Despatch from Lieutenant Governor Arthur Gordon to Right Hon. Edward Cardwell (10 April 1866)
By: Arthur Gordon
Citation: Despatch from Lieutenant Governor Arthur Gordon to Right Hon. Edward Cardwell (10 April 1866) 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 Lieut.-Governor the Hon. ARTHUR GORDON to the Right Hon. EDWARD CARDWELL, M.P.
Government House, Fredericton, N.B., April 10, 1866.
(Received May 8, 1866.)
I HAVE the honour to enclose the protest of the minority of the Legislative Council, against the Address to Her Majesty transmitted to you in my Despatch, No. 18, * of the 9th instant.
I have, &c.
(Signed) ARTHUR H. GORDON.
The Right Hon. Edward Cardwell, M.P.,
&c. &c. &c.
Enclosure in No. 22.
LEGISLATIVE COUNCIL JOURNAL.
Monday, April 9, 1866.
The Hon. Mr. Saunders sitting as President.
The Hon. Mr. Botsford,
The Hon. Mr. Chandler,
To the passing of the address to the throne, praying Her Majesty to cause a measure to be submitted to the Imperial Parliament for the purpose of uniting the Colonies of Canada, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Newfoundland, and Prince Edward Island in one Government, based on the resolutions of this House passed on Friday, the Sixth day of April instant, and to the resolution of this House of Saturday last, that such address should be presented by this House instead of a Committee thereof :-
1. Because the scheme for a Confederation under the Quebec resolutions was submitted to the people of this Province at a general election holden in March 1865, and was rejected by a large majority, a dissolution of the House of Assembly having taken place for the express purpose of obtaining the decision of the people in reference to such constitution.
2. Because at the subsequent session of the Legislature, held in May 1865, a resolution against the adoption of such Confederation was passed by a large majority of the representatives of the people, declaring that in their opinion the consummation of such a scheme would prove disastrous to the best interests and prosperity of this Province, the division thereon being twenty-nine — ten, while this House forbore to give any opinion on the subject, though made the order of the day for the Eighteenth day of May 1865.
3. Because this House, in now praying Her Most Gracious Majesty to force upon an unwilling people by Imperial legislation a measure which has been so rejected by them, is seeking the adoption of a policy totally at variance with that benign rule heretofore enjoyed by us under our Most Gracious Sovereign and Her Royal predecessors, and subversive of the rights of Her loyal subjects as existing under the blessings of self-government long enjoyed throughout Her Majesty’s British North American Colonies.
4. Because this House, in asking Her Majesty to cause to be submitted to the Imperial Parliament for enactment a scheme of Confederation so rejected by the people and their representatives in General Assembly, are pursuing a course impolite and unwise, and necessarily tending to bring this House into collision with the House of Assembly and the people of this Province, while, by thus ignoring their rights, and interfering with their privileges, they weaken, in the minds of the people, their respect for the legitimate function of this House, which it is so desirable to preserve unimpaired, such interference being justly regarded by the people of new Brunswick as an attempt by this House to coerce them into the adoption of a Confederation to which they have declared themselves entirely opposed.
R. L. HAZEN.
W. H. ODELL.