17th March 1859

17 March 1859

My dear Sir,

I beg to thank you for your kind note.  We are struggling here against very tiresome difficulties and delays arising from most atrocious weather.  The rain is incessant and gusts with mist.  Snow half thawed is deep throughout the woods.  The thickets are the closest and thorniest I ever came upon.  My clothes are becoming ragged!  And the men’s hands are torn in every direction.  I am sending to Victoria for some stout strong common leather gloves for them if such can be procured.  It will be well repaid in saving time and money.  I stand by and sometimes help a little, so I see with my own eyes what a loss of time it is giving a wince and rubbing your hands when a thorn as big and strong as a Shark’s tooth tears across it.

The woods are magnificent, superb beyond description but most vexatious to a Surveyor and the first dwellers in a town.  I declare, without the least sentimentality, I grieve and mourn the destruction of these most glorious trees.  What a grand old Park this whole hill would make!  I am surveying a very beautiful Glen and adjoining land for the People’s Park.  I have already named it “Queen’s Ravine” and trust you will approve.  It divides the town well from the Military Reserve.  By the way, Begbie when here talked sundry matters over with me, which will be the subject of conversation when I have the pleasure of seeing you.  They are not of immediate importance.

I am really glad that impudent fellow Captain Sinclair will not again command the Beaver, depend on it, he was not to the credit of the HBC Co.  I was the more provoked because I receive such marked civility and attention to all my wishes from the American Captain and he is the sole individual in the employment of the Company from whom I have not received the greatest kindness.  I am vexed for their sake as well as for the office I hold.  As for myself individually a man like him cannot by any possibility insult me.  I would as soon bother myself about the bark of a puppy dog.  The one is about the same as the other to me in my private capacity.

I have sent Mr. Burnaby and Lt. Blake of the Marines four days journey into the interior northwards, to bring back information, a sort of reconnaissance.  The District does not appear to be known.  When I was here in the Plumper, I noticed and pointed out to Begbie, Gosset, Parsons and Richards the distance between Pitt Lake and Burrards Inlet being much wider than the maps show, and I also noticed and directed their attention to a very large valley between.  It had every appearance (from the formation) of containing a lake ands I told Gosset I speculated on that lake being in future years, the “feeder by gravitation “for the water to the upper part of the town of Queenborough.  I now learn from the Indians that a lake does exist there.  Burnaby and Blake immediately volunteered their services to explore and also to trace the mouth to Burrards’s Inlet and to report generally on the country North of the Town.  After considerable reluctance on account of the weather I have let them go with 4 days provisions in light marching order, not even tents, 2 Indians, a Canadian Voyageur attached to Parsons’ Survey Party and my own trusty Corporal Brown RE.  They have been away now 3 days in the most deplorable weather.  The rain was in torrents all last night and it is streaming down still in Tropical torrents.  Nothing would gladden my eyes more than to see them back.  I am just off with Captain Parsons to fix “observation Poles” in the mud!  Indian rubber waterproof boots are the only wear here at present.

Kindest remembrances to Mrs. Douglas and your family.

Yours very faithfully,

RC Moody

Note: This is one of those letters that makes me sit back and think about the "might-have-beens".  It is obvious in this letter that Moody and Douglas are not only working well together but Moody appears to have feelings of friendship towards the Governor.  If only they could have remained so, what might have been possible...

Moody mentions the difficulties of how the woods destroy the Men's clothing and that Rubber Boots have replaced the Military equivalent.  Later this year, Dr. Seddall will report to the War Office that a new work uniform has been developed for the Men.

Brown is still Moody's orderly at this point.  In later letters, he is not only removed as Moody's orderly but also demoted in rank to private.