Shepherd to Labouchere
Hudson's Bay House
September 16th 1856
I have the honour to acknowledge the receipt of Mr Merivale's letter of the 30th Ultimo enclosing the copy of a Despatch from the Governor of Vancouver's Island, and requesting with reference thereto that a statement of the sums expended in this Country by the Hudson's Bay Company on account of that Settlement, and which Mr Douglas states that it is not in his power to furnish, may be prepared and transmitted to the Colonial Department.
I have accordingly the honour of transmitting the statement required, completed up to the present time in extension of a previous account made up for the information of the Governor and Committee to the 31st May 1855.
Also the Vancouver's IslandManuscript imageIsland Trust Account, rendered to the latest date to which our information extends, shewing the receipts from land, and from other sources, and the application of the monies to public uses.
There is one important item of expenditure which has not been Placed to the Account although it was caused by the Company's occupation of the Island. I allude to the Steam Ship "Otter."
This vessel has been greatly instrumental in protecting the Colony, and contributing in numerous ways to the comfort of the inhabitants; at the same time the Vessel has been employed when not otherwise required, in carrying Stores &c to other portions of the Company's territory, and under such circumstances, we have not included her cost and maintenance in the Account.
Referring to the charge forManuscript imagefor the maintenance of 350 Settlers for one year, it is proper to explain that it was found necessary to allow these persons wages from the date of their embarkation on board ship in this Country, that the voyages average nearly six months; and further, for the first half year after their arrival on the Island, they were unable to provide for themselves.
With regard to the value of the Company's "Establishments, Property, and Effects" on the Island, such as the buildings not included in the present account, the Wharves and the improvement of land &c; an account of the cost or value can only be rendered by the Company's officers at Fort Vancouver Columbia River, and the current worth would probably have to be ascertained by competent valuers on the spot.
Whilst transmitting this Account I beg to observe that severalManuscript imageseveral of the items are necessarily estimates, but I venture to assure you that the greatest care has been taken with a view of not enhancing the amount beyond a fair and just valuation, and we shall be fully prepared if required, to explain the grounds upon which they have been formed.
I have the honour to be Sir
Your mo: obedient humble Servant
John Shepherd

The Right Honble Henry Labouchere M.P.
&c &c &c
Colonial Office
Minutes by CO staff
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Mr Elliot
The Governor of V.C. Island has yet to send his statement.
Acke receipt & put by till the Governor's further information arrives.
ABd 24 Sepr
TFE 25/9
Mr Blackwood
I scarcely like even to ackge the receipt without noticing what seems to me quite monstrous charges.
I will speak to you next week when you have time to bring this to me again.
JB 26 Sept
Mr Ball
I felt the same difficulty that you do, but I think it might be met by adding to the ackt that Mr L. reserves for the present the expression of his opinion on the account submitted to him.
ABd 1 Octr
JB 10 Oct
I think that the terms suggested by Mr Blackwood will do for the
HL 14 Octr
Other documents included in the file
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Draft, Elliot to Shepherd, 20 October 1856, acknowledging receipt of the accounts but reserving for the present any expression of opinion regarding them.
Documents enclosed with the main document (not transcribed)
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1. "Statement of Expenses incurred by the Hudson's Bay Company in promoting the colonization of Vancouvers Island in taking out Settlers, establishing Farms, searching for Coals &c &c &c," signed by Edward Roberts, Accountant, Hudson's Bay House, London, 16 September 1856.
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2. Statements of the Vancouver Island Trust Account, signed by Roberts, London, 12 September 1856.