No. 76, Miscellaneous
15th September 1864
I have the honor to transmit papers relative to fines imposed upon a British Steamer, the "Alexandra" in the course of her trading to Port Angelos in the Washington Territory, United States.
I lean to the belief that these fines have been improperly imposed, and I have reason tobelieveManuscript image believe that the Collector at Port Angelos (United States) holds the same opinion.
It would appear that the law has been put in motion by the owner of the "Eliza Anderson" a rival American Steamer on the same line to enable her to monopolize the trade.
I feel sure that the matter only needs to be brought under the notice of the proper authorities at Washington to rectify anymisunderstandingManuscript image misunderstanding which exists, and I would feel obliged if this were done without unnecessary delay.
I have the honor to be,
Your very obedient Servant
A.E. Kennedy
Minutes by CO staff
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The fines seem to have been inflicted under "An act to amend an act entitled 'An act to provide for the better security of the lives of passengers on board of vessels propelled in whole or in part by steam'" Aug. 30. 1852 ch. 106. U.S. statutes at Large Vol X. p. 61.
The 42nd section (p. 75) enacts that "this act shall not apply to public vessels of the United States or vessels of other countries." and the 44th section repeals "all parts of Laws heretofore made which are suspended by or are inconsistent with this act."
Probably therefore the U.S. authorities would at once disallow the act of the Collector of Customs at Port Angelos, who, according to Gov. Kennedy's account, seems to have imposed the fines (for some reason unexplained) in spite of his own opinion that it was improper to do so.
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Mr Elliot
I apprehend that this complaint shd be referred to the For: Office, and that Lord Russell shd be requested to cause an investigation to be made into it by the B Minister at Washington.
ABd 29 Oct
To the F.O. Request the Under Secy to lay these papers before Earl Russell & to move His Lordship to communicate on the subject with the British Minister at Washington.
TFE 29/10
EC 1 Novr
Documents enclosed with the main document (not transcribed)
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William Moore to Kennedy, no date, advising that as owner and master of the "Alexandra" he had been "obstructed in the prosecution of Lawful Voyages, between this Port and Ports on Puget Sound," and asking for assistance in resolving the unfavourable situation.
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Formal protest submitted by Moore, dated Port Angeles, 6 August 1864, detailing the fines unfairly levied upon his vessel.
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Henry Wootton, Harbour Masters Office, to Acting Colonial Secretary, 14 September 1864, forwarding information from the American authorities relative to the disputed fines.
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William Pickett to Wooton, 14 September 1864, responding to his enquiries with a detailed explanation of the course of events.
Other documents included in the file
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Elliot to E. Hammond, Foreign Office, 3 November 1864, forwarding copy of the despatch and enclosed protest and asking that the information be communicated to the British Minister at Washington.