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Title: The Canadian Portrait Gallery: Volume II
Author: Dent, John Charles (1841-1888)
Photographer: Notman, William (1826-1891)
Photographer: Parks, J. G. (fl. ca. 1880)
Photographer: Topley, William James (1845-1930)
Date of first publication: 1880
Edition used as base for this ebook: Toronto: John B. Magurn, 1880 [first edition]
Date first posted: 16 July 2010
Date last updated: 16 July 2010
Project Gutenberg Canada ebook #574

This ebook was produced by: Marcia Brooks, Donna M. Ritchey, Carlo Traverso & the Online Distributed Proofreading Team at http://www.pgdpcanada.net

This file was produced from images generously made available by the Internet Archive/Canadian Libraries








5 Jordan Street, Toronto.

Entered according to Act of Parliament of Canada, in the year Eighteen Hundred and Eighty,
by John B. Magurn, in the office of the Minister of Agriculture.

Transcriber's Note: Footnotes and Errata are placed at the end of this file.


[A Preface and an Alphabetical Index will be given at the close of the last volume.]
The Most Rev. John Medley, D.D. 1
The Hon. George Brown 3
The Hon. William Johnston Ritchie 25
The Right Hon. The Earl of Durham 27
The Hon. Sir Hugh Allan 38
The Rev. Alexander Burns, D.D., LL.D. 41
William Lyon Mackenzie 44
Thomas Louis Connolly 54
Anna Jameson 57
The Rev. D. H. McVicar, LL.D. 67
The Hon. William Henry Draper 70
The Hon. Sir Charles Tupper 73
Montcalm 79
The Hon. Oliver Mowat 86
The Rev. George Douglas, LL.D. 94
Lord Elgin 97
The Rev. Robert Alexander Fyfe, D.D. 104
Marshall Spring Bidwell 108
The Hon. Joseph Howe 115
The Hon. Francois George Baby 131
John William Dawson, M.A., LL.D., &c. 133
The Hon. Adam Crooks 139
Tecumseh 144
The Hon. George Anthony Walkem 158
The Right Rev. Arthur Sweatman, D.D. 161
The Hon. Hector Louis Langevin 164
The Rev. Albert Carman, D.D. 167
Sir Francis Bond Head 169
The Hon. Samuel Henry Strong 179
The Hon. Sir Alexander Tilloch Galt 181
The Rev. Michael Stafford 187
The Rev. William Caven, D.D. 190
The Hon. Luther Hamilton Holton 193
The Hon. Louis Joseph Papineau 199
The Hon. William Alexander Henry 205
Lord Sydenham 207
The Right Rev. Isaac Hellmuth, D.D., D.C.L. 213
The Hon. Arthur Sturgis Hardy 215
The Hon. Sir Albert James Smith 218
The Rev. Edward Hartley Dewart, D.D. 221

The Most Rev. John Medley, D.D., signed as John Fredericton
John Medley, signed as John Fredericton
Lith. by Rolph Smith Ltd Toronto from Photo by W. J. Topley, Ottawa

[Pg 1]




The Metropolitan of Canada is the oldest Bishop in British North America, and, with one exception, the oldest Colonial Bishop now living. He is an Englishman by birth and education, and was born on the 19th of December, 1804. He was educated principally at Wadham College, Oxford, where he early exhibited great fondness for classics and polite literature. He entered at Wadham in 1823, taking his degree in honours (second class) in 1826, and becoming an M.A. in 1830. In 1828 he was made a deacon, and in the following year he was ordained a priest. For three years he filled a curacy in a small town in Devonshire, and from 1831 to 1838 officiated as minister of St. John's Chapel, in Truro, Cornwall. In the last named year he became Vicar of St. Thomas, Exeter—a position which he held until 1845. Three years before this time he had been made Prebendary of Exeter Cathedral. In 1845 the Diocese of Fredericton, in New Brunswick, was formed, and on the nomination of the Archbishop of Canterbury, John Medley was appointed to that See, and consecrated its first Bishop, on the 4th of May. The consecration took place at Lambeth Palace. The new Bishop sailed immediately for the new world, and on the 11th of June was inducted in the parish church. The corner stone of Fredericton Cathedral was laid by the Bishop on the 15th of October following. In 1853 the edifice was consecrated, Bishop Mountain of Quebec taking an important part in the ceremony.

At the Synod of 1879 the Bishops of Canada elected Bishop Medley as their Metropolitan. It was thought that this election would lead to some controversy, but contrary to general expectation there was none. In making the choice, the principle was admitted, at the outset, that the claim of seniority was to prevail. The election was, and in future will be, a mere formality. It is said that the title of Metropolitan, and the privileges which it confers, will no longer be attached to a See, but will be affixed to a personality.

Dr. Medley is incapable of the eloquence of a Punshon or a Chapin, but his preaching is higher in tone, and more polished in style. He never carries enthusiasm into the pulpit, but his discourses are rich in individuality, in learning, and in logic. His sentences are skilfully turned, and full of graceful imagery and fine culture; but his sermons, as a rule, are of too high a class to make a deep impression on an audience which has not, like his own parishioners, grown up with him, and learned to follow him throughout the peculiar avenues of his thought. Personally, Dr. Medley is highly esteemed and loved, while the elevated character of his life-work, and the great industry with which he has administered the affairs of his diocese—a see which includes the entire Province of New Brunswick—[Pg 2]for upwards of thirty-five years, has won the highest praise, alike from Churchmen and Christians of other denominations. He has a keen appreciation of humour. A good story is told of him, which illustrates this quality. Shortly after the St. John fire, in 1877, his Lordship preached a sermon on the calamitous event, in the commercial capital of the Province. Of course public expectation stood high, and a discourse of great power was naturally looked for. The audience was very large, and the sermon, which was most effective and suggestive, fully justified the popular expectation. The daily papers sent representatives to report the sermon in full. One of these called on his Lordship before the exercises in the church began, and obtained from him a half-reluctant promise that the manuscript of the sermon should be given to him immediately after the close of the service. The reporter, elated at his good fortune, seated himself in a pew, and watched with eager interest the efforts which his rivals were making during the delivery of the sermon. At the close, he stepped into the private room of the Bishop to claim fulfilment of the latter's promise. The worthy prelate, without a smile, handed a single sheet of paper to the discomfited young man, on which were inscribed the notes of the discourse, in a system of shorthand invented by the Bishop himself. The reporter turned away, a sadder but a wiser man, and repairing to the sanctum, spent the greater part of the night and a portion of the next morning in trying, with the aid of his memory, to decipher the curious hieroglyphics. By dint of very hard work he managed to write out a report of about a third of a column in length.

The Metropolitan is an author of repute. His published writings embrace several volumes of sermons, tracts, etc., besides a small book of Episcopal Forms for Church Government, several lectures, an Address to Sunday School Teachers, numerous charges to the clergy, and (this year) a fine scholarly work on the Book of Job, with a new translation, notes, and an introduction. English and Canadian critics have spoken in high terms of this translation. The notes are said to exhibit wide scholarship and great research. The Bishop, now in his 76th year, continues to pursue his avocations with his usual spirit and vigour, his age apparently offering no perceptible barrier to the full play of his faculties.

George Brown
George Brown

Lith. by Rolph Smith Ltd Toronto from Photo by Notman & Fraser

[Pg 3]



Mr. Brown's name has long been one of the most conspicuous in our politics, and it is safe to say that no man now living has made a more distinct or abiding mark upon the Canadian history of his time. Although a good many years have elapsed since his retirement, in a sense, from active participation in public life, there is no man whose character and principles have been more frequently discussed down to the present hour; and there is certainly no man now living in Canada as to whom a wider divergence of sentiment has prevailed. It is proverbially difficult to do full justice to a biography during the lifetime of the subject of it, and the interval which has elapsed since Mr. Brown's lamented death is as yet too short to render the difficulty materially less. The time for reviewing his career with historic discrimination or comprehensiveness of detail is yet distant. The battles in which he took a foremost part were so fiercely contested, and the issues at stake were so momentous, that it is well nigh impossible, even for the most impartially-minded writer, to review them without taking either one side or the other. To persons familiar with the history of this country during the last thirty-five years, it will seem like a truism to say that Mr. Brown was a man of great energy, of indomitable will, of very distinctly pronounced opinions, and of very marked individuality character generally. His opponents—and even some of those who were not his opponents—have been wont to say of him that he was overbearing and dictatorial, that he was firmly wedded to his own way, and that he had scant toleration for the opinions of those who differed from him. To these accusations, whether well or ill-founded, it is only fair to reply that Mr. Brown's opinions on important public questions were generally held, not only conscientiously, but with a deep-rootedness and intensity such as few men ever know. To the consideration of every public question which engaged his attention he brought a fervour and enthusiasm which had no affinity with the half-formed and lightly-held predilections of more shallow minds. When he had once passed judgment on a question, doubt as to the soundness of his conclusions was never permitted to intrude itself upon him. He had no conception of "possibilities beyond his own horizon," and not much faculty for receiving discipline at the hands of others. His convictions, right or wrong, were to him demonstrated propositions. They always found forcible expression, and did not always conduce to his popularity. They were often at variance with the prevalent sentiments of the community, and not seldom with the views of his own political adherents. Neither opposition on the part of his antagonists, nor remonstrance on the part of his friends, was ever found of sufficient weight to silence him when he felt that [Pg 4]he had anything of importance to say. He was always accustomed to deliver his message after his own fashion, and the fashion was sometimes one which cannot be held up to unqualified admiration. No man ever more completely fulfilled in his own person all the essential conditions of "a good hater." His denunciations of men to whom he was opposed, and of measures whereof he disapproved, were sometimes sweeping and unsparing. His advocacy of cherished opinions was vigorous and uncompromising. Such a man is tolerably certain to make warm friends and bitter foes. Mr. Brown was able to number among the public men of Canada a goodly array of both. As has already been intimated, the time has not yet arrived for a just and satisfactory analysis of his life's work. When such an analysis shall have been made, the verdict of history will follow. The purport of that verdict is not doubtful, though the process whereby it will be arrived at cannot yet be fully known. Here, it will be said, was a man who was possessed of genuine convictions. His ambition was high, and perhaps not always without alloy; but his statesmanship was a reality and not a sham, and he had always at heart the best interests of his country. He came to Canada as a young man, without friends or worldly wealth. By his energy and ability he speedily acquired an influence and a position which were second to those of none of his competitors. He spoke, wrote and fought for the people's rights with unwearying industry, irrepressible vigour, and dauntless courage. He took a prominent part in public life during many years, and there was no great reform of his time with which he was not honourably connected. If he was tenacious of his opinions, his opinions on public questions generally turned out to be sound. Though a strong and even violent party man, he could rise above party considerations, and join hands with the most uncompromising of his foes to bring about a scheme of government which bade fair to secure the country's lasting good. Such a man, whatever his shortcomings, was both a patriot and a statesman, and must fill a high and honourable place in the history of Canada. This, or something like this, we believe, will be the purport of the verdict which posterity will pass upon the personal and public career of the Honourable George Brown.

He was, as most of our readers know, a native of Scotland, and a son of the late Mr. Peter Brown. His mother was Miss Mackenzie, the only daughter of Mr. George Mackenzie, of "The Cottage," Stornoway, in the Island of Lewis. At the time of his son's birth, and for many years previously, Peter Brown was a resident of Edinburgh, where he was engaged in various building and mercantile operations. He was a man of high native intelligence, great force of character, and good social standing. He possessed a sound education, had read much, and was especially well versed in the constitutional and political history of Great Britain. He was well known and highly respected in Edinburgh society, and though not addicted to letters at this period of his life, he had many friends among the literary men of the Modern Athens. He was on intimate terms with Cockburn and Jeffrey; and, notwithstanding his Liberal politics, was personally acquainted with Sir Walter Scott, Professor Wilson, and John Gibson Lockhart. In addition to the members of his own family there are many persons still living in Canada who knew him well during the last twenty years of his life, and who cherish his memory with respect and affection. Both by descent and by predilection he was an avowed Liberal in politics, according to the tenets of Liberalism in those days, but was a zealous upholder of monarchy, and a prominent member of the Presbyterian Church.

His eldest son, the subject of this memoir, [Pg 5]was born in Edinburgh on the 29th of November, 1818, and at the time of his death was sixty-one years and five months old. In his early boyhood he attended the High School of his native city, but as his educational progress at that seat of learning was not satisfactory to himself, he was transferred, at his own request, to the Southern Academy of Edinburgh. The latter institution was at that time presided over by Dr. William Gunn, a capable teacher and a very worthy man. Under the instruction of this gentleman young George Brown made rapid progress, and was particularly distinguished for his proficiency in mathematics. During his last session at the Academy he stood high in all his classes, and won flattering encomiums from his tutor. At the closing examination he was chosen to declaim an exercise, and Dr. Gunn, in introducing him to the audience, made a remark the appositeness of which must strike every one who is acquainted with the young scholar's subsequent career. "This young gentleman," said the Doctor, "is not only endowed with high enthusiasm, but he possesses the faculty of creating enthusiasm in others." Many of his school-fellows at this establishment have since risen to high dignities, both at home and abroad. He was also for a short time a pupil at a private school at Musselburgh, where he had for a fellow-pupil the present Mr. Justice Galt. His father wished him to enter the University, but the project did not meet with the son's approval. His mind was practical, and he determined that his school should thereafter be the world at large. He began to take part in his father's business, and to interest himself to some extent in political and municipal affairs. The father early discerned the bent of his son's mind, and doubtless did much in those early days to mould his opinions. They were wont to hold long discussions on the topics of the day, sometimes seated by the domestic fireside, and sometimes in the course of long walks through the devious ways and picturesque suburbs of the northern capital. In the course of one of these peregrinations they encountered an elderly, venerable, and most benevolent-looking gentleman who was saluted by the father with ceremonious respect. After they had passed on, the son was informed that the old gentleman was no less distinguished a personage than the author of "Waverley."

The family-circle at home was a singularly happy and harmonious one, and for some years nothing occurred to disturb its felicity. In process of time, however, through the misconduct of an agent, Mr. Brown the elder became involved in pecuniary difficulties. After a long and fruitless endeavour to extricate himself he determined to emigrate to America, and in 1838 he carried out his determination. Accompanied by his eldest son, and leaving the rest of his family behind, until he should be able to provide a new home for them beyond the Atlantic, he sailed for New York. The father, though by no means insensible to his reverse of fortune, was far from being dispirited by it; and the son was possessed of a boundless energy and fertility of resource which were not likely to fail him under such circumstances. Both father and son soon found congenial employment. Ere-long the family were comfortably settled down in New York, and looking forward with hope and confidence to the future. Peter Brown's wide reading and his comprehensive knowledge of British politics stood him in good stead. He became a contributor to The Albion, a weekly newspaper published in New York in the interest of the English population. The Albion had then been in existence nearly twenty years, having been founded in 1822 by Dr. John S. Bartlett, British Consul at New York, who managed it successfully for more than a quarter of a century. It was the principal [Pg 6]medium whereby English ideas were disseminated through the United States, and had a political and social influence more than commensurate with its circulation, which was necessarily somewhat restricted. The proprietor of The Albion was glad to avail himself of the services of so well-informed a contributor as the elder Brown, who, in addition to his intimate acquaintance with English politics, was a ready and forcible writer, and a man whose opinions were of value. His articles at once attracted attention, and were eagerly read wherever the paper circulated. His style was clear, earnest and logical, and his views were liberal and enlightened without being ultra-radical. It was during his connection with The Albion that a very foolish book made its appearance at New York under the title of "The Glory and Shame of England." The author was Mr. C. Edwards Lester, an American gentleman who for some time filled the post of United States Consul at Genoa. It professed to give an account of the writer's own experiences during a hurried visit to Great Britain, and was conceived in a style and spirit which would have been malevolent if they had not been feeble and childish. It abounded with errors and false logic, and contained not a few assertions which, to any one conversant with British institutions and social life, were palpable misstatements of fact. It appeared in 1841, and, chiefly in consequence of its rabid republicanism and its denunciations of everything British, it attracted an attention altogether out of proportion to its intrinsic merits. Mr. Peter Brown, in emigrating from his native land, had by no means left his loyalty behind him, and he conceived it to be his duty as a British subject not to allow such a farrago of absurdities to remain unanswered. He wrote and published a reply to Mr. Lester's book under the title of "The Fame and Glory of England Vindicated." It went over the ground previously traversed by Mr. Lester chapter by chapter, and almost page by page. It embodied a formidable array of statistics, and pointed out numberless absurdities and inconsistencies. This work appeared in 1842 from the press of Messrs. Wiley & Putnam, of New York, and was at once eagerly read and discussed by a wide circle. The all but unanimous verdict was that Mr. Lester stood convicted of gross ignorance and unfairness, if not of wilful falsehood. Mr. Brown's nom de plume on the title-page was "Libertas," but the real authorship was no secret, and the effect of his book was to make his name widely known through the Northern States as a writer of much keenness and force. His contributions to The Albion were read with greater interest than before, and there can be no doubt that his writings did much to extend the circulation of that paper. His position, however, did not in all respects fulfil his aspirations. He was merely an employé on the editorial staff, and probably had to submit to a certain amount of editorial dictation. New York and the Northern States generally contained a large Scottish population, and Mr. Brown conceived the idea that a paper which should occupy the same position towards them that The Albion occupied with respect to the English would meet with a fair degree of support. This view was participated in by many of Mr. Brown's friends and acquaintances in and about New York, and erelong he took up the project in earnest. A canvass was set on foot, and a considerable subscription-list was obtained. In the month of December, 1842, the new venture made its appearance under the title of The British Chronicle, with Peter Brown as its editor, and with George Brown as the publisher and general business manager. As the organ of the Scottish population of the United States it was without a competitor, and even as a British organ it threatened serious [Pg 7]rivalry to The Albion. It discussed America and republican institutions with great freedom, and even with some severity, but it was always well written, and was regarded with respect even by the Americans themselves. As had been anticipated on its behalf, it obtained a fair share of support, but The Albion, which had been long established, had too firm a hold of the public to permit its young rival to achieve a remarkable success. The young publisher launched all his energy in the enterprise, and travelled over the greater part of New England and the neighbouring states, taking advertisements and subscribers, and making himself known to the class of persons to whom he chiefly looked for support. He had meanwhile begun to take an interest in the affairs of Canada, where the vigorous articles in his paper were already attracting some attention among the Scottish Presbyterians. In the spring of 1843 he determined to try what could be done in the way of extending the circulation of the Chronicle in this country, and came over with that end in view. Could he have foreseen the result of his visit; could he have foreseen that in less than ten years he would have become one of the best known and most influential of Canada's citizens, it is to be presumed that he would have come over with very high hopes. But he had not, and could not have, any such prescience. His ambition was of a much more modest character. He merely aspired to extend the circulation and influence of his father's paper. Upon his arrival in Toronto he presented himself to, and was well-received by, the Scottish Presbyterians. Young as he was—he was not yet twenty-five—his energy and force of character impressed all who came in contact with him. It was the period of the Disruption of the Scottish National Church. Both his father and himself had entered zealously into the dispute on the side of the Free Church. The adherents of that side in Canada felt the want of an organ which should espouse their interests in opposition to those of the Established Church of Scotland. This young man was evidently made of the precise kind of stuff they needed. Overtures were made to him to convert his paper into the organ of the Free Church Party. At this time there was no idea of removing the office of publication from New York to Canada, but it was intended that the Chronicle should circulate freely through this country, and definite promises of support were given. The proposal was deemed worthy of consideration by Mr. Brown, and was by him forwarded to New York for his father's approval. Meanwhile he continued his tour through Canada, and having received the stamp of endorsement from the Free Church Party he was everywhere well received by their adherents. Upon reaching Kingston, which was then the seat of Government, he received overtures which promised better things still. Having come into contact with Samuel Bealey Harrison, who then held the office of Provincial Secretary for Upper Canada in the Lafontaine-Baldwin Administration, the political situation of the country was discussed between the two with considerable freedom. It has been intimated that Mr. Brown had for some time previously taken a good deal of interest in Canadian affairs, and he was thus able to take an intelligent part in such a discussion. It is almost unnecessary to say that both his sympathies and his training had made him an advanced Liberal in politics. The temper of his mind was such that political controversy was grateful to him, and he possessed a natural aptitude for dealing with constitutional questions. His ready and firm grasp of the situation astonished Mr. Harrison not a little. That a young man who had been only a few weeks in the country, and who was merely the business agent of a New York newspaper, should enter with such zest and appreciation [Pg 8]into the issues of Canadian politics, and should take in the main points with such ready intelligence, seemed to the easy-going Provincial Secretary almost phenomenal. He was introduced to Mr. Baldwin, Mr. Francis Hincks, and other members of the Administration. This, it must be borne in mind, was in the early summer of 1843. Sir Charles Bagot had just been laid in the grave, and Sir Charles Metcalfe had been only about two months in this country. What course the latter would pursue was as yet an open question, as he had been remarkably reticent ever since his arrival; but he had begun to coquet with Sir Allan Macnab and other prominent supporters of the ultra-Conservative Party, and several members of the Administration—Robert Baldwin, Francis Hincks and S. B. Harrison among them—had already begun to anticipate some measure of the trouble which subsequently ensued. It seemed not unlikely that the whole question of Responsible Government would be opened afresh, and that the battle would have to be fought over again. As may readily be supposed, the Government were very willing to secure the support of an additional newspaper. Young Mr. Brown had made a decided impression upon the various members of the Administration, and had given them the idea that he would be a potent ally of any political cause to which he might attach himself. It does not appear that any definite negotiations were entered into, but the feasibility of removing the Chronicle to Canada was discussed, and when Mr. Brown left Kingston he must have felt that in the event of his taking up his abode in this country he could count upon a pretty strong support from the Government. The Government, however, might not long remain in power, and if it were ousted there were several prominent members of it who would probably accept offices which would permanently remove them from political life. Cogitating on these and a hundred other possibilities of the near future, Mr. Brown continued his tour through Canada, and made himself and his paper known to many influential people in Montreal and Quebec. In due course he reached his home in New York, whither various overtures from Toronto and Kingston had preceded him. The overtures had by this time become urgent, and had not been without effect on Mr. Brown the elder, who, however, saw a fair share of prosperity before him in the land of his adoption, and did not at first feel disposed to try the experiment of another removal. But George came home from Canada with strong representations. The country, he said, was young, and persons of ability and education were not numerous there. There was no position to which a man of energy and good character might not reasonably hope to attain, if his will were strong and his brain sound. New York, he said, offered a competence and nothing more; whereas Canada offered probable wealth and possible fame. The family, moreover, were all strongly British and anti-Republican in feeling, and as a mere matter of choice would much prefer to live under British laws, and among persons of British sympathies. The upshot was that the son got the best of the argument, and before the close of the summer the family had bidden adieu to the land of the stars and stripes, and were once more living under British dominion, at Toronto. The name of The British Chronicle was changed to that of The Banner, the first number of which made its appearance on the 18th of August, 1843. It was a weekly paper, as the Chronicle had been, and it was above all things the organ of the Free Church Party; but it was also strongly political, and supported the Administration, which in the course of the ensuing autumn entered on its memorable struggle with the Governor-General as to [Pg 9]the true meaning of Responsible Government. The nature of that struggle has already been sufficiently referred to in the sketch of the life of Robert Baldwin. Sir Charles made appointments without consulting his Council, and when remonstrated with by the members for so doing he declined either to confess that he was in the wrong or to promise that he would not repeat the offence in future. The Ministry resigned, and formed themselves into a powerful Opposition under the leadership of Mr. Baldwin in Upper Canada and Mr. Lafontaine in the Lower Province. To keep pace with this Opposition, and with Mr. Brown's own strong political views, The Banner was soon found to be an inadequate medium. The theological element in it was developed at the expense of all other matters whatever, and its arguments were chiefly addressed to the adherents of the Free Church. It was felt that there must be a paper which should be above all things political, and the recognized organ of the Reform Party. This truth, as the struggle with Sir Charles Metcalfe waxed fiercer and fiercer, became more and more apparent. A well-conducted organ of Reform had become a political necessity of the time. Mr. George Brown was applied to by the leading Reformers of the country, and the result of the application was the establishment of The Globe.

The first number of the Globe—a weekly, like its predecessor, the Banner—was issued on the 5th of March, 1844. As compared with the Daily Globe of to-day, it was a very insignificant-looking sheet, both in size and typographical appearance. The subscription price was four dollars per annum, and the edition printed was ludicrously small as compared with the present issue. Upon its first appearance it had five competitors in Toronto as a political journal. It went on gaining steadily in circulation and influence for many years. It is a great power in the land at the present day, but its rivals have all long since ceased to exist. For these results there is a perfectly good reason. It would be impossible to conceive of a more apposite illustration of the doctrine of the survival of the fittest. It was a foregone conclusion that Mr. Brown must be a successful man. He had now chosen a field where his tremendous energy could have full play; where every exercise of it could be made to conduce to a practical result, and where, as a consequence, his success was doubly assured. At its commencement, the Globe was the joint property of Peter and George Brown, but the latter was the directing spirit, and the one upon whom its supporters chiefly relied. It soon became apparent that the sheet would be no despicable factor in the struggle with Sir Charles Metcalfe, and the efforts of his supporters were put strenuously forward to crush it. But the man at the helm was not one to be crushed. He assailed the members of the once formidable but now practically moribund Family Compact, as they had never been assailed before, even by Robert Gourlay or William Lyon Mackenzie. The time when an obnoxious newspaper proprietor's type and presses could be battered and thrown into the bay with impunity was long since past; and as for bandying words with him, not even the most voluble member of the oligarchy would have cared to try such an experiment with George Brown in those days. He could always contrive to say three savage words where any of his opponents could find one. His vigorous articles began to produce an effect on all classes of society, and to stir up a feeling throughout the country that it was time to awaken out of sleep.

The ink was scarcely dry on the first number of the Globe ere Mr. George Brown was importuned to allow himself to be put in nomination for a seat in Parliament. Strange as it may seem, the proposal had no [Pg 10]charms for him at that date. His resolve, however, was the result of careful consideration, and his own innate good sense. He was poor, and had a way to make in the world for others besides himself. He had entered on his career as a journalist with high hopes, and believed that he had found his true vocation in life. To that career he determined to devote all his energy, until it should have produced him an abundant crop of fruit. He determined that the Globe should have an individuality. We think it will be admitted on all hands that he acted up to his determination and fully realized his expectations. The tone of the articles in the Globe during the first few years of its existence is not the tone of the Pall Mall Gazette or the Saturday Review. Its style is not one which we would advise any young journalist to take for his model, for it is a style which in most hands would be inefficacious as well as offensive. But it realized the ideal of its proprietor, who both in and out of print was very much given to calling a spade a spade, as the saying is. Without laying any claim to eloquence or splendour of composition, the articles in the Globe were full of a lusty uncouth vigour which found a road to the understandings of readers from one end of this land to the other. The writer generally had justice on his side, and knew it, and it must be confessed that he was very little given to tempering justice with mercy in those days. A man who made a statement, on any public matter, which was not strictly borne out by the facts, was tolerably certain to be told in the next number of the Globe that he lied. And he was told this, not by implication or innuendo, but plainly, straightforwardly, and in so many words; and he was fortunate if the words were not printed in capitals. The article, however, was pretty sure to be backed by unimpeachable evidence, and even by the bitterest of its opponents the Globe soon came to be recognized as a paper which generally told the truth, even if it had its own ungainly fashion of telling it. The paper, in the public mind, was identified with Mr. George Brown—and justly, for the Globe was Mr. George Brown. No paper, from the time of Roger L'Estrange's Observator downwards, ever more completely reflected the individuality of its editor. Mr. Peter Brown took a certain share in the business management, and also contributed occasional articles to its columns; but the bone and sinew, the body and soul, the heart's blood and nerves of the enterprise were evolved from the son. The latter made himself acquainted with the wants and sentiments of the people throughout this Upper Province as no man had ever done before. He circulated among them, rich and poor, gentle and simple; went to their houses, visited their schools, inspected their crops and farm improvements, and placed himself fully in accord with their inner lives. In an incredibly short space of time he knew every Reformer in the Province who was worth knowing—as well as a good many who were perhaps hardly worth the trouble. From Amherstburgh to Cornwall, from Goderich to Niagara, he hurried hither and thither, making acquaintances and increasing his influence and his knowledge of the country every day. In this way he was able to gauge, and not unfrequently to mould public opinion. The Globe was soon a household word everywhere in Upper Canada, and had a considerable circulation in the Lower Province. It was the recognized organ of the Reform Party, but was conducted with an independence and sometimes with an insubordination that knew no master, and would submit to no dictation. Its circulation and influence grew apace, and it soon (1846) became necessary to issue it twice a-week, though the subscription price remained unchanged. Three years later it began to be issued both tri-weekly and weekly, the price [Pg 11]of the tri-weekly edition being four dollars a year, and that of the weekly edition two dollars. Satisfactory as this success must have been, there was as yet no room for a daily, and even the tri-weekly was considered as being in advance of the times.

Long before this time Sir Charles Metcalfe had succumbed to the terrible disease which had so long held him in its grasp. He had resigned his post, returned to England, and died. The policy which he had striven to maintain, and which had found so redoubtable an opponent in Mr. Brown, did not totally disappear from the scene with the Governor-General. It cannot be said to have been effectually done away with until the elections of 1847, when it received its death-blow at the polls. To this result the Globe contributed more perhaps than any other factor whatever. Mr. Brown worked with an energy which, even for him, was tremendous, to secure a great triumph for the Liberal Party. He had established a western branch office of the Globe in London, and had taken personal charge of it during the busiest four months of the campaign. He had visited various constituencies in the interest of Reform candidates, and always with satisfactory results. His speeches from the hustings and on the stump were generally addressed to audiences where the Scottish element was predominant, and were always received with enthusiasm and tumultuous applause. His style of speaking was something altogether different from that to which Canadian electors had been accustomed. It possessed precisely the same qualities as his editorial articles. It was sinewy, tumultuous, impetuous, like the utterances of a man who must have his say out or perish in the attempt. It seldom failed to carry all before it, and he was often sent out as a forlorn hope. Dr. Gunn's characterization of his boyish effort at declamation at the Edinburgh Southern Academy would have applied with tenfold felicity to the speeches of his manhood. Any one who is old enough to have heard him deliver one of his election speeches does not need to be told that he was endowed with high enthusiasm, or that he possessed the faculty of begetting enthusiasm in his hearers. By the time this election campaign was at an end George Brown was better known throughout the Province than any man in public life in Upper Canada. He was pressed again and again by various constituencies to enter Parliament, but he was not yet ready to do so, and continued to devote himself to his paper. Upon the formation of the Baldwin-Lafontaine Administration, in 1848, after the arrival of Lord Elgin, the Globe became the mouthpiece of the Government.

In 1849 Mr. Brown's residencé in Toronto was attacked by the mob, in consequence of the agitation arising out of the passage of the Rebellion Losses Bill—a Bill which of course had received the support of the Globe. Mr. Baldwin was subjected to a similar indignity in Montreal, as also were most of the prominent members of the Administration, as well as the Governor-General himself. During the same year Mr. Brown took a prominent part as one of the Commissioners appointed to inquire into the abuses connected with the Provincial Penitentiary at Kingston. The inquiry lasted several months, and resulted in important reforms in the management of that institution.

Upon the opening of the Parliamentary session in May of the following year it soon began to be apparent that there was not perfect unanimity of sentiment among the supporters of the Government. The sources of discord were various, and the dissatisfaction of the members from the Lower Province did not arise from the same causes as those which produced the discontent in Upper Canada. Mr. Papineau's principal grievance arose from his desire to see the Legislative Council made elective. The [Pg 12]Separate School question was another bone of contention. In the Upper Province a large section of the Reform Party began to clamour vehemently for the secularization of the Clergy Reserves. The agitation on these subjects was largely fomented by Mr. Brown, who advocated them in the columns of the Globe with the vigour and determination which he had always been wont to display with respect to matters on which he had fully made up his mind. The feelings of the Government on the question of the Clergy Reserves have been sufficiently indicated in the sketch of Robert Baldwin. The members were not unanimous on the matter, and some of them were even disposed to abide by the settlement made under Lord Sydenham. Not one of them was in any unseemly haste to see secularization accomplished. Mr. Brown, notwithstanding his strong desire for secularization, continued to give the Government a general support in the Globe. Not so the Examiner, a paper which had been founded twelve years before in Toronto by Mr. Hincks as an exponent of Reform principles, and which was at this time under the editorial control of Mr. Charles Lindsey, and the business control of Mr. James Lesslie. The Examiner now advocated many sweeping measures of reform with which the Administration was not disposed to deal, and erelong arrayed itself in Opposition. It supported the policy of Dr. Rolph, Peter Perry, Malcolm Cameron—who had held office in the Administration, but had resigned—and the extreme wing of the Reform Party. The adherents of this Party were distinguished by the name of "Clear Grits," and in addition to the secularization of the Clergy Reserves, advocated universal suffrage, vote by ballot, free trade and direct taxation, the abolition of the Court of Chancery, and many other root-and-branch reforms. Some of these measures—notably that of secularization—received support from the Globe, but the root-and-branch policy as a whole was regarded by Mr. Brown as in advance of the times, and its supporters were denounced as "a little miserable clique of office-seeking, buncombe-talking cormorants, who met in a certain lawyer's office on King Street, and announced their intention to form a new Party on 'Clear Grit' principles." The Clear Grits were stigmatized by the Globe as republicans, and the war between the two Reform journals was fierce and bitter. The influence of the Examiner tended to weaken the hands of the Administration, which, however, was strong enough to retain a majority in the House until the close of the session. This division in the Reform camp soon became so wide that a reconstruction of the Cabinet became necessary. In 1851 both Mr. Baldwin and Mr. Lafontaine retired from public life, and Mr. Hincks became Premier. Other changes took place in the composition of the Ministry, and its policy underwent such modification that the support of the Globe was entirely withdrawn from it. Two of the most prominent "Clear Grits"—Dr. Rolph and Malcolm Cameron—accepted seats in the reconstructed Administration. From this time it not only received no further support from the Globe, but became the object of that journal's determined opposition.

At the general election which followed the reconstruction of the Cabinet, Mr. Brown for the first time offered himself as a candidate for a seat in Parliament. The constituency chosen by him was the county of Haldimand. His principal opponent was Mr. William Lyon Mackenzie, who had returned to Canada in 1850. There was a third candidate in the field in the person of the late Mr. Ranald McKinnon, who was a resident of the county; but his opposition alone would not have presented any formidable obstacle to Mr. Brown's success. There were reasons which, at that time, made Mr. Brown an unpopular candidate in a constituency [Pg 13]which contained a large Roman Catholic vote. His unpopularity was due to his having taken up what was in those days known as "the Broad Protestant Cry." In 1850 the Pope had put forth a bull creating, or professing to create, a Papal hierarchy in Great Britain, and had sent over Cardinal Wiseman to England from Rome, with the title of Archbishop of Westminster. The English Protestants resented the Pope's action with a vehemence and odium theologicum altogether out of proportion to the insignificance of the occasion. The resentment extended from the highest class of society to the lowest, and was not confined to any sect or creed. Addresses to Her Majesty poured in from all parts of the country, and never, perhaps, has the peace of mind of a large and intelligent community been so seriously disturbed about so trivial a matter. Lord John Russell put forth an indignant protest in the form of a letter addressed to the Bishop of Durham, which was copied and commented on throughout the Christian world. Lord Chancellor Campbell, at a public dinner given in London, called upon the Protestants of England to rouse themselves before it was too late, and to nip the insidious aggression of Rome in the bud. He quoted the line from the Duke of Gloster's speech to the Bishop of Winchester, in the First Part of King Henry VI.:

"Under my feet I'll stamp thy Cardinal's hat,"

and was cheered to the echo, both by Cabinet Ministers and city merchants. In the lower strata of society the talk was just as loud, but was not confined to talk alone, and took a more practical shape. At Stockport, in Lancashire, a number of Protestants got together and created almost a riot by belabouring a squad of Irish Catholics who were employed in public works there. The Irish Catholics of Birkenhead retaliated by attacking and burning the houses of Protestants. The Government of the day took up the matter, and introduced a Bill prohibiting the assumption of English territorial titles by Catholic prelates in England. The Bill was opposed with splendid eloquence and sound argument by Gladstone, Bright and Cobden, who took the broad ground that the prohibition aimed at would involve an undue interference with religious liberty. The feeling of the House, however, was such that even these giants of debate did not inspire respect on this question, and for once their speeches were listened to with ill-suppressed impatience. The Bill was passed by a tremendous majority, and at once received the royal assent. It stands unrepealed to this day; but, though both Cardinal Wiseman, Cardinal Manning, and others have repeatedly and fearlessly violated its provisions, no attempt has ever been made to enforce them.

The sentiment of ultra-Protestantism which rose to such a height of fervour in England was reflected with, if possible, increased fervour in Upper Canada. Mr. Brown caught the infection early, but for some time refrained from giving special prominence to the subject in the Globe. It was decreed, however, that if he continued to refrain, it should not be for want of an excellent opportunity for speaking out. Cardinal Wiseman, shortly after his arrival in England from Rome, and pending the debate on the Prohibition Bill, had put forth a pronunciamento in which the argument on the Roman Catholic side of the question was presented with much clearness and force. A copy of this document was handed to Mr. Brown by Colonel—afterwards the Honourable Sir—Etienne P. Taché, who held the office of Receiver-General in the Baldwin-Lafontaine Administration. Colonel Taché challenged Mr. Brown to publish it in the Globe, and jocularly expressed a doubt as to his having the courage and fairness to do so. Mr. Brown expressed his perfect willingness to publish [Pg 14]the pronunciamento, but not unreasonably stipulated that, in case of his doing so he should also publish a reply, to be written by himself. To this Sir Etienne assented, and accordingly both pronunciamento and reply appeared at full length in the columns of the Globe. Mr. Brown, in replying to the Cardinal's specious arguments, was necessarily compelled to present the matter from a Protestant point of view, and in a light which was far from being acceptable to Roman Catholics. The question was taken up by the entire press of the country, and was argued with great bitterness on both sides. Mr. Brown thus came to be regarded as the Canadian champion of Protestantism, and the avowed opponent of Roman Catholic doctrines. The stand so taken by him, as might have been expected, was made the most of by his opponents in Haldimand. He was represented to the Roman Catholic electors there as a man whose dominant passion was to circumscribe the power of the Pope, and who, if he could have his own way, would make it a criminal offence to perform or attend mass. These tactics answered their purpose, and Mr. Brown sustained a defeat. There were other constituencies open to him, however, and in the following December he was returned for the county of Kent, which then included the present county of Lambton.

Upon the opening of the session at Quebec in August, 1852, he took his seat in the House, and was thenceforward one of the most conspicuous figures in it. He had no sympathy with the Government, and criticised its measures with much asperity. It was alleged by the members of the Government that his hostility arose from the fact that he had not been asked to join them. It was also said that he was angry because the Globe had ceased to be the organ of the Administration, which proclaimed its policy through the medium of the North American, edited by Mr. William Macdougall. There can be no manner of doubt that the action of the Government towards Mr. Brown at this juncture, whatever may have been the motive of it, was a political blunder. His personal qualities, and the great vigour and ability by which the editorials of the Globe were marked, had made him in many important respects the most influential man in the country. No Government to which he was opposed could expect to run with perfect smoothness. It is simple matter of fact that some of the most prominent members of the Government were jealous of Mr. Brown. His rapid rise, and his steadily increasing influence, were viewed by them with ill-concealed apprehension, and this feeling was doubtless increased by Mr. Brown's own impetuosity and unconciliatoriness of spirit. He could not brook contradiction, and never admitted distrust of himself. His opposition was severe and merciless, and was constantly breaking out in unexpected places. His "broad Protestantism" was specially distasteful to the French Roman Catholic members in the Government, between whom and himself there was scarcely anything in common.

In the month of October, 1853, the Globe first made its appearance as a daily paper, and it thenceforward became a more important factor than ever in the moulding of public opinion., It was clamorous in its demands for the secularization of the Clergy Reserves, the abolition of Separate Schools, and Representation by Population. It inveighed strongly against monopolies of every kind, and availed itself of every occasion to embarrass the Government. Opportunities for creating such embarrassment were neither few nor far between. The Ministry were accused by the Globe of being altogether too dilatory in dealing with the Clergy Reserves, and other important questions on which the public felt strongly. As matter of fact the Ministry were willing enough to pass a measure of [Pg 15]secularization, but were unable to do so, owing to the delay of the Imperial Parliament in repealing the Act of 1840 (3 and 4 Vic., c. 78). Mr. Brown was by this time the recognized head of the most advanced wing of the Reform Party, the "Clear Grits" whom he had previously denounced. Advanced as were his views, however, he and his followers had one sentiment in common with the Conservatives, namely, hostility to the reigning Administration. This bond of union, slight as it was, was destined to bring about a change of Government. At the general election which followed the dissolution in 1854, Mr. Hincks, the Premier, was honoured by a double return. A great majority of the members returned for the new Parliament, however, were opposed to the policy of Mr. Hincks's Government. Mr. Malcolm Cameron, the Postmaster-General, was defeated by Mr. Brown in Lambton by a large majority, and other staunch supporters of the Government shared a similar fate. Upon the meeting of Parliament Mr. Hincks was compelled to resign, and he shortly afterwards retired from public life in this country, only to resume it many years after. He was succeeded by Sir Allan Macnab, who formed a Coalition Government, including himself as President of the Council and Minister of Agriculture, John A. Macdonald as Attorney-General West, and Commissioner of Crown Lands, William Cayley as Minister of Finance, Robert Spence as Postmaster-General, Etienne P. Taché as Receiver-General, and P. J. O. Chauveau as Provincial Secretary. Upon such a consummation as this Mr. Brown had not counted, and he opposed the new Government as vigorously as he had opposed the late one. The Opposition from the Lower Province was led by Mr. A. A. Dorion, and Mr. John Sandfield Macdonald arrayed himself on the same side, as the leader of part of the old Ministerial Party.

The Imperial Parliament had meanwhile paved the way to secularization of the Clergy Reserves by repealing the Act of 1840. The new Canadian Ministry were worldly wise, and bowed to the popular demand. They promptly passed a measure handing over the Clergy Reserve lands to the various municipal corporations, to be devoted to secular purposes. The Seignorial tenure—the last vestige of the feudal régime of New France—was abolished, and various other important reforms were enacted. Later on, after Mr. John A. Macdonald had supplanted Sir Allan Macnab, an Act was passed making the Legislative Council elective. The Globe, however, found abundant matter for criticism, both in the conduct of the Administration and in the personal character of some of its members. Though its criticisms may have sometimes been unduly harsh and wanting in discrimination, they seldom failed to tell upon the country. The Globe, merely as a newspaper, had now become a recognized necessity in the land, even by those who had no sympathy with the principles which it advocated. It was a daily, and on important occasions several editions of it were issued in the twenty-four hours. Its circulation was many thousands. The enterprise of its proprietor had placed it far in advance of any of its competitors as a medium of disseminating news. Its news was as trustworthy as current intelligence can possibly be; and however bitterly it might assail hostile ministries, it was always on the side of law and order and good morals. This latter qualification, which at the present day would be assumed as a matter of course, was at that date a real distinction, as anyone who thinks proper to examine the Canadian newspapers of the period will readily perceive. The Globe, in a word, was the only paper which was read everywhere in Canada, and its influence on public opinion was incalculable. It will not be supposed that this splendid success had been achieved without effort. It is no slight task for a young man [Pg 16]of limited experience and capital to establish a newspaper which shall affect the rise and fall of governments, the market price of stocks, the political, and even the religious faith of a large and heterogeneous community. Its proprietor possessed a boundless capacity for hard work. When any task of importance was to be performed, no one ever heard him complain of fatigue. He believed in himself. There is a not uncommon delusion in the public mind that a man, in order to be a successful journalist, should have no opinions of his own. He should be ready to take up any question, and any side of it, with equal zest. Never was there a greater fallacy. No man yet ever possessed genuine power without genuine convictions. A man who writes what he does not believe will never write well. He may write elegantly, and may cut capers and flourishes in philology with much alertness; but he will never write what will stir the public blood and hold the public ear. No amount of rhetorical training will ever enable a man who has no beliefs to write a telling paragraph. As Macaulay puts it, "The art of saying things well is of no use to the man who has got nothing to say." When Dr. Johnson wrote Tory pamphlets like "Taxation no Tyranny," he was Samson shorn of his hair. George Brown had pretty nearly all his life had something to say; and when the case was otherwise—a rare contingency—he had been accustomed to hold his tongue. His editorial articles in the Globe had always been conspicuous for what is known among journalists as point. They were not unfrequently very personal and in very questionable taste, but they were always on subjects in which the public felt a real interest. Their pungency always made itself felt. It may be doubted whether the acridity of the editorials had not as much to do with building up a reputation for the paper as its enterprise in collecting and distributing news. To carry on such an undertaking as this would in itself have been sufficient for the energy of most men. It was merely one iron—the principal one, however—that Mr. Brown had in the fire. He was the leader of an exacting Party in Parliament, and its mouthpiece outside. He was busy with church matters, social matters, municipal matters. It was to be expected that there would at times be pecuniary embarrassments. Agents sometimes proved dishonest, and the outlay was sometimes—for those days—enormous. Nothing furnishes a more signal proof of Mr. Brown's dogged, unconquerable power of will and readiness of resource, than the fact that he was always able to extricate himself from the manifold inconveniences of a narrow income and a prodigious outlay, and this while he had a score of other matters on his hands imperatively demanding attention. These difficulties, however, had been in a great measure surmounted at the time to which we have brought the narrative down. He was now comparatively well-to-do in money matters, and able to depute a good many of his former duties to subordinates. His speeches in the House during this period were marked by all the vigour and impetuosity of his early youth, and by a ripeness of judgment to which his earlier efforts could lay no claim. Notwithstanding the multitude and variety of his ordinary pursuits, he had found time to make himself thoroughly acquainted with constitutional questions, and looked at things from a broader point of view. Some of his speeches at this date produce a powerful effect on the mind, even when read in the solitude of the study, and must have been particularly effective when accompanied by his own forcible delivery. One or two of the best of them must have been made with very little preparation. Their spirit is liberal, and their statesmanship broad. His success as a Parliamentary speaker no longer admitted of dispute.

At the general election which took place [Pg 17]in the autumn of 1857 he achieved the triumph of being elected for two constituencies—the City of Toronto and the North Riding of Oxford. The crucial question on which he offered himself to the electors was that of Representation by Population—currently known as Rep. by Pop. He elected to sit for Toronto. Parliament met in Toronto at the end of February, 1858. On the question of Rep. by Pop. the Government was sustained by a majority of twelve. On another matter they were less successful. The question as to the location of the seat of Government had recently been submitted to Her Majesty, and it was now proclaimed that she had given her decision in favour of Ottawa. The Opposition, with Mr. Brown at its head, disapproved of this selection, and brought forward a resolution expressive of its views. This resolution was carried by a majority of fourteen, and the Ministry promptly resigned. Sir Edmund Head, the Governor-General, in order that the business of the country might not be impeded, requested Mr. Brown to form a Ministry. Mr. Brown assented, and formed what is known as the Brown-Dorion Administration, which was made up as follows:—For Upper Canada: George Brown, Premier and Inspector-General; James Morris, Speaker of the Legislative Council; Michael Hamilton Foley, Postmaster-General; John Sandfield Macdonald, Attorney-General West; Oliver Mowat, Provincial Secretary; and Dr. Skeffington Connor, Solicitor-General West. For Lower Canada: A. A. Dorion, Commissioner of Crown Lands; L. T. Drummond, Attorney-General East; M. Thibaudeau, Minister of Agriculture; Luther H. Holton, Minister of Public Works; and Charles Joseph Laberge, Solicitor-General East. This, the shortest Administration known to Canadian history, was fated to last only four days. Persons familiar with the past records of these gentlemen will readily understand that such a Ministry was composed of very incongruous materials, and could hardly have been expected to be of long duration. A vote of want of confidence was passed, and Mr. Brown requested the Governor-General to dissolve Parliament, upon the ground that it did not represent the feelings of the country. The Governor-General declined a dissolution, alleging that a general election had just taken place, and that the House sufficiently represented the popular will. The Government adopted the only alternative left—to resign office.

It was at this juncture that the episode known by the undignified name of the "Double Shuffle" took place. Mr.—now Sir Alexander—Galt was applied to by Sir Edmund Head to form a Government. Mr. Galt doubted his ability to form a Government which would command public confidence, and had no ambition to form one which, like its predecessor, would be compelled to resign in a few days. Upon his signifying his refusal to the Governor-General, the latter applied to Mr. George Etienne Cartier, the leader of the French-Canadian party in the House; whereupon Mr. Cartier, with the assistance of Mr. John A. Macdonald, formed the Cartier-Macdonald Cabinet. The composition of this Ministry was very much the same as that of the last Conservative Ministry, which had resigned just before the formation of the Brown-Dorion Administration, had been. The former had been known as the Macdonald-Cartier Administration. In the present one the names were simply reversed, and it became the Cartier-Macdonald Administration. It was composed of Messrs. John A. Macdonald, Attorney-General West; John Ross, President of the Council; P. M. M. S. Vankoughnet, Commissioner of Crown Lands; Alexander T. Galt, Minister of Finance; Sydney Smith, Postmaster-General; George Sherwood, Receiver-General; Charles Alleyn, Provincial Secretary; George Etienne Cartier, Attorney-General East; Louis [Pg 18]Victor Sicotte, Commissioner of Public Works; John Rose, Solicitor-General; and Narcisse F. Belleau, Speaker of the Legislative Council. The whole arrangement, indeed, was little more than a simple exchange of offices on the part of the members of the former Government. This would have been free from objection had the members of the new Cabinet returned to their constituencies for reëlection, but they did nothing of the kind. By a clause in the Act to ensure the Independence of Parliament it was declared that a minister resigning one office and accepting another within a month after such resignation might continue to retain his new office without reëlection. This is precisely what was done by the members of the Ministry at this juncture who had held office in the Macdonald-Cartier Administration. In doing so they kept within the strict letter of the law, but transgressed against the spirit of the Constitution, and the prevalent usage in Great Britain. Mr. Brown and the Reform Party generally denounced this conduct in unmeasured terms, and succeeded in creating a wide-spread feeling throughout the country on the subject. The matter was subsequently tested in the Courts, and the action of the ministers was upheld, as it could not be said that they had broken the law. The impropriety of such a proceeding, however, and the monstrous injustice to which it might give rise if allowed to be repeated, were so apparent that the Act was amended, and the obnoxious clause repealed. Mr. Brown after accepting office, had returned to his constituents in Toronto for reëlection. He was opposed by the Hon. John Hillyard Cameron, and the contest that ensued was one of almost unexampled keenness. Mr. Brown, however, was successful, and continued to represent Toronto until the then existing Parliament expired by effluxion of time in the month of June, 1861.

The Cartier-Macdonald Government continued to hold the reins of power, though its membership underwent one or two modifications, until the close of the Parliament in 1861. In the fall of the year 1859 a Reform Convention was held in Toronto which was destined to have important results, not only with respect to the existing Administration, but with respect to the Canadian Constitution. Two resolutions were passed, the first of which declared that the existing Legislative Union of Upper and Lower Canada had failed to realize the anticipations of its promoters; that it had resulted in a heavy debt, grave political abuses, and universal dissatisfaction; and that from the antagonism developed through difference of origin, local interest and other causes, the union in its present form could no longer be continued with advantage to the people. The second declared that the true remedy for those evils would be found in the formation of two or more local Governments, to which should be committed all matters of a sectional character, and in the erection of some joint authority to dispose of the affairs common to all. During the following session of Parliament, which opened at Quebec on the 28th of February, 1860, Mr. Brown moved these resolutions on the floor of the House. He supported them in a speech of great power. On the 8th of May a vote was taken on them, and they were both defeated by large majorities. As we all know, however, the country had not heard the last of them. The principles they enunciated came, in process of time, to be recognized as the only ones whereby the Government could be carried on, and they were subsequently embodied in the British North America Act of Confederation. Upon presenting himself as a candidate for Toronto East, at the general election of 1861, Mr. Brown was defeated by Mr. John Crawford, and did not offer himself to any other constituency. He was soon afterwards prostrated [Pg 19]by a serious illness—the first and only constitutional ailment which, in the course of a long and amazingly active life, he was ever called upon to endure. Upon his recovery he went abroad with a view to the thorough reestablishment of his health, and was absent from Canada for nearly a year. During his absence he married, at Edinburgh, on the 27th of November, 1862, Miss Annie Nelson, a daughter of the eminent publisher Mr. Thomas Nelson. Immediately after his return he resumed his management of the Globe with all his old vigour. The Cartier-Macdonald Administration had meanwhile been defeated on the Bill respecting military defences, and had given place to the Sandfield Macdonald-Sicotte Government. The latter was now vehemently assailed by the Globe on various grounds, but chiefly for its non-adoption of Representation by Population, and its devices for securing the support of the French Canadian members. In 1863 Dr. Connor, the member for South Oxford, was elevated to a seat on the Judicial Bench, and thus left a vacancy in the House of which Mr. Brown determined to avail himself. His election for that constituency was a foregone conclusion, and he continued to represent it in Parliament until the Union. During the same year (1863) he delivered a speech in Toronto on the subject of "The American War and Slavery," which was subsequently published at Manchester under the auspices of the Union and Emancipation Society. It attracted much attention, not only in Canada and the United States, but in Great Britain, and received a warm eulogium from John Stuart Mill. This year was further rendered memorable to Mr. Brown by the death of his father, who died at his residence in Toronto on the 30th of June. The Globe contained an eloquent and touching tribute to his memory.

By this time the views which Mr. Brown had persistently advocated ever since his first entry into public life—more especially on the vexed question of Representation by Population and the "joint authority" scheme—had begun to commend themselves to the intelligence of his opponents. The Ministry from time to time underwent various modifications, but parties were so evenly divided that no Ministry could feel itself strong. Its majorities on every important measure were insignificant, and it was compelled to adopt a vacillating policy which satisfied nobody. There had been a considerable increase in taxation, accompanied by a steadily-increasing deficit in the public exchequer, and there was an uneasy feeling from one end of the country to the other. After the prorogation on the 12th of May, another reconstruction of the Cabinet took place, and the Sandfield Macdonald-Dorion Administration was formed. Parliament met in August. The debate on the address lasted fourteen days, and the motion was finally carried by a majority of only three—the vote standing sixty-three for the Ministry to sixty against. With this harassing majority the Government contrived to drag through the session, which came to an end on the 15th of October. The following spring ushered in a new Cabinet with Sir E. P. Taché as Premier. It was no stronger than the late one had been, and only existed a few weeks, when a vote of non-confidence was passed. Public feeling was more disturbed than ever. It was evident that if the Government of the country was to be carried on at all there must be a change, not of the Cabinet merely, but of the constitution itself. There was literally a "dead-lock" in public affairs. Even the strongest advocates of party began to stand aghast, and to seriously ask themselves whither this untoward state of things was leading them. The Government could no longer be carried on by either party. Neither dissolutions nor readjustments of the Ministry could effect any [Pg 20]lasting good. Those devices had been repeatedly resorted to, and had accomplished nothing beyond prolonging an unseemly and useless struggle.

Mr. Brown's day of triumph was at hand. The "joint authority" scheme which he had so often brought forward; which had been made the subject of continued ridicule; which had been voted down time and time again by overwhelming majorities; which had been jeered at as the chimaera of an unpractical theorist with a bee in his bonnet—this scheme at last began to be seriously entertained. It soon came to be recognized as the one and only remedy for the existing dead-lock. Mr. John A. Macdonald, after taking counsel with his colleagues, made advances to Mr. Brown, and proposed that a Coalition Government should be formed for the purpose of carrying the project into effect. Mr. Brown consented to temporarily sink all past hostilities, and to join hands with his opponents for the public good. Three seats in the Cabinet were placed at his disposal, and were filled by himself, as President of the Council, William Macdougall, as Provincial Secretary, and Oliver Mowat, as Postmaster-General. "Thus," says Mr. Macmullen,1 "a strong Coalition Government was formed to carry out the newly-accepted policy of Confederation, and although extreme parties here and there grumbled at these arrangements, the great body of the people, of all shades of opinion, thankful that the dangerous crisis had been safely passed, gladly accepted the situation, and calmly and confidently waited the progress of events. Never before had a coalition been more opportune. It rendered the government of the country again respectable, elevated it above the accidents of faction, and enabled it to wield the administrative power with that firmness and decision so requisite during the trying and critical period which speedily ensued."

A similar agitation had meanwhile sprung up in the Maritime Provinces, and during the following September a Conference of Delegates was held at Charlottetown, Prince Edward's Island, with a view to the Confederation of those Provinces. At this Conference Messrs. George Brown, John A. Macdonald, George E. Cartier, A. T. Galt, Thomas D'Arcy McGee, H. L. Langevin, William Macdougall and Alexander Campbell were present, having attended for the purpose of urging a confederation not merely of the Maritime Provinces, but of all the Provinces of British America. This larger scheme met with favour, and the project of a mere Maritime Confederation was abandoned. After several days' discussion the Conference adjourned till the 10th of October, when the delegates agreed to meet at Quebec. Mr. Brown and his colleagues from Canada West spent a great part of the interval in making a progress through New Brunswick and Nova Scotia, where they addressed numerous public meetings, and unfolded the merits of the great project which they had in view. The adjourned Conference met at Quebec on the 10th of October, and was attended by thirty-three delegates, representing all shades of opinion, from the different Provinces. The session was held with closed doors, and lasted seventeen days. During those seventeen days all the principal points of Confederation were agreed upon, and resolutions embodying them were adopted by the Conference. Mr. Brown's speeches during these seventeen days have been pronounced by persons who heard them, and who are capable of forming a disinterested opinion, to have been the most noteworthy utterances of his life. They were entirely devoid of party-feeling, and were marked by a lofty and disinterested patriotism in which his own personal politics and aspirations seemed to have no part. It is said that more than one of the delegates were for the first time awakened [Pg 21]by those utterances to a true sense of the importance of the great task in which they had been called to take part.

The details of the scheme were soon afterwards published to the world. On the opening of Parliament in February of the following year, the resolutions which had been passed by the Conference were fully discussed. There were some malcontents, but the country at large recognized the merits of the scheme, and it was finally adopted. A deputation, consisting of Messrs. Macdonald, Cartier and Galt, and Mr. Brown himself, went over to England to confer with the Imperial Government, and the chief provisions of the Act of Confederation were there and then finally settled.

The question of Reciprocity between Canada and the United States began to come prominently forward at this time. The treaty negotiated in 1854 had been conditioned to continue in force for ten years from March, 1855, after which it might be put an end to by either party upon giving twelve months' notice. That notice had already been given by the United States, and the treaty would expire on the 17th of March, 1866. The people of Canada were all but unanimous in desiring a renewal of reciprocity, and a deputation was sent to Washington for that purpose. Before the departure of the deputation, however, Mr. Brown had withdrawn from the Administration. He was not in accord with the other members as to the terms upon which it would be desirable to negotiate for reciprocity. His colleagues were disposed to yield more to the demands of the United States than he believed to be for the interests of the country. This was his ostensible reason for withdrawing from the Government; but the probability is that he felt as though he had been in it long enough. As matter of fact, there was no good purpose to be served by his continuing to hold office with persons in whom he had no confidence, and to whom he had always been opposed. It was not without reluctance that he had amalgamated with them, and he had only consented to do so for a specific purpose—to bring about Confederation. That purpose had already been practically accomplished; as, although the Act had not been passed, its terms had been settled, and there was nothing further to be done which could not be accomplished as well without his assistance as with it. His withdrawal, however, was much regretted by several members of the Cabinet. It may here be mentioned that the United States finally declined to entertain the project for a renewal of the treaty, except upon terms to which the Canadian deputation could not be expected to assent, and the negotiations came to nothing.

From the time of resigning his place in the Coalition Government Mr. Brown did not take an active part in Parliamentary life. At the first general election which took place after Confederation, in 1867, he contested the South Riding of Ontario with Mr. T. N. Gibbs, for the House of Commons. It was an act of great temerity on his part, for Mr. Gibbs was a local candidate of great influence. Mr. Brown was defeated, and did not afterwards make any similar attempt. On the 16th of December, 1873, he was called to the Senate, and subsequently attended from time to time the deliberations of that body, but did not take any specially prominent part in its proceedings. In the summer of 1874 he went to Washington on behalf of the Dominion and the Empire, as Joint Plenipotentiary with Sir Edward Thornton, to negotiate a new Reciprocity Treaty with Mr. Secretary Fish, on behalf of the United States. He took with him Mr. J. Saurin McMurray, barrister, of Toronto, in the capacity of Secretary, and during their stay in Washington, which extended over a period of several weeks, they were both busily employed in endeavouring to carry out [Pg 22]the object of their mission. A draft treaty was prepared and approved of by the Governments of the Dominion and Great Britain; but upon being submitted by President Grant to the United States Senate, that Body thought proper to reject it; and no attempt to obtain reciprocity between the two nations has since been made.

During the last few years of his life Mr. Brown's energies were principally directed to the conduct of the Globe and of the Model Farm called Bow Park, near Brantford. The latter establishment, which is owned by a Joint Stock Company called "The Canada West Farm Stock Association"—of which Mr. Brown was himself the manager, and in which he was the principal stockholder—is one of the principal attractions of Canada for all foreign visitors who take an interest in agricultural matters. It embraces a tract of nine hundred and thirteen acres of land, and is said to be in many respects the finest stock farm on this continent. It is resorted to every year by admiring visitors from Great Britain and the United States, and its establishment has done much to improve the quality of farm stock throughout the Dominion. Mr. Brown was undoubtedly moved to enter upon this enterprise by a belief that he would aid in the development of Ontario agriculture by the introduction of the best breeds of cattle in large numbers; but he loved farming for its own sake, and was never so happy as when walking through the cattle sheds, or roaming through the fields and copses of Bow Park with his children. Although city born and bred, he is said by those capable of forming an opinion to have been an excellent judge of the points of cattle, and he was eminently successful as a breeder. It is cause for congratulation that his work will be continued under the auspices of the company which he formed some years ago.

The circumstances under which Mr. Brown received the wound which produced his death are fresh in the public memory, and are well known to every reader of these pages. Some account of them, however, is necessary to give completeness to the present sketch. For some years prior to the month of February last the Globe Printing Company had in their service a man named George Bennett, a native of Cobourg, Ontario. He was employed in the capacity of an assistant engineer, and was a man of dissipated habits and loose character. On the 5th of February last he was discharged, by Mr. Brown's orders, for neglect of duty. From Mr. Brown's own account of the subsequent course of events, and from the evidence adduced at the trial on the 22nd of June last, it appears that Bennett, on the day after his dismissal, called upon Mr. Brown personally, and urged the latter to give him another trial. With this request Mr. Brown refused to comply. A day or two later Bennett again called upon Mr. Brown, at his private office in the Globe building, and urged his restoration in the strongest terms, but with the same result as before. On both of these occasions Bennett was quite reasonable in his language and respectful in his demeanour. He showed no sign of vindictiveness or excitement, either in manner or word. Seven weeks passed away, and Bennett, on the afternoon of the 25th of March, again presented himself in Mr. Brown's office. When Bennett entered, Mr. Brown was writing at his desk, and on seeing who his visitor was he immediately rose from his seat and walked up to him. Bennett began to plead for reinstatement, when he was told that it was needless to urge the matter further. Bennett then drew a paper from his pocket, which he said contained a certificate to the effect that he had been five years in the Globe office, which he wished Mr. Brown to sign. This Mr. Brown refused to do, suggesting to him to go to the head of his department, who knew the length of time he [Pg 23]had been employed, and the manner in which he had discharged his duty. Mr. Brown also suggested that he should go to the Treasurer of the Company, who knew from the books how long he had been in the office. Bennett was not content with this, but still persisted, saying, "Sign, sign"—at the same time stretching the paper over towards the desk at which Mr. Brown had been sitting. Mr. Brown thereupon told Bennett that he could have no more discussion, as he was very busy. Mr. Brown then walked towards the door, facing Bennett, when he observed the latter slowly put his right arm around his back, and then his left hand, the purpose of which was suggested when a click was heard. Swiftly a revolver was produced, and was on the point of being raised to fire, within a few inches of Mr. Brown's body, when Mr. Brown instantly grasped the assassin's pistol-arm with his left hand, and forced the muzzle down, while he clutched the man closely with his right arm. The pistol went off before Mr. Brown had time to turn it away from his person, and he received a bullet through his thigh, which entered at the front, and came out behind. A scuffle then ensued, Bennett trying to get the pistol turned towards Mr. Brown's body, and to get away from Mr. Brown's grasp. This struggle carried the parties through the doorway and across the hall, when Mr. Brown forced Bennett's head through a pane of glass, which threatened serious consequences to him. Bennett struggled desperately to get his pistol free from Mr. Brown's grasp, which held pistol and hand together. Mr. Brown met this effort by an equally earnest one to wrest the pistol from his hand, and at the same time raised the cry of "Murder." Assistance speedily came, but by this time Mr. Brown was master of the situation. The police were speedily on the spot, and took Bennett into custody. It was not until Mr. Brown had walked back into his room, and was surrounded by numbers of anxious friends asking particulars of the affair, that he became fully aware that he had been shot. Meantime one of the gentlemen of the establishment had started off to bring his family physician, Dr. Thorburn, who in a few minutes made his appearance. The necessary examinations having been made, Dr. Thorburn was enabled to state that no serious injury had been inflicted, and that a few days' rest and quiet were probably all that would be required to restore Mr. Brown to full health and vigour. Shortly after, Mr. Brown left the office in a carriage, to which he walked without assistance, amid the hearty congratulations of his friends at his escape from sudden death.

For some days afterwards, no serious apprehensions were felt as to the result. Mr. Brown was not a man given to magnifying his personal ailments, and it will surprise no one who knew him well to learn that he treated his wound as trifling. When he was borne home from his office on the day of the catastrophe, he laughed at the solicitude of those near and dear to him, and for some time afterwards devoted a portion of every day to business matters. He continued thus hopeful so long as the full measure of his intelligence remained to him. The members of his family, however, were more keenly alive to the shock to which his system had been subjected, and from the first took a less sanguine view of his situation. As time passed by, his condition became critical. Large abscesses formed around the wound, which continued to discharge after being opened by the surgeons. Fever and delirium ensued, and for six weeks the contest continued, until his natural strength gave way. Modern appliances for relieving long confinement, for administering food, and for dressing wounds were used with skill and assiduity. All that professional skill could do was done, but all was of no avail. Mr. Brown possessed great energy, and had all the appearance [Pg 24]of health, but long years of earnest labour had made him older than his years, and the assassin's bullet did its work. About two o'clock in the morning of the 9th of May the end came. He sank quietly to rest, without a struggle, in the presence of several members of his family. The news of his death spread rapidly over the country, and created a deep and general feeling of sorrow. Messages expressive of sympathy and regret were received by the family from all quarters of the Dominion. The funeral took place on Wednesday, the 12th, and was the most numerously attended that has ever been seen in Toronto. The place of sepulture was the family burial-plot in the Necropolis.

Mr. Brown was a member and regular attendant of the Presbyterian Church. Whether or not his religious convictions were strong, the writer is unable to say. They were at all events not unduly paraded. According to the testimony of those who attended him in his last hours, he lived and died in the faith of his fathers. He left a wife and three children, a brother and three sisters, to mourn his loss, and the unhappy catastrophe which led to it.

Mr. Brown was a man of large views in business, in works of benevolence, and in public enterprises. He had little time to act on committees or boards, but no good enterprise was presented to him without securing his influence and his contribution. His friendships were strong and enduring, and he never forgot a kindness.

The foregoing pages embody such particulars in Mr. Brown's life as may reasonably be supposed to possess an interest for the general reading public of the present day. The facts with reference to his Parliamentary career have necessarily been given in the merest outline. To go fully into details would not only occupy a space much greater than the scheme of this work will admit of, but would render it necessary to adopt an attitude inconsistent with perfect historic impartiality. Such an attitude the writer does not conceive it to be his duty to assume. It is believed, however, that enough has been said to enable the impartial reader to form something like a correct estimate as to what manner of man this was who occupied so large a space on the political canvas of our country for the last thirty years. The writer's own estimate has been sufficiently indicated in the opening paragraphs; and that estimate—though it may not commend itself to every reader—will, it is believed, be sanctioned by the verdict of posterity. Fortunately, political prejudices are for an age, and not for all time. When the asperities of the present shall have become merged in the recollections of the past, it can hardly fail to be conceded that George Brown's influence upon his chosen country was on the whole exerted for that country's good. His enemies have often unjustly stigmatized him as a tyrant. Unjustly; because it is the quality of a tyrant to attack the weak, and his attacks were always directed against the strong. His imperious will, his occasional wrong-headedness and infirmities of temper raised up for him bitter and formidable enemies. They even prevented many of his friends who judged him only from the outside from recognizing the great and genuine manliness—and even kindness—of his character. But when all deductions have been made: when the debtor and creditor side of his account shall have been fully made out: the balance will be found to be a large one, and on the right side.

William Johnston Ritchie
William Johnston Ritchie
Lith. by Rolph Smith Ltd Toronto from Photo by W. J. Topley, Ottawa

[Pg 25]




Chief Justice Ritchie is a son of the late Mr. Thomas Ritchie, one of the Justices of the Inferior Court of Common Pleas of the Province of Nova Scotia, a tribunal which has long since been abolished. His mother was a daughter of the late Hon. James W. Johnston, who was for many years one of the most prominent lawyers and politicians of Nova Scotia, and who for some time prior to his death, in 1873, occupied a seat on the Judicial Bench.

He was born at the town of Annapolis, the oldest settlement in Acadia, on the 28th of October, 1813. He received his education at Pictou Academy under the tutelage of the late Dr. Thomas McCulloch. After leaving school he studied law at Halifax, in the office of his brother the Hon. John William Ritchie, the present Judge in Equity for Nova Scotia. In 1838, having made up his mind to practise at the Bar of New Brunswick, and having already practised as an attorney at St. John for about two years, he was called to the Bar of that Province. His professional career was highly creditable, but, during its early stages, was not marked by any incident of special importance for biographical purposes. His rise was not rapid, but steady, and was built upon a sure and solid foundation. He soon established himself in practice, and won a creditable reputation, alike for forensic learning and manliness of character. He continued in active practice of his profession about nineteen years, during a part of which time he was also engaged in political life. It was impossible, indeed, for any rising professional man in New Brunswick to avoid mingling to some extent with politics in those stirring times. At the general elections of 1842, Mr. Ritchie was an unsuccessful candidate in the Liberal interest for the representation of the city and county of St. John in the Legislative Assembly of New Brunswick. In 1843 he married Miss Martha Strang, of St. Andrew's, N. B., who survived her marriage about four years. In 1847 he again entered the lists as a candidate for the Legislative Assembly of New Brunswick, on behalf of the city and county of St. John. In this second attempt he was successful, and continued to sit in the Assembly until 1851, when he retired in order to devote himself exclusively to his profession. In 1854, he married Miss Grace Vernon Nicholson, a daughter of the late Mr. Thomas L. Nicholson, of St. John, N. B., and a step-daughter of the late Admiral Owen, R. N., of Campobello.

In the autumn of 1853 he was offered a silk gown, which he declined to accept, unless upon the condition that the appointment should be made on professional grounds, and that his acceptance should not be considered as an endorsement by him of the politics of the party then in the ascendant. The conditions were made known by the Governor, Sir Edmund Head, [Pg 26]to the Secretary of State in the Home Government. The appointment was notwithstanding made, and in the month of January, 1854, Mr. Ritchie became a Queen's Counsel, in which capacity he frequently represented the Crown in cases of public importance.

In the month of October following he became a member of the Executive Council of New Brunswick. On the 17th of August, 1855, he was appointed a Puisné Judge of the Supreme Court of New Brunswick, and continued to sit on the Bench in that capacity until the end of November, 1865, when he succeeded the late Hon. Robert Parker as Chief Justice of the Province. He occupied the position of Chief Justice about ten years, when, upon the creation of the Supreme Court of the Dominion, he was nominated as one of the Puisné Judges conjointly with Messieurs S. H. Strong, J. T. Taschereau, T. Fournier, and W. A. Henry. His appointment bears date the 8th of October, in that year. He removed from his native Province to New Edinburgh, a suburb of Ottawa, and has ever since resided there. On the 25th of November, 1878, during the absence in Europe of Chief Justice W. B. Richards, Judge Ritchie administered the oath of office to the Marquis of Lorne upon his landing at Halifax as Governor-General of Canada. Upon the subsequent resignation of Chief Justice Richards, Judge Ritchie succeeded to the vacancy thereby created, and was sworn in by the Marquis of Lorne on the 20th of February, 1879.

Chief Justice Ritchie enjoys the reputation of being a sound and thoroughly-read lawyer, an accomplished scholar, and a man of great force of character. His judgments are held in high respect by his brother jurists, as well as by the legal profession at large.

