We do not know his name: Klatsassin and the Chilcotin War

Cardwell to Seymour, No. 30

1 August 1864

I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your Despatches Nos. 7 and 8 of the 20th of May relating to the massacre by Indians of a road party in Bute Inlet and your plans for the detection and punishment of the murderers, and I have received the tidings of these murders with deep regret.

I have noticed with especial satisfaction your anxiety to give your proceedings a strictly legal character, and your refusal of offers of assistance made from beyond the Colony, which might have impressed a different character on your proceedings.

I rejoice to see that you are fully alive to the consequences which an Indian War would entail upon the Colony and I trust that you will be especially careful not to take any measures which may convert an isolated outrage perpetrated by a band of murderers into a tribal War.

I am sensible of the expense which is thrown upon the Colony by the operations which you report, but I would observe that they are undertaken exclusively in the interest of the Colony, and that the expense is in a great measure due to the high rate of profits which the Colonists are realizing and therefore can hardly be viewed as any matter of complaint.

I enclose a copy of a letter from this Department to the Admiralty relative to Naval assistance and to an expression which you used, I believe inadvertently, in one of your semi-official letters which was brought under the notice of their Lordships. I trust that nothing will occur to interfere with the cordial co-operation which ought to subsist between yourself and the Admiral on the Station.

I have etc.

Source: Great Britain Public Record Office, Colonial Office Records, CO 398/2, p. 249, Edward Cardwell, Letter to Seymour, No. 30, August 1, 1864.

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Great Unsolved Mysteries in Canadian History