Province of Canada, “Report on the State of the Militia in the Province” [Correspondence on the Militia: Monck, Newcastle, De Grey, et al] in Sessional Papers, No. 15 (1863)

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Date: 1862-05-10* (Sessional Papers – 1863)
By: Province of Canada
Citation: Province of Canada, Parliament, “Report on the State of the Militia in the Province” in Sessional Papers (1863).
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(Copy) The Under Secretoryfw’ War to Under Secretary for Colonies.
WAR OFFICE, 10th May, 1862.
SIB,—I am directed by Secretary Sir George Lewis to refer you to the letter from
this office dated the 20th March last if}; and to request thatyon will be pleased to move His
Grace the Duke ofNewcastleto state whether hewishes the remaining number of Carbines,
sets of saddlery, &c., which were provided for the service of the cavalry militia in Canada,
to be now sent out to that country.
I have, 8w.
(Signed,) DI Gan arm RIPON.
26 Victoria. Sessional Papers (No. 15). A. 1863
No. 96.)
annnc, 10th June, 1862.
1. MY LORD DUKE,—I have the honor to acknowledge your Grace’s despatch, No
119, of May 22nd, covering a letter from Lord De Grey, dated May 10th, in which his
Lordship desired to be informed whether the carbines and saddlery provided for the Cav
alry Militia. of Canada should be forwarded to that country.
2. I might have answered this question by the last mail, but I preferred postponing my
reply until after the termination of the Session of the Provincial Parliament, in order that
might, in laying before your Grace my views on the whole uestion of the supply of mili
tary stores to this Colony, have the advantage of knowing t e changes which the Legisla
ture of Canada might have made in the Militia. Law of the Province.
3. 1 have the honor to enclose for your Grace’s information a copy of the Act for that
purpose to which I yesterday signified Her Majesty’s assent. I also enclose a copy of the
Act of which this Act is an amendment.
4. Your Grace will observe that substantially the amendments consist of provisions
for securing more correct muster Rolls of the sedentary Militia (the whole male population
of the Province between 18 and 60 years of age.)
2nd. For increasing the number of the active force from five to ten thousand men and
the number of days’ drill in the year from six to twelve.
3rd. For enabling the Governor General in the event of war, to enlist regiments, in
dependent of the Militia, for the purposes of the war.
4th. Empowering the formation of Drill Assoications amongst persons not belonging
to the Active Force.
Enclollm, ‘ 5. I have also the honor to enclose a copy of the Report of the Commission
N°‘ 2- on Militia afi’airs, appointed early in last spring, and of the Bill founded on
that report, which was rejected on its second reading by the Legislative Assembly. The
requisitions which I have made to your Grace for clothing were based on the force which
that Bill, if it had become law, would have called into existence.
6. The Legislature has refused to recognize the present necessity for the military or
ganization of the people of the Province to so large an extent as was contemplated by this
Bill, but it has left untouched the powers which the old Militia Law conferred on the Gov
ernor General (clause 61,) to “ call out the militia or any part thereof, whenever in his
“ opinion it is advisable so to do, by reason of war, invasion or insurrection or imminent
“danger of any of them.”
7. The Militia Commission, which numbered amongst its members, military oflicers
and civilians intimately acquainted with this Province, laid it down as their opinion (Par.
8.) that to provide an eflicient force for the defence of the country, an Active force of
50,000 men with a reserve of the same number ought to be provided.
8. This statement afi’ords an index to the. number of militia men whom it would be my
duty to call out in case this Province should unhappily become the seat of war.
9. It is true that in consequence of the failyre of the Bill referred to, the men, when
called out, will not be so eflicient as we might have expected them to prove if they had
been organized under its provisions, but still, with the exception of the 10,000 Volunteers
sanctioned by the new Act, they would be the only contribution which the Province would,
under the law as it now stands, have in its power to make towards its defence.
10. If the Bill founded on the Report of the Militia Commission had become law, the
Colony would have been entitled, under your Grace’s circular of May 14th,to borrow from
the Imperial Government the arms necessary for the equipment immediately of 50,000
and ultimately of 100,000. .
