Despatch from Anthony Musgrave to Right Hon. Edward Cardwell (27 January 1865)
By: Anthony Musgrave
Citation: Despatch from Anthony Musgrave to Right Hon. Edward Cardwell (27 January 1865) in UK, Parliament, Correspondence respecting the Proposed Union of the British North American Provinces (London: George Edward Eyre and William Spottiswoode, 1867).
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Copy of a DESPATCH from Governor MUSGRAVE to the Right Hon. EDWARD CARDWELL., M.P.
Government House, Newfoundland, January 27, 1865.
(Received February 16, 1865.)
(Answered No. 9, February 27, 1865, page 154.)
I HAVE the honour to forward to you copies of the speech with which I have this day opened the annual session of the Colonial Parliament.
2. I have, perhaps, permitted myself more freedom in the expression of my opinion on some subjects than has been usual on the part of the Governor since the establishment of Responsible Government ; but the Council entirely approved of the draft which I submitted to them, and I have reason to hope that the remarks which I have made will not be inexpedient in the present position of local affairs and circumstances.
I have, &c.
(Signed) A. MUSGRAVE.
The Right Hon. Edward Cardwell, M.P.,
&c. &c. &c.
Enclosure in No. 2.
EXTRACT from SPEECH of his Excellency Governor MUSGRAVE on opening the Fifth Session of the Eighth General Assembly, January 27, 1865.
MR. PRESIDENT, AND HONOURABLE GENTLEMEN OF THE COUNCIL,
MR. SPEAKER, AND GENTLEMEN OF THE HONOURABLE HOUSE OF ASSEMBLY,
You will be furnished with the report of the delegates from the several British North American Provinces, who met at Quebec in October last to consider a proposition for the Confederation of these Colonies, and with a copy of a Despatch from the Secretary of State upon this important subject, conveying the general approval of Her Majesty’s Government of the proceedings of the Conference. The question to which these papers refer is one of the deepest interest to the whole community, without exception of any part ore section, and I am confident that I need not extort you to approach the consideration of the proposal submitted by the Conference in a spirit of calm examination. Its bearing upon the immediate welfare of the population of Newfoundland will no doubt must concern you, but future beneficial consequences likely to flow from arrangement, if carried into effect, will not escape your inquiry. I have been acquainted, by the Governor-General of Canada, that the Canadian Parliament was summoned to meet on the 19th instant, and it is intended by his Government to propose an Address to the Queen from both branches of the Legislature, embodying the resolutions of the Quebec Conference, and praying Her Majesty to cause a Bill top be introduced into the Imperial Parliment to enact the union of these Colonies on the basis of these resolutions.
With respect to the question of the Customs tariff of the proposed Union, which naturally engages much consideration, it is obviously impossible for the Government of any one Province to give any pledge which would be binding upon the Government or Parliament of the Union ; but I am in a position to state that, if the decision rested with the members of the present Canadian Administration, their desire would be to arrange the charges in the tariff so as to meet the views of all the members of the proposed Union.
His Excellency Lord Monck has expressed to me his opinion that the course of action will be in a direction that will be satisfactory in your Honourable Bodies, and that no apprehension need be entertained in Newfoundland that a system of excessive import duties will will be introduced.