House of Commons, 22 January 1890, Canadian Confederation with Alberta and Saskatchewan

37 [JANUARY 22, 1890.] 38
Holton, Weldon (Albert),
Ives, Weldon (St. John),
Jamieson, Welsh,
Joncas, White (Cardwell),
Jones (Halifax), White (Renfrew),
Kenny, Wilson (Argenteuil)
Kirk, Wood (Westmoreland),
Kirkpatrick, Wright, and
Landerkin, Yeo.—110.
And that the Quorum of the said Committee do consist of Nine Members.



Armstrong, Guay,
Audet, Guillet,
Bain (Soulanges), Hesson,
Bain (Wentworth), Innes,
BĂ©chard, Joncas,
Bell, Jones (Digby),
Bernier, Kirk,
Boisvert, Labrosse,
Bourassa, Landry,
Bowman, Lang,
Brien, Laurie (Lieut.-Gen.),
Bryson, LĂ©pine,
Burdett, Livingston,
Burns, Macdonald (Huron),
Cameron, McCulla,
Carling, McMillan (Huron),
Carpenter, McMillan (Vaudreuil),
Chapleau, McNeill,
Chisholm, Mara,
Choquette, Marshall,
Cimon, Masson,
Cochrane, Mitchell,
Coughlin, Montplaisir,
Coulombe, Neveu,
Couture, Paterson (Brant),
Daly, Perley,
Daoust, Perry,
Davin, Platt,
Davis, Pope,
Dawson, Putnam,
Desaulniers, Robertson,
Dessaint, Rooms,
Dewdney, Ross,
Dickinson, Rowand,
Doyon, Ste. Marie,
Earle, Semple,
Edwards, Smith (Ontario),
Eisenhauer, Sproule,
Ferguson (Leeds & Gren. ), Stevenson,
Ferguson (Renfrew), Sutherland,
Ferguson (Welland), Taylor,
Fiset, Trow,
Fisher, Tyrwhitt,
Flynn, Watson,
Gauthier, White (Renfrew),
Gigault, Wilson (Elgin),
Godbout, Wilson (Lennox),
Gordon, Wright, and
Grandbois, Yeo.—98.
And that the Quorum of the said Committee do consist of Nine Members.
Motion agreed to.


Mr. COSTIGAN moved for leave to introduce Bill (No. 9) to amend the Adulteration Act, Chap. 107, Revised Statutes. He said: The first Object of this Bill is to change the present law so that if food or drugs be found in the possession of any person which on analysis be found to be adulterated, the cost of such analysis shall be charged to the owner of such adulterated article. This Bill when passed will be no tax whatever upon the honest trader and it proposes merely to make the vendor of adulterated articles pay the cost of the analysis. The other amendments are principally with the object of strengthening the hands of the department in prosecuting under this Act. On account of the wording of one section of the Act, we find a difficulty in proceeding in certain matters, and to remove that difficulty, the amendment is proposed.
Motion agreed to, and Bill read the first time.


Mr. MCCARTHY moved for leave to introduce Bill (No. 10) to amend the North-West Territories Act. He said: In introducing this Bill I think that perhaps it might be as well that I should offer some explanation, though I do not think that any defence or apology is called for on my part in bringing this matter before the House. It is, however, necessary that there should be some explanation, because it must occur to us all that it is most extraordinary that in the North-West Territories, and so long ago as 1877 an Act should have been passed in this Parliament whereby the dual language was imposed upon the Territories; of course without any consent of theirs, because at that time there was practically no people in the Territories to assent, or consent, or dissent from the proposition. I think it is also requiring of explanation, not, as I say, to move for a repeal of this clause, but to give some account of how and why it is we find this clause in the North-West Territories Act. Now, the history of the matter, as I understand it, is this: I think it was a year or two, or perhaps three or four years, before the Act was passed to which I am about to refer more in detail, that the North-West Territories were constituted, or, at all events, brought under some kind or form of government—during the time my hon. friend the Prime Minister who now leads the Government and the House was also in the position he occupies to-day. In 1877, however, when my hon. friend from Bothwell (Mr. Mills) was Minister of the Interior in the Administration of the hon. member for East York (Mr. Mackenzie), he brought in a Bill to amend the North-West Territories Act, but that Bill as it was introduced into this House did not contain the clause with regard to the dual language which I now propose that the House should expunge. The Bill went in due course to the Senate, and in the Senate it was amended by the introduction of this clause; and, so far as I have been able to ascertain, there appears to have been no objection made in that body to the clause, which was introduced, as I am told, by an hon. Senator at the instance of the then leader of the Government in that House, the Hon. Mr. Scott. I do not pretend to vouch for that, but I am so credibly informed. I rather think that that cannot be true, however, because when the Bill reached this House with these amendments, and concurrence in them was called for, my hon. friend from Bothwell (Mr. Mills) seemed to be surprised at the introduction of this articular clause, and expressed his regret at it. have extracted from Hansard what said on that subject, and I can hardly imagine that his 39 [COMMONS] 40 surprise was feigned, or that his astonishment was not expressed in perfect good faith. Speaking of the amendment, the hon. member for Bothwell is reported to have said:
"One of them, he stated, provided for the publication of the proceedings of the North-West Council in English and French, and for the use of both languages in the courts. They had thought that this was a matter which had better be left to the Council in question. He regretted that the amendment had been made, but it would be impossible to get the measure through at this late period in the Session, unless the amendments were accepted. The action taken by the Senate would add very considerably to the expense. Almost every one in that art of the country spoke Cree, though some spoke, in addition, English or French, and, if the proceedings were to published in the most prevalent language, Cree should be chosen for the purpose."
With these observations the amendments were concurred in without any objections being made, so far as I have been able to see, by any hon. member on the floor of this House; and I was either present or ought to have been present, and I therefore share in the blame attachable to the proceedings on that occasion. Then, I think it was in the year 1880, this North-West Territories Act was again dealt with, and again we find this clause, which I venture to call an objectionable clause; and I believe that on that occasion also it was passed through both Houses of Parliament without objection being made by any hon. member on either side of the House. And finally last Session, in the proposition submitted to us by the Government in the Bill then brought down, the same clause is to be found; and although the Bill did not advance very far, so far as it did go, no objection appears to have been made to the clause. Now, Sir, all this may appear, perhaps, to form some good reason against the proposition I have now the honor to make. I venture to think, however, that that is not so. The enactment in question is as follows:—
"Either the English or the French language maybe used by any person in the debates of the said Council, and in the proceedings before the courts, and both those languages shall be used in the records and journals of the said Council, and the ordinances of the said Council shall be printed in both those languages."
