little or no use.
All this however the Treasury has been told already witht effect—& I do not know that there is much use in repeating it.
But I suppose the papers shd , as Mr Cox proposes, be sent on.
FR 6/4
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Duke of Buckingham
Instead of consulting the Treasury again I should inform the Govr that the Account is based altogether on untenable grounds. The Engineers were sent "not at their request" perhaps, but solely for their benefit.
The Barracks at Esquimalt were built before it was within the Colony—but for the local interests now Colonial.
The cost of clearing site N. Westminster, if thrown away, cannot be charged on taxpayers at home. He argues that all mistakes made by Govt in other parts of the Empire are to be charged on the [histopolitical?] scape goat. He takes the heart of Empire as tributary to all its extremities with no circulation back.
Only what "turns out well" is to be paid for by the locality where any expenditure is made.
CBA 8/4
I am very much inclined to agree with Mr Forster's minute on 1474—& this question to be considered now with the General question of B. Col. finance.
B&C 10/4
Documents enclosed with the main document (not transcribed)
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Memorandum, W.A.G. Young, Acting Colonial Secretary, 22 November 1867, containing details relating to expenditures discussed in the despatch.
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Colonel R.C. Moody to Douglas, 22 December 1859, forwarding Lieutenant Palmer's report on the exploration of a route from Hope to Fort Colvile.
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Douglas to Moody, 29 December 1859, disapproving the unauthorized engagement of Palmer.
Other documents included in the file
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Rogers to G.A. Hamilton, Treasury, 17 July 1868, forwarding copy of the despatch with reference to previous correspondence.
Minutes by CO staff
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This was to wait the decision on the general question of Finances—I
submit this by way of disposing of the Govrs despatch.
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I have nothing to add to my minute on 3372.
Other documents included in the file
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Rogers to Secretary to the Treasury, 25 March 1869, inviting comments respecting his letter of 17 July 1868.