The Earl of Durham
The Earl of Durham
Lith. by Rolph Smith Ltd Toronto

[Pg 27]



It is a circumstance worth noting that the shortest administrative term known to Canadian history was likewise in many respects, the most important. Its duration was less than six months. Lord Durham arrived in Canada on the 27th of May, 1838, and set sail from Quebec on the 3rd of November in the same year. His stay in this country therefore embraced a period of little more than five months; but in that brief interval he acquired a more thorough knowledge of Canadian affairs than had been possessed by any of his predecessors. The knowledge so acquired was erelong turned to account, and it is not going too far to say that Lord Durham accomplished more of lasting good to Canada than was effected by any other Governor who has represented the Majesty of Great Britain in these colonies. His elaborate and carefully considered report paved the way to the union of the Provinces, to the fusion of antagonistic races, and to the establishment of Responsible Government. The man who brought about these desirable reforms thereby established an especial claim upon the lasting regard of the Canadian people. It may be said, indeed, that he was the founder of good government in this country, and of the principle which ultimately developed into Confederation. Men like Francis Gore and Sir Peregrine Maitland come and go, leaving no beneficial trace of their presence behind them. Men like the Earl of Durham leave their mark upon their country, and, to some extent, upon their age.

He was for some years one of the most conspicuous personages in Great Britain. Half a century ago he was the rising hope of Liberalism in British politics, and the expectations which were formed as to his future career were almost extravagantly sanguine. It may be doubted whether these anticipations would have been fully realized, even if his life had been spared; for, notwithstanding his rare talents, he lacked some of the essential elements of statesmanship. He was endowed with an almost boundless capacity for hard work, but could not bear to wait for results. He had an imperious will, which made him singularly impatient under opposition—even the opposition of his best friends. He was deficient in tact, and his impulsiveness and want of self-control frequently placed him in a false position before the nation, even when he unquestionably had right on his side. Conscious of the rectitude of his intentions, and convinced of the soundness of his judgments, he was keenly intolerant of contradiction, and was by no means slow to express his contempt for the opinions of those who differed from him. He made many powerful enemies, and seemed to take an almost morbid delight in intensifying the bitterness of their enmity. In this way he materially hindered the development of his career, and [Pg 28]prevented his great talents from being appreciated according to their merits. He did not live long enough to outgrow his impetuosity, and to set himself right in public esteem. His life, we believe, has never been written in his native land, and his name has almost passed out of public memory there. In this country, however, there are doubtless many persons who would be glad to know something more of Lord Durham than is to be found in the various histories of Canada, and it is due to his memory that we should occasionally call to mind how much we owe to his exertions on our behalf.

The subject of this memoir—born plain John George Lambton—was the representative of an old English family which traces its descent in an uninterrupted course for a period of seven hundred years, and which to this day owns and occupies the ancestral estate from which the family name was originally derived. This estate is situated in the Northern Division of the County of Durham, only a few miles from the Scottish border. With antique genealogies, however, we have no present concern, and for the purposes of this sketch it will be unnecessary to refer to any ancestor more remote than William Henry Lambton, the father of the statesman who subsequently became first Earl of Durham and Governor-General of Canada. William Henry Lambton was a prominent member of the most advanced section of the Whig party, and represented the City of Durham in the British House of Commons for many years. He was a personal friend and ally of Charles James Fox, and held a high place in the esteem of that great statesman. He married Lady Anne Barbara Frances Villiers, a daughter of the fourth Earl of Jersey, by whom he had a daughter and four sons. The eldest son, John George, is the subject of this sketch. He was born at Lambton Castle, the county seat of the family, on the 12th of April, 1792. He received his early education at Eton and Cambridge, and after leaving college held for a short time a commission in a regiment of hussars. Three months before attaining his twentieth birthday, on the 12th of January, 1812, he made a romantic Gretna Green marriage with Miss Harriett Cholmondeley, who survived the marriage only a little more than three years. Immediately upon attaining his majority and succeeding to the family estates he offered himself as a candidate for the representation of his native county of Durham in the House of Commons, and notwithstanding the Toryism of that constituency he was returned at the head of the poll. His career as a speaker in the Commons was not a specially brilliant one, but he was true to the traditions of his house, and made himself known as an energetic and advanced reformer. He was a Liberal from profound conviction, as well as by right of his paternity, and never swerved from his allegiance to his Party from the time he first entered politics down to the end of his career. He made himself cordially hated by the Tories of that day, from his uncompromising opposition to the retrogressive legislation of the Government. His interest with the Liberal party was strengthened by his second marriage, which was contracted on the 9th of December, 1816, with Louisa Elizabeth, eldest daughter of Earl Grey; and his eldest son by this lady, George Frederick D'Arcy, second Earl of Durham, is the present representative of the title. In 1819 he came conspicuously before the public as the champion of popular rights by his scathing denunciations, both in the House of Commons and at numerous public meetings, of the measures proposed by the Castlereagh-Sidmouth Government for the coercion and repression of the Chartists. In the month of April, 1821, he moved for a Committee of the Whole House to consider the state of the representation, and made a [Pg 29]stirring speech in favour of Parliamentary Reform. He at this time, which was eleven years prior to the passing of the Reform Bill, advocated the establishment of equal electoral districts, the abolition of the Septennial Act, and the restoration of triennial Parliaments—changes much more sweeping than were sanctioned by the Act of 1832. His health had never been robust, and in 1826 its condition was such as to render a continental tour necessary. He travelled for several months through Southern Europe, and spent more than half a year at Naples. Upon his return to England in 1827 he supported Canning's Ministry, and after the dissolution of Lord Goderich's Administration in January, 1828, he was raised to the peerage by the title of Baron Durham. On the formation of Earl Grey's Reform Ministry in November, 1830, Lord Durham accepted office as Lord Privy Seal, and was one of four persons appointed to prepare a new Reform Bill. Mr. Justin McCarthy, in his recently published "History of Our Own Times," draws a picture of Lord Durham during his tenure of office in Earl Grey's Ministry which puts him before posterity in a tolerably clear light. "He" (Lord Durham), says Mr. McCarthy, "is said to have had an almost complete control over Lord Grey. He had an impassioned and energetic nature, which sometimes drove him into outbreaks of feeling which most of his colleagues dreaded. Lord Durham, his enemies and some of his friends said, bullied and browbeat his opponents in the Cabinet, and would sometimes hardly allow his father-in-law and official chief a chance of putting in a word on the other, side, or in mitigation of his tempestuous mood. He was thorough in his reforming purposes, and had very little reverence for what Carlyle calls the majesty of custom. He had no idea of reticence, and cared not much for the decorum of office." His well-known passage at arms with the Bishop of Exeter, during the debate on the Reform Bill, is a not inapt example of his manner of dealing with his opponents. The Bishop, in the course of a long and not ineffective speech, had quoted numerous historical examples in support of his prediction that the passage of the Reform Bill would bring sudden and certain disaster to Great Britain. He of course did his best to make light of the arguments of the advocates of the Bill, and indulged in some badinage which stung Lord Durham to frenzy. The latter had no opportunity for reply until the next night, but his fury underwent no diminution, and the sun was permitted not only to go down, but to rise upon his wrath. When he began his reply on the following night he seemed to have perfect command over himself, and for some time went on to criticise certain unimportant details of the Bill. After a few minutes of this he quietly glided into the subject of the reverend prelate's speech of the previous night. Then he let loose the flood-gates of his indignation. He referred to the speech as an exhibition of "coarse and virulent invective, malignant and false insinuation, the grossest perversions of historical facts, decked out with all the choicest flowers of pamphleteering slang." The speaker was called to order, and it was moved that the language should be taken down. Lord Durham, in response to this motion, declared that he did not mean to defend his language as elegant or graceful, but he asserted that it exactly conveyed what he had meant to say; that he believed the Bishop's speech to contain false and scandalous insinuations; that he had said so; that he now begged leave to repeat the words; and that he paused to give any noble lord who thought fit an opportunity of taking them down. There was, however, no taking down; and when his Lordship saw from the demeanour of the House, that he had gone too far, he made a quasi-apology, not to the Bishop of Exeter but to the House at large. He [Pg 30]begged that some allowance might be made if he had spoken too warmly; for he had lately suffered much domestic grief. The grief had arisen from the recent death of his eldest son.2 The House respected his great sorrow, and made allowance for the petulance and ill temper he had displayed.

He was subject to continual attacks of ill health, and on the 23rd of March, 1833, he resigned his Ministerial office. He was at the same time advanced in the peerage to the viscounty of Lambton, and was created Earl of Durham. In the summer of the same year he consented to go to St. Petersburg on a special mission to the Czar of Russia, on which mission he was absent until the following spring. Soon after his return a banquet was given to Lord Grey by the Reformers of Edinburgh. Lord Grey's Administration, which had accomplished the great work of carrying through the Reform Bill, and which had passed through a notable session under the first Reformed Parliament, had long been torn by internal dissensions, and needed reconstruction. The Premier had completed his seventieth year, and the state of his health was too feeble to admit of his discharging the duties of his position with satisfaction to himself. Lord Brougham whose eccentricities and fierce ebullitions of temper had already made him the dread of most of his colleagues, was continually sneering at his Chief, and arrogating to himself governmental functions which properly belonged to Lord Grey. The latter's position had become insupportable to himself, and he had repeatedly threatened to resign. He had at last fulfilled his threat, and a new Ministry had been formed under Lord Melbourne. Lord Grey's official career having thus come to an end, the Liberals had determined to give a banquet in his honour, at which the leaders of the Party might have an opportunity of giving expression to their unabated esteem for that nobleman's character and statesmanship. The banquet, which was held at Edinburgh on the 15th of September, 1834, was of unusual splendour, and to this day is sometimes spoken of as almost an event in the city's history. Lord Brougham, in spite of his relations towards the ex-minister, was present on the occasion, and made an extraordinary speech in which he lauded his own services and public virtues to such an extent as to disgust every one present. He descanted on the differences that existed between the two classes of Reformers. There were, he said, hasty spirits who were bound to steer the ship of state into harbour by the nearest channel, unmindful whether or not they cast the vessel on the rocks. The other class, among which the speaker included himself, he described as being endowed with prudence and moderation, and as making due provision for the vessel's safety. "I wholly respect the good intentions of these men," said his Lordship; "but when they ask me to sail in their vessel I must insist on staying on shore." These remarks Lord Durham conceived to have been levelled at himself—as, indeed, there is no manner of doubt they had been—and he was not the man to tamely submit to castigation, even from so scorching a tongue as was that of the fiery Chancellor. He replied in a scathing speech, parts of which were almost as fierce as anything that had ever come from Brougham's own lips. Other parts of it were free from objectionable matter, in the abstract; but, owing to Brougham's position at the time, even those parts were keenly felt and treasured up by him. The extraordinary courtly leanings which Brougham had recently been displaying were touched upon with withering [Pg 31]sarcasm, as were also his growing lukewarmness in the cause of Reform. "My noble and learned friend," said Lord Durham, "has been pleased to give some advice, which I have no doubt he deems very sound, to some classes of persons—I know none such—who evince too strong a desire to get rid of ancient abuses, and fretful impatience in awaiting the remedies of them. Now I frankly confess that I am one of those persons who see with regret every hour which passes over the existence of recognized and unreformed abuses." The effect of this passage of arms was such as seriously to impair the harmony of the banquet. A few days after, Lord Brougham, at a meeting at Salisbury, reflected upon Lord Durham by name, and hinted that they would one day meet in the House of Lords, where the discussion might be resumed. "I fear him not," said Lord Durham; "I accept his challenge, and will meet him in the House of Lords." "It is not unfair," says the writer already quoted from, "to the memory of so fierce and unsparing a political gladiator as Lord Brougham to assume that when he felt called upon to attack the Canadian policy of Lord Durham, the recollection of the scene at the Edinburgh dinner inspired with additional force his criticism of the Quebec ordinances."

In the summer of 1835 Lord Durham consented to return to St. Petersburg in the capacity of Ambassador, and remained there about two years. He had not been at home many months before he was asked to go to Canada to quell the rebellion. The numerous difficulties in this country called imperatively for adjustment. The nature of those difficulties is well known to all readers of these pages. To Lord Durham's friends it seemed that a time had arrived when he would have an opportunity of showing the world how much there was in him. He was appointed Governor-General and Her Majesty's High Commissioner "for the adjustment of certain important affairs affecting the Provinces of Upper and Lower Canada." Immediately after accepting the appointment he announced in the House of Lords that in discharging the duties of his position he would endeavour to make British supremacy respected in Canada, but that he would act with perfect impartiality. He would patronize no section of the population, he said, but would administer equal justice, and afford equal protection, to all the inhabitants of the colony, whether English, French, or Canadian. Nothing could have more certainly proved his fitness for the post than such a disposition. He believed himself to be, and doubtless it was intended that he should be, armed with the fullest powers.

He prepared to carry out his mission in a manner befitting his exalted rank, and the extraordinary powers wherewith he believed himself to be invested. The vessel which conveyed him to these shores was fitted up with unusual splendour. His suite was very large, and created a marked impression upon reaching this country. This was perfectly in unison with Lord Durham's intentions, for, though an advanced Liberal in politics, he was unusually fond of pomp and luxurious display. He brought over with him several gentlemen as secretaries and assistants, among whom were Charles Buller, Edward Gibbon Wakefield, and Thomas E. M. Turton. All of these were men of unusual ability, but two of them were somewhat under a cloud in English society on the score of morality. Mr. Buller's career, both before and subsequent to his Canadian experiences, was in the highest degree creditable to him. He had in his youth been a pupil of Thomas Carlyle. Later on he had sat in the British House of Commons, and had voted for the Reform Bill. His subsequent career was one of unusual brilliancy, but was cut short by his death in 1848, ten years after his visit to Canada. [Pg 32]His old tutor wrote a touching obituary notice of him in the Examiner, which is included in Mr. Carlyle's collected works. It is to Mr. Buller's pen that we are chiefly indebted for the famous "Report" which is inseparably associated with Lord Durham's name. So far, then, as Mr. Buller was concerned, there was nothing to be urged against him. With Mr. Wakefield and Mr. Turton the case was different, and, as will presently be seen, their shortcomings, as well as Lord Durham's fondness for display, were subsequently taken advantage of by Lord Brougham and others to influence public opinion. Mr. Wakefield's principal delinquency consisted in his having been concerned in the abduction of a young lady from a boarding-school. The young lady, who was a Miss Turner, had been clandestinely married, and the marriage had been subsequently annulled by Act of Parliament. The discussion to which the passage of the Act gave rise rendered it impossible that the abduction—which was then, and is still, a very serious offence—could be allowed to go unpunished. Mr. Wakefield was arrested, tried, and convicted of the offence, and was sentenced to a term of two years' imprisonment. This, of course, had left a stain upon his name, and he was not the most reputable ally that a distinguished statesman and a peer of the realm could have chosen. Mr. Turton, who was a barrister, had been the defendant in an action for criminal conversation, and had been mulcted in heavy damages. Both these gentlemen, however, were, as has already been remarked, men of singular ability, and it is simply just to say that their advice and assistance were of inestimable value to Lord Durham and to Canada.

His Lordship landed at Quebec, with true vice-regal pomp, on the 29th of May, 1838. He found that the rebellion had nearly calmed down. The constitution of the Lower Province had been suspended by an Act of the Imperial Parliament, and the administration of affairs had been entrusted to a Special Council, whose decrees were to have the same effect as Legislative enactments have under a constitutional government. The suspension was a sore point with many of the French Canadians, and Lord Durham had a difficult task before him. He however managed things wisely and well. He adopted a policy of combined firmness and conciliation, and put forth a proclamation declaring that the honest, conscientious advocates of Reform would receive from him that assistance and encouragement which their patriotism had a right to command, without distinction of party, races or politics. He at the same time declared that all disturbers of the public peace, all violators of the law, would find in him a firm and uncompromising opponent. "I beg you," said his Lordship, "to consider me as a friend, and an arbitrator ready at all times to listen to your wishes, complaints and grievances; for I am fully determined to act with the utmost impartiality." A few days later he suspended the Special Council, and called into existence a new one, nominated by himself, and chiefly composed of members of his own staff. He issued divers ordinances with a view to the pacification of the country, and travelled about to make himself acquainted with the actual state of affairs. Everything was going more smoothly than could have been expected, and he gradually began to see his way to a successful issue to his mission. The great stumbling-block in his path was the disposition of the rebels. The public of the Lower Province, as he well knew, would not sympathize with harsh measures, nor had he himself any leaning towards harshness. In case of the rebels being brought to trial, unless the device of packing a jury were resorted to, it would be impossible to secure convictions. Lord Durham was an honest man, and did not [Pg 33]believe in packing juries, even to convict the most odious of criminals. He moreover knew that the rebels might justly plead a good deal in extenuation of their offence. He was disposed to look upon their struggles for liberty with a pitying eye, and he had certainly no desire that they should expiate their crime on the gallows. At the same time it would never do to entirely condone the offence, so far, at any rate, as the ringleaders were concerned. Some of these had already fled beyond his jurisdiction, but there were a few still remaining in the country who could not be allowed to go altogether unpunished. There was no constitutional way out of this difficulty; or rather, the constitutional way out of it would have brought further disaster on the country, and would have given satisfaction to no one. Lord Durham cut the Gordian knot by proclaiming a general amnesty, making an exception in the case of certain individuals named, as to whom it was declared that after undergoing an exile, the length of which was not specified, they might hope to be permitted to return to their country and their homes when such return could be allowed with due regard to the public safety. Eight of the rebel leaders who were then in gaol at Montreal were directed to be transported to Bermuda. Sixteen others had fled from the Province; and it was declared that if any of either class should return to Canada without permission they should suffer death as traitors.

Now, in so ordaining, there can be no sort of doubt that Lord Durham was exceeding his legal authority. Neither can there be any doubt that he knew perfectly well what he was doing. But the emergency was one without precedent, and he conceived himself to have been empowered, as we have seen, to do whatever he should deem best calculated to restore peace and good order. He cared little for rules of law, if he could do justice, and at the same time restore tranquillity to the colony. At the present day, no sensible man will be found to deny that if his policy had met with universal support at home it would have been efficacious. But he had exceeded his authority, and Lord Brougham, who had been steadfastly waiting his opportunity ever since the Edinburgh banquet, saw that it had come. On the 7th of August he made a ferocious attack upon Lord Durham in the House of Lords. He animadverted upon what he called "the appalling fact" that Mr. Louis Joseph Papineau and fifteen of his compatriots, not one of whom had been brought to trial, had been adjudged to suffer death if they dared to show their heads in Canada. Such a proceeding, he said, was contrary to every principle of justice, and was opposed to the genius and spirit of English law, which humanely supposed every accused person to be innocent until he had been found guilty. Lord Lyndhurst declared that no such act of despotism as that perpetrated by Lord Durham had ever been seen in any country at all regardful of legal forms. Brougham, Ellenborough and Lyndhurst contrived to stir up a very strong feeling against Lord Durham. They attacked him on every hand. They enlarged upon the extravagance which had marked his Commissionership, and referred to the expense the country had been at in fitting up the vessel in which he had made his voyage across the Atlantic. The cost of his vice-regal journeys in Canada was also freely commented upon. The personal characters of Messieurs Wakefield and Turton were once more torn to pieces for the benefit of the nation, and it was alleged that Lord Durham, by employing and allying himself with these men, had participated in the discredit which attached to their names. The battle, in a word, was waged, not only without gloves, but with a ferocity that has had few parallels in English Parliamentary debate. As a matter of strict law, of [Pg 34]course Brougham was correct in the matter of the banishment of the rebels, and the Ministry, after mature deliberation, concluded that Lord Durham's ordinance must be disallowed.

The news of this disallowance, which first became known to Lord Durham through the medium of a New York newspaper, almost drove him frantic. He announced his determination to wash his hands of the Imperial Ministry at once and forever. His feeling was not unnatural, but he was imprudent enough to give expression to it by means of a proclamation addressed to the Canadian people resident in Quebec. This, of course, was to discredit the authority under which he had all along been professing to act. "The proceedings in the House of Lords"—so ran the words of the proclamation—"acquiesced in by the Ministry, have deprived the Government in this Province of all moral power and consideration. They have reduced it to a state of executive nullity, and rendered it dependent on one branch of the Imperial Legislature for the immediate sanction of each separate measure. In truth and in effect, the Government here is now administered by two or three Peers from their seats in Parliament. In this novel and anomalous state of things, it would neither be for your advantage nor mine that I should remain here. My post is where your interests are really decided upon. In Parliament, I can defend your rights, declare your wants and wishes, and expose the impolicy and cruelty of proceedings which, whilst they are too liable to the imputation of having originated in personal animosity and party feeling, are also fraught with imminent danger to the welfare of these important colonies, and to the permanence of their connection with the British Empire." The sympathies of the British in Canada were of course with Lord Durham throughout. Addresses from the Canadian people to the Imperial Ministry were sent across the Atlantic, in which His Excellency's policy was highly commended as the true and only one by which Canada could be made a desirable place of habitation. Less law-abiding citizens sent over addresses couched in threatening and abusive language, and Lord Brougham, Lord Glenelg and Lord Melbourne were burned in effigy in the streets of Montreal and Quebec. Intelligence of these things in due course reached England, where the press came out strongly in condemnation of Lord Durham's proclamation. The Times denounced his Excellency's policy from first to last, and referred to him in a leading article as the "Lord High Seditioner." Meanwhile His Lordship, without waiting to be recalled, or to obtain leave to return, embarked for Europe, along with his family, on the first day of November; leaving the direction of the affairs of the colony in the hands of Sir John Colborne. This, of course, was another grave error on his part. A Colonial Governor must be subordinate to his superiors, or there would soon be an end of Colonial Government altogether. His proud and sensitive nature had been irritated to such a degree as seriously to affect his health, which had never been robust. He well knew, however, that a hard battle was before him, and strung himself up to the task. During the voyage home the greater part of the famous "Report" was drafted by Mr. Buller. It was carefully perused and amended here and there by His Lordship, and his amendments show clearly how thoroughly he understood the Canadian situation. Upon landing at Plymouth he found that, by order of the Government, he was not to receive the customary salute accorded to returned Governors of British Colonies. The public, however, had got it into their heads that Lord Durham had been sacrificed for fighting the battles of the people against the aristocracy, and both at Plymouth and [Pg 35]elsewhere throughout the country they received him with loud acclamations. John Stuart Mill had taken up his cause in the Westminster Review, and the example had been followed by the lesser lights of the Reform press all over the kingdom, so that the public were pretty well informed as to the nature of the quarrel between him and the Ministry. Let Lord Brougham and his courtly friends roar as loud as they pleased; let the Ministry treat Lord Durham as a disgraced man. The English people knew that no graver charge than rashness and petulance could be brought against him, and for such slight offences they were not disposed to criticise him with harshness. They knew that he, and he alone among the English statesmen of that day, saw to the bottom of the Canadian difficulties. They remembered his services in the cause of Reform, and they were readily disposed to pardon the insubordination of a peer who fought against his brother peers for the rights of the people. In an inconceivably short time, considering its great length, the "Report" was completed, revised, put in type, and published. From the time of its publication Lord Durham can hardly be said to have needed any apologist. It is scarcely an exaggeration to pronounce that Report one of the most masterly State papers in the English language. No one who is unfamiliar with its contents can seriously pretend to anything like an accurate or comprehensive knowledge of Canadian history and politics. Its great length, and the exhaustive manner in which it deals with every aspect of the colonial position, precludes the possibility of giving even a summary of its contents in these pages. It may be said, however, that it paved the way for Responsible Government and the Union of the Provinces. One of the first to read it and grasp its main points was John Stuart Mill, who reviewed it at length in the Westminster, and thus made it known to many persons who are not given to the study of State papers. Mr. Mill spoke of it as laying the foundation of the political and social prosperity, not of Canada alone, but of all the other colonies of Great Britain. How it subsequently came to be acted upon by the Imperial Ministry, and how Lord Sydenham was sent over to see it carried into effect, is told elsewhere in this work. Well might Lord Elgin say, a few years later, that the real and effectual vindication of Lord Durham's memory and proceedings would be the success of a Governor-General of Canada who would work out his views of Government fairly.

Lord Durham lived long enough to learn that time would vindicate the justness of his policy, but not long enough to see that policy established. He attended public meetings in various towns in England, and made eloquent speeches in which he used many hard words, and sought to justify even the undoubted errors by which his Canadian mission had been marred. He had tried to prepare himself for a prolonged and bitter struggle, and not altogether without success. But the constant tension upon his nerves soon completely broke down his health. He retired to his seat at Lambton Castle, and there for a few months waited the end which he saw could not be long delayed. There is an old legend connected with his family to which he used often to refer—probably only half in jest—during these closing months of his life. The legend, which up to comparatively recent times was devoutly believed by the peasantry on and around the family estate, predicts the early death of the chief representative of the race of Lambton. As it is interesting, and not very generally known, it may not be amiss to give some account of it. It must be premised that the Castle, which is near the site of the former family mansion, stands upon an eminence on the northern bank of the River Wear, a beautiful winding [Pg 36]stream meandering through miles of what Tennyson calls "brambly wildernesses." The remarkable story of the Worm of Lambton is as old as the days of the Crusades. We abridge it from an old chronicler. The heir of Lambton, fishing, as was his profane custom, in the Wear of a Sunday, hooked a small worm, or eft, which he carelessly threw into a well, and thought no more of the matter. The worm, at first neglected, grew till it was too large for its first habitation, and issuing forth from the Worm Well, betook itself to the Wear, where it usually lay a part of the day coiled round a crag in the middle of the water. It also frequented a green mound near the well, called thence "The Worm Hill," where it lapped itself nine times round, leaving vermicular traces, of which grave living witnesses depose that they have seen the vestiges. It now became the terror of the country; and, amongst other enormities, levied a daily contribution of nine cows' milk, which was always placed for it at the green hill, and in default of which, it devoured man and beast. Young Lambton had, it seems, meanwhile, totally repented him of his former life and conversation; had bathed himself in a bath of holy water, taken the sign of the Cross, and joined the Crusaders. On his return home he was extremely shocked at witnessing the effects of his youthful imprudence. He saw that the Worm must be at once destroyed, and immediately undertook the adventure. After several fierce combats, in which the crusader was foiled by his enemy's power of self-union, he found it expedient to add policy to courage, and not, perhaps, possessing much of the former quality, he went to consult a witch, or wise woman. By her judicious advice, he armed himself in a coat of mail, studded with razor-blades, and thus prepared, placed himself on the crag in the river, and awaited the monster's arrival. At the usual time, the Worm came to the rock, and wound himself with great fury round the armed knight, who had the satisfaction to see his enemy cut in pieces by his own efforts, while the stream, by washing away the several parts, prevented the possibility of reunion. There is still a sequel to the story. The witch had promised Lambton success only on one condition—that he would slay the first living thing which met his sight after the victory. To avoid the possibility of human slaughter, Lambton had directed his father that as soon as he heard him sound three blasts on his bugle, in token of the achievement performed, he should release his favourite greyhound, which would immediately fly to the sound of the horn, and which was destined to be the sacrifice. On hearing his son's bugle, however, the old chief was so overjoyed that he forgot the injunctions, and ran himself with open arms to meet his son. Instead of committing a parricide, the conqueror again repaired to his adviser, who pronounced, as the alternative of disobeying the original instructions, that no chief of the Lambtons should die in his bed for seven, or, as some accounts say, for nine generations—a consummation which, to a martial spirit, had nothing very terrible about it.—"Johan Lambeton, that slewe y^e Worme," says an old pedigree, "was Knight of Rhoodes, and Lord of Lambeton and Wod Apilton, after the dethe of fower brothers, sans esshewe masle. His son Robert Lambton was drowned at Newebrigg." Thus the spell began speedily to operate, according to tradition, and probably in his own lifetime, as no descendant of his ever appears to have succeeded him in the estate. Whatever authentic records may prove to the contrary, tradition stoutly asserts that the wise woman's sentence on the race for the sin of disobedience was regularly fulfilled down to General Lambton, the ninth in succession, who, it is said, fearing that the prophecy might possibly be fulfilled by his servants, under the idea that he could [Pg 37]not die in his bed, kept a horsewhip beside him in his last illness, and thus eluded the prediction by keeping all his attendants at a respectful distance from his couch. General Lambton was the grandfather of the subject of this memoir, and after his death the peasantry began to modify the legend somewhat. It was said that though the spell had been wrought out, so far as the prediction about the heir dying in bed was concerned, yet that it would continue to operate for several generations longer so far as to curtail the reigning representative's life. This saying was verified in the case of Lord Durham's father, who died early. Lord Durham, when he felt how completely his own constitution was shattered, used jocularly to express a hope that the worm's manes would accept his own death in full satisfaction of its injuries, and would not demand the early demise of his descendants.

It was his wish to die at home; but in the early summer of 1840 his physicians advised him to try the effects of the air in the south of France. In compliance with this prescription he started for the continent, but upon reaching Southampton he found himself so utterly prostrated that he did not think it advisable to make the experiment of crossing the channel, the vexed waters whereof make a very uncomfortable cradle for an invalid. He passed over to Cowes, in the Isle of Wight, where his life rapidly ebbed away, and on the 28th of July he breathed his last.

Mr. McCarthy's summing up of his character cannot well be improved upon, and with it we conclude our sketch. "He wanted to the success of his political career that proud patience which the gods are said to love, and by virtue of which great men live down misappreciation, and hold out until they see themselves justified and hear the reproaches turned into cheers. But if Lord Durham's personal career was in any way a failure, his policy for the Canadas was a splendid success. It established the principles of colonial government. One may say, with little help from the merely fanciful, that the rejoicings of emancipated colonies might have been in his dying ears as he sank into his early grave."

[Pg 38]



Sir Hugh Allan was born at Saltcoats, a seaport on the Firth of Clyde, in Ayrshire, Scotland, on the 29th of September, 1810. His father, the late Captain Alexander Allan, was a shipmaster who had all his life been employed on vessels trading between the Clyde and the St. Lawrence, and was very popular with emigrants and other trans-Atlantic passengers. Hugh was the second son of his parents, by whom he was early intended for a seafaring life, like that of his father. As is often the case with persons who have been very successful in life, he enjoyed comparatively few educational advantages. At the age of thirteen he entered into the counting-house of Messrs. Allan, Kerr & Co., at Greenock, in the shipping trade, where he remained for about a year, when his father advised him to emigrate to Canada. He acted upon the advice, and sailed from Greenock in the ship Favourite, on the 12th of April, 1826. His father was the captain of the vessel, and his elder brother was the second officer. He landed at Montreal on the 21st of May. There was then only one steam tug on the river, and it was not able to tow the Favourite through the St. Mary's current. A message was then sent ashore to a butcher to send some oxen, but the united efforts of the tug and the oxen were not enough. The Favourite had been built at Hochelaga, and the builder sent fifty to a hundred men to assist, and so they got her in. Such, as described by Sir Hugh Allan himself, were the difficulties encountered in navigating the St. Lawrence in a sailing vessel half a century ago. In a paper read at a church festival in Montreal, in the course of last winter, Sir Hugh gave some interesting personal reminiscences of his early career in Canada, and to that paper we are indebted for many particulars included in the present sketch. Speaking of the river-front of Montreal in the year 1826, Sir Hugh informs us that there were no wharves; that the bank shelved down from Commissioners Street to the river; that in coming into the river the ships had to let go an anchor, and the work of unloading could only go on slowly, over a gangway, the horses and carts standing in the water. The habits of the people were as primitive as the aspect of the city itself. They generally lived over their stores, and it was quite usual for them to sit on chairs on the sidewalk in the open air, enjoying a chat. There was a large open sewer all the way down Craig Street as far as Dow's brewery. From there it took a sharp curve, passing where St. Ann's Market now is, and emptied into the harbour where the Custom House stands. It was the receptacle for dead animals and all sorts of filth, and was very offensive. There were but few houses on the west side of Craig Street. So much for the commercial metropolis of Canada, in the Year of Grace 1826.

Hugh Allan
Hugh Allan
Lith. by Rolph Smith Ltd Toronto from Photo by W. Notman, Montreal

[Pg 39]

Hugh Allan soon obtained a situation in the commercial establishment of Messrs. William Kerr & Co. The business was dry-goods and small wares. He was thus engaged three years, during which he also acquired some knowledge of keeping books and accounts, a pursuit of which he was very fond, and to which he devoted a large portion of his spare time. The business as a whole, however, did not suit his taste, and the pecuniary results were not satisfactory to his ambition. He threw up his situation and, after a brief visit to the principal towns in the Upper Province, he returned with his father to Greenock, where he remained for the winter, and then visited Manchester and London. He again sailed from Greenock for Montreal on the 5th of April following, in a new vessel belonging to his father—the Canada—and they arrived at Montreal on the 4th of May. When he landed from the Canada he had no special object in view. He met on the street the late Mr. James Miller, who then carried on an extensive shipping business in Montreal. Mr. Miller had a vacancy in his office, and told him he had better go there for the present. He was glad of the opportunity to learn the business, and gratefully acted upon the suggestion. Mr. Miller always treated him with great kindness, and even partiality. He was occupied for some time buying wheat for Mr. Miller's export trade, and spent his business hours in a storehouse in the village of Laprairie. The habitants paid their rents to the seigneurs in wheat, and the priests collected their tithes in wheat. Mr. Miller purchased largely from these sources. In 1832 young Allan shipped for Mr. Miller 150,000 bushels of wheat, 100,000 from between St. John's and Laprairie, and 50,000 from along the north shore.

After spending five years in the employ of the firm of Miller & Co., Mr. Allan was admitted as a junior partner. He devoted himself to the business with great energy, and steadily rose to a high place in the estimation of his partners and the customers of the firm. Upon the breaking out of the rebellion in 1837, he joined the Fifth Battalion as a volunteer, and rose to the rank of a Captain. In 1838 Mr. Miller, the senior partner in the firm, died, and Mr. Allan's services became more important to the success of the business than before. The style of the firm thenceforward became Edmonston & Allan, which subsequently became Edmonston, Allan & Co. Under various changes of style, the firm has steadily increased in prosperity, and its business has grown to momentous proportions. Its present style is Hugh & Andrew Allan—Andrew being a younger brother of Sir Hugh. In 1851 the firm first began to build iron screw steamships. The Canadian, the first vessel of that description constructed by them, made her first trip in 1853, and in the following summer the service of mails was commenced which continue to this day. The history of the firm from that time down to the present is the history of Canadian maritime commerce. In addition to their line plying between Canada and Liverpool they have long had an independent line plying between the St. Lawrence and the Clyde. Their firm was the first to adapt the spar or flush deck to the steamers, an innovation which was strenuously opposed by the Board of Trade, which for a long time persisted in refusing to allow them any concession in the way of measurement, for harbour dues, until the City of London went down in the Bay if Biscay. Then, and not till then, did the Board of Trade recognize the efficacy of the improvement, and grant the proper concessions. Nearly all their Atlantic steamers now have the spar deck, whereby the safety and comfort of passengers is very greatly promoted. Their fleet has long ranked among the principal fleets of the world, and is managed with [Pg 40]remarkable prudence and efficiency. Most of the captains have risen from the ranks in their own service, and the mariners are from time to time promoted according to a system as strict and impartial as that which prevails in the army.

During the progress of the Crimean War the Indian and the Canadian, two of the company's steamers, were employed by the Governments of Great Britain and France to transport the troops from Portsmouth and Marseilles to the Levant. They continued to be employed in the Government service until the close of the Russian War. Again, in 1874, the Sarmatian and the Manitoban were employed on a similar service, to convey troops to the west coast of Africa, to take part in the Ashantee campaign.

Mr. Allan's great energy, perseverance, close attention, and general business capacity have met with their just reward, and have placed him among the first, if not absolutely first among the merchant princes of the Dominion. He is a Director in many important commercial, banking, and other enterprises, of some of which he was the original promoter. Principal among these may be mentioned the Montreal Telegraph Company, the Merchants' Bank of Canada, the Montreal Warehousing Company, and the Mulgrave Gold Mining Company. During the visit of Prince Arthur to this country in 1869, he was the guest of Mr. Allan at his princely residence of Ravenscraig, in Montreal, and at Belmere, his summer villa on the shores of Lake Memphremagog. For his courtesies to His Royal Highness, and in recognition of his great services to Canadian and British commerce, Mr. Allan was in 1871 knighted by Her Majesty as Sir Hugh Allan of Ravenscraig. A less pleasing episode in his career is his connection with the purchase of the Pacific Railway charter, upon which we have no desire to enlarge.

On the 13th of September, 1844, he married Matilda, second daughter of Mr. John Smith, of Montreal, by whom he has a numerous family. Though nearly seventy years of age he is still of active habits, and exercises a personal supervision over many important departments of the business of the firm.

[Pg 41]




Dr. Burns has been eminently successful in life, and enjoys the great merit of having been in every sense of the term the architect of his own fortunes. His father was the late Mr. James Burns, a carpenter and joiner, who resided near the village of Castlewellan, County Down, Ireland. There Alexander Burns was born, on the 12th of August, 1834. He began to attend school at a very early age, and continued his attendance until 1847, when he had reached his thirteenth year. He had by that time acquired a good rudimentary education, the further progress whereof was interrupted by the emigration of his parents from Ireland to Canada, whither he and the other members of the family accompanied them. The family settled in Quebec, where Mr. Burns the elder carried on his trade. The son was for a short time employed as an assistant in an apothecary's shop, but did not find that pursuit to his liking, and soon abandoned it. After remaining in Quebec about three years his parents removed to Toronto, where they continued to reside during the remainder of their lives. Mr. James Burns, the father, was a strict Presbyterian, and upon his arrival in Toronto became a member of Knox's Church, on Queen Street. When the division arose in the congregation of that church, about twenty-eight years ago, Mr. Burns and most of his compatriots from Ireland who enjoyed the privileges of membership withdrew, and formed themselves into a separate congregation, which finally developed into the congregation of Cooke's Church. Mr. Burns was a man of very moderate views on theological matters, although he had been taught the Calvinistic doctrines in all their rigour. The members of his family, who at this time all resided at home, were of course reared in the Presbyterian faith—the subject of this sketch among the rest. It cannot be said that the latter held any distinct theological views until he had nearly arrived at manhood, though of course his father's teachings had not been altogether without result, and he was a regular attendant at church. A time soon arrived when he was called upon to fight the battle which most honest men of any real depth of character have to fight at some period of their lives. The famous Methodist revival preacher, the Rev. James Caughey, visited Toronto, and held a series of religious meetings with a view to calling sinners to repentance. The effect of his mission was prodigious. Many persons who had theretofore been indifferent concerning spiritual matters underwent "conviction of sin," and entered upon a new phase of life, with views and aims which they had never previously entertained. Young Alexander Burns attended the meetings, and was drawn under the powerful spell of the preacher. He awoke to new purposes, embraced the doctrines of the Wesleyan body, and was enrolled as a member of the Methodist [Pg 42]Church. He was honourably ambitious of acquiring knowledge, and resolved to devote himself to the ministry. His father's means were limited, and he himself was largely dependent upon his own resources. In order to obtain the means of acquiring a thorough educational training, he learned the trade of wood-turning, and in course of time earned sufficient to enable him to enter upon a collegiate course. In 1855 he entered Victoria College, Cobourg, where he studied with great diligence and made rapid progress. In the capacities of student and teacher he remained at the College about seven years. When he graduated in 1861, he was honoured with the Prince of Wales's gold medal, the highest prize in the gift of the institution. Of this prize he was the first recipient. He officiated as a tutor in the College for four years. In 1862 he first entered upon active work in connection with the ministry, and was stationed at Drayton, in the county of Wellington, where he remained until 1865. In that year Dr. Elliott, President of the Iowa Wesleyan University, visited the London Conference as delegate from the Methodist Episcopal Church of the United States, and persuaded Mr. Burns to accompany him to Iowa. He was appointed to the Chair of Mathematics and Astronomy, a position which he filled for three years, acting at the same time as Vice-President of the University. In 1868 he was elected President of the Simpson Centenary College of Iowa, which position he filled for ten years—that is to say, until his return to Canada about two years ago. After leaving the Iowa Wesleyan University, he was elected to its Presidency, but declined to accept that position. During his residence in Iowa he got through with a great deal of public work, outside of his own special department, such as annual addresses before colleges, lectures before teachers' institutes, addresses at church dedications, and similar labours; and this work often extended to other States. On several occasions he lectured before the North-Western University at Cranston, in Chicago, and in several other cities of the North-Western States. In the Centennial year (1876) he was one of the three delegates from the local Conference to [Pg 168]the General Conference of the Methodist Episcopal Church, which met in Baltimore, Maryland. In 1878 he accepted the position of Governor and Principal of the Wesleyan Female College at Hamilton, Ontario, and returned to Canada. His own department in the College includes Mental and Moral Science, Logic, Evidences, and Higher English Literature.

In 1870 he received the degree of S.T.D. (Sancta Theologiae Doctor) from the State University of Indiana, one of the wealthiest in the United States. In 1878 his alma mater, Victoria College, conferred upon him the degree of LL.D. He is the first and only alumnus that has received that degree from Victoria College. When her Charter was amended so as to give the alumni the right to representation on the Senate, he was one of the first elected, and at the last meeting of the alumni he was re-elected to the Senate for four years. He is one of the associate examiners of the University in Metaphysics. He has been elected to deliver the Annual Lecture before the "Theological Union" next year (1881).

Dr. Burns's reading has been wide and various, not only in theology, but in history, philosophy and general science. He is a man of very liberal and advanced views, alike in political, theological and social matters. For dogma, considered merely as dogma, he entertains but a very limited degree of respect. While thoroughly in sympathy with the teachings of his creed, he interprets that creed by the light of modern scientific research and the teachings of the times in which his lot has been cast. He asserts the supremacy of reason in [Pg 43]matters theological, as well as in the ordinary affairs of life, and believes that whatever is repugnant to reason should be eliminated from modern theology. He is a foe to infidelity, but believes in combating infidelity by arguments drawn from human knowledge and experience, rather than by the suppression of free and honest inquiry. He claims that both Government and the Church are for the people, and that neither the one nor the other should countenance a class by whose privileges others are injured or subordinated, whether the class be called an aristocracy, a democracy, or a State Church. In a word, Dr. Burns is a scholar, who has both read and thought much and deeply on the problems which for centuries past have been agitating the human mind, and which have risen into special prominence within the last few years. Both as a man and a theologian he is highly esteemed by his brother professors, and his liberal and enlightened policy have won for him many warm friends, both within the pale of the Church and outside of it.

On the 15th of January, 1863, he married Miss Sarah Andrews, of Devonshire, England, whose grace of person and character, excellent judgment, and womanly devotion have been a constant inspiration in her home, and have aided her husband very materially in all his upward struggles.

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One morning in the early autumn of the year 1859 two persons were walking eastward together along the north side of King Street, Toronto. One of these was a youth of sixteen; the other was a staid Canadian lawyer of mature age. They had passed the corner where the two main thoroughfares of the city intersect each other, and had arrived nearly in front of the site at present occupied by the Globe office, when the lawyer was addressed by a gentleman walking in the opposite direction, with whom he stopped to converse. The youth stepped aside to wait for his companion, who was soon engaged in an animated discussion with the personage thus encountered. The latter was a gentleman of somewhat noticeable appearance. He was very short in stature, plainly—almost shabbily—dressed, and carried in his hand a stout cane. He had a broad and rather massive brow; thin, mobile lips, which, except while he was speaking, were kept tightly compressed; and a countenance upon which Time had written innumerable deep wrinkles. His hair, beard and whiskers were grizzled, and his somewhat feeble gait betokened that he was past his prime, and had begun to feel the infirmities of age. The general expression of his face was suggestive of a long, bitter and unsuccessful fight with the world. The conversation could not have lasted much more than a minute before the short gentleman became violently excited. His eyes flashed red lightning at his interlocutor, and he began to gesticulate so wildly as to arrest the attention of passers-by. Perceiving this, and controlling himself by an evident effort, he moderated his tone and gestures; but he ever and anon brought his cane down upon the pavement with a ringing emphasis that told a story of inward excitement and pent-up wrath. The conference was of brief duration, and apparently was not productive of entire satisfaction to either of the gentlemen concerned. They separated, and pursued their respective ways, the lawyer being rejoined by the youth who had been waiting close by. The latter did not learn the particular topic of conversation which had aroused the old gentleman's ire, and is ignorant of it to this day; but he had no sooner resumed his walk than the lawyer asked:—"Do you know who that was? No! well, he is a man who ought to have been hanged twenty years ago. That old firebrand is the editor of the Weekly Message, and is no less a personage than William Lyon Mackenzie." The man who uttered these words died by his own hand within a few months of that morning. The youth to whom he addressed them was the writer of these lines.

William Lyon Mackenzie
William Lyon Mackenzie
Lith. by Rolph Smith Ltd Toronto

During the next few months it was no unfrequent occurrence for the writer to meet the old man on his way to and from the post-office in the early forenoon. The lawyer's dictum as to what ought to have [Pg 45]taken place twenty years before was rated at what it was worth—which was very little. Mr. Mackenzie, in those days, was the mere wreck of his former self. He was much bowed by years, by poverty, and by mental affliction, and with a broken constitution and a brain enfeebled by the fatal disease which had fixed its grasp upon him, he was slowly but steadily going down to the grave in which he was not long afterwards laid. He was poor; poor to a degree of which none of his friends, nor, indeed, anyone beyond the immediate circle of his own family, had any conception. It was known to all that he was not in affluent circumstances, but it was not known, or even suspected, that he was frequently in straits to procure the wherewithal to purchase to-morrow's meal. Had the extent of his poverty been known, many a helping hand would have been generously stretched forth to render more tolerable the declining years of the man who, notwithstanding many fatal errors of judgment, was an honest and sincere-minded patriot, who had struck many hard and effective blows on behalf of civil liberty in Canada.

His life, almost from his cradle, was one of ceaseless toil and struggle, and we do not covet the mental equilibrium of the man who can contemplate it without being stirred to his inmost soul. The sad story of his tempestuous life, wrecked in contending—unwisely, perhaps, but with an honesty which cannot be questioned—for a just principle, and finally brought to a premature close amid the darkness of despair, may well bring tears to the eyes of any one who is not dead to all human emotion. True, he himself was by no means free from blame. He was the most active mover in an ill-advised project, which brought disaster to many a Canadian household, and which involved a needless sacrifice of human life. But he, almost alone among his fellows, had the courage of his opinions: opinions which were honestly entertained, which were just in themselves, and most of which have since been approved by the general voice of the Canadian people. At a time when a selfish, grasping oligarchy, who had long ruled the land and had arrogated to themselves everything in it that was worth the having, were putting forth their utmost endeavours to perpetuate political evils, and to keep in a subjection which was but a modified form of slavery, a people who were entitled to be free: at such a time, and under such circumstances the voice of William Lyon Mackenzie was lifted up in the cause of the weak and oppressed. If, later on, he went farther than a cooler and wiser judgment would have gone, the censure must not fall upon him alone. And if he erred greatly he also suffered greatly. Many persons not yet past middle age can remember when he was a banished man with a price set upon his head; when he was hunted from place to place like a wild beast; when his name was execrated and blazoned abroad as that of a seditious rebel and traitor; when he was sick and imprisoned in a strange land; when he was compelled to resort to stratagem in order to be permitted to stand by the bedside of his dying mother. The mollifying influences of time have ameliorated much of the rancour which once attached to his name. The cause for which he fought and suffered has come to be regarded as in the main a righteous one, and even his most indefensible acts have been recognized as errors of judgment rather than deliberate treason. A Canadian historian who is by no means disposed to take a too partial view of his conduct thus rapidly reviews his career:—"As one traces his checkered existence, which presents such a strange admixture of upright intentions and dangerous errors, a doubt of his perfect sanity cannot fail to be evoked, to receive additional colour from the softening of the brain that finally resulted [Pg 46]in death. Ever unstable as water, he flits changefully before the eye as the Dundee shop-boy, the uneasy clerk, the bankrupt shopman, the newspaper editor, the bookseller, the druggist, the member of Parliament, the agitator, the political agent to England, the fomenter of rebellion, and the rebel general. As a refugee in the United States he shifted his occupation with the same chameleon rapidity as in Scotland and Canada; his peculiar faculty of getting into difficulties of one kind or another being in no way diminished, until at length, fully as tired of the (American) people as they were of him, he was glad to shelter his fortunes once more under the British flag which he had so impotently essayed to trample in the dust." The quasi-imputation of insanity contained in the foregoing extract, though it doubtless seemed to the historian the most plausible explanation of some passages in Mr. Mackenzie's career, will meet with no confirmation from those who knew him well. Mr. Mackenzie was no madman. He was a man of strong but erratic will, whose physical temperament was not in keeping with his mental adjustments. His eccentricity was the result of a nervous and hyper-sensitive disposition, smarting under a sense of wrong. The problem of life was to him, even more than to most thinking men, a very serious and utterly insoluble affair. His circumstances were almost always unpropitious, and little calculated to induce him to paint men and things in roseate tints. In other respects the quotation is a not inept kaleidoscopic picture of the ever-shifting phases of his strangely chequered career.

He was born on the 12th of March, 1795, at Springfield, a suburb of Dundee, in Forfarshire, Scotland. On the 9th of April following, when he himself was less than a month old, his father died, leaving a widow and an only child wholly unprovided for. They were for many years dependent upon the bounty of relatives, and frequently suffered the bitter pangs of want. The trials endured in his early childhood were frequently alluded to by Mr. Mackenzie in after years. In the autobiography published soon after his death we find the following touching little bit of domestic history:—"It is among the earliest of my recollections that I lay in bed one morning during the grievous famine in Britain in 1800-1, while my poor mother took from our large kist the handsome plaid of the tartan of our clan, which in early life her own hands had spun, and went and sold it for a trifle, to obtain for us a little coarse barley meal whereof to make our scanty breakfast; and of another time during the same famine when she left me at home crying from want and hunger, and for (I think) eight shillings sold a handsome, and hitherto carefully preserved, priest-gray coat of my father's to get us a little food.... Well may I love the poor, greatly may I esteem the humble and the lowly, for poverty and adversity were my nurses, and in youth, want and misery were my familiar friends."

The little boy seems to have been all in all to his mother, who was, upon the whole, an indulgent parent, though this did not deter her from imposing upon him, at times, certain most unwelcome tasks in the shape of long readings from the catechism and dry theological treatises. She had been reared in a strict and hard school, and regarded a knowledge of the Westminster Confession as the most important of all acquirements for a young man beginning life. This training produced a marked effect upon her son, who manifested a fondness for theological controversy throughout the whole of his career. Both in physical and mental characteristics he bore a striking resemblance to his mother, and inherited from her, among other qualities, a strong unyielding will, and an energy of purpose [Pg 47]which attended him through life. In after years this energy was chiefly expended upon politics, but was more or less conspicuous in all his actions. The space at our disposal does not admit of our following him very minutely through the various phases of his early years. After receiving an irregular and very incomplete school education, we find him at nineteen years of age going into business on his own account, at Alyth, a village about twenty miles distant from his native town. Having prosecuted this business for about three years he failed, and removed to England, leaving behind him certain creditors who, to his honour, were subsequently paid in full when prosperity attended his efforts. In the month of April, 1820, we find him a passenger on board the ship Psyche, bound for Canada, where in due course he arrived. His first employment on this side the Atlantic was in connection with the survey of the Lachine Canal, but this employment lasted only a few weeks. Before the close of the summer we find him embarked in a small mercantile business at York, the capital of Upper Canada; and not long afterwards in a more general business at Dundas, under the style of "Mackenzie & Lesslie." Here, on the 1st of July, 1822, he married; his bride being a Miss Isabel Baxter, who was likewise a native of Dundee. The business at Dundas was carried on with a fair measure of success until the spring of 1823, when the partnership was dissolved, and Mr. Mackenzie removed to Queenston, where he opened another general store. Here he remained only a year, but that year marks an important era in his life, for it was during its progress that he first began to take a prominent part in the colonial politics of the day. He abandoned commercial pursuits and became a journalist. He established a newspaper at Queenston, called the Colonial Advocate, the first of which, containing thirty-two pages, made its appearance on the 18th of May, 1824. Many years afterwards, in a letter written to a friend, he gave the following reasons for embarking on the troubled sea of politics. He says:—"I never interfered in the public concerns of the colony, in the most remote degree, until the day in which I issued twelve hundred copies of a newspaper, without having asked or received a single subscriber. In that number I stated my sentiments, and the objects I had in view fully and frankly. I had long seen the country in the hands of a few shrewd, crafty, covetous men, under whose management one of the most lovely and desirable sections of America remained a comparative desert. The most obvious public improvements wore stayed; dissension was created among classes; citizens were banished and imprisoned in defiance of all law; the people had been long forbidden, under severe pains and penalties, from meeting anywhere to petition for justice; large estates were wrested from their owners in utter contempt of even the forms of the courts; the Church of England, the adherents of which were few, monopolized as much of the lands of the colony as all the religious houses and dignitaries of the Roman Catholic Church had had the control of in Scotland at the era of the Reformation; other sects were treated with contempt and scarcely tolerated; a sordid band of land jobbers grasped the soil as their patrimony, and with a few leading officials, who divided the public revenue among themselves, formed 'the Family Compact,' and were the avowed enemies of common schools, of civil and religious liberty, of all legislative or other checks to their own will. Other men had opposed, and been converted by them. At nine-and-twenty I might have united with them, but chose rather to join the oppressed, nor have I ever regretted that choice, or wavered from the object of my early pursuit."

[Pg 48] When it is borne in mind that the foregoing is not an exaggerated account of the state of affairs in Upper Canada in those days, it is not surprising that the Colonial Advocate and its editor were at once placed under the ban by the dominant faction in the country. That faction had not been accustomed to have its policy criticised. The only man who had ever dared to assail it with anything like vigour was Robert Gourlay, and his experience had not been such as to encourage further efforts in that direction. The members of the Compact once more found themselves dragged before the bar of public opinion, and, figuratively speaking, placed on their defence. They determined to get rid of Mackenzie as they had previously got rid of Gourlay. Mr. Mackenzie and his paper lashed them without mercy, and after a fashion which convinced them either that this inveterate foe must be silenced or that the end of their reign was not far off. After publishing twenty numbers of his paper Mr. Mackenzie determined to remove to York, the Provincial capital. The removal took place in November, 1824, and on the 11th of January following the Legislature met. Scarcely had the House opened ere it became apparent that Liberal principles were making rapid advances in the country. The Government found itself in a minority, and there could be no doubt that Mr. Mackenzie and his Advocate had largely contributed to bring about this result. The paper continued to appear, not with perfect regularity, but often enough to cause serious alarm to the objects of its attacks, who made strenuous efforts for its suppression. Mr. Mackenzie, discouraged by the opposition he had to encounter, and by the want of pecuniary support accorded to him, resolved to discontinue the publication of the Advocate. This resolution, however, was not made known to the public, and erelong an act of ruffianism was perpetrated which gave the paper a new lease of life. On the evening of the 8th of June, 1826, during Mr. Mackenzie's temporary absence from home, his printing office was broken into by a genteel mob, chiefly composed of persons closely connected with the "gentlemen's party." The office was completely wrecked, part of the type was destroyed, and the rest thrown into the Bay. This dastardly act was committed in broad daylight, in the presence of two magistrates, neither of whom made any attempt to prevent it. Damages were subsequently recovered against some of the snobocracy who took part in this performance. Criminal proceedings were likewise instituted, and seven of the rioters were found guilty, but escaped with nominal punishment. Before the close of the year the Advocate was again in full swing, and continued to be published for seven years afterwards.

In consequence of this "press riot," as it was termed, Mr. Mackenzie's name came more prominently before the public than ever. He was regarded as a martyr, and many enthusiastic persons rallied to his support. At the election of 1828 he was returned to the Provincial Parliament as member for York. Then began a series of persecutions which lasted without interruption for several years. In the columns of the Advocate he had used many strong expressions against the ruling party in the House, and these expressions were made the pretext for proceeding against him for a breach of privilege. The matter came up for discussion, and Mr. Mackenzie was expelled from the House. His constituency showed their disapproval of this proceeding by forthwith reëlecting him. He was again expelled, and again reëlected. This expulsion and reëlection were repeated five times in succession. It was not even pretended that Mr. Mackenzie had done anything censurable in his capacity of a member of Parliament. The pretext for his expulsion [Pg 49]was that, as a newspaper proprietor, he had printed the proceedings of the House at his own expense, and without official authority. An obsolete rule of the House—not yet rescinded—forbade such publication, and the motions for expulsion proceeded upon that ground alone. In this manner the cause of Mr. Mackenzie became identified in the minds of the public with that of the liberty of the press, and each expulsion added to his popularity. Finding, after repeated trials, that no one could oppose Mr. Mackenzie with any hope of success, it was finally determined to punish his constituency by refusing to issue a writ for a new election, and for three years the county of York remained with only one representative in the Assembly. This arbitrary proceeding drew down upon the House the severe condemnation of the Imperial Government. Meanwhile Mr. Mackenzie, in May, 1832, proceeded to England with a petition of grievances, signed by many thousands of the Canadian people. He was well received at the Colonial Office, and his stay in England was protracted to eighteen months, during which time he was successful in bringing about some much-needed reforms. Certain persons holding high offices in the Provincial Government were removed, and the Lieutenant-Governor, Sir John Colborne, was instructed to appoint at least one member of the popular party to governmental office. Soon after Mr. Mackenzie's return to Canada the limits of the town of York were extended, and the town itself became an incorporated city under the name of Toronto. This was in March, 1834. A municipal election was at once held, and Mr. Mackenzie was elected the first mayor of the new city.

At the general election in October, 1834, Mr. Mackenzie was returned by the Second Riding of the county of York as a member of the Legislative Assembly of Upper Canada. He immediately afterwards discontinued the publication of the Colonial Advocate, the last number of which made its appearance on the 4th of November in that year. The new House met early in the following January, and Mr. Mackenzie took his seat without opposition. The election had been an exciting one all through the Province, and its result showed that Reform principles were gaining further ground. The strength of the respective parties in the House was effectually tested by the vote on the Speakership. Marshall Spring Bidwell, a staunch Reformer, was elected to that office by a vote of thirty-one to twenty-seven.

An antagonism had long been growing up between the Assembly and the Home Government, and it began to be apparent that a crisis in public affairs was not far distant. Early in the session, on the motion of Mr. Mackenzie, a Select Committee was appointed to inquire into certain matters in dispute between the two Governments, and in due time the Committee drew up and transmitted across the Atlantic the document subsequently known as the Seventh Grievance Report. This report was temperate and truthful in its tone, and was chiefly devoted to the subject of Executive Responsibility to the Assembly. The necessity for such responsibility had long been apparent, and had often been put forward by Mr. Mackenzie and those who acted with him. The Lieutenant-Governor and the Home Government controlled the entire patronage of Upper Canada, and, in the words of the report, "left the representative branch of the Legislature powerless and dependent." The Lieutenant-Governor made such appointments as he thought proper, without conferring with his Councillors, and sometimes contrary to their express advice. He observed a similar policy in assenting to or rejecting Bills passed by the Legislature. The public mind was by this time fully aroused to the injustice of these proceedings, and Sir John Colborne, finding his position [Pg 50]a most uncomfortable one, finally sent in his resignation. Before doing so, however, he resolved to make ample provision for the maintenance of the Church of England. Fifty-seven rectories were created and set apart from the Clergy Reserves. These were forthwith put into the hands of the ministry of the Episcopal Church, with a view to preventing future secularization. This arbitrary proceeding aroused a storm of feeling in the popular mind. Its legality was impugned, but without success, as the Constitutional Act of 1791 authorized the establishment of rectories. The lands reserved by that Act for the support of a Protestant clergy in Upper Canada amounted to nearly 2,500,000 acres. The appropriation of these lands—which were known as Clergy Reserves—to the exclusive use of the Church of England had long been a source of just dissatisfaction to dissenters, and the subject continued to agitate the public mind down to the year 1854, when the reserves were abolished and appropriated to secular purposes. The effect of the establishment of the above-named fifty-seven rectories can easily be imagined. Having signalized the close of his administration in this manner, Sir John Colborne surrendered the reins of government to his successor, who was Sir Francis Bond Head, formerly a Major in the British army. This gentleman was intellectually incapable of directing the affairs of the colony in troublous times. His appointment was one of the most extraordinary events connected with Canadian history, and was fraught with disaster to the country. His own account—too long for quotation here—of the manner of receiving the appointment is as interesting as a romance, and gives us an insight into the method—or want of method—pursued by the Home authorities in dealing with grave questions pertaining to this country. Suffice it to say that no selection could well have been more unwise. Soon after his arrival he appointed several members of the Family Compact to lucrative offices. Three places being vacant in the Council he filled them by appointing three prominent Reformers—Messieurs Robert Baldwin, John Rolph, and John Henry Dunn—to the vacancies. This was apparently done to conciliate the Reformers, by whom these three gentlemen were very highly esteemed; but Sir Francis nullified the appointment by never consulting the new members upon any public measure, and they soon resigned. It was evident that on the important question of Responsible Government there was to be no change for the better. The Governor's conduct was such as to render him unpopular with people of every shade of politics, and he had not been three months in the country before he had raised a storm of public excitement which was destined to produce grave results. Upon his shoulders, and not upon Mr. Mackenzie's, must rest the lion's share of responsibility for the rebellion which soon afterwards broke out. The Assembly framed an address to His Majesty in which Sir Francis was charged with imprudence, double dealing, and actual deviations from candour and truth. Then, in 1836, for the first time in Canadian history, came the stoppage of the supplies. In this extremity the Governor resolved upon a new election, and dissolved the House. He controlled the elections to such an extent that the leading Reformers of the country—including Baldwin, Bidwell, and Mackenzie—were beaten at the polls; and when the new House met it was a mere echo of his own voice.

The effect of all these things was to sting the Reformers of the Province into a righteous fury. As a rule, they were wise enough to bide their time, knowing that such high-handed tyranny would eventually work its own cure. The effect upon some of the less discreet, however, was to persuade them that the privilege of colonial connection [Pg 51]with the mother country was dearly purchased at such a price as they were called upon to pay, and some of the more discontented began to clamour for a republic. Among these latter Mr. Mackenzie, who at the commencement of his political career was as loyal a subject of the British Crown as any man living, occupied the foremost place. He had long despaired of any peaceful solution of the difficulty, and had at last become embittered to such a degree that he could see no remedy for the existing state of things but armed resistance. An insurrectionary movement had for some time been on foot in the Lower Province, which at this time burst forth into open rebellion. It became necessary to withdraw the troops from Upper Canada, in order to uphold the authority of the Crown in the sister Province, and Mr. Mackenzie seized the opportunity thus afforded for raising the standard of revolt nearer home.

To tell aright the history of the Canadian rebellion would require a large volume, and only the briefest outline can be given here. For a fuller account the reader is referred to "The Life and Times of W. L. Mackenzie" by his son-in-law, Mr. Charles Lindsey—a work indispensable to the student of Canadian history. The spirit of resistance which had been aroused began to take an active shape. An enrolment of the disaffected took place. Inflammatory appeals were made by Mr. Mackenzie and his coadjutors to the people of the Province, who were incited to strike for the freedom which, in the words of one of the appeals, could only be won at the point of the sword. A Central Vigilance Committee was formed at Toronto, and an attempt was made at organization throughout the settled parts of the Province. The organization, however, was not fully matured, and there was never any chance of the rebellion being permanently successful. Early in December, 1837, a few of the malcontents assembled on Gallows Hill, Yonge Street, within a few miles of Toronto, for the purpose of making a descent upon the city. Intelligence of the rising soon came to the ears of the Lieutenant-Governor, who was panic-stricken by the serious aspect of affairs. If Mr. Mackenzie and his followers had acted with promptitude it is tolerably certain that they would soon have been in possession of the city, in which case insurgents would have raised the standard of revolt all over the Province, and the rebellion—though it must sooner or later have been put down—would have proved a serious matter. But their advance was delayed, and, meanwhile, loyalists began to pour in from all quarters. Sir Francis regained his courage, and assumed the offensive. A considerable force was despatched against the insurgents, who made a very weak defence, and were soon routed, with a loss of thirty-six men killed and fourteen wounded. Mackenzie made his escape to the Niagara frontier, and thence across the river to Buffalo. Here, aided by republican sympathizers from both sides of the boundary line, he began a series of operations as unjustifiable as useless. The insurgents and their allies, under an American General called Van Rensellaer, took up their quarters on Navy Island, in the Niagara River, about two miles above the Falls, where they continued to disturb the peace of Canada for about six weeks. An American steamer called the Caroline was employed to transport supplies for the insurgents. The Canadian forces organized to suppress the rebellion, were under the command of Colonel (afterwards Sir Allan) Macnab, who determined to capture the Caroline, and detailed Lieutenant Drew on the service. On the night of the 29th of December, Drew and a detachment of about sixty men boarded the steamer at Fort Schlosser, where she was moored, and in a few minutes she was captured. The resistance offered was very slight, and only six [Pg 52]men were killed. The moorings were cut, the steamer was towed out into the stream, set on fire, and then abandoned. The current soon swept her into the rapids, and in a very short time what little of her was left unconsumed by the flames was hurled over the mighty abyss of Niagara. Mr. Mackenzie himself was an eye-witness of this spectacle from his retreat on Navy Island, and has left the following account of it:—"We observed, about one o'clock in the morning, a fire burning on the American side of the river, in the direction of the small tavern and old storehouse commonly called Schlosser. Its volume gradually enlarged, and many were our conjectures concerning it. At length the mass of flame was distinctly perceived to move upon the waters and approach the rapids and the middle of the river above the Falls. Swiftly and beautifully it glided along, yet more rapid in its onward course as it neared the fathomless gulf, into which it vanished in a moment amid the surrounding darkness. This was the ill-fated steamboat Caroline." Serious complications arose between the Governments of Canada and the United States in consequence of this affair, and for a time threatened to produce war; but through the intervention of General Scott the matter was amicably adjusted. After several ineffectual attempts at invading Canada, Mr. Mackenzie was arrested at the instance of the United States Government for a breach of the neutrality laws. He was indicted and tried at Rochester, where he was found guilty and sentenced to eighteen months' imprisonment. After remaining in confinement twelve months he was pardoned by the President, and once more became a free man. It was during this imprisonment that he was compelled to resort to strategem in order to visit his dying mother, as mentioned in the early part of this sketch. His mother, ninety years of age, lay dying at the house occupied by his family in Rochester. All his entreaties to be permitted to visit her were refused, and he wrote her a most pathetic letter bidding her a last farewell. A hotelkeeper named John Montgomery then conceived a device whereby the unhappy prisoner's object was accomplished. Montgomery sued one of his debtors, and issued a habeas corpus directing the sheriff to bring up Mr. Mackenzie to give evidence of the debt. The State-Attorney was prevailed upon to permit the court to be held in the house where the dying woman lay; and under these circumstances the last interview took place between mother and son. A few days afterwards the invalid breathed her last, and her son, from the windows of his cell, witnessed the funeral which he was not permitted to attend.

After two or three unsuccessful attempts to establish a newspaper at Rochester he went to New York, where, after suffering extreme poverty for several years, he obtained a small clerkship in the Custom House. When Mr. Greeley and his confrères established the Tribune, Mr. Mackenzie obtained employment on the staff of that journal. He acted as its Washington correspondent, and afterwards represented it at the Constitutional Convention of the State of New York. Several petitions were at various times presented to the Canadian Parliament praying that a pardon might be extended to him for his share in the rebellion; but the prayer was not granted until the 1st of February, 1849. A letter written by him shortly before this time gives us an insight into the effect produced upon him by over ten years' personal experience of republican institutions. "A course of careful observation," he says, "during the last eleven years, has fully satisfied me that, had the violent movements in which I and many others were engaged on both sides of the Niagara proved successful, that success would have deeply injured the people of [Pg 53]Canada, whom I then believed I was serving at great risks; that it would have deprived millions, perhaps, of our own countrymen in Europe of a home upon this continent, except upon conditions which, though many hundreds of thousands of immigrants have been constrained to accept them, are of an exceedingly onerous and degrading character. I have long been sensible of the errors committed during that period to which the intended amnesty applies. No punishment that power could inflict or nature sustain would have equalled the regrets I have felt on account of much that I did, said, wrote, and published; but the past cannot be recalled.... There is not a living man on this continent who more sincerely desires that British Government in Canada may long continue, and give a home and a welcome to the old countrymen, than myself."

He had long been sick of American institutions, and anxious to return to Canada. Soon after receiving his pardon he once more became a resident of Toronto, and in the spring of 1851 he was elected to Parliament as member for the county of Haldimand. He continued to sit for this constituency until August, 1858, when he resigned. As a member of the House he took an active part in public affairs, but owing partly to his advanced years, and partly to the great change which had taken place in Canadian politics during his long exile, he did not exercise the weight which he had been accustomed to exercise in former days. Soon after his resignation a public subscription was set on foot for the purpose of presenting him with a testimonial for his past services to the Reform party of Upper Canada. A homestead was purchased for him on Bond Street, Toronto, in which he lived out the three years of life which remained to him. The newspaper called Mackenzie's Weekly Message, alluded to in the early part of this sketch, was started by him soon after his return to Canada. It continued to be published at irregular intervals down to the spring of 1860, but was never a financial success. For several years previous to his death there was an evident failure of his powers, both physical and mental, and for some time before his last hour it was apparent to all his friends that his recovery was hopeless. He died on the 29th of August, 1861, at his own house in Toronto, at the age of 66.

Any dispassionate observer of Mr. Mackenzie's career must come to the conclusion that, notwithstanding many shortcomings and some grave faults, he was a man of great ability, true patriotism, and sterling integrity of purpose. His services to the people of Canada were great, and to many of them his name is dear. He himself lived to acknowledge that he had been guilty of a grievous error in inciting the people to rebellion; but at the time when he did so he believed rebellion to be the only remedy for the manifold evils under which the country groaned. He was wrong in his belief, and wrong in his acts founded upon that belief; but he was not altogether wrong. The ills of Canada were of a kind calling for strong remedies, and those who were most loud in denouncing "Mackenzie's Rebellion" were those who were chiefly responsible for the state of affairs which gave rise to it. Time, however, makes all things even. The Canadian people have long ago done justice to his memory, and have recognized the fact that among the names of those patriots who have manfully and conscientiously struggled for Canadian freedom, few deserve a higher place than that of William Lyon Mackenzie.

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The late Archbishop Connolly was born in the City of Cork, Ireland, in 1814. His parents, though obscure, were frugal, worthy people. When he had reached his third year, his father died, and he and a sister younger than himself were left to depend upon his mother, who, notwithstanding the slenderness of her means, contrived to give both of her children a tolerably good education. The boy was an apt scholar, quick and ready to learn, and he soon got on famously with his studies. Of striking appearance, and the possessor of a fascinating manner, he attracted much attention towards himself, and while yet very young he managed to win the good opinion of the eminent apostle of temperance, Father Mathew, who seemed drawn towards the lad by a sort of irresistible impulse. The reverend father's church was but a few doors beyond the home of young Connolly, and seeing his protégé attentive to the lessons of Christianity, and faithful in the performance of his religious duties, he lost no time in exhibiting to the youth proof after proof of his friendship and esteem. Such attentions had a marked effect on the susceptible mind of the future prelate, and he listened in wonder, admiration and love, to the kindly and sympathetic counsel of the priest. When Connolly had arrived at the age of sixteen, had mastered history and mathematics, and was well advanced in Greek, French and Latin, he became a novice in the Order of the Capuchins, through the instrumentality of his friend and benefactor. At the age of eighteen he went to Rome to continue and complete his studies for the priesthood. He remained in the Eternal City six years, devoting his attention to rhetoric, philosophy and theology. At the close of the term he proceeded to the south of France, and after a severe course of study, during which he greatly distinguished himself, he was finally ordained priest in 1838, at the cathedral of Lyons. In 1839 Connolly returned to the land of his birth, and for three years he laboured in the Capuchin Mission House, Dublin, and at the Grange Gorman Lane Penitentiary, to which latter institution he was appointed chaplain. In 1842 the Rev. Dr. Walsh was appointed Bishop of Halifax, N. S., and young Connolly, then in his twenty-eighth year, volunteered his services as secretary to the prelate, whom he was destined to succeed. He proceeded to the capital of Nova Scotia, and in 1845 became Vicar-General and Administrator of the diocese. Dr. Dollard, the much esteemed Bishop of St. John, N. B., died in 1851, and on the cordial recommendation of the American Bishops, Father Connolly was nominated Bishop of the commercial capital of New Brunswick—a position which he filled with characteristic zeal and tact. He found the Church in a state which required action of a prompt and vigorous nature. A heavy debt was upon the people, and they were [Pg 55]undergoing burdens which a less chivalrous congregation might not have tolerated. Poverty and suffering had kept them long under a cloud. In this condition Thomas Connolly found the members of the flock over whose spiritual destinies he had come to preside. He entered upon his work with great interest and activity, and during the seven years of his residence in St. John he accomplished many important undertakings in connection with his Church. He began the erection of the cathedral—a fine edifice which stands as a commanding monument of his priestly administration. He built the orphan asylum, and through his influence nuns were brought from abroad to conduct it. His administrative powers were great, and he thoroughly identified himself with even the minutest details of his office. In 1859, on the death of Archbishop Walsh, Pope Pius IX. appointed Bishop Connolly to succeed him. The Doctor, who was then a man of forty-five, sharp in intellect, keen in thought, and widened in experience, repaired to Halifax. He at once devoted himself to the enlargement of his sphere of usefulness. The Roman Catholic population of Nova Scotia was at this time in a state of open discord with Protestants. Ill feeling between the denominations was the rule rather than the exception, and much bitterness prevailed. To reconcile these difficulties was one of the first movements made by the Archbishop, and it is not too much to say that a considerable part of the friendly feeling which exists to-day among the Protestant and Roman Catholic population of Nova Scotia is due to the efforts of Archbishop Connolly, who in his time was the all-powerful head of his faith. He was hospitable, genial, and liberal-minded. He entertained lavishly, and in the exercise of the social element in his nature he never stopped to inquire the creed or the nationality of those who were invited to his table. Witty, eloquent, versed in the scriptures, dignified on occasion and undignified when it suited, and thoroughly acquainted always with the ways of the world, Archbishop Connolly was truly a many-sided man. He was respected by all for his learning; he was admired for his ready wit, even when—as was sometimes the case—it was out of season; he was loved for the goodness of heart which prompted him to many kindly acts; and even those who differed from him in religious thought had words of praise to bestow on the faithful character of his life work.

