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72 Joseph Schafer Cape Disappointment is inaccessible toward the sea in con- sequence of the sands, which form an impassable line of break- ers along the coast. It is also cut off from the mainland by high, rocky headlands connected by a deep and marshy impas- sable swamp. There is no lime stone in this part of the coun- try, but sufficient shells have been collected for building chim- neys, etc., and coral, making very fair lime, has been frequently imported from the Sandwich Islands. The anchorage in Baker's Bay is completely under the com- mand of the north end of the Cape. The tide usually rises 8 to 10 feet. The currents are very strong and sweep across the sands, increasing the dangers of the navigation. During the year 1845 ^ spit has formed, nearly across the north channel, on which there is very little water, and changing the former bearings for entering the river. We beg to refer your Lordship to the engineering report of Lieut. Vav- asour and to the accompanying sketch, for a more minute de- scription of this headland, with projects for its defense, etc. The House of Representatives in the United States brought forward a bill on the 5th Feb., 1845, the organization of Oregon as a territory attached to the States.* They then recommended the immediate construction of for- tifications at the mouth of the Columbia River, on Cape Dis- appointment, and we understood from several respectable emi- grants that Lieut. Fremont, U. S. Topographical Engineers, had accompanied the present emigration with the intention of taking possession of the headland on behalf of the United States Government.! The importance they attach to this point has induced us to urge the Hudson's Bay Company, through Mr. Ogden, to take immediate possession of so important a position, in order to prevent the American Government ob- taining it, secretly from the present claimants, and occupy it without the knowledge of Her Majesty's Government. "This bill passed the House of Representatives on February 3d, 1845, by a vote of 140 to 59. fThe editor knows of nothing in the published proceedings of Congress or

the War Department to confirm these statements.----