« ՆախորդըՇարունակել »
so far as they related to the determination of the boundary line, were as follows:(1)
“ Department of State, Washington, Feb. 25, 1857. “SIR,—The President of the United States, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate, has appointed you the commissioner on the part of the United States to determine and mark the boundary line between the United States and the British possessions, as described in the first article of the treaty between the United States and Her Majesty the Queen of Great Britain and Ireland, of the 15th June, 1846.
“ Enclosed is your commission, and a printed copy of the above-mentioned treaty, as published by this departinent. The first article of the treaty describes the boundary line in the words following, viz. :— From the point on the forty-ninth parallel of north latitude, where the boundary laid down in existing treaties and conventions between the United States and Great Britain terminates, the line of boundary between the territories of the United States and those of Her Britannic Majesty shall be continued westward along the said forty-ninth parallel of north latitude to the middle of the channel which separates the continent from Vancouver's Island, and thence southerly through the middle of the said channel of the Fuca Straits to the Pacific Ocean. Section 4 of the Act passed by Congress August 11th, 1856, for carrying the foregoing article of the treaty into effect, directs
that, until otherwise provided for by law, the proceedings of the said commission shall be limited to the demarcation of that part of the said line of boundary which forms the boundary line between Washington territory and the British possessions.
6 The same Act provides for a chief astronomer and surveyor, and an assistant astronomer and surveyor, a secretary to be appointed by the commissioner, and a clerk to be appointed by the chief astronomer. The employment of such other persons as may be necessary is left to your discretion.
(1) American State Papers, p 96.
“ Lieutenant John G. Parke, of the Topographical Engineers, has been appointed chief astronomer and surveyor, and has been directed to report to you. It is not contemplated, in the appointment of a chief astronomer and surveyor, at all to divide the responsibility which these instructions devolve upon the commissioner. It is not presumed that any difference of opinion will arise, but should that be the case, your views are to govern until a decision can be obtained from this department.
“Mr. George Clinton Gardner has been appointed assistant astronomer and surveyor, and has been directed to report to you.
“You will with as little delay as possible organise the commission, and prepare a suitable outfit to enable you to perform the duties entrusted to you. The above Act referred to authorises the President, for the purpose of aiding in the demarcation of the boundary line, “to direct the employment of such officers, assistants, and vessels, attached to the coast survey of the United States as he may deem necessary or useful ;' and the President has, accordingly, requested the Secretary of the Treasury to give such instructions to the Superintendent of the Coast Survey as will secure his cooperation in the arrangement necessary for the hydrographical portion of the work. Having completed the organisation and outfit, and made other preparations indicated, you will repair to Fuca Straits, viâ San Francisco, to meet the commissioner on the part of the British Government, and proceed with him to determine such portion of the line described in the first article of the treaty as is provided for by the Act above cited.
“You are required to keep a journal showing your operations, and will, from time to time, keep this department advised of your progress; and after your arrival on the Pacific coast, and the completion of your organisation, you will transmit a statement of all persons employed by you, the nature of their occupation, and their compensation.
6. Upon the completion of your field work you will return
to Washington City, and prepare the maps and plans exhibiting your operations, and report of the result of your labours.
W I am, Sir, respectfully,
" W. L. MARCY. “ Archibald Campbell, Esq.,
“ Washington City, D.C."
CAPTAIN PrevOST, the British commissioner, 1) left England in H.M.S. Satellite, steamer, at the close of December, 1856, leaving Captain Richards, his assistant-commissioner, and the chief astronomer and surveyor of the British Commission, to follow him in H.M.S. Plumper, steamer, it being intended that the last-mentioned officer should survey and draw up a chart of the channels and islands between the continent and Vancouver's Island.
Captain Prevost arrived in the Harbour of Esquimault, Vancouver's Island, on the 12th June, 1857, but Captain Richards, in consequence of an accident to the machinery of H.M.S. Plumper, did not arrive until near the end of the year. (2) Mr. Campbell, the United States commissioner, (3) having the United States surveying steamer Active, Captain Alden commander, and the United States brig Fauntleroy, placed under his orders, for the purpose of making such hydrographical surveys as might be required, left New York on the 20th April, and arrived at Victoria, Vancouver's Island, on the 22nd June, 1857.
The joint commission held its first meeting on the 27th June, 1857,6) on board H.M.S. Satellite, in
(1) American State Papers, p. 8. (2) Idem, p. 9.
(4) Idem, p. 48.
(3) Idem, p. 8.
the Harbour of Esquimault, when the commissioners exhibited their respective commissions, which were read, and, according to a minute made by Mr. Campbell, were found to be in due form. The commissioners then discussed their future plans, and agreed to proceed to Point Roberts, towards the north of the Gulf of Georgia, in the neighbourhood of which, it was stated, the initial points of the boundary line might be expected to be found.
On the 17th July, 1857, a second meeting of the joint commission was held on board H.M.S. Satellite, in the Harbour of Nanaimo, on the south-east of Vancouver's Island, when an adjournment was found necessary in consequence of the non-arrival of H.M.S. Plumper. The third meeting took place on the 26th October, 1857, on board H.M.S. Satellite, in Simiahmoo Bay, on the coast of British Columbia, near Point Roberts, when the British commissioner, Captain Prevost, stated that as he had verified the general accuracy of the United States Coast Survey Chart, dated 1854, he was willing to take that chart as the chart upon which the general character of the boundary line should be determined, leaving the correct tracing of that line to be subsequently carried out by the surveying officers.
The first article of the treaty of 1846 was then read and discussed, () Captain Prevost arguing that Rosario Strait was the only channel which would the answer the language of the treaty, and Mr. Campbell stating that in his opinion the boundary line should
(1) American State Papers, pp. 48, 49.