No. 18
Downing Street
7 March 1869
I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your Despatch No. 126 of the 30th November enclosing Copies of a correspondence which has passed between you and Mr. Duncan in reference to some Murders which had been committed in the vicinity of Metlakahtla.
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Your Despatch seems to me to be far from satisfactory. In the first place I do not understand the statement in your Minute of the 14th November that the matter "was entirely taken out of your hands," as Admiral Hastings seems to have offered to assist your Government in discovering the murderers, and as the Magistrates in the vicinity of that Station must be under your orders.
But even if it were taken out of your hands it was not your duty to acquiesce in such a proceeding, but to resumeyourManuscript image your proper relation in regard to the Administration of the Country, and to set right what had gone wrong.
I need hardly express my dissent from the doctrine expressed (or alleged to have been expressed) by Mr. Blenkinsop, that the Missionaries should be desired to confine themselves to their legitimate business and to leave Indians to settle amongst themselves what he calls their own drunken quarrels. I wish that the Despatch contained more evidence that you discountenanced it.
I much regret thatitManuscript image it is my duty to observe that the inaction of your Government in the present instance contrasts strongly with the stirring and expensive operations which were set on foot and which terminated in the destruction or dispersion of an Indian Tribe when an outrage was committed, certainly not with less provocation, on European Subjects of Her Majesty in 1864. I need hardly remind you that Indians who have forsaken their savage mode of life and placed themselves under what they suppose to be the protection of British Law are as much entitled toreplyManuscript image rely on the Government for redress of injuries which they may have received, as any British settler.
I have the honor to be
Your most obedient
humble Servant