Hammond to Merivale (Permanent Under-Secretary)
March 3, 1856
Sir,
With reference to your Letter of the 30th of August last relative to the proposed extension to Vancouvers' Island of the terms of the Reciprocity Treaty of June 1854, I am directed by the Earl of Clarendon to transmit to you a Copy of a Dispatch and of its Enclosure from Her Majesty's MinisterManuscript imageMinister at Washington on the same subject, and I am to request that, in laying these Papers before Mr Secretary Labouchere, you will state that Lord Clarendon would wish to be informed what answer should be returned to Mr Crampton, respecting the Counter propisitions which Mr Crampton states will probably be made by the United States' Government, namely, that in return for their acceding to the request of Her Majesty's Government in regard to Vancouver's Island, the other possessions of the Two Countries on the Pacific Coast shouldManuscript imageshould also be included in the Provisions of the Reciprocity Treaty.
I am Sir,
Your most obedient humble Servant,
E. Hammond

Minutes by CO staff
Manuscript image
Mr Merivale
The documents appended (registered 6353/54, 10700/54, 11321/54, 5019/55, 5433/55, 7866/55) will, I think, be sufficient for yr purpose on this subject.
Might not this oppy be taken to include the Falklands in any new Reciprocity Treaty. The place is constantly poached upon by American Fishermen—whom to punish is always a source of annoyance to the two Govts—and, though it has nothing to reciprocate, it might possibly derive advantage from the Accession of Shipping though only of the fishing sort. I admit that it is rather travelling out of the geographical limits contemplated in the New Treaty to include the Falklands; but it might be convenient to concede the fishing there as a make-weight against some American claim, and not without advantage to the Settlement itself, whilst we should be getting rid of a right which it is difficult for us to prevent being trespassed upon.
ABd 6/3
This country has no possessions on the Pacific except the coast
from opposite Vancr Id Northward to what are called the Russian dominions in America. I never heard that the fisheries were [pursued?] to any account, except to a small extent in the immediate vicinity of Vanc. Id. I am unaware of any objection to this concession, but it might be worth while to ask the H.B.Co. what they think of it?
HM Mh 8
I concur.
JB 10 M
Consult the H.B. Compy.
HL 10
Documents enclosed with the main document (transcribed)
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Draft, Ball to John Shepherd, Hudson's Bay Company, 15 March 1856, forwarding the enclosures and asking if there were any objections to the expected American counter proposal.
15th March 1856
Sir,
I am directed by Mr Secretary Labouchere to request that you will lay before the Directors of the Hudson's Bay Company the enclosed letter addressed to this Department by order of the Earl of Clarendon, transmitting copy of a Despatch from Her Majesty's Minister at Washington relative to the extension of the Reciprocity Treaty with the United States to Vancouver's Island: the provisions of which are embodied in the Act of Parliament 18th Vict: C. 3.
I am to request that the Directors will inform Mr Labouchere whether they see any objection to the acceptance by Her Majesty's Government of the Counter propositions which in the opinion of Mr Crampton may probably be put forward by the American Government.
I have etc:
J.B.
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2. J.F. Crampton to Clarendon, No. 38, 18 February 1856, stating the Americans would likely counter any British proposals to extend the Reciprocity Treaty.
Washington
Feb: 18, 1856
My Lord,
I did not fail, in obedience to the instructions contained in Y. Ldp's Despatch 189 of Sep: last, to bring under the attention of the U. State's Govt the desire of H.M. Govt that the terms of the Reciprocity Treaty of June 1854 shd now be applied to Vancouver's Island, in addition to the other British North American Colonies therein.
Mr Marcy, when I first alluded to this subject, remarked that before he could form any opinion in regard to the Expediency of such a measure it wd be necessary for him to consult some of the Representatives in Congress of the States and Territories who might be supposed to be more particularly interested in the matter.
Congress having since been assembled and at length organised, I took an opportunity to bring the subject again under Mr Marcy's attention, and to explain to him the mutual advantages which might be expected from a reciprocal trade between Vancouver's Island and the neighbouring parts of the U. States: and I also stated to him that the objection, which had been raised on the part of H.M. Govt in 1854 to the cession of the right of fishing on the shores of the British Territories on the Pacific had, as far as the shores of Vancouver's Island were concerned, been removed.
Y. Ldp will probably recollect that at an early stage in the negotiation of the Reciprocity Treaty Mr Marcy himself proposed to me that the engagements of the Treaty, more especially as regarded the fisheries, shd be extended to the British Possessions and the U.S. Territories on the Pacific Coast of this Continent: but that this was objected to by H.M. Govt on the ground that the British Possessions on that Coast having been granted by Charter to the Hudsons' Bay Company together with all Royalties and Rights thereunto appertaining, it was out of the power of H.M. Govt to cede any such Rights by Treaty.
A mere mistake, see minutes on 5433.
Shd the U. States' Govt now think it expedient to enter upon negotiations for embracing Vancouver's Island in the provisions of the Treaty, I think it probable that they wd propose to include likewise therein the other possessions of the two Countries on the Pacific Coast; and they will not, I apprehend, fail to ask for a concession of the right of fishing on the Coasts of the mainland of the British Possessions, and on those of Queen Charlotte's Island, as well as on those of Vancouver's Islands; it might therefore perhaps be well that I shd be in possession of the views of H.M. Govt in regard to this matter before such negotiation shd be commenced.
I have in the meantime addressed a note to Mr Marcy of which I have the honor to enclose a Copy, embodying the proposal of H.M. Govt in regard to Vancouver's Island, with a view to its being brought under the consideration of the U. States' Govt.
Documents enclosed with the main document (not transcribed)
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Crampton to W.L. Marcy, 15 February 1856, asking whether the American government would be prepared to consider extending the terms of the reciprocity treaty to include Vancouver Island.
Hammond, Edmund to Merivale, Herman 3 March 1856, CO 305:7, no. 2015, 170. 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/V565FO02.html.

Last modified: 2020-12-02 13:40:34 -0800 (Wed, 02 Dec 2020) (SVN revision: 5008)