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1903/18 Rex vs. D.L. Ray and Wing Wo – murder (Trail)

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*Please note that archival source materials are original historical documents that have not been censored, reviewed or otherwise altered by the Royal BC Museum.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. 

BC Archives G-0419

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William Thomas Hoyes, sworn, saith; Q What is your name? A. William Thomas Hoyes. Q Your occupation? A. Physician and Surgeon. Q. You reside in the City of Trail. A. In the City of Trail. Q When did you first see the deceased ? A On the 17th.-about midday of the 17th. Q When did you first see him and what was he suffering from? A. After death or before ? Q Before death? A I don't know when I first saw him, but professionally I presume about two months, more or less- it may have been two weeks more, or perhaps two weeks less. Q What did you find him suffering from ? A. Physical examination at that time revealed to me that it was tubercular in character-that is a physical examination of the lungs-in other words, consumption;the starting stages or incipient stages of consumption. Q Would this cause death in a reasonable time ? A Yes, within a reasonable time. Q At that time how long would you give him to live; that is your medical opinion ? A I think at that time perhaps five or six months/ It depends upon the climate and so on; it is hardly a fair question, perhaps in a regular climate he may live a year or more. Q When did you next see him? A About midday of the 17th. Q Where was he? A Over in the wash-house; 1 don't know the name of the wash-house. Q In a Chinese laundry ? BC Archives GR-0419 BRITISH COLUMBIA. ATTORNEY GENERAL. Box 95 File 1903/18 Attorney General documents.

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