Now, I venture to say that if a constitution were framed for a new country, it would never occur to any person to do so foolish a thing as to stipulate for two official languages. I venture to think that, with the knowledge which there is on the subject at this time, it never would occur to any person that it was a proper thing to create or perpetuate, as the case might be, two official languages; and yet practically that was what was done in that North-West Act. What is the explanation, Mr. Speaker, of this extraordinary piece of legislation, which appears to have been assented to by the House on three or four different occasions without objection on the part of any one? It is not to be found in the Treaty of Cession, although a very large number of persons seem to be under the impression that by the treaty negotiated at the time this country was ceded to the British Crown, the right of the nguage was guaranteed to the French. As I say—and the fact cannot be too widely known or too often repeated—that is not so. The mistake is one which very generally prevails; and on looking at articles on this subject— articles by very learned men—I have been surprised that this statement has been very generally made and very generally accepted. But there is not a word to be found in the treaty or in the Articles of Cession anywhere by which the language was guaranteed to the conquered French.
Mr. AMYOT. Not conquered—ceded.
Mr. MCCARTHY. Ceded, my hon. friend says, although I venture to think the other expression is the more correct. But there is not a word to be found either at the time of the cession or conquest, or whatever it may be called, which gives any ground for the statement that the language was guaranteed to the French inhabitants of this country. Nor is it to be found in the Act known as the Quebec Act. That Act went a good deal further than the treaty, as we all know. The treaty guaranteed to the French people their religion, and that so far as the laws of Great Britain permitted; but the Quebec Act went much further. It restored to them their laws—the civil laws to which they had been accustomed; and it restored to their church certain rights and privileges which are enjoyed to this day; but it dealt not with this question of language. Well, the next stage would be perhaps in 1791, when the Province of Lower Canada was constituted; and at the time of the constitution of that Province the language was not dealt with either; though very shortly afterwards, it is perfectly true as an historical fact, the French members of the Assembly then constituted did claim the right, and enforced the right, to use their language; and I believe the proceedings were carried on in both languages in that Assembly—however, not by any statute law, or by anything more than a resolution of the Assembly, which had a perfect right to so resolve and so act. Well, we come down to the time of the Rebellion and the Real Union of the Provinces in 1840 by the Act of that date; and there, so far from the language being allowed to the French, as we all know, consequent on the report of Lord Durham, who was sent out here to investigate the causes of the Rebellion—a report which was recognised on all hands as a most statesmanlike document—that in Lower Canada, at any rate, it was more a trouble of race than that of alleged misgovernment, a clause was introduced into the Union Act of 1841 by which the use of the French languagewas absolutely prohibited instead of being permitted. So that the first piece of legislation we have on the subject is a clause prohibiting the use of the French language. That was followed in the Parliament of the United Provinces by an Address to the Crown, passed unanimously, I think, in 1844, asking for the repeal of that clause, and accordingly, in 1848, that clause in the Union Act was repealed. Now, Sir, I come down to 1867, to the time of the British North America. Act, and there we find that the dual languages are for the first time permitted by legislative enactment; but the permission is restricted to this Parliament and to the Assembly and Legislative Council of the Province of Quebec. It is not at all intended by that Act, from anything to be gathered from it, that the use of the dual languages is to be permitted in any of the other Provinces, much less in  any Province which did not even then belong to Canada, and which were acquired afterward; when the Hudson Bay Company sold us their, territory of Rupert's Land, by which that great country passed under the Dominion of Canada. Therefore, there was no legislative warrant for the use 41 [JANULRY 22, 1890.] 42 of the French language in that territory in any sense, and it is based and founded, if founded at all, simply on the will of Parliament, and it ought, therefore, to be based on some good and sufficient reason. Now, is it, or is it not, a matter of importance that the dual language or the additional French language should be permitted—I will not say permitted —should be encouraged and fostered throughout the Dominion of Canada? If it is a matter of no importance—and so, perhaps, it was considered at the time—of course the motion I am making to Parliament, the Bill I have had the honor to ask leave to introduce, is an unnecessary measure, and will no doubt be so received and dealt with by this House. But in my judgment it is by no means an unimportant matter. On the contrary, I think, and I assert here in my place in Parliament, that there is no more important matter in the formation of the character of a people than the language that they speak, and, after all said and done, I think it will be found that nations and races are distinguished and are distinctive more by reason of the language they speak than by the blood which is common to or supposed to be common to them all.
Mr. MILLS (Bothwell). Switzerland.
Mr. MCCARTHY. I think it would be found upon an investigation of the subject, and I will appeal to the very closest investigation upon the subject, that this is the well-known and accepted truth. My hon. friend from Bothwell (Mr. Mills) refers to Switzerland or to the Swiss. When the proper time comes for the discussion of this Bill, that will certainly be a proper illustration to be dealt with; but I think my hon. friend would not, even if his view were correct, adopt the rule from the exception. Everyone knows that the use of several languages in Switzerland is an exception to the general rule, and should not be adopted as the general rule.
Mr. DESJARDINS. Well, well.
Mr. MCCARTHY. My hon. friends laugh, and I hope, when the proper time comes, they will justify their laughter by something more than sneers. Before I sit down I will fortify my statement by an authority whose opinions I believe will be accepted, and certainly cannot be gainsaid. If, then, as I assert, it is an important matter in the great question of national life, I would ask my hon. friends in this House what we are assembled here for if not for the purpose of promoting national unity and building up a great country in the enormous territory we have under our control? Is not that the grandest and greatest object that has been entrusted to us as the representatives of a people; and towards that great object are we dealing truly if we are sowin the seeds of dissensions and of future trouble by legislation of this kind.
Some hon. MEMBERS. Hear, hear.
