The Labrador Boundary

Privy Council Documents

Volume III

[11 April,

[9 Aug.,

[10 Nov.,

[6 June,

p. 1507                                          N

No. 566.

[Enclosure 1 in No. 565.]
No. 1.
Custom House,                     
St. John's, Newfoundland,
11th April, 1826.  

      It having been represented to the Collector that dutiable goods are annually sent to the Labrador, & which from the want of an Officer those escape the payment of duties, under such circumstances the Collector deems it right to appoint a person to as this Summer (without any promise of salary) in order to ascertain whether it may be expedient to make a permanent appointment. We shall not fail to make our report at the end of the year.

(Signed)  A. H. BROOKING, Collr.    
GEO. BAYLY, Contr.          

No. 567.                                        N

[Enclosure 2 in No. 565.]
No. 15.
Custom House, London             
9th August, 1828.  

      With reference to the 5th point contained in your letter of the 11th April last, No. 1, I have it in command to direct you immediately to report at what place on the Labrador Coast you have stationed an Officer, whether you consider one Officer sufficient for the due collection of the duties there, and if not at what places you would recommend other Officers to be stationed.

(Signed)  P. WHITMORE.    

No. 568.                                        N

[Enclosure 3 in No. 565.]
No. 14.
Custom House, St. John's,          
Newfoundland, 10th Novr., 1826.    

      We acknowledge your letter No. 15 of the 9th August last directing us immediately to state at what place on the Coast of Labrador we had stationed an Officer, and whether one Officer would be sufficient for the due collection of

p. 1508

the duties there, and if not at what places we would recommend other Officers to be stationed. We should have acted in obedience to your Orders by making our report immediately but that we wished to gain further information respecting the extent of the Fisheries on that Coast than we were in possession of, and therefore deemed it advisable to wait the return of Mr. Wm. Langley whom we had appointed to act the last Summer in order to certain whether it would be expedient to make a permanent appointment as it was from Mr. Langley the Collector received the information of dutiable goods being annually sent there as stated in our letter No. 1 of the 11th April last.
      The principal Fishing Establishments on that Coast he stated to be as follows, viz, Esquimaux Bay, Dumplin Hr, Packs Harbor, and Grady Harbor, in Sandwich Bay, Domino Harbor in the Isle of Ponds distant twelve leagues from Grady Harbor—Francis Harbor at Cape St. Francis, Battle Harbor—Cape Charles, Fortune, Lance a loop and Blance a Blanc in Green Bay in the Streights of Belle Isle. There is also a Canadian Establishment in Red Bay, there is no communication by land between any of those Establishments. The distance from Blance a Blance the Southern-most Fishery to Esquimaux Bay the Northernmost is 230 miles. Mr. W. Langley carries on a Fishery in Esquimaux Bay—he ran down the Coast in a Boat so far as Grady Harbor distant about eighteen leagues touching in his way at Dumpling Harbour, Packs Harbor and Home Harbor—he collected duties to the amount of £174 14s. 3d. he says he would have gone to Blanc a Blanc the Southmost Fishery but his Boat was too small for such an undertaking. He also informs us that some fifty to sixty vessels from the United Kingdom, Jersey and Canada bringing supplies for the Fishery arrive there yearly, those vessels never make two voyages but remain until the fish is caught and cured and the oil manufactured. They never or very rarely arrive there before the middle of June in consequence of the Ice—there are also some vessels from Nova Scotia, these have no establishments on the Coast, but go there merely to fish and carry away their fish in a green or uncured state, about 200 sail of American Vessels also fish on this Coast.
      The fishery on that Coast commences from the 7th to the 5th July, and continues from six weeks to two months in that short time all the fish are caught. Touching the appointment of more Officers we beg leave to lay before you an offer made by Mr. W. Langley which perhaps may supercede the necessity of such appointments, at least with your approbation it might be tried for one year, as by that means we may be able to ascertain the amount of duties likely to be collected annually, and whether it may be necessary to make further appointments. His offer is to provide a good and sufficient vessel and crew to visit the different fishing establishments three times during the season and to collect the duties for £400 per annum, and should you have any objection to his being engaged in the Fishery he is willing to give it up for an additional £100 per annum. When he received his appointment to act, it was not in our power to promise him any stated allowance; we therefore humbly request you will be pleased to acquaint us with what allowance you may be pleased to make him for his services during the last Summer.

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        We omitted to say that the duties collected by Mr. W. Langley would have been greater but from the circumstance of a vessel from Liverpool bound to Esquimaux Bay having put into this Port with seven Puncheons of Rum &c. on board, the duties on which were paid here amounting to upwards of £50.
(Signed)   A. H. BROOKING, Collr.      
GEO. BAYLY, Contr.            

No. 569.                                        N
[Enclosure 4 in No. 565.]

No. 13.                                               Custom House, London,
6th June, 1829.    
      A memorial having been presented to the Board by Mr. William Langley requesting to be remunerated for his services in collecting duties on the Coast of Labrador—
      I have it in command to acquaint you that have directed him to be paid at this Port the sum of £50 on account of the services alluded to and to be informed that he is at liberty to lay before them through you a statement of any further claims which he may consider to have on the Revenue for collecting the duties in question and you are to report to the Board whether you are satisfied that the sums paid to you by Mr. Langley were the whole amounts of duties received by him, and whether the parties who paid the same passed regular entries with him previously to the duties being paid.
      I am further to direct you to report the nature of the Trade carried on upon the Coast of Labrador at what part thereof the goods are generally landed the description and amount of goods annually imported—the probable annual amount of duties payable on goods and from what places the vessels resorting to Labrador are most usually cleared. You are also to report whether in the event of the Board deeming it expedient to sanction the employment of an Officer on the Coast of Labrador such Officer could collect the duties efficiently if stationed at any particular place, or whether it would be necessary that he should continue afloat and proceed from place to place and if so he would require assistance and of what nature and what would be the probable annual expence. Likewise whether any and what check could be had on the proceedings of such Officer in order to ensure his duly accounting for all monies received by him—and any other observations which may occur to you upon the subject.
      I have at the same time to inform you that Mr. Langley has been apprized that the Board cannot sanction his resuming the collection of duties on the Labrador Coast until they shall have received your return to certain enquiries which they had considered it necessary to make.
(Signed)   W. MACLEAN,     
P. Secy.          



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