His name is prominently identified with the Free School movement in Halifax, the large building operations whereof were from time to time prosecuted under his auspices—for His Grace was an amateur architect and builder of no mean capacity. He took an active part in promoting the Confederation scheme, to carry which he entered into the contest with all his heart and soul. He even strove to influence the elections by means of pamphlets and letters which were couched in the very strongest and most convincing language. There were many co-religionists of His Grace, as well as many who were not of his faith, to condemn his action during the political excitement of 1866 and 1867 and later on, but he paid little heed to any of those who differed from him. A warm admirer of the late Hon. T. D'Arcy McGee, the Hon. Dr. Tupper, and other prominent politicians of the time, Archbishop Connolly espoused the Union cause, and did his utmost to win the people under his charge over to the side of those who advocated Confederation. He had, however, but indifferent success, the prejudices of the people triumphing over what many regarded as undue interference with those political rights and privileges which men believe to be the direct inheritance of good citizenship and righteous self-government. Archbishop Connolly was sincere in his belief in Confederation, and never once doubted, even in after years, the complete [Pg 56]wisdom of the movement. He took no further interest in political affairs, however, deeming, doubtless, that ecclesiastical interference was, to say the least of it, unwise, and fraught with danger to the interests of the Church. It is worth placing on record here the attitude which Dr. Connolly maintained in Rome, during the sitting of the Great Council which had been called together by the Pontiff, to determine the infallibility dogma. He viewed the dogma as a serious political mistake, and did not hesitate to express pretty freely his opinion regarding the trouble the adoption of such a measure would create in the civilized world, and which, in this century at least, the people were wholly unprepared to accept. He took a leading part in the memorable discussion which followed, and took pains to extend his views, both in the Council and out of it. He was over-ruled, however, by his brethren, and the decrees were proclaimed. Faithful in the observance of the laws of his Church, he submitted and accepted as part of his faith the dogma which decreed the Pope's infallibility. He was sincere in his belief, but his was no rebellious spirit, and when beaten in debate he yielded up his opposition, and submitted to the inevitable with what grace he could.

As a speaker, Dr. Connolly was a natural orator, full of a certain rude and homely eloquence. He had a way of reaching the masses, of touching their hearts and enlisting their sympathies by a word. He always spoke good sound sense, had no tricks of rhetoric, no theatrical manner. He was accounted one of the best extempore speakers of his day. He died suddenly of congestion of the brain, in Halifax, N. S., at midnight, on Thursday, July 27th, 1876, in the sixty-second year of his age.

Anna Jameson
Anna Jameson
Lith. by Rolph Smith Ltd Toronto from Photo by W. J. Topley, Ottawa

[Pg 57]



Mrs. Jameson was not a Canadian by birth, nor was her residence in this country sufficiently prolonged to make her a Canadian by force of sympathy. Her sojourn among us extended over a period of only about fifteen months, and when her term of exile came to an end she was very glad to shake our dust from her feet, and return to a more congenial clime. Still she carried away with her some not unkindly memories of our western wilderness, and did something towards making our scenery and institutions familiar to the reading world of Great Britain. She possessed the faculty of creating a strong interest in herself wherever she went; and though her own heart seems to have been to a considerable extent submerged in her intellect, she certainly succeeded in awakening many tendernesses in the hearts of others. There are persons still living in our midst to whom the memory of Anna Jameson is grateful, and who will doubtless be glad to learn more of her than can be learned from ordinary works of reference.

The story of her life is tinged with an atmosphere of sadness from first to last. Her father was a brilliant, unstable, impecunious young Irishman, by name Brownell Murphy, who at the time of her birth resided in Dublin. He was by profession a miniature painter, and had married an English wife. He was possessed of considerable talent in his artistic calling, but his success in life was impeded by his political tendencies, and that want of practical common sense which has been the besetting hindrance of so many of his countrymen. He was one of the "United Irishmen," an adherent of Robert Emmet and Lord Edward Fitzgerald. He escaped the disastrous fate which befell so many of his unhappy compatriots by a timely migration from his own country to England; but his sympathies remained on the side of the revolutionary party in Ireland, with some of the leaders of which he continued to maintain a questionable correspondence until the final collapse of their enterprises. His eldest daughter, the subject of this memoir, was born in Dublin, sometime in the year 1794.3 The removal to England took place in 1798, by which time the family responsibilities had been increased by the birth of two additional children, both daughters. The latter were left behind at nurse, near Dublin, but the eldest, Anna, accompanied her parents to England. They settled at the little seaport town of Whitehaven, on the coast of Cumberland, where the next four years of Anna Murphy's life were passed. Her little sisters still remained in Ireland, and [Pg 58]her life during this period must have been solitary and desolate enough, for her mother was frequently ill, and her father's professional pursuits rendered it necessary that he should frequently be away from home. Another little daughter was born during the residence at Whitehaven. Some of Anna's autobiographic reminiscences of this period, written in the maturity of her fame, have been preserved, and they give us a tolerably clear inkling as to what manner of child she was. It is evident that she was precocious, and that her temperament and disposition were not such as to give assurance of a happy future. "I was," she says, "an affectionate, but not, as I now think, a loveable or an attractive child. I did not, like the little Mozart, ask of every one around me, 'Do you love me?' The instinctive question was rather, 'Can I love you?' With a good temper there was the capacity of a strong, deep, silent resentment, and a vindictive spirit of rather a peculiar kind. I recollect that when one of those set over me inflicted what then appeared a most horrible injury and injustice, the thoughts of vengeance haunted my fancy for months." It is scarcely reassuring, after this, to read that the vengeance was not unmixed with magnanimity, and that she was wont to indulge in mental visions of her enemy's house on fire, and of herself darting through the flames to the rescue. She adds, "I always fancied evil and shame and humiliation to my adversary; to myself the rôle of superiority and gratified pride." A child of tender age, if its mind be perfectly healthy and wholesome, will hardly be given to the indulgence of such morbid thoughts as these; and when we read that such were the frequently-recurring daydreams of Anna Murphy at seven or eight years old, we are quite prepared to read of matrimonial infelicities and incompatibilities when she shall have grown to womanhood. Her parents do not appear to have fully comprehended or sympathized with her. It is probable that she was even somewhat neglected, and that her morbid tone of mind was unconsciously fostered by a want of perfect openness between her and her parents. Not that there would appear to have been any premeditated concealment on either side. It was simply this: that their natures were not acutely sympathetic, and that their circumstances made it incumbent upon the elders to pay more attention to the practical than to the sentimental side of life. The mother, cramped by a narrow income, and sometimes prostrated by feeble health, doubtless found sufficient employment for her time in her domestic cares. The father, though not unkind, was at least as much in love with his profession as with his family. Amid such environments was the childhood and youth of the future authoress permitted to develop itself.

In 1802 the family removed to Newcastle-on-Tyne. Here the father's pecuniary circumstances underwent a change for the better. The two little girls were brought over from Dublin, and the household became reunited. Next year another move was made, and the family settled down in the neighbourhood of London, whence, in 1806, they migrated to "the busy region of Pall-Mall." Here Anna, of her own free will, began to seriously bestir herself in the matter of her education. She worked hard, we are told, but fitfully, at French, Italian and other modern languages, in which she acquired what for her age was a high degree of proficiency. By way of variety she devoted herself to the history and romances of India, and made some progress with an original story on Oriental subjects called "Faizy." Here, again, her introspection furnishes us with further insight into her state of mind. She professes that she had very confused ideas about truth. "I had," she tells us, "a more distinct and absolute idea of honour than of truth ... I [Pg 59]knew very well, in a general way, that to tell a lie was wicked;" but "to lie for my own profit or pleasure, or to the hurt of others, was, according to my infant code of morals, worse than wicked—it was dishonourable." She admits, however, that she had no compunction about telling fictions for the purpose of exciting the enjoyment of her listeners. "In this respect," she adds, "Ferdinand Mendez Pinto, that liar of the first magnitude, was nothing in comparison to me. I must have been twelve years old before my conscience was first awakened to the necessity of truth as a principle." Her views on religious matters were equally confused and disjointed. It is fair to add, however, that her delinquencies were mental only. She was passionately fond of her little sisters, and was beloved by them in their turn. She sympathized with the pecuniary difficulties of her parents, and projected a girlish scheme for assisting them to make ends meet. She proposed that she and her sisters should at once set out for Brussels, learn the art of lace-making, achieve a fortune, retire from business, and set up a carriage and pair for their father and mother. A more practicable scheme for assisting her family, however, presented itself when she was about sixteen. She became a governess in the family of the Marquis of Winchester. How long she continued in that capacity we have no means of knowing, and for the next few years, owing to a lack of materials, her life presents to the biographer a mere blank. Her time, however, must have been industriously spent, for when next we meet her she is a woman of considerable learning, varied accomplishments, and wide reading, with a decided intellectual predominance over most of her friends and associates.

In the month of December, 1820, she first made the acquaintance of Mr. Robert S. Jameson, her future husband. He was then a young barrister, of good family, handsome appearance and fascinating manners. His powers of conversation were exceptionally brilliant, his morals irreproachable, and his learning much beyond that of the average even of professional men of his age. He was a native of the lake country, the protégé of Wordsworth, and the familiar friend of Coleridge and Southey. Miss Murphy was already somewhat of a bas-bleu, and was at once attracted by the handsome and accomplished young lawyer. It was the old story of Phyllis and Corydon over again. "His heart confessed a kindred flame." After a brief courtship a proposal of marriage was made in due form and accepted. Within a few weeks an estrangement ensued, and the engagement was broken off. The cause of this estrangement has never been fully made known, and is not now ascertainable. It was probably nothing more than a commonplace lover's quarrel, and acquired undue importance from subsequent events. It would probably have been better for both if all intercourse between Robert Jameson and Anna Murphy had permanently ended there and then. The next we know of the latter is that in the month of June, 1821, she accompanied a lady to France and Italy as governess to her daughter. During this tour, which lasted about a year, she kept a full diary of her wanderings and experiences, which was subsequently published, with some modifications, under the title of "The Diary of an Ennuyée." Soon after her return to England she accepted a situation as governess in the family of Mr. Littleton, M.P. for one of the ridings of Staffordshire, who was subsequently raised to the peerage by the title of Lord Hatherton, and whose grandson, Colonel Edward George Percy Littleton, is known to many Canadians through his residence in this country as Secretary to Lord Dufferin. She remained in Mr. Littleton's service about three years. During her last year of service [Pg 60]she again met her fate in the person of Mr. Jameson. The engagement, broken off in 1821, was now renewed, and the marriage soon afterwards took place.

Mrs. Jameson's biographer expresses the opinion that the marriage took place with every promise of mutual well-being. "The new husband and wife," says Mrs. Macpherson, "were of kindred tastes and accomplishments, fond of literature and of cultivated society, and though not rich, of sufficiently good prospects to justify their union in a time not quite so exacting in this respect as at present." As matter of fact, however, it is doubtful whether either of the parties to this contract could ever have enjoyed a large share of wedded bliss, even had each been more prudent in the selection of a partner for life. It was at any rate utterly impossible that two persons so constituted should get along happily together. Their marriage was a grievous mistake on both sides. Their community of literary and social tastes was altogether insufficient as a bond of union. They were both of them morbidly self-conscious, and neither had learned that great lesson so necessary to comfortable domestic existence—forbearance. Both were intellectually vain, and given to self-assertion. There were doubtless faults on both sides which have never been revealed to the world at large. Sufficient has been made known, however, to prove most incontestably that all the blame should not rest upon the wife, whose domestic trials began on the fourth day of her honeymoon. The marriage took place on a Wednesday, and the pair settled down in lodgings in Chenies Street, Tottenham Court Road. On the following Sunday the fond bridegroom announced his intention of going out to pass the day at the house of some friends with whom he had been accustomed to spend his Sundays in the time of his bachelorhood. Mrs. Jameson, who was unacquainted with these friends of her husband's, was not a little surprised at the announcement, and suggested the propriety of waiting until they had shown their wish to become acquainted with her by paying her a visit. "As you please," was the husband's reply, "but I shall go whether you accompany me or not," and began to prepare for his departure. We give the rest of the story in the words of Mrs. Jameson's biographer. "The bride of three or four days had to make up her mind. How could she intrude herself upon strangers. But supposing, on the other hand, that any friend of her own should come; any member of her family to congratulate her on her happiness, how could her pride bear to be found there alone and forsaken on the first Sunday of her married life? Accordingly, with an effort, she prepared herself, and set out with him in her white gown, forlorn enough, who can doubt? They had not gone far when it began to rain, and, taking advantage of this same white gown as a pretext for escaping from so embarrassing a visit, she declared it impossible to go further. 'Very well,' once more said the bridegroom; 'you have an umbrella. Go back, by all means; but I shall go on.' And so he did; and though received, as his astonished hosts afterwards related, with exclamations of bewilderment and consternation, calmly ate his dinner with them, and spent the rest of the evening until his usual hour with perfect equanimity and unconcern." Now, it is extremely probable that in this statement of the matter we have not the whole truth. There had doubtless been some petty little quarrel between the newly wedded pair, and we will give the bridegroom the benefit of taking it for granted that the bride had been most in fault. There is no evidence to support such an assumption, and the case may have been directly the reverse; but assuming everything in the husband's favour, his conduct was so selfish and mean as to be almost inhuman. [Pg 61]The history of domestic infelicity may be searched in vain for a more flagrant instance of marital cruelty. Griselda herself might have been excused for resenting such an exhibition of utter heartlessness. The man who could be guilty of such petty malignity was unfit to be entrusted with the happiness of any woman, and if Mrs. Jameson had left her husband then and there, we, for our part, would be the last to blame her. She seems, however, to have exercised on this occasion a most exemplary forbearance, and years of wedded unhappiness were yet in store for her.

There is no inducement to linger over this portion of the memoir. The husband and wife continued to dwell together for four years, during which period the latter produced two books, both of which are tolerably well known to lovers of literature. The "Diary" has already been referred to. It achieved considerable success, but the only recompense received by the author, in addition to the fame it brought her, was a Spanish guitar, the nominal value of which was ten guineas. The other book was "Loves of the Poets," which the Westminster Review rather vaguely pronounced to be "replete with the beautiful and unknown." It was published in 1829, and realized for the author something more than mere empty praise, though its sale was not large. Mr. Jameson's success in his profession, meanwhile, had not fulfilled his expectations, and during the same year he received an appointment to a puisné judgeship in the Island of Dominica, one of the British possessions in the West Indies. He went out to the trying climate of that island, leaving his wife behind him. It does not seem to have been contemplated by either of them that their separation should be permanent, though the skeleton in their domestic closet had attained such proportions as were barely endurable. Their union had not been blessed with children, nor was there any prospect of such fruition. Mrs. Jameson returned to the protection of her father's house, whence she shortly afterwards set out on a tour on the Continent, accompanied by her father and his patron Sir Gerard Noel. She was absent many months, and spent some time at Weimar, where she made the acquaintance of the family of Goëthe, and of other distinguished members of the Grand Duke's brilliant little coterie. Her impressions of this town were afterwards published under the title of "Visits and Sketches at Home and Abroad." In 1831 appeared her "Memoirs of the Lives of Celebrated Female Sovereigns," which still enjoys a limited share of popularity, more especially with female readers. The profits arising from her literary labours had now become a necessity, as her remittances from her husband were few and meagre, and she was compelled to contribute something to the support of her father and his family. In 1832 her "Characteristics of Women," a series of disquisitions on the female characters in Shakespeare's plays, appeared. Of this work, which has perhaps enjoyed a wider reputation than any of her literary productions, all that need be said is that it contains some criticism that is worth reading, and that its defects are largely redeemed by the easy grace of the style in which it is written. Just before the publication of the "Characteristics," the author supplied the letterpress to accompany a series of fine engravings of "The Windsor Beauties," as they are called—a magnificent collection of portraits painted by Sir Peter Lely for Charles II., depicting a number of the fair—and in many cases frail—habitués of that monarch's dissolute court. The paintings had been copied in miniature by Mrs. Jameson's father, by command of the Princess Charlotte, in whose household Mr. Murphy had held the appointment of Painter in Enamel, from the year 1810. These, with several additions, were now engraved and [Pg 62]published, under the title of "Beauties of the Court of Charles II." Mrs. Jameson's sparkling letterpress lent additional charms to a singularly attractive work. It has several times been republished, and early editions of it command a high price among lovers of choice books. Its publication was undertaken entirely for Mr. Murphy's benefit, but, though it added somewhat to Mrs. Jameson's reputation, the cost of production was very great, and the profits were little or nothing.

Mr. Jameson, meanwhile, had not found his position in the West Indies much to his liking, and had never asked his wife to join him there. Early in 1833 he resigned his judgeship and returned to England, where he took up his quarters with his wife at the house of Mrs. Bate, a married sister of the latter's. In a few weeks he succeeded in obtaining an appointment as Speaker of the House of Assembly of Upper Canada, and took his departure from London for Toronto—or York, as it was then called. It was arranged between the husband and wife that a home should forthwith be provided in the little provincial capital, and that Mrs. Jameson should be sent for. She had long ago ceased to place much dependence on her lord's word, however, and we can hardly blame her if she did not feel for him much wifely affection. She devoted herself to her literary pursuits with fresh assiduity, and set out on another continental expedition. She spent some time in Germany, where she found a warm welcome in the best social and literary circles, and formed the acquaintance of Retzsch and Ludwig Tieck. She kept up an occasional correspondence with her husband, but no time was arranged for her joining him in Canada, and their letters were wonderfully stilted and formal. After a considerable stay in Germany she returned to London, where she was a sort of literary lioness, and a decided social success. She supported herself meanwhile by her pen, and had acquired a genuine love for her literary calling. She became acquainted with Lady Byron, and their acquaintance soon ripened into a friendship which lasted nearly twenty years. In the spring of 1834 a letter arrived from Mr. Jameson in which he at last expressed his desire that his wife should join him in Canada. She, however, had formed other projects, and felt quite independent of her husband. She had received overtures from first-class publishers to undertake literary work which would be both congenial and profitable. She, a childless wife, did not conceive it to be her duty to forego the many advantages she enjoyed, merely to take up her abode in an American wilderness, as the companion of "a cold and self-sufficing man, to whose happiness she never seemed to be necessary except when the Atlantic flowed between." In reply to his injunction she wrote to him evasively; and this brought from him a letter conceived in a much warmer strain than he had been wont to use. "Dearest Anna," he writes; "let me look forward to our meeting with hope. Let me not lose the privilege of loving you, and the hope of being loved by you. Let me come to my solitary home with the prospect that my daily labours shall, before any very lengthened day of trial, be rewarded by your presence and your most precious endearments. I have no single hope that does not depend on this one. Do not school your heart against me, and I will compel you to love me. I have been fencing-in my nice little piece of ground on the banks of the lake, where I am promising myself the happiness of building you a pretty little villa after your own taste. I have set a man to plant some trees and shrubs also, for the place was quite denuded, though by far the finest situation in the town. I have ground enough for a pretty extensive garden, nearly three acres." Again, in the following spring (May, [Pg 63]1835,) he writes: "My hopes of receiving you in a house of your own have been for the present thwarted—I have not the requisite money. But I have the ground, which I trust I shall not be driven to sacrifice, because I should never meet with so pleasant a situation; and before long I trust still to have a nice cottage, at all events, upon it. And then, what portion of happiness we enjoy in it depends upon you, dearest Anna; and I think you will not wilfully shut it out of doors, merely because it may be a better fate than I deserve." He had by this time ceased to be Speaker of the Assembly, having been appointed Attorney-General; but his wife was left to learn this fact how she might, and there is no allusion to his improved circumstances in his correspondence. The letters from which the foregoing quotations are made were such as to require that she should make up her mind. She seems, however, to have been very deliberate, and did not reply until the lapse of some months. An extract from her reply will give a better idea of the fathomless abyss that lay between this ill-mated husband and wife than any description could afford. In his last epistle he had referred to his solitariness and great need of her; jocularly adding that he intended erelong to take another wife. She writes: "You say it is your intention to marry again. My Dear Robert, jesting apart, I wish it only depended on me to give you that power. You might perhaps be happy with another woman. A union such as ours is, and has been ever, is a real mockery of the laws of God and man. You have the power to dispose of our fate as far as it depends on each other. I placed that power in your hands ... and had you used that power in a decided manly spirit, whether to unite or to part us, I had respected you the more, and would have arranged my life accordingly. But what an existence is this to which you have reduced us both! If you can make up your mind to live without me—if your vague letters signify a purpose of this kind—for God's sake speak the truth to me; but if, on the other hand, it is your purpose to remain in Canada, to settle there under any political change, and your real wish to have me with you and make another trial for happiness, tell me so distinctly and decidedly—tell me at what time to leave England—tell me what things I ought to take with me ... what kind of life I shall live, that I may come prepared to render my own existence and yours as pleasant as possible."

To this letter the husband replied, imperatively enjoining the wife to come out to him; and in compliance with the injunction she sailed for New York in September, 1836. Upon reaching New York, contrary to what she had been led to expect, she found no one to meet her, and was compelled to make the remainder of the journey alone. She made her way to Toronto via Albany to Queenston, and thence by steamer. She reached her destination at an unexpected time, and by an unexpected boat, so that there was no one at the wharf to meet her. When she landed from the steamer she stepped from the boat into a street ankle-deep in mud, and walked through the desolate roads to her husband's abode, more than a mile distant. The house of the Attorney-General was situated near the foot of the west side of Brock street. The place had been first enclosed and ornamentally planted by Mr. Jameson, as related in one of the foregoing extracts. Her husband's neglect, and the desolate circumstances which attended her first appearance in Toronto, gave her a distaste to the place which she never entirely overcame. She has left a picture of the capital of Upper Canada as it appeared to her in that dreary autumn of 1838. She describes it as strangely mean and melancholy: "A little ill-built town on low land, at the bottom [Pg 64]of a frozen bay, with one very ugly church without tower or steeple;" (this was the St. James's Cathedral of those days;) "some Government offices built of staring red brick, in the most tasteless vulgar style imaginable;" (the present Parliament buildings;) "three feet of snow all around, and the grey, sullen, uninviting lake, and the dark gloom of the pine forest bounding the prospect. Such seems Toronto to me now. I did not expect much, but for this I was not prepared." To do her justice, she seems to have done her utmost for some time to rouse herself from the gloom which beset her, and to render her home agreeable to her lord and master. But she was altogether out of harmony with her environment, and the attempt was a failure. She was insufferably bored by the society in which she found herself; and her discomfort was increased by repeated attacks of ague. Her native enthusiasm could not even be roused by a visit which she paid to Niagara in the depth of winter. She was so disappointed at the effect produced upon her by the sight of the roaring abyss that she regretted having gone near it. She would have preferred that it had remained a "Yarrow Unvisited." A subsequent visit during the early summer tended to restore the mighty cataract to her favour, but as yet she beheld everything through a jaundiced medium, and could not work herself up to the point of admiration. Before spring arrived, Mr. Jameson was elevated to a seat on the Judicial Bench. He became Vice-Chancellor, the Chancellorship being vested in the Crown. "He is now at the top of the tree," writes Mrs. Jameson to her sister in England, "and has no more to expect or aspire to. I think he will make an excellent Chancellor; he is gentlemanlike, cautious, and will stick to precedents, and his excessive reserve is here the greatest of possible virtues. No one loves him, it is true; but every one approves him, and his promotion has not caused a murmur." A few lines lower down in the same letter she adds: "The house is very pretty and compact, and the garden will be beautiful, but I take no pleasure in anything. The place itself, the society, are so detestable to me, my own domestic position so painful, and so without remedy or hope, that to remain here would be the death of me. My plan is to help Jameson in arranging his house, and, when the spring is sufficiently advanced, to make a tour through the western districts up to Lake Huron. Towards the end of the year I trust by God's mercy to be in England." One of the most disagreeable features about the whole of this unhappy business is Mrs. Jameson's disposition to take her relatives, and even the world at large, into her confidence on the subject of her domestic unhappinesses. She had much to bear, it is true, and must often and often have been aweary of life; but she was unquestionably in some respects an unwomanly woman. She had not that fortitude which frequently belongs to nobler, if less intellectual, natures, and which teaches them to suffer and be silent. For such natures, we doubt not, she entertained an unmeasured contempt. Her love for her husband, if it had ever existed, was dead. She despised him, and unlike George Eliot, she did not recognize the fact that the woman who willingly lifts up the veil of her married life thereby profanes it from a sanctuary into a vulgar place.

The programme which she had sketched out for herself was carried into effect in all essential particulars. She made a western expedition through the Upper Canadian peninsula; succeeded in obtaining an interview with the eccentric Colonel Talbot at the Port named after him; passed on up Lake Huron, and ran the Sault Ste. Marie in a birch-bark canoe; saw a good deal of wild rough life among the Indians; and [Pg 65]thus consumed about two months of glorious summer weather. She returned to Toronto in the early autumn, and soon afterwards took a final farewell of the Chancellor. We find her, towards the close of the year (1837), sojourning at Stockbridge, Massachusetts, as the guest of Miss Catherine Maria Sedgwick, the American authoress. She was lionized by the hospitable literary people of New England during her stay among them, which lasted till February, 1838, when she sailed for England. She bore with her a missive from her husband expressing his acquiescence in a permanent separation. "My Dear Anna:"—thus it runs—"In leaving Canada to reside among your friends in England or elsewhere, you carry with you my most perfect respect and esteem. My affection you will never cease to retain. Were it otherwise I should feel less pain at consenting to an arrangement arising from no wish of mine, but which I am compelled to believe is best calculated for your happiness, and which therefore I cannot but approve." The husband and wife never met again.

And this was the unhappy end of it. During the rest of his life the husband allowed her a separate income of £300 a year, which, added to her own literary gains, made a sufficient sum to enable her to maintain herself with comfort. But her parents long continued to be more or less dependent upon her, and it must be confessed that she was ever ready to minister to their necessities to the utmost of her power. Upon her arrival in England she took up her abode with her sister, Mrs. Bate, and soon afterwards brought out her "Winter Studies and Summer Rambles in Canada," a work which was received with much favour on two continents, and which, for Canadian readers, is by far the most interesting of all her contributions to literature. It deals with her Canadian and United States experiences at full length, and is written in a lively, animated style, which makes it very pleasant reading, more especially for persons familiar with the society and scenes described. Her own individuality, however, is constantly intruded; sometimes with an effusiveness so great as to be almost offensive. The book was reprinted in the United States, and obtained a wide circle of readers there. It has since been reprinted in England, in a somewhat abridged form, under the title of "Sketches in Canada, and Rambles among the Red Men."

With the publication of this work the chief interest in Mrs. Jameson's life, for Canadian readers, may be said to have come to an end. We have space for only a very brief account of her subsequent career, which was almost entirely devoted to literary pursuits, and incidentally to some important social reforms. She spent much of her time on the continent, and explored the principal art galleries of Germany, Italy and France with a never-failing enthusiasm. She wrote several works on art and kindred topics which have done much to create a taste for, and diffuse a knowledge of, artistic productions. The best known of these are "Memoirs of the Early Italian Painters," "Memoirs and Essays on Art, Literature and Social Morals," "Sacred and Legendary Art," "Legends of the Monastic Orders," and "Legends of the Madonna." She also published several less ambitious, but extremely valuable works, in the shape of a series of handbooks to various artistic collections. She numbered among her friends and correspondents many of the most distinguished authors of the day. As might have been expected, she developed into a vigorous exponent of the rights of her sex; exerted herself to get the schools of design opened to women; interested herself warmly in the cause of female education; and did much, by her writings and example, to stimulate the thought of her day on the question of an enlarged sphere of duty for members of her sex. She cultivated a close intimacy [Pg 66]with Lady Byron, and a warm friendship subsisted between them until the year 1853, when Her Ladyship took mortal offence at her friend for a trivial cause, and hated her most cordially ever afterwards. For some years, however, Mrs. Jameson was one of Lady Byron's most trusted friends, and the recipient of her most cherished secrets. She was doubtless one of the twenty-and-odd "tried friends" to whom the poet's widow—the woman "perfect past all parallel"—disclosed her morbid imaginings about her dead lord. If so, Mrs. Jameson proved faithful to her trust, and no great harm was done. Unfortunately, as we all know, Her Ladyship, in a moment of even more than usually misplaced confidence, told her horrible chimaera to a woman from Massachusetts: a woman of prying curiosity, prurient fancy, and slanderous tongue. The result was that within a few years after Lady Byron had been laid in her grave the world was entertained with the horrible story—a story so utterly vile and disgusting that we must go to the records of the Beecher family to find anything approaching it in infamy.

Mrs. Jameson's father died in March, 1842, leaving her mother and two daughters entirely dependent upon her for support; as, indeed, they had been for some years previously. She acquitted herself of her responsibility with praiseworthy courage, and did her utmost to provide for them out of her own moderate store. In 1851 a Crown pension was obtained for her through the good offices of Lord Stanley of Alderley and Lord John Russell. The spring of the year 1854 was rendered noteworthy to her by the death of her mother; and in the autumn of the same year she received from Canada intelligence of her husband's death. Some particulars as to the latter years of Mr. Jameson's life in Canada will be found in the sketch of the life of the Hon. William Hume Blake, included in the present series. Some time previously he had prevailed upon his wife to surrender to him the legal papers by which her annuity from him was secured. It had been represented to her that the surrender was desired by Mr. Jameson with a view to securing the income to her after his death. She now learned that no provision whatever had been made for her, and that she was deprived of the income upon which she had learned to depend. Through the influence of the Procters and other friends at this juncture a sum was raised which obtained for her an income of £100 a year for the remainder of her life. She was destined to benefit by this arrangement only a little more than five years. In 1857 her health began perceptibly to give way. The climate of Italy did something to restore the natural buoyancy of her spirits, but she never again recovered more than a very moderate share of physical health. She returned to London, and continued to engage in literary labours beyond her strength. Early in March, 1860, she caught a severe cold from exposure to a cutting snow-storm, while walking from the British Museum to her lodgings. She was prostrated by fever, and rapidly sank into her grave. She died on the 17th of the month, and was buried in the cemetery at Kensal Green, that final resting-place of so many persons whose names are eminent in English literature.

D. H. McVicar
D. H. McVicar

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The Principal of the Presbyterian College, Montreal, was born on the 29th of November, 1831, at Dunglass, near Campbelltown, in the peninsula of Kintyre, Argyllshire, Scotland. His parents emigrated to Canada when he was only four years of age, and took up their abode in the county of Kent, near the site of the present town of Chatham. He received his earliest education under an efficient private tutor, and later on became a student at the Toronto Academy, which was then conducted by the Rev. Alexander Gall, M.A., an excellent teacher and disciplinarian. He also attended for some time as a student at the University of Toronto. He received his theological training at Knox College, under the supervision of the late Dr. Willis, Dr. Burns, and Professor G. P. Young. For nearly two years before he obtained his license authorizing him to preach, he officiated as a preceptor in a private academy conducted by his brother, on Gould Street, Toronto, opposite the Normal school. Here he instructed the pupils in Greek, Latin and English. His first preaching was done at Collingwood, in the county of Simcoe, in the summer of 1858. During the following year he obtained from the Toronto Presbytery of the Canada Presbyterian Church a license to preach the Gospel. He officiated for some time in a hall in the west end of Toronto, where he received much assistance in the general work of the congregation, and especially in the Sabbath School, from the Hon. John McMurrich. Soon afterwards he was appointed by the Committee on Foreign Missions to undertake a mission to British Columbia, which mission, however, he declined to accept. He also received and declined calls to Erin, Bradford and Collingwood. He was earnestly solicited by the congregation over which he officiated in Toronto—where he was much beloved—to remain there, but he ultimately decided to accept a pressing and unanimous call which had been extended to him by the congregation of Knox Church at Guelph. Having accepted this call he entered with energy and zeal upon the work of his charge. He found the congregation much run down, and used his utmost endeavours to bring about a more prosperous state of things. His efforts were crowned with success. During the single year of his pastorate fifty-two members were added, and other work of the church was advanced fully in proportion to the increased membership. His abilities as a preacher and pastor were destined speedily to obtain recognition from other congregations, and towards the close of 1860 he received a call from the Cote Street Free Church, Montreal, as successor to Dr. Fraser, now of London, England. This was then, and is still, one of the leading Presbyterian churches in the country. He accepted the call, and was inducted into his new pastorate on the 30th of January, 1861. He discharged [Pg 68]the responsible duties of this important pastorate with marked ability and success for nearly eight years. During this period the congregation reached the highest point it has ever attained, both in numbers and efficiency—the membership having nearly doubled. Here, too, his eminent abilities as a teacher enabled him to draw together and hold with unflagging interest one of the largest Bible classes in the country. He carried his people with him heartily into the work of church extension, founding several Mission Sunday Schools, two of which have since grown into self-supporting congregations. In 1868 the Synod appointed him Professor of Divinity in the Presbyterian College, Montreal. This institution was then in its feeblest beginnings, with no endowment, no books, no building, and only five or six students. After about four months' consideration he undertook the duties of his new office. His congregation unanimously bore testimony by public resolution to their unabated esteem for him, and to their appreciation of his ability and uniform fidelity in pulpit and pastoral work. For about four years the College work had to be carried on in the basement of Erskine Church. At the present day the institution stands upon a very different footing. It now has a fine, handsome building, a valuable library of over seven thousand volumes, a partial endowment, and an efficient staff of Professors and Lecturers; and its last report to the General Assembly shows a larger roll of theological students than any other college in the church. These facts speak for themselves, and show that the Synod and others were not mistaken in predicting for him success in the great work of founding a college in Montreal.

His official duties in connection with the College did not prevent his employing himself usefully in other fields. For six years he had charge, as Moderator of Session, of Cote Street Church, and to him the congregation mainly owe it that they were carried unitedly through protracted vacancies in the pastorate, and through the building of their present magnificent edifice, the cost of which exceeded $120,000. The work done during this period was fraught with no ordinary difficulty both to Dr. McVicar and the congregation. The former's unwearied efforts, tact, and personal influence with the members contributed very largely to preserve the congregation unbroken in removing to the new church, and thus the interests of Presbyterianism in Montreal and beyond it were greatly promoted.

Principal McVicar has long taken the deepest interest in the work of French Evangelization. By overture to the Presbytery of Montreal and the Synod he originated the work of training French and English speaking missionaries and ministers, and organized the Presbyterian French work which has since been so successful. At the last General Assembly he secured the appointment in the College over which he presides of a French Professor of Theology. He has within the last year taken the initiative in Canada in establishing a Lectureship for the cultivation of Celtic Literature, and it is hoped that this may be developed into a fully endowed chair. He also served many years on the Protestant Board of School Commissioners in Montreal, and was Chairman at the time of his retirement last year. His services in this connection have been invaluable to the cause of education in Montreal—a fact frankly and repeatedly acknowledged by his fellow-citizens and the local press. A writer in one of the local journals not long since spoke of his published lectures and addresses on various questions educational and theological as entitling him to be ranked among the most vigorous thinkers of his time. Some of his educational works have already taken their places as standard text books, and [Pg 69]have received the highest commendations from educators and from the press. These consist, among others, of two arithmetics, the one primary, and the other of a more advanced character, both of which have been introduced into the schools of the Province of Quebec, and authorized by the Minister of Education for Ontario. Among his other publications, those best known are his lectures respectively on Inspiration; Miracles; The Constitution of the Church; The Sabbath Law; Modern Scepticism; Moral Culture; The Teacher in his Study and Class-room; Romanism in Quebec; Hindrances and Helps to Presbyterianism, etc., together with sermons on various occasions. In 1876 he delivered a course of twenty lectures on Applied Logic before the Ladies' Educational Association of Montreal; and in 1878 a similar course on Ethics before the same Association. He has devoted some time to the study of certain branches of Medical Science, especially Anatomy and Physiology, in both of which he still takes a more than ordinary interest, as bearing upon the direction taken by recent scientific discussions. During one session he was Lecturer on Logic to McGill University, Montreal. He is a Fellow of McGill College, and in 1870 received the highest honour in its gift—the degree of LL.D. honoris causa. He has been a member of every General Assembly of his Church, where he exerts a powerful influence in guiding her councils and moulding her decisions in all important matters of doctrine and practice. He was appointed by the General Assembly a member of the first General Presbyterian Council which met at Edinburgh in 1877, and also of the one to meet at Philadelphia during the current year. He is not given to putting himself conspicuously forward as a speaker in Church Courts, but has always spoken vigorously in advocacy of what he has believed to be right measures, irrespective of any consideration as to whether his advocacy might conduce to his popularity. He is known to have definite opinions, and is always able to give a reason for them. As a preacher he may be described as exegetical and eminently practical, drawing his illustrations largely from Biblical sources and the surroundings and occupations of his hearers. He delivers his discourses with much animation and force, and seems to delight in pulpit work, as he frequently appears at the opening of churches, rendering service to his brethren, and even beyond his own denomination. While no believer in a vague and nondescript theology, he is anything but sectarian in his conceptions of the constitution of the Church, and has shown himself ready to work most cordially with all who profess Christianity. It may also be noted that he is a powerful advocate on the temperance platform, and has contributed much to the social enlightenment of the poor of his city.

He has been compelled to do the heaviest part of the financing on behalf of the College, and considering the small field to which his labours have been restricted his success has been almost marvellous. He is still required to teach Systematic Theology, Homiletics and Pastoral Theology, and Church Government.

A few years since he received a pressing call from the congregation of South Church, Brooklyn, and was offered a salary of $7,000 a year by way of inducement to accept it. He declined, however, to sever the associations which have hitherto bound him to Montreal and Canada, where he has exercised so great an influence for good.

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The late Mr. Draper achieved high position in various walks of life. While still in early youth he took a conspicuous place at the Bar of Upper Canada, and acquired an enviable reputation at a time when that Bar numbered among its ranks many persons of marked forensic ability. As a politician he also attained a foremost place, and for more than two years was, as matter of fact, the real "power behind the throne." His political career, however, though it was marked by characteristics sufficiently salient, and was eminently successful in procuring for him power and influence, was on the whole not such as to commend itself to persons of modern ideas. His politics were the politics of a past time. It is not in the rôle of a politician that those who cherish his memory like best to think of him, and it is not upon his political achievements that his highest claims to regard must rest. His judicial career, on the other hand, was not only one of singular brilliancy, but was destined to leave a distinct and permanent mark upon Canadian jurisprudence. As a judge, William Henry Draper occupies a place in the legal history of this country of which any man might justly feel proud. He was a profound and learned lawyer, who felt the grave responsibilities of his high position, and his written judgments will long continue to be cited with the respect due to great legal acumen, keen power of discrimination, and a remarkably capacious mind.

He was an Englishman by birth and early education, having been born on the 11th of March, 1801, in one of the Surrey suburbs of London. His father, the Rev. Henry Draper, was a clergyman of the Church of England, and was for some years incumbent of one of those many metropolitan churches which seem, in these days, to have survived their practical usefulness. He was rector of St. Anthony's—corruptly called St. Antholin's—in Watling Street, in the very heart of the city, and almost within the shadow of the great dome of St. Paul's. Subsequently he became incumbent of a rectory at South Brent, in Devonshire. It was during his incumbency of St. Anthony's that his son, the subject of this sketch, was born. The latter is said to have run away to sea, like other spirited lads, when he had scarcely entered his teens. At all events he embarked in a seafaring life, as cadet on board an East Indiaman. When he was about eighteen years of age he abandoned maritime pursuits, and soon afterwards emigrated to Canada, whither he arrived in the early summer of 1820, he being then in his twentieth year. He engaged in his first employment at Port Hope, in the capacity of a school-teacher, but did not find that pursuit much to his taste, and in 1823 began the study of the law in the office of Mr. Thomas Ward, a local practitioner of some repute in those days. How long he remained in the office of Mr. Ward does not appear, but in 1825 we find him a student in the office of the [Pg 71]Hon. George Somerville Boulton, at Cobourg. He was soon afterwards appointed Deputy-Registrar of the United Counties of Northumberland and Durham. While holding this office, and before he had completed his legal studies, he married the estimable lady who was his companion through more than half a century of his subsequent life, and who still survives him. She was Miss White, daughter of Captain George White, of the Royal Navy. On the 16th of June, 1828, he was called to the Bar of Upper Canada, and soon afterwards resigned his Deputy-Registrarship. He had always possessed a vigorous constitution, and was of robust habits. While holding the office last named he resided at Port Hope. His duties required his daily attendance at the Registry Office, which was at Cobourg, seven miles distant. In those days there was no railway, and the stage did not run at seasonable hours, so that Mr. Draper was commonly accustomed to make the journey both ways on foot—a custom involving at least fourteen miles of pedestrian exercise daily.

Almost immediately after his call to the Bar he removed to Toronto. The Hon. John Beverley Robinson, who was then Attorney-General, having occasion to be in Cobourg on official business, had made the young man's acquaintance, and had been much impressed by the manner in which the latter had prepared a brief for trial. Mr. Robinson offered young Draper a place in his office, and the offer was readily accepted. He continued to have his home in Toronto from that time till his death. On the 18th of November, 1829, he was appointed Reporter to the Court of King's Bench, an office which he held for a period of about eight years. In 1830 he was appointed a Bencher of the Law Society, and in 1842 he was created a Queen's Counsel, along with Robert Baldwin, Henry John Boulton, Henry Sherwood, and James Edward Small, with a patent of precedence. He was by this time recognized as one of the leaders of the Bar in this Province, and enjoyed a large and lucrative practice.

He entered political life soon after the arrival of Francis Bond Head in Upper Canada, which took place early in 1836. During the following summer Mr. Draper was elected a member of the Legislative Assembly by the city of Toronto, and towards the close of the year, at the Governor's request, he accepted a place in the Executive Council without a portfolio. On the 23rd of the following March he became Solicitor-General of Upper Canada, and continued to hold that office through the stormy period of the rebellion, and subsequently until the Administration of Mr. Thomson—afterwards Lord Sydenham. During his tenure of office as Deputy-Registrar, at Cobourg, he had held a colonel's commission in the county of Durham, and in 1838 he was appointed colonel of a York battalion. During the rebellion he served as an aide-de-camp to Sir George Arthur. While holding office as Solicitor-General, in 1840, he introduced a measure for the settlement of the vexed question of the Clergy Reserves. It passed the Assembly, but was rejected by the Council. Upon the resignation of Mr. Hagerman, Mr. Draper succeeded that gentleman as Attorney-General, and held that office at the time of the consummation of the Union of the two Provinces in 1841. He was succeeded in the office of Solicitor-General by Robert Baldwin, who consented to enter the Ministry at the urgent request of the Governor-General, and upon the supposition that the Government was to be carried on in accordance with the principles of Responsible Government. The history of the various administrations of the next few years, and of Mr. Draper's share in them, has already been given in various sketches included in this series. Though not a member of the Family Compact, he was a Conservative of the most [Pg 72]pronounced cast, and had no sympathy with the Reform projects for which Mr. Baldwin and his colleagues so earnestly contended. It was impossible that any Ministry containing such incongruous materials as Robert Baldwin and William Henry Draper could be of long duration. The former resigned at the opening of the next session of Parliament; the latter continued to hold office. Upon the accession of Sir Charles Bagot, and the formation of the Baldwin-Lafontaine Government, Mr. Draper was of course compelled to resign. Then came Sir Charles Metcalfe, and Mr. Baldwin's Ministry took its turn at resignation. It was at this crisis that Mr. Draper came conspicuously to the front. On the 10th of April, 1843, he had been created a Legislative Councillor. He now resigned his place in the Upper House, and became Premier, with the portfolio of Attorney-General. With much difficulty, and after long delay, he succeeded in forming his Provisional Government. He himself, and his two colleagues, Dominick Daly and D. B. Viger, divided the ten Cabinet offices among them, and dragged through the session as best they could. It is to be feared that for much of the mischief wrought by the Governor-General during this unhappy period, Mr. Draper must be held largely responsible. As has been said, he was "the power behind the throne." The plain English of the matter is that Responsible Government was a myth, and the tide of progress was effectually stemmed. This state of things lasted until after Lord Metcalfe's departure from our shores—and in fact until after the arrival of Lord Elgin, for Earl Cathcart merely administered the necessary functions of Government during the interval, and did not in any way attempt to interfere in the disputes of the rival political parties.

In the summer following Lord Elgin's arrival in Canada, and before the general election which ensued, Mr. Draper wisely withdrew from political life, and accepted a seat on the Judicial Bench. He became a Puisné Judge of the Court of Queen's Bench, as successor to Mr. Justice Hagerman, deceased. His appointment took place on the 12th of June, 1847, and he retained the position till February 5th, 1856, when he succeeded Sir James Macaulay as Chief Justice of the Common Pleas. This latter position he filled for seven years. In the month of July, 1863, he became Chief Justice of Upper Canada, as successor to the Hon. Archibald McLean, who then succeeded to the Presidency of the Court of Appeal, rendered vacant by the death of the Hon. Sir John Beverley Robinson, on the 31st of January previous. Mr. Draper remained Chief Justice of Upper Canada until February, 1869, when he in turn became President of the Court of Error and Appeal. This position he continued to hold up to the time of his death, which took place at his home in Yorkville, a suburb of Toronto, after a lingering illness, on the 3rd of November, 1877.

In the foregoing rapid enumeration of the high judicial honours achieved at various times by Mr. Draper, it has been omitted to mention that, in 1854, the ribbon of a Companion of the Bath was conferred upon him. It is said that he was several times offered the dignity of knighthood, but declined. The only other important event to be chronicled is the fact that in 1857, while he was Chief Justice of the Common Pleas, he visited England on a mission from the Canadian Government in relation to the North-West Territories. The Chief Justice had a numerous family, of whom only two survive him. One of these, Major Frank Draper, is the present Chief of Police in this city.

Charles Tupper
Charles Tupper
Lith. by Rolph Smith Ltd Toronto from Photo by W. Notman, Montreal

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Sir Charles Tupper, who, prior to his receiving the honour of knighthood last year, was best known by his professional title of Doctor Tupper, is of U. E. Loyalist stock. He is descended from a German family formerly resident in the electorate of Hesse-Cassel. Sometime during the early part of the eighteenth century the family removed to the Island of Guernsey, in the English Channel, where one of its members formed an alliance by marriage with the old Saxon family of Brock—the family to which Sir Isaac Brock, the hero of Queenston Heights, belonged. A few years later, one branch of the Tupper family emigrated to Virginia, and settled in the neighbourhood of Jamestown, whither some of their friends from Guernsey had preceded them. Upon the breaking out of the Revolutionary War the Tuppers of Virginia espoused the British side, and after the cessation of hostilities "the Old Dominion" could no longer be a comfortable home for them. Like hundreds of their compatriots, they removed to British territory, and took up their abode in Nova Scotia, where the Rev. Charles Tupper, the father of the subject of this memoir, was born on the 6th of August, 1794. This gentleman, who has reached the venerable age of eighty-six years, is still living, and in the full enjoyment of all his faculties. He has had a highly useful and honourable career, and is regarded as one of the patriarchs of his native Province. He is a Doctor of Divinity, and an accomplished linguist, and was at one time Principal of the Baptist Seminary at Fredericton. He edited the Baptist Missionary Magazine from 1827 to 1832, and is the author of several works on temperance and polemical subjects, the best known of which is a volume entitled "Baptist Principles Vindicated," published at Halifax in 1844.

Sir Charles Tupper is the eldest son of the reverend gentleman above referred to, and was born at Amherst, Nova Scotia, on the 2nd of July, 1821. After attending various public and private schools he completed his education at Horton Academy and Acadia College. From the latter seat of learning he obtained the degree of M.A. He chose the medical profession as his calling in life, and after studying for some time in his native Province he crossed the Atlantic, and graduated in medicine at the University of Edinburgh. He also became a member of the famous Royal College of Surgeons of that city in 1843. Immediately afterwards he returned to Nova Scotia and began the practice of his profession in his native town of Amherst, which is the capital of Cumberland County. Three years later he married Miss Frances Morse, a daughter of a gentleman resident at Amherst. This lady, who still survives, has always been in the true sense of the word a helpmeet to her husband, and has taken an exceptionally [Pg 74]warm interest in the advancement of his successful political career.

From 1843 to 1855 Dr. Tupper's chief business in life was to thoroughly establish himself in his profession. In this he was eminently successful. He not only secured a large and lucrative medical practice, and amassed considerable wealth, but won a much higher reputation for professional skill than commonly falls to the lot of a young practitioner in a provincial town. He is, however, a man of remarkably sound constitution and great energy of character, and his professional pursuits did not so entirely engross his time as to exclude a warm interest in the Provincial politics. Like his father, he was a Conservative, both politically and socially, and entered into the local electioneering contests with much zest. Though his partizanship was never violent or bitter—at least in those days—he had the courage of his opinions, and regard for his professional interests never kept him silent when he could serve his party by speaking his mind. Apart from politics he was in every sense of the word a popular and distinguished man. He had a fine and commanding presence; was well educated, even for a professional man; could discourse volubly and cleverly on the topics of the day; and was not so terribly in earnest about anything as to provoke bitter animosities on the part of those who did not adopt his views. The adherents of the Conservative Party began to look upon him as an eligible candidate for Parliament. In 1855 a general election took place in Nova Scotia, and, in response to the pressing solicitations of his political friends he allowed himself to be put in nomination as a candidate for the county of Cumberland. It was a venture of considerable temerity on his part, for his opponent was the late Hon. Joseph Howe. Mr. Howe had already sat in the Assembly for that constituency. He was the most eloquent, and in many respects the ablest man in Nova Scotia, and was then at the height of his fame. That a young and successful professional man like Dr. Tupper, to whom political life was in no respect a necessity, should court defeat by opposing so redoubtable a candidate, was considered an exhibition of presumption and foolhardiness. The great Liberal leader himself was for some time disposed to make light of the opposition, but when the day of nomination arrived it was apparent that the impending contest would not be so one-sided as had been supposed. The campaign was carried on with a bitterness and acrimony almost unparalleled in the annals of Nova Scotia. Dr. Tupper proved to be a most vigorous and effective speaker on the platform, and his diatribes stirred up opposition to Mr. Howe in quarters where no such opposition had been looked for. Mr. Howe himself, it is said, was taken by surprise. He had expected to have something like a walk over the course of Cumberland County. As the campaign progressed it became apparent that, so far from enjoying a walk over, he would have enough to do to secure a bare majority. In several of his speeches during the canvass he did full justice to the energy and ability of his youthful opponent, and prophesied that the latter, though defeat must inevitably await him in the present contest, would be heard of again, and would one day take a foremost place in public life. Finally the time of election arrived, and, to the surprise even of many of his warmest supporters, Dr. Tupper's name stood at the head of the poll. Mr. Howe was constrained to take refuge in another constituency, which he continued to represent until his appointment to the Lieutenant-Governorship a short time before his death. Dr. Tupper took his seat in the House, where he soon attracted notice by the volubility and vigour of his oratory, and by the enthusiasm with which he fought out the party battles of the time. The [Pg 75]chief points in dispute were a proposed prohibitory liquor law, vote by ballot, an elective Legislative Council, and the abolition of the monopoly in the mines and minerals of the Province. On all these questions Dr. Tupper held very pronounced opinions, upon which he enlarged at great length and with much earnestness. The measures advocated by him were defeated for the time, but his speeches established his reputation as a Parliamentary speaker, and paved the way for future success. Soon afterwards, differences arose between the Roman Catholic members and the leaders of the Liberal Party in Nova Scotia, and the former, who had theretofore supported the Liberal Policy, arrayed themselves on the side of the Opposition. The result was the defeat of the Liberal Government, and the late Hon. James W. Johnston, the leader of the Conservatives, was called upon to form a new Administration, which was gazetted on the 24th of February, 1856. In the Government then formed Dr. Tupper was offered the post of Provincial Secretary, which he accepted, and thus gained his first experience of official life. During the following year (1857) he ceased to reside at Amherst, and removed to Halifax, which thenceforward continued to be his home until after the accomplishment of Confederation.

His first tenure of office as Provincial Secretary was marked by a good deal of important legislation, for which he is entitled to a full share of credit, as, though not the actual leader of the Government, he was its most energetic member, and was regarded as in many respects its leading spirit. Among the most important measures which became law at this time were the Act whereby the monopoly in mines and minerals was abolished; the Act making population the basis of representation in the Assembly; an Act amending and consolidating the Jury law; and an Act whereby subordinate officers of the Crown were disqualified from sitting in the Legislature. An Act making the Legislative Council elective was also passed by the Assembly, but was rejected by the Upper House.

In 1858 Dr. Tupper went to England on an official mission, organized in concert with representatives from New Brunswick, to promote the scheme of constructing the Intercolonial Railway. He was absent for several months, during which he had frequent conferences with the leading statesmen of Great Britain, with whom he discussed the feasibility of a political Confederation of the British American Provinces, and fitted himself for the prominent part which he afterwards took in bringing that important project to maturity.

At the general elections held in 1859 Dr. Tupper was again returned as one of the members for Cumberland County. The general result of the elections, however, was to place the Government in a minority, and when the Legislature met in January of the following year, an adverse vote once more landed the Conservatives in Opposition. As an Opposition member Dr. Tupper displayed many of the characteristics that have distinguished him in the wider sphere which he has since found for his political aspirations. He became a formidable assailant of the Government. He charged them with extravagance, and denounced their alleged shortcomings in this respect in the strongest terms. His efforts culminated in 1863, when he carried a large majority of the constituencies by means of the retrenchment cry, and once more found himself seated upon the Treasury Benches, virtually the leader of the Government. In 1864 provision for the retirement of the Premier, Mr. Johnston, by the creation of an Equity Judgeship having been made, Dr. Tupper became Premier, and so continued till 1867. It is alleged by his political opponents that his hustings and Opposition pledges of retrenchment and economy were overlooked [Pg 76]in the cares of office, and that his Administration was even more extravagant than the one it supplanted. To the Tupper Ministry of 1864-7, however, belongs the credit of passing the School Law which has ever since been in force in Nova Scotia, and which has done much to advance the cause of popular education in that Province. Whatever honour is due for the initiation of the measure and the responsibility of passing it through the House may be fairly accorded to Dr. Tupper and his colleagues, although, as a matter of fact, party differences were for the moment laid aside, and an agreement between the Government and the Liberal leaders, Messrs. Archibald and Annand, was arrived at on the basis of a free school system supported by direct local taxation, supplemented by a grant from the public treasury. The introduction of direct taxation was a bugbear from which all previous ministers had shrunk. Dr. Tupper plainly foresaw that he would have to encounter a storm of unpopularity, but his tenacity of purpose was not to be shaken. He repeatedly stated, both in his place in the House and elsewhere, his conviction that this Act would probably cost him place, power and popularity, but that he would ever regard it as one of the proudest achievements of his life. The value of the boon, says one of Dr. Tupper's eulogists, may be estimated from the fact that while in 1861 only 31,000 children between five and fifteen years of age attended school in Nova Scotia, the number had increased, in 1871, to more than 90,000. "One man had the courage to fight and master a great and growing evil, the blight of ignorance covering a whole Province, and he has his reward in the consciousness of having initiated and carried out successfully a noble national undertaking, making posterity his debtor."

In 1864 Dr. Tupper moved the resolution to send delegates to the Charlottetown (P.E.I.) Conference, where the question of a union of the Maritime Provinces was discussed, and out of which grew the movement in favour of the larger project. He was one of the representatives at the Quebec Conference held in the same year, and also at the London Conference in 1866-7, where the terms of Confederation were finally settled. He had entered into the scheme of Confederation with great energy, and carried his measure through the Local Legislature; but the feeling of a large number of the people of Nova Scotia was one of great irritation, and an amount of bitterness was aroused both against the prime mover in the scheme and the Act of Union itself that is not even yet wholly allayed. There are those who believe that a statesman with more tact and discretion and a stronger desire to conciliate would have achieved his end at less cost; but to Dr. Tupper belongs, at all events, the merit of success, as the result of great vigour, determination, and earnestness. The immediate result to himself and his Government was, however, disastrous. He alone, of all the Union candidates, was elected to the House of Commons, and in the Local Legislature of thirty-eight members the Unionists numbered but two. The fact that the Doctor was able to carry his own election under such circumstances is certainly about as strong a proof as could well have been afforded of his personal popularity in his native Province.

In 1867 he was created a C.B. (civil), in recognition of his eminent public services. During the same year he was elected to the Presidency of the Canada Medical Association, a dignity which he retained for three years, when he declined reëlection in consequence of the pressing demands upon his time arising out of his public and official duties. After the accomplishment of Confederation he was offered a seat in the Dominion Cabinet, but declined to accept it, and continued to sit in the House of [Pg 77]Commons as a private member until June, 1870, when he accepted the position of President of the Privy Council. In 1868 the Chairmanship of the Intercolonial Railway Board was offered to and refused by him. During the same year he visited London on behalf of the Dominion Government, in order to counteract Mr. Howe's efforts for a repeal of the recent union of the Provinces. He then had the satisfaction of seeing the prejudices of his old antagonist overcome by the concession of the "better terms" to Nova Scotia, while the action of their old leader had a marked effect on the course of several of the anti-unionist representatives who had formerly belonged to the Liberal Party. In 1870 the two rivals were both found in the same Dominion Cabinet, Dr. Tupper being, first, as has been seen, President of the Council; then, in 1872, Minister of Inland Revenue; and early in 1873 Minister of Customs, a post which he held until the downfall of the Macdonald Ministry in November of that year, owing to the Pacific Scandal disclosures. The general election which ensued in January, 1874, once more placed the Government supporters from Nova Scotia in a minority, though Dr. Tupper himself was returned by his old constituents in Cumberland County for the ninth time. During the existence of Mr. Mackenzie's Government he was one of its most uncompromising opponents, and was a most unsparing critic of the financial and Pacific Railway Policy of the Administration. During the summer of 1878 he took an active part in organizing the campaign for the impending general election, and like other prominent politicians on both sides, delivered stirring addresses at public meetings in various parts of the country. He advocated the project which has been christened "the National Policy" with remarkable vehemence. At the election which took place on the 17th of September of that year he was once more elected by the county of Cumberland, by a majority of 562 votes, and thereby secured his tenth consecutive return for that constituency. Upon the formation of the new Administration under the auspices of Sir John A. Macdonald in the following October, Dr. Tupper accepted the portfolio of Minister of Public Works, which he retained until the passing of the Act dividing that Department, since which time he has been Minister of Railways and Canals. On the 24th of May, 1879, he was created a Knight of the noble Order of St. Michael and St. George by the present Governor-General, acting on behalf of Her Majesty.

Sir Charles Tupper is still, as he has long been, one of the foremost men of the Liberal Conservative Party, and is usually regarded as the future leader of that party in the event of Sir John A. Macdonald's retirement from public life. He has been assailed with much rancour by his opponents, and various charges of corruption have from time to time been brought against him; but these accusations do not seem to have seriously affected his popularity with his political allies, and he himself appears to regard them with supreme indifference. His character and attributes have been limned by writers of opposite political tendencies, and the bias of the writers is of course apparent in the conclusions arrived at. One of the most hostile of his critics says of him: "He is not an attractive orator. His speeches lack freshness or novelty; no original idea ever seems to intrude itself upon his consideration; his delivery is loud and monotonous, his torrent of words being extremely tiring to listen to and hard to follow. His statements are often made loosely and recklessly, with very small foundation, and apparently upon the spur of the moment. At times it seems as though exhaustion or apoplexy were about to supervene as the orator thunders away at real or imaginary [Pg 78]grounds of complaint, or magnifies some microscopical mole-hill into a mountain; but now and then, even in his most tremendous mood, a lurking smile hints that he is not, after all, too terribly in earnest, and those who know him best are not always over persuaded of the sincerity of his advocacy. He is 'the fighting captain' of the Opposition craft, and has little care apparently for the course of her navigation or the dangers into which she may be carried, so long as his aggressive temperament finds its true avocation. His political life has been one eminently favourable for the cultivation of an antagonistic habit and manner. Controversy in Nova Scotia, in the days of his career in the Assembly of that Province, was conducted in no gentle spirit. The contestants handled each other without gloves, and his reputation for personal honour and integrity in connection with his official position was more than once seriously challenged." Audi alteram partem. A writer who takes a much more favourable view of Sir Charles's character, position and prospects, says that: "On his own side of the House he stands next to Sir John Macdonald, whose right arm he is, and whose successor as leader of the Liberal Conservative party, and the head of a future Conservative Government he is, in all human probability, destined to become. If the question were asked as to who are the two ablest men on each side of the House, the line is so clearly marked that ninety-nine out of a hundred would reply, 'Mr. Mackenzie and Mr. Blake on the one—Sir John Macdonald and Sir Charles Tupper on the other.' Sir Charles Tupper has reached his present position through no extraneous influence. All that he has and is, he owes to himself, under Providence. He took his place in the front rank as a public man at the outset by pure force of character and strength of intellect. As a politician he has throughout been consistent and progressive, generally taking counsel with himself rather than following the suggestions of others. There is nothing mean, shifty, or vacillating in his character. In every line of action he has taken, he has followed it out in a firm, fearless and undaunted spirit. With strong party feelings, and a still stronger will, his course has always been shaped in accordance with what he believes to be the public interest. In the earlier part of his career he was dreaded for his terrible power of invective. That power remains, but he has long ceased to wield it as a weapon of offence. His leading characteristics as an orator and statesman are clearness and rapidity of thought, fluency and accuracy of language, tenacity of purpose, strength of will, and promptness of action. His public speeches are an index at once of his intellect and his constitutional temperament. His words are poured out like an avalanche, but you will listen in vain for either verbiage or repetition. The sentences flow on keen and incisive, copious in fact and illustration, bristling with argument, and crushing in force and vigour of expression. As a debater he is perhaps the foremost man in the House of Commons. His articulation is clear and resonant, his utterance rapid and impassioned. But though vehement enough in manner when heated by debate, he seldom loses temper, or forgets the conventional courtesy due to an opponent. His judgment is calm and collected at all times, and few can parry a thrust more adroitly, or be more formidable in attack."

Sir Charles Tupper is a Governor of Dalhousie College, Halifax, and is the author of several pamphlets, the best known of which is "A Letter to the Right Honourable the Earl of Carnarvon, Principal Secretary of State for the Colonies," published at London, in 1866, in reply to a pamphlet by the late Hon. Joseph Howe, entitled "Confederation, considered in relation to the interests of the Empire."

[Pg 79]



"My daddy he crossed the wide ocean,
My mother brought me on her neck,
And we came in the year 'fifty-seven,
To guard the good town of Quebec.

"In the year 'fifty-nine came the Britons;
Full well I remember the day—
They knocked at our gates for admittance,
Their vessels were moored in our bay.
Says Montcalm, 'Go drive me yon red-coats
Away to the sea, whence they come.'—
Then we marched against Wolfe and his bull-dogs,
We marched at the sound of the drum."


"Go to; the boy is a born generalissimo, and is destined to be a Marshal of France," said M. Ricot, holding up his hands in amazement. The boy referred to was a little fellow seven or eight years of age, by name Louis Joseph de Saint Véran. M. Ricot was his tutor, and was led to express himself after this fashion in consequence of some precocious criticisms of his pupil on the tactics employed by Caius Julius Caesar at a battle fought in Transalpine Gaul fifty odd years before the advent of the Christian era. It was evident to the critic's youthful mind that the battle ought to have resulted differently, and that if the foes of "the mighty Julius" had the wit to take advantage of his indiscretion, certain pages of the "Commentaries" might have been conceived in a less boastful spirit. Little Louis Joseph had sketched a rough plan, showing the respective positions of the opposing forces, and had then demanded of his tutor why this had not been done, why that had been neglected, and why the other had never been even so much as thought of. M. Ricot, after carefully following out the reasoning of his pupil, could find no weak point therein, and was fain to admit that the great Roman had been guilty of a huge blunder in the arrangement of his forces. Fortunately for the General's military reputation, the Gauls had been beaten in spite of his defective strategy, and he himself had survived to transmit to posterity a rather egotistical account of the affair. M. Ricot had been reading those "Commentaries" all his life—reading them, as he supposed, critically—but he had never lighted upon the discovery which his present pupil had made upon a first perusal. Well might he exclaim, "Go to; the boy is a born generalissimo, and is destined to be a Marshal of France."

Such is the anecdote—preserved in an old volume of French memoirs—of the childhood of him who subsequently became famous on two continents, and who for more than a hundred years past has been accounted one of the most redoubtable commanders of his age. If the story be true, certainly the Marquis de Montcalm did not carry out the splendid promise of his boyhood. He lived to fight the battles of his country with unflinching courage, with a tolerable amount of military skill, and with a tenacity of purpose that often achieved [Pg 80]success against tremendous odds. But, unlike the great general to whom, during the last few weeks of his life, it was his fortune to be opposed, he never gave any evidence of possessing an original military genius—such a genius as would seem to have been possessed by the youth who figures in the foregoing anecdote. His chivalrous bravery, his high-bred courtesy, and, more than all, his untimely death, have done much to make his name famous in history, and to obscure certain features of character which we are not usually accustomed to associate with greatness. "History," says Cooper, "is like love, and is apt to surround her heroes with an atmosphere of imaginary brightness. It is probable that Louis de Saint Véran will be viewed by posterity only as the gallant defender of his country, while his cruel apathy on the shores of the Oswego and the Horican will be forgotten."

He was descended from a noble French family, and was born at the Château of Caudiac, near Nismes, in Southern France, on the 28th of February, 1712. Concerning his early years but few particulars have come down to us. He seems to have entered the army before he had completed his fourteenth year, and to have distinguished himself in various campaigns in Germany, Bohemia and Italy during the war of the Austrian succession. At the disastrous battle of Piacenza, in Italy, fought in the year 1746, he gained the rank of Colonel; and in 1749 he became a Brigadier-general. Seven years subsequent to the latter date he began to figure conspicuously in Canadian history, and from that time forward we are able to trace his career pretty closely. Early in 1756, having been elevated to the rank of a Field-Marshal—thus verifying the prediction of his old tutor—he was appointed successor to the Baron Dieskau in the chief command of the French forces in this country. He sailed from France early in April, and arrived at Quebec about a month afterwards. He was accompanied across the Atlantic by a large reinforcement, consisting of nearly 14,000 regular troops, and an ample supply of munitions of war. He at once began to set on foot those active operations against the British in America which were followed up with such unremitting vigilance throughout the greater part of the following three years.

The state of affairs in Canada at this period may be briefly summarized as follows:—The Government was administered by the Marquis de Vaudreuil-Cavagnal, a man ill-fitted for so onerous a position in such troublous times. The colony extended from the seaboard to the far west, through the valley of the Ohio, and had a white population of about 80,000. Previous to Montcalm's arrival there were 3,000 veteran French troops in the country, in addition to a well-trained militia. The country, indeed, was an essentially military settlement, and the people felt that they might at any time be called upon to defend their frontiers. The countless tribes and offshoots of the Huron-Algonquin Indians had cast in their lot with the French, and were to contribute not a little to the success of many of their war-like operations. The French, by means of their Forts at Niagara, Toronto and Frontenac (Kingston), held almost undisputed sovereignty over Lake Ontario; and their forts at Crown Point and Ticonderoga enabled them to control Lake Champlain.

Still, the French colonists laboured under some serious disadvantages, which contributed eventually to decide the contest adversely to them. They had given comparatively little attention to the cultivation of the soil, and suffered from a chronic scarcity of food. They were subjected to feudal exactions ill-suited to the condition of the country, and were further impoverished by huge commercial monopolies. Every branch of the public service was corrupt, and the peculations of the officials, if not shared by [Pg 81]the Governor himself, were at least winked at or sanctioned by him. Montcalm, whatever may have been his shortcomings in some respects, was no self-seeker, and was very properly disgusted with the maladministration which everywhere prevailed. His dissatisfaction with, and contempt for the Governor, had the effect of producing much internal dissension among the Canadians, and of hastening the downfall of French dominion in the colony.

The population of the British colonies at this time was not much less than three millions; but this population, unlike that of Canada, knew little of military affairs. The British colonists had spent their time in commercial and agricultural pursuits, and had not cast loose from the spirit of puritanism which had animated the breasts of their forefathers. As compared with the mother-country they were poor enough in all conscience, but they were, as a rule, frugal, industrious and intelligent; and, as compared with their Canadian neighbours, they might almost be said to be in affluent circumstances. They possessed in an eminent degree those qualities—energy, endurance, and courage—which mark the Anglo-Saxon race in every quarter of the globe. Such a foe, if once disciplined and roused to united action, was not to be despised, even by the veteran battalions of France; and the most Christian King showed his appreciation of this fact by sending against them a general who was regarded as the most consummate soldier in Europe.

Having arrived at Quebec about the middle of May, Montcalm lost no time in opening the campaign. One of his earliest proceedings was to lay siege to Fort Oswego, which, after a faint resistance, was compelled to surrender. Articles of capitulation were signed, the British laid down their arms, and the fort was delivered over to the conquerors. One hundred and thirty-four cannon and a large quantity of specie and military stores became the spoil of the victors, and more than 1,600 British subjects, including 120 women and children, became prisoners of war.

Up to this epoch in his career the conduct of the Marquis de Montcalm had been such as to deserve the unqualified admiration alike of his contemporaries and of posterity. Though not past his prime, he had achieved the highest military distinction which his sovereign could bestow. His chivalrous courage had been signally displayed on many a hard-fought field, and his urbanity, amiability, and generosity had made him the idol of his soldiers. He had a manner at once grand and ingratiating, and in his intercourse with others he manifested a bonhommie that caused him to be beloved alike by the simple soldier and the haughty noblesse of his native land. Considering his opportunities, he had been a diligent student, and had improved his mind by familiarity with the productions of many of the greatest writers of ancient and modern times. By far the greater part of his life had been spent in the service of his country, and when compelled to endure the privations incidental to an active military life in the midst of war, he had ever been ready to share his crust with the humblest soldier in the ranks. Up to this time every action of his life had seemed to indicate that he was a man of high principle and stainless honour. If it had been his good fortune to die before the fall of Oswego his name would have been handed down to future times as a perfect mirror of chivalry—a knight without fear and without reproach. It is sad to think that a career hitherto without a blot should have been marred by repeated acts of cruelty and breaches of faith. On both counts of this indictment the Marquis of Montcalm must be pronounced guilty; and in view of his conduct at Oswego, and afterwards at Fort William Henry, the only conclusion at which the [Pg 82]impartial historian can arrive is that he was lamentably deficient in the highest attributes of character.

Fort Oswego was surrendered on the 14th of August. By the terms of capitulation the sick and wounded were specially entrusted to Montcalm, whose word was solemnly pledged for their protection and safe conduct. How was the pledge redeemed? No sooner were the British deprived of their arms than the Indian allies of the French were permitted to swoop down upon the defenceless prisoners and execute upon them their savage will. The sick and wounded were scalped, slain, and barbarously mutilated before the eyes of the Marshal of France, who had guaranteed that not a hair of their heads should fall. Nay, more; a score of the prisoners were deliberately handed over to the savages to be ruthlessly butchered, as an offering to the manes of an equal number of Indians who had been slain during the siege. Such are the unimpeachable facts of the massacre at Oswego.

It is not to be supposed that these proceedings on the part of the Indians were agreeable to the feelings of Montcalm, or that he consented to them with a very good grace. The noble representative of the highest civilization in Europe could scarcely have taken pleasure in witnessing the hideous massacre of defenceless women and children. But he was anxious to retain the coöperation of his red allies at any cost, and had not the moral greatness to exercise his authority to restrain their savage lust for blood. It has been contended by some defenders of his fame that he had no choice in the matter—that the ferocity of the savages was aroused, and could not be controlled. It is sufficient to say in reply that those who argue thus must wilfully shut their eyes to the facts. Was it because he could not restrain his allies that he, without remonstrance, delivered up to them twenty British soldiers to be tortured, cut to pieces, and burned? Was he unable to restrain them when he finally became sickened with their butchery and personally interposed to prevent its further continuance? From the moment when his will was unmistakably made known to the Indians the massacre ceased; and if he had been true to himself and his solemnly-plighted word from the beginning, that massacre would never have begun. By no specious argument can he be held guiltless of the blood of those luckless victims whose dismembered limbs were left to fester before the entrenchments at Oswego.