Mr. MCCARTHY. My hon. friends perhaps will allow me to proceed quietly because there will be a full opportunity of debating this subject, and then I hope there will be a fair hearing given to all opinions in this House. I have a right to my opinion and I intend to maintain it, notwithstanding what my hon. friends may say. In my opinion it is of the greatest importance to endeavor to make this great country united in fact as we are endeavoring to unite it in substance. We are spending our means, we have spent enormous sums of money, we have united the Atlantic to the Pacific we have spent enormous sums, I say, on the Intercolonial Railway to unite the Maritime Provinces with the heart of the Dominion, but what profits it if, at the same time, we are passing measures and promoting legislation which separates and divides the people into two separate races, or which is perpetuating that division; which is not only permitting it in the Province of Quebec, but in the new territories belonging to the Dominion. As a matter of dollars and cents, as a matter of mere money, the acquisition of the North-West, looked upon as a speculation, has been a loss, and, except for the purpose of building up a great nation, which we are willing to do, there can be no justification for the expenditure, not only in the acquisition of that great country, but in the building of those great railways at enormous expenditure, bringing into the market, to compete with our farmers, vast quantities of land, which must diminish the value of the land of the farmers in the older Provinces, while they are actually spending their money in the acquisition of the land which accomplishes this result. The only object we have had in all this has been to create on the northern part of this continent a great nationality, to build up a great country, one that our descendants would be proud to occupy and proud to belong to; and that is the only justification of the procedure which has been adopted from first to last since the passing of the Confederation Act. As I stated before, I will read from a document which I do not think hon. gentlemen will say does not convey a fair statement of this question of language. I will read from an article written by Professor Freeman, in which he deals with this question in the following words:—
"And now, having ruled that races and nations,though largely formed by the working of an artificial law, are still real and living things, groups in which the idea of kindred is the idea around which everything has grown, how are we to define cur races and our nations? How are we to mark them off one from the other? Bearing in mind the cautions and qualifications which have been already given, bearing in mind large classes of exceptions which will presently be spoken of, I say unhesitatingly that for practical purposes there is one test, and one only, and that test is language. We may at least apply the test negatively. It might be unsafe to rule that all speakers of the same language have a common nationality, but we may safely say that, where there is not community of language, there is no common nationality in the big est sense. As in the teeth of community of language there may be what for all political purposes are separate nations, so without community of language there may be an artificial nationality, a nationality which may be good for all political purposes, and which may engender a common national feeling, still, this is not quite the same thing as that fuller national unity whic is felt where there is community of language. In fact, mankind instinctively takes language as the badge of nationality. We so far take it as the badge that we instinctively assume community of language as a nation as the rule, and we set down anything t at departs from that rule as an exception. The first idea suggested by the word Frenchman, or German, or any other national name, is that he is a man who speaks French pr German as his mother tongue. We take for granted, in the absence of anything to make us think otherwise, that a Frenchman is a Speaker of French, and that a Speaker of French is a Frenchman."
I think that will not be denied as a correct doctrine, but I will further trouble the House with a'reference from a man very distinguished in this branch of science, Professor Muller, who, in his 43 [COMMONS] 44 lectures delivered before at the Oxford University Extension meeting, says:
"It is said that blood is thicker than water, but it may be said with even greater truth that language is thicker than blood. If, in the interior of Africa, surrounded by black men, whose utterances are utterly unintelligible, we suddenly met with a man who could speak English, we should care very little whether he was English, or Irish, or American. We should understand him and be able to exchange our thoughts with him. That brings us together far more closely than if we met a Welshman speaking nothing but Welsh, or a Scotchman speaking nothing but Gaelic; or for all that, an Englishman who, having been brought up in China, could speak nothing Chinese. A common language is a common bond of intellectual brotherhood, far stronger than any supposed or real community of blood. Common blood without a common language leaves us as perfect strangers. common language, even without common blood, makes the whole world feel akin."
Again, speaking of the other question, the question of race, a subject of very great interest, a subject which has been pursued by scientific men up to a recent period, this seems to be the result. The Professor quotes in his lecture from the Director of the American Bureau of Ethnology, who says:
"There is a science of anthropology composed of subsidiary sciences. There is a science of sociology, which includes all the institutions of mankind. There is a science of philology, which includes the languages of mankind. And there is a science, philosophy, which includes the opinions of mankind. But there is no science of ethnology, for the attempt to classify mankind in groups has failed on every hand."
There is no such thing as a Celtic skull any more than a Saxon skull; no such thing as Celtic hair any more than Saxon hair. It is only by language and by the community of language, that men are formed into nations. Finally, speaking of the whole subject of the science of language, the professor says:
"These may seem but idle dreams, of little interest to the practical politician. All I can say is that I wish that it were so. But my memory reaches back far enough to make me see the real and lasting mischief for which I feel the science of language has been responsible for the last fifty years. The ideas of race and nationality founded on language have taken such complete possession of the fancy, both of the young and the old, that all other arguments seem of no avail. Why was Italy united? Because the Italian language embodied Italian nationality. Why was Germany united? Because of Arndt's song, 'What is the German's Fatherland?' and the answer given, 'As far as sounds the German tongue.' Why is Russia so powerful a centre of attraction for the Slavonic inhabitants of Turkey and Germany? Because the Russian language, even though it is hardly understood by Servians, Croatians and the Bulgarians, is known to most closely allied. Even from the mere cinders of ancient dialects, such as Welsh, Gaelic and Erse, eloquent agitators know how to fan a new, sometimes a dangerous, fire.
I would just add to that an extract from the report of Lord Durham who dealt with the matter, not solely from a scientific, but from a practical point of view. When he was sent here, as we all know, he was a Liberal of the Liberals, and he was sent here by Lord Melbourne's Government for the purpose of investigating the difficulties and ascertaining what caused the rebellion in both Upper and Lower Canada. I have nothing to do at the moment with his report with regard to the Upper Province, but in his report on the Lower Province, he found the rebellion to be caused mainly, if not altogether, by race difficulties. Whatever else there was, whatever other prejudices there were, whatever other causes there might be, the trouble, when probed to the bottom, was found to be caused by race difficulties. Now, it may be said that has nothing to do with language, but when hon. gentlemen take the trouble to pursue the subject further they will find that when speaking of race, they mean a community speaking the same language. When you talk of a race you will find, when you investigate the subject, that the race is made up, not of men of one blood, but of men who have been adopted into the race, and there are instances of that in the Province of Quebec. I would like to know whether the Highland soldiers Who were disbanded after the cession have not been received and adopted by the French Canadians, and are not now considered as much French Canadians as those who came from France a hundred years before that time? That process is going on constantly. Can you distinguish an Englishman who came over at the time of the Conquest from an Englishman of three or four centuries earlier? Or, to come back to more recent times, is the Frenchman who came over to England during the time of the troubles, and owing to the troubles in France, and after a generation or two changed his name to an English name; is he to be distinguished from those who have descended from a long line of English ancestry? It is plain, that what makes the nation is language; and, therefore, when one speaks of race, as these distinguished writers have done, they meant a community speaking the same language. But at the moment I am not dealing so much with that question, which I will come to by-and-bye, as with the particular matter of the difficulties in the Lower Province, and I will quote again from Lord Durham's report about this difference of language:
"The difference of language in this respect produces effects quite apart from those which it has on the mere intercourse of the two races. Those who have reflected on the powerful influence of language on thought, will perceive in how different a manner peeple who speak in different languages are apt to think; and those who are familiar with the literature of France, know that the same opinion will be expressed by an English and French writer of the present day, not merely in different words, but in style so different as to make utterly different habits of thought. This difference is very striking in Lower Canada; it exists, not merely in the books of most influence and repute, which are, of course, those of the great writers of France and England, and by which the minds of the respective races are formed, but it is observable in the writings which new issue from the Colonial press. The articles in the newspapers of each race are written in style as widely different as those of France and England at present, and the arguments which convince the one are calculated to appear utterly unintelligible to the other. The difference of language produces misconceptions yet more fatal even than those which it occasions with respect to opinions; it aggravates the national animosities, by representing all the events of the day in utterly different light."
