Cabinet, stated in the Senate in 1892 that “the only reason why it [the line) was not settled twenty years ago was that the expense was too heavy. The United States at one time proposed a vote for the purpose and it was then said that it would cost about two million dollars. The population was small, and they did not feel warranted at the time in making that particular survey." « It will be shown later that remissness as to a joint survey cannot be charged against the United States alone.


The Stikine River is the only stream crossing the lisière which is navigable for any considerable distance by steam vessels, and since the cession it has been the chief water communication with the British possessions beyond the boundary. While the correspondence between the two governments initiated in 1872, respecting the joint survey, was in progress, various questions arose regarding the navigation of this river. These are treated at some length in the British Case, but not in such a way as to greatly aid the Tribunal in determining the boundary in that region. With the latter object in view, it has been thought necessary to publish some of the documents found in the Canadian Sessional Paper No. 125 of 1879, and others pertinent to the subject.

It has been seen that in the proposed survey one of the points of the boundary to be marked was to be on the Stikine River. An examination of the papers produced in the British Case and those to be found in the Appendix to this Counter Case, will enable the Tribunal to ascertain the views of the two governments, and of the various authorities representing them, as to the point on the Stikine River at which it should be crossed by the international boundary. It is believed that the facts so established will materially assist the Tribunal in fixing the course of the international line between the head of Portland Canal and mount St. Elias.

Reference has been made to the questions which arose as to the navigation of the Stikine after the cession to the United States and up to the year 1874. The local customs authorities of the United States at first held that the lower portion of the river was not open to British subjects, and a few years later the British customs officials sought to exclude American vessels from the navigation of the upper part of the river, but when the questions reached the higher authorities, both governments promptly decided that the river was free throughout its whole extent to their citizens and subjects for commercial purposes." That discussion is only useful at the present time to show that, in the minds of the officials of the two governments, the river flowed for a considerable distance through the territory of both countries.

bIbid., pp. 53–86.

a U. S. Counter Case, App., p. 167. 266265

The Stikine is navigable for river steamers for upwards of one hundred miles, and for light draught vessels and at a certain period of the year for a considerable distance further. From an early period its navigability and topography became known. In 1833 Peter Ogden, the Hudson's Bay Company's agent, made a journey up the river for a considerable distance above the point fixed by him as ten marine leagues from the ocean coast. In 1837 the Russian Government made a survey of the river and published a map of it." In 1867 a Hudson's Bay post existed presumably at the place selected by the company in 1833." In 1862 gold was discovered on the river above the boundary as marked by the Russian survey. In 1863 the Russian Government dispatched a government vessel to investigate the facts as to the gold deposits, and a full survey of the river was made. This expedition was accompanied by Professor Blake of Yale University and his report and map were published by the United States in 1868. From 1862 onward the locality was continuously visited by many hundreds of miners. I In 1872 extensive gold deposits were found in the Cassiar district, reached from the headwaters of the Stikine, and for successive years it was a popular mining resort. Several steamers were kept employed, carrying from two to three thousand passengers annually. In 1875 and 1876 the yield of gold exceeded $1,000,000 per year. The British authorities caused the river to be accurately surveyed at different dates. In 1868 a survey was made by Professor Leach for the Hudson's Bay Company to ascertain the bourdary." In 1875 the entire river including the Cassiar District was surveyed for the British Columbian Government by Gustavus A. Wright, a civil engineer, employed in the Cassiar mines, and a map of it was published at San Francisco by the British consul.“ American and British officers likewise made journeys up the river and submitted reports upon its topography and geographical features.

aC. S. Counter Case, App., pp. 53–61, 182. b Ibid., p. 85; British Case, App., p. 228. C.S. Case, App., PP. 272, 283, 313.

Ibid, p. 514. • Ibid., p. 339. 1 See map in Atlas accompanying this counter Case, Jap sheet So. 29. gU. S. Counter C'a:e, App., p. 28. 1 Ibid., Pr. 73, 79.

Notwithstanding the great traffic which had been carried on for several years on the river and the frequent surveys and reports which had been made, the point where the international boundary crossed it had not as yet been marked by the joint action of the two governments. Ogden, the agent of the Hudson's Bay Company, had fixed it for the purposes of his company; the Russian Government had marked it; in 1868 a survey had been made and the line located by the Hudson's Bay Company;' and the local customs authorities of the two governments had from time to time sought to observe a conventional line. But as there was no uniformity in their attempts to mark the boundary, confusion and disputes arose.

In 1875 the subject was brought to the attention of the two governments through a report of the United States collector of customs of Alaska to the Treasury Department that citizens of British Columbia had surveyed and laid out a town five or six miles below Boundary post," where the British Customs House was established on the Stikine River. The Secretary of State, in an interview with the British minister in Washington, informed him of the contents of the collector's report, and stated that American officers on the spot asserted that both the town site and the British custom house were within the territory of the United States, “that is, within the ten marine leagues from the coast at which the boundary should be," and he suggested that the settlers should be called upon to suspend operations until the question of territory could be decided.

