No. 4
9 February 1859
I have the honor of transmitting herewith for your information my correspondence with the House of Assembly of Vancouver's Island on the public business of this Colony.
2. The subjects referred to in that correspondence are not of an important nature with the exception ofManuscript imageof that marked Letter I dated 5th February 1859 which touches on the subject of the land reserved near to the Town of Victoria for the benefit of the Native Indian Population.
3. Attempts having been made by persons residing at this place to secure those lands for their own advantage by direct purchase from the Indians, and it being desirable and necessary to put a stop to such proceedings, I instructed the Crown Solicitor to insert a public notice in the "Victoria Gazette" to the effect that the land in question was the property ofManuscript imageof the Crown, and for that reason the Indians themselves were incapable of conveying a legal Title to the same, and that any person holding such land would be summarily ejected.
4. In my communication before referred to you will perceive that I have informed the House of Assembly of the course I propose to adopt with respect to the disposal and management of the Indian Reserve at Victoria, that is, to lease the land, and to apply all the proceeds arising thereupon for the exclusive benefit of the Indians.
5. I have but little doubt that the proposed measure will be in accordance with the views of Her Majesty'sManuscript imageMajesty's Government, and I trust it may meet with their approval, as it will confer a great benefit on the Indian population, protect them from being despoiled of their property, and will render them self supporting, instead of being thrown as outcasts and burdens upon the Colony.
I have etc.
Minutes by CO staff
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Mr Merivale
Might it not be desirable to suggest to the Governor that in any funds acquired from the Sale of Indian Reserves—which it may be intended to appropriate to the service of the Indians—a good portion should be set aside for the purpose of a school for the education of the Manuscript imagechildren; & also earnestly to impress on him a caution against any feeling growing up amongst the Indians of relying exclusively on the Govt for support & maintenance whereby they would become useless to themselves, and an encumbrance to the Community.
As V. Couver's Isd and B. Columbia advance in prosperity they should not overlook the civilization & interests of the Indian, which so far as I can see can be best promoted by the establishment of industrial & educational Schools for the younger members of that race.
ABd 30/3
HM Mh 30
I quite agree with Mr Blackwood.
C Mch 31
Mr B's minute is [admissable?] approved.
Documents enclosed with the main document (not transcribed)
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Correspondence between Douglas and House of Assembly from August 1858 to February 1859 (30 entries, 53 pages).
Other documents included in the file
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Draft reply, Lytton to Douglas, No. 49, 11 April 1859.