With the surrender of Oswego Great Britain lost her last vestige of control over Lake Ontario. The fort was demolished, and the French returned to the eastern part of the Province. The result of the campaign of 1756 was decidedly in favour of the French, and Montcalm's reputation as a military commander rose rapidly, though his conduct at Oswego led to his being looked upon with a sort of distrust that had never before attached to his name. His courage and generalship, however, were unimpeachable, and his vigilance never slept. During the following winter his spies scoured the frontiers of the British settlements, and gained early intelligence of every important movement of the forces. Among other information, he learned that the British had a vast store of provisions and munitions of war at Fort William Henry, at the south-western extremity of Lake George. Early in the spring, Montcalm resolved to capture this fort, and to possess himself of the stores. On the 16th of March, 1757, he landed on the opposite side of the lake, at a place called Long Point. Next day, having rounded the head of the lake, he attacked the fort; but the garrison made a vigorous defence, and he was compelled to retire to Fort Ticonderoga, at the foot of the lake. For several months afterwards his attention [Pg 83]was distracted from Fort William Henry, by operations in different parts of the Province; but early in the month of August he renewed the attempt with a force consisting of 7,000 French and Canadian troops, 2,000 Indians, and a powerful train of artillery. The garrison consisted of 2,300 men, besides women and children. To tell the story of the second siege and final surrender of Fort William Henry would require pages. Suffice it to say that the dire tragedy of Oswego was reënacted on a much more extended scale. For six days the garrison was valiantly defended by Lieutenant-Colonel Munro, a veteran of the 35th Regiment of the line. Day after day did the gallant old soldier defend his trust, waiting in vain for succours that never arrived. Finally, when he learned that no succours were to be expected, and that to prolong the strife would simply be to throw away the lives of his men, he had an interview with the French commander, and agreed to an honourable capitulation. Again did Montcalm pledge his sacred word for the safety of the garrison, which was to be escorted to Fort Edward by a detachment of French troops. The sick and wounded were to be taken under his own protection until their recovery, when they were to be permitted to return to their own camp.

Such were the terms of capitulation; terms which were honourable to the victor, and which the vanquished could accept without ignominy. How were these terms carried out? No sooner was the garrison well clear of the fort than the shrill war-whoop of the Indians was heard, and there ensued a slaughter so terrible, so indiscriminate, and so inconceivably hideous in all its details that even the history of pioneer warfare hardly furnishes any parallel to it. Nearly a thousand victims were slain on the spot, and hundreds more were carried away into hopeless captivity. No more graphic or historically accurate description of that scene has ever been written than is to be found in "The Last of the Mohicans," where we read that no sooner had the war-whoop sounded than upwards of two thousand raging savages burst from the forest and threw themselves across the plain with instinctive alacrity. "Death was everywhere, in its most terrific and disgusting aspects. Resistance only served to inflame the murderers, who inflicted their furious blows long after their victims were beyond the reach of their resentment. The flow of blood might be likened to the outbreaking of a gushing torrent; and as the natives became heated and maddened by the sight, many among them kneeled on the earth and drank freely, exultingly, hellishly, of the crimson tide. The trained bodies of the British troops threw themselves quickly into solid masses, endeavouring to awe their assailants by the imposing appearance of a military front. The experiment in some measure succeeded, though many suffered their unloaded muskets to be torn from their hands in the vain hope of appeasing the savages."

It has been alleged on Montcalm's behalf that when the slaughter began he used his utmost endeavours to arrest it. His utmost endeavours! Why, even if his command was insufficient to restrain his allies, he had seven thousand regular troops, with arms in their hands, at his back. Instead of theatrically baring his breast, and calling upon the savages to slay him in place of the English, for whom his honour was plighted, he would have done well to have kept that honour unsullied by observing the plain terms of capitulation, and providing a suitable escort. Instead of calling upon the British—hampered as they were by the presence of their sick, and of their women and children—to defend themselves, he should have called upon his own troops to protect his honour and that of France. Had his promised escort been provided no [Pg 84]attempt would have been made by the Indians, and the tragedy at Oswego might in process of time have come to be regarded as a mere mischance. But no such excuse can now be of any avail. According to some accounts of this second massacre, no escort whatever was furnished. According to others, the escort was a mere mockery, consisting of a totally inadequate number of French troops, who were very willing to see their enemies butchered, and who did not even make any attempt to restrain their allies. All that can be known for certain is, that if there was any escort at all it was wholly ineffective; and, leaving humanity altogether out of the question, this was in itself an express violation of the terms upon which the garrison had been surrendered. The massacre at Fort William Henry followed one short year after that at Oswego, and the two combined have left a stain upon the memory of the man who permitted them which no time can ever wash away.

It is unnecessary to describe at length the subsequent campaigns of that and the following year. Montcalm's defence of Fort Ticonderoga on the 8th of June, 1758, was a masterly piece of strategy, and was unmarred by any incident to detract from the honour of his victory, which was achieved against stupendous odds. Ticonderoga continued to be Montcalm's headquarters until Quebec was threatened by the British under Wolfe, when he at once abandoned the shores of Lake Champlain, and mustered all his forces for the defence of the capital of the French colony.

The siege of Quebec has been described at length in a former sketch, and it is unnecessary to add much to that description here. It will be remembered how Wolfe landed at L'Anse du Foulon in the darkness of the night of September 12th, 1759, and how the British troops scaled the precipitous heights leading to the Plains of Abraham. Intelligence of this momentous event reached Montcalm, at his headquarters at Beauport, about daybreak on the morning of the 13th. "Aha," said the General, "then they have at last got to the weak side of this miserable garrison." He at once issued orders to break up the camp, and led his army across the St. Charles River, past the northern ramparts of the city, and thence on to the plains of Abraham, where Wolfe and his forces were impatiently awaiting his arrival. The battle was of short duration. The first deadly volley fired by the British decided the fortunes of the day, and the French fled across the plains in the direction of the citadel. Montcalm, who had himself received a dangerous wound, rode hither and thither, and used his utmost endeavour to rally his flying troops. While so engaged he received a mortal wound, and sank to the ground. From that moment there was no attempt to oppose the victorious British, whose general had likewise fallen in the conflict.

Montcalm's wound, though mortal, was not immediately so, and he survived until the following day. When the surgeons proceeded to examine his wound the general asked if it was mortal. They replied in the affirmative. "How long before the end?" he calmly inquired. He was informed that the end was not far off, and would certainly arrive before many hours. "So much the better," was the comment of the dying soldier—"I shall not live to see the surrender of Quebec." The commander of the garrison asked for instructions as to the further defence of the city, but Montcalm declined to occupy himself any longer with worldly affairs. Still, even at this solemn moment, the courteous urbanity by which he had always been distinguished did not desert him. "To your keeping," he said to De Ramesey, the commander of the garrison, "I commend the honour of France. I wish you all comfort, and that you may be happily extricated from your present perplexities. As for me, my time is short, and [Pg 85]I have matters of more importance to attend to than the defence of Quebec. I shall pass the night with God, and prepare myself for death." Not long afterwards he again spoke: "Since it was my misfortune to be discomfited and mortally wounded, it is a great consolation to me to be vanquished by so great and generous an enemy. If I could survive this wound, I would engage to beat three times the number of such forces as I commanded this morning with a third of their number of British troops." His chaplain arrived about this time, accompanied by the bishop of the colony, from whom the dying man received the last sacred offices of the Roman Catholic religion. He lingered for some hours afterwards, and finally passed away, to all outward seeming, with calmness and resignation.

It seems like an ungrateful task to recur to the frailties of a brave and chivalrous man, more especially when he dies in the odour of sanctity. But as we ponder upon that final scene in the life of the gay, charming, brilliant Marquis of Montcalm, we cannot avoid wondering whether the "sheeted ghosts" of the wounded men, helpless women, and innocent babes who were so ruthlessly slaughtered at Oswego and William Henry flitted around his pillow in those last fleeting moments. Notwithstanding the fact that his mind seemed to receive solace from the solemn rites in which he then took part, we have never read the account of those last hours of Montcalm without being reminded of the lines of the British Homer descriptive of the death of him who fell "on Flodden's fatal field."

The exact place of Montcalm's death has never been definitely ascertained. Various sites are indicated by different authorities, but no conclusive evidence has been adduced in support of the claims of any of them. It is, however, known for certain that his body was interred within the precincts of the Ursuline Convent at Quebec, where a mural tablet was erected by Lord Aylmer to his memory in 1832. The following is a translation of the inscription:—


A few years ago his remains were disinterred, and his skull, with its base enclosed in a military collar, is religiously preserved in a glass case on a table in the convent. The monument to the joint memory of Wolfe and Montcalm has been referred to in a previous sketch.

Thus lived and died the Marquis of Montcalm. He was forty-seven years of age at the time of his death, and was constitutionally younger than his years would seem to indicate. A Canadian historian thus sums up the brighter side of his character: "Trained from his youth in the art of war; laborious, just, and self-denying, he offered a remarkable exception to the venality of the public men of Canada at this period, and in the midst of universal corruption made the general good his aim. Night, the rushing tide, veteran discipline, and more brilliant genius had given his rival the victory. Yet he was not the less great; and while the name of Wolfe will never be forgotten, that of Montcalm is also engraved by its side on the enduring scroll of human fame. The latter has been censured for not abiding the chances of a siege, rather than risking a battle. But with a town already in ruins, a garrison deficient in provisions and ammunition, and an enemy to contend with possessed of a formidable siege-train, the fire of which must speedily silence his guns, he acted wisely in staking the issue on a battle, in which, if he found defeat, he met also an honourable and a glorious death."

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Mr. Mowat, who has long been one of the most prominent members of the Reform Party in this country, cannot be said to have inherited any portion of his advanced political views. He was cradled in the lap of Toryism, and in his early youth was regarded by some members of the Conservative Party as an available future candidate for Parliament. His father, the late Mr. John Mowat, was a native of Canisbay, Caithness, Scotland, who early in life entered the army, and who served throughout the whole course of the Peninsular war. In 1816 he came to Canada; and he had been only a few months in this country ere he took up his abode at Kingston, where he thenceforward continued to reside until his death. During the early years of his residence in Canada he married Miss Helen Levack, who, like himself, was a native of Caithness, and by whom he had five children, the eldest of whom is the subject of the present sketch. Soon after settling at Kingston, Mr. Mowat opened a general retail store, and continued to carry on a successful commercial business for many years. At the time of the disruption of the Scottish National Church, in 1843, he adhered to the Kirk. He had then been for many years an elder of St. Andrew's Church, Kingston, and he so remained until his death. His business continued to prosper, and in course of time he realized a competence. As he advanced in years he gradually ceased to take any personal concern in the management of his commercial affairs, and finally withdrew from mercantile life altogether. He was a man of much social influence, and was held in high esteem for the uprightness of his character. He was one of the original promoters of the Commercial Bank, and was for many years one of the directors of that institution. He was also a trustee of Queen's College for many years prior to his death, which took place at Kingston in 1860. In politics he favoured Responsible Government in the Province, and was a zealous opponent of the exclusive claims of the Church of England, but, like many others in his day who held those views, he was an adherent of the Conservative Party.

Oliver Mowat was born at Kingston, on the 22nd of July, 1820. After receiving tuition at several small local private establishments, he attended a more pretentious educational institution taught by the Rev. John Cruikshank, who is now minister of the parish of Turriff, in Scotland. The latter institution was one of some repute in those times, and numbered among its scholars the present Premier of Canada and the late Hon. John Hillyard Cameron. Like his father before him, he was bred in the Presbyterian faith, and has always been a member of that body. As a child he is said to have exhibited a good deal of mental precocity, and learned to read at a very early age. When only five years old he used to mount a high stool in his father's [Pg 87]counting-room, and read the newspapers aloud to the clerks employed in the establishment. Like most clever boys, he was fond of books and study, and acquired a good deal of miscellaneous knowledge. Upon leaving school he entered upon the study of the law in the office of Mr. (now Sir) John A. Macdonald, in his native town. Within a few months after he had completed his seventeenth year the rebellion of 1837-8 broke out. Trained as he had been, he could not be expected to feel any sympathy in that unwise movement, and, like a loyal subject, he served for a short time as a volunteer. After spending four years in Mr. Macdonald's office, he removed to Toronto, where he completed the term of his studies under the late Mr. Robert E. Burns, afterwards a Judge of the Court of Queen's Bench. In Michaelmas Term, 1841, he was admitted as an attorney and solicitor, and in the same term he was called to the Bar of Upper Canada. He at once entered upon the practice of his profession at Kingston. He soon afterwards removed to Toronto, and formed a partnership with his former principal, Mr. Burns, under the style of Burns & Mowat. The late Mr. P. M. M. S. Vankoughnet was subsequently admitted to the firm, the style of which thenceforward became Burns, Mowat & Vankoughnet. Mr. Burns then occupied the position of Judge of the Home District Court, embracing the present counties of York, Ontario and Peel. As the law then stood, he was permitted to carry on his professional business concurrently with his judicial duties; but in 1848 an Act was passed whereby County Court Judges were precluded from practising at the Bar. Mr. Burns accordingly gave up his professional practice, and retained his seat on the Bench. He was subsequently raised to the dignity of a Puisné Judge of the Court of Queen's Bench, and continued to occupy that position until his death, which took place on the 13th of January, 1863. Mr. Vankoughnet's distinguished career, both in political life and as Chancellor of Upper Canada, is outlined elsewhere in these pages. After Mr. Burns's retirement from practice, Messrs. Mowat and Vankoughnet continued to carry on business in partnership for some years. Mr. Mowat confined his attention almost exclusively to the equity branch of the profession. The Court of Chancery, which had been created in 1837, was not then very efficiently conducted. The Chancellorship was vested in the Crown, and the judicial duties were discharged by Vice-Chancellor Robert S. Jameson, a man of varied learning and accomplishments, but of objectionable habits, and in many important respects unfitted for the duties of his office; and the delay and expense to which suitors were in consequence subjected were so great as to be almost tantamount to a denial of justice. The Vice-Chancellor's inefficiency increased with his advancing years, and things went on from bad to worse, until there was an outcry for the abolition of the Court of Chancery from one end of the Province to the other. In 1849, the late Hon. William Hume Blake, who was Solicitor-General in the then existing Baldwin-Lafontaine Government, introduced and passed through the House a Bill whereby the Court was reformed and entirely reorganized, with three judges instead of one. Mr. Blake himself was induced to accept the office of Chancellor, and from that time forward the Court of Chancery was conducted with an efficiency which soon gained the confidence both of the Bar and the public.

Oliver Mowat
Oliver Mowat

At the Bar of the remodelled Court Mr. Mowat took a foremost place. His practice grew day by day, and he was entirely engrossed by the duties of his profession. The partnership between Mr. Vankoughnet and himself having been dissolved by mutual consent, they practised thenceforward separately, and each had a [Pg 88]very large business. Mr. Mowat after a time formed a partnership with Messrs. John Ewart and John Helliwell (both deceased), under the style of Mowat, Ewart & Helliwell; and subsequently with the late Mr. John Roaf and a Mr. Davis, the style of the firm being Mowat, Roaf & Davis. After the dissolution of this partnership Mr. Mowat for some time carried on business alone. He had the largest equity practice in Upper Canada, and was concerned in nearly every important case which came before the Court of Chancery in those days. Gradually he began to take a keen interest in politics. He had already, however, formed political ideas widely at variance with those in which he had been reared. Theoretically, he had become an advanced Liberal, though he did not then, and probably does not now, believe that the time had arrived for carrying all his theories into practice. Some Conservatives regarded and spoke of his alliance with the Reform Party as a defection from their ranks. A defection, however, it certainly was not, as he had never been allied with the Tory Party, as had his father; he had never recorded a Tory vote, or in fact taken any part in political life. His growing leanings in the direction of Liberalism were the outgrowth of the times, and of his own study and reflection.

In 1856 Mr. Mowat was created a Queen's Counsel, and during the same year he was appointed as one of the commissioners for the consolidation of the Public General Statutes of Canada and of Upper Canada respectively. At the general election of 1857, he offered himself in opposition to Mr. (now the Hon.) Joseph C. Morrison, as a candidate for the representation of South Ontario in the House of Assembly. He was elected by a majority of nearly 800, and upon the opening of the next session in February, 1858, he took his seat in the House. There he spoke with no uncertain sound. He opposed various measures of the then-existing Macdonald-Cartier Government with a vigour and clearness of exposition which produced considerable effect. He was one of the most effective speakers on the side of the Opposition, all of whom yielded the palm to their leader, the late Mr. Brown, whose energy and vigour were then in their zenith. The Opposition as a whole was a most formidable one, and the Government had no sinecure in their offices. On the question of Representation by Population the Ministry was sustained, after an acrimonious debate in which both Mr. Brown and Mr. Mowat took a conspicuous part, by a majority of only twelve. Then came the debate on the question of the location of the seat of the Government. A resolution, the terms of which everybody remembers, was carried against the Government by a majority of fourteen. Then followed the resignation, and the formation of the Brown-Dorion Government, in which Mr. Mowat accepted the post of Provincial Secretary. This Government, however, was fated to last only four days, the Governor-General having refused the usual and well-known right of a new Ministry to a dissolution. The "Double Shuffle" followed, and Mr. Mowat and his colleagues once more found themselves in Opposition. Mr. Mowat continued to second Mr. Brown with much energy all through that Parliament.

During the year 1857 he sat in the City Council of Toronto as Alderman for St. Lawrence Ward, and during the following year for St. James's Ward. While occupying that position he proposed and carried through the Council an important measure which was known as "Alderman Mowat's By-law." It was entitled, "An Act to provide for the better administration of the affairs of the Corporation," and furnished an important check upon the expenditure of the public funds. It has since been consolidated, and now forms a part of the City By-law No. 504.

[Pg 89]At the general election of 1861 he made a bold move, being nothing less than an attempt to oust Mr. Macdonald from the representation of Kingston, which the latter gentleman had then represented for a continuous period of seventeen years. The attempt was not successful, and indeed could hardly have been expected to be so, and Mr. Mowat took refuge in his old constituency of South Ontario. Upon the formation of the Sandfield Macdonald-Dorion Administration in May, 1863, Mr. Mowat accepted the portfolio of Postmaster-General, which he retained until the defeat of that Government in the following year. Upon the formation of the Taché-Macdonald Government he again accepted the Postmaster-Generalship, which he retained for about four months. He was a member of the Union Conference held at Quebec in that year, and took a part in the drafting of the Constitution for the Dominion. In the subsequent proceedings which resulted in the accomplishment of Confederation he was not destined to play a very important part, as he about this time withdrew from political life. In the autumn of 1864 the death of Vice-Chancellor Esten left a vacancy on the Chancery Bench in Upper Canada. The vacant position was offered to Mr. Mowat, and after due consideration accepted. During the next eight years he discharged the important and onerous duties of an equity judge with honour to himself, and with acceptance to the profession. The most noteworthy characteristic of his decisions is the manifest desire to mete out perfect justice between man and man; and for this purpose to regard, as far as a judge may, the spirit of the law in preference to the letter. This, of course, is one of the duties of every judge who presides over the Court of Chancery; though there is no greater mistake than to suppose that an equity judge is not bound by precedents, and even by technicalities, though not, perhaps, to so great an extent as judges of the Courts of Common Law. It was currently said by members of the profession that he was the most reluctant judge on the Bench to grant a decree to a dishonest suitor, whatever former decisions and the strict letter of the law in the case might be. Many of his written judgments are notable specimens of clear and logical reasoning, and are held in high respect by the judges and the profession generally.

In the autumn of 1872 Mr. Mowat resigned his seat on the Bench and reëntered political life. The circumstances under which he was induced to take this step were simply these. The Act prohibiting Dual Representation having come into force, Mr. Blake, the then Premier of Ontario, was compelled to choose between the Dominion and the Local Parliaments as a field for his future labours. Mr. Mackenzie, who also held office in the Local Cabinet, was placed under a similar necessity. They both finally resolved to select the House of Commons, and it became necessary in the interests of the Reform Party of Ontario to supply their place in the Local Cabinet. It was suggested to the Lieutenant-Governor—no doubt by Mr. Blake, the retiring Premier—that Mr. Mowat, if he could be induced to re-enter the political arena, would be eminently fitted to carry on the Government with advantage to the Province. The suggestion was acted upon, and Mr. Mowat accepted the proposition made to him. On the 25th of October it was announced that the Ministry had been reconstructed under Mr. Mowat's auspices, and that Mr. Mowat had himself taken the office of Attorney-General. Nearly eight years have elapsed since that time. There have been modifications in the personnel of the Local Cabinet in the interval, but Mr. Mowat still retains his position, and the result of the elections of the 5th of June, 1879, would seem to indicate that he is not likely to be [Pg 90]ousted, at least for some time to come. After forming his Cabinet in the autumn of 1872, he presented himself to the electors of North Oxford, when he was returned by acclamation. He was again returned by acclamation at the general election in 1875; and at the general election in 1879 his majority was 1157. At the latter election he was also a candidate for the representation of East Toronto, in opposition to the Hon. Alexander Morris, but was defeated by a majority of 57 votes.

A brief reference to the legislation effected in Ontario under Mr. Mowat's régime will give some idea of the industry of the Government of which he has been the guiding spirit. He assumed office, as has been seen, in the month of October, 1872. The ensuing session lasted nearly three months, during which 163 Acts were passed, 50 of which related to matters of general concern. Among the most important may be enumerated the Act for the settlement of the Municipal Loan Fund; the Act consolidating the Municipal Law; and the Act respecting the Administration of Justice. Other legislation effected improvements in the mode of electing members of the Legislature; extended the usefulness of the Provincial University, and the efficiency of its Senate; established a school for practical instruction in the arts of mining, engineering, mechanics and manufactures; made more effectual regulations respecting the liquor traffic; and established public boards of health for the prevention or removal of causes of disease.

During the next session, which opened in January, 1874, 103 Acts were passed, 37 of which were of general utility. Among the most important legislation effected was the extension of the franchise to income voters, and the establishment of machinery for the revision of voters' lists at a moderate expense to each municipality, while the principle of voting by ballot was introduced. The system of licenses as a preliminary to the lawful solemnization of marriage was made clear, and all legal questions, both as to past and future marriages, were removed, and the Provincial fee abolished. The wages of mechanics under the sum of twenty-five dollars were exempted from attachment by garnishee. Mr. Mowat also took a further successful step in removing the anomalies between matters cognizable at law and in equity, and removed the great defect which had, up to this time, existed in our judicial system, by constituting a Court of Appeal as an independent Court. The law relating to Public and High Schools was consolidated under his supervision, and the experiment was made of introducing elective members into the Council of Public Instruction. The advantage of general laws for incorporating and conferring privileges upon associations of individuals for any proper or lawful object, such as for benevolent and charitable purposes, or for any trade, business, or manufacture, was also provided for, and an expeditious and cheap method of securing incorporation for such purposes was established. The regulations of the liquor traffic were improved by taking from municipal inspectors the right of granting licenses, and placing this right under the control of the police commissioners in cities, and the municipal councils in other places, and giving the Government further powers for securing compliance with the law.

The last session of the then existing Parliament opened on the 12th of November, 1874, and presented a satisfactory record of its labours, 94 Acts having been passed, 30 of which were for public objects. Among the latter may be enumerated the Act providing for the increase of the representation of the Province by six additional members; an Act imposing additional checks against bribery and corruption at elections, and facilitating the procedure in election trials; and an Act making titles to land more secure, and simplifying the proof thereof by [Pg 91]lessening the time required to constitute title by possession. The ballot was also extended to municipal elections, and the operation of the Mechanics' Lien Act was made more efficient.

This record of legislation was accepted by the Province as satisfactory, and at the general election held in January, 1875, Mr. Mowat's Government was sustained by a considerable majority. The first session of the new Parliament began on the 25th of November, 1875, and closed on the 10th of February, 1876, during which 114 Acts were passed, 36 being of public application. The chief public measures referred to vital statistics, amendments to the law respecting municipal elections, amendments to the law suggested by the statute commissioners, the privileges of the Legislative Assembly, voters' lists, circuits for County Court Judges, increase of jurisdiction and amendments to the Division Court Act, security of public officers to the Crown, and the regulation and licensing of Insurance Companies doing business in Ontario. Further amendments were made in the law respecting the liquor traffic, so as to secure proper restraints, and diminish its injurious effects. Important changes were also effected in the Education Department of Ontario. A Committee of the Executive Council was substituted for the Council of Public Instruction, and a Minister of Education was appointed in lieu of the Chief Superintendent.

During the session of 1877 the most important public legislation related to escheats and forfeitures, the granting of the franchise to farmers' sons, the application of voters' lists to municipal elections, and amendments in the Acts respecting the Education Department, and Public and High Schools. An Act was passed for the encouragement of Agriculture, Horticulture, Arts and Manufactures, including Mechanics' Institutes, and further amendments were made to the law respecting the liquor traffic. Effect was also given to the revision of the Ontario Statutes, a task which had been completed under the personal supervision of Mr. Mowat. During this session also the gratifying results attending the Canadian exhibit at Philadelphia were formally made known to the House.

The most important public measures of the session of 1878 were an Act to establish regulations for the public service of Ontario; an Act for more clearly defining the rights and powers of Justices of the Peace; an Act for the winding up of Joint Stock Companies; an Act to establish a fund of $200,000 in aid of tile drainage operations; and an Act to provide for the finality of the voters' list. The session of 1879—the last session of the third Parliament of Ontario—was an especially productive one. The most important of the public Acts were the following:—to confirm the determination of the Northerly and Westerly boundaries of Ontario by the Arbitrators, and to provide for the administration of justice therein; to provide for the duration of the Legislative Assembly; to protect candidates at elections when lawful and reasonable expenses are incurred on their behalf without any corrupt intent; to improve the system of selecting jurors; to regulate proceedings under powers of sale in mortgages, and to preserve the right of dower to wives; to facilitate companies in supplying gas, heat, or steam. Further amendments were also made respecting Public, Separate and High Schools. From the Reports presented to the House during the session it appeared that Ontario, in the nature, extent and excellence of her exhibits at Paris, had gained as great commendation as she had received at Philadelphia in 1876, and that a market had been opened for certain Canadian manufactures.

The most important measures of last session were the Act authorizing the erection of new Parliament and Departmental Buildings; [Pg 92]the Act extending the jurisdiction and altering the machinery of the Division Courts; the Act—known as "The Creditors' Relief Act, 1880"—whereby priority among execution creditors was intended to be abolished; and the Act amending the law respecting municipal taxation. The Judicature Bill, which was introduced but not passed, is a measure which also requires some reference, as it is likely to engage the attention of the Legislature next session, and to provoke warm discussion all over the Province. This Act is founded upon the English Law Reform Act of 1873, but contains a great deal of original matter for which Mr. Mowat is himself responsible. It contemplates a practical fusion of law and equity, the abolition of all the Superior Courts, and the substitution of a general Supreme Court of Judicature for Ontario. By its provisions, the new Court is to consist of two permanent divisions, one with original jurisdiction, embracing the judges of the Courts of Chancery, Queen's Bench, and Common Pleas, to be called the High Court of Justice; and the other, with appellate jurisdiction, to be called the Court of Appeal. The High Court of Justice is to consist of three divisions, to be known as Chancery, Queen's Bench, and Common Pleas, each with a President of its own. It is to have all the jurisdiction exercised by the present Superior Courts. The jurisdiction of the Court of Appeal is to remain unchanged. In all Courts law and equity are to be concurrently administered, and in matters not specified, where there is any conflict or variance between the rules of Equity and the rules of Common Law, the rules of Equity are to prevail. "Terms," as they are called, are abolished, and the Courts may sit and act at any time and place for the transaction of business, or for the discharge of any duty which, by statute or otherwise, is required to be discharged during or after term. The present system of pleading is materially simplified, and should the Act come into operation, lawyers will practically have to unlearn many of the lessons of a lifetime. Instead of the elaborate technical pleadings in force since the passing of the Common Law Procedure Act—and these are simplicity itself as compared with the system previously in vogue—there will be simple brief statements of alleged facts by the plaintiff, and equally simple denials by the defendant. That so radical a Bill should meet with opposition from many members of the profession is what was to be expected. That the discussion respecting it will be sharp, and that some of its clauses will have to be modified, it is safe to assume. Such discussions and modifications, however, are the all but invariable accompaniments of measures equally radical, and equally far-reaching in their application. The general principles of the Bill—the simplification of legal practice, and the reduction of the cost of litigation—are likely to find acceptance with the public, and in some form or other these principles are likely to prevail.

Mr. Mowat was a member of the Senate of the University of Toronto, and is a Bencher ex officio of the Law Society of Ontario. It has been seen that for some time subsequent to the dissolution of the partnership existing between Messrs. Mowat, Roaf & Davis, Mr. Mowat carried on business alone. In 1862 he formed a partnership with Mr. James Maclennan, under the style of Mowat & Maclennan, which was dissolved on Mr. Mowat's accepting the Vice-Chancellorship. On his afterwards leaving the Bench for political life he resumed the practice of his profession, and again became connected with Mr. Maclennan, who had some years before admitted as a partner Mr. John Downey, an old student of Mr. Mowat's, and the style of the firm has ever since been Mowat, Maclennan & Downey. Of this firm Mr. Mowat is, as its style imports, senior partner.

Notwithstanding the pronounced political [Pg 93]stand he has taken ever since his entrance into public life, Mr. Mowat's personal character has never been assailed, and now stands as high as that of any man in the Dominion, not only among the adherents of his own party, but among his opponents. His most enduring claim to the remembrance of posterity will be as a law reformer, in which respect none of his contemporaries will venture to dispute his preeminence. Independently of the Judicature Act, which has not yet become law—and which, in its present shape, is hardly likely to become law—his Administration of Justice Acts and other kindred measures are lasting evidences of his legal acumen, right-mindedness, and breadth of view. His technical education has not curtailed his intellect, and he is not wedded to precedent, as is commonly the case with members of his profession. The work of his life has been done quietly, and without any parade or ostentation, but it has left its mark upon our institutions, and the mark is not likely to be soon effaced.

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Dr. Douglas's career furnishes a notable example of the extent to which genuine manliness and force of character, aided by a strong and earnest purpose in life, can triumph over depressing and adverse circumstances. He began his ministerial life with few advantages derived from education, and with none whatever derived from social standing. Since reaching manhood he has been subjected to the serious drawbacks inseparable from various depressing ailments and an uncertain state of bodily health. His great powers have developed themselves in spite of hindrances to which a feebler will and a smaller measure of genius would undoubtedly have succumbed. Undeterred by the various obstacles which from time to time have arisen in his path, he has long since achieved a position as a pulpit orator unsurpassed—perhaps unrivalled—in this country. His reputation is not confined to Canada, or to the religious Body wherewith he is more immediately connected. The lecture-halls of New England have echoed to the deep tones of his powerful voice, and his reputation for eloquence stands as high in Boston as in Montreal, where the greater part of his ministerial career has been spent. That he has been able to accomplish so much—handicapped, as he has been, by a late start in life, and by subsequent ill-health—affords strong proof that, under more favourable circumstances, his fame would have been world-wide. His services to the Methodist Church, and to the cause of Christianity generally, have been very great, and the future historian of Canadian Methodism must assign to him a place in the front rank among the pulpit orators of his time.

As is sufficiently indicated by his name, he is of Scottish origin. He was born on the 14th of October, 1825, at Ashkirk, a beautiful little village in one of the most picturesque parts of Roxburghshire, about seven miles from Abbotsford, and in the very centre of the district consecrated by the genius of Sir Walter Scott, the Ettrick Shepherd, and John Leyden. "Doubtless," says a writer in the Methodist Magazine, "his young soul was often stirred by the heroic traditions of Flodden Field and of Dunbar, which were both near by, and by the ballads of Chevy Chase and of the border wars." His parents were strict Presbyterians, and of course reared their family in the Presbyterian doctrines. How extensive the family was, we have no present means of ascertaining. There were at all events three sons, of whom the subject of this sketch was the youngest. The family emigrated from Scotland to Canada in 1832, when George was a child of seven years old, and settled in the city of Montreal. The parents were in humble circumstances, and the children seem from the first to have recognized the fact that it would be necessary for them to make their own way in [Pg 95]life. Their educational advantages, as has been intimated, were not great. George attended for a short time at a private school at Laprairie, kept by the Rev. Mr. Black, a Presbyterian minister; but he does not appear to have acquired much there beyond an elementary knowledge of the three R's. Upon leaving this school he was for a short time employed as an assistant in a Montreal book store, after which he was apprenticed to the trade of a blacksmith. He learned his trade, and entered into partnership, while still in his teens, with his eldest brother, James, who was a carpenter and builder. Meanwhile he had become an insatiable reader, and devoured with eagerness whatever books came in his way. His faculties would seem to have developed somewhat late, but before he had reached manhood his friends and acquaintances began to recognize the fact that he was endowed with unusual powers of mind. Upon any subject which specially attracted his attention he was wont to express himself with an eloquence and a wealth of illustration such as is not often heard from a youth imperfectly educated, and who has not enjoyed the advantage of association with cultured minds. Erelong he made up his mind to study medicine, and matriculated in one of the medical schools of Montreal. Soon after this time, and while his medical studies were still in progress, a crisis took place in his mental history. He began to attend the Methodist Church, and was awakened by the preaching of the late Rev. William Squire, who was then a power in the local Methodist pulpit. Having experienced the mental phenomena incident to "conversion," he joined the Methodist Church, and soon afterwards began to take a conspicuous part as a "class leader," under the direction of the Rev. John Mattheson. It is said that he was singularly diffident about his own capacity for speaking before an audience. In a very short time, however, his thoughts found forcible expression, and it was observed that his addresses produced a marked effect upon those who listened to them. In process of time he became a local preacher; emulating, in this respect, the example of his elder brother John, who had also undergone spiritual experiences, and who subsequently became a zealous and effective minister of the Methodist Church. George's sermons were from the very first marked by a high degree of spiritual fervour. "It was evident," says the writer already quoted from, "that God had called this young man to the office of the Christian ministry as his life-work, and he was not disobedient to the Divine call." In 1848, being then in his twenty-third year, he was received as a probationer for the ministry. In 1849, having been recommended by the Lower Canada District to attend the Wesleyan Theological Institute at Richmond, in England, he crossed the Atlantic for that purpose, but had scarcely reached his destination ere he was appointed to missionary work in the Bahamas District of the West India Mission. He was specially ordained at St. John's Square, London, in the spring of 1850, by the Rev. Thomas Jackson, Dr. Alder, and others, and sent to the Bermuda Islands. After about eighteen months' residence there his health failed, and he began to suffer from a distressing affection of the nerves, engendered by the peculiarities of the climate, and augmented, doubtless, by his ceaseless mental toil. He was accordingly compelled to return to Montreal, and has ever since resided in Canada, where his reputation has steadily grown with his increasing years. Of his ministerial life, twenty years have been spent in Montreal—eleven in pastoral work, seven as head of the Wesleyan Theological College, and two without a charge, on account of ill-health. His other fields of toil have been Kingston, Toronto, and Hamilton, in each of which he laboured with great effect for three years. Ever since devoting [Pg 96]himself to the ministry he has been an indefatigable student, and has aided his great natural powers of mind by a wide and various course of reading. He is especially learned in Metaphysics, and notwithstanding his multifarious duties and frequent bodily infirmities, he has kept himself fully abreast of the times in literature, philosophy, and natural science. In 1869, in recognition of his distinguished abilities, the University of McGill College conferred upon him the degree of LL.D.

George Douglas
George Douglas
Lith. by Rolph Smith Ltd Toronto from Photo by J. G. Parks, Montreal

To say that Dr. Douglas is highly esteemed by his brother ministers and Professors, and by Canadian Methodists generally, would be to give very faint expression to the prevailing sentiment. He is endowed with a magnetic force of character which impels all his acquaintances to regard him in the light of a warm personal friend. He has often been deputed to represent his Church in the great ecclesiastical gatherings of Christendom, and "right royally has he performed that task, maintaining the honour of his Church and country in the presence of the foremost orators of the day. His manly presence, his deep-toned voice, his broad sweep of thought and majestic flights of eloquence, have stirred the hearts of listening thousands, and done brave battle for the cause of God." His oratory has been pronounced by many competent judges to be even more effective than that of his friend and fellow-labourer, Dr. Punshon. Possessed of few of the tricks of elocution, his voice has a peculiar depth and richness of intonation which no mere elocutionary training can give, and, when roused by a more than usually congenial theme, his utterances seem to be positively inspired. Among a host of other important undertakings, he has represented his Church at the Young Men's Christian Association at the International Conventions at Washington, Philadelphia, Albany, Indianapolis, and Chicago; at the Evangelical Alliance in New York; and at the General Conference of the Methodist Episcopal Church in the Southern States. He has also filled with eminent ability the offices of Co-Delegate of the old Canada Conference, President of the Montreal Conference, and Vice-President and President of the General Conference of the Methodist Church of Canada. Of late years he has devoted his best powers to the duties incidental to his position as Principal of the Wesleyan Theological College at Montreal.

Elgin of Kincardine
Elgin of Kincardine

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James Bruce, who afterwards became eighth Earl of Elgin and twelfth Earl of Kincardine, was born in London, on the 20th of July, 1811. He was the second son of his father, the seventh Earl, whose embassy to Constantinople at the beginning of the present century was indirectly the means of procuring for him a reputation which will probably endure as long as the English language. All readers of Byron are familiar with the circumstances under which this reputation was gained. In the year 1799, Lord Elgin was despatched by the British Government as envoy extraordinary to Constantinople. During his embassy he had occasion to visit Athens, where he found that the combined influence of time and the Turks was rapidly destroying the magnificent vestiges of the past wherewith the city and its neighbourhood abounded. Actuated by a wish to preserve some of these relics of departed greatness—and probably wishing to connect his name with their preservation—he conceived the idea of removing a few of the more interesting of them to England. Without much difficulty he obtained permission from the Porte to take away from the ruins of ancient Athens "any stones that might appear interesting to him." The British Government declined to lend its assistance to what some members of the Cabinet regarded as an act of spoliation, and Lord Elgin was thus compelled to carry out the project at his own expense. He hired a corps of artists, labourers, and other assistants, most of whom were specially brought from Italy, to aid in the work. About ten years were spent in detaching from the Parthenon, and in excavating from the rubbish at its base, numerous specimens of various sculptures, all or most of which were presumed to have been the handiwork of Phidias and his pupils. Other valuable sculptures were disinterred from the ruins about the Acropolis, and elsewhere in the neighbourhood. Upon the arrival in England of these great works of ancient art all the world of London went to see and admire them. In 1816 they were purchased for the nation for £35,000, and placed in the British Museum, where they still remain. Many persons, however, censured Lord Elgin for what they called his Vandalism in removing the relics from their native land. Among those who assailed him on this score was Lord Byron, who hurled anathemas at him both in prose and verse. "The Curse of Minerva" may fairly be said to have made Lord Elgin's name immortal. The case made against him in that fierce philippic, however, is grossly one-sided, as the author himself subsequently acknowledged; and there is a good deal to be said on the other side. The presence of these magnificent sculptures in the British Museum gave an impetus to sculpture not only throughout Great Britain, but to a less extent throughout the whole of Western Europe. It should also be [Pg 98]remembered that had they been permitted to remain where they were they would most likely have been totally destroyed long before now in some of the many violent scenes of which Athens has since been the theatre. Some art critics have—more especially of late years—decried the workmanship of these marbles, and have argued that they could not possibly have been the work of Phidias. It is beyond doubt, however, that they display Greek art at a splendid and mature stage of development, and their value to the British nation is simply beyond price.

The subject of this sketch was destined to achieve a higher and less dubious reputation than that of his father. Being only a second son, he was not born heir-apparent to the family title and estates, and his education was completed before—in consequence of the death of his elder brother and of his father—he succeeded to the peerage. At the age of fourteen he went to Eton, from which seat of learning he in due time passed to Christ Church, Oxford. Here he formed one of a group of young men, many of whom have since attained high distinction in political life. Among them we find the names of William Ewart Gladstone, the late Duke of Newcastle (the friend and guardian of the Prince of Wales upon the occasion of his visit to this country in 1860), Sidney Herbert, James Ramsay (afterwards Earl of Dalhousie, son of a former Governor-General of Canada), Lord Canning, Robert Lowe, Edward Cardwell, and Roundell Palmer—now Lord Selborne. Between young Bruce and two of these—Ramsay and Canning—an uncommonly warm intimacy prevailed; and it is a somewhat curious coincidence that they lived to be the three successive rulers of India during the transition period of British Government there. Ramsay, then Lord Dalhousie, was the last Governor before the breaking out of the Mutiny; Canning was Governor during the Mutiny; and Bruce, as Lord Elgin, was the first who went out as Viceroy after the Indian Empire was brought under the government of the Crown.

Among the brilliant young men who were his friends and compeers at college, James Bruce is said to have been as conspicuous as any for the brilliancy and originality of his speeches at the Union. Mr. Gladstone himself has said of him, "I well remember placing him, as to the natural gift of eloquence, at the head of all those I knew, either at Eton or at the University." But he was not less distinguished by maturity of judgment, by a love of abstract thought, and by those philosophical studies which lay the foundation of true reasoning in the mind. In 1834 he published a pamphlet to protest against a monopoly of liberal sentiment by the Whigs; and in 1841 he went into the House of Commons for Southampton on Conservative principles, which had, however, a strong flavour of Whiggism about them. He soon developed a remarkable aptitude for political life. He seconded the address which turned out Lord Melbourne and brought in Sir Robert Peel, in a speech prophetically favourable to free trade, and he would doubtless have been a cordial supporter of Peel's liberal commercial policy had not his Parliamentary career speedily come to an end. In 1840, George, Lord Bruce, elder brother of James, died unmarried, and the latter became heir-apparent to the family honours. On the 22nd of April, 1841, he married Elizabeth Mary, daughter of Mr. C. L. Canning Bruce. The death of his father soon afterwards raised him to the Scottish peerage. He had no seat in either House of Parliament, and in 1842 he accepted from Lord Stanley the office of Governor of Jamaica—an appointment which decided his vocation in life. With his career at Jamaica we have no special concern, and it need not detain us. It may be remarked, in passing, that he remained there four years, during which period—owing, doubtless, in [Pg 99]some measure to the sudden death of his wife soon after their arrival in the island—he led a somewhat secluded life. He quitted his post in 1846, and returned to England. Almost immediately after his arrival there, Lord Grey, the Colonial Secretary, offered him the position of Governor-General of British North America. He accepted it, says his biographer, not in the mere spirit of selfish ambition, but with a deep sense of the responsibility attached to it. It was arranged that he should go to Canada at the beginning of the new year. In the interval, on November 7th, he married Lady Mary Louisa Lambton, daughter of the first Earl of Durham, whose five months' sojourn in this country in the year 1838 was destined to produce such important and beneficial effects upon our Constitution. Lord Elgin was wont to say that "The real and effectual vindication of Lord Durham's memory and proceedings will be the success of a Governor-General of Canada who works out his views of government fairly." Thus it happened that the young Conservative Peer, who had already shaken off his early Tory prepossessions, found himself called upon to build on the broad foundations laid by the most advanced member of the Liberal party of that day, and to inaugurate the new principle of government which Lord Durham and Charles Buller had conceived, not merely in Canada, but throughout the colonial empire of Britain. Leaving his bride behind him, to follow at a less inclement season, he set out for the seat of his new duties early in January, and reached Montreal on the 29th. He took up his quarters at Monklands, the suburban residence of the Governor.

Nine years had elapsed since the rebellion of 1837. Lord Durham, Lord Sydenham, Sir Charles Bagot, Lord Metcalfe, and Lord Cathcart, had successively governed the North American Provinces in that short interval, but—except in the case of Lord Durham—with not very satisfactory results. The method of Responsible Government was new with us. The smouldering fires of rebellion were only just extinguished. The repulsion of races was at its strongest. The deposed clique which had virtually ruled the colony was still furious, and the depressed section was suspicious and restive. It was just at the time, too, when, between English and American legislation, we were suffering at once from the evils of protection and free trade. The principles upon which Lord Elgin undertook to carry on the administration of the affairs of the colony were that he should identify himself with no party, but make himself a mediator and moderator between the influential of all parties; that he should retain no ministers who did not enjoy the confidence of the Assembly, or, in the last resort, of the people; and that he should not refuse his consent to any measure proposed by his Ministry, unless it should be of an extreme party character, such as the Assembly or the people would be sure to disapprove of. For some months after his arrival in this country matters went smoothly enough. The Draper Administration, never very strong, had for several years been growing gradually weaker and weaker, and was now tottering towards its fall; but so far it could command a small majority of votes, and continued to hold the reins of power. The result of the next general elections, however, which were held at the close of the year, was the return of a large preponderance of Reformers, among whom were nearly all the leading spirits of the Reform Party. Upon the opening of Parliament on the 25th of February, 1848, the Draper Administration resigned, and its leader accepted a seat on the Judicial Bench. The Governor accordingly summoned the leaders of the Opposition to his councils, and the Baldwin-Lafontaine Ministry was formed. After a short session the House was prorogued on the 25th [Pg 100]of March. It did not meet again until the 18th of January following. It is hardly necessary to inform the Canadian reader that the Canadian Parliament sat at Montreal at that time. During the session one of the stormiest episodes in our history occurred. Every Canadian who has passed middle age remembers that disturbed time. The excitement arose out of the Rebellion Losses Bill, as it was called—a measure introduced by Mr. Lafontaine, the object of which was to reimburse such of the inhabitants of the Lower Province as had sustained loss from the rebellion of eleven years before. Within a very short time after the close of that rebellion, the attention of both sections of the colony was directed to compensating those who had suffered by it. First came the case of the primary sufferers, if so they may be called; that is, the loyalists, whose property had been destroyed by rebels. Measures were at once taken to indemnify all such persons—in Upper Canada, by an Act passed in the last session of its separate Provincial Parliament; in Lower Canada, by an ordinance of the Special Council, under which the Province was at that time administered. But it was felt that this was not enough; that where property had been wantonly and unnecessarily destroyed, even though it were by persons acting in support of authority, some compensation ought to be given; and the Upper Canada Act above mentioned was amended next year, in the first session of the United Parliament, so as to extend to all losses occasioned by violence on the part of persons acting or assuming to act on Her Majesty's behalf. Nothing was done at this time about Lower Canada; but it was obviously inevitable that the treatment applied to the one Province should be extended to the other. Accordingly, in 1845, during Lord Metcalfe's Government, and under a Conservative Administration, an Address was adopted unanimously by the Assembly, praying His Excellency to cause proper measures to be taken "in order to insure to the inhabitants of that portion of the Province formerly Lower Canada indemnity for just losses by them sustained during the Rebellion of 1837 and 1838." In pursuance of this Address, a Commission was appointed to inquire into the claims of persons whose property had been destroyed in the rebellion; the Commissioners receiving instructions to distinguish the cases of persons who had abetted the said rebellion from the cases of those who had not. The Commissioners made their investigations, and reported that they had recognized, as worthy of further inquiry, claims representing a sum total of £241,965 10s. 5d.; but they added an expression of opinion that the losses suffered would be found, on closer examination, not to exceed the value of £100,000. This report was rendered in April, 1846; but though Lord Metcalfe's Ministry, which had issued the Commission avowedly as preliminary to a subsequent and more minute inquiry, remained in office for nearly two years longer, they took no steps towards carrying out their declared intentions. So the matter stood when the Baldwin-Lafontaine Administration was formed. It was natural that they should take up the work left half done by their predecessors; and early in the session of 1849, Mr. Lafontaine introduced the Rebellion Losses Bill. The Opposition contrived to kindle a flame all over the country. Meetings were held denouncing the measure, and petitions were presented to the Governor with the obvious design of producing a collision between him and Parliament. He was strenuously urged to reserve the Bill for Imperial consideration, in the event of its receiving the sanction of the Canadian Parliament. The Bill was finally passed in the Assembly by forty-seven votes to eighteen. Out of thirty-one members from Upper Canada who voted on the occasion, [Pg 101]seventeen supported and fourteen opposed it; and of ten members for Lower Canada of British descent, six supported and four opposed it. "These facts," (wrote Lord Elgin) "seemed altogether irreconcilable with the allegation that the question was one on which the two races were arrayed against each other throughout the Province generally. I considered, therefore, that by reserving the Bill, I should only cast on Her Majesty and Her Majesty's advisers a responsibility which ought, in the first instance at least, to rest on my own shoulders, and that I should awaken in the minds of the people at large, even of those who were indifferent or hostile to the Bill, doubts as to the sincerity with which it was intended that constitutional Government should be carried on in Canada; doubts which it is my firm conviction, if they were to obtain generally, would be fatal to the connection."

On the 25th of April Lord Elgin went down to the Parliament Buildings and gave his assent to the Bill. On leaving the House he was insulted by the crowd, who pelted him with missiles. In the evening a disorderly mob, intent upon mischief, got together and set fire to the Parliament Buildings, which were burned to the ground. By this wanton act, public property of considerable value, including two excellent libraries, was utterly destroyed. Having achieved their object the crowd dispersed, apparently satisfied with what they had done. The members were permitted to retire unmolested, and no resistance was offered to the military, who appeared on the ground after a brief interval to restore order, and to aid in extinguishing the flames. During the two following days a good deal of excitement prevailed in the streets, and some further acts of incendiarism were perpetrated. Similar scenes, on a somewhat smaller scale, were enacted in Toronto and elsewhere in the Upper Province. The houses of Mr. Baldwin and some other prominent members of the Reform party were attacked, and the owners burned in effigy.

Meanwhile numerously signed addresses came pouring in to the Governor from all quarters, expressing entire confidence in the Administration, and unbounded regret for the indignities to which he had been subjected. Lord Elgin, however, felt bound to tender his resignation to the Home Government. Meanwhile the Bill which had caused such an explosion in the colony was running the gauntlet of the British Parliament. On June 14th it was vehemently attacked in the House of Commons. Mr. Gladstone himself described it as a "measure for rewarding rebels." The strongest pressure had already been put upon Lord Elgin to induce him to refuse the Royal Assent to the Bill. To do so would have been to place himself in direct collision with his Parliament, and this he steadily refused to do. The Home Government, represented by Lord Grey, firmly supported him, approved his policy, and shortly afterwards conferred upon him a British peerage as an acknowledgment of the unshaken confidence of the Queen. Being urgently pressed to remain in office as Governor-General, he consented, and the more readily because the agitation soon quieted down. From this time we hear no more of such disgraceful scenes, but it was long before the old "Family Compact" Party forgave the Governor who had dared to be impartial. By many kinds of detraction they sought to weaken his influence and damage his popularity. And as the members of this Party, though they had lost their monopoly of political power, still remained the dominant class in society, the disparaging tone which they set was taken up not only in the colony itself, but also by travellers who visited it, and by them carried back to infect opinion in England. The result was that persons at home, who had the highest appreciation of Lord Elgin's capacity as a [Pg 102]statesman, sincerely believed him to be deficient in nerve and vigour; and as the misapprehension was one which he could not have corrected, even if he had been aware how widely it was spread, it continued to exist in many quarters until dispelled by the singular energy and boldness, amounting almost to rashness, which he subsequently displayed in the East.

Since the session of 1849 no Parliament has ever sat, nor is any ever again likely to sit, at Montreal. In view of the riots and the burning of the Parliament Buildings it was determined to remove the Legislature, which met at Toronto for the next two years. Subsequently it met alternately at Quebec and Toronto until 1866, since which time Ottawa has been the permanent capital of the Dominion.

After the storm consequent on the Rebellion Losses Bill, the most important event by which Lord Elgin's Canadian administration was characterized was the negotiation of the Reciprocity Treaty with the United States. The conclusion of this Treaty was a matter requiring much time and a good deal of prudent negotiation. In 1854, after the negotiations had dragged on wearily for more than six years, Lord Elgin himself was sent to Washington, in the hope of bringing the matter to a successful issue. He was accompanied on his mission by Mr.—now Sir Francis—Hincks, who was the leader of the Government then in being. Within a few weeks the terms of a Treaty of Reciprocity were agreed upon, and they soon afterwards received the sanction of the Governments concerned. Lord Elgin returned to England at the close of 1854, being succeeded in the government of Canada by Sir Edmund Walker Head, who had examined him for a Merton Fellowship at Oxford in 1833. Soon after Lord Elgin's return home, the Chancellorship of the Duchy of Lancaster was offered him by Lord Palmerston, with a seat in the Cabinet; but he preferred to take no active part in public affairs, and enjoyed an interval of two years' rest from official labour. His subsequent career can only be glanced at very briefly. In 1857 he was sent to China to try what could be done to repair, or to turn to the best account, the mischiefs done by Sir John Bowring's course, and by the patronage of it at home, in the face of the moral reprobation of the people at large. He was present at the taking of Canton, and in conjunction with the French, succeeded by prompt and vigorous measures in reducing the Celestial Empire to terms. After signing a Treaty with the Chinese Commissioners at Tientsin, on the 26th of July, 1858, the conditions of which were highly favourable to the British, he sailed for Japan, and boldly entered the harbour of Jeddo, from which foreigners had always been rigidly excluded. Here he obtained very important commercial privileges for the British, and on the 26th of August concluded a treaty with the Japanese. He returned to England in May, 1859. The merchants of London, in recognition of his immense services to British commerce, did themselves honour by the thoroughness of their acknowledgment of Lord Elgin's services, and presented him with the freedom of the city.

Within a month after his return he accepted the office of Postmaster-General in the Cabinet then formed by Lord Palmerston. He was soon afterwards elected Lord Rector of the University of Glasgow. He held the office of Postmaster-General till the hostile acts of the Chinese Government towards the English and French Ministers in China rendered it necessary that he should go out again. The Chinese Government, untaught by experience, had reöpened the war, and had fired upon the British troops. Lord Elgin was accordingly sent out as a special ambassador, to demand an apology for the attack, and to insist upon a [Pg 103]literal fulfilment of the terms of the Treaty of the previous year. He was also authorized to demand an indemnity for all naval and military expenditure incurred in enforcing these terms. He was as successful on this occasion as on the former one. After opening Pekin to British diplomacy, he returned to England in April, 1861. Almost immediately afterwards he was offered the Viceroyalty of India. This splendid appointment he was not disposed to decline. He accepted, and went out to the seat of his Government, where, during the brief span of life which remained to him, he loyally carried out the wise and equitable policy of Lord Canning, his predecessor in office. He lived only eighteen months longer—a period, says his biographer, hardly sufficient for him to master the details of administration of that great Empire, with which he had no previous acquaintance, and quite insufficient for him to give to the policy of the Government the stamp of his own mind. He died of fatty degeneration of the muscular fibres of the heart, while making a vice-regal excursion through his dominions, on the 20th of November, 1863. He was buried in the cemetery at Dhurmsala, "the place of piety," in a spot selected by Lady Elgin. He was the second British Governor-General of India whose body found a last resting-place there. The other was Lord Cornwallis, whose remains rest at Ghazepore.

"Perhaps," says a sympathetic critic of Lord Elgin's career, "the noblest part of the history of England is to be found in the recorded lives of those who have been her chosen servants, and who have died in that service. Self-control, endurance, and an heroic sense of duty, are more conspicuous in such men than the love of action and fame. But their lives are the landmarks of our race. Lord Elgin, it is true, can hardly be ranked with the first of British statesmen, or orators, or commanders. His services, great as they unquestionably were, had all been performed under the orders of other men. Even among his own contemporaries he fills a place in the second rank. But happy are the country and the age in which such men are to be found in the second rank, and are content to be there."

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It falls to the lot of few persons to be so generally beloved as was the late Dr. Fyfe. He was known to, and revered by, a very large circle of friends, and those friends were not confined to adherents of the particular creed which he himself professed. His character was one of singular beauty and amiability, and his loss was viewed in the light of a calamity, not only by those connected with the Institution over which he presided, but by the entire Baptist denomination in Ontario. By many persons who had no connection with either the Institute or the Baptist Church, Dr. Fyfe was regarded with the reverence due to one whose actions were always marked by thorough conscientiousness of purpose, and whose life was passed in the exercise of true Christian benevolence.

The facts of his life, so far as they have been published, are few in number, and we regret our inability to add much to them at the present time. He was born in the parish of St. André, near Montreal, in Lower Canada, on the 20th of October, 1816. His descent, as indicated by his name, was Scottish. His parents emigrated from Scotland to Lower Canada in the year 1809, about seven years prior to the birth of the subject of this sketch. The boyhood of the latter was passed amid a French Canadian population of the middle and lower orders, which is equivalent to saying that there were no good schools in his neighbourhood. His educational advantages, in those early days were few, and before he had fairly emerged from childhood he began to earn his own living; so that he grew up to young-manhood with but little scholastic training. He became a clerk in a country store, and remained there until several months after completing his nineteenth year. Notwithstanding his limited education he had by this time acquired a reputation for more than ordinary intelligence, and was highly esteemed for the probity and integrity of his character. It was at this time, too, that he first entered upon his spiritual experiences. He awoke to new aims and purposes in life, and resolved to devote himself to the spread of the gospel. In his own language, he was conscious of "a call to do the Lord's work." With a view to fitting himself for the ministry, he abandoned commercial pursuits, and entered as a student at Madison University, in the State of New York. Here he studied with such persistent zeal that he undermined his health, and probably laid the foundation of the slow and wasting disease to which he finally succumbed. He was compelled to discontinue his studies altogether for a time, and to sever his connection with Madison University. Upon regaining a fair degree of health he again betook himself to study, and attended an academy at Worcester, Massachusetts. During vacations, and perhaps at other times, he taught school, and thus obtained [Pg 105]the means of pursuing his studies. After leaving the academy at Worcester he attended for some time at a theological seminary at Newton, near Boston, where he graduated early in 1842. He received ordination at Brookline, Massachusetts, on the 25th of August following, and at once entered upon active work in connection with the ministry of the Baptist Church. His first pastoral charge was at Perth, in the county of Lanark, Upper Canada, where he organized a congregation, over which he presided about a year and a half. At the close of 1843 he consented, at the urgent request of the authorities of the Montreal Baptist College, to take charge of that institution until they could secure a successor to the first president, Dr. Davies, who had removed to Stepney College, London, England. He remained in Montreal about a year, when he was called to the pastorate of the old March Street Church, in Toronto, which was the first Baptist Church established in the city. The congregation had been organized about fourteen years previously, and it met for worship for a considerable time in the old Masonic Hall in Market Lane, now called Colborne Street. A lot was subsequently procured on March Street—a street which became somewhat notorious under its later title of Stanley Street, and which is now called Lombard Street. Here a little church was erected. At that time the street had just been laid out, and there was no reason for doubting that it would become one of the most respectable in the city. "But such," to use Dr. Fyfe's own words, "was not to be its destiny. The chapel itself was very far from being attractive to look at, besides being very small. It could not seat comfortably more than one hundred and sixty people. Miserable houses sprang up all around it; and what was still worse, many of them were inhabited by the most vicious and miserable kind of people, so that the whole street soon became extremely unsavoury in every sense of the term. For sixteen long years the outward condition of the Baptists of this city might be compared to that of those unhappy criminals who were, by their Tuscan tyrants, tied hand to hand and face to face with the rotting dead. The surroundings of the church were constantly growing worse, and thus the last part of their sojourn there was worse than the first. Often, on Sabbath evenings, a policeman was secured to patrol the sidewalk in front of March Street Church, to keep down the uproar which the children and others would thoughtlessly, or wilfully, make in the neighbourhood." Under such circumstances it is not surprising that its history should be unpropitious. The first pastor, the Rev. A. Stewart, resigned his charge in 1836, and was followed in rapid succession by several others who filled up the interval between that date and September, 1844, when Dr. Fyfe was called to the pastorate of the weak and scattered congregation. At that time the nominal membership amounted to only sixty-four, and the salary paid was very small. In spite of the discouraging circumstances by which he found himself surrounded, and the apparently insuperable obstacles he had to surmount, the new pastor set to work with energy and enthusiasm, and a few months before his resignation, in the autumn of 1848, he had the satisfaction of seeing the place of worship transferred from the little chapel in March Street to a much more commodious building in a better locality. It was mainly to Dr. Fyfe's exertions that the building of the Bond Street Baptist Church was due, but soon after it was ready for use he gave up his charge and returned to his former incumbency in Perth. After remaining there a year, his health again became precarious, and he was compelled to seek a milder climate. He spent four years in charge of a congregation in Warren, Rhode Island, and two in the pastorate of [Pg 106]another in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and after these seven years of absence was recalled to the Bond Street Church in 1855. The congregation had meanwhile made considerable progress under the ministrations of the Rev. Dr. Pyper, and before the close of Dr. Fyfe's five years' pastorate a second church was established. In 1860 he reluctantly resigned his charge once more, to assume control, at the urgent request of the leading members of the denomination, of the new college which had been established at Woodstock. The congregation which he left, notwithstanding several secessions, and the establishment of new congregations, went on increasing in numbers until the old Bond Street Church was found to be altogether too limited in capacity, and the fine edifice now occupied by the congregation on Jarvis Street took its place. As Dr. Fyfe had been the first occupant of the Bond Street pulpit it was deemed fitting that he should preach the last sermon to be delivered to the congregation before it should be abandoned, and from the survey of the history of the Church which that sermon contains many of the above particulars have been derived.

Robert Alexander Fyfe
Robert Alexander Fyfe

During the remainder of his life—embracing a period of about eighteen years—he occupied the position of Principal of the Canadian Institute at Woodstock, a position for which he was in many respects admirably fitted. The proposal to embark in such an enterprise emanated from himself, while he was still pastor of the Bond Street Church. The Institute was incorporated by the Legislature in the Session of 1857-8, but not opened for instruction until the summer of 1860. With its subsequent history and development Dr. Fyfe's name must ever be identified. It was not endowed, but has had to depend for its establishment and support upon voluntary subscriptions. It had been in existence only about six months when the building in which it was carried on was burned down by the act of an incendiary, and the insurance fell $6,000 short of the debt due upon it. Dr. Fyfe applied himself to the task of raising subscriptions and reconstructing with great energy and zeal. The enthusiasm of the Baptist denomination throughout the country was aroused, and in less than four months a sufficient amount was raised to set about the work of rebuilding on a more extended scale. In a short time the main building was erected, and other buildings have since been added, with ample accommodation for imparting both a theological and a literary training. With its subsequent history, and with the contemplated removal of the theological department to Toronto, we have no present concern. Dr. Fyfe devoted himself to the duties and responsibilities of his office with great vigour—a vigour which was never relaxed until failing health compelled him to desist from the most arduous of his labours. He sympathized warmly with the personal aspirations of the students, and was always ready and willing to aid them with his counsel and experience. He was regarded by them with feelings little short of veneration, and to many of them he stood almost in the light of a parent. But the seeds of disease had years before been planted in his frame, and he was subject to occasional attacks of almost complete physical prostration, which incapacitated him from either bodily or mental labour. He himself knew that he held his life by even a frailer tenure than is the common lot of humanity. For some years before his death he had been gradually sinking under the ravages of an incurable malady. The end came on Wednesday, the 4th of September, 1878, when he died calmly and peacefully at his home in Woodstock. His funeral took place at Toronto, two days afterwards.

Dr. Fyfe was twice married. His first wife, to whom he was united on the 17th of February, 1843, was formerly Miss Jane [Pg 107]Maclerie Thomson, of Toronto. By this lady he had two sons, both of whom were taken from him by death in infancy. In 1847 their mother was also taken from him. On the 15th of August, 1848, he married his second wife, who still survives him.

One of Dr. Fyfe's contemporaries has thus summed up the various traits by which he was distinguished:—"His intellectual character was of a high order. The faculties of his mind were originally strong and active, and were developed and improved during his collegiate course and his subsequent life. On all subjects to which he turned his attention, whether literary, political or religious, he formed clear and comprehensive views; and whether he undertook to write or speak, he exhibited the riches of his mind in a diction uniformly natural, perspicuous and manly. His eloquence was generally impressive, and sometimes powerful. He was distinguished by patience and fairness in his investigations, by the clearness and force of his reasoning, by skill in devising measures, and by uncommon executive ability. He was active in doing good, and was continually consulting and labouring for the welfare of others. The affection which predominated in his breast, next to a supreme love to God, was compassion for the souls of men, and a strong desire for their salvation. This was the inward power which moved him. It was not a feverish heat, but the even pulsation and glow of health. What others might do from sudden excitement or the spur of the occasion, he did from principle—principle which was strong, uniform and abiding."

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In the old ante-rebellion days of Upper Canada, when a Family Compact still held the reins of government, and jealously guarded every avenue to power; in the days of a venal judiciary, and a press prostituted to the will of the ruling oligarchy; when every project for the improvement of the condition of the people was trodden under foot, and when a few patriotic and enlightened men were valiantly fighting the battle which at last brought about Responsible Government, no name was more familiar in the ears of Upper Canadians than was that of the subject of this sketch. Local historians have done very inadequate justice to the part played by him in our history, and his connection with Canada terminated more than forty years ago, so that during the last two generations he has quietly passed out of public memory. Yet the name of Marshall Spring Bidwell is one which deserves to be held in perpetual remembrance by the people of this country as that of a legislator of singular purity of character, who struggled and suffered for the national freedom.

He was born at Stockbridge, in the State of Massachusetts, in the month of February, 1799. His father, Barnabas Bidwell, was a lawyer of considerable local eminence, who had been engaged in the active practice of his profession ever since the termination of the War of Independence. The latter rose in his profession by steady degrees, and before reaching middle age became Attorney-General of the State. He was afterwards returned as Member of Congress, and seems to have served in that capacity during at least one session. Later still, he became Treasurer of the county of Berkshire, in his native State. He was a man of high culture and attainments, both in his profession and out of it, and was distinguished for courtly and agreeable manners, great powers of conversation, and a high degree of mental activity. He was an ardent Republican, and took a most pronounced stand in the national politics. His career as a politician was somewhat stern and uncompromising, and while it secured him many warm friends, it also brought down upon his head the fierce enmity of some of his opponents. During the year 1810, while he continued to be Treasurer of Berkshire County, he was charged by some of the most virulent of his enemies with certain irregularities in the discharge of his official duties. The whole truth with regard to this much-discussed affair will probably never be ascertained. The best opinion seems to be that Mr. Bidwell's enemies had determined upon his downfall, and had subtly woven a mesh round him from which exile was the only escape. An indictment was laid against him, and a warrant issued for his apprehension. He was very doubtful about obtaining justice, and resolved not to stand his trial. He came over to Canada [Pg 109]before the warrant could be executed, bringing with him his family, consisting of his son, Marshall, the subject of this sketch—who was then a bright, intelligent lad in his twelfth year—and a daughter several years younger. They settled at the little village of Bath, on the Bay of Quinté, where the father obtained employment as a school teacher. In 1812 the elder Bidwell took the oath of allegiance, and thenceforth began to take part in the politics of his adopted country, which at that time groaned under an irresponsible executive and a multitude of evil counsellors. Upon Robert Gourlay's arrival in the country, Mr. Bidwell made his acquaintance, and rendered him valuable assistance in the preparation of his work on Canada. After spending several years at Bath, the family removed to Kingston, and soon afterwards young Marshall entered the office of Mr. Washburne as a student-at-law. The youth's father was proud of the abilities of his son, and devoted much time to the direction of his studies and the formation of his mind. The latter was reputed to be one of the most brilliant young men in the country. The promise of the youth was fully borne out by the performance of the man. Upon the completion of his term of study he was called to the Bar, at which, notwithstanding his youth, he at once took a foremost place. His practice was by no means confined to his own neighbourhood, and his services as counsel were sought after in important cases from all parts of the Province.

Early in life, and while yet a student, he married Miss Willcox, a young lady of great moral and social worth, belonging to a family resident in the neighbourhood of Bath. Soon after his marriage, and before his call to the Bar, he united himself with the Presbyterian Church, of which he continued to be an earnest and devoted member down to the time of his death.

About the time of his son's call to the Bar, the elder Bidwell offered himself as a candidate for the Provincial Legislature as Representative of the United Counties of Lennox and Addington. He was returned by a large majority, and the members of the Family Compact looked forward with much anxiety to the ensuing session, for Mr. Bidwell was a Reformer of the most pronounced type, and endowed with an eloquence, an aggressiveness, and a keenness in controversy not often found in Canadian Parliaments in those days. Before the House met, however, the circumstances under which he had emigrated from Massachusetts became known, and a petition was at once filed against his election on the ground that he was an alien and a fugitive from justice. Upon the opening of the session the matter came on for discussion, and Mr. Bidwell defended himself in a speech which was long remembered for its eloquence and vigour. He succeeded in convincing all whose judgments were not warped by personal or political prejudice that, so far as his flight from Massachusetts was concerned, he had been the victim of a powerful clique of enemies. The House, nevertheless, by a majority of one, decided against him on the ground of his being an alien, and as the constituency of Lennox and Addington was thus left without a representative a writ was issued for a new election there. Young Bidwell, who had by this time attained his majority, offered himself as a candidate, but his candidature was objected to on the ground that he also was an alien, and his opponent—a Mr. Clark—was accordingly returned. In 1824, however, an Act was passed whereby a continuous residence of seven years in this Province rendered a foreigner eligible for a seat in the Assembly, except in the case of a person who had held any of the principal public offices in the United States. Under this Act Barnabas Bidwell was still ineligible, as he had been Attorney-General of Massachusetts; but the [Pg 110]son's disqualification was removed, and at the next election the latter was triumphantly returned as member for Lennox and Addington. He was then twenty-five years of age. He continued to sit in the House for eleven successive years, during which period he occupied a foremost place in the ranks of the Reform Party. At the opening of the session of 1829 he was elected Speaker, and was reëlected to that position in the subsequent session of 1835.

His influence began to be felt long before the close of his first parliamentary session. While not inferior to his father in eloquence, earnestness and genuine desire for Reform, he held broader and more statesmanlike views than any man who then sat in the Assembly. He was, moreover, of a character so amiable, sincere and lovable that he not only aroused the enthusiasm of his co-adjutors, but extorted the respect of the bitterest of his opponents. To tell at length the story of his parliamentary career would be to write the political history of Upper Canada during a period of eleven years. No man contributed more effectually to the overthrow of the Family Compact. While as zealous for Reform as was William Lyon Mackenzie himself, Mr. Bidwell was no mere partisan. He took a prominent part in opposing Mr. Mackenzie's repeated expulsions from the House for reporting its proceedings and publishing libels on some of the members. Without justifying, or seeking to palliate the offence, Mr. Bidwell questioned the power of Parliament to take cognizance of it. He thought that the question of guilt and punishment belonged to the courts of law; that it was not wise or proper for members of the House, however much aggrieved by the publications, to act both as prosecutors and judges, and that the proceedings were infractions rather than vindications of parliamentary privilege. He voted against each of the expulsions. Mr. Boulton, then Attorney-General, and Mr. Hagerman, Solicitor-General, were members of the House, and the recognized leaders of the Tory party. They both voted for those expulsions. The English Ministry not only adopted Mr. Bidwell's views, but, regarding Mr. Boulton and Mr. Hagerman as responsible for those violent and ill-advised acts, signified its disapprobation by dismissing them from office.

As an instance of his moral elevation, some circumstances which occurred while he was Speaker of the Assembly may be mentioned. During the administration of Sir John Colborne, and while the Reform Party had a large majority in the House, Sir John was exhibited in effigy in the streets of Hamilton. The House appointed a committee of investigation, with power to send for persons and papers, and Mr. Macnab (who was then a young lawyer of Hamilton) and Mr. Solicitor-General Boulton were cited to appear and be examined. They refused to answer certain questions, and having been reported to the House, were required to attend and answer for the contempt. Mr. Macnab came first, and not exercising much discretion, was punished by actual imprisonment. But, as his Party regarded him as a martyr, the event gave an impetus to his fortunes, and so it was that, instead of living, as he might have done, an obscure Hamilton lawyer, he became a member of Parliament, and died Sir Allan Macnab. When Mr. Solicitor-General Boulton came before the House, he understood its spirit, and so adroitly explained his offence that, after debate, it was resolved that he should be let off with a reprimand from the Speaker. It was believed, however, that this would be no slight penalty. The Solicitor-General had been a principal opponent of the elder Mr. Bidwell, had favoured his removal from the House, and the adoption of the special statute which had closed the doors of Parliament to him forever. In the language of the newspapers [Pg 111]of the day, there was a deadly feud between the Bidwells and the Boultons. Great concern was felt on the part of Mr. Boulton's friends lest he should be roughly handled, for it was feared that the son would pay off all the father's old debts. Mark the sequel. The occasion when the Solicitor-General was brought to the Bar of the House was one of great ceremony and solemnity. In the first part of the reprimand, when the Speaker was vindicating the power of Parliament, and stating that he could not forget that its power and dignity had been offended and sought to be impaired by one who was the legal adviser of the Government—an example most pernicious—Mr. Boulton appeared calm, if not indifferent; but as the Speaker proceeded, and administered the required reproof with such magnanimity and forbearance that a mere observer could not have told whether the offender was or was not a personal friend of the Speaker, Mr. Boulton, recognizing the presence of a superior mind and heart, was humbled, and finally left the House profoundly affected. The London Times, in publishing that reprimand, declared it to be the best paper of the kind on record. These circumstances are not without present interest as illustrating how Marshall Spring Bidwell, when charged with the performance of a great constitutional duty, could rise to the dignity of the occasion, quite above mere personal and party dissensions, and could discharge that duty in the spirit of a lofty and high-minded statesman.

