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No. 578.

EXTRACT FROM THOMAS FRASER'S LETTER FROM LONDON TO D. A. SMITH AT ESQUIMAUX BAY.



(HUDSON'S BAY COMPANY PRIVATE CORRESPONDENCE LETTER BOOK.       638, pp. 177-179.)
May 6th, 1863.

      . . . . “Messrs. Hunt and Henley have directed the attention of the Board to the following notice which has been recently issued apparently by the Government of Newfoundland as it is dated from the Secretarys office St. Johns [sic].
      “Notice is hereby given to all whom it may concern that after the expiration of the present fishing season the duties imposed by the Annual Revenue acts will be collected on that part of the Labrador Coast lying within the Government of Newfoundland and the proceeds applied so far as may be necessary to the expense of protecting the fisheries on that Coast and of the maintenance there of a court of Limited Civil and criminal Jurisdiction.

(signed)      R. CARTER,
Acting Colonial Secretary.      

“Secys. Office,                              
St. Johns, Newfoundland,        
10th June, 1862.”  

      With respect to this Notice, the Board direct me to say that they have joined the Merchants connected with Jersey, Messrs. Hunt & Henley and other parties interested in the trade of the Labrador Coast, in a memorial which has been addressed to His Grace the Secretary of State for the Colonial Department in which attention is called to the injustice which any attempt on the part of the Newfoundland Government to enforce the duties in question will do the few traders regularly settled in that Country while it will leave the American free trader exempt from the tax. This is not the first attempt made by the Newfoundland authorities to enforce this so called right. Hitherto they have found it impracticable to do so, and in point of fact it is believed that they have no right nor jurisdiction to enforce the levying of duties of any kind on the Labrador Coast. It is the wish of the Governor and Committee therefore that if you should see no strong reason for adopting a different

p. 1520

course you should act in concert with the other Settlers and traders in your district in resisting the imposition of the duties in question by all peaceful means. The Board understand that in the event of any Collector being sent round to demand the duties they are to refuse payment, and the Board will approve of your adopting a similar course. It is also the intention of the other parties concerned to decline to attend to any Summons to a Court or any other proceeding that may be adopted by the Collector for insisting on payment and in this respect also it will be as well to act in concert with the others if you should not consider that course as positively objectionable. In short as I have already stated the demand is an injustice which ought to be resisted by all legal means.
      The Ship by which you will receive this letter is to leave Dartmouth on Saturday Morning the 9th instant.

[1927lab]

 

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