Edward Whelan, [Quebec Conference] (20-21 October 1864)
By: Edward Whelan, The Examiner (Charlottetown), Quebec Conference
Citation: Edward Whelan, “Inter-Colonial Union,”The Examiner (31 October 1864).
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Note: Any endnotes come from our recent publication, Charles Dumais, The Quebec Resolutions: Including Several Never-Published Preliminary Drafts by George Brown and John A. Macdonald, and a Collection of all Previously-Published Primary Documents Relating to the Conference (CCF, 2021).
THURSDAY AND FRIDAY, Oct. 20 AND 21.
The Convention has been engaged most diligently these two days in defining the powers of the House of Commons—its duration—mode of election—qualification of members, and particularly the subjects which are to come within the scope of its control. The term of its existence has been fixed, I understand, at five years—the qualification of members to be the same for each Province as that which now obtains in each; and the election laws now existing in each to apply to the election of members for each.
The powers and jurisdiction of the House of Commons refer to thirty-two great general questions; but as these are in the progress of discussion, and my information touching them is incomplete, I must defer further reference to them until my next Letter.
A splendid official reception was given to the Delegates from the Maritime Provinces yesterday (Thursday) at the Laval University, when an Address was presented to them by the Very Reverend Superior of that Institution, and an Answer given in return. The great number of learned Doctors and Professors, in their gorgeous academic robes, was, of itself, a sight worth seeing; but all the wonders of the University, and of the Colleges and Seminary attached, were fully disclosed to the astonished eyes of the Delegates—the Right Reverend Bishops of Quebec, Kingston and Hamilton, who honoured the occasion by their presence, acting, in conjunction with the Doctors of Divinity and other Professors, as cicerones to the Delegates. As the Mail is just about closing, I must reserve for another occasion further observations concerning the Seminary, Colleges, and University. I herewith enclose copies of the address and answer presented yesterday.
 The ‘Address’ and ‘Reply’ are found published in this newspaper but omitted here since they offer no substance on the topic of confederation.