11. While I do not question the right of the Provincial Parliament to act as they
have done, in providing, in my judgment, so scantily for the defence of their territory, and
while I am ready to admit, that events may prove that in taking this course the representa.
tatives of the people in this Province are acting with sounder judgment than if they had
adopted adifierent line of conduct, I am on the other hand very anxious, thatshoul’l these
views unhappin prove erroneous, 1 may be in a position, to make the most eflicient use of
the means placed at my disposal.
26 Victoria.- Sessional Papers (No 15). A. 1868
f L
12. It is with this object that I would earnestly press upon your Grace the propriety
of largely augmenting, during the present navigation season, the supply of arms and am
munition in store in Canada and of forwarding the other articles for which I have applied,
cavalry equipments included, not for immediate issue, to the militia force of the Province,
but to meet the demand which must arise if the necessity for calling out the Militia. should
ever unhappin occur.
13. There are at present in the Province (including the arms sent out in the Melbourne)
in round numbers, 50,000 Enfield Rifles, either in store or in the hands of the Volunteers.
My suggestion is that before the closing of the navigation next autumn that number should
be raised to at least 90,000, with equipments and ammunition to correspond.
14. The Militia. Commission suggested that the number of Field Batteries of Artillery,
active and reserve, should be’twenty of 85 men each. I am not aware that we have in store in
Canada any guns for arming Field Artillery. There are a. few in the hands of theVolunteers.
I would submit to your Grace the propriety of placing in store in this Province an armament
suficient for the equipment of the above force.
15. The number of Cavalry fixed by the Commission was 27 troops of 50 men each, and
I would advise that chvalry equipments for that force should be also sent out.
16. Your Grace will understand that I mean these stores to be held by the Imperial
storekeepers, not for immediate issue, but to guard against the evil consequences which
must ensue should war occur during the winter season, and find the Province insufliciently
Erepared with a supply of arms at a period of the year when they cannot be forwarded from
ngland without great risk and increased expense,
I have, &0.
(Signed,) Moucx.
His Grace the Duke of Newcastle.
(Copy—Cansda—No. 158.)
Downmo Srnnnr, 2nd August, 1862.
MY Lonn,—With reference to your Lordship’s despatch, No. 96, of the 10th June
last, I have the honor to transmit to you, for your information and guidance, a copy of a
letter specifying the extent to which the Secretary of State for War has decided to increase
the store of arms in Canada, and the terms (in which I concur) on which he considers
those arms should be issued.
You will perceive that the military stores in Canada will shortly be increased by
6,682,000 rounds of small-arm ammunition, and by 500 sets of cavalry equipments.
I have, 8m,
(Signed,) anossrns;
The Viscount Monck, &c., &c., &c.
(Sir E’. Lugard to Mr. Elliot.)
(Copy.) ‘ WAR Orrrcn, 80th July, 1862.
Sm,—I have laid before the Secretary of State for War, your letter of the 24th inst.,
together with its enclosure from the Governor of Canada on the subject of the Militia Act
which has recently been passed by the Legislature of that Province.
With regard to the application contained in Lord Monck’s des atch for additional
supplies of military stores, to be sent out so as to be in readiness or issue during the
winter, if need be, I am to request that you will acquaint the Duke of Newcastle that Sir
George Lewis has given directions to the following effect, and which, he trusts, will meet
the requirements of the case :
Twenty.12-pounder Howitzers, sixteen 18-pr., and twelve 20-pr. Armstrong Guns,
are at present ready forshipment, and will be despatched without delay. These guns will
26 Victoria. Sessional Papers (No 15). A. 1863
be placed in store, and if required by the Militia Artillery, will be issued on loan.
40,000. Forty thousand stand of Rifles will be at once added to the stores in Canada.
Sir George Lewis proposes, however, that they should be made issuable in accordance
with the recent regulations on the subject, rather than on the understanding that they
will be paid for, as suggested by His Grace.