The peculiar circumstances under which Mr. Bidwell ceased to reside in Canada must now be related. All readers of these pages are familiar with the leading facts in the history of the insurrection of December, 1837, under the auspices of William Lyon Mackenzie. The rising was quickly suppressed, and the insurgents dispersed; but among the banners captured from them was one bearing the inscription, "Bidwell and the Glorious Minority." This was, in fact, an old political banner which had been used on an earlier occasion, and had been appropriated by the insurgents, whose hasty preparation and scanty means compelled them to adopt and use imperfect ensigns as well as arms. Nothing could be less compatible with Mr. Bidwell's peaceful and law-loving nature than violent and insurrectionary measures. His reverence for law and order was part of his very being, and nothing could be more certain than his nonconcurrence in the course of the revolutionary party, even had its movement been less desperate and certain of failure than it was. But he was a thorn in the flesh of Sir Francis Bond Head, who had succeeded Sir John Colborne as Governor, and the capture of the flag gave Sir Francis the opportunity he desired. He notified Mr. Bidwell of the capture; intimated the existence of letters and other evidence implicating him in the rebellion, and rendering him liable to prosecution for high treason. He further stated to Mr. Bidwell that martial law was about to be declared, and that he could not protect him from arrest; but informed him that, in consideration of his unblemished private character and high professional standing, he would not be disturbed if he saw fit to depart from Canada. Mr. Bidwell, perfectly conscious of his own absolute innocence of participation in the plans and actions of the insurgents, at the same time knew that the country was wild with wrath and excitement—that the exasperated Tories were at such a time likely to rush to quick judgments, and that he was especially obnoxious to them as one of the ablest of their constitutional adversaries. Under these circumstances he foresaw nothing but personal embarrassment, the possible ruin of some of his friends, and the total interruption, perhaps for an indefinite and ruinous period, of his peaceful and professional pursuits. He therefore accepted [Pg 112]the Governor's proposition, and left Canada for New York, where he was at once admitted to the Bar by courtesy, and where he entered upon the practice of his profession. This was in the month of January, 1838. He soon became known as an able and erudite lawyer, a dignified, refined, and accomplished gentleman; a warm, generous, and noble man. His practice became large and lucrative, and he devoted himself to his professional duties with industry and zeal.

Soon after this time Sir Francis Bond Head was recalled. He prorogued the Legislature, which was then (March, 1838) in session, and his disastrous administration of Upper Canadian affairs came to an end. He prepared to return to England by way of Halifax, but upon being informed that there was a plot to assassinate him before he could embark there, he determined to return by way of New York. Upon arriving there he took up his quarters at the City Hotel, where he invited Mr. Bidwell to call upon him. The invitation was accepted, and at the interview which then took place, Sir Francis said:—"I think I ought to tell you, Mr. Bidwell, that you are the cause of my being recalled. I was instructed by the Colonial Secretary to place your name on the list of Judges of the Court of Queen's Bench, and was induced to send a remonstrance. That instruction was renewed, and influenced by my advisers, a further remonstrance was sent. Afterwards I received notice that my successor had been appointed." Mr. Bidwell then, perhaps, calling up in review all that he had lost and suffered, said:—"You may be correct in that, sir, but I now see why it was desired that I should leave the Province. You wished to be able to say to your superiors, whom you had disobeyed, that the man they intended to honour was a rebel, and had left the country." Mr. Bidwell retired without ceremony. But as an instance of the gentleness of the man's spirit, a gentleness which could not let the sun go down upon his wrath, he had not walked more than a block from the hotel before he felt ashamed of having been in such a temper, and was inclined to return and say so to Sir Francis, and bid him a respectful farewell. It is almost consoling to know that though he cherished no resentment against Sir Francis, he finally determined not to return to the hotel.

A well-known Canadian historian, while admitting that Sir Francis Head acted dishonourably in thus forcing Mr. Bidwell into exile, in order to sustain his own conduct in not raising him to the Bench, remarks, very unjustly, that there seems to have been a secret consciousness of guilt on the part of Mr. Bidwell. He adds:—"An innocent man would scarcely have pronounced a voluntary sentence of expatriation on himself, as he well knew that the guilty only had anything to dread from British law and British justice." But it should not be assumed that Mr. Bidwell tamely accepted the condition imposed as to his leaving the Province. He was under terrible constraint; an extremity having few precedents. In the interview to which the Governor had called him he was assured that martial law was about to be declared; that his actual imprisonment was inevitable. Sir Francis, in great apparent tribulation, and with tears in his eyes, assured Mr. Bidwell, whom he called his friend, that he would not be able to protect him; and that his safety depended upon his departure from the Province. At that time the popular excitement and turmoil were very great, and the extent of the rising throughout the Provinces, and its probable duration, could not be known. However free Mr. Bidwell may have been from all taint of complicity in the rebellion, the imminence of martial law, and the prospect of indefinite imprisonment, might well be sufficient to appal the stoutest heart. A consciousness of innocence, with no hope [Pg 113]of being heard in declaring it until after long deprivation and suffering, would not have given the most sanguine man much strength. It has been believed, and perhaps justly, in view of Sir Francis's character, and of strictures published by him in England unfriendly to Mr. Bidwell, that the consent thus wrung from the latter was not unwisely given.

After the first shock of the rebellion was over, Mr. Bidwell's return to Canada was earnestly desired by many of its best and most prominent citizens, and he received assurances of the welcome and preferment which would await his coming. Upon the accession to power of the Reform Party a seat on the Judicial Bench was offered to him. As his return to this country, however, was necessarily a condition precedent to the actual making of the appointment, he felt himself compelled to decline the proffered honour. He had already found abundant professional occupation and social sympathies in his new home, where he determined to remain; though his interest in the home and friends of his earlier life never failed, and his friendships and intercourse with them continued to the end. The thirty-four years of his residence in New York were a period of unbroken, active, distinguished professional labour and usefulness, and at the same time of devoted service in the great religious and charitable institutions with which he was connected. Prominent among the latter were the American Bible Society, of which he was a Director, and the Bank for Savings, of which he was President. The first case of importance in the courts in which he was concerned, after his arrival in New York, was that of James Fenimore Cooper, the well-known novelist, against William L. Stone, for libel, founded on criticisms by the defendant on certain literary labours of the plaintiff. Mr. Bidwell conducted the defence with ability so distinguished as to place him at once in the front rank of the New York Bar. From that time forward he was engaged in very many most important cases in the local courts, in the Court of Errors, the Court of Appeals, and the Supreme Court of the United States.

As a professional adviser he was preëminent. He was profoundly learned in the law. Chancellor Walworth said of him, what can be said of few in these days of Codes and Digests, that he was "a great lawyer." "He had gone back to the sources and fountains, and had studied and mastered the principles and rules of law. He knew not only what they were, but he knew their origin, their history, and the cases in which they had become shaped, modified and determined. Nothing more delighted him than such studies. He often said that he found far more entertainment in tracing some legal principle back through the Reports of the seventeenth century than in perusing the most attractive work of fiction ever written. Not only the provisions of the leading statutes, but their political and legal history were entirely familiar to him. Though he was acquainted with every branch of his profession, including constitutional, commercial, and equity law, he had, perhaps given most attention to the law of real estate, or trusts, and of the construction of wills, and felt himself most fully at home in their discussion." His name is identified with the leading cases of this character in the New York Courts during his time, in the learned arguments of which he bore a distinguished part. His "Points" and "Briefs" were models of compact, clear, and close reasoning, and were enriched by full citations of sustaining authorities and decisions. He argued every question on principle. He was a legal philosopher and reasoner, and was so familiar with the principles that when a case was stated to him he rarely hesitated in pronouncing the law that governed it; and his knowledge of the leading decisions was so [Pg 114]ample that he was generally prepared to cite them from memory. He loved the law, and he practised it not for lucre, or even for fame, but as a science of which he was an ardent votary. He regarded its majesty and sovereignty with reverence. Such was his sense of the duty of administering it in its exact integrity that had he been on the Bench he would have made little of that "bad law" which is said to spring from "hard cases," for he could no more pervert or warp or misrepresent the law than a mathematician could pervert or warp or misrepresent a mathematical demonstration. When on an argument he cited an authority, the Court had no occasion to examine as to the correctness of its presentation. He was wholly incapable of giving any colouring to a decision which he cited, other than that which it properly bore. He was a wise and sagacious counsellor, and possessed largely the gift of strong common sense. He had great vigour and clearness of mind, a strong sense of equity, and his whole life was marked by a purity and truth that knew no shadow of change. His reading beyond his professional studies was very large and varied, and his conversation was illuminated and made charming by his familiarity with science and polite literature. One of his professional associates has left on record that, during a daily intercourse of thirty-four years, passed amid the trying cares and worry and annoyances of active practice, he never heard from Mr. Bidwell one syllable of petulance, impatience or irritability. He had unbounded faith in the Christian religion, the beauty and purity of which he illustrated by his daily life; and he was entirely happy in his reliance on the future which it held out to him.

It was often his expressed wish, and his often uttered prayer, that he might be spared an enfeebled condition of mind or body, and a lingering death. His wish and prayer were granted. On the afternoon of the 24th of October, 1872, while in the full possession of his faculties, and apparently in the enjoyment of perfect health, at the close of a cheerful and varied conversation in his office with one of his associates, followed by a playful and kind remark to another person, he instantly, without a struggle or a sigh, ceased to breathe.

Joseph Howe
Joseph Howe
Lith. by Rolph Smith Ltd Toronto from Photo by W. J. Topley, Ottawa

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"During the old times of persecution four brothers, bearing my name, left the southern counties of England, and settled in four of the old New England States. Their descendants number thousands, and are scattered from Maine to California. My father was the only descendant of that stock who, at the Revolution, adhered to the side of England. His bones rest in the Halifax churchyard. I am his only surviving son; and, whatever the future may have in store, I want, when I stand beside his grave, to feel that I have done my best to preserve the connection he valued, that the British flag may wave above the soil in which he sleeps."

Such is the account of his ancestry given by Mr. Howe himself, in the course of a remarkably eloquent and effective speech delivered by him at Southampton, in England, on the 14th of January, 1851. The father referred to in the foregoing extract was Mr. John Howe, a man of high intelligence and great benevolence of character, who, at the time of the breaking out of the Revolutionary War, resided at Boston, Massachusetts. In his boyhood he had learned the trade of a printer, but had subsequently developed into a newspaper writer, and connected himself with various enterprises, one of which involved the management and part proprietorship of a periodical known as the Massachusetts Gazette. Early in life he married a Miss Minns, of Boston, by whom he had a family of five children. When the war broke out he remained true to the royal side, and was compelled to seek shelter beyond the limits of the revolted colonies. Like a host of his loyal compatriots, he repaired to Nova Scotia, which thenceforward continued to be his home down to the time of his death in 1835. A few years after his arrival in the Province his wife died. Some time afterwards he contracted a second marriage, with a widow, the daughter of a Captain Edes, who, with his wife and two children, came out to settle and carry on business at the South, but whose plans and prospects were marred by the breaking out of the Revolution. By this lady Mr. Howe had two children, a son and daughter. The daughter died at sea, on a return voyage from Peru, whither she had gone to join her husband, and was buried in Virginia. The son is the subject of the present sketch.

Within a short time after taking up his abode in Nova Scotia, Mr. John Howe was appointed to the offices of King's Printer, and Postmaster-General of Nova Scotia, Cape Breton, Prince Edward Island, New Brunswick, and the Bermudas. These offices he subsequently resigned in favour of Mr. John Howe, jr., his eldest son by his first wife. During the early years of the present century he resided in a pleasantly situated cottage on the North West Arm, about two miles from Halifax; and here, in [Pg 116]the month of December, 1804, was born his son Joseph, who was destined to play a part in the history of his native Province second to that of no man of his time.

The first thirteen years of Joseph Howe's life were spent at home. His educational opportunities during this period were few, the nearest school being at Halifax, fully two miles distant; and it may be said that he received little or no regular education. For a child, a walk of two miles over a rough road was only practicable in the summer time, and even in summer his attendance was frequently interrupted. During the wild weather which commonly prevailed there in the winter, daily, or even occasional, attendance was out of the question, and at such times the little fellow was wholly dependent upon his father for instruction. He seems to have done a good deal of desultory reading, as to the nature of which we have no definite information. He was endowed by nature with a rugged constitution, and with a good deal of poetic feeling. Both qualifications received much stimulus from the course of his early life, which was largely spent in the open air. His physical frame was built up by constant bodily exercise; while his fancy was fed by the wild and picturesque scenery of the district.

In 1817 he entered upon a term of apprenticeship to the printing business, in the office of the Gazette, at Halifax, which was owned by his brother, John Howe, jr. He served out his full term, and afterwards worked for several years as a compositor. During all this period he was an omnivorous reader, and though he did not devote himself to any particular line of study, he amassed a great fund of miscellaneous knowledge. He also trained his mind by the practice of poetic composition. Before his term of apprenticeship had expired he had written numerous little poems which were published in the Gazette; and a more ambitious effort, called "Melville Island," seems to have been published in separate form, when he was seventeen years of age. Melville Island stands at the head of the North West Arm, in the neighbourhood of his birthplace, and was used as a receptacle for prisoners during the wars of the last century. Young Joseph Howe was familiar with its scenery, and with the poetic incidents in its history. We have not enjoyed the privilege of reading the poem, and can only pronounce upon it at second hand, but it is said to have attracted some attention; and this and several other pieces in prose and verse from the same hand which almost immediately followed seem to have given the author some local literary reputation. He also acquired a reputation for general intelligence and natural ability. He was clever, sprightly, and quick at repartee. On one occasion, during the early years of his apprenticeship, he was compelled to attend as a witness in one of the local tribunals. In the course of his evidence, the nature of his duties in the printing office was referred to. "So," remarked the judge, "you are the devil?" "Yes, sir," was the reply, "in the office, but not in the Court House." This, though the first, was not the last occasion in his life when he was able to turn the laugh from himself to the Judicial Bench. He had his due share of the hair-breadth escapes incident to an adventurous boyhood. One evening, while taking a solitary swim in "the Arm," he was seized with cramp, and felt himself sinking. He cast an agonized look around, and caught sight of the dearly loved cottage on the hillside, where his mother was just placing a lighted candle on the window-sill. The thought of the grief which would overshadow that mother's heart on the morrow inspired him with strength to give a last despairing kick. The kick dispelled the cramp, and, hastily swimming ashore, he sank down exhausted, but thankful for his deliverance. It was long before he could summon courage to acquaint his parents with the circumstance.

[Pg 117]In 1827 he embarked in the newspaper business on his own account. Conjointly with his friend Mr. James Spike, he purchased the Weekly Chronicle newspaper, the name of which was changed to that of The Acadian, and he then for the first time came before the public of Nova Scotia as a general newspaper writer. "If not entirely unknown and unpractised," says Mr. Annand,4 "he was, as I have often heard him acknowledge, ignorant enough of everything that an editor ought to know. He had a cheerful spirit, however, a ready pen, and tact enough to feel his way and avoid the premature discussion of topics which he did not understand." His writings at this time are said to have been jejune and commonplace enough, and he made no attempt to deal with political questions. Towards the close of the year he sold his interest in the Acadian to his partner, and purchased the Nova Scotian, for the exceptionally high price of £1,050. For seven years he worked steadily on this paper. He at first had to encounter many difficulties, but in the end achieved a success beyond his hopes. "By dint of unwearied industry, a sanguine spirit, and great cheerfulness and good humour," says Mr. Annand, "all the difficulties which beset Mr. Howe's early career as a public journalist were met and overcome, and the Nova Scotian was established on a solid foundation. British, foreign, and colonial newspapers and periodicals, were daily read. The debates in the House of Assembly, and important trials in the courts, were reported by his own hand, and his position naturally brought him into familiar intercourse with nearly all the public men of the day. The establishment of agencies, and the transaction of business, in the interior, compelled him to travel over the inland districts and to visit all the seaport towns. In these journeys many valuable acquaintances were made, and much information was acquired. Gradually he became familiar, not only with the people best worth knowing, and from whom anything could be learnt, but with the whole face of his native country, and with the political literature of all countries which expressed their opinions in the English language. Such leisure as he had was given to more serious investigations, or to the attractive novelties of the day. I have often seen him, during this period, worn out with labour, drawing draughts of refreshment alternately from Bulwer's last novel or from Grotius on National Law. His constitution was vigorous, his zeal unflagging. It was no uncommon thing for him to be a month or two in the saddle; or, after a rubber of racquets, in which he excelled, and of which he was very fond, to read and write for four or five consecutive days without going out of his house." Seven years of this kind of mental training, which preceded his first noticeable display as a public speaker, did much to repair a very defective education.

On the 2nd of February, 1828, he married. His wife was Catharine Susan Ann, only daughter of Captain John McNab, of the Nova Scotia Fencibles. It was a matter of course that a mind constituted like Mr. Howe's should sooner or later begin to interest itself in the political questions of the day. To do so, indeed, was an imperative necessity alike of his position and of his natural temperament. In 1830 he began to publish in his paper a series of "Legislative Reviews," which were written by himself, and continued from year to year. They criticized the acts of public men with great freedom, and their tone was not unlike that of Mr. William Lyon Mackenzie's contemporary diatribes in the Colonial Advocate. As time passed by, the writer gained confidence. His attacks upon public abuses became [Pg 118]more frequent and more virulent, and he began to be looked upon as the champion of popular rights. The institutions of the Province afforded ample scope for the animadversions of such a writer, and the contempt with which those in authority at first professed to regard him soon began to be mingled with no inconsiderable measure of dismay. Responsible Government, in those days, had no place in the constitution of Nova Scotia, any more than it had in that of Canada. The cities were not incorporated, but were governed by magistrates holding their commissions from the Crown, and not subject to public control. As a corollary to such a state of things, there were neglect, corruption, and gross mismanagement of municipal affairs. In Halifax, long impunity had made some of the magistracy exceptionally culpable and careless of popular rights. Mr. Howe, in his paper, had several times commented with asperity upon the extortions and mismanagement of some of the officials. At last, on the 1st of January, 1835, he published an attack so sweeping and exasperating that he was indicted for libel. The attack was couched in the form of a letter addressed to Mr. Howe himself, and, though not written by him, he was of course responsible for its publication. Mr. Howe defended his own cause, and he did so with such power and acumen that he secured an acquittal at the hands of the special jury summoned to try him. The libel was so unmistakable that all the lawyers of Halifax who were consulted on the matter by Mr. Howe declared that any successful defence was out of the question. He was advised to make a humble apology, and to throw himself upon the mercy of the court. He was informed that his rejection of this advice would result in a heavy fine, and perhaps in a long term of imprisonment. "I asked the lawyers to lend me their books," said Mr. Howe, in describing the episode; "I gathered an armful, threw myself on a sofa, and read libel law for a week. By that time I had convinced myself that they were wrong, and that there was a good defence if the case were properly presented to the court and jury. Another week was spent in arranging the facts and public documents on which I relied. I did not get through before a late hour of the evening before the trial, having only had time to write out and commit to memory the two opening paragraphs of the speech. All the rest was to be improvised as I went along. I was very tired, but took a walk with Mrs. Howe, telling her as we strolled to Fort Massey that if I could only get out of my head what I had got into it, the Magistrates could not get a verdict. I was hopeful of the case, but fearful of breaking down, from the novelty of the situation and from want of practice. I slept soundly and went at it in the morning, still harassed with doubts and fears, which passed off, however, as I became conscious that I was commanding the attention of the court and jury. I was much cheered when I saw the tears rolling down one old gentleman's cheek. I thought he would not convict me if he could help it. I scarcely expected an unanimous verdict, as two or three of the jurors were connections, more or less remote, of some of the justices, but I thought they would not agree. The lawyers were all very civil, but laughed at me a good deal, quoting the old maxim, that 'he who pleads his own case has a fool for a client.' But the laugh was against them when all was over." The trial took place before Chief Justice Sir Brenton Halliburton. His Lordship's charge to the jury embodied a luminous exposition of the law of libel, but necessarily bore somewhat hardly upon Mr. Howe. But all was of no avail. Ill would it have been for the liberties of the people of Nova Scotia if Joseph Howe had been convicted of libel. His address to the jury occupied six hours and a quarter. The jury were out only ten [Pg 119]minutes, and returned with a verdict of "Not Guilty." On leaving the Province Building Mr. Howe was borne by the crowd to his home, amidst deafening acclamations. Throughout the city there was high carnival, and that night, speaking from the window of his house, Mr. Howe struck the popular chord when he enjoined upon his audience to teach their children the names of those jurymen who had established the Freedom of the Press.

Mr. Howe's triumphant acquittal was immediately followed by the resignation of all the Halifax magistrates; but the old system, though it had received its death-blow, was not yet quite dead. Other magistrates were selected, and a gentleman learned in the law was appointed Custos. In this way irresponsibility was kept up for several years longer; but it was easy to see that its reign was practically at an end. The people clamoured for an Act of Incorporation; and the clamour was augmented by the intelligence brought across the Atlantic by every mail of the growing agitation for municipal reform in England. We may here anticipate the course of events by saying that in 1840 Mr. Howe accepted office in the Provincial Cabinet, and that next year he had the satisfaction of seeing the old system swept away. Halifax became an incorporated city, and has ever since been ruled by its own elected Mayor and Aldermen.

From the time of his triumphant acquittal on the charge of libel, in 1838, down to the day of his death, in 1873, Joseph Howe, the somewhile printer's boy, was the most noteworthy citizen of his native Province. In recognition of his public-spirited and fearless conduct, his fellow-countrymen resident in New York presented him with a handsome silver pitcher, bearing an inscription suited to the occasion. His popularity steadily increased, and soon extended far beyond the limits of Nova Scotia. Towards the close of the year which was signalized by the trial for libel, his father, Mr. John Howe, already mentioned, died, at the advanced age of eighty-three. The affection which had subsisted between father and son was exceptionally deep and lasting, and the latter, both in his public speeches and in private conversation, made frequent tender references to it in after life. "For thirty years," said he, on one occasion, "my father was my instructor, my playfellow, almost my daily companion. To him I owe my fondness for reading, my familiarity with the Bible, my knowledge of old Colonial and American incidents and characteristics. He left me nothing but his example and the memory of his many virtues, for all that he ever earned was given to the poor. He was too good for this world; but the remembrance of his high principle, his cheerfulness, his child-like simplicity and truly Christian character is never absent from my mind."

In the month of November, 1836, Mr. Howe was for the first time elected to a seat in Parliament, having been returned, along with his friend and relative, Mr. William Annand, for the county of Halifax. He continued to sit in the Assembly, almost without interruption, until 1863, when he was appointed Fishery Commissioner. He from the first took a conspicuous part in the proceedings, and surprised all who heard him by the readiness he displayed in debate, and by the tact and boldness with which he encountered those who, up to his advent were the acknowledged leaders of the Assembly. He laboured unceasingly on behalf of Responsible Government, and contributed more than any other man in Nova Scotia to bring it about. For the acquisition of Responsible Government, municipal institutions, and freedom of expression of public opinions, Nova Scotia must ever owe a deep debt of gratitude to the memory of Joseph Howe. But, though a thorough-paced reformer, his zeal for reform was tempered by patriotism and discretion. With the insurrectionary movements [Pg 120]in the sister Provinces he had no sympathy; and, though urgently importuned to ally himself with similar projects in his own Province, he declined to fight for freedom otherwise than by legitimate and constitutional means. He had faith in the mollifying influences of time, and frequently entered his protest against what he called attempts to "bully the British Government." He did not approve of accomplishing beneficent reforms by physical force; more especially where, as in the Canadas, there never was even a remote hope of accomplishing more than a temporary success by such means.

In 1838 he visited Great Britain and the continent, and in company with Judge Haliburton5 travelled over a large portion of Europe. During their passage across the Atlantic, having arrived within a few hundred miles of the Irish coast, the vessel on which they were embarked was overtaken by the Sirius, the pioneer trans-Atlantic steamship, which was then returning from her trial trip to America. There was no wind, and their brig could make but little headway. The mails were transferred to the Sirius, which steamed off in spite of the dead calm, and was soon lost to sight. This little episode was very suggestive to the minds of Mr. Howe and Judge Haliburton. They discussed the subject of ocean steam navigation daily until their arrival in England, by which time they had formed a plan upon which they at once acted. In concert with other colonists whom they encountered in London, they made strong representations to the Home Office in favour of a subsidy for the conveyance of the mails across the Atlantic by steam. These representations were taken under consideration, and in due time tenders were invited. A few months later Mr.—afterwards Sir Samuel—Cunard, a native of Nova Scotia, secured the contract, and established the magnificent line of mail steamers which bears his name.

Mr. Howe returned home in November, 1838, and at once plunged into hard work. He devoted himself to obtaining the concession of Responsible Government, with what success has already been stated. The fight was a hard one, and was waged with fierceness on both sides. The Lieutenant-Governor was Sir Colin Campbell, an old soldier who, by the strange perversity of Canadian historians, has been identified with the great man who was subsequently raised to the peerage by the title of Lord Clyde. As matter of fact the whilome Lieutenant-Governor of Nova Scotia came of a different family, and, so far as can be ascertained, had no affinity whatever with the hero of the Alma, Balaklava and Lucknow. The Sir Colin Campbell known to Nova Scotian history, previous to his arrival in the Province, had had a sufficiently creditable military career, and had seen gallant service in Spain and elsewhere; but his military training, and the natural bent of his mind, had been such as to unfit him for the post of a Civil ruler. As ruler of a country where despotism prevailed, he would have been a just-minded and most beneficent despot. He could never understand what "the common people" meant by talking about their "rights." What Sir Charles Metcalfe was in Upper Canada, such was Sir Colin Campbell in Nova Scotia—the obstructor of liberty, and the foe to constitutional progress. He knew nothing and cared nothing for politics. His statesmanship was on a par with that of Sir Francis Bond Head, and it was an absurd mistake on the part of the Home Government to appoint him to the position in [Pg 121]which he now found himself. The history of his Nova Scotian Administration is simply a chapter in his life which every one would wish to see obliterated. Between him and Joseph Howe it was impossible that there should be much community of sentiment, and an antagonism arose between them immediately after the assumption of the Lieutenant-Governorship by the former. Sir Colin was wont to sneer at Responsible Government and its promoters, just as Sir Charles Metcalfe did in Upper Canada a few years later. The Liberal Party of Nova Scotia, however, steadily increased in number and influence, and won important concessions. The publication of Lord Durham's "Report" inspired them with high hopes. During the session of 1840 Mr. Howe introduced into the Assembly four resolutions directed against the Executive Council, and declaring that that Body, as then constituted, did not enjoy the confidence of the country. These resolutions, after a long debate, were sustained by a vote of thirty to twelve, and were then submitted to the Lieutenant-Governor, who, however, declined to take any steps towards remodelling the Council, and persisted in ordering matters after his own fashion. The Assembly accordingly, on motion of Mr. Howe, adopted an address to the Crown petitioning for the Lieutenant-Governor's removal. He was soon afterwards recalled, and Viscount Falkland, a Lord of the Royal Bedchamber, and a son of William the Fourth by Mrs. Jordan, was appointed his successor. Soon after Lord Falkland's arrival, four members of the Executive Council who held no seats in either branch of the Legislature were informed that their services could no longer be retained, as their places were required in order that gentlemen who could bring to the support of Government popular qualities and influence might be called round the Queen's representative. Mr. Howe and another representative Reformer—Mr. McNab—were invited to accept seats in the Council, and the invitation was complied with. It was evident that Responsible Government would now become an accomplished fact.

Sir Colin Campbell, though his statesmanship was not of a high order, was personally popular with all classes in the Province; and just before his departure he gave a signal proof that rancour and littleness had no place in his heart. He and Mr. Howe encountered each other at Lord Falkland's first levee. Many of the prominent public men of the Province availed themselves of the opportunity to bid a final farewell to the retiring Lieutenant-Governor, and to shake him warmly by the hand. Mr. Howe's opposition had been so unceasing, and so productive of important results, that he did not presume to personally address the man whom he had so signally worsted. He merely bowed to the latter, and was passing out. But Sir Colin was not the man to cherish ill-feeling against an honourable foe whose genuine manhood he was well able to appreciate. He called out to Mr. Howe, and extended his hand, saying, "We must not part in that way, Mr. Howe. We fought out our differences of opinion honestly. You have acted like a man of honour. There is my hand." Mr. Howe was not backward in accepting the tendered reconciliation, and thus was buried an enmity which, in smaller minds, would have rankled for years.

At the ensuing elections Mr. Howe and his friend Mr. Annand were again returned for the county of Halifax, the former making the declaration from the hustings that he and Mr. McNab, his colleague in the Council, held their places by the tenure of public confidence, and would tender their resignations to the Governor the moment that the support of the people's representatives was withdrawn. The contest, under the old law, lasted a fortnight, and four Reformers were triumphantly returned for the [Pg 122]metropolitan town and county. On the meeting of the House Mr. Howe was elected to the Speakership. It was during this session that the Act incorporating Halifax was passed. At the close of the session Mr. Howe paid his first visit to Canada, and was present at the opening of the first session of Parliament under the Union. He was cordially received by Lord Sydenham, and by the prominent politicians on both sides. He was very favourably impressed by what he saw of the country, and formed sanguine anticipations as to its future.

During the session of 1843, Mr. Howe, having accepted the appointment of Collector of Colonial Revenue, vacated by the death of the previous incumbent, resigned the office of Speaker of the Assembly, and was succeeded by Mr.—now Sir—William Young, the present Chief Justice of Nova Scotia. He retained his seat in the Assembly, and took a conspicuous part in the debates of the session. The most important of these, in consideration of its ultimate results, was on the subject of granting endowments to denominational colleges. Petitions were presented to the House asking for two such endowments. A series of resolutions was introduced by Mr. Annand, setting out that four denominational colleges already existed, all of which were largely dependent upon Government aid; that one good college, free from sectarian control, and open to all denominations, maintained by a common fund, and rallying around it the affections of the whole people, would be adequate to the requirements of the population, and sufficiently burthensome to the revenue; and that such an institution would elevate the Provincial character, remove existing difficulties, provide the youth with the blessings of a collegiate education, and attract students to its classes from the surrounding colonies. These resolutions received cordial support from Mr. Howe, and were carried by a majority of five; whereupon a committee was appointed to prepare and bring in a Bill for the purpose of carrying them into effect. Mr. Johnston, the Attorney-General, who was the leader of the Tory Party, favoured the continuance of sectarian colleges, and he and Mr. Howe were thus brought into direct antagonism. Meetings, largely favourable to the Attorney-General's cause, were held throughout the Province, and, without consultation with Mr. Howe, Lord Falkland was induced by the other members of the Cabinet to dissolve the House. This proceeding on the part of the Lieutenant-Governor was not unnaturally regarded by the Reform Party as an unwarrantable exercise of the prerogative. Mr. Howe was reëlected by acclamation. Soon afterwards, the Attorney-General's brother-in-law, who had no seat in either branch of the Legislature, and who was an unknown and untried man, was appointed a Member of Council, and this without any consultation with Mr. Howe or his Reform colleagues, Messrs. Uniacke and McNab. Those three gentlemen accordingly promptly resigned their seats in the Council, giving formal reasons, in writing, for doing so. An unseemly quarrel, provoked by the arbitrary conduct of the Lieutenant-Governor, followed. The House of Assembly discussed the situation for fourteen days, and when a vote was taken, mildly censuring the Governor for his departure from the principles of Responsible Government, Mr. Johnston found himself sustained by a very small majority. Later in the session, Mr. Howe moved a vote of want of confidence in the Executive, but the motion was defeated by a majority of three. Overtures were made to him and his two former colleagues to resume their seats in the Council, which they declined to do. The controversy running high, Mr. Howe, who had sold the Nova Scotian in 1841, returned to the editorial chair, having undertaken the charge of the Nova Scotian and also [Pg 123]of the Chronicle, which was owned by his friend Mr. Annand. Then began a newspaper war of almost unparalleled ferocity, which was kept up without intermission until the Lieutenant-Governor's influence in the Province was totally destroyed. Among the hundred or more lampoons hurled at him, the one which obtained the greatest notoriety was a doggerel effusion from the pen of Mr. Howe himself, which appeared in the columns of the Nova Scotian, and which was called "The Lord of the Bedchamber." Perusing it at this distance of time, it seems inconceivable that so contemptible a production should have wrought such an effect. The opening verse will give some idea of its tone and spirit:

"The Lord of the Bedchamber sat in his shirt
(And D——dy the pliant was there),
And his feelings appeared to be very much hurt,
And his brow overclouded with care."

This probably does not strike the critical reader as being of excruciating keenness, yet it is a fair sample of the composition as a whole. Indeed, the crushing severity of this first stanza was particularly enlarged upon by the Attorney-General during a grave discussion of this weighty matter by a committee of the House. In replying to the Attorney-General, Mr. Howe said that it was the first time he had suspected that to hint that noblemen wore shirts was a grave offence, to be prosecuted in the High Court of Parliament by an Attorney-General. Had the author said that the Lord of the Bedchamber had no shirt, or that it stuck through his pantaloons, there might have been good ground of complaint. Such was Mr. Howe's method of defending himself before the potent, grave and reverend seigniors of Nova Scotia. We are insensibly reminded of Shakspeare's aphorism that

"Oftentimes, excusing of a fault
Doth make the fault the worse by the excuse."

This, indeed, will apply to the general tone of Mr. Howe's reply, which was very long and exhaustive, without being overpoweringly convincing. It must be confessed that in such banter as this the critical eye discerns more of rude horseplay than of serious statesmanship. Allowance, however, must be made for the time and occasion when it was indulged in. Mr. Howe was smarting under a sense of injustice, and he was taunted by his well-bred opponents, for whom there was much less excuse, in language as rude and gross as ever fell from his own lips. Nothing came of the discussion before the committee. The Lieutenant-Governor being unable to fill up the vacant seats in the Cabinet, Mr. Johnston struggled on with much difficulty. Public feeling ran very high. Mr. Howe continued to worry the Government both in and out of the House, and continued to stir up a general distrust of their policy. In July, 1844, the Provincial Secretary addressed a circular to Messrs. Uniacke, McNab, Huntington, Brennan and Smith, inviting them to accept seats in the Council, and informing them that Lord Falkland found it impossible to include Mr. Howe in the proposed arrangement. The invitation was not accepted, and a long and fierce debate followed, in the course of which Mr. Howe delivered two very able speeches. At the close of the session he moved his family into the interior, where they spent two years upon the head waters of the Musquodoboit. This removal was due to motives of economy. Mr. Howe possessed the power to make money, but very little power to keep what he had made. He was openhanded and lavish in his expenditure, and no impecunious friend ever applied to him in vain, either for money or money's worth. Being ever ready to confer benefits upon others, and being imprudent both in his style of living and in his general expenditure, he was frequently reduced to serious pecuniary straits. He did not scruple to contract debts, [Pg 124]and was often unable to meet his obligations. At the time of his removal to the head waters of the Musquodoboit he was, to use his own expressive but inelegant phraseology, "strapped." He was not in the least discouraged, however, by the state of his affairs. Referring to his two years' sojourn in the country at this time, he says: "They were two of the happiest years of my life. I had been, for a long time, overworking my brains and underworking my body. Here I worked my body and rested my brains. We rose at daylight, breakfasted at seven, dined at twelve, took tea at six, and then assembled in the library, where we read four or five hours almost every evening. I learned to plough, to mow, to reap, to cradle. I knew how to chop and pitch hay before. Constant exercise in the open air made me as hard as iron. My head was clear and my spirits buoyant. My girls learned to do everything that the daughters of our peasants learn, and got a knowledge of books which, amidst the endless frivolities and gossipping of city life, they never could have acquired. My boys got an insight into what goes on in the interior of their own country, which should be of service to them all their lives. I read the Edinburgh Review from the commencement, and all the poets over again; wrote a good deal, and yet spent the best part of every fine day in the fields or in the woods. My children were all around me, and in health; and, although I had cares enough, as God knows, I shall never, perhaps, be so happy again."

In the month of August, 1846, Mr. Howe had the pleasure of seeing the last of Lord Falkland as Lieutenant-Governor of Nova Scotia. The position of this somewhile Lord of the Bedchamber had long been a most unenviable one, and the Home Ministry recognized the impropriety of continuing him in an office where he would reflect no credit either on himself or them. He was recalled, and was soon afterwards appointed to the Government of Bombay. He was succeeded in Nova Scotia by Sir John Harvey, who had been Lieutenant-Governor respectively of Prince Edward Island, New Brunswick, and Newfoundland. During the following autumn an abortive attempt was made by the Government to form a Coalition Ministry, in which a portfolio was to be offered to Mr. Howe. The Opposition knew that their day of triumph was not far distant, and preferred a short delay to a coalition with men who were daily losing ground in public estimation. The day of triumph came early in 1848. On the 26th of January in that year a vote of want of confidence in the Ministry was passed by a majority of seven. Next day the Executive Council resigned, and Mr. Uniacke was applied to form a Government. This he succeeded in accomplishing, and on the 2nd of February the names of the members were announced. Among them was that of Mr. Howe, who became Provincial Secretary. Upon returning to his constituents in the county of Halifax for reëlection he was returned by a majority of 832 votes.

Responsible Government being now established, the new Government devoted itself to the development of the resources of the Province. The railway era set in, and the building of a road from Halifax to Quebec was adopted by the Government as part of their policy, but the scheme fell through for the time, owing to the refusal of the Imperial Government to contribute towards the cost of carrying it out. The railway from Halifax to Windsor—an enterprise which Mr. Howe had for years had at heart—was undertaken wholly as a Provincial work. In 1850 Mr. Howe was sent to England, chiefly on railway matters, distinguishing himself there by several speeches, the most noteworthy of which was that delivered at Southampton, and already quoted from [Pg 125]in the opening paragraph of this sketch. In the following year, accompanied by Mr. Chandler, in the interest of New Brunswick, he paid another visit to Canada, and delivered speeches in Toronto, Montreal, Quebec, and elsewhere, in which he dwelt strongly upon the necessity of the several Provinces uniting in one Government and constructing the Intercolonial Railway.

Among all his multifarious pursuits, Mr. Howe's turn for poetry never wholly deserted him. He loved his native Province with a fervour and devotion such as the mere politician never knows, and some of his best poetical effusions were poured out in her honour. His compositions were always more noticeable for their genuine poetic inspiration than for elegance of diction. Many of them found an echo in the hearts of his countrymen, and are still sung by the rustic fireside on long winter evenings. One of the best known is his "Song for the Centenary," published in June, 1849, and written for the centennial celebration of the settlement of Halifax by Governor Cornwallis a century before. It was forthwith set to appropriate music, and has ever since been honoured as the natal song of Nova Scotia.

During the session of 1850 Mr. Howe introduced and successfully carried through the House a Bill entitled "An Act to authorize Her Majesty's subjects to plead and reason for themselves or others in all Her Majesty's Courts within this Province." It was in effect a Bill enabling any layman to act as counsel at the Bar, whether he had ever studied law or not. The introduction of such a measure caused no little excitement among the lawyers in the House, and a good deal of amusement to the country at large. Various opinions were held at the time as to its origin. Some believed that Mr. Howe had been annoyed by the intrigues, jealousies, or unsteady support of some of the professional adherents of the Government, and wished to teach them a lesson and reduce them to discipline; while others thought that the Bill was brought in from a sincere conviction of its utility. Whatever the motive may have been, the measure was introduced, advocated, and fought through, with becoming gravity, and became the law of the land, though it was subsequently repealed. We have referred to it for the express purpose of making some random quotations from Mr. Howe's remarks in its defence—remarks in which horseplay and sound argument are curiously intermingled, and which are as characteristic of the man as any utterances that ever fell from his lips. They will give the reader a better idea of one phase of Mr. Howe's oratory than the most laboured descriptive analysis could possibly afford. It was urged by professional members in the House that no man is fit to conduct a forensic argument until he has undergone a long and severe mental discipline, and until he has spent a more or less prolonged term in a lawyer's office. To this argument Mr. Howe replied: "I could point to six or seven barristers, who have gone through this ordeal, and have been admitted to the Bar of Nova Scotia, who are hardly a grade above the idiot, or fit to herd geese upon a common.... It will be admitted that Demosthenes was a pretty good lawyer, and one of the best orators known in the annals of history. At the age of seventeen, he walked into the courts of his country, and won back his inheritance from the guardians who were mismanaging his estate. But Demosthenes was never cooped up in an attorney's office for five years, poring over old musty volumes of almost forgotten lore.... There was Cicero. Nobody will deny that he was nearly as great a lawyer and orator as any we have in Nova Scotia.... But it is said, a layman can never study and comprehend the laws. Why not? What is there so abstruse [Pg 126]and difficult in our common and statute law? Take the laws of nations, which have to form the basis of all diplomacy. These are handed over generally to a body of men who are not lawyers, but yet who arrange and manage treaties, with all their mighty interests, and infinity of detail, to the satisfaction of their respective nations. So, take commercial law. Merchants master but cannot practise it. I need not go out of this street to find a man who understands commercial law as well as any lawyer in the country, and whose opinion I would rather take; but I cannot ask his opinion; he cannot go into our courts and plead a case. Now take, again, the divine law. Any blockhead may go into a pulpit, shatter the nerves of a whole congregation, discourse of things temporal and things eternal, and dispose not of our estates, but of our souls; and yet the most accomplished statesman, who is not a lawyer, cannot go into one of Her Majesty's courts and sue for a ten-pound note, or seek restitution of a poor widow's rights. I sustain this Bill then because I believe all monopolies are bad. Suppose we were to secure in this city to-morrow a monopoly of commercial business, that we should take a hundred men and confide to them the whole foreign commerce of the country, and let no others send ships to sea. Enterprise would be cramped, trade would languish, our mercantile character would be lowered, and the community much less prosperous and contented. Take the sciences of chemistry, astronomy, are they not as abstruse, as perplexing, as law? Like law, they are progressive sciences. Why have they improved so much and law so little? How is it that we can measure Jupiter, but cannot frame a reliable plea or indictment? Take Mrs. Somerville's mechanism of the heavens. Put it into the hands of the lawyers of Nova Scotia, and I doubt if five of them will understand it.... The honourable member from Sydney told me that I went into court once and made a pretty long speech.6 And so I did. I got then a pretty good idea of how things are done. The lawyers do not take three meals a day of law with perfect gusto. They study a little when young, and after that they jostle about in the profession and take their chance. Now and then, there is a fellow who studies very deeply, and he drops off before his time. Our present venerable Chief Justice stepped out of the ranks of the army, and I believe that all his books might have been carried on a wheelbarrow when he was elevated to the Bench; he devoted but a short time to the study of law, and a capital judge he has made ever since. It was my fortune to study the law of libel once, and in three weeks I think I read more of it than any lawyer ever did in Nova Scotia. The Speaker laughs; but, sir, the proof of the pudding is in the eating of it. And while my law was accepted as sound, the law of the Bar, and of the judges too, was voted absurd by the jury. I ask any man to go into our courts of law, and ask himself if he could not take from a dozen different walks of life those who would shed more honour and intelligence than many of those who sit behind the Bar?... I was amused with an argument of the honourable member for Cumberland. He says, the Bill ought to go farther and admit the ladies into the courts of justice. Why not? They would make eloquent pleaders. Does he remember that celebrated scene where two females rushed into court with a case, reported in an imperishable volume—a cause, where a layman was the judge, and ladies the only orators? With their maternal feelings excited, the mothers rushed into court without being accompanied by two lawyers who had studied for five years, and both claimed the child! King Solomon, [Pg 127]who was, perhaps, nearly as wise as the judges in Nova Scotia, repelled them by no forms, asked for the aid of no counsel learned in the law. But he had studied the laws of nature, and sounded the depths of the human heart. With a glance he detected the rightful owner, and gave a judgment which has never been reversed."

A minute record of Mr. Howe's proceedings during the next few years would involve the writing of hundreds of pages. This was probably the busiest interval of a life that was never idle. In July, 1851, he retired from the representation of the metropolitan county of Halifax, finding the burden of such representation, in conjunction with his position as a member of the Government, too heavy for his shoulders. It was necessary that he should find a constituency less exacting, and having fewer and less important local interests requiring attention. He offered himself as a candidate for the county of Cumberland, and was returned. A year or two later he was again sent to England, and coöperated with Mr. Hincks and Mr. Chandler in carrying out important railway negotiations. In 1854, having been appointed Chairman of the Railway Board, he resigned the office of Provincial Secretary, and a reconstruction of the Administration followed. During the session of 1855 he vehemently opposed a measure introduced by the Hon. J. W. Johnston for the prohibition of the importation, manufacture and sale of intoxicating liquors. His speech on the second reading of the Bill was singularly illogical, but it was humorous and eloquent, and the measure was defeated. In 1855 there was a general election. The heaviest contest of the campaign took place in Mr. Howe's constituency in Cumberland. Mr. Howe was opposed by a young man who then for the first time offered himself as a candidate for Parliamentary honours, and who subsequently won a wide reputation—the present Sir Charles Tupper. Sir Charles was then a medicial practitioner at Amherst, and was both then and for many years afterwards known as "Doctor" Tupper. The contest was one of almost unexampled keenness, and resulted in the defeat of both Mr. Howe and his coadjutor in the representation of Cumberland. This was a serious blow to the Government, which had already begun to exhibit signs of weakness. Next year, on the promotion to the Bench of Mr. Wilkins, the member for Windsor, Mr. Howe was returned for that constituency by acclamation. The Government, however, had only a small working majority, and the position was not improved by the publication of a letter from Mr. Howe's pen which appeared in the Halifax Chronicle towards the close of the following December, and which gave great offence to the Roman Catholics. Next March the Government was defeated, and Mr. Howe resigned his position as Chairman of the Railway Board. A Conservative Government succeeded, under the leadership of Mr. Johnston, in which Dr. Tupper became Provincial Secretary. It remained in power until 1860, when it was once more displaced by a Liberal Government under Mr. Young, in which Mr. Howe succeeded to Dr. Tupper's portfolio. Upon Mr. Young's elevation to the Bench during the same year Mr. Howe became Premier, and so continued until 1863, when the Liberal Government was once more defeated. Twice during his tenure of office as Premier he visited England on railway matters. Soon after the resignation of his Government in 1863 he was appointed Imperial Fishery Commissioner, and was thus debarred from taking a very active part in the Union movement until the abrogation of the Reciprocity Treaty in 1866 put an end to his official duties. There had been a steady and persistent hostility between him and Dr. Tupper, who had been a rising politician ever since his first entry into public life in 1855. It is not impossible that Mr. Howe's opposition to Dr. Tupper [Pg 128]may have prompted the former to take the stand he did on the question of Confederation. To that project he was utterly opposed, and the dogged resistance he displayed in opposing it was truly formidable. When the result of the Quebec Conference of 1864 was published to the world, the Maritime Provinces, alone among the colonies of British America, expressed opposition to Confederation. For a few days there was much speculation as to which side of the controversy Mr. Howe would espouse. "At first," says Principal Grant, "it was taken for granted that he who had spoken so many eloquent words, all pointing to the magnificent future of British America, all tending to inspire its youth with love of country as something far higher than mere Provincialism, would now be among the advocates of Confederation, and the wise and loving critic of the scheme to be submitted to the Legislatures. But by-and-by it was rumoured that he was talking and writing against it, and before long he came forth as the crowned head of the Opposition."7 He "stumped" the Province from end to end, delivering telling speeches wherever he went, and with such success, that of the whole number of Nova Scotia candidates favourable to Confederation, the only one returned to Parliament was Dr. Tupper himself.

The author above quoted from is of opinion that if Mr. Howe had gone to Charlottetown and Quebec, as one of the delegates, he would have thrown himself heartily into the project, and made his mark on the proposed constitution. He was ready to go, it appears, but his duties as Fishery Commissioner took him away for two months just at the critical moment. The Admiral declared that he could not give him a vessel at any other time, and the other delegates did not dream that his presence was indispensable. The next thing he heard was that the Quebec scheme had been completed to the minutest detail and published to the world. "The egg had been hatched, not by the hen that laid it, but by some fancy steam process. The ship had been launched without the presence of the designer." From that moment he resolved to oppose Confederation, and never in the whole course of his active life did he fight with more vigour and resolution. He made two more journeys to England, but failed wholly in obtaining encouragement from the Imperial Government. During his stay in London he wrote a pamphlet entitled "Confederation considered in relation to the interests of the Empire," in which the opinions expressed were widely at variance with the views formerly advocated by the author. The arguments employed were evidently the result of a great strain on the writer's conscience, and they lacked logical coherence. Dr. Tupper, who, with several other gentlemen, had gone to England to advocate the scheme to which Mr. Howe was so much opposed, wrote a reply to this pamphlet, in which the many and serious inconsistencies were clearly pointed out, and this in a calm and statesmanlike spirit. So that, as Principal Grant says, in the article already quoted from, "he had to fight Howe as well as Tupper." The contest was unequal, and Mr. Howe had to yield. At the first general election after Confederation he was returned to the Commons for the county of Hants. He then set himself to work to get the best terms he could for his Province; and having obtained a readjustment of the terms agreed upon at the London conference, he accepted the situation, and subsequently, on the 19th of January, 1869, took office in the Dominion Government as President of the Council. Upon presenting himself to his constituents for reëlection he was returned by acclamation. He retained his position as President of the Council exactly ten months, when (on the 19th of November) he was appointed

[Pg 129]Secretary of State for the Provinces and Superintendent-General of Indian Affairs. His visit to Manitoba, and his unfortunate utterances while there, took place during his tenure of office as President of the Council.

Several years before this time Mr. Howe's health had begun to fail. He was subject to repeated attacks of bronchitis; and his life of turmoil and excitement had seriously unhinged his nervous system. It is fairly conjecturable, however, that his infirm health was due as much to disappointment, and the consciousness of not having been true to himself, as to any bodily ailment. He was no longer universally popular among Nova Scotians, and he felt this very keenly. During the progress of the session of 1872 he was compelled to leave his work and take a trip southward, with a view to regaining his strength. He spoke but little during that session and the following one; and when he did speak it was evident that his physical powers had been very much weakened. In May, 1873, he was appointed to the Lieutenant-Governorship of Nova Scotia, and it was hoped that rest would do much for his failing powers. For a short time previous to his appointment he had been suffering from a complication of disorders—among others from an affection of the liver. On the day when he was sworn into office he took up his residence at Government House, Halifax, where he was destined to spend the short span of life that yet remained to him. He had not been many hours in residence when an old supporter, and a former friend of his father's, called to pay his respects. "Well, Joseph," said Mr. Howe's interlocutor, "what would your old father have thought of this?" "Well," was the answer, "it would have pleased the old man. I have had a long fight for it, and have stormed the castle at last. But now that I have it, what does it all amount to? I shall be here but a few days; and instead of playing Governor, I feel like saying with Wolsey, to the Abbot of Leicester—

'An old man, broken with the storms of State, Is come to lay his weary bones among ye; Give him a little earth for charity.'"

The quotation was prophetic; though for several weeks afterwards his health seemed to be improving, his only inconvenience arising from a severe pain in the chest, which occasionally troubled him. The weather was fine, and tempted him to take frequent carriage drives. On Thursday, the 29th of May, he took a longer drive than usual, going seven miles eastward of the city, to a well-known wayside inn. When he returned he was a little fatigued, but otherwise appeared well. The pain in the chest troubled him, and he did not go out. On Friday and Saturday the pain continued. He got little rest and suffered much; yet he had often before had such attacks, and his friends did not think him in danger. The opinion of eminent physicians, and his apparent enjoyment of the rest and recreation his new position afforded him, encouraged the hopes entertained by his friends of an improvement in his condition. On Saturday, the 31st, he appeared nervous, and would not allow his wife or his son William, his private Secretary, to be absent from his side for a moment. On Saturday night he remained with them in his study, and being unable to lie down he paced the room, evidently suffering great pain. All this, however, was a not uncommon state of affairs, and excited no alarm. About half-past four o'clock on the morning of Sunday, the 1st of June, Mrs. Howe induced him to rise from the chair in which he had been sitting for a little while, and to try to sleep in his bed. He passed out of the study and entered his room. Before he reached the bedside he staggered, and would have fallen to the floor, but for his son, who caught him in his arms. Even yet his life was not thought to be in danger. His wife and son [Pg 130]remained by his side, and he conversed with them a little. He complained of intense pain. After a few minutes his voice became weaker. Ten minutes after he entered the room he was dead. He was quite conscious to the last, and from the few words he spoke before he died, it seemed that he believed the end was at hand.

The announcement of his death caused a profound feeling in the city, and it was referred to in most of the churches. The shipping in port, the public and many private buildings displayed flags at half-mast. Everything indicated a consciousness on the part of the people of the city that a great man had passed away. Indications of a still gentler nature were not wanting. On the morning following the Lieutenant-Governor's death, a Halifax merchant who had been a warm friend of the deceased was entering his place of business, when he saw a farmer or drover, one well known for "homespun without, and a warm heart within," sitting on a box outside near the door, his head leaning on his hand, his foot monotonously swinging to and fro, looking as if he had sat there for hours, and had no intention of getting up in a hurry. "Well, Stephen, what's the matter?" "Oh, nauthin'," was the dull response. "Is it Howe?" was the next question, and in a softer tone. The sound of the name unsealed the fountain. "Yes, it's Howe." The words came with a gulp, and then followed tears, dropping on the pavement large and fast. He did not weep alone. And in many a hamlet, in many a fishing village, in many a nook and corner of Nova Scotia, as the news went over the land, Joseph Howe had the same tribute of tears.8

Mr. Howe was a many-sided man, and it is not easy to sum up his character in few words. Perhaps the most conspicuous things about him were his genuine earnestness, his ardent love for Nova Scotia, and his largeness of heart. That he was sometimes earnest on the wrong side may be admitted; but he was no mere politician, and on more than one occasion in his public life he demonstrated himself to be the possessor of a high measure of statesmanship. Towards Responsible Government he bears the same relation in the history of Nova Scotia that Robert Baldwin bears in that of Upper Canada. His patriotism, and more especially his devotion to his own Province, are proved by every important act alike of his public and private life. As a natural orator it is no exaggeration to say that he has never had his peer among the public speakers of this Dominion. Those who remember his famous speech before the International Commercial Convention at Detroit, in 1865, are still accustomed to speak of it as one of the most wonderful orations ever called forth by such an occasion. Whatever he felt, he felt intensely, and whatever he did, he did with all his might. His language, when he was fairly in earnest, literally carried everything before it. In nothing was his greatness more signally displayed than in his power of bending others to his own will. "Men followed him against their own interests, against their own Church, against their own prejudices and convictions. Episcopalians fought by his side against the Church of England; Baptists fought with him against the demands of the denomination; Roman Catholics stood by him when he assailed the pretensions of their Church." One who could exercise such magnetism as this, and who never seriously abused his power, is entitled to a verdict in his favour from posterity; and such a verdict, in so far as we are capable of pronouncing it, is hereby rendered on behalf of the Honourable Joseph Howe.

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Mr. Baby is descended from one of the oldest French families on this continent. Its first Canadian representative was Jacques Baby de Rainville, an officer in the celebrated regiment of Carignan-Sallières, who first settled in what is now the Province of Quebec more than two hundred years ago. Various descendants of the Seigneur de Rainville have figured conspicuously in our history, and some of them have rendered distinguished services to the State. At the present day the family name is creditably represented in every Province of the Dominion. The paternal grandfather of the subject of this sketch was the Hon. Francois Baby, an Executive and Legislative Councillor and Adjutant-General for the Province of Quebec. His father, the late Mr. Joseph Baby, was also a well-known Member of Parliament, who early in life married Miss Caroline Guy, a daughter of the late Hon. Louis Guy, King's Notary, and a Legislative Councillor for the old Province of Quebec. The present representative is one of the fruits of that marriage, and was born in the city of Montreal, on the 26th of August, 1834. After some time spent at St. Sulpice College, Montreal, where he diligently prosecuted his studies, Mr. Baby was sent to the College of Joliette, to finish his education. Here he soon made a name for himself as a student of good attainments, and succeeded in carrying off several of the higher prizes in the various departments of learning. At the conclusion of his college career, he chose the profession which peculiarly suited the bent of his mind, and set himself vigorously to the study of the law. When twenty-three years of age he was called to the Bar of Lower Canada. In 1873 he was created a Queen's Counsel, an honour which attested the quality of his legal acquirements. For several years he was a clerk in the Civil Service of Canada, a position which provided him with the means of gathering a vast amount of information which has proved of incalculable value to him in later life. He has frequently been elected Mayor of the town of Joliette, is one of the founders of the Historical Society of Montreal, an associate of the Montreal Antiquarian and Numismatic Society, and an honorary member of L'Institut Canadien de Quebec. In July, 1873, he married Marie Hélène Adelaide Berthelet, daughter of the late Dr. Berthelet. His political career dates from 1867, when, at the general election of that year, he was a candidate for the House of Commons for Joliette county. He was defeated on that occasion, however, but at the general elections of 1872, he was returned to Parliament by acclamation for Joliette. He seconded the reply to the address at the second session of Parliament on the 27th October, 1873—that famous short session which opened on the 23rd of October and rose from its labours on the [Pg 132]7th of November. The address was rejected in the Lower House, but adopted as it stood in the Senate. The Macdonald administration resigned without allowing the question at issue to come to a vote. Mr. Mackenzie formed a new Government, and an appeal was made to the people in 1874. Mr. Baby was reëlected by his constituency, but was unseated on petition on the 28th of October. On the 10th of December he was again returned, and also at the last general election of the 17th of September, 1878. The Mackenzie Government on that occasion experienced defeat, and on the new Administration of Sir John A. Macdonald being formed, Mr. Baby was invited to take a portfolio. He complied with the request, and on the 26th of October he was sworn of the Canadian Privy Council, and appointed Minister of Inland Revenue. On going back to his county for reëlection, in November, he was returned without opposition. In the same month he was entertained at a public banquet by the leading citizens of Joliette, on the occasion of his elevation to a seat in the Executive. He is a ready and effective debater, and an efficient departmental officer.

John William Dawson
John William Dawson

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We have other names in Canada of more or less eminence in the scientific world, but Principal Dawson is one of the very few living Canadian scientists who can justly claim a place in the front rank. As a naturalist, and more especially as a geologist, his reputation has long been established on two continents, and at the present day is as wide as civilization itself. The works embodying the results of his patient labours are in the hands of every scholar who pretends to keep abreast of the scientific thought of his time. They have done much to stimulate and sustain original inquiry, and have opened up new fields of thought in quarters which once were barren. They have made the author's name known to and respected by persons who know nothing of Canada beyond the fact that it is the abode of Professor Dawson. It is noteworthy, too, that Professor Dawson is one of the few scientific men of universally acknowledged eminence who find no necessary antagonism between the teachings of science and the teachings of the Bible. Since the death of Professor Agassiz, he is one of the most formidable opponents of the doctrine of evolution, as propounded by Darwin and Herbert Spencer. The great facts of geology, according to Professor Dawson, furnish no argument for the rejection by the scientific world of the Mosaic account of the Creation. The conflict between religion and science, of which we have heard so much during the last few years, is, in the Professor's opinion, rather a conflict between opposing schools of thought, and is no necessary or legitimate result of conscientious scientific inquiry. The Bible, he tells us, has nothing to dread from the revelations of geology, but much to hope, in the way of elucidation of its meaning, and confirmation of its truth. That a scholar whose training has been exceptionally thorough and comprehensive, and whose natural powers of mind are confessedly of a very high order; whose original researches in his own particular department have been second to those of no investigator of his time; and whose purpose has always been to arrive at the truth: these facts afford sufficient proof that the doctrine of evolution is not, as many of its votaries claim for it, a demonstrable proposition. The Professor's arguments on this important question were first given to the world many years ago. They have been sharply criticised, but it may at least be said that they have not yet been demolished. They have since been repeatedly reiterated and enlarged upon, and have lost none of their force by repetition. It is a good sign when a man's mind continues to grow after he has passed middle life, and Professor Dawson's most recent works furnish abundant evidence that their author's mind has never been more keenly progressive than now.

His life has been one of remarkable diligence and mental activity. He is of [Pg 134]Scottish origin. His father, the late Mr. James Dawson, was a younger son of a Scottish farmer in comfortable circumstances, who emigrated to Nova Scotia during the early years of the present century, and embarked in business at the seaport town of Pictou. Here the subject of this sketch was born on the 13th of October, 1820. His father was a man of cultured mind, with a taste for scientific pursuits, and to this predilection the Professor is doubtless in some measure indebted for the direction given to his own studies. The latter received his primary education at the Grammar School and College of his native town. The latter institution enjoyed a deservedly high reputation throughout the Maritime Provinces, and was then under the direction of the late Principal McCulloch. The boy was father to the man, and was an indefatigable student of natural history. When he was only twelve years of age he began to make a collection of fossil plants of the coal period. From the College at Pictou he proceeded to the University of Edinburgh, where he devoted special attention to natural history and practical chemistry. After a winter's study he returned to his native Province, and devoted himself with ardour to geological research. He was the companion of Sir Charles Lyell during that eminent man's tour in Nova Scotia, in 1842, and followed up his researches by studies of the Carboniferous rocks of Nova Scotia, on which he contributed two important papers to the Geological Society of London. In the autumn of 1846 he returned to Edinburgh, and remained there until he had completed his University course. On returning he pursued his geological investigations with renewed energy. The results of these investigations were from time to time published in scientific periodicals, and attention soon began to be directed towards the author. He was requested by the authorities of Dalhousie College, Halifax, to deliver a course of lectures on natural history in the Nova Scotian capital. His compliance was the means of establishing his reputation as a lecturer, and from that time forward he has been pretty constantly before the public in that capacity. Of his platform style, it has been said that "Language, with him, seems to wait upon thought; and no matter whether the occasion be trivial or important, the right word always appears to be ready to fill the right place."

In 1850 he was appointed by the Government of Nova Scotia to the then newly-created office of Superintendent of Education for that Province, an office which he held for over three years, during which he rendered valuable service to the Province at a time of special interest in the history of its schools and educational institutions. He also took an active part in the establishment of a Normal School in Nova Scotia, and in the regulation of the affairs of the University of New Brunswick, as a member of the commission appointed by Sir Edmund Head. In connection with these educational labours he published several elaborate Reports on the Schools of Nova Scotia, and a work on Agricultural Education entitled "Scientific Contributions toward the improvement of Agriculture," which went through two editions, and was of much practical utility. His special work in connection with the University and the Normal School took up much of the time which would otherwise have been devoted to his favourite pursuits.

In 1855 he was called to the position of Principal and Professor of Natural History in McGill College and University, which he has ever since retained. At the time of his appointment the affairs of the University were in a state of much confusion. Its Medical Faculty was the only one which could be said to be in a flourishing condition. The Faculties of Arts and of Law were in their infancy. There were, [Pg 135]however, a number of enterprising and influential men in Montreal, who, by their efforts and their wealth, nobly aided in raising the University to a position of assured usefulness. It has prospered under his management amazingly, and has long since outgrown the effect of the depressing influences under which it laboured at the time of his appointment. He from the first laboured to secure in the University that recognition of Science as an element of liberal culture which its own essential character and the needs of modern life demand. "His lucid and interesting lectures," says a contemporary writer, "as well as his personal popularity, have won for Natural History a place and an importance in McGill not usually accorded to it in University culture." A School of Civil Engineering was established in 1858, which, after a struggling existence of five years, succumbed to unfriendly legislation. This school was resuscitated and placed on a more comprehensive basis in 1871 as the Department of Practical and Applied Science. In this portion of his work Principal Dawson has taken deep interest, and it must be a matter of great satisfaction to him to see that its increased efficiency attracts year by year an increasing number of students, and that its success is now fully assured. Those who are most intimately acquainted with the history of the University during the past twenty-five years feel most strongly the importance of the wise and arduous labours of Principal Dawson.

At the time of his appointment to the position of Principal of the University, one of the great drawbacks to its success was the want of efficient elementary and superior schools to prepare pupils for matriculation. In co-operation with the Superintendent of Public Instruction for the Province of Quebec, and aided by the influence of Sir Edmund Head, then Governor-General, Dr. Dawson secured the establishment, in 1857, of the McGill Normal School, a training school for Protestant teachers. In addition to his arduous and engrossing duties in the University, he assumed the position of Principal of this institution, and continued for thirteen years to preside over its work, and to lecture to its pupils. Though compelled to withdraw from his position in 1870, he has ever since maintained an active supervision of its affairs as Chairman of the Normal School Committee of the Corporation of the University.

During the last eight years, Dr. Dawson has been a valued member of the Protestant Board of School Commissioners of the city of Montreal. He is also a member of the Protestant Committee of the Council of Public Instruction of the Province of Quebec, and took an active part in devising the measures adopted by that body several years since, with a view to securing an effective inspection of the schools of the Province. He is an M.A. of the University of Edinburgh, and an LL.D. of the University with which he is immediately connected. He is also a Fellow of the Geological Society of London (since 1854), and of the Royal Society (since 1862), and is a member of an exceptionally large number of learned societies, both at home and abroad.

Dr. Dawson is perhaps best known to the general public of this country through his success in the organization and management of educational institutions. His reputation abroad, however, rests mainly on his geological investigations and discoveries, more especially in relation to the Carboniferous and Post-pliocene formations, to fossil plants and the fossils of the Laurentian rocks. On these subjects he is the author of a number of memoirs in the proceedings of various learned societies, in scientific journals, and in official reports. He is also the author of a number of standard works, covering a large field of scientific elucidation, and more especially relating to the [Pg 136]earliest known fossil remains, and to the discovery and nature of the now celebrated Eozoon Canadense.

A review of his more important scientific labours proves how much may be done even in the midst of engrossing educational occupations, by a man of active mind, when his heart is in his work. In 1841 he contributed to the Wernerian Society of Edinburgh his first scientific paper, on the species of field-mice found in Nova Scotia. In 1843 he communicated a paper on the rocks of Eastern Nova Scotia to the Geological Society of London; and this was followed in 1844 by a paper on the newer coal formation. In 1845, besides exploring and reporting on the iron mines of Londonderry, Nova Scotia, he published a paper on the coal formation plants of that Province. During the winter of 1846-'47, while studying in Edinburgh, he contributed to the Royal Society of that city papers on the "Formation of Gypsum," and on the "Boulder Formation," and an article to Jameson's Edinburgh Philosophical Journal, on the "Renewal of Forests destroyed by Fire." From 1847 to 1849 we find him pursuing his geological researches, and giving the results to the world in frequent papers. The most important of these are: "On the Triassic Red Sandstones of Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island;" "On the Colouring Matters of Red Sandstones;" "On Erect Calamites found near Pictou;" and "On the Metamorphic Rocks of Nova Scotia." He also published his "Handbook of the Geography and Natural History of Nova Scotia," and delivered courses of lectures on Natural History and Geology in the Pictou Academy, and in Dalhousie College, Halifax, and reported to the Nova Scotia Government on the coal-fields of Southern Cape Breton.

In 1852, in company with Sir Charles Lyell, he made a reëxamination of the "Joggins" section, and visited the remarkable deposit of Albertite at Hillsborough, New Brunswick. A memoir soon appeared on the former district, giving a full exposition of the structure and mode of formation of a coal-field. The Albert Mine was also made the subject of a paper. In the further study of the "Joggins" section, microscopic examinations were made of coal from all its beds, as well as of coal from other sources, the results being published in papers on the "Structures in Coal," and on the "Mode of Accumulation of Coal." It was during the visit to the "Joggins," just referred to, that the remains of Dendrerpeton Acadianum and Pupa vetusta were found. With the exception of Baphetes planiceps, which Dr. Dawson had discovered in the previous year at Pictou, but had not described, Dendrerpeton Acadianum was the first reptile found in the coal formation of America; and Pupa vetusta was the first known Palaeozoic land snail. These discoveries were followed by the finding and describing of several other reptiles, and of the first carboniferous millipede (Xylobias sigillaria). About this time, also, a second report on the Acadia Iron Mine was prepared, and an elaborate series of assays of coal made for the General Mining Association.

In 1855 he published the first edition of his "Acadian Geology," a complete account, up to that date, of the geology of the Maritime Provinces of British North America. In 1856, though trammelled by the arduous duties incumbent upon the Principal of a University, he still continued his geological work in his native Province, and prepared a description of the Silurian and Devonian rocks. During the same summer he visited Lake Superior, and wrote a paper and report on the copper-regions of Maimanse and Georgian Bay, in which he discussed the geological relations of the then little known copper-bearing rocks of the North Shore of Lake Superior, and the origin of the deposits of native copper. In the two [Pg 137]following years he made a number of contributions to the Canadian Naturalist and the Journal of the Geological Society, and commenced the study of the Post-pliocene deposits of Canada. In 1859 his "Archaia, or Studies of Creation in Genesis," appeared, a work showing not only a thorough knowledge of Natural History, but also considerable familiarity with the Hebrew language and with Biblical Literature. In 1860 he issued a supplementary chapter to his "Acadian Geology." He also continued his work in fossil botany and in the Post-pliocene, publishing several papers on these subjects, as well as desultory researches on such subjects as the "Flora of Mount Washington," "Indian Antiquities at Montreal," "Marine Animals of the St. Lawrence," "Earthquakes in Canada," "Classification of Animals," etc.

In 1863 he issued his "Air-Breathers of the Coal Period," a complete account of the fossil reptiles and other land animals of the coal of Nova Scotia. This publication was followed, in 1864, by a "Hand-book of Scientific Agriculture." It was in 1864, also, that Dr. Dawson made what may be considered as one of the most important of his scientific discoveries—that of Eozoon Canadense. This fossil had already been noticed by Sir William Logan, but Dr. Dawson, to whom Sir William submitted his specimens, was the first to recognize its Foraminiferal affinities, and to describe its structure. Previous to this time the rocks of the Laurentian age were looked upon as devoid of animal remains, and called "Azoic." Dr. Dawson now substituted the term "Eozoic." In 1865, at the meeting of the British Association at Birmingham, he gave illustrations of his researches on the "Succession of Palaeozoic Floras," the "Post-pliocene of Canada," and the "Structure of Eozoon."

In 1868 appeared the second edition of "Acadian Geology," enlarged to nearly 700 octavo pages, with a great number of illustrations from the author's drawings. This still remains the standard work on the geology of the Maritime Provinces, while it also treats of many of the more difficult problems of geology generally.

While in England, in 1870, Dr. Dawson lectured at the Royal Institution. He also read a paper on the "Affinities of Coal Plants" before the Geological Society, and one on the "Devonian Flora" before the Royal Society. The same year his "Handbook of Canadian Zoology" appeared, being followed in 1871 by a "Report on the Silurian and Devonian Flora of Canada," and a "Report on the Geological Structure of Prince Edward Island." His studies of the Devonian plants were begun as early as 1858, and Gaspé, St. John's, and Perry in Maine, were twice visited in order to collect material to aid in their prosecution.

His "Notes on the Post-pliocene of Canada" were published in 1873. From them we learn that the number of known species of Post-pliocene fossils had been raised, principally by his labours, from about thirty to over two hundred. We also find that Dr. Dawson is still what he has always been, a staunch opponent of the theory of general land glaciation. "The Story of the Earth and Man," issued in 1873, was a republication of papers published in the Leisure Hour in 1871 and 1872. It gives a popular view of the whole of the Geological ages, presented in a series of word-pictures, and with discussions of the theories as to the origin of mountains, the introduction and succession of life, the glacial period, and other controverted topics. A report on the "Fossil Flora of the Lower Carboniferous Coal Measures of Canada," and communications to the Geological Society of London, on the probable Permian age of beds overlying the coal-measures of Nova Scotia, and also occurring in Prince Edward Island; on recent facts as to the mode of occurrence of [Pg 138]Eozoon in the Laurentian rocks, and on the Phosphates in the Laurentian rocks, are still more recent labours. A course of six lectures delivered in New York in the winter of 1874-'75 has been largely circulated both in America and England, under the title "Science and the Bible;" and in 1875 there also appeared in London and New York, a popular illustrated résumé of the facts relating to Eozoon and other ancient fossils, entitled "The Dawn of Life." At the Detroit meeting of the American Association, Prof. Dawson, as Vice-President of Section B, delivered an address in which he vigorously combated the doctrine of evolution as held by its more extreme supporters.

In 1877 appeared his "Origin of the World," which may be regarded as a modernized and in great part re-written edition of his former work "Archaia." A still more recent work, "Fossil Men," applies the history, manners and customs of the aborigines of America in illustration of the questions agitated respecting prehistoric man in Europe; and a popular work, intended to give a clear view of the actual succession of life as known to geologists, is to appear in London in the present year with the title "The Chain of Life."

Dr. Dawson married on the 19th of March, 1847, Miss Margaret A. Y. Mercer, of Edinburgh. They have five surviving children, the eldest of whom, Dr. George M. Dawson, has followed up his father's pursuits. He graduated as Associate of the Royal School of Mines, London, in 1872, taking the highest distinction, as Edward Forbes Medallist, and after spending two years as geologist of the Boundary Commission, and preparing an elaborate Report on the Geology of the 49th Parallel, was appointed on the geological survey of Canada. Of this he is now one of the Assistant Directors, with special charge of the survey of British Columbia, on the geology and resources of which he has issued several reports, besides occasional papers in the Journal of the Geological Society and the Canadian Naturalist. He is a Fellow of the Geological Society, and has received the Degree of Doctor of Science from the University of Princeton. Professor Dawson's second son, Mr. W. B. Dawson, after graduating in honours at McGill, entered the celebrated Ecole des Parts et Chaumées in Paris, and after studying for three years, had the honour of graduating at the head of his class. He is now in practice as a civil engineer.

