Taylor to Newcastle
6 Queen Street Place
16 May 1853
My Lord Duke,
In reference to the application of Messrs Gray & Easterby for a grant of Mining ground in Queen Charlotte's Island, Your Grace will perhaps permit me to state that it has not originated with a view to speculating on the Stock Exchange, but to prosecute a more thorough investigation of the Mines and an effectual working of them should they be found equal to the expectations formed.
I would beg to state that altho' the mere Mining operations would not be very costly, yet that from the length of the voyage in transporting the quartz as at present proposed to England, occupying as it would nearly twelve months outandManuscript image and home, and the number of vessels which must be chartered if not purchased, a large amount of floating Capital must necessarily be provided, probably amounting to 40,000 or 50,000; a capital such as may exceed what a few individuals would feel inclined to risk. Therefore should Her Majesty's Government be pleased to make a grant upon such terms as are suggested in my letter to Your Grace of the 7 ulto, Mr Easterby and the gentlemen who would associate themselves with him, would immediately cause some further preliminary exploration to be made under the direction of an experienced Miner; and should his report prove favorable, would at onceproceedManuscript image proceed to raise the necessary Captial for working the Mines on an effectual scale.
Having been informed by Mr Easterby that Your Grace requires the names of some responsible persons resident in England as grantees, I beg to observe that although as I stated in my first application, I only acted professionally and had no intention of becoming otherwise interested in the matter; my abstaining from taking any share in it does not arise from any doubt of the bona fides of the undertaking, or of the respectability of the parties on whose behalf I have applied; and that I do not doubt that Mr Easterby will be able to propose to Your Grace the names of such persons asmayManuscript image may be safely accepted by Your Grace as Lessees.
I have the honor to be My Lord Duke,
Your Graces most obedt Servant
Richard Taylor

To His Grace the Duke of Newcastle
&c &c &c
Minutes by CO staff
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This letter seems to me as not a sufficiently definite answer to
the question proposed in the Duke of Newcastle's minute of the 30th ultimo, which I put to Messrs Esterby [Easterby] & Gray personally when they called at this Office on the 5 instant. I collect from it that the capital will be raised by an Association of persons, but not a Company, & that the scheme is not intended as a Stock jobbing affair, but will be respectably conducted. Then whyManuscript image should not the names of the Supporters of the undertaking be disclosed? The difficulty probably consists in finding persons to join in a scheme when it has not been ascertained what the Government will grant. I should suggest as the best way of coming to an understanding on the subject that the papers should be referred to the Land Board, that that Department should be directed to prepare a draft Lease on the terms of Sir Henry De la Beckes Letter, with any improvements therein which the Duke of Newcastle may think proper to suggest, that the draftManuscript image should be submitted to Mr Taylor, as the Agent or Professional Advisor of Messrs Esterby, with an enquiry whether his clients will agree to its' provisions if the Treasury assent to them—and if they do agree, then refer the Draft Lease and all the papers to the Treasury. But still the names of the Supporters of the undertaking, & their Means—as far as such a point can be ascertained—should be made known to the Govt for the reason expressed in the Duke of Newcastle's minute.
ABd 17 May
It appears to me quite essential that the Secretary of State should
have some evidenceManuscript image that the persons proposing to engage in the undertaking have sufficient means to carry it into effect successfully. The Board of Trade are more often called upon than we are to deal with projected companies and I believe that it will be found on inquiry that such a preliminary as above stated is always insisted on by them before any privileges are conceded. It occurs to me, therefore, that it would be premature to give the Commrs the trouble of preparing a Lease and the Treasury of considering it until Mr Esterby is ready openly to state who and what are the Gentlemen who are to be his associates.
Probably some useful suggestions on the practical mode of bringing this to a point might be obtained by personal inquiry, as to the course usually followed in such cases at the Board of Trade.
TFE 17 May
Mr Taylor states that Mr Easterby will he has no
doubt propose the names of persons who may be safely accepted as Lessees. He mt be informed in answer to this letter that upon the Names referred to being submitted to HG the propriety of granting a lease would be taken into Consn.
FP 17
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A communication should be made to Mr Taylor as proposed by Mr
In the mean time it is desirable to ascertain the opinion of Mr Booth as to what is found at the B of T the safest course to be pursued in such a case as this. This need not be done in writing.
N 19
Other documents included in the file
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Draft, Colonial Office to Taylor, 28 May 1853, stating that "an essential preliminary" to further consideration of the matter would be submitting the names of persons who were prepared to join the undertaking.