No. 44
19th March 1869
My Lord,
I have the honor to forward an Authenticated and two plain Copies of a Bill passed during the recent Session of theLegislatureManuscript image Legislature of this Colony, entitled; An Ordinance to Incorporate the Members of the Congregation of St Andrew's Presbyterian Church, in the City of Victoria, British Columbia.
2. The objections raised by the Attorney General appear to me so formidable that I refer the matter for Your Lordship's instructions.
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I have the honor to be,
My Lord,
Your Lordship's most obedient
humble Servant
Frederick Seymour
Minutes by CO staff
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CC 18 May
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Sir F. Rogers
Without assenting to all the criticisms of the Attorney General upon the Ordinance I should be disposed to instruct the Governor not to assent to it.
It appears to me that the real objects of the Congregation can be effected by a Trust Deed, when taken in connexion with the Religious Institution Ordinance 1859 (Sent on herewith 5582), and that it is not desirable to incorporate by Legislation these different religious societies.
In 1868 we disallowed a B. Col. Ordinance to incorporate the Society of the Sisters of St Ann (9935/68 sent on herewith).
HTH 21.5.69
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My own inclination runs rather against the Atty Gen. & Mr Holland. They ask why should you incorporate—I ask why should you not. In this country there wasManuscript image for a long time a kind of idea that corporate privileges were dangerous—the result of wh was the maintenance for years & years of a law of partnership highly advantageous to conveyancers and Chancery lawyers but simply disgraceful to a community of reasonable beings.
We have got rid of that, & now all persons who wish to carry on commercial operations in partnership can obtain witht difficulty the facilities wh attach to a corporate character. Of course facilities for profitable action always involve some facilities for mischievous or improper action. But I cannot myself doubt that as a whole in an intelligent country, obstacles to organized commercial actionareManuscript image are wrong, and in such a matter the sense of the country will discover and obviate the risk & utilize the good if left to itself.
I myself wd carry this on to charitable—religious—& educational matters. If an object is a proper object, or not an improper object to be effected by the Agency of Trustees, it is a proper or not an improper object to be effected by the means of a corporation—and if the object is not improper I think those who pursue it are likely to be the best judges of what the mode of proceeding (by trust deed or act of incorporation) will be most convenient to themselves.
In principle therefore I shd be for authorising the Govr to assentManuscript image to the Bill.
But no doubt some of the language may be loose—& the [sominith?] once in may be difficult to eject.
I should be disposed first to send the whole to the Col. Committee of the Ch of Scotland for obsns.
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Let us first do this. Then I can hear counsel FR and H.
G 25/5
Then I shd be disposed to tell the Govr that it seemed that difft decisions had been arrived at in this Office abt such incorpns that L.G. was disposed to remain in the earlier (Emmanuel) rather than the later (St Ann's) decision (herein I differ from Mr H.) and then to suggest such amendments of detail as appeared to be requisite—observing however that these were suggested for the sake of the congregation & that in suggesting them Ld G. must not be supposed to make himself responsible for the proper working of what is in effect a private Orde.
Documents enclosed with the main document (not transcribed)
Three printed copies of ordinance not on microfilm.
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H.P.P. Crease, Attorney General, to Seymour, 19 March 1869, reporting on the ordinance as per despatch.
Other documents included in the file
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Rogers to Secretary to the Colonial Committee of the Church of Scotland, 31 May 1869, forwarding copy of the despatch and soliciting their observations.
Minutes by CO staff
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Mr Holland
Should the Atty Genls report be sent—if not omit the Govrs desp as well & send merely the Ordinance?
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I think the AG's report might be sent.