Adam Crooks
Adam Crooks

[Pg 139]



The present Minister of Education for Ontario was born at "The Homestead," in the Township of West Flamboro', in the County of Wentworth, on the 11th of December, 1827. His father, the Hon. James Crooks, was a well-known resident of this Province, who, during the greater part of his long and useful life, took a prominent part in public affairs, and enjoyed the highest confidence and respect. A few facts relating to the career of the late Mr. Crooks will form a suitable prologue to a more extended notice of the life of his son. The family is of Scottish origin, and has been connected with various branches of industry in Ayrshire ever since the beginning of the eighteenth century. The late Mr. Crooks was born at Kilmarnock, in 1778, and well remembered the publication, by an obscure printer of that town, of a little book which was destined to make the name of Kilmarnock more widely known than all its other manufactures, from the time of Robert Bruce downwards. This volume made its appearance in 1786, when James Crooks was only eight years old. Its title was "Poems, chiefly in the Scottish Dialect," and its author was a thriftless young fellow named Robert Burns, upon whom the well-conducted folk of that neighbourhood were wont to look with no favourable eyes. Mr. Crooks and his parents emigrated from Scotland to Western Canada in 1794, when James was just emerging from boyhood. He settled at Niagara, and embarked in the fur-trade and such other commercial enterprises as those times afforded. He established a grist mill, and purchased grain from the settlers in the district. Things prospered with him. He became a man of substance, and one of the leading merchants of the Niagara peninsula. He is reported to have despatched the first load of wheat and the first load of flour which ever found their way from Upper Canada to Montreal. Early in the present century he married a daughter of James Cummings, of Chippewa, a U. E. Loyalist, who had emigrated to Canada from Cherry Valley, in the State of New York, shortly before the massacre which has unjustly been attributed to Captain Joseph Brant. Upon the breaking out of the war of 1812 James Crooks promptly responded to his country's call, and took the command of a flank company of Lincoln militia, at the head of which he fought at Queenston Heights and elsewhere along the Niagara frontier. His company formed part of the reinforcement to General Brock which proceeded under General Sheaffe from Niagara to the scene of action on the news of the crossing of the enemy at Queenston. The enemy were completely defeated, and the American Generals, with officers and nine hundred men, surrendered to General Sheaffe, in whose despatch Captain James Crooks was named with other Militia officers as having "led their men into action [Pg 140]with great spirit." Soon after the cessation of hostilities he removed to West Flamboro', where he continued to reside down to the time of his death. He also took his share in the putting down of the rebellion of 1837-8. He was a member of the Legislative Council of Upper Canada and Canada respectively for more than a quarter of a century, and occupied that position at the time of his death. As a politician he was a man of moderate and consistent views, who discussed public measures on their merits, and not from a partisan point of view. During his residence in West Flamboro' he established the first paper mill in this Province, and for many years the supply from this source, small as it must necessarily have been, was found quite equal to the demand. He had retired from business of every kind for some time before his death, which took place at his residence on the 2nd of March, 1860, when he was in the eighty-second year of his age. He left behind him a numerous family, of whom the fourth son, Adam, is the subject of this memoir.

After attending the public schools in the neighbourhood of his home, and afterwards at Hamilton, Adam Crooks, when in his twelfth year, entered as a student at Upper Canada College. He entered the preparatory school, and passed through the usual collegiate course with much credit, gaining the examination prize, and standing first in each form from the first to the seventh. He was highly commended by his tutors, alike for his diligence and for the quickness of his parts. When eighteen years of age he matriculated at King's College, now the University of Toronto, standing first in Classics. The institution was then under the control of the Church of England, and students were compelled to attend chapel and denominational lectures under Dr. Beaven, who was then the Theological Professor. Mr. Crooks had been brought up as a Presbyterian, and a dispensation was granted which relieved him from the necessity of taking part in them. His whole University career was one of exceptional brilliancy. At the second year's examination he won the Wellington scholarship. In 1849 he passed the B.A. examination, taking the gold medal in Classics and the first silver medal in Metaphysics, for which latter branch no gold medal was awarded in those days. His close application to his studies had affected his health, and, although all his examinations had been passed, he did not present himself for, and did not actually receive his bachelor's degree until 1850. When the change effected by Mr. Baldwin's Act came into operation: that is to say, when the University became a Provincial, instead of a sectarian institution: Mr. Crooks, by virtue of his degree of B.C.L., became a member of the convocation, and was elected Pro-Vice-Chancellor. He had studied law concurrently with his course at the University, and he was called to the Bar of Upper Canada during Trinity Term, 1851, before he had completed his twenty-fourth year. He opened an office in Toronto, where his abilities and connexions soon won for him an excellent practice and a prominent position at the Equity Bar. The degree of M.A. was conferred upon him by the University in 1852. On the 4th of December, 1856, he married Emily, youngest daughter of the late General Thomas Evans, C.B., of Montreal, a distinguished officer who fought at Lundy's Lane and elsewhere in this Province during the war of 1812. This lady died at Toronto on the 5th of November, 1868. In 1863 Mr. Crooks obtained the degree of LL.B. His interest in his alma mater has by no means been confined to the period of his actual attendance there as a student. He was one of the founders of the Literary and Scientific Society, and was elected its first President. In 1864 he was elected Vice-Chancellor of the University, [Pg 141]and by means of four successive biennial reëlections continued to occupy that position until his resignation in 1872.

Mr. Crooks's professional career has been as brilliant as might have been anticipated from his successes at college and at the University. At the outset he devoted his attention both to the Common Law and Equity branches of jurisprudence, but he found the latter more congenial as well as more remunerative, and for many years past his practice has been almost wholly confined to Equity. His clients have been chiefly drawn from the wealthier classes and corporations, and he has been engaged in many of the most important suits which have ever come before the Court of Chancery and the Court of Appeal in this Province. In 1863 he was created a Queen's Counsel. During the years 1864 and 1865 he spent much of his time in England in connection with the appeal to the Privy Council there, arising out of the case of The Commercial Bank vs. The Great Western Railway Company. The points involved in this important suit, involving a million of dollars, are too abstruse to possess much interest for the general public. It will be sufficient to say that after long and elaborate arguments Mr. Crooks's contention was fully sustained, and he was successful in obtaining for his clients—the Commercial Bank—security for the full amount claimed.

For some years Mr. Crooks was one of the Examiners to the Law Society of Ontario, and was also Lecturer on Commercial Law and Equity. He had been appointed a Bencher of the Society, and had periodically acted in that capacity for many years, but, owing to certain ill-advised proceedings of the College of Benchers he resigned. The constitution of the College at that time permitted it to elect its own members, without reference to the legal profession generally. It was wont to exercise its rights somewhat capriciously, and not always with due regard to the merits of candidates. Mr. Crooks's resignation was due to the rejection by the College of one of the most eminent professional men in the country, a personal friend of his own, and a gentleman well fitted for the highest honours in the power of the Society to bestow. Several other gentlemen whose position at the Bar was manifestly inferior to that of the rejected candidate were at the same time elected by the College. Mr. Crooks promptly signified his disapprobation of this proceeding by tendering his resignation. As will hereafter be seen, an Act, which is largely due to Mr. Crooks himself, has since been passed, whereby the constitution of the Society has been remodelled, and Benchers are now elected by the profession at large. The first election under the new order of things took place in 1871, when Mr. Crooks and the candidate who had previously been rejected were both elected by a large majority of votes. It may be noted that Mr. Crooks is now also a Bencher ex officio, from his having been Attorney-General of Ontario.

Mr. Crooks belongs to the Liberal side in politics. In the sketch of the life of the Hon. Edward Blake, we have seen that after the establishment of Confederation the Reform Party, by reason of the defection of some of its members, stood in need of reorganization and reinforcement. In the summer of 1867 the leading members of that party made overtures to Mr. Crooks to enter Parliament. In response to these overtures, and after due consideration, he allowed himself to be nominated as the Reform candidate for the West Riding of Toronto, in the Legislative Assembly, in opposition to the late Mr. John Wallis. His candidature on this occasion was unsuccessful, but four years later, in 1871, he again entered the field in the same Riding, and against the same candidate. Public opinion had meanwhile undergone a change, and he was returned by a large majority. Upon the meeting of [Pg 142]the House in December, the result of the debate was the downfall of the Ministry, and upon the formation of the new Cabinet, under Mr. Edward Blake, Mr. Crooks became Attorney-General. Upon returning to his constituents for reëlection he was returned against Mr. Harman, the Opposition candidate. During the whole of the following session he retained the Attorney-Generalship. While holding that position he introduced and successfully carried through a measure which enables a subject to sue and obtain redress against the Crown in the same manner as against a private subject. A brief reference to several of the other important Acts for which he is responsible, will not be out of place here. The Act respecting Liens affords additional security for unpaid wages to mechanics employed in building operations; and a subsequent amendment makes the claims of such mechanics preferential, when the value of the property has been enhanced by the work done. The Act to extend the legal capacity of married women enables the latter to hold their individual property in their own right, and free from the control of their husbands. The Act respecting debts and choses in action makes such assets assignable at Law, as they previously were in Equity. Upon the reconstruction of the Cabinet under Mr. Mowat, in October, 1872, Mr. Crooks accepted the office of Provincial Treasurer, to which was added in 1876 that of Minister of Education. In the session of 1873 he introduced the University Amendment Act, whereby great changes were effected in the constitution of the Senate of the University of Toronto, and a share in the government of the establishment was conferred upon the graduates.

At the general election of 1875 he was an unsuccessful candidate for East Toronto, in opposition to the Hon. Matthew Crooks Cameron. He was soon after elected for South Oxford, the member-elect, Mr. Adam Oliver, having been unseated on petition, and a new writ having been issued. He ceased to be Provincial Treasurer in 1877, surrendering that position to the Hon. S. C. Wood, the present incumbent, and has since found ample employment for his energies as Minister of Education. The duties in connection with that important department have for some years past been steadily increasing. Besides the large interests involved in the administration of the Public and High School system of the Province, the Minister of Education is responsible for all those duties which the Government has to discharge in relation to the Provincial University, comprising the University of Toronto and University College; also Upper Canada College, the various Mechanics' Institutes throughout the Province, the School of Art and Design, and the School of Practical Science. The reforms set on foot during his tenure of office have been many and important, and there is good ground for hoping that the Educational Department of Ontario, under his management, will not only meet the requirements of the Province, but ensure general satisfaction. He has not escaped criticism, but he has nevertheless pursued his course of reform with energy and consistency. His increasing reputation and influence as a public man afford the best reply to those who have disapproved of his policy.

The success achieved by the Canadian educational exhibit at the Centennial Exhibition at Philadelphia in 1876, and at the Paris Exposition of 1878, is something of which we, as Canadians, may justly feel proud, and to Mr. Crooks, as actual head of the Education Department, the result must have been a matter peculiarly gratifying. It is undeniable that to the excellent system inaugurated by him, and to the care, prudence and good management of himself and his coadjutors, the result was largely due. At Paris the Education Department of Ontario [Pg 143]exhibited in five different classes, and received an award in each class. It received, in short, a greater number of awards than Great Britain and all her other colonies put together. In addition to these, decorations of the Order of the Palm Leaf were conferred upon the Honourable Adam Crooks, the Reverend Dr. Ryerson, and Dr. Hodgins, as officers of Public Instruction; and upon Dr. May, as an officer of the Academy. Academic honours were not conferred on representatives of England or her other Colonies, and only two of these decorations were given to the United States. The Department may feel justly proud of the decorations, which are only conferred after a minute examination of those who have rendered real services to science, literature and fine arts, and are worn by the most illustrious members of the Institute of France. In the same manner as the Emperor Napoleon I. replaced the ancient order of St. Louis by the Cross of the Legion of Honour, he also replaced the ancient order of St. Michael by that of the Palm Leaves. The decorations were bestowed upon the above named gentlemen for actual benefit derived by the French from the excellence of the school system of Ontario. The city of Paris is now founding a Museum on the same plan, and in imitation of the Museum of the Education Department of Ontario at Toronto.

To Mr. Crooks belongs the distinction of being the first Canadian who was ever elected a Fellow of the Royal Colonial Institute, and of reading the first paper on a Canadian subject ever read before that body. This paper was read at a meeting of the Society held on the 31st of May, 1869, and was entitled: "On the Characteristics of the Canadian Community." It was regarded by the Society as a most important contribution, and was printed for general circulation.

Mr. Crooks is a member, ex officio, of the Association of Agriculture and Arts, and of the Senate of the University; and also an honorary member of the Ontario Society of Artists.

[Pg 144]



Most writers on the early history of the Western Continent have exercised their ingenuity in finding parallels between the singular mythologies of the aboriginal tribes of America and those of the Egyptians, the Tartars, the Israelites, and other Eastern nations of antiquity. That such parallels are to be found—nay, that they are numerous—is not to be denied; and the many ingenious hypotheses which have been advanced as to a common origin are less fanciful than are some other historical parallels of more modern date. In the customs and traditions of the Aztecs there were many features of resemblance to those of the Children of Israel, and the analogy is sometimes wonderfully exact. The Toltecs also seem to have had certain usages marvellously akin to those of the Egyptians. Some of the rites of the ancient Ghebers were perpetuated in Peru at the time of Pizarro's invasion in the sixteenth century. Looking farther north, we find that the Narragansetts and Mohegans had their legends about a faraway time when their ancestors dwelt in a distant country beyond the salt water, and where the Great Spirit used to commune with their sachems on the top of a high mountain which belched forth fire, and smoke. The Shawnees, with whom this sketch is more immediately concerned, cherished a tradition that their forefathers once dwelt in a foreign land where they were subjected to cruel persecutions at the hands of a more powerful tribe; that their forefathers assembled their people together and marched to the seashore with a view to abandoning the country; that upon their arrival at the shore the water parted, leaving the bed of the ocean dry; that they passed westward along the bottom of the sea until they reached the land known to us by the name of America; and that immediately upon the completion of their journey the waters came together again. Indeed there was scarcely a tribe but had its legendary lore, an examination of which opens a wide and fruitful field of inquiry for those who are enthusiastic about such matters. Such inquiry, however, has its limits, and must perforce be unsatisfactory to those unlearned in mythic lore. The pursuits of the nineteenth century are too busy and practical to admit of general readers paying much attention to mythic history. For most of us, authentic history suffices; and those who carefully peruse the authentic histories of the struggle of the American red men with the pale-faces will be able to understand the feelings of that unhappy clergyman who, when reading the Old Testament account of the battles of the Israelites with their less favoured adversaries, was shocked to find that his sympathies invariably went with the Philistines. The poor Indian, like the Philistine, had to struggle with an invincible foe; with a foe whose invincibility was not entirely due to his [Pg 145]own innate merits. Struggle as valiantly as he would, the fate of the red man, like that of the Philistine, was a foregone conclusion. The fiat had gone forth, and the most that he could do was to expend his valour and his life in a hopeless cause.

The Shawnees, of whom mention has been made, were from time immemorial an active, a warlike and a wandering race. Almost every habitable part of North America has at one time or another been their temporary place of abode. There is authority for believing that they were represented beneath the spreading branches of the celebrated Kensington elm, a few miles above the present site of Philadelphia, when that memorable treaty between William Penn and the Indians was made in the year 1682; that treaty which, as Voltaire said, was the first treaty made between Pagans and Christians which was not ratified by an oath, and which was also the first that was never broken. Inhabitiveness would seem to have been but slenderly developed in the Shawnee organization. They never remained long in any one place, and when any pretext could be found for quarrelling with their neighbours they were ever ready to avail themselves of it. Notwithstanding these facts—perhaps in consequence of them—no aboriginal race has produced so many men famous in history. Eminent among these stand the names of Blue Jacket, Cornstalk, and Logan. Towering far above all predecessors and competitors stands the subject of this sketch, whose name, according to strict Indian orthography, was Tecumtha, but who is much better known to English-speaking people by the name of Tecumseh.

The exact time and place of birth, as well as the parentage of Tecumseh, are involved in some obscurity. The precise date of his birth cannot now be ascertained. The most that can be said with certainty is that he was born sometime in 1768 or within three years afterwards—the date generally assigned being 1771—in the Miami Valley, not far from Springfield, Ohio, and within the limits of Clark County. He was one of seven children, two of which were brought into the world contemporaneously with himself. Even the significance of his name is a matter as to which there is a diversity of authority. "Tecumseh" is variously translated "The Shooting Star," "The Flying Tiger," and "The Wild-Cat Springing Upon His Prey." The first translation is the one most commonly accepted, and is probably the correct one. It is claimed by some that his paternal grandfather was a white man, and that his mother was a squaw belonging to one of the southern tribes, who had become domesticated with the Shawnees. Others represent him as being a full-blood Shawnee. All that can be definitely ascertained about his parentage is that his father was a Shawnee chief called Puckeshinwa, who was killed in battle when Tecumseh was a mere child; and that his mother was an Indian woman named Methoataske. Of the two brothers who were born at the same time, one, Kumskaukau, did nothing to distinguish himself. The other, Elskwatawa the Prophet, was destined to exert an extraordinary influence over the varying fortunes of his tribe, and to acquire a notoriety second only to that of Tecumseh himself.

Tecumseh went out on his first war-path at a very tender age, and took part in a battle between the Shawnees and a party of Kentuckians, on the banks of the Mad River, near the site where Dayton now stands. In our sketch of the life of Brant we have seen that great warrior was so terrified at the first battle in which he took part that he was compelled to sieze hold of a sapling to preserve himself from falling down in sheer terror. Tecumseh's first passage of arms was equally trying to his nerves. It is said, and we believe with truth, that he wheeled about and ran at the first fire of the enemy. As in the case of [Pg 146]Brant, however, it was only the first step that was difficult. The number of battles and skirmishes in which Tecumseh subsequently took part may be numbered by hundreds. And from that day when he fled in childish fear from the banks of the Mad River, to that disastrous fifth of October when he fell, covered with glory and wounds, at the battle of the Thames, no enemy ever saw his back.

Not long after the skirmish at Mad River he began to devote himself with great assiduity to the chase, and soon became known throughout the hunting-grounds of the west as a marksman of uncommon skill. On one occasion a number of young Shawnee hunters proposed to him a three-days' hunting expedition for a wager. Tecumseh readily accepted the proposal, and the contestants all took to the woods in different directions. At sunset of the third day they returned to their headquarters almost simultaneously. One of them exhibited twelve deerskins as the result of his expedition. None of the others—save one—could produce more than ten. Tecumseh quietly unfolded thirty-three; and from that time his supremacy as the greatest hunter of his tribe was universally admitted. But graver pursuits soon claimed his attention, and in conjunction with his brother Elskwatawa he gradually began to mature the scheme with which both their names are inseparably identified. It is not our purpose to follow him through the numerous marauding expeditions and petty campaigns in which he figured in his youthful days. We may mention however, that he took part in the battle between the combined Indian forces and the Americans under General Wayne, on the 24th of August, 1794; and that in the summer of the following year he began to style himself a chief, and to organize a party on his own account. But the series of events which have transmitted his name to posterity may be said to have commenced about the year 1805, when he first began to devote himself to what he doubtless regarded as his "mission."

This mission, as most readers are aware, had for its object the uniting of the various Indian tribes into one grand confederacy for the purpose of resisting the steady encroachments of the whites. The inception of the scheme did not originate with Tecumseh. Pontiac, the great Ottawa sachem, had conceived a similar design more than forty years before, which design had been frustrated by the battle of Bloody Run and by the subsequent vigilance of General Bradstreet. The scheme of Tecumseh and his brother, however, was much more comprehensive in its details; and though its success was of course utterly out of the question, it furnished for some years a formidable problem for the solution of the Government of the United States. Its details comprehended, first, the recovery of the entire valley of the Mississippi; second an advance eastward, and the subjugation of the white races settled on this continent; and third, the utter extermination of the latter by driving them into the Atlantic.

To bring about a general confederation of the western tribes was, as both Tecumseh and his brother well knew, a task of extreme difficulty. The concurrence of those tribes in so gigantic a scheme was not to be secured by arguments addressed simply to their reason. The most effective and certain method of gaining their coöperation was evidently to appeal to the highly-developed superstitious element within them; and this course it was determined to adopt. Tecumseh himself was of a vigorous constitution, capable of enduring great hardships. He was enthusiastic, ambitious, eloquent, and of great mental and physical activity. These qualifications admirably fitted him for the part which he now undertook to play. Upon him devolved the task of going about from place to place for the purpose of arousing [Pg 147]in the hearts of the chiefs of the scattered tribes an enthusiasm in some measure corresponding with that which fired his own. To this occupation he imparted all the indomitable energy for which, whether in the council or the field, he was always so eminently distinguished. He seemed almost to be endowed with the power of ubiquity, and by the rapidity of his movements seemed to annihilate time and space. One day he would be found in conference with the Wyandots. In an inconceivably short space of time thereafter his eloquence would be heard at the camp-fires of the Pottawatomies. He was familiar with the contents of the various treaties which from time to time had been made between the whites and the tribes of the northwest; and one of his primary objects was to prove to those whom he hoped to convert into his allies that these treaties, one and all, had been procured by fraudulent representations on the part of the whites, and assented to by native chiefs who had never been properly authorized to do so on behalf of all the tribes. There was doubtless a considerable substratum of truth in these assertions; and the aggressions of the whites, if justifiable at all, can only be justified on the ground of utility. Wherever he went, he reviewed these various treaties with all the unsparing bitterness and scorn which, in enthusiastic natures, like his, are the result of honest and inborn convictions; and he never ceased to enlarge upon the marvellous mission which had been entrusted to his brother Elskwatawa, the Prophet, of whom it is now time to give some account.

We have seen that Elskwatawa was born contemporaneously with his more celebrated brother. In his childhood and early youth he did nothing to distinguish him from other youths of his tribe, and had it not been for the vaulting ambition of Tecumseh he would probably have gone down to his grave unhonoured and unsung. He is said to have been so timid by nature as to have brought upon himself the imputation of positive cowardice; and it is certain that before he reached maturity he had seriously impaired his constitution by continued indulgence in the cup that cheers—and likewise inebriates. Contrary to what more than one American writer has said of him, however, he possessed mental endowments of a high order, with a ready wit, and a command of language that occasionally rose to eloquence. He seems to have been ambitious, in a listless, indolent sort of way; but his ambition was not supported by the fire and earnestness which characterized his brother. He was, moreover, cruel, relentless in his revenge, and utterly unscrupulous. A more shameless and abandoned liar does not figure even in the history of Indian warfare. His countenance and demeanour were singularly unprepossessing, and the loss of his right eye by an accident from an arrow in the early years of his life did not tend to beautify an expression of face which no art or disguise could have rendered other than diabolical. He had, withal, an innate love for whatever smacks of the marvellous, and was much given to tricks of legerdemain and sleight of hand. Notwithstanding his unpromising exterior, and the various other disadvantages under which he laboured, he was cunning and plausible enough to impress all with whom he came in contact with the idea that he possessed extraordinary powers of mind; and it is said that he seldom came out of any discussion without having risen in the estimation of others who had taken part in it.

In a character so peculiarly constituted as was that of Elskwatawa, Tecumseh discerned a powerful engine wherewith to work upon the superstitious credulity and untutored minds of the western barbarians. Accordingly, early in the year 1805, the "Open Door" (the English equivalent of "Elskwatawa") began to be a dreamer of [Pg 148]strange dreams, and a seer of uncanny visions. The first exhibition of his occult powers was given under the following circumstances: One day, while engaged in quietly lighting his pipe, his one eye suddenly became transfixed, and in another moment he fell down upon the ground. The medicine man of the tribe was called, who, after examining him carefully, pronounced him dead. It would have been as well for western mankind if the leech's opinion had been borne out by fact. Just when his friends were about to remove him for burial, however, his stiffened muscles relaxed, and he rose to his feet. He then told a long and ingenious story about how he had been in the Land of the Blessed, and had a personal conference with the Master of Life, who had delegated him to expound the true faith to the benighted Indians of the West. The true faith, as then expounded by the Prophet, was right and reasonable enough, and was such as no Christian minister could have found fault with. It simply inculcated sobriety, truthfulness, and honest dealing; and threatened grave penalties in case these injunctions should be disobeyed. Having got in the thin end of the wedge, however, the Prophet began to give more rein to his imagination. He began to see constant visions, and to hold almost daily intercourse with the Master of Life, whose budget of reform ere long assumed portentous dimensions. The Indians were enjoined to relinquish all the customs which they had learned from the pale-faces. They were to refrain from eating swine's flesh, beef, and mutton; the deer and the buffalo having been provided expressly for their food. They were to eat no more wheaten bread, but bread made from maize. They were not to wear linen or woollen garments, but were to clothe themselves with the skins and furs of animals, after the fashion of their ancestors. They were to abstain wholly from the pernicious fire-water of the pale-faces. They were to unite for the rescue of the Western land from the power of the white men, who had cheated them out of it, and had caused them to forsake in a great measure the habits to which their forefathers had been accustomed. Above all things they were to hold no further communion with the pale-faces, and were to take no part in the religion, arts, or appliances of the latter, all of which were unsavoury to the nostrils of the Master of Life. In the event of all these precepts being strictly adhered to, he promised that the Indians should soon be the only inhabitants left on this continent, and that they should be restored to the comforts and happiness which they had enjoyed before they had become debased by contact with the intruders upon their rightful domain.

Such being the most noteworthy features of the new gospel according to Elskwatawa, what wonder if he succeeded in imposing upon the credulity of the untutored barbarians to whom it was expounded; more especially when his pretensions were backed by the great influence and unflagging zeal of his brother Tecumseh, in whose brain the scheme of imposture probably originated! From this time forward Elskwatawa devoted himself exclusively to the prophetic calling. His own intemperate habits were abandoned at once and forever, and by his constant diatribes against drunkenness he actually succeeded for a time in restraining that vice among his disciples. All the people of his tribe, except two or three chiefs who quietly held their tongues, had implicit faith in his visions; and the consequence of that faith soon began to be startlingly apparent. The white settlers in the West gradually became aware of the danger by which they were menaced, and began to emigrate eastward. Meanwhile Tecumseh was scouring the country from north to south and from east to west, haranguing the tribes to bestir themselves in the common cause. The Indians began to move [Pg 149]hither and thither in considerable numbers, and it was evident that mischief was brewing. It will be understood that the most important features of the intrigues of Tecumseh and the Prophet had not yet been fully made known, even to the Indians themselves; but by the spring of the year 1806 a sufficient inkling of their plans had got bruited abroad to create terror among the whites. About this time William Henry Harrison, who was then Governor of Indiana Territory, and who subsequently became President of the United States, deemed it advisable to interfere. He despatched a message to the leading Shawnee chiefs, warning them that the course they were pursuing would bring calamity upon them. The following extract from his letter will give an idea of its general tenor:

"Who is this pretended prophet who dares to speak in the name of the Great Creator? Examine him. Is he more wise or virtuous than yourselves, that he should be selected to convey to you the orders of your God? Demand of him some proofs, at least, of his being the messenger of the Deity. If God has really employed him He has doubtless authorized him to perform miracles that he may be known and received as a prophet. Ask of him to cause the sun to stand still, the moon to alter its course, the rivers to cease to flow, or the dead to rise from their graves. If he does these things you may then believe that he has been sent from God. . . Clear your eyes, I beseech you, from the mist which surrounds them. No longer be imposed upon by the arts of an impostor. Drive him from your town, and let peace and harmony once more prevail among you."

No answer seems to have been vouchsafed to this missive. Meanwhile the Prophet continued to dream wonderful dreams, and to be made the medium of many supernatural communications from the Master of Life to the Indian tribes. During the summer of the year 1806 there was an eclipse of the sun. The Prophet contrived to obtain a knowledge of this beforehand, and announced that on that day he would spread darkness over the face of the earth.

"O, what authority and show of truth,
Can cunning sin cover itself withal."

The day arrived, and the sun was eclipsed at mid-day. Even those who had been disposed to be sceptical were convinced by this occurrence, and the fame of the Prophet waxed greater and greater. The activity among the Indians continued unabated, and the air was electric with rumours of impending massacres. Tecumseh continued to carry on his crusade, and in April, 1807, assembled a great body of his adherents at Greenville. Red messengers ran hither and thither with pipes and belts of wampum, and it was evident that the plot was approaching its denouement. Governor Harrison accordingly sent another message to the chiefs, denouncing the Prophet in still stronger terms than before, and enjoining them to disperse. To this message a conciliatory reply was dictated by the Prophet himself, and forwarded to Governor Harrison. All intention of creating a disturbance was distinctly repudiated, and it was claimed that the Indians had merely assembled together to hear the words of the Great Spirit.

In the spring of 1808 Tecumseh and the Prophet removed to a tract of land on the Tippecanoe River. Not long afterwards the Prophet personally visited the Governor at Vincennes, and so emphatically disclaimed any views hostile to the whites that he succeeded in convincing the Governor that his suspicions had been unfounded. In the latter part of April, 1810, however, it became known beyond doubt that the Prophet was instigating the tribes to acts of open hostility against the United States, and that the frontiers were no longer safe as places of [Pg 150]residence for the whites. After repeated messages to and fro, Tecumseh finally visited Governor Harrison at Vincennes, accompanied by four hundred armed warriors. A stormy conference, extending over several days, was the result. Tecumseh insisted on certain concessions being made—concessions for which he had always contended, and which involved the relinquishment by the United States of all claims to the territory claimed by Tecumseh on behalf of the Indians. The Governor finally promised to submit the matter to the judgment of the President at Washington. "Well," replied Tecumseh, "as the Great Chief is to determine this matter, I hope the Great Spirit will put sense enough into his head to induce him to give up this land. It is true he is so far off that he will not be injured by the war; he may sit still and drink his wine, whilst you and I will have to fight it out." At the Governor's request Tecumseh promised that in case of open war breaking out between his people and the United States, he would do his utmost to prevent the massacring of women, children and prisoners; and this promise he faithfully kept.

Further conferences followed in the course of the same year, but all to no purpose, as neither side would concede much to the claims of the other. The battle, so long delayed, took place at last at Tippecanoe, on the 7th of November, 1811. The victory was on the side of the United States, who, however, lost more men in the battle than did the Indians. It is to be remarked that this battle was brought about by the Prophet without Tecumseh's knowledge or consent, and that at the time when it took place the latter was far away from the scene of action. He was in the South, stirring up disaffection among the tribes there, and his scheme was not sufficiently matured to justify him in hazarding a battle. When intelligence of the defeat came to his ears be was greatly cast down, and for a time almost yielded to despair. His hopes soon revived, however, and from that moment he became a firm ally of Great Britain. It may further be remarked that with the battle of Tippecanoe the influence of the Prophet received its death-blow. He had confidently promised success to the Indian arms. He had assured the warriors that the Great Spirit would paralyze the American soldiery, whose bullets would fall harmless at the feet of their foes, and that the Indians would have the advantage of the light of the sun, while the Americans would grope in thick darkness. He experienced the fate of all pretenders who "protest too much." His sacred character was gone forever, and the part subsequently played by him in history was insignificant.

Then followed the war of 1812, between Great Britain and the United States. Tecumseh, having cast in his lot with the former, proved a potent ally, and played the part previously enacted by Brant in the war of the Revolution. It is not to be supposed, however, that Tecumseh coöperated with us on account of any special love which he bore us. He chose us as the least of two evils, and assisted us in fighting his old enemies merely because he hated the latter with all the venom which long and bitter feuds had engendered within his breast. He did us good service, and died bravely fighting for our cause. Such being the case, he has deserved well at our hands; but those enthusiastic hero-worshippers who have so persistently held him up to our admiration as the warm and affectionate friend of British ascendancy on this continent know little of the man and his motives. The simple truth is that Tecumseh would cheerfully have tomahawked every white man in America with his own hand had any opportunity of doing so been afforded him. It would be most unjust, however, were we either to blame him for feeling as he undoubtedly did feel, or to undervalue [Pg 151]the great services which he rendered us. Any true Indian, trained in the school in which Tecumseh was trained, and believing as he believed, would have been either a fool or a mean-spirited craven if he had felt otherwise. As for his zeal in our cause, it deserves a fitting tribute; and the fact that no monumental stone has been erected to mark the spot where he fell, is a standing reproach upon our national character; a reproach, however, which we hope to see removed.

It is neither necessary nor desirable that we should chronicle every event of his career from the time when he enlisted in our service. A very brief outline of the events intervening between the outbreak of hostilities and the battle of the Thames will suffice. On the 18th of June, 1812, the American Congress declared war against Great Britain, and in the following month of July, General Hull passed over the Detroit River into Canada. Tecumseh was then at Malden, on the eastern side of the river, together with a handful of his warriors. At Brownstown, on the opposite side, were a number of Indians resolved upon standing aloof from the conflict altogether. These latter sent a deputation to the great Shawnee, inviting him to join them. His reply was terse, emphatic, and to the point. "No," said he, indignantly, "I have taken sides with my father the King, and my bones shall bleach upon this shore before I will re-cross that stream to join in any council of neutrality." A few days afterwards he and his followers assisted the British in frightening Hull back into Michigan. Upon the surrender of Detroit, on the 16th of August, General Brock requested Tecumseh, who was in command of the Indians, not to permit his men to injure the prisoners. "No," was the reply; "I despise them too much to meddle with them."

Before crossing the Detroit river, General Brock, who was not familiar with the country thereabouts, asked Tecumseh to give him some account of it. Tecumseh knew the whole of the country much better than he knew his alphabet. He took a piece of elm bark, stretched it out upon the ground, and with the point of his scalping-knife rapidly traced upon the bark a rough but accurate plan, showing the whole face of the surrounding country. Brock was much pleased at this unexpected display of skill on the part of his brave ally, and forthwith divested himself of his crimson sash, which he placed with his own hands around Tecumseh's spare and athletic frame. Next day, seeing the warrior walking about without this adornment, the General asked for an explanation. Tecumseh replied that he had transferred the sash to one more deserving to wear it, and that he had himself placed it around the waist of Roundhead, a valiant chief of the Wyandots. General Brock approved of the transfer, and commended Tecumseh for his magnanimity. The General's estimate of Tecumseh's character was very high, in proof of which he has left the following record: "A more sagacious and gallant warrior does not, I believe, exist. He is the admiration of every one who converses with him. From a life of dissipation he has not only become in every respect abstemious, but he has likewise prevailed on all his native, and many of the other tribes, to follow his example." General Brock had been misinformed about Tecumseh's dissipation. There is no evidence that he was ever intoxicated in his life, except once, and that was when he was a very young man, before he had begun to devote himself to his great project. The General had probably confused Tecumseh with his brother, the Prophet, who before he commenced his prophetic career was more often drunk than sober.

Passing over the siege of Fort Meigs in the following year, where Tecumseh bore himself with his customary intrepidity, and [Pg 152]where by his firmness and vigilance he prevented a massacre of prisoners by the Indians, we come to the closing scenes of the life of this enterprising and dauntless warrior. General Proctor, who was in command of the British fortress at Malden, purposely concealed from Tecumseh the fact of Perry's victory on Lake Erie, which victory encouraged Harrison to invade Canada. The reason assigned by Proctor for this concealment was his fear lest the Indians might withdraw their support. The suspicion was worthy of Proctor, but did great injustice to Tecumseh, who had little in common with the proverbial rat that deserts the sinking ship. Of this man, Proctor, it is difficult for a British subject to write with a cool hand. A more arrant coward and poltroon never, it is to be hoped, wore the uniform of a British officer. Tecumseh had seen enough of Proctor's generalship to satisfy him that that officer was incompetent, and a coward to boot. He moreover detected Proctor in numerous falsehoods, and reasonably enough came to the conclusion that he was not to be trusted. He continued to fight under his wing, but there were several occasions when the impetuous Indian could not restrain his contempt. When he saw that Proctor was preparing for a retreat from Malden, he asked for an explanation. Proctor replied that he was merely about to send their valuable property up the Thames for safety. Tecumseh was not to be deceived by such a shallow representation, and could no longer refrain from speaking his mind. It was then that he made his celebrated speech, the authenticity of which is beyond question, for Proctor had it translated and exhibited to his officers for the purpose of showing up Tecumseh's insolence. The translation was found stowed away among Proctor's baggage, after his inglorious retreat from the battle of the Thames. It has been often quoted, but a part of it will bear quoting again:

"Father, listen! Our fleet has gone out; we know they have fought; we have heard the great guns; but we know nothing of what has happened to our father with the one arm (Captain Barclay). Our ships have gone one way, and we are much astonished to see our father tying up everything and preparing to run the other way, without letting his red children know what his intentions are. You always told us to remain here to take care of the lands. You always told us you would never draw your foot off British ground; but now, father, we see you are drawing back, and we are sorry to see our father do so without seeing the enemy. We must compare our father's conduct to a fat dog that carries its tail upon its back, but when affrighted it drops it between its legs and runs off. The Americans have not yet defeated us by land, neither are we sure that they have done so by water. We therefore wish to remain here and fight our enemy should he make his appearance. If they defeat us, then we will retreat with our father. . . You have got the arms and ammunition which our great father, the King, sent for his children. If you have an idea of going away, give them to us, and you may go and welcome for us. Our lives are in the hands of the Great Spirit. We are determined to defend our lands, and if it be His will, we wish to leave our bones upon them."

Proctor, however, was not to be deterred. He commenced his retreat northward and along the Thames; General Harrison, who had crossed over into Canada, following rapidly in pursuit. On the 4th of October the latter came up with the rear guard of the British, and captured the stores and ammunition, together with about a hundred prisoners. It was evident that a conflict could no longer he delayed, and on the 5th Proctor very reluctantly took up his position at Moravian village, on the right bank of the Thames. The river, along the north [Pg 153]bank of which runs the road to Detroit, forms the southern boundary of the battlefield. Several hundred yards to the north of the river was a morass, which has long since been drained and brought under cultivation. Beyond this was a narrow strip of solid ground flanked on the north by a large swamp. Along the edge of this latter, extending in a long line from east to west, and concealed behind trees and bushes, was posted the main body of Indians, under the leadership of Tecumseh. The British line, composed of a part of the Forty-first regiment, was posted in a broken semicircle round the east end of the small swamp, and extended all the way from the large swamp to the Detroit road, in the centre of which was the artillery. The American forces were posted to the north-west, west, and south of the small swamp. A body of Indians, who had espoused the American side of the quarrel, together with some regulars under Colonel Paul, were stationed between the river and the Detroit road, with a view to capturing the British artillery. Proctor's idea was to entrap the Americans into an ambush, so that when the engagement between the British and Americans had fairly commenced, Tecumseh and his Indians might swoop down upon the latter in their rear.

In consequence of the conflicting statements, official and otherwise, it is impossible to do more than approximate the number of men engaged in the battle of the Thames. It is probable, however, that the Americans had between three and four thousand regulars, besides the small body of Indians under Colonel Paul, while Proctor had not more than seven hundred British troops—worn out by fatigue—in addition to about five or six hundred Indians under Tecumseh. The signal for attack was given by General Harrison. There is no need for going into the minutiae of the conflict, the result of which, with such odds, and under such generalship, might easily have been foreseen. The Kentucky riflemen, used to fighting in the bush, saw the dark eyes of the Indians gleaming through the trees which skirted the edge of the large swamp. They charged impetuously through the smaller morass, sprang from their saddles, and engaged in a desperate hand-to-hand conflict with the barbarians. At the same moment the American cavalry charged the British line, and a few minutes sufficed to fix the fortunes of the day. The British troops were thrown into a disorder from which they were unable to rally.

Tecumseh seems to have had a prevision that this would be the last engagement in which he would take part. When he had posted his Indians along the edge of the swamp, a few hours before active operations began, he turned to the native chiefs beside him and said: "Brother warriors! we are now about to enter into an engagement from which I shall never come out. My body will remain upon the field." Then, unbuckling his sword, he delivered it to Wasegoboah, his brother-in-law, saying: "When my son becomes a noted warrior, and able to wield a sword, give this to him." He then laid aside his military dress as a Brigadier-General of the British army, and took his place among his men, dressed in the ordinary deer-skin hunting shirt which he had been accustomed to wear before allying himself with the British. His military garb had never sat comfortably on his shoulders. It added nothing to the dignity of his appearance, and in wearing it he had always felt like a daw in borrowed plumes. There was no room in his great heart for anything so petty as that fondness for tawdry finery which most Indian natures are wont to exhibit. When the Kentuckians rushed to the charge against the Indian line, Tecumseh sprang out upon the solid ground, and grandly cheered his men to stand firm, and to show themselves worthy of the brave sires from whose loins they had sprung.

[Pg 154]Of personal danger to himself he seemed to have no thought. He ran hither and thither along the line, inspiriting his men, and doing his utmost to infuse into their hearts a measure of that unflagging resolution which animated his own. Wherever the battle raged hottest, his own dauntless breast was seen in the van. Whatever human intrepidity and human intelligence could do to decide the fortunes of that day in favour of the British arms, Tecumseh did with all his might. The battle had not lasted more than five minutes, however, when he fell dead upon the turf. While he lived, the Indians gallantly seconded his efforts. And even when his voice was hushed forever; when it was no longer heard above the clash of arms, animating them to deeds of valour; when he had fallen, pierced by the bullets of his enemies; even then they continued to fight with the frenzy of despair, until they learned that the British had surrendered to their foes, and that further efforts on their part would be a simple throwing away of their lives. Then, and not until then, they abandoned all hope of success; and, moody and disheartened, flung down their arms and fled.

Meanwhile, where was Proctor? Had he, too, fallen at the head of his men, fighting gallantly in the cause of his king and country? Had he, too, left a sword behind him to be worn by his successor in remembrance of his valorous deeds? Alas, that the answers to these questions should be such that irony is utterly thrown away! The miserable story is well known, and presents too few attractions to induce us to linger over it. Suffice it to say that almost before Tecumseh had ceased to breathe, Proctor had skulked from the field, clambered into his carriage, and fled like the dastard that he was, as fast as his horses could draw him. Within twenty-four hours he was more than sixty miles on his road, and in full retreat. Being hotly pursued by Major Payne, an American officer, he then abandoned his carriage, containing his wife's letters to her "dear Henry," and continued his flight on foot. When tried by a court-martial for his disgraceful conduct he added to his infamy by endeavouring to throw the blame upon his soldiers. In this ruse he for a short time succeeded; but for a short time only. He was finally sentenced to be publicly reprimanded, and suspended from rank and pay for six months. The court that pronounced this inadequate sentence was very properly censured by the Prince Regent for its mistaken lenity. The Prince at the same time expressed his regret that a British officer should have shown himself to be so wanting in professional knowledge, and so deficient in those qualities which are required of every officer. It was directed that the finding of the court should be entered in the general order book, and read at the head of every regiment in His Majesty's service. Such a sentence, and such a censure, added to the consciousness that both were richly deserved, would have killed some men. Proctor, however, survived them both for nearly half a century, and died in Liverpool in 1859. Better, far better, had he fallen manfully at the head of his troops by the side of his brave ally, instead of living to drag out a dishonoured old age, and to blast the name of his descendants for all time to come.

The question, "Who killed Tecumseh?" has given rise to much controversy, and still remains unsettled. A great many aspirants have from time to time put forward their claims to that distinction, which claims have been carefully weighed by more than one authority without any definite decision as the result. All that can be said on the subject with absolute certainty is that the great Shawnee warrior was really killed at the battle of the Thames, on the 5th of October, 1813. A strong claim has been put forward on behalf of Colonel Richard [Pg 155]M. Johnson, whose monument in the cemetery at Frankfort, Kentucky, chronicles the circumstance that he was the slayer of Tecumseh as an undisputed fact. Claims equally strong, however, have been advanced on behalf of Colonel Whitley and a Mr. David King. The matter is of little historical importance; but those who are desirous of investigating the evidence for themselves will find a careful analysis of it in the fifteenth chapter of Drake's "Life of Tecumseh."

The scene of the battle of the Thames is now a cultivated farm, the owner of which is a Mr. Dickson. The swamp through which Colonel Johnson charged on his way to the Indians was long ago drained of its moisture, and grain is annually grown on or very near the exact spot where Tecumseh fell. There are numerous indentations marking the graves of some of those who were slain in the battle. The County Council of Kent several years ago granted a small sum towards the cost of erecting a monument to the memory of Tecumseh, and there have been a few private subscriptions for the same purpose, but a sufficient sum has not yet been raised to carry out the project, which seems to have temporarily fallen to the ground. Our local Government might do worse than take the matter in hand. Although we cannot blind our eyes to the fact that Tecumseh cared little or nothing for the British, except in so far as they could be made subservient to his own designs, we cannot help remembering that he died like a brave man upon our soil, fighting in defence of our freedom, while our own officer in command skulked away in secret like a thief in the night. The actions of many of us, too, are apt to be influenced by our sympathies rather than by our settled convictions; and the name of Tecumseh is one which we have always delighted to honour. We are not ashamed to own that the name of that western barbarian who fought for us so bravely casts a glamour over our judgment to this day, and we should be much gratified if we could feel assured that this sketch might do something towards promoting the erection of a monument to his memory. We are even disposed to look with some degree of charitable complacency upon the proceeding of those over-zealous enthusiasts who made the supposed discovery of the great warrior's remains about four years ago, and whose explanations resulted in such a pitiful fiasco when the remains where subjected to the merciless scientific scrutiny of Professor Wilson and his collaborateurs. The Professor, it will be remembered, after establishing that the "remains" consisted of a miscellaneous hodge-podge of bones of dogs and other animals, together with portions of several human skeletons, gravely concluded his report by expressing his belief that the said remains were not those of Tecumseh. What really became of Tecumseh's body after the battle will probably never be known. Some one of the Indian corpses, from the thighs whereof the Kentuckians cut strips of skin which were afterwards converted into razor-strops, may or may not have been his. We fondly cherish the hope that old Pheasant's story was true, and that the Shawnee braves stole to the battle ground after nightfall and conveyed Tecumseh's body to the depths of the neighbouring forest, where they "buried it darkly at dead of night." The spot where he fell, however, can be easily ascertained, and that spot would be the most appropriate site for a monument. His memory at least deserves so much at our hands.

The character of Tecumseh is one eminently calculated to arouse the enthusiasm of all who make themselves acquainted with its many-sided features. It embodied all the most marked characteristics of his race, prominent among which were indomitable courage and fortitude. But it also embodied [Pg 156]much more. Unlike Brant, he enjoyed no advantages of early education or association with cultivated Europeans; and any particulars in which he differed for the better from an untutored savage are due to his innate moral and intellectual greatness alone. Regarded simply as a man of genius, there is no name among the Indians of North America worthy of being brought into comparison with his. His natural mental endowments, indeed, were such as would have made him a distinguished man in any age or nation. Those who have been accustomed to regard him as a mere barbarian have not read those impassioned and lofty flights of eloquence which Dechouset found so much difficulty in translating, and but a few of which have been preserved. The oratory of Tecumseh must have been something wonderful. Mr. Cass—himself an orator not unknown to fame—has pronounced the following eulogium upon it:—"It was the utterance of a great mind roused by the strongest motives of which human nature is susceptible, and developing a power and a labour of reason which commanded the admiration of the civilized, as justly as the confidence and pride of the savage. When he spoke to his brethren on the glorious theme that animated all his actions, his fine countenance lighted up, his firm and erect frame swelled with deep emotion which his own stern dignity could scarcely repress; every feature and gesture had its meaning, and language flowed tumultuously and swiftly from the fountain of his soul."

Long before his name was known beyond the limits of his own tribe, Tecumseh's generosity and humanity were such as to render him conspicuous among his young companions. He devoted much of his time to bestowing kindness and attention upon the aged and infirm, repairing their wigwams upon the approach of winter, and providing them with food and clothing. These qualities grew up with him in his youth, and accompanied him through his manhood. His humanity, even to the whites, whom he hated, was so well known that the women of the frontier had no fears for themselves or their children when Tecumseh was in the neighbourhood. Repeated instances might be given in which he interfered to prevent the massacre of prisoners; but, so far as we are aware, no charge of cruelty has been made against him by any modern writer. He never mingled with the whites when he could avoid it, and never acquired sufficient knowledge of their language to carry on a conversation with Europeans without the aid of an interpreter. The name of "The Napoleon of the West," which has frequently been applied to him, is by no means so absurd as a superficial acquaintance with his character and history might lead one to suppose. Unless our estimate of him is erroneous, his natural genius was at least upon a par with that of the great Corsican, while his ambition was far higher and nobler. He was in the strictest sense of the word a patriot, who desired to save his people from the destruction that threatened them. He saw his race humbled and down-trodden, driven from the land which their forefathers had occupied, and scattered hither and thither, "like withered leaves in an autumnal blast." He saw their morals corrupted and their humanity debased. Who shall blame him for his hatred of the white man, who had brought this ruin and desolation upon his people, and whose gradual encroachments threatened at no distant day to leave the red men "Lords of their presence, and no land beside?" Who shall blame him for forming his grand scheme of a confederacy which should restore his race to their former state, and should drive the pale-faces into the sea? What matter that his project was unsuccessful? From its very inception there was never even a remote possibility of its success; but the idea was itself none the less grand and patriotic. Indeed the [Pg 157]utter impracticability of the scheme constitutes one of its most chivalrous elements. We have never been accustomed to abate one jot of our admiration of Leonidas because he was unsuccessful at Thermopylae. Light lie the ground over thee, thou matchless Indian!

In height, Tecumseh was nearly six feet. His frame was lithe, sinewy, and muscular, and was capable of enduring great bodily fatigue with impunity. His forehead was full, high, and rather narrow. His general appearance was grand and imposing, even when his face was not lighted up with enthusiasm. His strong prejudices against the customs of the pale-faces prevented his ever sitting to have his portrait painted. The portrait by which he is best known may be found in Lossing's "Field Book of the War of 1812." It is engraved from a pencil-sketch made by Pierre Le Dru, a young French trader, in the year 1808. The dress, which has been substituted for that of the original sketch, is that of a Brigadier-General, which was the rank held by Tecumseh in the British army at the time of his death. The medallion on his breast, exhibiting the head of George III., was presented to Tecumseh's father by Lord Dorchester, when that nobleman was Governor-General of Canada.

As it is impossible to fix the precise date of Tecumseh's birth, it is of course impossible to give his exact age at the time of his death. Historians are in the habit of saying that he died in his forty-fifth year. We have seen that he was born either in 1768 or within three years thereafter, so that the age commonly assigned to him is not far wide of the mark. In his twenty-ninth year, in compliance with the wishes of his relatives, who desired the propagation of his race, he married a woman called Mamate, who was several years older than himself. She bore him a son, upon whom was bestowed the name of Pugeshashenwa. Not long after the birth of this son his mother died, and Tecumseh never contracted a second alliance. A few years ago the son was living with his tribe beyond the Mississippi, and was in receipt of a yearly pension from the British Government. His habits were dissipated, and no act of his life ever proved that he was worthy to wear the sword bequeathed to him by his valiant sire. We have never heard of his death; but he must have been born before the advent of the present century, and if still living, he has reached a more patriarchal age than persons of his dissipated habits generally attain. The Prophet Elskwatawa is also said to have enjoyed a pension from the British Government up to the time of his death, which took place many years ago in one of the western territories.

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Mr. Walkem was born in November, 1834, in that part of the town of Newry which lies within the county of Armagh, Ireland. He is of English descent on the paternal side. His father, Mr. Charles Walkem, belongs to a family which has for several generations been settled near Saltash, at the head of Plymouth Sound, on the borders of Devon and Cornwall. The latter, who is still living, is by profession a surveyor, and at the time of the birth of the subject of this sketch was attached to the Royal Engineers' staff engaged in prosecuting the Royal survey of Ireland. While so attached he married Miss Boomer, a daughter of the late Mr. George Boomer, of Lisburn, County Down, by whom he has had a family of ten children, of which the subject of this sketch is the eldest. This lady's brother, the Very Rev. M. Boomer, is the present Dean of Huron. Another brother, the late Mr. A. K. Boomer, was a well-known merchant of Toronto until his death a few years ago. In the spring of 1844 the family emigrated from England to Canada, and after residing a short time at St. Catharines, and afterwards at Quebec, settled at Montreal. Mr. Walkem the elder, whose profession and military service rendered him liable to frequent changes of residence, came to this country with the late Colonel Estcourt, R.E., to assist in fixing the boundary between Canada and the United States under the Ashburton Treaty. He subsequently became Chief Draughtsman on the Royal Engineering Staff in Canada, and is at the present time connected with the Militia Department at Ottawa.

Prior to his arrival in this country, and while he was a mere lad, George Anthony Walkem attended the Grammar School at Preston, in Lancashire, where his parents then resided. The stay of the family in St. Catharines was too brief to admit of his attending any school there with advantage. The removal to Quebec took place in the spring of 1845, and he at once began to attend the High School of that city. He continued his attendance until the autumn of 1846, when Mr. Walkem, senior, having become Surveyor of the Royal Engineering Staff, was ordered to Montreal. The family having become settled in Montreal, George attended for some time at Belden's Academy, an educational establishment which enjoyed a high reputation in those days. He afterwards attended the High School, and finally completed his education—so far as it can be said to have been completed at school—at McGill College. Concurrently with his attendance at the two institutions last named he was also engaged in the study of the law. In 1848, when he was only fourteen years of age, he entered the law office of Mr. George Futvoye, late Deputy Minister of Militia. In that office he remained about three years. In 1851 his articles were transferred to Mr.[Pg 159]—now Sir—John Rose, of the firm of Rose & Monk. In the office of that firm he completed his term of service, but upon such completion he was still under age, and could not be admitted to practice. He accordingly entered the mercantile establishment of his uncle, the late Mr. A. K. Boomer, of Toronto, with a view to gaining a practical experience of the routine of mercantile business. He remained in his uncle's establishment about a year, when (in 1856) he repaired to Montreal, and passed the Bar of Lower Canada as an advocate. During his residence in Toronto, however, he had formed a preference for the Upper Province, and soon after passing as an advocate in Montreal he returned to Toronto, and became a student in the office of Mr. George Morphy. In 1861 he was called to the Bar of Upper Canada, and practised for a short time with his former principal, under the style of Morphy & Walkem, but the firm was not long in existence. Mr. Walkem having become convinced that British Columbia afforded excellent opportunities for the rapid advancement of a capable man, resolved to repair thither. He left Toronto early in 1862 for Vancouver's Island. Upon reaching his destination he found that he was unable to practise his profession, as no barristers except those who had been called to the Bar of England or Ireland were recognized there. After much delay and difficulty he was admitted, in 1864, under a special order issued by the Duke of Newcastle, who then held the post of Colonial Secretary in the Imperial Government. He at once entered upon the practice of his profession, and achieved both fame and pecuniary success. He became a Queen's Counsel and one of the most prominent citizens in the Province. He also entered public life and became a member of the Legislative Council of the Province. On the 5th of July, 1871, British Columbia became a constituent part of the Dominion. On the 12th of January following, Mr. Walkem was appointed a member of the Executive Council, and was Chief Commissioner of Lands and Works from that date until the 23rd of December, when he accepted office in the DeCosmos Administration, and became Attorney-General. About seven weeks afterwards (11th February, 1874), in consequence of the passage of the Act respecting Dual Representation, Mr. DeCosmos, the Premier, resigned his office. A reconstruction of the Government followed, and Mr. Walkem became Premier, retaining the portfolio of Attorney-General. Within a month afterwards, and during Mr. Walkem's tenure of office as Premier, Mr. James D. Edgar reached Victoria from Toronto as the emissary of the Dominion Government. During the previous November, Mr. Mackenzie, the Premier of the Dominion, had, in a speech delivered at Sarnia, announced the Government policy with reference to the construction of the Canada Pacific Railway. That policy contemplated delay in the construction of this great public work, and the announcement was very disappointing to British Columbians. Mr. Edgar was sent out to discuss the question with the Local Government at Victoria, and to remove, if possible, the popular disappointment which existed there. The situation of affairs was fully discussed between him and Mr. Walkem, but the discussion came to nothing, and after Mr. Edgar's return the people of British Columbia were in a more dissatisfied state than ever. In the month of June following Mr. Walkem repaired to England, to urge upon the Colonial Secretary that the Dominion should at once proceed with the work of constructing the railway, and should carry out the terms upon which British Columbia had entered the Union. The result of his mission, as everybody knows, was the "Carnarvon Terms," as they are called. By thus bringing about an amicable adjustment of a dispute which [Pg 160]threatened, for a time, to interfere with the smooth working of Confederation, if not to break it up, so far as British Columbia is concerned, Mr. Walkem won golden opinions. It is said that his mission was discharged with great tact and judgment, and that he produced a very favourable impression on the British statesmen with whom he was brought into contact. His reception in London was very cordial and flattering, and before his departure a banquet was given in his honour at Willis's Rooms, at which Sir John Rose, his former principal, presided.

George Anthony Walkem
George Anthony Walkem

On the 27th of January, 1876, Mr Walkem's Ministry resigned, and was succeeded by a new Administration formed under the leadership of the Hon. Andrew C. Elliott. Mr. Walkem was unanimously elected leader of the Opposition, and continued to act as such until the spring of 1878, when he succeeded in defeating the Government. At the general election which followed, Mr. Elliott's Ministry were placed in a very decided minority, the Premier himself suffering personal defeat in the city of Victoria. The Ministry resigned in July, and Mr. Walkem was called on to form a new one, which he soon succeeded in accomplishing. He called to his assistance Mr. T. B. Humphreys as Provincial Secretary, and Mr. Robert Beaven as Minister of Finance, he himself undertaking the duties of Attorney-General and Chief Commissioner of Lands and Works. By this means the membership of the Executive was reduced from four to three, and the salary of a minister was saved to the Province. Upon returning to his constituents9 after accepting office he was elected by acclamation. His Government still remains in power. The principal legislative enactments by which his tenure of office has been characterized are an Act providing for the re-distribution of Parliamentary seats on the Mainland; an Act excluding judges, magistrates, sheriffs, police-officers, and employees of the Dominion Government to whose offices annual salaries are attached (except Post Office officials), from exercising the franchise at Provincial elections; an Act respecting the Crown Lands of the Province; an Act amending the License Law; an Act authorizing the employment of prisoners outside the walls of gaols; and an Act authorizing the Benchers of the Law Society to admit barristers and attorneys called to the Bar of Great Britain in the other Provinces of Canada, and certain other persons, to the practice of the legal profession in British Columbia. An Act was also passed in the session of 1878 whereby every Chinese resident of British Columbia over twelve years of age was required to take out a license every three months, for which license he was to be charged a sum of ten dollars, payable in advance. This Act was the subject of much discussion by the Canadian and United States press, but the Provincial courts pronounced it unconstitutional, and it has therefore become inoperative.

Mr. Walkem is a man of many friends, being endowed with a bright and cheery disposition which makes him a general favourite. He is a good descriptive writer, and some published letters of his on the scenery of California have won high encomiums from the press. He is also an accomplished artist, and at several Provincial Exhibitions his pictures have obtained prizes in the professional class. He is President of the Law Society of British Columbia; Gold Commissioner, under the Gold Mining Ordinance of 1867, and the Acts amending the same; a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society; and a member of the Special Committee of the British Association for the Advancement of Science.

On the 29th of December, 1879, Mr. Walkem married Sophie Edith, fifth daughter of the late Hon. Henry Rhodes, of Victoria, British Columbia.

Rev. Arthur Sweatman, signed as Arthur Toronto
Rev. Arthur Sweatman, signed as Arthur Toronto

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Dr. Sweatman, Bishop Bethune's successor in the Diocese of Toronto, was born in London, England, on the 19th of November, 1834. He is a son of the late Dr. John Sweatman, who was a London physician of some eminence in his profession half a century ago. The latter was for many years attached to the staff of Middlesex Hospital, Charles Street, Berners Street, where he had for a friend and contemporary the eminent anatomist, Sir Charles Bell. He died in 1839. The subject of this sketch was early distinguished by his piety, and by his love for sacred themes and pursuits. From his youth he was destined for the Church, and his education was conducted with a special view to that end. Like many other pious and useful men, his life has not been marked by great variety of incident, and offers a somewhat narrow field to the biographer. While still a mere child he was placed at a small private boarding school kept by a lady at Blackheath, where he received his rudimentary education. When he was about eleven years of age he was removed to a more advanced school kept by a Mr. A. G. Ray, at Heathmount, Hampstead. From there he was transferred to London University College, Upper Gower Street, where he spent several years, and where he made rapid progress in learning. In the year 1849 he began to teach a Sunday School in connection with Christ Church, Marylebone, and continued to discharge the functions incidental to that position for a period of about six years. In 1855, after an interval of private study, and having just completed his nineteenth year, he entered as a student at Christ's College, Cambridge, an institution at which a greater number of eminent divines have been educated than any other college of equal magnitude at Cambridge. It was here also that the illustrious author of "Paradise Lost" graduated, and a mulberry tree said to have been planted by the poet's own hands in the College garden is still tended with affectionate care. Here, in 1856, Mr. Sweatman obtained a scholarship. His collegiate career, without being characterized by unusual brilliancy or attainments, was marked by a rapid development of his faculties, by the acquirement of an excellent classical education, and by a reputation for zealous piety and high moral worth. On the 5th of December, 1856, he was elected as Superintendent of the Jesus Lane, or Gownsmen's Sunday School—a remarkable institution founded more than half a century ago, which is conducted entirely by students and graduates of the University of Cambridge. Mr. Sweatman held this position for somewhat more than two years, as successor to the present Bishop of Sierra Leone. While in residence at the University he also belonged to other organizations of a kindred nature, among which may be mentioned the Cambridge Prayer Union and [Pg 162]the Cambridge Undergraduates' Tract Society. In 1859 he graduated with mathematical honours as Senior Optime. At Christmas of the same year he was ordained Deacon in St. Paul's Cathedral, London, by Bishop Tait; and Priest at Christmas, 1860, in the Chapel Royal, Whitehall. In 1859 he became curate of the Church of the Holy Trinity, Cloudesley Square, Islington. During the following year he founded an establishment which has since become well known as the Islington Youth's Institute, an evening club for working boys and young people employed in offices and shops. At this institution, which at once became, and still continues to be, a remarkable success, he spent most of his evenings during his residence at Islington, conducting it himself, and taking a zealous part in the instruction of the classes which were formed in connection with it. Its establishment supplied a want which had long been felt. The youth of the neighbourhood resorted to it in great numbers, and the opportunity was afforded to them of spending their evenings with equal pleasure and profit. The method of instruction was carefully adapted to meet the wants of those in attendance, by whom it was, and has ever since been, fully appreciated. The Archbishop of Canterbury became an active patron of this Institute, and it has been the forerunner of many institutions of a similar character in various parts of the kingdom.

In 1862 he took his degree of M.A., and during the following year he was appointed to the curacy of St. Stephen's, Canonbury, and to the mastership of the Modern Department of the Islington Proprietary School. On the invitation of Archdeacon (now Bishop) Hellmuth, he came out to this country in 1865, to be the first Head Master of the London Collegiate Institute, which had just been established. In 1871, in compliance with a pressing invitation, he became Assistant Mathematical and Scientific Master in Upper Canada College, Toronto.

In 1872 he was appointed Rector of Grace Church, Brantford, as successor to the Rev. J. C. Usher, and was also appointed Examining Chaplain to the Bishop of Huron. The latter post he continued to occupy from the time of his receiving the appointment down to the time of his election, in 1879, to the high position which he now occupies. Subsequent to 1873 he acted as Clerical Secretary to the Synod of the Diocese of Huron, and also as Secretary to the House of Bishops. In 1874, at Bishop Hellmuth's request, he returned to London as Head Master of Hellmuth College, and in 1875 became Canon of the Cathedral there. He also became Assistant Rector of St. Paul's, Woodstock, and Archdeacon of Brant in 1876; and on the Bishop of Huron's visit to England, he was appointed by his Lordship as his Commissary from June, 1878, to February, 1879; during which time he conducted the affairs of the Diocese with marked ability and success. The circumstances under which he came to be elected, in the month of March, 1879, to the Bishopric rendered vacant by the death of the late Bishop Bethune are still fresh in the public memory. It will be remembered that the contest between the High and Low Church parties was both keen and protracted. At first the rival candidates were Archdeacon Whitaker, as the exponent of the opinions of the former party, and the Rev. Dr. Sullivan as the nominee of the other. When the Synod had been in session for some days it began to be apparent that there was little probability of the election of either of those gentlemen, and votes began to be cast for various other candidates, including Principal Lobley, the Rev. John Pearson, the Rev. James Carmichael, and others. Day after day passed, and ballot after ballot was taken, but owing to the peculiar method of voting, and the double majority required for the successful [Pg 163]candidate, any definite result still seemed as far off as ever. At last, on the 5th of March, a conference between the leading spirits of the Church Association and those of the High Church party was held, and a compromise arrived at. It was agreed that Mr. Sweatman, whose moderate views, and whose peculiar qualifications for the episcopal chair, were well known, should be the new Bishop, and that the Church Association should be dissolved. At the next ballot accordingly—which was the twenty-fourth ballot taken—the vote was almost unanimous in the present Bishop's favour, and he was declared to have been duly elected. The labours of the Synod were formally brought to a close on the following morning. Bishop Sweatman's consecration took place at St. James's Cathedral, Toronto, with the prescribed ceremonies, on the 1st of May following.

Bishop Sweatman is an admirable writer of English, and his pulpit utterances are marked by ripe scholarship and elegance of diction. His election to the bishopric has been productive of the happiest results to the Diocese, where his moderation and excellent sense have already won for him many warm friends. He devotes himself assiduously to the duties of his sacred office. His wife, by whom he has a family, was formerly Miss Susannah Garland, of London, England.

On the 30th of October, 1879, Bishop Sweatman received the degree of D.D., "jure dignitatis," from the University of Cambridge.

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Since the death of Sir George Cartier no French Canadian statesman has enjoyed a wider popularity among his Conservative fellow-countrymen than the present Minister of Public Works. He is of French Canadian descent on both sides of his house. His father, the late Mr. John Langevin, was formerly Assistant Civil Secretary under Lords Gosford and Sydenham. His mother was Sophia Scholastique, a daughter of Major La Force, who served his country loyally during the American invasion of 1812,-13, and -14. Major La Force's father—who was the great grandfather of the subject of this sketch—is said to have been an acting Commodore of the British fleet on Lake Ontario during the American War of Independence.

He was born at the city of Quebec, on the 25th of August, 1826, and received his education at the Quebec Seminary. He is said to have been a proficient student, more especially in the department of Mathematics. He left school in 1846, and became a law student in the office of the late Hon. A. N. Morin, at Montreal. He had not long been so employed when he began to write for the press. In the autumn of 1847 he became editor of the Mélanges Religieux, a paper devoted to politics and theology, and published in Montreal. He afterwards became editor of the Journal of Agriculture, also published in Montreal, and contributed occasional editorial articles to one of the daily papers of that city. Upon Mr. Morin's retirement from practice, young Langevin entered the office of the late George E. Cartier, where he remained until the completion of his legal studies. In the month of October, 1850, he was called to the Bar of his native Province, and began practice in Montreal. A year later he removed to Quebec, which has ever since been his home.

Soon after taking up his abode at Quebec he began to interest himself in the promotion of railway enterprises, and was elected to the position of Secretary-Treasurer of the North Shore Railway Company. He subsequently became Vice-President of the Company. In 1854 he married Justine, eldest daughter of the late Lieutenant-Colonel, Charles H. Tetu, J.P. During the following year he wrote an essay on Canada for circulation at the Paris Exhibition. To this essay, which extended to 186 printed pages, the Exhibition Committee awarded the first of three extra prizes. In 1856 he was elected as the representative of Palace Ward in the City Council of Quebec, and became chairman of the local Water Works Committee. Next year (1857) he assumed the editorship of the Courrier du Canada, and acted as Mayor of Quebec during the absence of the Mayor-elect—the late Dr. Morrin—in England. At the elections held in the following December he was himself returned as Mayor, and continued to fill that position for the three succeeding years. During his term of office he visited England on a mission [Pg 165]connected with the financial affairs of the city, and also on business relating to the North Shore Railway Company.

Hector Louis Langevin
Hector Louis Langevin
Lith. by Rolph Smith Ltd Toronto from Photo by W. J. Topley, Ottawa

The same month which witnessed his first election to the dignity of Mayor of Quebec also witnessed his advent into political life. At the general elections held in December, 1857, he offered himself as a candidate in the Conservative interest for the representation of the county of Dorchester in Parliament. He was returned at the head of the poll, and continued to represent that constituency in the Assembly until Confederation. After Confederation he represented it in the House of Commons until 1874. His first Parliamentary session was a somewhat notable one. He took his seat in the House as a supporter of the Macdonald-Cartier Administration, which was defeated in the course of the session on the seat of Government question, and was succeeded by the brief administration under Messrs. Brown and Dorion. It was Mr. Langevin who moved the resolution of want of confidence which accomplished the defeat of that short-lived administration, and for this he has been accused of violating the rules of Parliamentary courtesy by his undue haste. "There can be no doubt," says Mr. Fennings Taylor, "that the resolution exactly expressed the sentiment of Parliament, but it is by no means as clear that the time of submitting it was well chosen. Less haste would not, in all probability, have altered the vote; perhaps it might have increased the majority by which it was affirmed. In any case it would have placed the proceeding beyond the reproach of unfairness, and have effectually removed it from the grave imputation, which has been affixed to it by many, of being wanting in Parliamentary courtesy. In affairs of state the means as well as the end should be considered. The proceeding appeared to lack generosity, and though it offended no rule, it was not, so far as we are aware, supported by any example of Parliament." After the perpetration of the "Double Shuffle" Mr. Langevin was a zealous supporter of the Cartier-Macdonald Administration, and indeed continued to support Mr. Cartier's policy so long as that gentleman continued in active political life.

During the years 1861 and 1862 Mr. Langevin was President of the St. Jean Baptiste Society of Quebec; and during the two following years he was President of the Institut Canadien. In 1862 he published a work entitled Droit Administratif, ou Manuel des Paroisses et Fabriques, which received high commendation from the Lower Canadian press. On the 30th of March, 1864, he was created a Queen's Counsel, and on the same date he became Solicitor-General for Lower Canada in the Taché-Macdonald Government, and a member of the Executive Council. During the month of November, 1866, he became Postmaster-General in the Coalition Government, and retained that office until the Union.

In the proceedings which resulted in Confederation Mr. Langevin took a prominent part. A speech made by him in the course of the debates was regarded at the time as displaying remarkable powers of argument. He was one of the delegates on behalf of Lower Canada to the Charlottetown Conference of 1864; and also represented his Province at the Quebec Convention held later in the same year. He also attended the Conference held in London, England, two years afterwards, when the terms of union were finally settled.

When Confederation had been accomplished, Mr. Langevin accepted office as Secretary of State for the Dominion in the Government formed on the 1st of July, 1867. He was at the same time sworn of the Privy Council; and during the following year he was created a C.B. (Civil.) Dual Representation being then permissible, he successfully contested the representation of the county of Dorchester in the Local [Pg 166]Legislature at the general elections of 1867. He sat in the Local House for Dorchester until 1872, when he was returned by acclamation for Quebec Centre, which constituency he thenceforward represented until 1874, when he retired. He retained the portfolio of Secretary of State in the Dominion Cabinet until the 8th of December, 1869, when he was transferred to the Department of Public Works. During his Secretaryship he was ex officio Registrar-General of Canada, and Superintendent-General of Indian affairs. He was also a Commissioner to assist the Speaker in the management of the interior economy of the House of Commons, and Chairman of the Railway Committee of the Privy Council. In 1870 he was created a Knight Commander of the Roman Order of Pope St. Gregory the Great.

In 1871 Mr. Langevin visited British Columbia at the desire of the Privy Council, for the purpose of acquiring a knowledge of that Province, in relation to the western terminus of the Canada Pacific Railway, and for the purpose of ascertaining what public works were needed there. On his return he published a report showing the result of his observations.

In the session of 1873, during the absence in England of Sir George Cartier, Mr. Langevin acted as Conservative leader in the Province of Quebec; and after Sir George's death he was permanently appointed to that position. He retired from office with his colleagues in November, 1873, in consequence of the Pacific Scandal disclosures.

In 1876 Mr. Langevin was returned to Parliament by the electors of Charlevoix. His election was contested, and subsequently cancelled by the Supreme Court, but he was again returned by the same constituency in April, 1877. At the general elections held on the 17th of September, 1878, he was an unsuccessful candidate for the representation of Rimouski. In the Conservative Cabinet, formed by Sir John Macdonald on the 18th of October following, Mr. Langevin accepted the portfolio of Postmaster-General. Having been defeated in Rimouski he was without a seat in Parliament. Mr. William Macdougall, however, the member-elect for Three Rivers, made way for him by nominally accepting an assistant postmastership. On the 21st of November, Mr. Langevin was returned for Three Rivers by acclamation, and now represents that constituency in the House. He retained the portfolio of Postmaster-General until the 20th of May, 1879, when he was appointed Minister of Public Works.

Mr. Langevin is a man of active mind, and is attentive to the duties of his office. In the early days of his Parliamentary career his speeches were marked by diffuseness; but practice and criticism have cured him of this drawback. He now speaks with coolness and precision, and is not easily disturbed by hostile interruptions.

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Dr. Carman comes of U. E. Loyalist stock on both the paternal and maternal sides. His father is Mr. Philip Carman, fifth son of the late Captain Michael Carman, who had charge of a company of militia in the Upper Province during the war of 1812-13 and -14. The family has been settled in the county of Dundas for nearly a century, and during the whole of that period they have been prominent and highly-respected citizens. The Bishop's father, Mr. Philip Carman abovementioned, has held various high municipal offices, and has occupied the position of Warden of the united counties of Stormont, Dundas, and Glengarry. He has always been an earnest promoter of schools, and of the cause of popular education generally, and has taken an especial pride in affording to the numerous members of his own family the best educational advantages to be obtained in the country. He is a zealous member and supporter of the Methodist Episcopal Church, in which his son has risen to a foremost place. His first wife, who was the mother of the subject of this sketch, was Emmeline Shaver, a daughter of Colonel Peter Shaver, who also fought at the head of a company of militia during the American invasion. Colonel Shaver was a well-known resident of Dundas county, which he represented for many years in the old Legislative Assembly of Upper Canada.

