1866/16 R. vs. Ah Gah, criminal assault against a 5 year old
As part of the Chinese Historical Wrongs Legacy Initiative, the BC Archives has digitized a selection of documents related to criminal prosecutions against the Chinese community from 1866 to 1914, found in GR-0419. These are mainly records created as part of the preliminary hearing held before a judge in order to determine whether there was sufficient evidence to proceed to trial. There are often lengthy witness statements, and cross examinations by both prosecution and defense lawyers. The eventual verdict is sometimes recorded on the outside of the docket. They offer a fascinating glimpse into 19th and early 20th century criminal activity around the province, and ways in which the Chinese community was stereotyped. The records offered for transcription here are a small selection; for additional digitized material from GR-0419 click here.
*Please note that archival source materials are original historical documents that have not been censored, reviewed or otherwise altered by the Royal BC Museum. Some materials may contain content that is racist, sexist or otherwise offensive. In addition, GR-0419 records deal with subjects such as assault, murder and abuse, which may upset some readers. The Royal BC Museum is only the custodian of archival materials; the content does not necessarily reflect the views or policies of the Royal BC Museum.
*All transcriptions are provided by volunteers, and the accuracy of the transcriptions is not guaranteed. Please be sure to verify the information by viewing the image record, or visiting the BC Archives in person.
The course of this death of one Gorwund [illegible]. before that have found dead within this said City [illegible] & before this [illegible] there upon [And other] inquest [Timothy] an Indian late of the City of Victoria in the said Colony laborer, appeared & was examined as a witness [illegible] the cause of the death of the said Gorwund [illegible] , & [illegible] then & there [illegible] & took his [illegible] oath upon [the Holy [illegible] of God before [illegible] Augustus Frederic Pemberton that this evidence which for the said [illegible] should [illegible] in the said court A.F. Pemberton & the said jury so sworn as of should be the truth the whole truth & nothing but the truth the [illegible]. Augustus Frederic Pemberton then & there having [illegible] & competent authority to administer [illegible] oath [illegible] And [illegible]
BC Archives GR-0419 Box 5 File 1866/16 / BRITISH COLUMBIA. ATTORNEY GENERAL. / Attorney General documents.