Now, I venture to think, I have, at all events to some extent, made good the proposition which I am dealing with, that is, that language is of great importance, that it is of vital consequence to a nation that the language spoken by its people should be common to them all, that they should not, at all events, he encouraged and trained in speaking different languages.
Mr. MILLS (Bothwell). Alsace and Lorraine seem to be exceptions to the rule.
Mr. McCARTHY. I am glad to see that my hon. friend, at one time Minister of the Interior, has changed his views. He regretted the introduction of the French language in the North-West Territories at the time he consented to that amendment, and I give him credit for good faith in that regret. Certainly circumstances since have not altered in favor of the policy which my hon. friend seems now 45 [JANUARY 22, 1890.] 46 to have adopted. But I am glad to see that he stands firmly by the Bill which he fathered. At all events, on his part there can be no going back, and he is not accustomed to change any opinion he has once entertained. Now, I say, what has been the result in this country? Let hon. gentlemen remember that when this country was ceded to the British Crown there was not more than 60,000 or 65,000 French Canadians—I think that number includes, though I am not quite certain, those who dwelt on the banks of the Illinois, and who did not form a part of what is now the Dominion of Canada. However that may be, instead of encouraging them in the use of their language, had a policy been pursued of inducing them—not by any harsh means at all, not by any aggravating measures—to speak the English tongue, I want to know whether to-day, instead of the difference, the cleavage of race, which we see going on, and which is becoming more and more pronounced, and which is calculated to rend this Dominion in twain, if some stop is not put to it—I would like to know whether we would see the spectacle that we see today? I think it is perfectly plain that we would not see it. I think no injustice would have been done, and that in one generation, or in two at most, my hon. friends that now represent the Province of Quebec, or their ancestors, would have been speaking English, and would have been English in fact, English in sentiment, just as much as those who have gone to the other side of the line, no matter what country they come from, whether from Austria, from Italy, from Germany, or any other country in Europe, have now become assimilated and form part of the American people, not merely in name but in truth and in fact. Well, it is said that this is a matter of no consequence. Now, I venture to state that Lord Durham did find it to be a matter of consequence, and as I am desirous of convincing my hon. friends, if I possibly can, I want to give authority for what I say. I see there is a good deal of feeling on the subject, more than I should have expected, but I assume that my hon. friends are open to reason, and willing to listen to argument. Now, Lord Durham says in his report again:
"I expected to find a contest between a government and a people; I found two nations warring in the bosom of a single state; I found a struggle, not of principle, but of race: and I perceived that it would be idle to attempt any amelioration of laws or institutions, until we could first succeed in terminating the deadly animosity that now separates the inhabitants of Lower Canada into the hostile divisions of French and English."
Further down:
"We are ready to believe that the real motive of the quarrel is something else, and that the difference of race has slightly and occasionally aggravated dissensions, which we attribute to some more usual cause. Experience of a state of society, so unhappily divided as that of Lower Canada, leads to an exactly contrary opinion. The national feud forces itself on the very sense, irresistibly and palpably, as the origin or the essence of every dispute which divides the community; we discover that dissensions, which appear to have another origin, are but forms of this constant and all-pervading quarrel, and every contest is one of French and English in the outset, or becomes so ere it has run its course."
Now, I think that, as regards that time, at all events, Lord Durham's statement may be taken as good evidence—and no one would question his perfect impartiality—of what he saw on the spot ere and reported to his Government. I hear the First Minister remark that Lord Durham did not write the report himself. That may be perfectly true; but a man as competent as Lord Durham was here—Mr. Buller—who is credited with having written the report, and so, whether it is called Lord Durham's or Mr. Buller's report, does not alter the fact, if fact it was, that such was the result of their investigation on the spot. But is it true or not that these things have changed, is all this matter of language a matter of no moment, a matter which does not call for investigation in this House or inquiry by the representatives of the people? Why, we have had statements made by the Premier of the Province of Quebec, who leads a great majority of his fellow countrymen in that Province, and there is no use denying, and I say it in the presence of the right hon. gentleman and the Government that I have hitherto followed, that there can be no question whatever that Mr. Mercier is to-day the true representative of the French Canadians of the Province of Quebec. Has he given any uncertain sound upon this question of Nationalism? What means it when he forms a party and calls it the National party? We have our National Policy. That was not a policy confined to one Province or one part of the Dominion, but a policy intended to apply and embrace the whole Dominion. We know, however, that the Nationalist party in the Province of Quebec is intended to embrace and consolidate one of the races, divided by the language—
Some hon. MEMBERS. No, no.
Mr. McCARTHY—and that it has successfully done so.
Mr. AMYOT. No such thing.
Mr. McCARTHY. I cannot accept the hon. gentleman's disclaimer.
Mr. LANGELIER (Quebec). We cannot accept your assertion.
Mr. McCARTHY. I may be asked what evidence I produce. I ask what is the meaning of the word "Nationalist?"
Mr. AMYOT. I will tell you later on.
Mr. McCARTHY. I shall be glad to have an explanation, but I must accept the definition of the word as I find it. Nationalism means French nationality in that sense. What did Mr. Mercier say, speaking in the presence of the hon. gentleman leading the Opposition in this House, if I am not misformed—at all events, the hon. gentleman spoke very shortly after him.
Mr. LAURIER. I spoke for myself.
Mr. McCARTHY. I said Mr. Mercier spoke in your presence. I am only stating what Mr. Mercier said.
Mr. LAURIER. You do not expect me to accept your statement.
Mr. McCARTHY. I am going to do justice to the hon. gentleman, and say that he disclaimed it. Now, what did Mr. Mercier say?
"To-day the reuse and the blue should give place to the tri-color. They must be united if they wish to make their nationality powerful."
Mark the words—"their nationality." Perhaps these words do not mean what they appear to say:
"It was a triumph for the National cause."
It does not need an explanation from the hon. gentleman, who, I believe, is a warm supporter of Mr. Mercier in provincial affairs.
47 [COMMONS] 48
"For the sake of their nationality, for the sake of their religion, they must be united."