Through the Foreign Office in London the matter was laid before the Canadian Government, and it became the subject of deliberation by the Privy Council of the Dominion. The result of its deliberations was embodied in a report and made public. After referring to the terms of the treaty which required the line to follow the summit

a V. S. Counter Case, App., pp. 76, 77, 78, 265. 6 British Case, App., pp. 176, 185, 192; '. S. Counter Case, App., pp. 76, 78, 79, 164.

. S. Counter Case, App., pp. 73, 77. « British Case, App., pp. 185, 192, 197; U. S. Counter (ase, App., pp. 66, 70, 79. € U.S. Counter Case, App., p. 66.

of the mountains, the report said: “ The Stikine River intersects the International boundary in the vicinity of the 57th degree of north latitude;" and it recommended that the true line should be accurately determined on the Stikine without further delay, in view of the possible increase in settlements along its banks.

It therefore recommended that the United States Government be invited to join with the British Government in tixing the boundary at the single point indicated.a

The following year a new case arose. One Choquette had established a trading post in the vicinity, and the United States collector gave him notice that he must pay duties on his goods or move his post beyond the American side of the boundary. He refused and appealed to the Canadian authorities for protection."

The same year the case of Peter Martin occurred. While encamped on the banks of the Stikine, he assaulted the guard in an attempt to escape, was overpowered, taken to Victoria, tried for the offense, convicted and imprisoned. Upon being informed of the facts, the Gorernment of the United States made a demand for his release.C

These occurrences pressed upon the governments the advisability of at least agreeing upon a boundary on the Stikine. When the demand for the release of Martin was made, a surveyor, Joseph Hunter, was dispatched to the Stikine by the Canadian Government, was furnished with a copy of the treaty of 1825 and certain charts, and was instructed “ to ascertain, with approximate accuracy, the boundary on the said river between the Dominion and the territory of Alaska.” 1 When the British minister presented at Washington the suggestion of the Privy Council for a survey of the Stikine, he was met by the offer to send an engineer on each side, who should agree to the best of their ability to a provisional boundary on the Stikine. On receipt of this proposal, the Privy Council reported that Hunter had already made his survey and asked that it might be provisionally accepted as to the boundary.

A comparison of Hunter's map with the map published by the British Government in 1876, known as Wright's Map.' (see Atlas accompanying this Counter Case, Sheet No. 299) will show that the point fixed by Hunter as the boundary was some distance nearer the mouth than any point previously indicated by any other authority, and likewise below the localities which had hitherto been in dispute. Major Wood, of the C'nited States Army, after a journey up the river, reported to the War Department that the Russian monument was at a point on the river 135 miles from its mouth." Hunter's map shows the old Hudson's Bay post was more than sixty miles above the mouth. His survey also shows that the point stated by the Canadian Privy Council in 1875 as the boundary line near the 57 was almost in conformity with a straight line of ten marine leagues from the coast.

al'. S. ('ounter (ase, App., pp. 66-69.
b Ibid., App., pp. 69–71.
< British Case, App., PP. 198.

di Ibid.,


p. 224.

pp. 239-241. fl'. S. Counter Case, App., pp. 76, 77, 78.

Notwithstanding these facts, and with a full knowledge that the line fixed by Hunter was much below that indicated by the Privy Council of Canada and by other British authorities, the Government of the C'nited States, with the spirit of conciliation which later marked its conduct in agreeing to the provisional line at the head of Lynn Canal, consented to regard the point fixed by him as the temporary boundary on the Stikine for customs and jurisdictional purposes, with the understanding that it was not to be construed as affecting the rights under the treaty. This was done with the full knowledge on the part of the United States that its own officers, who had visited and were acquainted with the river topography, differed from Hunter, and also that the Canadian Privy Council and Surveyor General had indicated a line more favorable to the United States.

Mr. Hunter claimed to have found the point where the mountain range described in the treaty as - parallel to the coast" touched the Stikine. This he fixed at a distance of 24.74 miles from the mouth or Rothsay Point, and from the coast in a direct line 19.13 miles. In this action he was in direct contlict with the United States Army officers who had visited the river and of the members of the l'nited States Coast Survey who have examined and reported upon its topography. Nevertheless, the fact reported by Hunter as to the mountain range has up to a very recent date been accepted by the Canadian authorities and writers. For instance, the Executive ('ouncil of British Columbia, in 1885, in the course of an exhaustive review of

« L'. S. Counter Case, App., p. 79. U.S. Foreign Relations, 1878, p. 346. British Case, App., p. 230.

all'. s. Counter Case, App., pp. 79, 80. Ibid., p. 263; L'. S. Case, App., p. 5:35.

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