The father of Bishop Carman has always been a pronounced Reformer in politics, and a vigorous upholder of popular rights. The parents of Captain Carman and Colonel Shaver were among the band of Loyalists who came over to this country immediately after the close of the Revolutionary War, under the auspices of Sir John Johnson, son of the celebrated Sir William Johnson. They both received grants of land in the neighbourhood where their descendants have ever since resided, and they both added greatly to their patrimony. They acquired considerable estates, and became the heads of large and prosperous families, of which there are many surviving branches at the present day. The subject of this sketch, who is the eldest of a family of nine children, was born on the 27th of June, 1833, at the family homestead, in the township of Matilda, in the county of Dundas, Upper Canada, on a farm within the limits of what is now the pretty village of Iroquois, on the St. Lawrence, a few miles east of Prescott. He received his preparatory education at the Dundas county Grammar School, and graduated in Arts at Victoria College, Cobourg, in 1854. He was immediately afterwards appointed head master of the Dundas county Grammar School, where he had formerly been a student. He retained this position for three years, whence was appointed to the chair of Mathematics in the Belleville Seminary, an educational institution which was then opened at Belleville under the auspices of the General Conference of the Methodist Episcopal Church. He was soon afterwards appointed President of the Seminary, which was incorporated in May, 1857. After a few years it was found desirable to affiliate the institution to the Provincial University, in order that its progress might keep pace with the growing interests of the Province. After a brief existence as an affiliated college, an Act was obtained whereby the name of the institution was changed to Albert College, and limited university powers were attached to it. By this Act a Senate was created, with power to make statutes for conferring degrees in Arts. The Senate continued to grant degrees and honours until 1871, when an Act was obtained from the Ontario Legislature making it a body corporate, with the full powers and privileges of a university. Subsequently the present course of study in Arts was established, and provision has since been made for other Faculties.

During the eighteen years ending in August, 1875, the subject of this sketch continued to preside over the institution, and to his ability and perseverance much of its prosperity is fairly attributable. In the interval he had received ordination in the Methodist Episcopal Church, and had become known as an eloquent and effective preacher of the gospel. He was admitted into the Bay of Quinté Annual Conference of the Church as early as 1857. In 1860 he was ordained a deacon by the late Bishop Richardson, and an elder in 1864 by Bishop Smith. He obtained his Master's degree in 1860, and that of Doctor of Divinity in 1874. During the last named year he was elected and consecrated Bishop at the General Conference of the body held at Napanee. He is still Chancellor of the University, and takes an active interest in all matters pertaining to the cause of popular education. He is at the present time engaged in a canvass in the interests of the new Ladies' College, at St. Thomas—an institution the foundation whereof is largely due to his energy and influence.

Dr. Carman has written much for the Canada Christian Advocate, the connexional journal, and has contributed to various other periodicals throughout the country. He has published several pamphlets, the best known of which is his rejoinder to Dr. Young, of the University of Toronto, on "Necessity and Free Will." He is also the author of the Introduction to Dr. Thomas Webster's "Life of Rev. James Richardson, a Bishop of the Methodist Episcopal Church in Canada," published in Toronto several years ago. In 1860 he married Mary, daughter of Mr. James Sisk, by whom he has a family of four children.

Francis Bond Head
Francis Bond Head

[Pg 169]



In studying the annals of this country during the last half century we become acquainted with many greater names than that of Sir Francis Bond Head, but we meet with scarcely one that has been more widely known in its day and generation, or upon which the verdict of history has been more definitely and emphatically pronounced. It fell to the lot of Sir Francis to occupy a high and important position in Upper Canada at a very critical period of her history—at a period when a born statesman and a thoroughly trained diplomatist of the greatest conceivable foresight and sagacity would have found the position a sufficiently trying one. Sir Francis was endowed by nature with few or none of the qualities which go to the making of a statesman or diplomatist; and of political knowledge or training he had, at the time of his appointment to the Lieutenant-Governorship of this Province, as little as any Englishman of decent education could possibly have. The result of an appointment made under such circumstances was disaster to the Province, and something nearly approaching ignominy to himself. As a civil administrator in a disturbed and grievance-ridden colony, he was altogether out of his proper element, and furnished a signal instance of the round peg in the square hole. His administration extended over little more than two years, but during that brief period he contrived to embroil himself with his own Executive, with the Home Government from which he had received his appointment, and with pretty nearly every one who was desirous of promoting the cause of political liberty in Upper Canada. He also contrived to do an amount of mischief which left traces behind it for many years after he had ceased to have any control over Canadian affairs. And yet it would be most unjust to represent him as a deliberately bad or ill-intentioned man. He was simply a weak man out of his proper sphere, who—in the quasi-philosophic jargon of the present day—was unable to bring himself into harmony with his environment. Rash, inconsiderate, and fond of producing strong effects, he was constantly doing uncommon things with an eye to theatrical display. Later in life a certain measure of wisdom came to him, but at the time of his arrival in this country he was not only destitute of political knowledge, but was absolutely without deliberate political convictions of any kind. On this subject his own words are sufficiently clear. In his "Narrative"—one of the most extraordinary contributions to history in the English language—he tells us, with charming frankness, that at the time of his first entrance into Toronto, in January, 1836, he was no more connected with human politics than the horses that drew him; that he had never joined any political party; never attended a political discussion; never even voted at an election, or taken any part in [Pg 170]one. What wonder that a man so destitute of experience should have found himself in a false position when required to satisfy the demands of such earnest, uncompromising zealots as William Lyon Mackenzie and his following—men who were undoubtedly in the right as to the main questions at issue, but whose natural element was opposition; who were wont to discuss politics in the spirit of hot-gospellers; and who would have been reduced to the lowest depths of despair if they had no "grievances" to complain of!

The life of Sir Francis Head was extended considerably beyond the allotted term of three score years and ten. Only five years have elapsed since his death, at the ripe age of eighty-two, and no record of his career has as yet been given to the world. At the time of his first arrival in this Province he had barely reached what for him was middle age, having only just completed his forty-third year. His previous life had been one of unusual activity, and he had neither leisure nor inclination to familiarize himself with high affairs of State. He had already attained to some reputation as an author, having written several lively and interesting books, to which further reference will be made in the course of the present sketch. He was descended from an ancient and honourable family. During the early days of the Restoration one Fernando Mendez, a learned Portuguese physician, took up his abode in London, where he rose to eminence in his profession, and was installed as one of the physicians in ordinary to King Charles II. He married an English lady, and upon his death, towards the close of the century, was succeeded by his son Moses Mendez, who was an Englishman in everything but his name. In process of time the son became as English in the latter particular as he was in everything else, for he also married an English wife, and thenceforth assumed her name instead of conferring his foreign patronymic upon her. This lady was Anna Gabriella Head, second daughter and co-heiress of a clerical baronet, the Reverend Francis Head, of the Hermitage, near the quaint old city of Rochester, in the county of Kent. Upon his marriage, Moses Mendez became Moses Head. To him succeeded his eldest son, James Roper Head, who married Miss Frances Anne Burges, daughter of Mr. George Burges, of Bath, and granddaughter maternally of James, thirteenth Lord Somerville, in the peerage of Scotland. By this lady James Roper Head had five sons, the fourth of whom, christened Francis Bond, is the subject of this memoir.

He was born on the 1st of January, 1793, at the Hermitage, where his early years were passed. He was educated at the Military Academy at Woolwich, and obtained his first commission in the Royal Engineers in 1811. He saw some active service in Spain, and was present at Quatre Bras and Waterloo. In June, 1816, he married Miss Julia Valenza Somerville (daughter of the Hon. Hugh Somerville), who still lives in the memory of a few of the oldest inhabitants of Toronto. In 1825 he was a Captain in a corps of Engineers on duty at Edinburgh, and while there it was proposed to him to go out to South America in charge of an association then lately formed for the working of some gold and silver mines in the provinces of Rio de la Plata. It was the first year in which such speculations were rife, and it was probably with high hopes and expectations that he set sail with his party from Falmouth. Arriving in due course of time at Buenos Ayres, accompanied by a surveyor, an assayer, and several miners from Cornwall, he lost no time in procuring the necessary means of conveyance, and pushed on to the gold mines of San Luis, and thence to the silver mines of Upsallata, beyond Mendoza, about one thousand miles from Buenos Ayres. Leaving his [Pg 171]party at Mendoza, at the foot of the Andes, he returned on horseback across the Pampas to Buenos Ayres by himself, performing the distance in eight days. Letters which he found awaiting him at Buenos Ayres made it necessary that he should go immediately to Chili. He accordingly again crossed the Pampas, and gathering his party at Mendoza, led them across the Andes to Santiago, whence they proceeded in various directions to "prospect" the country and inspect the mines, travelling over twelve hundred miles. When he had concluded his report on the several mines of which he was in quest, the party recrossed the Andes, and Captain Head again rode across the Pampas to Buenos Ayres, leaving the rest of his companions to follow at their leisure. On their arrival he dismissed some of his miners and brought the rest back with him to England. In this rapid manner he traversed about six thousand miles, living meanwhile on dried beef and water, and sleeping upon the ground, on horseback, or any other way that he could. On his return home he published a narrative of his South American adventures, under the title of "Rough Notes taken during some rapid journeys across the Pampas and among the Andes." This lively and graphic narrative has far more of interest than an ordinary novel, and was eagerly devoured by all classes of readers. The rapidity with which he had scoured across the Pampas gained for him the sobriquet of "Galloping Head"—a name by which he is often referred to in the current literature of those days. From the fact that in 1827 he published a "Report on the failure of the Rio Plata Mining Association," it may be inferred that the chief success of the expedition lay in the acquisition of literary fame for its leader, and that the wealth of the mines, if any, was left for others to gain. At the end of the year 1828 he obtained his majority, and retired from the military service on half-pay. In 1830 he came once more before the English public as an author, with "The Life of Bruce, the Abyssinian Traveller," which appeared in the "Family Library." This he followed up in 1833 by an amusing volume, just suited for the pocket of Rhine travellers, under the title of "Bubbles from the Brunnen of Nassau, by an Old Man." During the next year (1834) he was appointed an Assistant Poor Law Commissioner for one of the Kentish districts, at a salary of £500 per annum. He seems to have devoted himself to the duties of this position with a good deal of assiduity, and to have brought about several useful and much-needed reforms. The office of a Poor Law Commissioner, indeed, was one for which he was admirably fitted. There were no broad questions of policy to be considered, and there were innumerable little details with which such minds as his love to occupy themselves. True, there were many grievances to be redressed, but the experience of several generations had fully proved them to be grievances. They were of such a nature that all the philanthropists of that age were agreed as to the just method of dealing with them. Major Head's time was fully taken up with his duties, in the discharge of which he gave abundant satisfaction. He found himself in a most congenial and by no means an undignified position. Writing on this subject five years later he says:—"Never had I been engaged in a service the duties of which so completely engrossed my mind. Rightly or wrongly it now matters not, I fancied that, against prejudices and clamour I should eventually succeed in the noblest, and to my mind the most interesting, of all services, that of reviving the character and condition of the English labourer; and as, notwithstanding the unpopularity of the new Act, I had, thanks to the magistrates, yeomanry, and farmers of the county of Kent, carried it into effect by acclamation, the pleasure as well as the interest of the task was daily [Pg 172]increasing." It was while he was thus occupied that, towards the close of 1835, he received from Lord Glenelg, then Secretary of State for the Colonies, the offer of the Lieutenant-Governorship of Upper Canada as successor to General Sir John Colborne afterwards Lord Seaton. How such an extraordinary offer came to be made is shrouded in mystery, and is one of those official secrets which will probably never be disclosed. It was an insoluble riddle to the Major himself, and has since puzzled many wiser heads than his. Whispers have been heard to the effect that the offer was due to an official mistake, and that the person for whom the appointment was intended was his kinsman, afterwards Sir Edmund Walker Head, Governor-General of Canada. It is said that at a meeting of Cabinet Ministers the question was asked, "Who shall we send out as Lieutenant-Governor to conciliate the discontented inhabitants of Upper Canada?" To this question it is said some one replied, "You cannot do better than send out young Head"—the person meant being Edmund Walker Head. Lord Glenelg being slightly acquainted with Major Head, the Poor Law Commissioner, and believing him to be the person meant, acted on the suggestion, and the mistake was never discovered until after the offer had been made to the gallant Major. Such is the story, for the truth of which the historian cannot vouch. If true, it certainly proves that high appointments are sometimes made with culpable want of care. The only thing certain about the whole affair is that the appointment was actually offered to, and after mature deliberation accepted by the Major, who has told the story in so picturesque and inimitable a fashion that we extract the account of it from his "Narrative." Thus it runs:—"It had blown almost a hurricane from the S.S.W. The sheep in Romney Marsh had huddled together in groups—the cattle, afraid to feed, were still standing with their tails to the storm—I had been all day immured in New Romney with the Board of Guardians of the March Union; and though several times my horse had been nearly blown off the road, I had managed to return to Cranbrook; and with my head full of the unions, parishes, magistrates, guardians, relieving officers, and paupers of the county of Kent, like Abou Hassan, I had retired to rest, and for several hours had been fast asleep, when, about midnight, I was suddenly awakened by the servant of my lodging, who, with a letter in one hand, and in the other a tallow candle, illuminating an honest countenance, not altogether free from alarm, hurriedly informed me that a King's messenger had come after me! What could possibly be the matter in the workhouse of this busy world I could not clearly conceive. However, sitting up in my bed, I opened the letter, which, to my utter astonishment, was from the Secretary of State for the Colonies, expressing a wish that I should accept the government of Upper Canada, and that, if possible, I would call upon him with my answer at half-past eight the following morning, as at nine o'clock he was to set out for Brighton, to see the King. As I was totally unconnected with every member of the Government, and had never had the honour even of seeing Lord Glenelg in my life, I was altogether at a loss to conceive why this appointment should have been offered to me. However, as it appeared there was no time to be lost, I immediately got up, and returning to London in the chaise of the King's messenger who had brought me the communication, I reached my own house in Kensington at six o'clock, and having consulted with my family, whose opinions on the subject of the appointment I found completely coincided with my own, I waited upon Lord Glenelg, when I most respectfully and very gratefully declined the appointment. To this determination Lord Glenelg very obligingly replied, by repeating to me [Pg 173]his wish to be enabled to submit my name to the King for so important and difficult a trust; he begged me to reconsider the subject; and in order that I might be enabled to do so, he requested me to go and converse with his under-secretary, Mr. Stephen, who, his Lordship said, would give me every information on the subject."

The result of the interview with Mr. Stephen was the acceptance of the position by Major Head. A letter was forthwith despatched to Brighton to Lord Glenelg, who on receiving it submitted Major Head's answer to the King, who approved of the appointment, and the business was complete.

Complications arose at the very outset of his official career. It was intimated to him that it was necessary to exercise a most rigid economy; that his salary would be £500 lower than that of his predecessor, and that he was expected to dispense with the services of an aide-de-camp. He was further informed that his half-pay as a major in the army would be discontinued. "With respect to these arrangements," says the "Narrative," "I at once very distinctly observed to Mr. Stephen that although it was, of course, utterly impossible for me even to imagine what would be the official expenses to which I should be subjected, yet that, as so many Governors, one after another, were supposed to have failed in their missions, and as the difficulties which had overcome them were declared to have increased rather than to have diminished, I considered it was unreasonable as well as imprudent in the Government to ask me to encounter them with diminished means. I told Mr. Stephen that to go out without an aide-de-camp to a disturbed colony, where the Governor had always been seen to have one, would in my opinion be impolitic; and I added that, as I was altogether below my predecessors (Sir Peregrine Maitland and Sir John Colborne) in military rank, and that as I was to be divested of the command of the troops, I thought the civil elevation of a baronetcy ought to be conferred upon me." It will thus be seen that the Major was by no means so greatly overpowered by the new and unexpected dignity which had been conferred upon him as to render him backward in asserting himself. Mr. Stephen was, on the whole, disposed to agree with him in the matter of the aide-de-camp, and as to official expenses. With regard to the baronetcy, Mr. Stephen kept his countenance as well as he could, and temporised. There were, he said, so many applications for the distinction, that he thought Lord Melbourne might feel that he would create jealousy by a single appointment. When the Major urged his claim personally upon Lord Glenelg, that nobleman quietly promised to give the project his careful consideration, and added: "There is much truth in what you say." And then Major Head went down to Brighton and was presented to the King, upon whom he personally urged his claims. The result of it all was that the aide-de-camp was conceded, and that the project of the baronetcy was "taken into consideration" for the present. There were subsequent difficulties about the payment of the aide-de-camp's salary. At last everything was arranged, and the new Lieutenant-Governor, with his suite, set sail from Liverpool. The journey to his seat of Government was made by way of New York, and he improved the time during the ocean voyage by a careful study of a certain blue book containing a report of the "Committee of Grievances." This blue book, and the instructions addressed to himself from the Colonial Office, contained the basis of all his knowledge of Canadian affairs. He reached his destination—namely, Toronto—on the 23rd of January, 1836. Commenting, in his "Narrative," on his "simplicity of mind, ill-naturedly called ignorance," at this time, he says:—"With Mr. Mackenzie's [Pg 174]heavy book of lamentations in my portmanteau, and with my remedial instructions in my writing-case, I considered myself as a political physician, who, whether regularly educated or not, was about to effect a surprising cure; for, as I never doubted for a moment either the existence of the 533 pages of grievances, or that I would mercilessly destroy them root and branch, I felt perfectly confident that I should very soon be able proudly to report that the grievances of Upper Canada were defunct—in fact, that I had veni-ed, vidi-ed, and vici-ed them. As, however, I was no more connected with human politics than the horses that were drawing me—as I had never joined any political party, had never attended a political discussion, and had never even voted at an election, or taken any part in one—it was with no little surprise that, as I drove into Toronto, I observed the walls placarded in large letters which designated me as 'Sir Francis Head, a tried Reformer.'" The foregoing remarks on the "Grievances" are themselves sufficient to show what an inadequate grasp Sir Francis had of the situation. He seems to have really believed—in so far as he believed anything about the matter—that the violent and bitter animosities which had been accumulating for many years could be summarily disposed of by the magnetism of his personal presence, and with a single wave of his hand. With his book of grievances and his instructions he conceived himself to be fully prepared to argue down all opposition. He fancied that he was to be another Caesar, and that his first despatch would announce that he had, in his own language, "veni-ed, vidi-ed, and vici-ed" all difficulties. In extenuation of this opinion, Sir Francis in after days pleaded that it was formed in ignorance of the exact circumstances of the case. But it also indicated something more than this. It indicated that his mind was of too petty an order to deal with serious and complicated questions relating to public affairs. The manifold grievances of the people of Canada were not to be allayed in the same brusque, ad captandum fashion as the differences of a few parishes with regard to the manner of parochial assessment for the relief of the poor. The country laboured under evils which required a broad and statesmanlike treatment. There were both municipal and fiscal grievances without number, and the Crown nominees in the Legislative and Executive Councils practically ruled the land, utterly regardless of the wishes of the people as expressed in the House of Assembly. The Reform Party, as a body, had for years been doing their utmost to remove, by constitutional and legislative means, the many disabilities under which the people laboured. The extreme Radical section—the head and front of which was Mr. Mackenzie—had long clamoured loudly for redress. Mr. Mackenzie himself, several years before Sir Francis Head's appointment, had gone over to Great Britain with his famous "Petition of Grievances," which had the effect of convincing the officials in Downing Street that Upper Canadians had really many just grounds of complaint. As to finding a proper remedy, that was reserved for Lord Durham. Meanwhile a policy of conciliation was resolved upon. In other words, Canadian affairs were shelved from time to time; and at last the crowning folly was committed of sending over this "tried Reformer" as Lieutenant-Governor.

Sir Francis had not been many days at his seat of Government before he had a private interview with Mr. Marshall Spring Bidwell, Speaker of the House of Assembly, from whom he learned for the first time that the Grievance Report, which he had so laboriously studied during his voyage across the Atlantic did not contain a complete record of the grievances of the Canadian people. During a subsequent interview [Pg 175]with Mr. Mackenzie himself he received an abundant confirmation of this fact. He accordingly jumped to the conclusion that the Grievance Petition was a mere pretext, and that there was a fixed determination on the part of the radicals to rebel. That this conclusion was erroneous there can now be no doubt whatever. A large majority, even of the most ultra-reformers, were loyal subjects of Great Britain, and had no sympathy with any projects of rebellion. Indeed, it is doubtful whether such projects were at that time seriously entertained by any one in the Upper Province. It seems more than probable that Mr. Mackenzie himself might easily have been conciliated, and that a wise and prudent Governor might have averted the worst of the disastrous consequences that followed. Sir Francis, however, though he for some time kept his convictions to himself, was fully persuaded that the whole population were tinged with disloyalty, and this impression had an important bearing upon his future policy. This "tried Reformer" at once passed, in the language of a Canadian historian, "from presumed Whiggism into old-fashioned Toryism," though he "shrank from the indecency of at once running counter to every principle of his appointment, and allying himself with the remnant of the Family Compact." He accordingly made a show of moderation, and of an apparent desire to show respect to the opinions of the majority in the Assembly. Three places were vacant in the Executive Council, owing to three of the old members having recently been dismissed. The vacancies were offered respectively to Robert Baldwin, John Rolph, and John Henry Dunn, all of whom stood high in the confidence and esteem of the Reform Party throughout the country. A conference followed between Mr. Baldwin and Sir Francis, during which the position of affairs was pretty fully discussed. The nature of the discussion has already been given in this work, in the sketch of Mr. Baldwin's life. Its result was that Mr. Baldwin and the two other gentlemen above named accepted office. They were not long in discovering that the Governor had merely induced them to accept office for his own purposes, and that he had no intention of permitting them to have any voice in the direction of public affairs. They were kept in total ignorance of the Governor's policy, and their functions were restricted to insignificant matters of detail. Hangers-on of the Family Compact were appointed to offices by Sir Francis without any conference with the Reform members of the Council. He turned a deaf ear to all their remonstrances, and they accordingly resigned their seats in the Council. The vacancies were filled by more complaisant members, in whom the House of Assembly could place no reliance. A vote of want of confidence was passed, and the supplies were stopped. Then followed the dissolution of Parliament, a new general election, and a packed House of Assembly. Nearly all the prominent members of the Reform Party were defeated at the polls, and thus excluded from the House. To bring about this state of things the grossest corruption was practised, and the most outrageous misrepresentations were made. Lord Durham's Report gives a faithful picture of the false issues raised, and of the state of political feeling in the Province at the time. The contest, which appeared to be thus commenced on the question of the responsibility of the Executive Council, was really decided on very different grounds. Sir F. Head, who appears to have thought that the maintenance of the connection with Britain depended upon his triumph over the majority of the Assembly, embarked in the contest with a determination to use every influence in his power in order to bring it to a successful issue. He succeeded, in fact, in putting [Pg 176]the issue in such a light before the Province that a great portion of the people really imagined that they were called upon to decide the question of separation by their votes. The dissolution, on which he ventured when he thought the public mind sufficiently ripe, completely answered his expectations. The British, in particular, were roused by the proclaimed danger to the connection with the Mother Country; they were indignant at some portions of the speeches of certain members of the late majority which seemed to mark a determined preference to American over British institutions. They were irritated by indications of hostility to British immigration which they saw, or fancied they saw, in some recent proceedings of the Assembly. Above all, not only they, but a great many others, had marked with envy the stupendous public works which were at that period producing their effect in the almost marvellous growth of the wealth of the neighbouring State of New York; and they reproached the Assembly with what they considered an unwise economy, in preventing the undertaking or completion of similar works, that might, as they fancied, have produced a similar development of the resources of Upper Canada. The general support of the British determined the elections in favour of the Government; and though very large and close minorities, which in many cases supported the defeated candidates, marked the force which the Reformers could bring into the field, even in spite of the disadvantages under which they laboured from the momentary prejudices against them, and the unusual manner in which the Crown, by its representative, appeared to make itself a party in an electioneering contest, the result was the return of a very large majority hostile in politics to that of the late Assembly. Intelligence of Sir Francis's doings, however, soon reached the Colonial Office in London. The officials there, as we have seen, were not very well informed as to Canadian affairs, but they were wise enough to see the gross impropriety of their emissary's proceedings. Their remonstrances, at first very mild, by degrees became emphatic, and Sir Francis, in a despatch to Lord Glenelg, dated 1st June, expressed his willingness to resign office. The Colonial Secretary, however, was at a loss to find any one to supply his place, and did not act upon the suggestion. Time passed by, and Sir Francis continued to pursue what he was pleased to call his "policy." The breach between himself and the Canadian people, as well as between himself and the Colonial Office, gradually became wider and wider. His principal differences with the Colonial Office, apart from his general misgovernment, arose out of his positive refusal to obey the instructions of the Colonial Secretary with reference to Mr. Bidwell and Mr. George Ridout. Mr. Bidwell was a lawyer in high standing, who, notwithstanding his strong political opinions, enjoyed the respect and esteem of every one. A vacancy occurred on the Judicial Bench, and Lord Glenelg instructed Sir Francis to elevate Mr. Bidwell to the vacant judgeship. Mr. Ridout had been Judge of the District Court of Niagara, but had been improperly dismissed from that post by Sir Francis. Notwithstanding the most emphatic instructions from the Colonial Office, the Governor positively declined either to elevate Mr. Bidwell to the Bench or to reinstate Mr. Ridout in the position of which he had been unjustly deprived. About this time the Executive Council also proved refractory, and Sir Francis found himself without support in the country. The troops had been withdrawn from Toronto by Sir John Colborne in order to assist in opposing Mr. Papineau's movements in the Lower Province. Sir John offered to leave two companies as a guard, but Sir Francis declined the offer, [Pg 177]and professed unbounded confidence in the "moral power" which he was able to exercise. His excuse, when he suddenly found himself attacked by armed rebels, was that he had all along foreseen and desired the insurrection, and even pretended unconsciousness, in order to tempt an outbreak. To avoid the imputation of negligence, Sir Francis's vanity sought refuge in one of the most detestable practices of the most unscrupulous tyranny. He endeavoured to load himself with the crime of having trepanned a number of ignorant and heated political opponents into the guilt and peril of treason; of having given facilities to crime, in order that he might find a pretext for punishment. But the simple fact is that Sir Francis, misled by his own vanity and carelessness, and the representations of the Family Compact, either totally disbelieved in the existence of danger, or thought that the magic of his rhodomontade would be as successful in a civil war as in an election. Accordingly he turned a deaf ear to all prudent overtures, and not only took no precaution but tried to prevent others from taking any. If Mr. Mackenzie and his adherents had been properly organized they might have invested Toronto without any difficulty whatever—though, of course, they could not have retained permanent possession of it. The withdrawal of the troops gave an impetus to the insurrection, and the drilling and other preparations for a rising produced a pretty general alarm throughout the Province. This was more especially the case in and near Toronto, where, in consequence of the strongest pressure, the Governor, with apparent reluctance, gave directions for the calling out of the militia. Even up to the beginning of December, 1837, he professed the utmost scepticism as to the impending outbreak, and did not believe such a small matter to be worthy of his august attention. Meanwhile Mackenzie had matured his plans for a descent on Toronto on the 7th of December. He scoured through the country hither and thither, making arrangements which he believed would insure the success of his project. The history of that project falls more properly within the life of Mr. Mackenzie, where it is given in sufficient detail. Every Canadian knows how, through Sir Francis's hare-brained supineness, Toronto came very near being captured by the insurgents. The rebellion was crushed, not by him, nor even by his directions, but by the promptitude and efficiency of others. At its close he had scarcely a friend left in Upper Canada. He once more tendered his resignation, which was accepted, and Sir George Arthur was appointed as his successor. Early in the following spring Sir Francis bade adieu to the country which had been the scene of his disastrous administration, and in due course reached London. In consideration of his "great public services" he was created a baronet, and thenceforward retired into private life. Towards the close of 1839 he published the "Narrative" from which we have made several extracts in the course of this sketch. It was lauded to the skies by the Quarterly and other Conservative organs, but it was diametrically opposed to Lord Durham's version of affairs in Canada, and soon came to be rated at its true value.

With the close of his Canadian administration the public career of Sir Francis Head may be said to have come to an end. He devoted the greater part of his subsequent life to literary pursuits, and became a frequent contributor to the Quarterly and other periodicals. For many years before his death he enjoyed an annual pension of £100, "for his services in the cause of literature." One of the best known of his works is "The Emigrant," published several years after his return to England. Like most of his writings, it is sprightly and entertaining, but is too much mixed up with his own [Pg 178]experiences to be safely trusted. In 1850 he published his "Stokers and Pokers," which had originally appeared in the Quarterly Review. This is a clever and effective, though hasty and somewhat careless, sketch of the difficulties attendant on the construction, maintenance, and working of a great railway, with illustrations from scenes of "life along the line." In the same year, just after the elevation of Louis Napoleon to the Presidency of the French Republic, and when vague rumours of a possible invasion of Britain were abroad, he gave to the world a pamphlet on "The Defenceless State of Great Britain," a work which, with a little that was true, mixed up much that was false and erroneous, and to say the least, was so exaggerated that some critics professed to doubt whether it should be regarded as serious or imaginative. In May, 1851, after a visit to the land of his alarms, he published an interesting and amusing description of the places, scenes, and modes of life in Paris, under the title of "A Faggot of French Sticks," which soon became as great a favourite as his "Bubbles from the Brunnen," already mentioned, had been. In 1852, after a visit to Dublin, Galway, and other places in a rapid tour through Ireland, he published his "Fortnight in Ireland," which showed, as might have been expected, that he possessed a very slight knowledge of his subject, and that it was less easy to scamper profitably across Irish bogs than across South American mountains. Besides the works already mentioned, Sir Francis was the author of a pamphlet entitled "Practical Hints against the Theory of Emigration" (1828), a work which was scarcely up to the thought of the time when it was written, and which is now quite out of date; another on "English Charity" (1853); "An Address to the House of Lords against the Union of the Canadas," commenting in no mild manner on the "improper means" by which the consent of the Upper Province had been obtained to that measure (1840); "High Ways and Dry Ways" (1849); "Comments on Mr. A. W. Kinglake's 'History of the Expedition to the Crimea'" (1863); two volumes of "Descriptive Essays contributed to the Quarterly Review" (1857); "The Royal Engineer" (1869); "The Horse and his Rider" (1860); and "Sketch of the Life of Field Marshal Sir John Burgoyne" (1872). Some of the statements made in his "Stokers and Pokers" respecting the London and North-western Railway, and more particularly with relation to the Britannia and Conway Tubular Bridges, were controverted by Mr. Thomas Fairbairn, soon after their first appearance in print.

Sir Francis Head, in addition to his English title, was a Knight of the Prussian Military Order of Merit. He was nominated a Knight Commander of the Royal Hanoverian Guelphic Order in 1835; and was sworn a member of Her Majesty's Privy Council in 1867. Upon his death, on the 20th of July, 1875, he was succeeded by his eldest son, Mr. Francis Somerville Head, who is now second Baronet, and who was formerly an officer in the Indian Civil Service. He is a magistrate for the county of Surrey. The late Baronet's other sons are Mr. Henry Bond Head, late captain in the 2nd Dragoon Guards, and the Rev. George Head, rector of Aston Somerville, Gloucestershire. His daughter Julia Maria, married in 1843 Mr. Robert Williamson Ramsay, formerly captain in the 42nd Foot. The family seat is at Duppas Hall, Croydon, a few miles south of London.

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Mr. Justice Strong is a son of the Rev. Samuel T. Strong, formerly Rector of Bytown, Upper Canada, and now of Brockton, near Toronto. He was born in Dorsetshire, England, in 1825, but accompanied his family to this country in his early boyhood, and was for a short time resident at Kingston. Upon his father's appointment to the Rectory of Bytown the family removed thither. Young Samuel was educated at various public and private schools in Bytown—now called Ottawa—and when about seventeen years of age became a student at law in the office of Mr. Augustus Keefer, who was then one of the leading practitioners in that part of Canada. He completed his legal studies in Toronto, in the office of the late Mr. Henry Eccles, one of the most distinguished counsel that ever practised at the Canadian Bar. In 1848 he was admitted to practise as an attorney and solicitor, and in Hilary Term, 1849, he was called to the Bar. He began practice in Toronto, and from the outset devoted himself chiefly to the Equity Branch of his profession. He had not been long at the Equity Bar before he occupied a place in the front rank with Oliver Mowat, John Roaf, and others. He displayed extraordinary quickness in grasping the salient points of the cases which came within his purview, and in this respect has probably never had an equal either at the Bar or on the Bench of this country. After he had been some time in practice he formed a partnership with Mr. William Marshall Matheson, the present Master and Deputy Registrar in Chancery at Ottawa, under the style of Strong & Matheson. Mr. Thomas Wardlaw Taylor, the present Master in Ordinary of the Court of Chancery, was subsequently admitted to the firm, the style of which thenceforward became Strong, Matheson & Taylor. This firm existed for some years, and did a very large and successful Equity business until 1858, when it was dissolved. Mr. Strong subsequently practised alone for several years, after which he formed a partnership with Mr. John Hoskin, of Toronto. Upon Mr. Hoskin's withdrawal from the firm, and for some years prior to his elevation to the Bench, Mr. Strong was without a partner.

In 1856 he was appointed a member of the Commission for the consolidation of the Statutes of Canada and of Upper Canada, and took part in the labours of that Commission until the task was fully accomplished towards the close of 1859. In 1860 he was elected a Bencher of the Law Society of Upper Canada; and in 1863 he received a silk gown. On the 27th of December, 1869, he was appointed to the Bench of the Court of Chancery, as one of its Vice-Chancellors. In 1871 he became a member of the Commission to inquire into the constitution and jurisdiction of the courts, with a view to the effecting of important legal reforms, [Pg 180]and a possible fusion of the Law and Equity Courts. Finally, on the 8th of October, 1875, he was appointed one of the Justices of the Supreme Court of the Dominion, which necessitated his removal from Toronto to Ottawa.

Mr. Strong has never taken any decided part in politics, and his honours have been won by his professional attainments alone. Though by no means a recluse or a bookworm in his habits, his legal erudition is very great, and his memory for judicial decisions is almost miraculous. There is no keener intellect on the Canadian Bench, and great deference is paid to his judgments, not only by the profession at large, but by his brethren on the Bench of the Supreme Court. He is specially distinguished for his knowledge of Law as a science, and of the principles of Jurisprudence generally. His faculty for legal expression and exact phraseology is most conspicuous, and by contrast to the loose and popular modes of pleading now prevalent the younger practitioners can find excellent models in those drawn by Mr. Strong, which well illustrate his learning and logical acumen, and the influence of that study and training which has produced so many distinguished judges.

Alexander Tilloch Galt
Alexander Tilloch Galt
Lith. by Rolph Smith Ltd Toronto from Photo by W. J. Topley, Ottawa

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Sir Alexander Galt is the youngest son of the late Mr. John Galt, a gentleman who once enjoyed a fair share of popularity as an author, but who is better known in this country from his connection with the Canada Company. As the scheme of the present work does not include a separate sketch of the life of this gentleman, and as his career is not without interest to Canadians, a few particulars respecting it may as well be inserted here. He was born at Irvine, in Ayrshire, Scotland, on the 2nd of May, 1799. He was originally intended for a mercantile career, but did not devote much time to commercial pursuits, which he abandoned in order to occupy himself with literature. He repaired to London, and published several poems. His literary pursuits, however, were checked by ill health, and he started on a prolonged tour through Southern Europe, in the course of which he formed a friendship with Lord Byron, of whom he subsequently wrote a biography. After his return to England he again embarked in literature, and published an account of his travels, as well as several novels, which were received with much favour. He was a man of varied accomplishments, and shone in London society at a time when that society was exceptionally brilliant. He also acquired a high reputation for shrewdness and worldly wisdom, which circumstance eventually led to his removal to Canada. In the year 1823, a company called "The Canada Land Company," chiefly composed of members of the London Stock Exchange, was projected in England. The design of its projectors was to buy up large tracts of wild land in Canada, and to dispose of the same in small lots to emigrants, or to any one else who might think proper to purchase. From its first inception it was a mere commercial enterprise, and whatever opinion may be entertained as to its having retarded the settlement of this country, its operations have undoubtedly been very profitable to the stockholders. Mr. Galt was an active promoter of this Company, and indeed was chiefly instrumental in originating it. One of the first proceedings of the gentlemen composing it was to appoint commissioners to go out to Canada in order to ascertain from personal inspection what lands it would be most advantageous to purchase. Mr. Galt was one of the commissioners appointed for this purpose, and in the spring of the year 1824 he and his coadjutors sailed for America. They travelled over a great part of the Upper Province, and returned to England the same year. They presented a report embodying the results of their observation, and recommending the purchase of various large tracts in different parts of the Province. After all preliminaries had been arranged, a charter was granted to the Company, and Mr. Galt was again despatched to Canada to negotiate [Pg 182]on its behalf. He entered into contracts whereby the Company became possessed of about two and a half millions of acres of land in Upper Canada. One of the earliest of his negotiations consisted of the purchase of the entire township of Guelph, containing about forty thousand acres, of which he directed an immediate survey. In the course of his travels through the township in the winter of 1826-7, Mr. Galt fixed upon the present site of Guelph as a suitable spot for the erection of a town. He conceived that the location possessed many advantages, and having engaged a number of "slashers" he directed them to repair to the appointed place on the 23rd of April following. His behests were obeyed, and on the 23rd of April, 1827, the town of Guelph was "inaugurated" with imposing ceremonies by Mr. Galt, Dr. Dunlop, and a Mr. Prior, all of whom were in the service of the Company. Mr. Galt also took part in the acquisition and settlement of the Huron Tract. Soon afterwards serious difficulties began to arise between him and the English directors. Though Mr. Galt was eminently successful in founding settlements, and partially so in his efforts to induce a tide of emigration to Canada, these results were not brought about without a large expenditure of money. The outlay was not only prodigiously in excess of what had been contemplated by the directors, but there can be no doubt that it was much more lavish than was either necessary or expedient for the Company's interests. Mr. Galt was not a practical man, and was in many instances subjected by his agents to gross imposition. He entertained enthusiastic theories on the subject of emigration, with which the directors had but little sympathy. The first consideration with them was large dividends; and it soon became apparent that large dividends were not to be looked for while Mr. Galt was permitted to direct the operations of the Company in Canada. The differences became wider and wider, until there was no hope of reconciliation; and in the summer of 1828 a Mr. Smith was sent over from England to look after the expenditure. Within a few months thereafter Mr. Galt withdrew from the service of the Company and returned to England. He was at this time almost entirely without means, and was compelled to pass through the Insolvent Debtors' Court, and to devote himself to literature as a means of earning his daily bread. For about ten years afterwards he continued to pour out volume after volume of fiction, together with one or two works of a more solid character. A certain measure of success attended most of his publications, but they may now be said to have had their day. After sustaining repeated attacks of paralysis, he died at Greenock, in Scotland, on the 11th of April, 1839. Personally, he was a man of high character and of a most pleasant and genial disposition. He was held in high esteem by a wide circle of friends on both sides of the Atlantic. Several of his sons have figured conspicuously in Canadian affairs. Sir Alexander T. Galt's career is outlined in the present sketch. Thomas, another son, was for more than a quarter of a century one of the foremost lawyers at the Upper Canadian Bar, and now occupies a seat on the Bench. An account of his life will also be found in this work. John, the eldest son, was for many years Registrar of the county of Huron, and resided at Goderich down to the time of his death a few years since.

Alexander, the subject of this sketch, was born at his father's house, in Chelsea, London, England, on the 6th of September, 1817. He received his education at various English schools, and is said to have been somewhat of a favourite with the literary lions who occasionally assembled at his father's house. Like his father, he early manifested a fondness for literary pursuits, and is said to have contributed to magazines [Pg 183]when he was only fourteen years of age. When he was sixteen, a situation was procured for him in the employ of the British America Land Company, which rendered it necessary that he should take up his abode on this side of the Atlantic. The Eastern Townships were the scene of some of the chief operations of the Company, and in 1835 young Alexander Galt settled down at Sherbrooke. He displayed much ability as an accountant, as well as a general aptitude for business, and steadily rose in the service until 1844, when he attained the position of Chief Commissioner. He occupied that position for twelve years, during which his financial abilities were signally displayed, to the great benefit of the Company. At the time of his appointment the Company's affairs were in a state of great confusion, and the enterprise was believed to be upon the verge of insolvency. In the course of a few years Mr. Galt restored order where all had been disorder, and placed the affairs of the Company upon a sound and prosperous footing.

In 1849 he for the first time entered Parliament, as Member for the county of Sherbrooke. As a politician he has always been remarkable for the moderation of his views, and has had little sympathy with the violent party measures of either side. From the outset he has always professed Liberal opinions, though, upon entering Parliament he opposed the Liberal Administration of Messrs. Baldwin and Lafontaine, and voted against the Rebellion Losses Bill. He took part in the annexation movement of that troubled period, and was one of the signatories to the famous "Manifesto." Upon the removal of the seat of Government from Montreal to Toronto, consequent upon the destruction of the Parliament Buildings in the former city, Mr. Galt retired from public life, and returned to his duties in connection with the Land Company. He also engaged largely in the promotion of other public enterprises, more especially in the construction of railways, and became President of the St. Lawrence and Atlantic Railroad Company. In conjunction with the late Hon. John Young, he succeeded in extricating that enterprise from the many difficulties which nearly submerged it, and brought about its amalgamation with the Grand Trunk Line. He about the same time entered into partnership with Messrs. C. S. Gzowski, D. L. Macpherson and L. H. Holton, under the style of Gzowski & Co., and was a member of that firm during the construction of the Grand Trunk Railway westward from Toronto to Sarnia. In 1853 he again entered the political arena, and was returned to the Assembly for the town of Sherbrooke, which he thenceforward continued to represent in that Body until Confederation. He at once took a prominent part in the debates, and was recognized as a very high authority on all matters relating to finance, trade, and commerce generally. He opposed the Hincks-Morin Administration, and continued to support the succeeding Government under its various modifications until its fall in 1858. His support, however, was not unqualified, and on many public measures which seemed to him to require independence of action he voted without fear or favour. After the collapse of the short-lived Brown-Dorion Government, Sir Edmund Head applied to Mr. Galt to form a new Cabinet. Mr. Galt, however, is a Protestant, and, though he represented a Lower Canadian constituency, he was not regarded with enthusiasm by the French-Canadian element in the Legislature. His political views, moreover, were of too moderate a stamp to enable him to count upon enthusiastic support from either of the political parties in the country. He had no confidence in his power to form a Government which would receive public support, and declined to make the attempt; whereupon [Pg 184]the "Double-Shuffle" took place, and the Cartier-Macdonald Administration succeeded to power. In this Administration Mr. Galt accepted the post of Minister of Finance, as successor to Mr. Cayley, and from that time forward he was identified with the politics of his colleagues.

His tenure of office was no sinecure, for he succeeded to an embarrassed exchequer and a confused state of the public accounts. Extraordinary methods of raising money had been resorted to, and there was a discrepancy between the real and apparent expenditure of between three and four millions of dollars. An increase in the customs and excise duties was contemplated, and aroused a great deal of angry discussion, both within the walls of Parliament and elsewhere throughout the country. The cry for retrenchment in the public expenditure was both loud and persistent. Such being the state of affairs, it is not to be wondered at that the accession to office of a Minister of Finance who enjoyed the reputation of being a clear-headed man of business, and an adept in dealing with confused and complicated accounts; who was moderate in his politics, and whose personal integrity was untarnished, should have proved a great source of strength to the Administration. Mr. Galt entered upon his duties with a full determination that he would prove himself equal to the emergency. During the ensuing session an additional impost was added to the customs duties, and the decimal system of currency was introduced. The combined influence of the new tariff, an abundant harvest, and a restoration of public confidence, produced a visible effect. The Finance Minister was able to report a surplus. There was, however, a large increase in the public debt, owing, in great measure, to profuse expenditure in the construction of railways during the preceding ten years. To say that Mr. Galt's financial policy was an immediate and unmixed success would be to say that he was a greater financial genius than Colbert. Such a result could not have been accomplished by any Minister of Finance. The consequences of the recklessness and incompetence of many years could not be wiped out of existence at a moment's notice. His career as a Finance Minister, however, was highly honourable to him. A consolidation of the public debt was effected, and a Canadian loan was successfully negotiated in England. The collection and administration of the finances were reduced to system, and many important reforms were effected in the public service by his authority. In May, 1862, the Government sustained a defeat on the Militia Bill, and the members went into Opposition. During the two short Administrations which succeeded, Mr. Galt was not called upon to take any conspicuous part in public affairs; but upon the formation of the Taché-Macdonald Ministry in March, 1864, he again became Minister of Finance. Parties, however, were too easily balanced to admit of any Government's being secure, and before the existing one had been in office three months it experienced disaster through one of Mr. Galt's own acts. On the 14th of June, Mr. Dorion moved a resolution, as an amendment to the motion to go into Committee of Supply, censuring the Government for having advanced $100,000 from the public chest without the authority of Parliament for the redemption of bonds of a like amount of the City of Montreal, which bonds were redeemable by the Grand Trunk Railway Company. This resolution was carried by a majority of two, and the defeat of the Ministry was followed by the negotiations which led to the formation of the Coalition Government under the auspices whereof the scheme of Confederation was carried out.

Mr. Galt had long favoured the idea of a Federal Union of the Provinces, and six years before had accompanied Sir George [Pg 185]Cartier and the Hon. John Ross to England to urge the project upon the Imperial Government. In the negotiations which now ensued, and which finally resulted in the accomplishment of Confederation, he took a foremost part. He was a delegate to both the Charlottetown and Quebec Conferences in 1864, and to the London Conference in 1867, when the terms of Union were finally settled. In 1866 he repaired to Washington on behalf of the Canadian Government for the purpose of obtaining a renewal of the reciprocity treaty with the United States. The attempt failed, and not long afterwards Mr. Galt resigned his place in the Cabinet, owing to his dissatisfaction with the educational policy. He, however, proceeded to England during the following year, as we have seen, as a delegate from Lower Canada to the London Conference; and after Confederation had been brought about he accepted office as Minister of Finance in the first Dominion Government, under Sir John A. Macdonald as Premier. He presented himself for election to his old constituents in the town of Sherbrooke, which place he had represented in the Canadian Assembly for a continuous period of twenty-three years. He was once more returned, and represented the constituency in the House of Commons for five years. On the occasion of his accepting office at this time he was sworn of Her Majesty's Privy Council of Canada. He did not long retain his portfolio, and the reasons which induced him to resign it have never been made public, though they have given rise to much profitless speculation. He continued to sit in the House as a private member, untrammelled by any ties of party, and voted on all measures according to his personal estimation of their respective merits. On several occasions he criticized the policy of the Administration, more especially with respect to measures affecting the financial policy of the country, and on one occasion he moved a resolution condemning the increase of expenditure. He opposed Sir John A. Macdonald's mission to Washington in 1871, as a Joint High Commissioner, upon the ground that there should first be some expression of opinion as to the policy of Canada by the House of Commons. He subsequently voted in favour of the Government measure affirming the principle of the Treaty. He opposed the pledge to construct the Pacific Railway within ten years, but supported the Government Railway Bill a year afterwards. It would be unfair, however, for any one unacquainted with all the motives by which he was actuated to describe his Parliamentary career as vacillating. The conditions were undergoing constant changes, and it might have been quite consistent with mental stability for a man to oppose in December a measure which he had supported in the previous February.

In 1869 Mr. Galt was created a Knight Commander of the Order of St. Michael and St. George. At the general elections of 1872 he declined to allow himself to be nominated for reëlection, and retired to private life. Three years later some of the Montreal newspapers referred to him as a probable candidate for the representation of that city, which had been his home for many years previously. These references brought out a letter addressed by Sir Alexander to the Hon. James Ferrier, expressing his views upon some of the leading topics of the day. In this letter he expressed much anxiety at the increase of the financial obligations of the Dominion, and suggested an abandonment, by arrangement with British Columbia, of the Pacific Railway, and the adoption of a hostile or retaliatory tariff towards the United States. He has not since reëntered political life, unless his recent appointment is to be so characterized. In 1875 he began to emulate, in this country, the example set by Mr. Gladstone in England, and published a pamphlet on the [Pg 186]alleged encroachments of Ultramontanism. Both in Montreal and in Toronto he delivered public speeches to the same purport, and thereby rendered himself not a little obnoxious to the Roman Catholic hierarchy.

The latest important event in Sir Alexander Galt's career was his appointment, a few months ago, to the position of High Commissioner from the Dominion to Great Britain, with official residence in London. The nature of his duties do not seem to be very clearly defined, but they are presumably partly financial, partly diplomatic, and partly connected with the promotion of emigration from Great Britain to Canada. The appointment has evoked a good deal of criticism on the part of the Opposition press, and the creation of the office of High Commissioner has been pronounced to have been unnecessary. Into the discussion of that question it is not our purpose to enter; but it is on all hands admitted that if there is to be such an office, no more eligible candidate could be found than the subject of this sketch. The leading organ of the Opposition, in referring to the subject some time since, indulged in some remarks which are worth quoting, as reflecting the opinion of those who entertain the least favourable opinion of Sir Alexander's qualities. "The hope that Sir Alexander Galt will perform the duties of Minister to England more efficiently than any other eligible Canadian politician is founded on his unlikeness to most or all of our prominent public men. Those who believe that a facile disposition fits a man to be a diplomatist, and conceive a diplomatist's to be the highest type of character, may properly say that Sir Alexander is almost a great man. From nature he received a mind which forbade him to belong to any party or to hold fast by any principles. Not that he can be called unprincipled in the usual acceptation of the term. He is in fact a man of opinions formed with reference solely to what he considers expedient.... His manners are more than agreeable—they are charming; familiar without inducing to familiarity, dignified without a trace of restraint. His qualities are indeed such that Canada may be proud of her representative. In fact his mind fits him to be a social success, inasmuch as he always has plenty of ideas big and little, none of which he entertains long enough to make them obtrusive. What he agrees to from courtesy to-day he may hold by reasoning to-morrow, and drop the day after for the pleasure of making a change. In business we cannot imagine him doing anything which he believes to be evil, but he has remarkable facility in assuring himself that nothing is wrong which appears to be expedient." There is nothing to be added on this subject, except to say that Sir Alexander has taken up his residence in the British capital, and that he is already a prominent and popular member of London society.

Sir Alexander has been connected with numerous important public undertakings in addition to those already mentioned, and was for many years Lieutenant-Colonel of the Sherbrooke Reserve Militia. He has been twice married—first to Elliott, daughter of the late Mr. John Torrance, of Montreal; second to Amy, sister of his first wife.

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This gentleman, who is better known by his priestly title of "Father" Stafford, has for more than twelve years past occupied the position of Roman Catholic parish priest of Lindsay, Ontario. Though acting in so comparatively humble a sphere, he has become known throughout the country as a man of genuine philanthropy, earnest zeal, and practical piety. His exertions in the cause of temperance, or—to speak more accurately—of total abstinence, have been attended with great benefits, and have by no means been restricted to those who profess his own theological creed. He was born in the township of Drummond, in the county of Lanark, Ontario, on the 1st of March, 1832. The homestead was on the banks of the Mississippi, about eight miles from the town of Perth. His parents came originally from Wexford, in Ireland, and made a home for themselves in the Canadian forest. A mile distant from their abode was the early home of the late Hon. Malcolm Cameron, and entertaining incidents are still told of the election campaign when young Malcolm ran as "the barefooted boy" against a scion of the Family Compact, receiving the hearty support of Stafford père, who was an earnest Reformer, and who worked with special zeal in this election, although the general influence of his Church was put forward on the other side. Young Stafford went to the county school until he was fourteen, and then spent two years at the Perth High School. He afterwards spent a year at Chambly College, where he acquired a knowledge of the French language. The six succeeding years were passed at Ste. Thérèse, where his course in arts was finished. He then entered Regiopolis College, Kingston, and studied theology under the Venerable Vicar-General McDonnell, Professor of Languages and Theology, with whom he was a great favourite, and who always manifested the deepest interest in his welfare. During the latter part of his course at this institution he acted as assistant-chaplain at the Penitentiary, and in the discharge of this duty observed that liquor-drinking had a great deal to do with filling the cells of the establishment; but it was not till some years afterwards that he became a total abstainer, and a determined and effective foe to intemperance. He was ordained priest in 1858, by Bishop Horan, and was immediately appointed director of Regiopolis College, and Professor of Philosophy and Metaphysics. The young priest's preference was at this time decidedly for a life within the college walls as an educator, rather than for the missionary and parish work in which he was subsequently to win substantial success and celebrity. As boy and young man he had always been somewhat delicate, and the severity of his studies and devotion to his professorial and other duties induced pulmonary disease, to which four of the best physicians of the [Pg 188]country predicted he must shortly succumb. The Vicar-General resolved to try and save the life of his favourite student, and together they started in January, 1859, for Cuba. On reaching Charleston, S.C., the Vicar-General found that his patient could not stand the increasing heat, and they accordingly went up to the "hill country"—the Pine Ridge on the Pedee River—where the winter was spent with advantage to the health of the invalid. Here he saw slavery perhaps under its most advantageous forms, but it did not reconcile him to it, and Father Stafford, while at an auction sale of slaves at Richmond, having expressed his disapprobation somewhat strongly, though unobtrusively, was "warned" by a peace officer, who supposed he was from the Northern States. The statement that he was a British subject changed the warning to friendly advice and hospitable treatment. The summer was spent in a trip to Ireland, England and France, and he came back in September completely restored to health. He went back to his duties in the College as Professor of Logic, Metaphysics and Ethics, and remained for the scholastic year. About nine months were spent at Picton and six at Kemptville in the place of priests absent through ill-health. In October he was appointed to the parish of Wolfe Island. Here he had an opportunity of seeing what was not then to be seen in any other part of Upper Canada—a congregation of Roman Catholics who were total abstainers, and who had been total abstainers for twelve years. There was no fighting, no quarrelling, no begging; the schools were all flourishing, and all in consequence of total abstinence, which had been established by the Rev. Father Foley. Father Stafford had there an opportunity of seeing Calvin & Breck's industry carried on. They would sometimes have from one hundred and fifty to two hundred raftsmen employed in rafting square timber and staves; and though these men had to work in the water all day, they took no liquor, and as Father Stafford has stated in his public addresses, to his knowledge they never became ill. In May, 1868, he was appointed to the parish of Lindsay, and settled there with some regret, as he found a perceptible difference between the state of things there and on the island. The schools were behind, and the people were not so comfortable, not so well lodged, and not so well educated as on the island. There were then eight taverns, or liquor houses, in the township of Ops. He found out, on inquiry, the enormous amount spent in liquor, and set himself diligently to work to remedy the evil. A considerable number of the members of his congregation had lost their farms through drinking and the consequences of drinking. He was forced to the conclusion that the only way to stop the drinking was to organize a total abstinence society. This was done, and at the end of the first year nine hundred persons had taken the pledge. Within two years most of the members of the congregation had followed their example. The shebeens gradually disappeared; the farms and farm-houses improved; comfortable and well-appointed brick schoolhouses took the places of the old log buildings, and the township advanced to the rank of one of the best in the county and Province. It is curious to note that, as the taverns were closed, new brick schoolhouses sprang up; then there were eight liquor-selling houses and only two brick schoolhouses; now the number of the latter edifices is twelve—being one for each section in the township. The Separate School in Lindsay was then one of inferior character, but is now a very fine building, erected in 1869. The average attendance then was one hundred; the new school afforded accommodation for twice that number, and within a year after it was opened all the accommodation was taken up. The competitive examination established in Ops showed that [Pg 189]in the school sections where most drinking had been done the education was inferior, but in the sections where total abstinence prevailed the reverse was the case. Father Stafford has always taken a deep interest in education. Some years ago he gave twenty dollars a year in prizes for the Ops competitive examination, and the results were very gratifying. His efforts to improve the educational facilities of Ops and Lindsay are well known. As an instance of this, we may mention that he supplied several Public Schools of Ops with maps and apparatus, and that the trustees put up brick school buildings in accordance with his plans as to architecture and ventilation. In addition to the fine Separate School building erected in Lindsay, the handsome Loretto Convent is a substantial testimony to his enterprise and zeal, as well as to the liberal manner in which he was supported by his fellow citizens. The ventilation of the convent has some special merits, and has been highly recommended by the Provincial Architect, Mr. Kivas Tully, and has been adopted for the Normal School at Ottawa and the Female College at Duffin's Creek; while several farmers of the county of Victoria have adopted the same principle for their private dwellings. With the approval of the Archbishop of Toronto, and of his own bishop, Father Stafford succeeded in 1860 in getting the Education Department to introduce into their Depository a supply of books for Roman Catholic schools, school libraries and prize books—an arrangement that was greatly appreciated by the Catholics of the Province. It was fitting that the Government should offer so active an educationist the appointment of Head Master of the Ottawa Normal School, when it was opened several years ago; but he declined the offer, as he felt satisfied that the sedentary work would not agree with his health. In the summer of 1876 he paid a visit to England and Ireland, and frequently addressed large meetings in advocacy of total abstinence, while he said everywhere a good word for Canada. In London he lectured at the request of Cardinal Manning, and had very large audiences. Father Stafford's bold and statesmanlike utterances on the occasion of the 12th of July disturbances in Montreal in 1877, are still fresh in the public memory, and are worthy of preservation in a permanent form, more especially in a land where there is a perpetually-recurring liability to such contingencies.

As a speaker, Father Stafford does not strive to produce striking effect by "brilliant" oratory. He is concise and simple, but speaks with an energy and earnestness that make a deep impression. He depends more upon facts and experiences than upon glittering generalities, and his arguments and appeals have the greater power over his audience. Being still in the prime of life, this social reformer has before him a career of great usefulness to the country, and his field of work promises to become greatly widened as time rolls on. He is much beloved and esteemed by his people, who have more than once testified their appreciation of his labours. He has on his part evinced commendable generosity, especially in promoting the educational interests of the parish, and on one occasion he contributed out of his own resources the large sum of $7,500. His interest in social reform and sanitary matters has also been very active and useful, and his career as a whole is one which we should be glad to see imitated by many of his contemporaries in this country, both clerical and lay.

[Pg 190]




Principal Caven was born in the parish of Kirkcolm, Wigtonshire, Scotland, on the 26th of December, 1830. His ancestors on both sides had been settled in that neighbourhood for centuries, and several of them figure conspicuously in the local annals. They were in their day strenuous supporters of the Solemn League and Covenant, and the names of some of them are enshrined on the roll of the "Wigton Martyrs." One of the most cherished traditions of the family on the mother's side relates how one of them, for refusing to abjure his faith, suffered grievous bodily mutilation at the hands of the dragoons of "Bloody Claverse"—known to history as John Graham, Viscount Dundee. A less accurately authenticated tradition identifies Margaret Wilson, who suffered martyrdom in 1685, along with Margaret Maclachlan,10 as a member of the family from which Principal Caven's mother is descended.

His father was the late Mr. John Caven, a sound scholar and a very worthy man, who was by profession a school teacher. The late Mr. Caven was a member of the United Secession Church, which, by its union, in 1840, with the "Relief" Church, as it was called, formed the United Presbyterian Church—an organization which still retains a separate corporate existence in Scotland and the United States, though it has long since lost it in Canada and some of the other colonies, owing to successive unions between it and other Presbyterian bodies. Not being a member of the Established Church of Scotland, Mr. Caven was in those days ineligible for the position of a parish schoolmaster, but he had no difficulty in obtaining pupils, and enjoyed a creditable reputation alike as a sound scholar and a successful instructor. He emigrated from Wigtonshire to Canada in the summer of 1847, and for a short time took up his abode near Galt, Ontario, in the township of North Dumfries. After a time he removed to the neighbourhood of St. Mary's, where he continued to reside down to the time of his death a few months since. He resumed his labours in the work of education after his arrival in Canada, first as a teacher, and afterwards as a school superintendent, and was greatly beloved for his amiability and uprightness of character.

William Caven
William Caven
Lith. by Rolph Smith Ltd Toronto from Photo by W. Notman & Fraser

His son, the subject of this memoir, received his early education at the school kept by his father, in the parish of Kirkcolm. He was a diligent student, and did full justice to his father's instructions. He chose the ministry as his profession, and when the family emigrated and settled in Dumfries, he began his studies under the auspices of the United Presbyterian Church, [Pg 191]which had been planted in Western Canada, largely through the instrumentality of the Rev. William Fraser, of Bondhead, and the Rev. Alexander Mackenzie, of Goderich, both of whom came as missionaries from Nova Scotia. The educational institutions of the country were not in a very forward state in those days. The Presbyterian body had at that time no regular collegiate institution of its own, and candidates for the ministry were forced to content themselves with such appliances as could be provided. The training of students was entrusted to the late Rev. William Proudfoot, of London—father of the present Vice-Chancellor—and the Rev. Mr. Mackenzie above mentioned. Mr. Caven devoted himself assiduously to the prescribed literary and theological course under the direction of those venerable men. During the academical year of 1850-51 he studied in Toronto, and completed his course by reading for another year. He was licensed to preach in the early part of 1852, by the old Flamboro' Presbytery, and in October of the same year he was ordained and inducted into the pastorate of the charge known as St. Mary's and Downie. At one period in his career as a student he was engaged for a short time in the work of teaching, and during 1855 and 1856 he spent nearly a year in Scotland for the benefit of his health, without, however, surrendering his pastoral charge. These were the only interruptions which occurred in his work as a student and minister until 1865, when the Synod appointed him and his present colleague, Professor Gregg, to fill, during alternate terms, the chair of Exegetical Theology and Biblical Criticism, which had been vacated by Professor Young in the previous year. The appointment of Professor of the same Department was permanently conferred upon him in 1866, and from that time to the present he has continued to occupy that position. As a teacher of Exegetics, he has from the commencement of his incumbency been noted for his great moderation and candour in stating the opinions which he feels bound to controvert, not less than by his firm adhesion to views of Biblical interpretation held in common by all Evangelical churches, as well as those which are more distinctively characteristic of his own. The truth, as he holds it, and as the Presbyterian Church holds it, has no more fearless and uncompromising defender, and few more efficient.

In 1870, Dr. Willis, who was Principal of the college, resigned that position, and was succeeded by Professor Caven, under the title of Chairman of the College Board. This title, in 1873, was abandoned for that of Principal, which position and title he still holds by appointment of the General Assembly. When an effort was made to procure a new edifice for the college he was chosen chairman of the committee appointed to canvass for funds, and in this capacity he, in company with his colleague, Professor Gregg, spent two summers in making a tour through the Province of Ontario. Mainly through their exertions the building fund had by the end of that time risen to nearly $100,000, all of which, together with about $30,000 since raised, has been expended on the new building, the cornerstone of which was laid in April, 1874. The college was occupied for the first time during the academical year of 1875-76. There is also in existence in connection with the college the nucleus of an endowment fund, the principal part of which consists of a bequest of $40,000 from the late Mr. William Hall, of Peterboro', who died intestate, but whose well-known intentions in the matter were carried out by his heirs-at-law in a manner as creditable to them as it will doubtless prove beneficial to the institution. The endowment fund at the present time amounts to about $52,000.

Principal Caven has always been a zealous advocate of the union of the various branches [Pg 192]of the Presbyterian Church. By the amalgamation of the Free and United Presbyterian Churches of Canada in 1861 he became a minister of what was for the next fourteen years known as the Canada Presbyterian Church. He was appointed a member of the Union Committee of that body when an amalgamation between it and the Presbyterian Church of Canada in connection with the Church of Scotland was first projected, and no one person did more to bring the negotiations to a successful termination than he. He was Moderator of the Canada Presbyterian Church in 1875, and at the Union it devolved upon him, in his official capacity, to sign the Articles of Union in the name of the Church.

Though not past middle age, and though neither a brilliant nor a showy orator, Principal Caven has won a high reputation, not only as Principal of one of the most important of our educational institutions, but as a preacher, a member of church courts, a scholar and a thinker. Persons thoroughly capable of forming an unbiassed opinion have declared that as a debater he is unrivalled in the Presbyterian Church. It is said that "Having first clearly thought out his own view of the matter in hand, he has the faculty of presenting it in a singularly effective way for the consideration of others. His arguments are invariably characterized by an amount of lucidity and a freedom from sophistry which are well calculated to give weight to his utterances, and which, combined with a considerable amount of forensic skill, and the well-known intellectual sincerity of the speaker, seldom fail to win a substantial victory for the side which is so fortunate as to secure his advocacy. Although one of the most immovable and uncompromising of ecclesiastics in all matters where a principle is at stake, Principal Caven is at the same time one of the gentlest, most retiring, and most unassuming of men, his great influence being the result of no conscious striving after it on his part; while his manner is the perfect embodiment of quiet power."

Principal Caven takes a deep, if unobtrusive interest in all questions affecting the public welfare, and is specially interested in educational matters. In 1877 he was elected to the Presidency of the Ontario Teachers' Association, as successor to Professor Goldwin Smith. This position he still retains. He was appointed Chairman of one of the sederunts of the General Presbyterian Council, which met in Edinburgh, Scotland, in July, 1877.

In July, 1856, he married Miss Goldie, of Greenfields, near Ayr, in the county of Waterloo, Ontario. He has a family of seven children.

Luther Hamilton Holton
Luther Hamilton Holton
Lith. by Rolph Smith Ltd Toronto from Photo by W. J. Topley, Ottawa

[Pg 193]



No man who has taken an equally conspicuous part in public life in this country during the last quarter of a century has succeeded in retaining a larger share of the personal friendship and respect of politicians of every phase of opinion than the late Mr. Holton. Though a sufficiently pronounced party man, who took his full share in the stirring debates of his time, and who had always the courage of his opinions, he was no mere factionist, and always regarded the interests of his country as paramount to those of any party whatsoever. He possessed an uncommonly well-balanced mind, and was never led into the errors into which extreme partisans on both sides are tolerably certain to fall. Persons who are entitled to speak with authority have declared that, throughout the long course of his political life, though he was frequently engaged in the bitter conflicts engendered by the times, he never discussed questions in such a manner as to be unable to meet his adversaries the next hour, and give them a cordial grasp of the hand. His antagonism was confined to matters affecting the public welfare, and, so far as is known and believed, he left not a single personal enemy behind him. He was sensitive to public opinion, and proud of the popularity which he enjoyed; but he was wise enough to know that no man can ever be permanently popular who ceases to be true to himself. He fought the battles of Parliamentary and Constitutional freedom with unflinching courage, and with a firmness and tenacity which knew no shadow of turning; but his breast was intolerant of rancour, and he could do justice to the sincerity of purpose of those who honestly differed from him. We have had more impassioned and effective orators in our Canadian Parliament; we have had statesmen of stronger individuality, and more comprehensive grasp; we have had Cabinet Ministers more brilliant and more showy, but we have had none more truly honourable and useful, none more truly respected, more sincerely desirous for the public good, or who worked for that end with more unswerving singleness of mind; none with a higher sense of duty to the public which he served; none better adapted by nature and training for a trustworthy and serviceable member of Parliament. His sudden and unexpected death at the age of sixty-two years has left a gap in the ranks of his Party, and indeed in the ranks of Parliament, which will not soon be filled. At the time of his death he was, with the single exception of the Premier, Sir John A. Macdonald, the oldest member of the House of Commons.

He was born in the township of Lansdowne, in the county of Leeds, Upper Canada, in the month of October, 1817. Concerning his early life we have but slight information. In 1826, just before the completion of his ninth year, the family of [Pg 194]which he was a member removed to Montreal, which thenceforward continued to be his home. In early youth he embarked in commercial pursuits, in which, though he began low down on the ladder, he was destined to attain to affluence and distinction. In or about the year 1830 he entered as a clerk in the office of Messrs. Hooker & Co., one of the great forwarding establishments of Montreal in those days. This firm, in addition to carrying on a general mercantile business, was largely engaged in the transportation of merchandise from the chief ports of entry to the various cities and towns of Canada. The business connection was very large and profitable. Railways had no existence in those times, and the canal system of Canada was yet in its infancy. Transportation was chiefly carried on by means of Durham boats, batteaux, and wagons. Young Holton manifested great aptitude for a commercial life, and was not long in making his way to a front rank among his fellow-employees. He took a keen interest in the pursuits in which he was engaged; his industry was great, and his integrity unimpeachable. His position erelong became one of great responsibility, and there can be no doubt that his individual exertions were the means of greatly extending the business of the firm. In process of time he was admitted to a partnership, and the style of the firm became Hooker, Holton & Co. The business continued to prosper until the era of railways arrived, when it soon became apparent that the old methods of transportation would have to be abandoned. Mr. Holton readily grasped the main points of the situation, and formed his plans in accordance with the new order of things. He associated himself with the principal contractors of the country, including the present Sir Alexander Galt, and Messrs. Gzowski and Macpherson. A company was incorporated, which undertook to construct a line of railway from Montreal to Kingston, and Mr. Holton and his partners endeavoured to obtain the contracts for its construction. The contract for the construction of the whole Grand Trunk system, however, from Montreal to Toronto, was placed in the hands of the great English contracting firm of Peto, Brassey & Co. Soon afterwards the firm of Gzowski & Co., in which Mr. Holton was a partner, obtained the contract for the construction of the road from Toronto westward. The contract was faithfully carried out, and the firm netted a handsome profit. From that time forward Mr. Holton was pecuniarily independent of the world, and though he engaged in other large and profitable enterprises he began to devote more attention to political affairs than he had previously found leisure for doing. He had always entertained strong Liberal views, and already occupied a seat in Parliament. His advent into active political life dates from the general elections of 1854, when, in conjunction with the present Chief Justice Dorion and the late Hon. John Young, he presented himself as a candidate for the representation of the city of Montreal. He and his two coadjutors were all returned, and for the next three years Mr. Holton was a hardworking member of Parliament. He from the first applied himself to the task of acquiring a thorough knowledge of the rules and modes of procedure, and to a study of the business before the House. He was a constant attendant at the meetings of Committees, and familiarized himself with practical details. He worked steadily from session to session, and by degrees gained a very comprehensive knowledge of Parliamentary practice. He was even then an enthusiastic advocate of the British system of Parliamentary Government, and few of his contemporaries in the Canadian Assembly could boast, of so intimate a knowledge of the practice of Parliament, and of the principles underlying and [Pg 195]governing it. Alike as a partisan and a Parliamentary member he was above suspicion, and never allowed his personal bias to interfere with his public conduct. He was a warm friend of the Hon.—now Sir—Francis Hincks, but his first vote was against the then-existing Ministry, of which Mr. Hincks was the Premier and leading spirit.

At the general election of 1857 Mr. Holton once more presented himself to his constituents in Centre Montreal as a candidate for Parliament. His opponent was the present Sir John Rose, who was successful in the contest. A petition was filed by Mr. Holton against Mr. Rose's return, but was unsuccessful, owing to a trivial technical defect in the jurat of the affidavit accompanying it. For several years subsequent to this time Mr. Holton was without a seat in Parliament. He accepted the portfolio of Commissioner of Public Works in the short-lived Brown-Dorion Administration formed in the month of August, 1858, and became a Member of the Executive Council, but resigned, with his colleagues, without entering upon the departmental duties. It was thus not necessary that he should seek election by any constituency, and he remained in private life. The Legislative Council, however, was then an elective body, and in 1862, a vacancy having occurred in the Victoria division—embracing three-fourths of the city of Montreal—he offered himself for that division, and was returned by acclamation. In May, 1863, he resigned his position in the Council, and offered himself as a candidate for a seat in the Assembly, as Representative for the county of Chateauguay. He was elected for that constituency, and thenceforward continued to represent it in Parliament down to the time of his death, embracing a period of seventeen years. No man not of French-Canadian stock ever won so large a measure of the confidence of the inhabitants of the Lower Province, and that confidence was never betrayed.

In the Sandfield Macdonald-Dorion Administration, formed in 1863, Mr. Holton accepted the portfolio of Minister of Finance. This office he held until the resignation of the Government in February of the following year. In the subsequent proceedings which resulted in the Confederation of the Provinces Mr. Holton for the first time in his life found himself out of sympathy with the leading spirits of his Party on an important public question. The scheme of Confederation, and the coalition formed for the purpose of carrying it into effect, were projects which did not commend themselves to his judgment, and he did not display any hesitation in speaking his mind, both from his place in Parliament and elsewhere. His position at this time was one of much difficulty, but his genuine sincerity and manliness were never more signally displayed in the whole course of his legislative career. It is worthy of note that the stand taken by him at this time did not have the effect of alienating from him a single member of the Liberal Party. His hostility to Confederation was based not so much on the general principles of the scheme itself as on the nature of some of its details, and on the method pursued for securing its adoption. This was rendered sufficiently apparent from a speech delivered by him early in the course of the debates in the House on the subject. "It is quite manifest," he said, "that a union, even if generally desirable, may become undesirable from the bad or inconvenient arrangements incident to the adoption of that union; and that explains the position of many honourable gentlemen who, like myself, are not opposed to the Federal principle, but who find themselves obliged to go counter, apparently, to their own convictions, because they cannot accept a union clogged with such conditions as this union is." He continued to oppose the scheme so long as opposition seemed to promise any useful result. His conduct, however, was [Pg 196]characterized by nothing approaching to factiousness, and no one ever presumed to doubt that he was actuated from first to last by a high sense of duty. No sooner had Confederation become an accomplished fact than he bowed to the popular will, and once more took his place in the Liberal ranks of the Dominion. In 1871 he once more found himself at issue with the members of his Party generally with respect to the Treaty effected through the agency of the Joint High Commission which met at Washington in that year. In the course of the debate in the Commons he explained the reasons which led him to acquiesce in the measure. Having alluded to the painful necessity of separating himself on the question before the House from those friends from Ontario with whom he usually acted, he remarked that among the members who had addressed the House on the Opposition side, he stood almost alone as an original friend of the Treaty; not that he considered it a perfect instrument, for it contained many things he would gladly have seen omitted, and many things were omitted which he would gladly have seen inserted; but it constituted, in his judgment, an earnest and hopeful effort to settle the long outstanding difficulties between the Empire and the Government of the neighbouring Republic. Holding that view, in spite of the objection to details, he accepted the Treaty. "This is not," he remarked, "a Treaty to which Canada would have become a party as an independent country, and not one that England would have become a party to if she had not these Provinces as part of her Empire. That consideration elevates the whole question at once into the domain of Imperial policy." But while declaring his intention on these grounds to vote for the second reading of the Bill giving effect to the fishery clauses, he criticised with great severity the conduct of the Prime Minister of Canada in accepting a position which prevented him from acting solely in the interest of Canada. He accordingly voted against the Ministry, and afterwards supported the second reading of the Bill.