45,000, Of accoutrements, forty-five thousand sets are at present in store in Canada.
Should more be required, demands must be made upon Halifax and New Brunswick,
24,000-20,491 where there are respectively twenty-four thousand and twenty thousand four
hundred and ninety-one sets.
With regard’ to small-arm ammunition, 6,682,000 additional rounds will be sent out
tAo‘ Canada shortly, thus raising the store to 13,888,785 rounds, or 20,000,000 in B. N.
merica _
I am to add that directions have been given for forwarding the 500 sets of Cavalry
equipments referred to in your letter from Halifax to Canada.
I have, 6:0,,
(Signed,) E. Lueanp.
(Copy—No. 123.)
Govsasmr House, qunro, August 15th, 1862.
MY Loan DUKE,—I have the honor to acknowledge your Grace’s despatch of the
2nd instant, in reference to the increase of the stores of arms and ammunition in this Pro
vince, and I beg to express my thanks for the prompt manner in which Her Majesty’s
Government have met my requisition in that respect.
I have, &c.,
His Grace the Duke of Newcastle, &c., &c., &c., K.G.
(Copy—No. 117.)
Gomnmm House, Qunnso, July 14th, 1862.
MY Loan DUKE,—Tlle Government of this Province are desirous of retaining in
their service for sometime, the non-commissioned oflicers who were sent here by Her
Majesty’s Government for the purpose of assisting in the drilling of the Militia; and I
shall feel much obliged if your Grace will cause me to be informed whether during the
continuance of such employment by the Colonial authorities, these men will continue to
receive any, and if any, what amount of pay from Imperial funds.
I have, &c.,‘
His Grace, the Duke of Newcastle, &c., &c., 820., K.G.
(Copy, Canada, No. 160.) _
Dowmse Swarm, 26th July, 1862.
MY Lonn,—I have the honor to transmit to you, for your information, the enclosed
copy of a letter from the War Department, relative‘to the non-commissioned oflicers who
were sent out during last winter for the purpose of drilling, if required, militia and volun
I have to request that you will furnish me, at your early convenience, with‘the infor
mation required by the Secretary of State for War, in order that steps may be-takcn for the
26 Victoria. Sessional Papers (No. 15). A. 1863
immediate return to their several corps of all these non-commissioned oficers whose ser
vices the Provincial Government may not wish to accept and pay for.
I have. &e.
(Signed ,) N nwcasrnn.
Governor, the Right Hon. Viscount Menck, &c., &e., 80c.
– WAR Orrrcn, 26th July, 1862.
Sin,—-In the despatch from Lord Monck forwarded to this department in your letter
of the 17th April last, His Lordship requested to be allowed to postpone an answer to the
enquiry proposed to him by the Duke of Newcastle respecting the retention in Coloninl
employment of the non-commissioned oflicers (42 in number) who were sent out to Canada
during the winter for the purpose of drilling the militia and volunteers until he should see
the form in which the new Militia Bill had been passed.
The Militia Bill has been now passed and received in this country some little time,
but Sir George Lewis is not aware that Lord Monck has yet supplied the information which
he had thus promised.
I am to request that you will observe to the Duke of Newcastle that it is Very desira
ahle that Her Majesty’s Government should be furnished with an early decision on this
subject, as well from the authorities in Canada as from those in Nova Scotia and New Bruns
wick, with a view to the immediate return of the non-commissioned ofliccrs to their several
corps, in the event of their services not being accepted and paid for by the respective Go~
vernmouts. ‘
1 have, 8w. ~
(Signed,) Enwasn Leeann.
T- F. Elliot, Esq., &c., &o., dc.
(Copy, Canada, No. 157.)
Dowmso Srmr, 2nd August, 1862.
MY L0nn,-—-I have the honour to acknowledge the receipt ofyourLordship’e despatoh
of the 14th of July in which you enquire whether, during the employment by the Provin
cial authorities of the non-commissioned oficers whom Her Majesty’s Government sent out
to assist in drilling the Canadian Militia, they would receive any, and if any, what pay
from Imperial funds.
