[Begly to Maillefert & Raasloff, 15 Sep 1854]PUBLIC WORKS,
QUEBEC, 15th September, 1854.
GENTLEMEN,-Your letter of the 2nd instant, addressed to the Honorable W. H. Merritt, has been laid before the Commissioners of Public Works by that gentleman, and, in reference thereto, I am directed to acquaint you that in all matters of business between this Department and parties employed under it, the proper and legitimate mode of transacting it is directly through the Secretary of the Department; as the intervention of third parties, unconnected with such public business, tends unnecessarily to retard and embarrass the regular official discharge of it.
You will be so good as to make direct application for such maps or other assistance from this office as you may desire. To such applications the Commissioners will give due attention, and will comply with them when they can do so with propriety.
The Commissioners cannot admit that the Department is in any manner accountable for the delay in testing the effects of the blasting required by your contract, as would seem to be implied by your letter. By that contract you were bound to purchase the powder yourselves. The Department interfered only at your request, to induce the Ordnance to sell powder to you out of their stores; further than which they had no connection with the transaction, nor have they any whatever with the obtaining and transport of it.
After some explanation respecting your application for an advance of £500, it was agreed to advance £1000, and instructions were given to the law agent of the Department at Montreal to take the necessary security therefor, in the simplest and most prompt manner, the neglecting to furnish which security is the sole cause why the sum mentioned has not been paid to you long since.
Your most obedient servant,
T. A. BEGLY,
Secretary. Messrs. Maillefert & Raasloff,
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