Despatch from Lieutenant-Governor Richard Graves Macdonnell to Right. Hon. Edward Cardwell (8 December 1864)

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Date: 1864-12-08
By: Richard Graves Macdonnell
Citation: Despatch from Richard Graves Macdonnell to Right. Hon. Edward Cardwell (8 December 1864) 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 Lieutenant-Governor Sir R. G. MACDONNELL, C.B., to the Right Hon. EDWARD CARDWELL, M.P.


Government House, Halifax, Nova Scotia, December 8, 1864.
(Received January 3, 1865)
(Answered No.3. January 7, 1865. page 78.)


The enclosed copy of the Resolutions adopted at the Quebec Conference only reached me on the 6th inst., as there was considerable and still unexplained delay in transmitting from Canada a copy to the Delegates from this Province.

2. Those gentlemen do not think it necessary to accompany their report with any detailed explanations. Long ere this can reach you I am aware that you will have been put, by Lord Monck, fully in possession of all the proceedings and resolutions of the Conference. You are also otherwise acquainted with my own individual opinions. It is therefore unnecessary in this Despatch to enter into any further details. I shall for the present follow the example of the Delegates, and await some expression of the intentions of Her Majesty’s Government in reference to the proposed federation. I am convinced that there exists, both on the part of the public and of the present Ministry, a very general disposition to show all due deference to the opinions and wishes of Her Majesty’s Government.

I have, &c.


The Right Hon. Edward Cardwell, M.P.,
&c. &c. &c.

Enclosure in No. 1.

Halifax, Nova Scotia, December 5, 1864

May it please your Excellency,

The undersigned delegates appointed by your Excellency, at the request of the Governor-General, and charged to confer the Quebec Conference upon the subject of a union of the British North American Provinces, have the honour to submit their report.

The Conference consisted of the following members:–

For Canada

The Hon. Sir E.P. TACHE, M. L. C. , Receiver-General and Minister of Militia.
The Hon. JOHN A. MACDONALD, M.P.P., Attorney-General (U. Canada).
The Hon. G. E. CARTIER, M.P.P., Attorney-General (L.Canada).
The Hon. GEORGE BROWN, M.P.P., President of Executive Council.
The Hon. A. MOWATT, M.P.P., Postmaster-General.
The Hon. A. T. GALT, M.P.P., Minister of Finance.
The Hon. T.D. MCGEE, M.P.P., Minister of Agriculture.
The Hon. WM. MCDOUGALL, M.P.P., Provincial Secretary.
The Hon. ALEXANDER CAMPBELL, M.L.C., Commissioner of Crown Lands.
The Hon. Q. C. CHAPAIS, M.P.P., Commissioner of Public Works.
The Hon. L.H. LANGEVIN, M.P.P., Solicitor-General (L. Canada)
The Hon. JAMES COCKBURN, M.P.P., Solicitor-General (U.Canada).

For Nova Scotia.

The Hon. CHARLES TUPPER, M.P.P., Provincial Secretary.
The Hon. WILLIAM A. HENRY, M.P.P., Attorney-General.
The Hon. Jo. MCCULLY, M.L.C.
The Hon. ROBT. B. DICKEY, M.L.C.

For New Brunswick.

The Hon. S.L. TILLEY, M.P.P., Provincial and Financial Secretary
The Hon. W.H. STEEVES, M.L.C., M.E.C.
The Hon. J. M. JOHNSON, M.P.PAttorney-General.
The Hon. P. MITCHELL, M.L.C., M.E.C.
The Hon. E.B. CHANDLER, M.L.C.
Lieut.-Col. the Hon. JOHN H. GRAY, M.P.P.

For Newfoundland.

F.B.T. CARTER, Esq., M.P.P.

For Prince Edward Island.

Col. the Hon. J.H. GRAY, M.P.P.
The Hon. E. PALMER, Attorney-General.
The Hon. W.H. POPE, Provincial Secretary.
The Hon. A.A. MCDONALD, M.L.C.
The Hon. T.H. HAVILAND, M.P.P.

The foregoing members having met at the Parliament House in Quebec on the 10th day of October last, the Conference was organized by the appointment of the Hon. Sir E. P. Tache, Chairman, and the Honourable Messrs. William McDougall, Charles Tupper, S. L. Tilley, Ambrose Shea, and W. H. Pope, Joint Secretaries; H. Bernard, Esq., was nominated by the Secretaries Executive Secretary, and approved by the Conference.

After deliberating daily at great length until Thursday, the 27th October, the Conference adjourned to Montreal, where a final meeting was held on the 29th October. At this meeting it was unanimously resolved that the various delegations should present the annexed report as the common result at which the Conference had arrived, and which it was agreed should be authenticated by the signatures of all the members. Dealing as this report does with every branch of the subject, it is not necessary that any elaborate remarks should be added in order to place the whole question fully before your Excellency, but we have much gratification […] stating that nothing was more conspicuous in the discussions of the Conference that a unanimous sentiment of devoted loyalty to the Crown, ardent attachment to the British institutions, and a uniform desire to adopt such a constitution as would unite the resources of all the Provinces represent in a common effort to preserve the rights and liberties which their inhabitants now enjoy as British subjects, and to ensure their continued connexion with the parent State.

The undersigned cannot conclude this report without placing on record their lively appreciation of the uniform good feeling which marked the deliberations of the Conference, and the extreme courtesy and kindness manifested on every occasion by the Government and people of Canada to the Delegates from the Maritime Provinces.

All of which is respectfully submit,.


REPORT of Resolutions adopted at a Conference of Delegates from the Provinces of Canada, Nova Scotia, and New Brunswick, and the Colonies of Newfoundland and Prince Edward Island, held at the City of Quebec, 10th October 1861, as the Basis of a proposed Confederation of those Provinces and Colonies.

These Resolutions are printed as an Appendix, page 158.

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