§ SIR. HARRY VERNEY
said, he would beg to ask the Under Secretary of State for the Colonies, What is the state of the Negotiation with the Hudson's Bay Company for surrendering to the Crown the rights which they claim over their territory in North America; and, whether any and what steps have been taken; with a view to establish a communication by road and telegraph from the Atlantic to the Pacific, by the Red River Settlement, the River Satchkatchewan, and British Columbia?
§ MR. MONSELL
, in reply, said, that negotiations were still pending between 310 the Dominion of Canada and the Hudson's Bay Company for surrendering the rights which they claimed over their territory to the Dominion of Canada, and it would be obviously undesirable for him now to make any statement on the subject. With regard to the latter part of the Question he had to inform his hon. Friend that in 1862 communications were begun between the Imperial Government, the Canadian authorities, and the Hudson's Bay Company for establishing passenger and telegraphic communication between the Atlantic and the Pacific. These negotiations continued till 1864, and in consequence of them the Hudson's Bay Company purchased all the necessary materials for constructing the electric telegraph from the Lakes of Canada to the Pacific; but in consequence of the negotiations that were going on for the transfer to the Dominion of Canada of the whole of the territory of the Hudson's Bay Company, the other matter had not been proceeded with.