Who must be united?
"The strength of the French Canadian people lay in the union of the people with the clergy. By coupling the name with Jesuit hero, Breboeuf, with the immortal Jacques Cartier they said to their insulters, it is useless to imagine that we will ever cease to be French and Catholic. This monument declares that after a century of separation from our ancient mother we are still French; more than that, we will remain French and Catholic."
Is there any doubt about these words? What is meant by "National?" These words were said in the presence of the hon. gentleman who leads the Opposition in this House, as he does not deny, and he allowed them to pass without rebuke. I quite admit that when the hon. gentleman spoke he made no such declaration of policy in his own behalf, and when he delivered himself afterwards in Toronto—perhaps it would have been better if he had said it in Quebec—he stated that he for one was not in favor of French nationality. There is no doubt, at all events, as to what was meant by the hon. gentleman who leads the Local Government in the statement which called forth in Toronto a disclaimer from the leader of the Opposition in this House. But the hon. gentleman will remember that when he went back to his Province he was not warmly greeted for this frank and rather liberal declaration which he made in the Pavilion at Toronto.
Mr. LAURIER. Do not pander to party prejudice.
Mr. McCARTHY. When the hon. gentleman returned he threw himself into an election then pending, and the result (I should like the hon. gentleman to explain, if the result was due to any other cause,) was that the majority of the candidate for the seat of the late Capt. Labelle was very much increased, the position not being appreciably changed except by this declaration, which was not received with favor by the press of Quebec, or a portion of the press of that Province. Is it not perfectly true also, that a large section of that press, more or less influential, having, I believe, an influence quite as great perhaps as any newspapers are supposed to possess, spoke out on this subject with no uncertain sound. Let me read to the House, what is perfectly well known to the members of the Province of Quebec, what La Vérité said on more than one occasion. We gather the signs of the times from newspaper articles and from the declarations of public men. I may perhaps be belittling Mr. Mercier by reading newspaper extracts in attempting to bolster up that hon. gentleman, but that newspaper makes such a declaration that I cannot pass it without remark. That journal says:
"But such was not is not, never will be, the desire of French Canadians. For us, Confederation was and is the means to an end. It is a means of enabling us to dwell in peace with our English neighbors, whilst safe guarding our rights, developing our resources, strengthening us, and making us ready for our national future. Let us say it boldly—the ideal of the French Canadian people is not the ideal of the other races which to-day inhabit the land our fathers subdued for Christian civilisation. Our ideal is the formation here, in this corner of the earth, watered by the blood of our heroes, of a nation which shall perform on this continent the part France has played so long in Europe. Our aspiration is to found a nation which, socially, shall profess the Catholic faith and speak the French language. That is not, and cannot be, the aspiration of the other races. To say, then, that all the groups which constitute the Confederation are animated by one and the same aspiration, is to utter a sounding phrase without political or historical meaning. For us the present form of government is not and cannot be, the last word of our national existence. It is merely a road towards the goal which we have in view, that is all. Let us never lose sight of our own national destiny. Rather let us constantly pre are ourselves to fulfil it worthily at the hour decreed by Providence, which circumstances shall reveal to us. Our whole history proves that it is not to be a vain dream, a mere Utopia, but the end which the God of nations has marked out for us. We have not been snatched from death a score of times; we have not multiplied with a rapidity truly prodigious; we have not wrought harvests of resistance and of peaceful conquest in the eastern townships and in the border counties of Ontario; we have not absorbed many of the English and Scotch settlements planted among us in order to break up our homogenity; we have not put forth all these efforts, and seen them crowned with success, to go and perish miserably in any all-Canadian arrangement."
I could multiply quotations of this kind; but perhaps La Presse is a paper which may be said to speak with more authority, and I may give a quotation from it. I find, however, that I have not a quotation from that paper here. My hon. friend will perhaps remember it sneeringly alluded to the fact that the people were astonished at his observation, they could not accept it, they could not credit it, and instead of cheering it they merely said "hear, hear," being induced to do so by astonishment, but such was not the views or the policy of the French Canadian people. Now I have endeavored to show to the House so far, that this is not merely a sentimental matter but that it is a matter of practical politics and a matter which must be dealt with. I have endeavored to show that as early as the years 1837—38 it was then recognised as being the great cause of trouble in the Province of Quebec. I think I have also successfully shown (I do not think, in fact, I needed to have shown it, because it is familiar to us all) that these difficulties exist at present, and that now that the French race, or those who speak the French language, to be more accurate, have attained to a considerable numerical strength, their ambition is rising in proportion, and the difficulties which ought to have been foreseen long ago are now upon us and must be dealt with, at all events, as far as our new Territories are concerned, and that we must not allow the same difficulties to arise in that part of the Dominion. But if I have given the views of those within the Dominion, let me draw attention also to the views which are also entertained on this question outside of the Dominion by impartial spectators. I am not going to read from any journals that are hostile to the French Canadians, because I know that my quoting them as authority would produce no effect upon those whom I am very anxious indeed should very seriously consider this question. There ought to be no such differences between the English and French Canadian members of this House. There ought to be no differences on the subject between those who come from the Province of Quebec and speak in the French language, their mother tongue, and those who come from the other Provinces of the Dominion, and who speak the English language. If, in truth and fact it is in the interests of this Dominion, that there should be one race, one nationality and one national life, it is the duty of all of us to strive to bring about that result. I am now about to quote from a paper, from a Catholic journal, which was introduced to this House last Session by my hon. friend the Minister of Justice. I confess I did not hear of it before, but no doubt it has now become 49 [JANUARY 22, 1890.] 50 historical. It is called The Month. Dealing with this difficulty with the French language in Canada in the year 1885, the writer speaks as follows:—
"While freely admitting that the French Canadian is behind his English-speaking neighbor not only in farming, but in commerce, trade and all kindred branches, we must not take for granted everything that this same English-speaking neighbor says of him. One of the most striking and curious things in the social life of Lower Canada is the latent hate which the French and English-speaking races have for each other. It is a sad thing to say, but truth requires that it should be said, that English-speaking people, no matter whether they are English Irish or Scotch, have rarely a good word for their French neighbors; and it is still sadder and more unaccountable that of all those English-speaking people, the Irish are those between whom and the French there seems to be the least rapport and the greatest enmity.
An hon. MEMBER. Do you believe that?
Mr. McCARTHY. This journal was accepted as a good authority last Session. I am reading from the same authority as my hon. friend the Minister of Justice quoted last Session.
Sir JOHN A. MACDONALD. That was twelve months ago.
Mr. McCARTHY. The article goes on to say:
"If the French Canadians were not Catholics, if they were not the people of all others whom the Irish are supposed to love, one might not be so puzzled over this social enigma."
