Tag: North West Rebellion

Kamloops. B.C. 20 Jun 1885 Marcus Smith Letter to his wife cf Riel

Kamloops 1885, My dear Nannie, ..When Big Bear’s cattle are all consumed he will have to live on fish and small game but he will probably (when he finds points on Beaver River occupied by troops) strike north eastward for Green Lake on the main Hudson Bay Company’s brigade trail to the north – Green Lake (the north end of it) is near a bend of Beaver River about 140 miles from Carleton – to which troops will probably be sent if they don’t catch Big Bear before – I think it is a mistake they did not send Col. Otter with his brigade to catch Big Bear as that brigade seems best fitted for Indian warfare from their rapid marching – but I dare say you would sooner see the boys home – then chasing Indians though it appears they are disappointed in not being allowed to go.

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New Westminster, B.C. 27 May 1885 Marcus Smith letter to wife

May 27th 1885,
My dear wife
                     When you read the enclosed clippings respecting the reported battle at Eagle hills you will understand how anxious I was and how glad to receive your telegram –

Of course as the report came from the New York correspondent of a San Francisco newspaper and as it stated there were 19 Englishmen and 21 Canadians killed – a distinction not likely to be made and as there were probably not 19 Englishmen in the whole of Otter’s forces. there was an air of improbability about it – but at the same time as the capture of a number of waggons and teamsters was confirmed which would take place near the E(a)gle hills I thought Otter would have made a dash to recover them as the troops at the time would be short of provisions. Besides as you will gather from my letter of three weeks ago respecting Otter’s battle of May 2nd – I was afraid he was ambitious to distinguish himself even at the expense of heavy losses of men as he never had any experience in active warfare which requires judgement and caution of a different kind from mere drill

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Kamloops, B.C. 17 May 1885 Marcus Smith letter to wife

My Dear Wife, I have been up the line for a week and on my return yesterday (saturday) evening received your letter of the 2nd instant together with a number of newspapers mostly “weekly” which were very acceptable as they give a great deal of news about the position of the troops and other details which are not telegraphed here or copied in the newspapers. The latest telegram we have had was General Middleton’s official account of the battle at Gabrielle’s crossing on saturday the 9th inst. In which he had driven the Rebels from their position with very small loss of troops – 1 killed and 6 wounded – he concludes that he expects next – day – (sunday) to clear the Rebels out of Batoche

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