Williams, Thomas
Thomas Williams, also known as Tomo Ouamtomy or Tomo Antoine, was a British subject living in the Cowegin Valley on Vancouver Island; and was described by Governor James Douglas as a squatter.1 Williams, the son of an Iroquois voyageur and Chinook mother, and worked for the Hudson's Bay Company in various capacities including, asses[ing] Vancouver Island's resources.2
James Douglas reported to Newcastle on 22 August 1856, that Williams had been shot through the chest and arm by a First Nations man named Tathlasut. Tathlasut had reportedly targeted Williams because he had attempted to seduce his spouse.3 Douglas was not fond of squatters; but he advised that the offender be punished as it is essential for the security of all, that those persons should be protected.4 Douglas, with the aid of Vice Admiral Bruce, entered the Cowichan Valley to find and try Tathlasut for his crime.5 Tathlasut was tried and found guilty of maiming Thomas Williams with intent to murder, and was subsequently hanged.6 Williams did not die as a result of the attack. Douglas later reflected on the incident, never was a single example more urgently demanded for the maintenance of our prestige with the Indian Tribes than on that occasion.7
Mentions of this person in the documents