It goes on to give reasons or to account in some way for this cause of the hatred being greater between the Irish and the French, than between the French and any other nationality, and says:
"The preservation of the French language in Canada seems to be the most absorbing subiect at present, not only in that country, but in France, and public opinion in both countries seems somewhat divided about it. All Frenchmen, and most Canadians of French extraction, are as one as to the absolute necessity of preserving their language in America; but how is it to be done? The best way would, of course be to annex Canada to France; but that is not to be thought of. One thing is certain, and that is that in spite of the wonderful tenacity with which the French have stuck to their language in Canada, there are signs that it is losing ground."
Sir JOHN A. MACDONALD. I do not see that.
Mr. MCCARTHY. Neither do I; but that is the opinion of this writer. Finally, the writer in The Month says:
"It would appear as if the French Government has become fully aware that the French language in Canada is in danger, and that steps have been taken to bring about a more cordial and general intercourse between the French-speaking people on both sides of the Atlantic. This can done in many ways, but in no way more effectually than by close commercial relations."
In another article it gives my hon. friend the Secretary of State credit for the endeavor he has made to bring about that good feeling between France and the people of the Province of Quebec, which good feeling up to that time was not to be discovered. I have read these extracts from The Month, which I thought would be accepted as undoubted authority, having been quoted before in this House by the Minister of Justice, and I now propose to read from the Catholic World, published in New York, and from its publication in the year 1885 I make the following extracts:—
"The growing power and importance of the French in Canada is the cause of the annexation feeling now taking root in Ontario and Nova Scotia. It is felt by all sections of Canadians that the connection with England must be severed, but the dread the French entertain towards annexation and the English towards independence prevents the sundering of the fragile tie."
An hon. MEMBER. You don't believe that.
Mr. McCARTHY. I hear my hon. friend say that I do not believe that. Sir, I have heard that argued over and over again, and it is not very long ago since I heard a gentleman, who was a distinguished member of this House, say it was the only remedy for the existing condition of things—that gentleman said that the only remedy was to swamp my hon. friends from the Province of Quebec in the great American Confederacy.
Mr. LAURIER. Are you then an Annexationist?
Mr. McCARTHY. Not by any means. I do not at all concur in that, Mr. Speaker. I think that within the lines of the Constitution and in this Dominion of Canada this question can, will and must be settled, but I think that if that question is not settled considerable difficulties, as I have said, must arise.
Mr. MILLS (Bothwell). It is settled.
Mr. McCARTHY. The article in the Catholic World, to which I refer, commences by this:
"We are Englishmen speaking the French language," said the late Sir George Cartier, the colleague and close personal friend of Sir John A. Macdonald."
And the article goes on to explain that the result of that statement made by that distinguished Canadian statesman was:
"Before this he was the undisputed leader of the French Canadian element in Canada; three years later he was unmercifully beaten at the polls for Montreal East by an obscure young lawyer by the name of Jetté. The crushing defeat was the French Canadlan way of punishing Sir George for his ultra-loyal speech and the misrepresentation it embodied. Not that French Canadians are not well affected to the Empire as things go; only it must be understood they are well affected as French Canadians."
I would just ask the House to allow me to trouble them with another extract.
Mr. BERGERON. Is it another religious book?
Mr. McCARTHY. I will not further trouble the House with quotations. I have endeavored at all events to make good my statements, that both from within and from without the general opinion prevails that this question has come to the point where it is likely to cause further differences, as it has already caused differences in the Dominion. I come back now, Sir, to the North-West Territories. I am not attempting here, and hon. gentlemen know that, at all events in this form of motion, I could not attempt in any way to interfere with any rights under the British North America Act which are guaranteed to the French Canadians of the Province of Quebec, and to the French Canadians in this Parliament. I am treating, Sir, of what this Parliament is competent to deal with. I am treating of the question of the dual language of the North-West Territories. I hold in my hand, though it has not been yet presented to the House, a petition from the Legislative Assembly of the North-West Territories. Where that petition is I cannot say: whether it is in the hands of the Government, whether it is to be brought before the House, whether it has been sent to Mr. Speaker, or where the petition is I cannot say; but, that the Legislative Assembly of the North-West Territories did, at their last session discuss this question and pass the following resolution on the subject, by what was practically 51 [COMMONS] 52 an unanimous vote, there can be no doubt. That petition of the Legislative Assembly of the North- West is as follows:—
"Address to the Honorable the House of Commons of Canada, in Parliament Assembled, adopted by the Legislative Assembly of the North-West Territories, on Monday, 28th October, 1889.
"The petition of the Legislative Assembly of the North-West Territories in Session assembled, humbly sheweth:—
"That, whereas by Section one hundred and ten of 'The North-West Territories Act' it is enacted that 'Either the English or the French language may be used by any person in the debates of the Legislative Assembly of the Territories and in the proceedings before the Courts; and both these languages shall be used in the records and journals of the Assembly, and all Ordinances made under this Act shall be printed in both these languages.'
"And, whereas this Assembly is of the opinion that the sentiment of the people of the North-West Territories is against the continuance of the section recited, on the grounds that the needs of the Territories do not demand the official recognition of a dual language in the North- West or the expenditure necessitated by the same.
"And, whereas this Assembly is also of the opinion that sound pubhc policy demands the discontinuance of two official languages in the North-West;
"Wherefore your petitioners humbly pray:
"That your Honorable House may be pleased to pass an Act repealing said section one hundred and ten of said Act.  
"And as in duty bound your petitioners will ever pray."
Not only, Sir, was this petition thus with almost practical unanimity resolved upon, but I am informed, and I believe the fact to be, although I have not examined it, that every newspaper published in the North-West has declared in favor of the abolition of the dual languages—every paper which has referred to the subject, I mean. One distinguished paper, the Regina Leader, I believe, has not yet thought it a subject worthy of notice; but almost every other paper has pronounced in favor of abolition. So that we have practically the unanimous opinion of the people of that territory. Now, are we going to perpetuate this system of things? Are we going to permit it to grow into what might be called a vested right, so that by-and-bye a French Canadian can urge, and with some degree of truth, "I have left my own home in the Province of Quebec and have gone and settled in the North-West Territories, relying on the faith of an Act of Parliament by which it was said I should be allowed to have my language." Is it, or is it not, a matter which we ought to deal with, and deal with promptly? Sir, I have nothing further to add on the general question. I will only say, in conclusion, that while I have thought it right at this early stage to make a statement of the reasons which have actuated the course I am taking, I desire here, as I have done elsewhere, to disclaim any feeling of hostility of any kind against the French Canadian race or their representatives in this House. I desire to say that I have no such feeling.
