No. 32
Victoria Vancouver's Island
13th December 1855
Sir
Since my communication of the 8th of Ultimo, I have carried into effect, the intention therein expressed of despatching one of the Hudsons Bay Company's Steam Vessels (the "Otter") with a further quantity of Ammunition for the use of the Government of Washington Territory, and herewith is transmitted for the information of her Majesty's Government, a copy of the letter which I addressed, on that occasion, to the
Officer
Officer Administering the Government of that Territory, and also his replies to that, as well as to the letter which I addressed to him on the 6th of November, of which I had the honor of transmitting a copy with my letter to you of the 8th of November last
I feel a high degree of satisfaction, in reporting to you, that the visit of the "Otter" to the American Settlements in Puget Sound, was appreciated, equally by the Executive Officers and the people at large.  
A large force of regular Troops have now arrived in the 'Columbia,' from San Francisco, and reinforcements of Troops with munitions of War, have also been sent into Puget Sound. Those measures have compelled the Indians to abandon the open country, and to retire into the fastnesses of the mountains. It will be an enterprise of time and difficulty to drive them from thence, while they can, at pleasure, fall upon any part of the settled
Country
Country which remains unprotected.  
The horrors of Indian warfare are forcibly exhibited in the tragic events detailed in the Puget Sound Newspapers. The American Settlements on the White River were lately attacked by a small force of Natives, and entirely destroyed; neither man woman nor child having escaped the fury of the savage foe; and the remains of the poor murdered victims, were found exposed and mutilated in the most atrocious manner: an act of barbarity which will bring upon them a fearful retribution.  
The Native Tribes of this Colony continue their usual quiet and friendly demeanour, and have not given any cause of complaint.  
I have the honor to be Sir
Your most Obedt humble Servant
James Douglas
Governor

The Right Honble Sir William Molesworth Bart.
Her Majesty's principal Secretary of State
For the Colonial Department.
Minutes by CO staff
Acknowledge & express satisfaction: and I think also send to the For. office for information?  
HM
F 14
I think that the Foreign Off shd also have copy of 380 with the enclosures.  
JB
16 Feb
See also 1478
HL
18 F
Other documents included in the file
  • Draft reply, Labouchere to Douglas, No. 3, 26 January 1856.  
  • Draft, Merivale to E. Hammond, Foreign Office, 26 February 1856, forwarding copies of despatches reporting on events in Washington Territory.  
  • Draft reply, Labouchere to Douglas, No. 4, 22 February 1856.  
Documents enclosed with the main document (not transcribed)
  • 1. C.H. Mason, Acting Governor of Washington Territory, to Douglas, 10 November 1855, acknowledging receipt of the arms and ammunition and reporting on recent proceedings in defence of the territory.  
  • 2. Douglas to Major J. Tilton, Officer Administering the Government of Washington Territory, 19 November 1855, advising that the Otter had been sent into Puget Sound.  
  • 3. Mason to Douglas, 23 November 1855, advising him of the arrival of the Otter at Olympia on 21 November.  
 
Despatch to London:
Douglas to Molesworth, 13 December 1855, National Archives of the UK, 1481, CO 305/6. The Colonial Despatches of Vancouver Island and British Columbia 1846-1871. Ed. James Hendrickson and the Colonial Despatches project. Victoria: University of Victoria. http://bcgenesis.uvic.ca/getDoc.htm?id=V55132.scx. Accessed 15 December 2018. 

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