In 1871, in deference to a very general demand from the electors of Montreal Centre, he allowed himself to be put into nomination for that constituency as a candidate for the Local Legislature, and after a sharp contest he carried the election against Mr. Carter. He held the seat three years, when he resigned it, and restricted his labours to the House of Commons at Ottawa, where he accorded a steady and consistent support to Mr. Mackenzie's Administration. He declined to accept a place in that Administration, owing to a disinclination to encumber himself with the cares of office, but he was in full sympathy with the Ministerial policy, and promoted it to the utmost of his great ability, filling, in addition to other important positions, that of Chairman of the Committee on Banking and Commerce. He was not a verbose or frequent speaker, and when he addressed the House his utterances were more remarkable for terseness and relevance than for volubility or elocutionary display. "He was," says a contemporary writer, "independent in circumstances and more independent in character. No profitable transaction in which the House was asked to intervene, even to the extent of granting a charter of incorporation, found his name connected with it. His intimate personal friends who knew how careful he was to have no considerable interest in Joint Stock Companies which were likely to come to Parliament as petitioners, even for changes in their corporate powers, were sometimes disposed to believe that he pushed this principle to an extreme." As a member of Committees Mr. Holton's services were simply invaluable, and in this respect he has not left his equal behind him.

His death, which took place early on the [Pg 197]morning of Sunday, the 14th of March last, was very sudden and unexpected. He was at Ottawa, in the discharge of his Parliamentary duties, when the end came. On Saturday, the 13th, he was apparently in good health and spirits, engaging freely in conversation with the members generally, and discussing topics with many of his Liberal friends. During the evening he dined at the Rideau Club as the guest of the Hon. Mr. Mackenzie Bowell, Minister of Customs. Shortly before midnight he returned to his hotel and retired to rest, but soon afterwards left his room, complaining of being unwell. After remaining up for a short time he again retired to his apartment, but about one o'clock rang his bell for the attendant, whom he despatched for medical assistance. In the temporary absence of Doctors Brouse and Bergin from the hotel, Dr. Grant was sent for, but a few minutes before he arrived Mr. Holton had breathed his last, in the presence of the Hon. Isaac Burpee and Sir Albert Smith, who on their arrival had found him in a state of unconsciousness, from which he never recovered. His death was by some attributed to apoplexy, and by others to disease of the heart.

Upon the opening of the House on the following day, Sir John A. Macdonald, the Premier, moved an adjournment in token of respect to the memory of the deceased statesman. His touching and eloquent remarks were evidently dictated by sincere and deep feeling, and produced a very visible effect upon those who heard them. He stated that although he had mingled in the strife of politics with Mr. Holton, almost since the commencement of his political life, there had never ceased to exist the warmest personal friendship between them. "I had most intimate business relations with him," remarked Sir John, "and I can vouch, as all the world can vouch, for the unswerving honesty and uprightness of purpose which characterized his actions and his conduct in every relation of life—private, social, commercial and political. He held a unique position in the Parliament of Canada. Though a strong party man, and sometimes, from my point of view, too strongly actuated by partisan motives, still from the uprightness of his mind, the soundness of his judgment, and the warmth of his devotion to his country, he held himself aloof from the more bitter struggles of his party, and we on this side of the House always looked with confidence to him in matters in which the honour, the dignity, or the prosperity of this Dominion—or of this Province before it was connected with the Dominion—were concerned. If I may be permitted to say so, he held a position in this House in which his disinterested usefulness to the country was more distinguished than at any other period of his life. He had survived much of the ardent bitterness of party conflict, and thought only of the good of his country; and he prided himself, and justly prided himself, on being a great Parliamentary authority. His utility to the House, and to every member of the House, and his usefulness to the country in that regard, were almost, if not quite, unequalled in either branch of the Legislature. I speak, of course, not in a party sense when I say that his mind was exceedingly conservative, and that in all legislation, and especially legislation affecting vested interests or private rights, he was always found protecting those interests and those rights, and resisting any attempt to override them by revolutionary or hasty action.... I know what must be the regrets of his political friends. I know how useful he was to them, and what a great loss he will be to his party; but I say from the sincerity of my heart that I think that the loss to the whole House is as great as the loss to his own political friends. But, sir, if he be a loss to this House, how serious [Pg 198]must be the considerations which press upon my own mind. I have known him so long—knowing him from youth upwards, and seeing him one of the last of the old party I used to meet years and years ago—I feel, to use the words of Burke with regard to the death of his son, 'What shadows we are and what shadows we pursue.' I feel, sir, that no member would have the heart to rise to-day to enter upon any discussion of importance, but that all who see that empty chair and think of that kindly countenance will feel with me that we ought to show our last respect to his memory by adjourning." Sir John's remarks were followed by a few words from Mr. Mackenzie, the leader of the Opposition, standing beside the empty chair of his late friend, and he was so overcome that he utterly broke down. Mr. Mackenzie was followed by Mr. Laurier and several others, all of whom echoed the tone of the speech just quoted from. The funeral, which took place at Montreal on the following Wednesday, was an imposing demonstration of respect. It was attended by statesmen and prominent citizens from all parts of the Dominion, who assembled to pay a last tribute to the memory of a man of stainless honour, and to express sympathy with those who have been left to mourn his loss.

Mr. Holton, early in life, married Miss Forbes, of Montreal, who survives him. Besides the Parliamentary functions conferred upon him by his fellow-citizens, Mr. Holton occupied many of those positions of trust which depend upon the confidence of the business communities. He was an Honorary President of the Reform Association of the Parti National of Montreal, and a Governor of McGill University. He was President of the Board of Trade, and of the City and District Savings Bank; Vice-President of the Free Trade Association; Harbour Commissioner; Director of the City Bank; and a member of the Corporation of Montreal.

[Pg 199]



The development of the fur trade of New France, and the general progress made by the colony during the seventeenth century, gave rise to a considerable emigration of enterprising adventurers from the Old World to the New. Many of the emigrants were younger members of illustrious French families, whose chief allurement to abandon civilization had its origin in a mere love of adventure. Others were impelled by the hope of gain, and by the scarcity of suitable employment in their native land. The marvellous stories of Champlain, of Maisonneuve, of Frontenac, and of those Reverend Fathers whose Relations form so enthralling a chapter in our early colonial history, were eminently calculated to stir the blood of ardent and adventurous youths who had no particular inducement to remain at home, and who beheld in the boundless wilds of the Great West an excellent market for their surplus energy and enthusiasm. Among these voluntary exiles was a youth named Papineau, who, towards the close of the century, abandoned the pleasant vineyards of Southern France, and sought a field for the exercise of his talents in the less genial climate of Canada. He settled at Montreal, and founded the Canadian branch of the family of Papineau. We have no means at hand for minutely tracing the line of descent. Suffice it to say that the father of the subject of this sketch was born at Montreal on the 16th of October, 1752, and that he lived long enough to be familiarly known to many persons who are still living. He was a notary-public, and was for many years a member of the Provincial Assembly. He was wise enough to see that he and his fellow-colonists had been gainers, rather than losers, by the Conquest, and became a loyal subject of Great Britain. In an address to the electors of Montreal delivered by him in 1810 he professed a strong attachment to the King, and declared his readiness to expose his life and property for the preservation of the Union. After a long and useful career he died in his native city in 1840. His son, the subject of the present sketch, was born at Montreal on the 7th of October, 1789, two years before the division of the colony into the two Provinces of Upper and Lower Canada. The son received his scholastic training at the Seminary of Quebec, and at an early age entered upon the study of the law. Like other aspiring French Canadian youths, he early manifested a deep interest in the national politics, and long before reaching manhood he was known as a brilliant and effective declaimer against what he believed to be unwise public measures. In 1809, while yet a student and a minor, he was elected to Parliament as representative of the Lower Canadian constituency of Kent—now Chambly. Notwithstanding his minority, he continued for nearly two years to sit in the Assembly for this constituency. It is no disparagement [Pg 200]to him to say that he was at this time totally unfit to take part in the proceedings of a grave deliberative assembly. A judicious writer, commenting upon this part of his life, very sensibly says:—"While we cannot but admire the aggressive force of character which prompted a young man of twenty to enter the field of legislative strife, we cannot help thinking that the gifts, natural or acquired, of the average young man of that age would scarcely compensate for inexperience, political childishness, crudity of thought, and a tendency to intemperance in action." Young Papineau, however, was not one to underrate his own merits, and the unwise compliments of his admirers led him to regard himself as a heaven-born legislator, and as the destined saviour of his country. In 1811, having attained his majority, he was called to the Bar, and was immediately afterwards elected to Parliament as representative of the West Ward of Montreal—a position which he continued to hold for twenty successive years. Most of the "burning questions" of those days are now dead issues, and nothing is to be gained by closely following his legislative career. As every student of Canadian history knows, differences were constantly arising between the Assembly and the successive Governors sent out from the Mother Country to direct the administration of affairs. There was much tyranny on one side, and there was too often unreasonable opposition on the other. The bitter question of nationality was constantly obtruding itself, and young Papineau worked upon the prejudices of his fellow-countrymen in such a fashion that public harmony was out of the question. He soon found himself the leader of an enthusiastic minority of Nationalists in the Assembly. Upon the breaking out of the War of 1812, however, he took the command of a volunteer company, and served in that capacity until peace was restored. In 1817 he was elected Speaker of the House, a position which he continued to occupy from that time until 1837, except during the period of his absence in England as a delegate to oppose the union of the Provinces, as will presently be mentioned. Soon after the arrival of the Earl of Dalhousie as Governor, in 1820, that nobleman, at the instigation of the Home Office, offered Mr. Papineau a seat at the Executive Council Board. The offer was accepted, but, owing to a misunderstanding with the Governor, Mr. Papineau declined to take his seat. The misunderstanding soon became a serious rupture, and in 1823 the supplementary seat was abolished. Meanwhile, Mr. Papineau's opposition was positively ferocious, and his influence in the House was altogether out of proportion to his abilities. The public supplies were stopped, and the royal instructions were treated with contempt. The project for reuniting the Provinces was urged at this time with great prospects of success, and a Bill providing for the union was actually introduced into the British Parliament. The French Canadian populace were almost to a man averse to this measure, which they regarded as being subversive of their privileges. It must be admitted that their aversion was not quite groundless. The Bill affected the disposal by the Assembly of taxes levied for State purposes, and prohibited the use of the French language in the debates and public Acts of Parliament. When intelligence of the contents of this Bill reached Lower Canada the French population of that Province were roused to a high pitch of excitement. They determined to send delegates to England to oppose the measure. The delegates fixed upon were Mr. Papineau and Mr.—afterwards the Hon. John—Neilson, who sat in the Assembly as member for the county of Quebec. In the spring of the year 1822 these gentlemen crossed the Atlantic, carrying with them a numerously-signed petition to the Imperial Parliament, praying that the [Pg 201]proposed measure might not receive its sanction. The delegates were well received in London, and made such good use of their time that the Union project was defeated. Sir James Mackintosh, Sir Francis Burdett, and the leaders of the Liberal Party in the House of Commons opposed it so strenuously that it was abandoned on its second reading. It was owing to the exertions of these Lower Canadian delegates that the Union of the Provinces was postponed until 1841. Mr. Neilson returned to this country after a stay of a few months. His colleague remained for some time longer "to guard against surprises." During Mr. Papineau's absence in England on this mission the Speaker's chair in the Lower Canadian Assembly was occupied by M. Vallières de St. Real. This gentleman retired immediately after Mr. Papineau's return, and the latter was again elected to the position; but the rupture between him and the Governor had by this time become active hostility, and the treatment which each of them received at the hands of the other was utterly unworthy of both. During the session of 1827 the Assembly, at Mr. Papineau's instigation, made an unconstitutional demand upon the Governor, who was asked to lay before the House certain private correspondence between himself and the Home Office. The Governor courteously, but firmly, declined to accede to this unreasonable request. The Assembly, instead of bowing to this decision, set themselves seriously to question its legality, and when they found that no exception could be taken to it on that score, they devoted themselves to annoying the Governor by hampering him at every point. Days were frittered away in puerile and fruitless discussions, and legislation was completely arrested. Reviewing the matter calmly at this distance of time, there can be no doubt that there was blame on both sides. The Governor was petulant and tyrannical; and the Assembly trifled with its duties in a manner altogether unbecoming. Lord Dalhousie, irritated almost beyond endurance, prorogued the House. Parliament was soon afterwards dissolved, and the result of the following elections was a decisive majority for the Papineau faction. On Wednesday, the 20th of November, 1827, the new House met, and forthwith proceeded to elect a Speaker. The almost universal choice of the House fell upon Mr. Papineau, who received forty-four votes, his opponent receiving only five. The Governor, upon this result being communicated to him, was so unwise as to refuse to ratify the election, and directed them to proceed to the election of another Speaker. Such an act was not likely to be tamely submitted to by so boisterous a stickler for the privileges of the House as Mr. Papineau, whose word was law to a large majority in the Assembly. The House refused to be dictated to in such a matter, and asserted their independence by passing a resolution confirming their choice of Mr. Papineau. Having proceeded this length, they began to examine the Constitution, and to search in the proceedings of the English House of Commons for precedents. After finding two obsolete cases, neither of which was precisely in point, they proceeded to vote five resolutions. The first of these declared that the Speaker ought to be freely chosen. The second declared that Mr. Papineau had been so chosen. The third and fourth were to the effect that the Governor's ratification of their choice was not legally necessary. The fifth reaffirmed their choice. Mr. Papineau was again seated in the Speaker's chair, and the five members who had voted for his opponent, M. Vallières de St. Real, left their seats and retired from the House. An address was then sent in to the Governor, setting forth the House's proceedings. His Excellency promised to reply in two days. Instead of delivering a formal reply, Lord Dalhousie prorogued Parliament. Before it met next year Sir [Pg 202]James Kempt had succeeded to the Governor's office. Upon the assembling of Parliament Sir James ratified the Assembly's choice, and so ended one of the many struggles between the Lower Canadian Assembly and the Governor.

The result of this contest tended to unduly exalt Mr. Papineau in the estimation of French Canadians, and to give him a prominence to which his parts scarcely entitled him. A Canadian writer, commenting upon this episode in the Arch-agitator's career, says:—"It is with races numerically weak and politically simple that a reputation is most easy to achieve and most difficult to fulfil." Mr. Papineau's successful opposition to Lord Dalhousie made him eager to engage in fresh conflicts with that Governor's successor. During Sir James Kempt's short administration the disputes in the Assembly respecting the control of the finances were renewed with almost as much vigour as under Lord Dalhousie; and the excitement continued to be kept up during Lord Aylmer's tenure of office. "Governor succeeded Governor," says one of Mr. Papineau's biographers, "but the change of representatives was unattended with any essential change of policy. Each party dwelt on its special rights, and overlooked its general duties—exaggerated its powers, and lost sight of its responsibilities. Doubtless there was some excuse, for Parliamentary government, as it is now interpreted, was neither understood by those who advocated nor by those who opposed it. The national party had studied English history in its fiercest passages, and the British Constitution in its most trying struggles. Moreover, they had done so irreverently, after the manner of impatient students, and they applied it angrily, like irascible professors, when they reduced their knowledge to practice. They examined the subject theoretically, as it is described in books, but they did not observe it practically, as it is applied by statesmen. They seemed but feebly to perceive that the three estates of our mixed monarchy are not absolutely fashioned in cast-iron moulds, unyielding in their forms and inflexible in their substance. They overlooked the elasticity, the compensating powers, the balance movements, the expanding and contracting forces by which those estates control and regulate one another. Neither did they take sufficient account of the traditional and hereditary elements, the custom and usage with which their existence is intermingled. Consequently they missed the human elements which temper and qualify the whole; the consideration, the forbearance, the patriotism and the common sense, which in the English system go far towards reconciling seeming contradictions, and towards avoiding mere abstract difficulties." Mr. Papineau himself seems to have had very little genuine statesmanship. He knew that there were many grievances which needed removal, but he does not seem to have had any conception of the true remedy. He could not avoid seeing that the acts of the Assembly were nullified by an irresponsible set of officials, but his only method of correcting this evil in the body politic was to make the Legislative Council elective. This plan he was never tired of advocating. It did not occur to him that the true remedy, was to make the Council responsible to the Assembly, and when that idea was suggested to him he pronounced it impracticable. Yet in less than ten years from the time when he pronounced this judgment Responsible Government was a reality. Meanwhile he continued to inflame the French Canadian populace with harangues about liberty, equality, and fraternity. Some of the older and wiser began to suspect that their Louis Joseph was not the great statesman they had fondly believed him to be, and that his passionate rhapsodies might possibly get him into trouble some day. He had still, however, a large and enthusiastic following, more especially [Pg 203]of young men, to whom his burning invective had all the significance of an oracle. He began to preach Republicanism, and on one occasion proclaimed that Republican institutions would eventually prevail throughout the whole of the American continent—nay, that America was destined to furnish Republics to the Old World. In an old and well-established community, where people are educated to think for themselves, such vapourings are harmless, and at the present day such language as this, addressed to a Canadian audience, would be its own antidote. But the audiences before which Mr. Papineau's harangues were delivered were for the most part composed of illiterate people, entirely devoid of political discrimination, and ready to be led hither and thither at the will of any one who could for the time gain their ear. Mr. Papineau had very little true political sagacity, but as compared with those whom he addressed his knowledge was wide and various. It is only necessary, however, in order to show how little he had learned in the course of his legislative experience, to refer to his addresses to his constituents. In one of these he enjoined the electors to purchase no article whatever which had been imported from Great Britain. In another he referred to the British proclivities of the Bank officials throughout the Province, and advised his hearers to take no bank notes for the future, and to demand specie for such as they then had on hand. Then came the famous Ninety-two Resolutions—a document which has justly been characterized as more famous by reason of the debate and the passions to which it gave rise than for any inherent excellence, or for any convincing exposition of the duties of statesmanship. As matter of fact, these resolutions were conceived by feeble and unpractical minds. They bristled with alleged grievances, but foreshadowed no plan whereby those grievances might be redressed. They were passed by the Assembly, however, and transmitted to Great Britain, where the Imperial Parliament was also prayed to impeach the Governor, Lord Aylmer. The supplies were not voted, and the Governor prorogued the House. Then followed a series of foolish demonstrations organized by Mr. Papineau, by which the public peace was several times seriously menaced. Lord Aylmer was succeeded by Lord Gosford, who tried to conciliate Mr. Papineau and his adherents, but without success. It was evident that there would be a rebellion. In the autumn of 1837 the crisis arrived. Risings took place simultaneously in several parts of the Province. A central committee, with Papineau at its head, was formed in Montreal, where the "Sons of Liberty" paraded the streets and contemned British authority. Then Papineau for the first time perceived what a dangerous game he had been playing. He had lighted a fire which he could not extinguish, and which bade fair to consume him. The Government roused itself, and arrested nine of the ringleaders. The head and front of the rebellion, however, made good his escape to the United States, where he is said to have made an unsuccessful attempt to enlist the sympathies of the American Congress in the rebellion. After spending two years in the Republic he repaired to France, where he remained eight years, passing most of his time in Paris. On the proclamation of an amnesty, in 1847, he returned to Canada, where he was soon afterwards elected to a seat in the United Parliament. He again appeared in the House as leader of the Opposition, but it was soon apparent that he was no longer dangerous. Mr. Lafontaine, the head of the Lower Canadian Administration, had nothing to fear from an opponent to whom age and experience had brought but scant access of political wisdom. "His countrymen," says the writer already quoted from, "had learned, in a different school, under a wiser teacher, [Pg 204]the way to combine the two great principles of constitutional government, loyalty to the throne and responsibility to the people, and to utilize the peace, welfare, and happiness of the state. The embittered incidents of less happy times were gradually moving towards the grave of perished recollections. Politic men declined to recall them, and patriotic men cared not to dim the brightness of hope with the vapours of memory. Contented with what the present promised, they could speak philosophically of the past, and mingle a great deal of charity with their criticism. For the fire of adversity which had devastated the Province was also a fire of purification, and though it destroyed much that merciful men would have spared, it destroyed more that wise men would have got rid of; and thus it may have been that the life of the Province was saved by the blood which it lost. It was under such circumstances, when former things were passing or had passed away, that Mr. Papineau reappeared on the familiar stage of public affairs. Time had dealt gently with him. His eye was apparently undimmed, his figure unbent, and his intellect unclouded by the encroachments of age. If, politically speaking, he had learned nothing new, at least he had forgotten nothing that he had learned. The fond conceits of other days were as loyally cherished by him as if their wisdom had not been discredited by experience, and their fallacy established by events. Thus when 'the old man eloquent' swept those chords of passion which in less happy days had thrilled the hearts, fired the imaginations, and moved the minds of men to madness, he found either that his hand had lost its cunning or the instrument its charm—or else that the audience had lost its sympathy. The music, though eloquent in persuasive power, fell upon unheeding ears, or perchance on hearts from which the evil spirit had been exorcised by influences which derived their strength from deeds rather than from words."

In 1854 Mr. Papineau retired from public life, and spent the remaining years allotted to him in scholarly seclusion at his home on the banks of the Ottawa. He died on the 22nd of September, 1871.

In conclusion, it may be said that Mr. Papineau was a brilliant, albeit somewhat shallow, orator; an enthusiastic and most energetic member of Parliament; and the greatest political agitator that his Province has produced. He had read much, and possessed a great deal of acquired knowledge. It is reasonable to suppose that he meant well by his country, and that he believed himself to be a patriot. In urging his followers to engage in open rebellion he probably did not realize the magnitude of his offence, and that he was luring his best friends to their ruin. He was ever governed by his sympathies and prejudices rather than by his judgment, and was in no proper sense of the word a statesman. He has left a name on the pages of our national history, but the name is one which even at this day awakens few sympathies, and the political reputation which attaches to it is one which few will care strenuously to defend.

[Pg 205]



Judge Henry was born at Halifax, Nova Scotia, on the 30th of December, 1816. His father was the late Mr. Robert N. Henry, merchant, formerly of Antigonish, but during the closing years of his life a resident of Halifax, where he held various public offices. The son was educated at the Government High School at Halifax, which he attended for many years. Upon leaving school he chose the legal profession as his future calling in life, and studied law in the office of the Hon. Alexander McDougall. He was called to the Bar of his native Province in November, 1840, and entered upon the practice of his profession at Antigonish, but soon afterwards removed to the capital. He took a warm interest in the political questions of the day, and had not been long at the Bar before he was elected to represent his native county in the Legislative Assembly. He sat in the House, as representative of that constituency, for a continuous period of about twenty-six years. He espoused the Liberal side, and was a strenuous supporter of the late Mr. Howe, in whose efforts to secure Responsible Government he warmly participated. He soon won a high position at the Bar, and was engaged in many of the most important causes which came before the courts of Nova Scotia in those days. Upon the meeting of Parliament early in 1848 he seconded a motion of the late Mr. James Boyle Uniacke, as an amendment to the Address, expressive of a want of confidence in the Executive Council. The amendment was carried, the Council resigned, and a new Administration was formed. Next year Mr. Henry accepted a seat in the Executive Council, and was created a Q.C. He took a foremost part in shaping the legislation of the next two sessions, voting as an independent member. Upon the reorganization of the Government on the 3rd of April, 1854, under the auspices of the Hon.—now Sir—William Young, the present Chief Justice of Nova Scotia, Mr. Henry became Solicitor-General, and held that position about three years, when he succeeded the late Hon. J. W. Johnston as Provincial Secretary. He held the Secretaryship only a little more than a year, when he resigned his post, owing to his want of sympathy with his leader on the Roman Catholic question. He thenceforward arrayed himself on the side of the Opposition, and during the rest of his political career was practically identified with the Conservative Party. He again became Solicitor-General upon the accession to power of the Johnston-Tupper Administration; and held the same office in Mr. Johnston's Cabinet from 1863 to 1864, when he succeeded Mr. Johnston as Attorney-General. He retained the latter position until the accomplishment of Confederation in 1867. In the Confederation movement he heartily sympathized, and was one of the delegates on behalf of his native Province at the Charlottetown and Quebec Conferences held [Pg 206]in 1864. He also attended the final Convention in London, England, in 1866, when the terms of Union of the Provinces were definitively settled.

His espousal of Confederation was destined to be the means of severing his political connection with his native county of Antigonish, which he had represented ever since 1841. Upon presenting himself to his old constituents for election to the House of Commons in 1867, he, for the first time in his life, sustained a defeat at the polls. He was also an unsuccessful candidate for the representation of Richmond in 1869. During the following six years he did not take any active part in politics, but devoted himself to his profession. Various judicial appointments in his native Province were offered to him, and declined. His business was large and profitable, and his income must have been considerably larger than it would have been had he accepted a seat on the Provincial Bench. On the 8th of October, 1875, he was offered a seat on the Bench as one of the Puisné Judges of the newly constituted Supreme Court of the Dominion. He accepted this offer, and removed to Ottawa, where he has ever since resided.

In 1841, immediately after his call to the Bar of Nova Scotia, he married Miss Sophia Caroline McDonald, who survived her marriage about four years. In 1850 he married his second wife, who was Miss Christiana Macdonald, daughter of Mr. Hugh Macdonald, of Antigonish.

Judge Henry's name is identified with various important measures of Law Reform in Nova Scotia, and has always been regarded as a high authority on constitutional questions. He took a conspicuous part in the revision of the Provincial Statutes. In 1865 he was sent by the Province to England, in connection with important railway negotiations; and in 1866 he was sent to Washington to assist in the negotiations which were then pending for the renewal of the Reciprocity Treaty. He was several times Mayor of Halifax.

[Pg 207]



Towards the close of last century there was in the city of London, England, a prominent mercantile house which carried on business under the style of "J. Thomson, T. Bonar & Co." The branch of commerce to which this house chiefly devoted its attention was the Russian trade. It had existed, under various styles, for more than a hundred years, and had built up so extensive a trade as to have a branch establishment at the Russian capital. The senior partner of the firm was John Thomson of Waverley Abbey and Roehampton, in the county of Surrey. In the year 1820 this gentleman assumed the name of Poulett—in remembrance of his mother, who was heiress of a branch of the family of that name—and he was afterwards known as John Poulett Thomson. In 1871 he married Miss Charlotte Jacob, daughter of a physician at Salisbury. By this lady he had a numerous family, consisting of nine children. The youngest of these, Charles Edward Poulett Thomson, destined to be the first governor of United Canada, and to be raised to the peerage under the title of Baron Sydenham, was born on the 13th of September, 1799, at the family seat in Surrey—Waverley Abbey, above mentioned. His mother had long been in delicate health, and at the time of his birth was so feeble as to give rise to much solicitude as to her chances of recovery. She finally rallied, but for some months she led the life of an invalid. Her feebleness reflected itself in the constitution of her son, who never attained to much physical strength. The feebleness of his body was doubtless increased by the nervous activity of his intellect, which constantly impelled him to mental feats incompatible with his delicate frame. It may be said that he passed through the forty-two years which made up the measure of his life in a chronic state of bodily infirmity. The fret and worry incidental to an ambitious parliamentary and official career doubtless also contributed their share to the shortening of his life.

His childhood was marked by a sprightly grace and beauty which made him a general favourite. In his fourth year he was for a time the especial pet of His Majesty King George III. He made the King's acquaintance at Weymouth, where, with other members of his family, he spent part of the summer of 1803. While walking on the Parade, in charge of his nurse, his beauty and sprightliness attracted the notice of His Majesty, who was also spending the season there, in the hope of regaining that physical and mental vigour which never returned to him. The King was much taken with the vivacity and pert replies of the handsome little fellow, and insisted on a daily visit from him. The child's conquest over the royal heart was complete, and His Majesty seemed to be never so well pleased as when he had little Master Thomson in his arms, [Pg 208]carrying him about, and showing him whatever amusing sights the place afforded. On one occasion the King was standing on the shore near the pier-head, in conversation with Mr. Pitt, who had come down from London to confer with His Majesty about affairs of State. His Majesty was about to embark in the royal yacht for a short cruise, and, as was usual at that time of the day, he had Master Thomson in his arms. When just on the point of embarking, he suddenly placed the child in the arms of Mr. Pitt, saying hurriedly, "Is not this a fine boy, Pitt? Take him in your arms, Pitt—take him in your arms. Charming boy, isn't he?" Pitt complied with the royal request with the best grace he could, and carried the child in his arms to the door of his lodgings.

At the age of seven, Master Thomson was sent to a private school at Hanwell, whence, three years afterwards, he was transferred to the charge of the Rev. Mr. Wooley, at Middleton. After spending a short time there, he became a pupil of the Rev. Mr. Church, at Hampton, where he remained until he had nearly completed his sixteenth year. He then left school—his education, of course, being far from complete—and entered the service of his father's firm. It was determined that he should begin his mercantile career in the St. Petersburg branch, and in the summer of 1815 he was despatched to Russia. His fine manners and address, combined with the wealth and influence of the firm to which he was allied, obtained him access to the best society of St. Petersburg, where he spent more than two years. In the autumn of 1817, upon his recovery from a rather serious illness, it was thought desirable that he should spend the coming winter in a milder climate than that of St. Petersburg, and he returned to his native land. The next two or three years were spent in travelling on the Continent with other members of his family. He then entered the counting-house in London, where he spent about eighteen months. This brings us down to the year 1821. In the spring of that year he was admitted as a partner in the firm, and once more went out to St. Petersburg, where he again remained nearly two years. He then entered upon a somewhat prolonged tour through central and southern Russia, and thence across to Vienna, where he spent the winter of 1823-4, and part of the following spring. Towards the end of April he set out for Paris, where his mother was confined by illness, and where she breathed her last almost immediately after her son's arrival. Mr. Thomson soon afterwards returned to London, where he settled down as one of the managing partners of the commercial establishment. In this capacity he displayed the same energy which subsequently distinguished his political and diplomatic career. He took a lively interest in the political questions of the day; more especially in those relating to commercial matters. He was a pronounced Liberal, and a strenuous advocate of free-trade. In the summer of 1825 advances were made to him to become the Liberal candidate for Dover at the next election. He responded favourably to these advances, and was in due course returned by a considerable majority. One of his earliest votes in the House of Commons was in favour of free-trade. He soon became known as a ready and effective speaker, and as one whose judgment on commercial questions was entitled to respect. His zeal for the principles of his Party was also conspicuous, and when Earl Grey formed his Administration in November, 1830, the office of Vice-President of the Board of Trade, together with the Treasurership of the Navy, was offered to and accepted by Mr. Thomson. He was at the same time sworn in as a member of the Privy Council. The acceptance of the former office rendered it necessary for him to sever his connection with the commercial firm of which he had [Pg 209]up to this time been a member, and he never again engaged in mercantile business of any kind. By this time, indeed, he had established for himself a reputation of no common order. The part he had taken in the debates of the House, and in the proceedings of its Committees, on questions connected with commerce and finance, had proved him to possess not only a clear practical acquaintance with the details of these subjects, but also principles of an enlarged and liberal character, and powers of generalization and a comprehensiveness of view rarely found combined in so young a man. The next three or four years were busy ones with him. It will be remembered that this was the era of the Reform Bill. Mr. Thomson did not take a prominent part in the discussions on that measure, his time being fully occupied with the financial and fiscal policy, but he put forth the weight of his influence in favour of the Bill. His principal efforts, during his tenure of office, were directed to the simplification and amendment of the Customs Act, and to an ineffectual attempt to negotiate a commercial treaty with France. After the dissolution in 1831 he was reelected for Dover. He was, however, also elected—without any canvass or solicitation on his part—for Manchester, the most important manufacturing constituency in the kingdom; and he chose to sit for the latter. In 1834 he succeeded to the Presidency of the Board of Trade, as successor to Lord Auckland. Then followed Earl Grey's resignation and Lord Melbourne's accession. On the dismissal of the Ministry in November, Mr. Thomson was, of course, left without office, but on Lord Melbourne's re-accession in the following spring he was reinstated in the Presidency of the Board of Trade—an office which he continued to hold until his appointment as Governor-General of Canada.

Early in 1836 his health had become so seriously affected by his official labours that he began to recognize the necessity of resigning his office, and of accepting some post which would not so severely tax his energies. He continued to discharge his official duties, however, until the reconstruction of Lord Melbourne's Administration in 1839, when he signified his wish to be relieved. He was offered a choice between the office of Chancellor of the Exchequer and that of Governor-General of Canada. He chose the latter, and having received his appointment and been sworn in before the Privy Council, he set sail from Portsmouth for Quebec on the 13th of September, which was the fortieth anniversary of his birth. He reached his destination after a tedious, stormy voyage, and assumed the reins of government on the 19th of October. He was well received in this country. The mercantile community of Canada were especially disposed to favour the appointment of a man who had himself been bred to commercial pursuits, and who would be likely to feel a more than ordinary interest in promoting commercial interests.

Canada was at this time in a state of transition. Owing to the strenuous exertions of the Reform Party in this country, seconded by Lord Durham's famous "Report," the concession of Responsible Government and the Union of the Provinces had been determined upon by the Home Ministry. It was Mr. Thomson's mission to see these two most desirable objects carried out. He had a most difficult part to play. As a pronounced Liberal, he naturally had the confidence of the Reform Party, but there were a few prominent members of that Party who did not approve of the Union project, and he felt that he could not count upon their cordial support. True, the opponents of the measure constituted a very small minority of the Reform Party generally; but there was another Party from whom the strongest opposition was to be expected—the Family Compact. This faction [Pg 210]was not yet extinct, though its days were numbered. It still controlled the Legislative Council, which body had already recorded a vote hostile to the Union. The situation was one calling for the exercise of great tact, and the new Governor-General proved himself equal to the occasion. He made no changes in the composition either of the Special Council of the Lower Province—a body formed under Imperial sanction by Sir John Colborne—or in that of the Legislative Council of Upper Canada. After a short stay at Quebec he proceeded to Montreal, and convoked the Special Council on the 11th of November. He laid before this body the views of the Imperial Ministry relating to the Union of the Provinces and the concession of Responsible Government. By the time the Council had been in session two days the majority of the members were fully in accord with the Governor's views, and a series of resolutions were passed as a basis of Union. This disposed of the question, so far as the Lower Province was concerned, and after discharging the Council from further attendance, Mr. Thomson proceeded to Toronto to gain the assent of the Upper Canadian Legislature. With the Assembly no difficulty was anticipated, but to gain the assent of the Tory majority in the Legislative Council would evidently be no easy matter, for the success of the Governor's policy involved the triumph of Reform principles, and the inevitable downfall of the Family Compact. The Governor's tact, however, placed the latter faction in an anomalous position. For several years past the Tory Party had been boasting of their success in putting down the Rebellion, and had raised a loud and senseless howl of loyalty. They were never weary of proclaiming their devotion to the Imperial will, irrespective of selfish considerations. This cry, which had been perpetually resounding throughout the Province during the last three years, supplied the Governor with the means of bending to his pleasure those who had raised it. He delivered a message to the Legislature in which he defined the Imperial policy, and appealed in the strongest terms to those professions of loyalty which the Tory majority in the Council were constantly proclaiming. He also published a circular despatch from Lord John Russell, the tone of which was an echo of that of his own message. The Tory majority were thus placed on the horns of a dilemma. They must either display their much-vaunted loyalty by acceding to the Imperial will, or they must admit that their blatant professions had been mere party-cries to deceive the electors. Their opposition, moreover, would render necessary the resignation of their offices. With the best grace they could, they announced their intention to support the Imperial policy. The Assembly passed resolutions in accordance with the spirit of the Governor's message. Nothing further was necessary to render the Union an accomplished fact, except the sanction of the Imperial Parliament. A Union Bill, framed under the supervision of Sir James Stuart, Chief Justice of Lower Canada, was forwarded to England, where, in a slightly modified form, it was passed by both Houses, and received the royal assent. Owing to a suspending clause in the Bill, it did not come into operation until the 10th of February, 1841, when, by virtue of the Governor-General's proclamation, the measure took effect, and the Union of the Canadas was complete.

Soon after the close of the session of the Upper Canadian Legislature, Mr. Thomson was raised to the peerage by the title of Baron Sydenham, of Sydenham in Kent, and Toronto in Canada. The greater part of the following autumn was spent by him in travelling about through the Upper Province. He seems to have been greatly pleased both with the country and the people. [Pg 211]The following extract from a private letter, written from the shores of the Bay of Quinté on the 18th of September, is worth quoting, as showing the impressions of an intelligent observer at that time:—"Amherstburg, Sandwich, River St. Clair, Lake Huron, Goderich, Chatham, London, Woodstock, Brantford, Simcoe, the Talbot Road and Settlement, Hamilton, Dundas, and so back to Toronto—you can follow me on a map. From Toronto across Lake Simcoe to Penetanguishene on Lake Huron again, and back to Toronto, which I left again last night for the Bay of Quinté, all parties uniting in addresses at every place, full of confidence in my Government, and of a determination to forget their former disputes. Escorts of two and three hundred farmers on horseback at every place from township to township, with all the etceteras of guns, music, and flags. What is of more importance, my candidates everywhere taken for the ensuing elections. In short, such unanimity and confidence I never saw, and it augurs well for the future.... The fact is that the truth of my original notion of the people of this country is now confirmed. The mass only wanted the vigorous interference of a well-intentioned Government, strong enough to control both the extreme parties, and to proclaim wholesome truths and act for the benefit of the country at large, in defiance of ultras on either side. But, apart from all this political effort, I am delighted to have seen this part of the country—I mean the great district, nearly as large as Ireland, placed between the three lakes, Erie, Ontario, and Huron. You can conceive nothing finer. The most magnificent soil in the world; four feet of vegetable mould; a climate, certainly the best in North America. The greater part of it admirably watered. In a word, there is land enough and capabilities enough for some millions of people, and for one of the finest Provinces in the world. The most perfect contrast to that miserable strip of land along the St. Lawrence called Lower Canada, which has given so much trouble. I shall fix the capital of the United Provinces in this one, of course. Kingston will most probably be the place. But there is everything to be done there yet, to provide accommodation for the meeting of the Assembly in the spring."

As suggested in the foregoing extract, Kingston was fixed upon as the seat of Government of the United Provinces, and the Legislature assembled there on the 13th of June, 1841. The Governor-General's speech at the opening of the session was marked by tact, moderation, and good sense. A strong Opposition, however, soon began to manifest itself, and Mr. Neilson, of Quebec, moved an amendment to the Address directly condemnatory of the Union. The amendment was defeated by a vote of 50 to 25. Throughout the session nearly all the Government measures received the support of the House, an important exception being the French Election Bill. Meanwhile the state of Lord Sydenham's health was such as to render his duties very difficult for him, and as the great object of his mission to Canada had been successfully accomplished, he resolved to return home at the close of the session. He forwarded his resignation to the Home Secretary, having already received leave of absence which would obviate the necessity of his remaining at his post until the acceptance of his resignation. Of this leave, however, he was not destined to avail himself. On the 4th of September he felt himself well enough to ride out on horseback. While returning homeward he put his horse to a canter, just as he began to ascend a little hill not far from Alwington House, his residence, near the lake shore. When about half way up the hill, the horse stumbled and fell, crushing his rider's right leg beneath his weight. The animal rose to its feet and dragged Lord Sydenham—whose [Pg 212]right foot was fast in the stirrup—for a short distance. One of his aides, who just then rode up, rescued the Governor from his perilous position and conveyed him home, when it was found that the principal bone of his right leg, above the knee, had sustained an oblique fracture, and that the limb had also received a severe wound from being bruised against a sharp stone, which had cut deeply, and lacerated the flesh and sinews. Notwithstanding these serious injuries, and the shock which his nervous system had sustained, his medical attendants did not at first anticipate danger to his life. He continued free from fever, and his wounds seemed to be going on satisfactorily; but he was debilitated by perpetual sleeplessness and inability to rest long in one position. On the ninth day after his injury dangerous symptoms began to manifest themselves, and it soon became apparent that he would not recover. After a fortnight of great suffering, he breathed his last on Sunday, the 19th, having completed his forty-second year six days previously.

"His fame," says his biographer, "must rest not so much on what he did or said in Parliament as on what he did and proposed to do out of it—on his consistent and to a great degree successful efforts to expose the fallacy of the miscalled Protective system, and gradually, but effectively, to root it out of the statute-book, and thereby to free the universal industry of Britain from the mischievous shackles imposed by an ignorant and mistaken selfishness."

His Canadian administration may be looked upon as a brief and brilliant episode in his public career. In private life he was much loved and highly esteemed. His amiable disposition and pleasing manner excited the warmest attachment among those who were admitted to his intimacy, and in every circumstance that affected their happiness he always appeared to take a lively personal interest. In the midst of his occupations he always had time for works of kindness and charity. In a letter to an idle friend who had been remiss in correspondence, he once said, "Of course you have no time. No one ever has who has nothing to do." His assistance was always promptly and eagerly afforded whenever he could serve his friends, or confer a favour on a deserving object. His integrity and sense of honour were high, and his disinterestedness was almost carried to excess. The remuneration for his official services was lower than that of any other official of equal standing, and far below his deserts. Never having married, however, owing to an early disappointment, his needs were moderate, and his private fortune considerable. His person and manner were very prepossessing, and his aptitude and acquired knowledge great. He was very popular in the social circle, and his death left a void among his friends which was never filled.

Rev. Isaac Hellmuth, signed as I. Huron
Rev. Isaac Hellmuth, signed as I. Huron

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Bishop Hellmuth is the son of Jewish parents, and was born near Warsaw, the former capital of Poland, on the 14th of December, 1817. He received his collegiate training at the famous University of Breslau, which was originally founded in 1702 as a Jesuit College. While in attendance at this seat of learning he became seriously impressed upon the subject of religion, and, after much self-communing, abandoned the faith of his ancestors. In order to avoid the obloquy which would inevitably attach to him at home in consequence of his relinquishment of Judaism, he repaired to England, where, in 1841, he made a public profession of Christianity. He embraced the doctrines of the Church of England, and entered upon a course of study with a view to taking holy orders. He won golden opinions from many eminent ecclesiastics, and was highly esteemed for his evident sincerity and earnestness. The late Dr. Sumner, Archbishop of Canterbury, advised him to go to Canada, and upon his professing his willingness to act upon the advice, the Doctor furnished him with very flattering testimonials as to his character and ability. Similar testimonials were voluntarily furnished by other eminent persons, both in the Church and out of it; and in 1844 Mr. Hellmuth, then in his 27th year, crossed the Atlantic, and took up his abode in this country. In 1846 he was ordained Deacon, and, later on, Priest, by the Bishop of Quebec. The first eight years of his life in Canada were spent in the discharge of his duties as one of the professors in the University of Bishop's College, Lennoxville, and as incumbent of St. Peter's Church, Sherbrooke. He was then appointed General Superintendent for the Colonial and Continental Church Society in the British North American Colonies. While occupying this position, in 1861, he was chosen by the late Dr. Cronyn, Bishop of Huron, to proceed to England to collect funds for the establishment and endowment of a theological college in the Diocese of Huron. The establishment of such an institution was undertaken by Dr. Cronyn with a view to counteracting what he deemed the mischievous teaching in Trinity College, Toronto. So strongly did he feel on the subject that he openly formulated charges of false doctrine, which were tried before the assembled Canadian Bishops. Though the decision of the majority of his fellow-dignitaries was against him, Bishop Cronyn determined to do what he could to keep his own diocese as free as possible from influences which he believed to be pernicious. He conceived the idea of establishing a college wherein candidates for the ministry in his own diocese might receive a purely evangelical training. He fixed upon the subject of this sketch as a suitable emissary to Great Britain, to solicit pecuniary aid. Having been created Archdeacon of Huron, Dr. [Pg 214]Hellmuth set forth on his mission, which was entirely successful, the necessary funds having been collected in a very short time. On his return, in 1862, Dr. Hellmuth was appointed Principal and Professor of Divinity in the new institution, which owes so much to his energy, promptitude, and liberality. It was opened in 1863 as the Huron Theological College. To Dr. Hellmuth and a few of his friends the diocese is chiefly indebted for the erection of a chapel in connection with the college, built as a memorial to the late General Thomas Evans, whose daughter Catharine Dr. Hellmuth married in 1847.

When Bishop Cronyn retired from duty as Rector of St. Paul's Cathedral, London, Dr. Hellmuth was appointed Dean and Rector. He laboured assiduously for the public good, and was soon universally beloved. He established the Church of England Young Men's Christian Association, and took an active part in various charitable, religious, and educational undertakings. The foundation of Hellmuth College, which was opened in 1865, is mainly due to his energy and liberality, as is also the scheme which resulted in the Hellmuth Ladies' College, which was inaugurated by Prince Arthur on the 23rd of September, 1869. Of the latter institution he is himself President, and his assiduous labours on its behalf, aided by the efforts of a large and accomplished staff of teachers, have raised it to a high pitch of efficiency, and it enjoys an enviable reputation among the educational establishments of the Dominion.

In July, 1871, owing to Bishop Cronyn's advancing years and somewhat feeble state of health, it was considered desirable to elect a Coadjutor Bishop. Dr. Hellmuth's great services in the cause of religion and education, no less than his personal popularity, pointed him out as the most suitable candidate for the position, and he was elected by a large majority over all other candidates for the office. He received the title of Bishop of Norfolk, and was consecrated by the Metropolitan in the presence of the Bishops of Toronto, Ontario, Ohio, and Michigan. On the death of Bishop Cronyn a few months later, Dr. Hellmuth succeeded him as Bishop of Huron, and has ever since continued to direct the affairs of the diocese. His tenure of office has been marked by the same earnestness which he has ever been wont to display in the discharge of his sacred functions. His efforts for the promotion of advanced education have been vigorous and unceasing, and it is as a zealous worker in the cause of education that he will be best known to posterity. Soon after his consecration he began to interest himself in the establishment of a Western University at London, to which he personally contributed the sum of ten thousand dollars. The project has been prosecuted with vigour and success, and promises to be the crowning work of his useful life. As a theologian, his views are liberal and enlightened, and he enjoys a great measure of popularity with the ministry of other denominations than his own.

Notwithstanding his multifarious occupations, he has found time to write several theological works which are highly esteemed by writers on kindred subjects. In 1862 he published a reply to a letter of the Bishop of Montreal and Metropolitan of Canada, addressed to the Bishops and clergy of the United Church of England and Ireland in Canada. Several years later he published, under the title of "The Divine Dispensations," a series of exegetical and controversial lectures which had previously been delivered by him to the students of Huron College. These lectures, which treat of the genuineness and authenticity of the Pentateuch, and are directed against the teachings of Bishop Colenso, have been widely read, and are said to be characterized by great learning and depth of thought.

Arthur Sturgis Hardy
Arthur Sturgis Hardy
Lith. by Rolph Smith Ltd Toronto from Photo by Notman & Fraser

[Pg 215]




Mr. Hardy was born in the little village of Mount Pleasant—known to the Post Office authorities as "Mohawk"—in what is now the county of Brant, Ontario, on the 14th of December, 1837. His father, Mr. Russell Hardy, a gentleman of American lineage, cultivated a farm in the village at that time, but subsequently removed to Brantford, the county town, where he engaged in commercial pursuits. Young Arthur's childhood and early youth were passed in Mount Pleasant, and it was there that he received his first educational training. The local schools in the village enjoyed a deservedly high reputation in those days, and there was probably no other village in Canada so well provided in that respect. As a scholar, Arthur Hardy displayed much quickness of perception, and an ardent desire for knowledge. He was distinguished above most of his fellow-scholars by his fondness for, and proficiency in, elocutionary exercises. After his removal from Mount Pleasant he attended school in Brantford, and, later still, spent several terms at Rockwood Academy. Having chosen the legal profession as his career in life, he entered the office of his uncle, Mr. Henry A. Hardy, of Brantford, and began the study of the law. The last two years of his clerkship were passed in the office of Messrs. Patterson & Harrison, in Toronto. He was admitted as an attorney in Trinity Term, 1861, and he immediately afterwards formed a partnership with his uncle, and began the practice of his profession in Brantford. Four years later, in Easter Term, 1865, he was called to the Bar, where he soon began to take a prominent place.

For more than ten years before this time, Mr. E. B. Wood, the present Chief-Justice of Manitoba, had been the one man of real weight and power at the Brantford Bar. He was all-powerful with juries, and it may almost be said that he could lead them whithersoever he would. It is a simple fact that, by the mere force of his advocacy, he obtained many a verdict which was not justified by the evidence. He was personally known to almost every juryman in the county. The influence exercised by him was the legitimate outcome of a master-mind and a determined will acting upon weaker ones; and the weaker ones included pretty nearly every man who came within his purview. He knew and felt his power, and was rather proud of it. Without any premeditated intention to be offensive, his demeanour at the Bar, more especially towards his local contemporaries, sometimes seemed to savour of patronage and superciliousness. He affected the de haut en bas. This demeanour had long been resented, in a weak, desultory, ineffective fashion, by the members of the local Bar; but it cannot be said that his supremacy was ever disputed with any approach to success until Arthur Hardy entered the forensic arena. [Pg 216]It is no disparagement to Mr. Hardy to say that he has never manifested powers of mind or legal capacity equal to those of Mr. Wood, because as much might truthfully be said of pretty nearly every young, man in the Dominion. But Mr. Hardy has always possessed a good deal of independence of mind, and from the outset was not disposed to submit tamely to what he doubtless regarded as professional arrogance on the part of his senior. He was conscious of possessing a fair knowledge of his profession, and of the ability to conduct a case with justice to his client. It so happened that the first brief held by him was in a case which had attracted a good deal of public attention before it came to trial. Mr. Wood was arrayed against him, and, with the self-confidence begotten of his large professional experience and almost uninterrupted success, had not thoroughly mastered the details of his case. Mr. Hardy, on the other hand, had gone into his brief with youthful enthusiasm and a determination to win. It was precisely one of those cases, the success of which depend not so much upon their intrinsic merits as upon their manipulation by counsel. A great many witnesses were examined, and the trial extended over several days. The result was a verdict for Mr. Hardy's client, and an established local reputation for Mr. Hardy himself. From this time forward the latter had no lack of clients. His knowledge increased, his intellect expanded, and he settled down to steady, hard work. His confidence in himself was great, and was generally borne out by results. For several years he and Mr. Wood were constantly pitted against each other, and Mr. Hardy continued to fully hold his own. In course of time the Nestor of the Brantford Bar came to recognize his youthful opponent as a foeman worthy of his steel. Much of the latter's success was doubtless due to his strict attention to details, and to a pleasing manner of address which conciliated juries. Disdaining the ponderousness of his rival, the prevailing tone of his efforts at the Bar is light and airy, and he can contrive to press a humorous story into his client's service with remarkably telling effect. In his more serious efforts, however, he has shewn that he can rise with an occasion, and can impart to his addresses a tone of genuine earnestness which are none the less effective from being charily employed. His practice has grown with his increasing years, and, like that of most country practitioners, has included every department of his profession, both civil and criminal. As a criminal counsel it fell to his lot to defend no fewer than sixteen prisoners during the two years from 1865 to 1867, all of whom were charged with capital offences. Of these sixteen, only one was convicted, and even he escaped the extreme penalty of the law. Such an experience we believe to be altogether exceptional in the career of professional men; and when it is borne in mind that Mr. Hardy is not a criminal lawyer par excellence, the only conclusion to be arrived at is that such success must be in a great measure attributable to his own abilities. His position at the Bar has long been fully assured. In 1876, when thirty-nine years of age, he attained the dignity of a silk gown, and he has since represented the Crown at assizes in various parts of this Province.

Mr. Hardy has always taken a keen interest in political questions, but for some years after his call to the Bar he was too busily employed in building up a successful professional business to admit of his taking any very active part in politics. He was, both by training and predilection, a Reformer. He had served on several election committees, even in his student days; but he seemed to be in no hurry to embrace a political life, feeling assured, probably, that his time must come. The truth seems to be [Pg 217]that in politics, as well as in his professional career, he was somewhat overshadowed by the massive figure of Mr. Wood, who was also on the Reform side. When Mr. Wood joined the Sandfield Macdonald Coalition Government, in 1867, it was believed that Arthur Hardy's time had come. Mr. Hardy, however, felt that he was still young, and that his professional status was not sufficiently assured to justify him in giving up the greater part of his time to public life. He wisely rejected the pressing overtures made to him to enter Parliament, and continued to devote himself to the duties of his profession. He took a very active part in the canvass during the summer, however, and his exertions did much to reduce Mr. Wood's majority. Nearly six years more were to elapse before he was to conduct an election campaign on his own account. In the month of March, 1873, Mr. Wood, the sitting member, was appointed to the position which he now occupies, and the constituency of South Brant was thus left without a representative. Mr. Hardy felt that he could now afford to follow the bent of his inclinations, and allowed himself to be put in nomination. His opponent was Mr. J. J. Hawkins, who was, like himself, a local candidate. The contest which followed was marked by strong exhibitions of political feeling on both sides, for there were several grave public questions under discussion, and the Local Government was on its trial. There had been a recent increase in official salaries, and a considerable increase in the estimates. These, also, were the days of the Canoe-Couch scandal, and there were various small matters which answered admirably to serve the purpose of a hostile party cry during a rural election campaign. Mr. Hardy's canvass was rendered all the more arduous from the fact that many of the leaders on the opposite side went up to the county to assist his opponent, whereas the weight of the contest on his own side had to be borne by his own shoulders. Those shoulders, however, were broad, and fitted for the burden. At the close of a contest which was conducted with unusual acrimony, Mr. Hardy was elected by a majority of 189 votes. Upon the assembling of the Legislature in the following year he took his seat, and all through the session afforded a vigorous support to Mr. Mowat's Government. At the general election in January, 1875, no candidate was found with sufficient temerity to oppose him, and he was elected by acclamation. After his acceptance of office, in March, 1877, he enjoyed a similar triumph upon returning to his constituents for reëlection. At the last general election, in June, 1879, he was again opposed by a local candidate, but the latter never had any prospect of success, and Mr. Hardy was returned by a majority of 392.

Among the principal official measures inaugurated by Mr. Hardy, and successfully carried through the House during his tenure of office, may be enumerated the Civil Service and License Amendment Acts of 1878; the Jurors' Amendment Act, and the Municipal Act of 1879; and the Division Courts Amendment Act of last session.

Mr. Hardy's characteristics as a speaker have been sufficiently indicated in the remarks on his professional career. As to the sincerity of his political convictions, no one, so far as we know, has ever ventured to express any doubt. He is endowed with great industry, and has given the highest satisfaction in the discharge of his official duties. It may be added that he makes few or no personal enemies, and that he has an ingratiating manner which greatly conduces to his popularity. With a fine constitution, a laudable ambition, and an intellect which has not yet ceased to grow, Mr. Hardy may look forward with some confidence to a highly successful public career.

On the 19th of January, 1870, Mr. Hardy married Mary, daughter of Mr. Justice Morrison, of Toronto.

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Sir Albert James Smith, one of the most eminent lawyers in the Maritime Provinces, was born at the village of Shediac, in the county of Westmoreland, New Brunswick, in the year 1824. He was educated at the County Grammar School, and upon leaving that institution became a student at law in the office of the late Edward Barron Chandler, who subsequently became Lieutenant-Governor of the Province. Having completed his studies, he was called to the Bar of New Brunswick in February, 1847, and settled down to the practice of his profession. He was successful with juries, and gained a large practice, which his friends advised him not to neglect for the uncertain pursuit of politics. In politics, however, he took a warm interest. The tone of his mind was that of a Liberal, and he allied himself with that Party, but neither then nor at any time subsequently was he a bitter or unsparing partisan, like many of his contemporaries in the Maritime Provinces in those days. He first entered public life in 1852, when he was elected to the Local Assembly as representative of his native county of Westmoreland, and in 1854, on the overthrow of the Conservative Government, he assisted Mr. Charles Fisher (now a Puisné Judge of the Supreme Court of New Brunswick), Mr. W. J. Ritchie (now Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of the Dominion), and Mr.—now the Hon. Sir Samuel—Tilley, in forming the first Liberal Administration in that Province. The Administration so formed, however, did not long retain power. A prohibitory liquor law was passed in 1855, which proved very distasteful to the people generally, and petitions on the subject were sent in to the Lieutenant-Governor from all parts of the Province. The Lieutenant-Governor remonstrated with the Administration, and threatened a dissolution. The Administration accordingly resigned, and at the next general election they experienced a defeat. They were defeated, however, almost solely on the prohibition question, which was the direct issue put before the electors during the campaign; and the Conservative Government which succeeded received but a frail support. The division of parties was so nearly equal that in 1857 a dead-lock ensued. For this state of things another general election was the only remedy. The result of the election was that the Government were defeated, and another Liberal Cabinet, of which Messrs. Smith, Fisher, and Tilley were members, was formed. In 1862 Mr. Smith, who had meantime attained to the professional rank of a Queen's Counsel, became Attorney-General, and held that office till 1863, when he resigned his seat in the Cabinet owing to a disagreement with his colleagues respecting the Intercolonial Railway. Five years previously (in 1858) he had been a co-delegate to England with the present Judge Fisher, on matters connected [Pg 219]with that line of road, the proposed construction of which had given rise to much negotiation and debate. A time was at hand, however, when all other questions were to give way to the one great question of Confederation. Mr. Smith opposed the scheme of the Quebec Conference with great energy, and on a dissolution taking place, in order to submit the proposition to the people, he addressed meetings in various parts of the country with considerable effect. The anti-Confederates triumphed at the polls, and the Government, which was favourable to Confederation, resigned, Mr. Smith being called upon to form a new Administration. This duty he discharged, and himself assumed the office of Attorney-General, which position he held about a year, when he retired, and his official career in connection with the affairs of New Brunswick terminated. In 1865 he went on a second public mission to England, his associate being the present Chief Justice Allen. In 1866 he was also a delegate to Washington, in conjunction with Messrs. Galt, Howland, and Henry, for the purpose of obtaining a renewal of reciprocity with the United States. The mission was a fruitless one, owing to the excessive demands made on behalf of the United States. During the same year Mr. Smith was offered the position of Chief Justice of New Brunswick, but did not see fit to accept it.

Albert James Smith
Albert James Smith
Lith. by Rolph Smith Ltd Toronto from Photo by W. J. Topley, Ottawa

Mr. Smith, ever since his first entry into public life, had represented his native county of Westmoreland in the Local Assembly. Confederation having been accomplished, he now offered himself to his old constituents as a candidate for the Dominion House of Commons. He was elected by a large majority, and has sat in the House of Commons for Westmoreland ever since. We may anticipate the course of events for a moment to briefly chronicle the fact that at the last general election, held on the 17th of September, 1878, he was returned by his constituents for the fourteenth time consecutively. On four occasions he has been returned by acclamation, and he has never sustained defeat. It is believed that his hold upon the sympathies of the electors is as strong at the present time as it has ever been, and that no candidate whatever could oppose him in Westmoreland with any prospect of success. His opponent at the last election was Mr. R. A. Chapman, upon whose behalf 1,928 votes were polled, as against 2,572 for Sir Albert.

During his career in the Local Assembly of New Brunswick, Mr. Smith was always distinguished as a Liberal. On entering the House of Commons, however, he came unpledged to either Party, and acted, until he took office in 1873, as a strictly independent member. The fact that he frequently voted with the Conservatives led to his antecedents being occasionally overlooked. When the Pacific scandal disclosures took place in 1873 Mr. Smith withdrew his confidence from the then-existing Government; and on their resignation taking place, Mr. Smith's political record marked him out as one of the two most fitting representatives of New Brunswick in the Cabinet formed by Mr. Mackenzie on the 7th of November following. He was sworn of the Privy Council, and he accepted the position of Minister of Marine and Fisheries. He continued at the head of that department during the five years' tenure of office of that Administration. While holding office he introduced and successfully carried through the House some important legislation respecting the Merchant Shipping Act. He was also the author of an amendment to the Deck Loads Act, whereby cattle are permitted to be carried as a deck-load, notwithstanding the provisions to the contrary contained in the Statute, 36 Victoria, chapter 56. He proved a very efficient Minister, and was highly esteemed by his colleagues. His affability of manner and readiness at all times to meet, [Pg 220]so far as practicable, the views of those with whom he had official relations, secured for him a large share of popularity. He is a ready speaker, and on many occasions proved himself well able to defend the policy of his own department and of the Government. Although he has been so many years in public life, and has been engaged during a large portion of that time in active political controversies, his speeches betray no tinge of bitterness, even towards those who are least scrupulous in their methods of assault. It may also be recorded that in 1873 he was offered the dignified position of Lieutenant-Governor of his native Province, but thought proper to decline that high honour.

Mr. Smith represented the Dominion Government before the arbitrators at the Fisheries Commission, which sat at Halifax from the 15th of June to the 23rd of November, 1877. The arbitration, as is well known, resulted in an award of five and a half millions of dollars to be paid by the United States Government to that of Great Britain, as compensation for the use of the Fisheries for a period of twelve years, six of which had then expired. This award gave great dissatisfaction to the people of the United States, and the American Government protested against it; but the money was finally paid over, after a great deal of delay. In consideration of his eminent services on this occasion, Mr. Smith was, on the 25th of May, 1878, created a Knight Commander of the Order of St. Michael and St. George. The Secretary of State for the Colonies in the Imperial Government, in a despatch announcing that Her Majesty had seen fit to confer this dignity upon him and Sir Alexander Galt, remarked that he "had much satisfaction in bringing under the special notice of Her Majesty the valuable assistance rendered by these gentlemen to the Imperial Government, and to that of the Dominion, in connexion with the Halifax Fisheries Commission;" and expressed his confidence that this recognition of their services would be highly appreciated by their fellow-subjects in Canada.

[Pg 221]



The Reverend Edward Hartley Dewart, although not a native of Canada, is a thorough Canadian by early adoption and hearty sympathy. For upwards of forty years he has been associated with her interests and identified with her fortunes; and for more than a quarter of a century few men have devoted themselves more actively than he to foster her rising institutions and to promote her prosperity. He was born in the county of Cavan, Ireland, in the year 1828. He is of mingled Scottish and English descent, his father's ancestors having come originally from Scotland, and his mother's from England. In 1834 he came with his parents to this country. The family settled in the county of Peterborough, Ontario, where he passed his boyhood and youth. His early opportunities for obtaining an education were few and unfavourable as compared with those of the present day, when first-class schools, provided with experienced and efficient teachers, may be found in all parts of the Province. This deprivation was sorely felt by him at the time, but the effects were largely counterbalanced by his incessant study, and by his fondness, amounting almost to a passion, for books. From his earliest years his love of reading attracted the attention of all who knew him. He had naturally an inquiring mind, and possessed an insatiable thirst for learning. Notwithstanding a tolerably good supply of useful literature with which his home was always stocked, he read in addition nearly all the books that he could borrow from the neighbours for miles around. Possessing also a remarkably retentive memory, when but a mere boy he had acquired a more accurate knowledge of Scripture History, and had read and digested more books—many of them requiring close study and attentive thought—than the majority of young men with much better opportunities for mental improvement. In the year 1848 he resolved to avail himself of greater educational advantages, and to qualify himself for a broader sphere of usefulness. He started from his secluded forest home to become a student at the Normal School in Toronto, which had been opened a few months previously for public instruction. With characteristic energy and determination he travelled the whole of the distance, one hundred and twenty miles, on foot. After prosecuting his studies with remarkable success, he returned home at the end of the academic year, taught school for about fourteen months, and came back again to attend lectures for another session. His ability and assiduity as a student soon rendered his proficiency so marked in all his studies that he was frequently employed by the professors to assist them in teaching classes. Before quitting the institution that session, on the recommendation of the late Mr. Thomas Jaffray Robertson, he engaged as teacher of the school at Dunnville, Ontario, where he [Pg 222]taught for two years. In 1851 he was called to the work of the Christian ministry in connection with the Wesleyan Methodist Church, of which he had been a member since 1843. He commenced his ministerial labours on the St. Thomas circuit, some months after the meeting of the Conference, as junior preacher under the direction of the Chairman of the London District. After remaining a second year on this circuit, he travelled respectively for one year the Port Hope and Thorold circuits. On completing his four years' probation, he was ordained at London in June, 1855, and sent to Dundas. The next year he married, and was appointed superintendent of the St. Andrew's circuit, on the Ottawa River. He laboured here for two years, when he was sent to the Odelltown circuit. In 1860 he was stationed by the Conference in Montreal West. Very shortly afterwards he was compelled, owing to enfeebled health, caused by protracted overwork before coming to the city, to resign his charge, and to retire temporarily from the pastorate. In the course of a few months he became sufficiently restored to undertake the superintendence of the St. John's circuit, where he laboured for a term of three years. He was next stationed in Collingwood, Ontario; but at the end of a year was removed to Toronto, having accepted an invitation from the congregation of Elm Street Church to become their pastor. At the end of his three years' term he received an invitation to go to Belleville; but feeling his health again giving way, he requested the Conference to appoint him to a lighter field of labour, and was sent to Ingersoll, Ontario. At the Conference which was held in Toronto in 1869 he was elected editor of the Christian Guardian, as successor to Dr. Jeffers, a position which he still retains, and which he has now occupied for a longer period than any of his predecessors. For five years consecutively he was reëlected to this office, each time by a large majority of the ministers attending the annual Conference. At the first General Conference of the Methodist Church of Canada, held in Toronto, in September, 1874, when the Wesleyan and New Connexion bodies became amalgamated, he was again elected Connexional editor for a term of four years; and at the second General Conference, which assembled in Montreal in 1878, he was once more reëlected by an almost unanimous vote to the same important office for another quadrennial term. For this position, which he has occupied for such a length of time with so much credit to himself and satisfaction to the Church, he has in an eminent degree the essential qualifications. Literary composition, both in prose and verse, has always been Dr. Dewart's favourite employment; and although he has laboured at a great disadvantage in the field of literature, owing to the constant pressure of pastoral and ministerial duties, he has by dint of hard toil and great exertion accomplished a good deal in the way of authorship. The productions of his pen first brought him into prominence as a thinker of more than ordinary mental power; and by his writings he has earned his widest and most lasting reputation. Not only has he been highly successful as a prose writer, but he has written and published a volume of poems which evince poetic ability of no mean order, and entitle him to a prominent place among the bards of Canada. His stirring lyrics on a great variety of subjects—patriotic, domestic, and religious—are characterized by elevated thought, graceful diction, and almost faultless metre. The poems on "Niagara Falls," "John Milton," and "Voices of the Past," and others, reveal true poetic imagination, and are not unworthy to be ranked with the productions of authors of greater distinction. A brief enumeration of his works, [Pg 223]with their distinguishing features and the dates of their publication, will show how much he has done in the department of literature, and will also indicate how busy he has been with his pen amidst all his other engagements. His first literary effort of any importance was an essay, written in 1858, against the use of tobacco, which won for him out of a large number of competitors a valuable prize. In 1861 he published a thoughtful pamphlet on "The Children of the Church," in which he presents a somewhat original view of that important subject. In 1863, after considerable time spent in collecting the materials, he published a volume entitled "Selections from Canadian Poets," with critical and biographical notes, and a valuable introductory essay on Canadian poetry, which by its wide circulation brought into public notice a number of our country's poets theretofore unknown to fame, and rescued from oblivion a great many waifs of the imagination well worthy of being preserved in permanent form. In 1865 he wrote his "Waymarks," and the following year he wrote an able article on F. W. Robertson, of Brighton, which appeared in the Methodist Quarterly Review, of New York, and attracted a good deal of attention at the time. The same year he edited and compiled "The Canadian Speaker," an elocutionary reader for teachers and students, containing useful introductory remarks on the principles of elocution. In 1869 he published his "Broken Reeds," and his collection of original poems entitled "Songs of Life." In 1873 he published a pamphlet entitled "Priestly Pretensions Disproved." In 1877 he published a scholarly pamphlet entitled "Spurious Catholicity," being a trenchant reply to a pamphlet entitled "Catholicity and Methodism," by the Rev. James Roy, M.A. In 1878 he published his most important work, a timely and unsectarian volume, replete with thoughtful arguments and practical suggestions for promoting vital godliness, entitled "Living Epistles; or, Christ's Witnesses in the World," with an appreciative introduction by the Rev. William Ormiston, D.D., and containing also a concise essay on "Christianity and Scepticism." In the spring of 1878 he was appointed to deliver the annual lecture before the Theological Union of Victoria College, at the closing of the institution the following year. He took for his subject "The Development of Doctrine," an important theme, hitherto scarcely touched by Methodist theologians; and his lecture, which was delivered in Cobourg, during the Convocation week in May, 1879, and has since been published in pamphlet form, is a comprehensive, liberal, and seasonable discussion of this interesting theological question. As a just and fitting recognition of his versatile talents, his unwearied industry, and his literary and theological attainments, the University of Victoria College at that time conferred upon him the degree of Doctor of Divinity.

Dr. Dewart is a man of great natural ability and force of character. He is, in the true sense of the term, a self-made man, and his success is largely attributable to his indomitable perseverance and unwearied application. He has always been a diligent and laborious student, and a close observer of human nature. Thrown upon his own resources before he had attained his majority, he, without any special patronage, rapidly made his way to positions of prominence. Since he has occupied the editorial chair of the Christian Guardian his sphere of usefulness has been greatly enlarged, embracing as it does the whole of Canadian Methodism. Being a forcible speaker and a vigorous writer, few men in the Church during that time have done more than he to determine the future character of Methodism in this country. He is a firm believer in true Christian union, and has for years desired [Pg 224]to see, and striven to bring about, a united Methodism. The amalgamation of the two bodies which took place in 1874 was in no small degree due to his persistent advocacy and powerful defence, both through the columns of the Guardian and in the discussions of the Conference. In connection with the movement for the consolidation of Canadian Methodism, he took a leading part in advocating lay delegation and union principles; and at the London Conference in 1873, when a plan of union had been agreed upon by the Wesleyan, Eastern, British American, and New Connexion Conferences, he, in conjunction with Dr. Nelles, was appointed a delegate to the British Conference to represent the relations arising out of the proposed union, and to arrange the terms of settlement with the parent Body. As a member of Church Courts and Conference Committees, he displays sagacity and decision of character. As a preacher he is earnest, practical, and at times eloquent; his sermons are calculated to quicken the intellect as well as the spirit. He is a man of strong convictions, tenacious of his opinions, and fearless and outspoken in expressing and maintaining them. He is also a man of broad views, of progressive principles, and of advanced ideas upon all subjects, whether civil or ecclesiastical. Although thoroughly liberal in mere matters of opinion, whenever a principle is at stake he shows that he has the moral courage to act in accordance with his conscientious convictions, and resolutely to adhere to his purpose in spite of opposition, or prejudice, or the loss of popular favour. He has always taken a deep interest in everything that concerns the well-being of society, and has heartily sympathized and coöperated with all evangelical and non-sectarian institutions. His earliest attempts at public speaking were made while he was teaching school, in behalf of the great cause of temperance. He has ever since been a steady and earnest advocate of Prohibition, and is at the present time the President of the Ontario branch of the Dominion Temperance Alliance.


1 See "Macmullen's History of Canada," chap. xxvi.

2 This son and heir was painted by the celebrated Sir Thomas Lawrence, and the portrait is one of the greatest of that artist's successes. It has often been engraved. Canadian readers who feel an interest in the matter will find a very faithful reproduction of it in Cassell's "Magazine of Art," for 1879.

3 The date of her birth is erroneously given in nearly all the authorities as May 19th, 1797. The correct year is given in the life of Mrs. Jameson by her niece, Gerardine Macpherson, published about two years ago; but that biographer does not profess to give either the day or the month, and the gravestone in Kensal Green Cemetery is equally silent on the subject.

4 See "The Speeches and Public Letters of the Hon. Joseph Howe;" edited by William Annand, M.P.P. Boston, 1858.

5 Not Sir Brenton Halliburton, who had presided at the trial for libel in 1835, but Thomas Chandler Haliburton, better known to the literary world by his pseudonym of "Sam Slick." The papers which made him famous first appeared in the Nova Scotian, during Mr. Howe's editorship of that periodical. Mr. Howe also published Mr. Haliburton's "Historical and Statistical Account of Nova Scotia," at considerable loss to himself.

6 The reference here is doubtless to the trial for libel in 1835.

7 See a remarkably well written paper on Mr. Howe in the Canadian Monthly for August, 1875.

8 See the Canadian Monthly, ubi supra.

9 In Cariboo, the constituency for which he has sat ever since his first entry into public life.

10 This conspicuous event in the history of the Covenanters will be found at length in the pages of Wodrow. The general reader, who may not happen to have a copy of Wodrow at his elbow, will find a sufficiently graphic account of it in the fourth chapter of Macaulay's "History of England."


[End of The Canadian Portrait Gallery: Volume II by John Charles Dent]