Mr. BERGERON. Thank you.
Mr. MCCARTHY. My only desire is to promote the welfare of us all, and I think our truest interest will be found in trying to create and build up in this country one race with one national life, and with a language common to us all.
Mr. LARIVIERE. (Translation) I have listened to, with more curiosity than interest, Mr. Speaker, the speech which has just been made by the hon. member for Simcoe (Mr. McCarthy). I must con fess that I have been astonished, and that in nuo slight degree, at seeing an Ontario member arrogate to himself the right of coming here, into this House, and asking for amendments to the Act erecting the North-West Territories. It is thought good to make an attack upon a right which is very dear to us, to all of us French Canadians — a right which we possess under the British made constitution which governs us. And what astonishes us still more, connected with the means employed to-day, is that they begin by attacking a handful of Métis scattered throughout the North- West Territories, with the object of crushing them out. I think this is a cowardly act, an act of cowardice which we must oppose with all our powers. To what end is all this exertion made? Why— if sincerity exists,—if this French language ought no longer to be spoken in Canada,—why do they not attack its use throughout the whole Dominion of Canada; why do they not endeavor to prohibit its use universally, instead of proceeding to attack, as I have just said, a handful of French Canadians, away off yonder, who cannot defend themselves; but who count upon us to be their defenders? I do not intend, Mr. Speaker, to follow the hon. member throughout the speech which he has just delivered; I shall only animadvert upon certain passages. He stated, among other things, that the language of a people is the foundation of its nationality. I ask myself, if this idea is correct, how does it happen that in the Islands of Jersey and Guernsey, which have been English possessions for more than two hundred years, they have preserved the French language,—that the French language only is spoken,—and that that language is the only one recognised officially? How comes it that in the Island of Saint Lucie and the other islands in the Antilles which happen to be British possessions, the French language is spoken? Is this merely a privilege which the peoples of these places have arrogated to themselves; or is it not rather a privilege granted by the British Crown, by the laws, and by the constitution of these countries that the mother tongue of the inhabitants is allowed them. So that the power which we possess, we French Canadians, of using our mother tongue is no unprecedented concession; it is not a right possessed exclusively by the French Canadian subject, but it is, a right which belongs to subjects in other colonies of the Empire. The hon. member has observed that it is only in Switzerland where the use of two languages is permitted. I think that if he had studied history he would have found that in other countries likewise the use of two distinct and different languages is sanctioned. In Belgium, among others, two languages are allowed; French is the official language, even though the public documents and papers are printed and published in Flemish. So that Canada forms no peculiar exception. The strongest position of the hon. member for Simcoe rests upon the celebrated report of Lord Durham, or supposed to be that of Lord Durham. All my fellow countrymen know what. this report is worth. It was not pro ared with the object of favoring the population of this country; it was not drafted in the interests of those who then dwelt in Lower Canada; but it was projected with the aim of Anglicising and of being able to persecute the population which then dwelt in the land, to the benefit of the immigration which had come out to possess it. Under such circum 53 [JANUARY 22, 1890.] 54 stances is it allowable to make use of this report in order to support the attempt which they are at this moment making adversely to our interests? Those who take advantage to-day of this report are worthy successors of him who prepared it. I must here remark, Mr. Speaker, that there exists a false impression about the history of this country. They wish to treat us as if we were a conquered people, whereas Canada was not conquered but was ceded to England under the terms of a treaty. In this treaty it is provided that our religion, our laws, and our customs as they existed at the time, should be protected, and I ask myself whether it cannot be affirmed to-day, that within these conditions and terms is included the conservation of our mother tongue, which we spoke at that time and which we still speak. From such reasoning it results that when the hon. member for Simcoe states that there was no such guarantee in the treaty,—that is to say the guarantee of the use of our language,—I can tell him his statement is false. The gravest insult that can be offered to us in the course of this discussion, which has hardly yet opened in this House; is that men should wish to have our enemies believe that because we do not use the English language habitually we are not loyal subjects of Her Majesty. They attack us on this line when taxing us with disloyalty. Well, when we see what our ancestors did when the time had come to defend the frontier, can it not be fairly said that they showed themselves quite as loyal if not more loyal than our fellow subjects of British origin? Can it be that people have forgotten the celebrated battles which we fought against our powerful neighbors the Americans? And if Canada still remains a British possession, to whom does England owe its retention if not to the French—but still loyal—population of the Province of Quebec. No, Mr. Speaker, in the present state of affairs they have thought it expedient to endeavor to exite prejudices in order perhaps to avenge the defeat which they suffered last year in another matter; but on this question, as on every other where our laws and our religion are attacked, I believe that we shall remain unmoved; and more particularly, that we shall defend in this House, as is but our duty, against the attacks this day attempted to be made against them, the few men of our own race who are scattered throughout the North-West country.
Sir JOHN A. MACDONALD. The Bill introduced is in terms of very great importance, and of course we can weigh it with reference to its effect on the North-West. But the line of argument my hon. friend has taken raises questions of such a nature, his whole line of argument is of such a kind, as to involve most serious and grave questions —so grave that I think we must take full time to consider what his arguments are, what they tend to, in what direction they lead, and what consequences may follow if the measure is persisted in. I, therefore, Sir, would hope that the discussion would end here—that the Bill should be allowed to be read the first time, and that after we have an opportunity of reading the carefully prepared speech of my hon. friend, we may, on the second reading, have an opportunity of discussing this important, this very grave question in all its bearings.
Mr. CHAPLEAU. May I be allowed, not to enter into a discussion of this question, but—as my hon. friend from Simcoe has quoted the authority of a great name, a great statesman and writer —only to cite one authority which I suppose will be accepted by himself and the whole House, as it has already been accepted by the whole country. A great statesman, at the time of the Union, wrote these words which have never been forgotten in this country:
"I must, moreover, confess that I for one am deeply convinced of the impolicy of all such attempts to denationalise the French. Generally speaking they produce the opposite effect from that intended, causing the flame of national prejudice and animosity to burn more fiercely. But suppose them to be successful, what would be the result? You may perhaps Americanise, but, depend upon it, by methods of this description you will never Anglicise the French inhabitants of the Province. Let them feel on the other hand, that their religion, their habits, their prepossessions, their prejudices if you will, are more considered and respected here than in other portions of this vast continent, who will venture to say that the last hand which waves the British flag on American ground may not be that of a French Canadian."
These words were those of the noble Lord Elgin, and I ask my hon. friend to read them and to meditate upon them.
Mr. McCARTHY. I have read them.
