Gosset to Lytton
The Cloisters, Windsor
Aug 18, 1858.
The return of my wife to the tropical climate of Ceylon, being prohibited by medical advisers, the question of resigning my present appointment of Surveyor General in that Colony, or of seeking office in a more temperate latitude, has forced itself painfully upon my attention.
Reluctant Manuscript image
Reluctant to adopt the former alternation, my thoughts have therefore been directed towards New Columbia, and the intended extension of Government to that settlement.
Learning this day, that the office of Commissioner of Land & Works, (for which I should have formally applied, had I not depended on a semi-official representation made in my favor), has been provided for; but, that the post of Treasurer General has not yet been filled up: I venture respectfully, to beg the favor of a transferManuscript imagetransfer to this post; trusting that in the services, which my acquaintance with the larger questions affecting the resources of a Colony, enabled me to render in Ceylon, in my professional knowledge, and in my experience of Colonial Legislature, gained by participation in the debates on almost every important question brought before the Legislative Council during my residence in Ceylon. Evidence may be found of my fitness for the appointment I solicit, and of my probable utility to a Governor, whoseManuscript imagewhose labors will be unusually severe, from the extraordinary expansion which may be expected & will have to be provided for in this New Colony.
Anticipating enquiry, as to the effect on Ceylon, but without in any manner presuming thereby to suggest a successor in my stead, I beg leave to submit that neither need the interests of Ceylon suffer, nor will the Governor of Ceylon be displeased, by your need acceeding to my request; as, the opportunity would then be afforded you of making (should no better arrangement present itself) an appointmentManuscript imageappointment at once popular in the Colony, and in consonance with Sir Henry Ward's expressed opinions—Captn. Jim, for whom, as the records of your office will show, Sir Henry Ward used his best advocacy without success, being available and still desirous of re-occupying the post in which he acted with so much satisfaction to the public for a year prior to my arrival in Ceylon.
Of the salary to be attached to the office of Treasurer General in New Columbia, as of the intended position of the officer, I am ignorant. I would merely express a hopeManuscript imagea hope that in both respects, the responsibility & importance of the office may be considered, and that such arrangements may be adopted, as would give the holder, that status, wanting which, the best efforts of an individual are too often rendered nugatory. It would be my desire to be efficient in all points, which is my apology for the last remarks.
I may fitly conclude by mentioning, that the appointment of Surveyor General of CeylonManuscript imageCeylon, which would be at your disposal in the event of your kindly sanctioning the proposed transfer, carries with it a Salary of 1200£ a year with horse & travilling allowances.
I have the honor to be Sir
Your most obedient Servant
W. Driscoll Gosset
Surveyor Genl of Ceylon
The Rt Honble Sir Ed. L Bulwer Bart.
Secty of State for HMs Colonies &c
Minutes by CO staff
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Mr Merivale
Express regret at hearing that any cause exists which renders it necessary for Capn Gossett to hesitate about resuming his office at Ceylon, and state that Sir E Lytton's arrangements preclude him from conferring upon Capn. Gossett the apptment of Treasurer in B. Columbia.
ABd. 21 Augt. HM Augt 23
Yes. Capt. Gosset is a good public officer in Ceylon but his claims as regards an appointment in B. Columbia were fully considered a few days since & decided against. Annex draft as proposed.
C. Aug. 25.
Other documents included in the file
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Draft reply, Colonial Office to Gosset, 14 September 1858, stating the arrangements that have been made preclude Lytton from appointing him Treasurer of British Columbia.
Minutes by CO staff
I have delayed hitherto handing this letter to Capt. Gossett, as I thought Sir E Lytton appeared to be as yet uncertain respecting the selection of a Treasurer for British Columbia. But I suppose it had better go?
All right preclude.
Documents enclosed with the main document (transcribed)
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Gosset to Lytton, n.d., as follows:
I should do myself wrong perhaps, by forwarding the enclosed without mentioning, that (unsolicited) Mr Mackinnon, MP for Rye, has promised me a letter of recommendation Manuscript imageto your notice. This letter I expect by every post.
Your[s] obediently
W. Driscoll Gosset
The Rt Honble Sir Ed L Bulwer Bart
Other documents included in the file
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MacKinnon to [Lytton], 20 August, stating that Gosset "would in every respect, be a most eligible person to Survey the newly discovered gold regions in British North America."