* A Safe Passage Through The Northwest
Posts Was Guaranteed To Such As Did Not Choose To Enter Into The
Service Of That Company, And The Amount Of Wages Due To Them Was
To Be Deducted From The Price Paid For Astoria.
The conduct and motives of Mr. M'Dougal, throughout the whole of
this proceeding, have been strongly questioned by the other
He has been accused of availing himself of a wrong
construction of powers vested in him at his own request, and of
sacrificing the interests of Mr. Astor to the Northwest Company,
under the promise or hope of advantage to himself.
He always insisted, however, that he made the best bargain for
Mr. Astor that circumstances would permit; the frigate being
hourly expected, in which case the whole property of that
gentleman would be liable to capture. That the return of Mr. Hunt
was problematical; the frigate intending to cruise along the
coast for two years, and clear it of all American vessels. He
moreover averred, and M'Tavish corroborated his averment by
certificate, that he proposed an arrangement to that gentleman,
by which the furs were to be sent to Canton, and sold there at
Mr. Astor's risk, and for his account; but the proposition was
not acceded to.
Notwithstanding all his representations, several of the persons
present at the transaction, and acquainted with the whole course
of the affair, and among the number Mr. M'Kenzie himself, his
occasional coadjutor, remained firm in the belief that he had
acted a hollow part.
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