Mr. LAURIER. I did not understand my hon. friend from Simcoe, in his opening remarks, to say that he expected that this question would be debated at this stage of his Bill. I understood, on the contrary, that he expected that it would be debated, as is usual in this House, only on the second reading. This is our customary practice, and, therefore, perhaps, the hon. gentleman will permit me to tell him that it would have been preferable if he had not introduced in his remarks a good deal of controversial matter, which is quite debatable, no matter what stand is taken on the Bill. The hon. gentleman must allow that a man may be in favor of his Bill, and not agree with a good deal that he has said. For my own part, Sir, I do not propose at this stage to express an opinion on the Bill which he has presented. I reserve that for the second reading. I propose to follow in this instance the very safe practice which has always been followed in this House, of not expressing an opinion on a Bill, even if the tenor of it be well known in advance, until it has been placed in the hands of all members, and until they have read it and can form a mature judgment upon it. There is a good deal that I would personally take exception to in the hon. gentleman's remarks. I will not do so to-day; but the hon. gentleman will permit me to give him a piece of information as to which he appears to be in obscurity. He wants to know what was the cause that the Liberal candidate was defeated in the County of Richelieu. So far as my information goes, I have always understood that the cause was the bank notes of the defunct Mechanics Bank.
Mr. McCARTHY. May I be permitted, Mr. Speaker, to say that I am sorry if I have introduced what my hon. friend calls controversial matter. I deliberately adopted the course I have taken in making my statement, which I endeavored to make as impartial and fair as possible, on the introduction of the Bill. I understood it to be the English practice, and I think it is the fair practice. I have made my statement now and hon. gentlemen have an opportunity of considering it before the second reading, and then I shall have an oppor 55 [COMMONS] 56 tunity of defending my position in answer to the objections that may then be made.  
Motion agreed to, and Bill read the first time.


Mr. MARSHALL asked, Is it the intention of the Government at the present time to increase the duty on mess pork or meat of any kind coming into Canada?
Mr. FOSTER. This is. a question which it would be inadvisable to answer at the present time, as it is in regard to tariff matters.


Mr. PERRY asked, Have the Government appointed an Inspector of Fisheries for Prince   Edward Island in the stead of Col. John H. Duvar? If yes, who is he? What is the date of the appointment? and at what salary?
Mr. TUPPER. Mr. Edward Hackett was appointed, on the 1st July last, Inspector of Fisheries for Prince Edward Island, at a salary of $800 per annum.


Mr. CAMPBELL asked, How many barrels of flour have been entered for consumption in Canada during the six months ending on 31st December last, with amount of duty paid on the same? Also, how many bushels of wheat were entered during the same time for consumption, and amount of duty paid on same? Also, number of barrels of cornmeal entered for consumption during the same period, and amount of duty collected on same?
Mr. BOWELL. The number of barrels of flour entered for consumption in Canada during the six months ending on the 31st December last, was 108,408 barrels, and the duty collected on the same was $54,204. Those figures, however, do not include the return from British Columbia for the three months ending the 3lst December last, for the reason that they have not yet been received. The returns showing the different descriptions of grain are only received quarterly, and, as a number of the ports have not yet forwarded their reports for the last two quarters, answers to the last two questions cannot be accurately given now.


Mr. CAMPBELL asked, Whether it is the intention of the Government to complete the work of removing the bar at the mouth of the River Thames, in the County of Kent, Ontario, as soon as the weather will permit in the spring?
Sir HECTOR LANGEVIN. The Government have not as yet considered this question.


Mr. LANGELIER (Quebec) moved for:
Copies of all correspondence between the Government and the Canadian Pacific Railway Company, or between the Government and the Board of Trade of Quebec, or other public bodies or persons, as well as all other documents, respecting the debentures of the North Shore Railway Company.
He said: Every hon. member of this House knows that in the year 1875, the Government of the Pro vince of Quebec undertook the construction of a railway from Quebec to Ottawa, which was then called the Quebec, Montreal, Ottawa and Occidental Railway. That railway was completed in 1879. In 1880, the Government of the Province took possession of the road, and undertook the management of the same. In 1882, when the Hon. the Secretary of State was Prime Minister of the Province of Quebec, the railway in question was sold—one portion, that between Ottawa and Montreal, to the Canadian Pacific Railway Company, and the other section, that between St. Martin's Junction, in the County of Laval, and the city of Quebec, to a company which was constituted by the same Act, which authorised the sale of the railway. By that Act, the company, which was known as the North Shore Railway Company, was empowered to issue debentures at the rate of $25,000 per mile over the whole length of the railway. Acting on the powers contained in that Act, the North Shore Railway Company issued debentures to the amount of about one and three quarter millions, in round numbers. I do not pretend to give the exact figures, but that was about he amount. I understand that a portion of these debentures was handed over to the Government of Quebec as collateral security for the obligation entered into by the company with the said Government of Quebec for the payment of the price of the railway. As I understand, half a million was paid cash, but the rest, three millions and a-half, is still due to the Government of Quebec. Of the total amount of debentures issued some $1,108,000 was given as collateral security by the company to the Bank of Montreal. At the time of the sale of the railway to the North Shore Railway Company, a great deal of opposition was shown to the scheme of the Government, not only by the members of the then Opposition, but also by a great many supporters of the Government of which my hon. friend the Secretary of State was then the head. That opposition from his own friends was stopped, in a large measure, by the. representations which were made—that that was the only way to prevent the railway from going into the hands of the Grand Trunk Railway Company. That sale took place in 1882, and not later, I think, than February, 1883, the same railway was sold to the Grand Trunk Railway Company. I do not mean to say that the line of the railway was sold, but an agreement was entered into by the North Shore Railway Company, which was then represented by the late Senator Senecal, and the Grand Trunk Railway Company, by which the stock of the former company was transferred to certain parties representing the interest of the Grand Trunk ailway Company. The Grand Trunk Railway Company then took possession of the railway, and what was the result? The city of Quebec had subscribed a large sum, a much larger sum than it could relatively afford, if we consider the needs of the city of Quebec. That subscription amounted to $1,000,000. In order to help the construction of the North Shore Railway the city of Quebec made this immense sacrifice, so as to secure a rival line between that city and Montreal. After the line was sold to the Grand Trunk Railway, that rivalry for which the city of Quebec had paid so much ceased altogether to exist. Not only that rivalry ceased to exist, but an arrangement was entered into by the Grand Trunk Railway and the[...]


Canada. House of Commons Debates, 1875-1949. Provided by the Library of Parliament.



Selection of input documents and completion of metadata: Isabelle Carré-Hudson.

Personnes participantes: