Page:Diary of ten years.djvu/15

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xi
preface.

by serious illness as to be incapable of transacting any business; the doctors denied all access except to their nearest friends. How the Government was to be carried on was a grave question. As I had married the Governor's stepdaughter, I was admitted as a friend. I found him greatly depressed and distressed. I offered to discharge the duties of the Colonial Secretary temporarily, getting another to do my duties for the time. The Governor was greatly relieved by the offer. By the permitted interviews at his bedside, I was enabled to use the usual formal heading of letters from the office, such as "I am directed by His Excellency," &c., &c. My first step, as soon as a mail served, was to inform the Government at home of the unprecedented position in which I found myself, and begging their instant attention to it. In due time another Colonial Secretary came out, and I gladly resumed my former positions. Both the Governor and Colonial Secretary died.

I have stepped beyond my strict limits in introducing this episode, but the step was almost unavoidable under the circumstances.

George Fletcher Moore.