Though your Lordship will have gathered from the terms of my despateh of the 26th
of last month what is the intention of Her Majesty’s Government on this subject, I think
it better to return a definite answer to your present question and to inform you that Her
Majesty’s Government will expect that the Canadian Government shall provide the entire
pay of the non’cornmissioned ofieers whilst in their service.
I have, dtc. .
(Signed ) Newcasru.
The Viscount Monoli. ’
(Copy—~Canada—No. 163.)
Dowmso Srnls’r, let August, 1862.
Mr Loan,—Now that the Session of Parliament has been brought to a close, I feel it
my duty to call your Lordship’s attention, in a more formal manner thin I have hitherto
done, since the rejection of the Militia Bill by the Legislature of Canada, and the conse
quent change of your responsible advisers, to the want of preparation for defence of the
26 Victoria. Sessional Papers (No. 15). A. 1863
British North American Provinces, in the event of an interruption of the present amicable ‘
relations of this country with the United States, and to the anxiety which was expressed
upon this subject, on more than one occasion, both in the House of Lords and in the
House of Commons.
I trust that the general spirit of these debates will not have been misinterpreted. I
feel no less confidence that the object of the present despatch will not be mistaken as im
plying eithcr mistrust of the Canadian people or an alteration by ‘Her Majesty’s Govern
ment of the view which they have frequently expressed of the relations which ought
to exist between England and the Colony.
On the one hand, the promptitude with which troops and stores were despatched last
winter, with much inconvenience to the soldiers, and at no inconsiderable expense to this
country, shews the readiness of England to defend Canada with the whole ower of the
Empire ; whilst, on the other hand, the reception of those troops and the loya enthusiasm
of the people of Canada, give ample assurance of the fact that Canada is attached to this
country, and faithful to the Queen.
It cannot be denied, however, that the rejection of the Militia Bill has produced a
disadvantageous impression on the minds of the English people. The public cannot be
expected to see that the adoption or rejection of a particular measure may sometimes turn,
not so much on the merits of the measure itself as on other considerations, though Her
Majesty’s Government are aware that Parliamentary tactics in a free Representative As
sembly not unfrequently make that appear the real issue, which is in fact only the occa
They do not, therefore, infer from the rejection of this measure, that either the Cana
dian Ministry or the Canadian people are reluctant to make proper provision for their own
defence , but they do regret that, at such a moment, both should be exposed to miscon
struction of their motives and intentions, not only by the people of England, but by those
of the United States.
Her Majesty’s Government disclaim both the right and the desire to interfere in the
party politics of Canada, and they would evince no concern in the late change of your
advisers, if it were not connected with an event which appears to impugn the patriotism
of her people.
IfI urge upon you the importance of speedily resuming measures for some better
military organization of the inhabitants of Canada than that which now exists, it must not
be supposed that Her Majesty’s Government is influenced by any particular apprehension
ofan attack on the Colony at the present moment, but undoubtedly the necessity for pre
paration, which has from time been urged by successive Secretaries of State, is greatly
ncreased by the presence, for the first time on the American Continent, of a large stand
ing army, and the unsettled condition of the neighboring States. Moreover, the growing
importance of the Colony, and its attachment to free institutions, make it every day more
essential that it should possess in itself, that, without which no free institutions can be
secure—adequate means of self-defence. The adequacy of those means is materially influ
enced by the peculiar position of the country. Its extent of frontier is such that it can
be safe only when its population capable of bearing arms, is ready and competent to fight.
That the population is ready, no one will venture to doubt; that it cannot be competent,
is no less certain, until it has received that organization, and acquired that habit of dis
cipline, which constitute the diflerence between a trained force and an armed mob. The
drill requiredin the regular army, or even in the best Volunteer Battalion, is not neces
sary, nor would it be possible, in a country like Canada, for so, large a body of men as
ought to be prepared for any emergency ; but the Government should be able to avail
itself of the services of the strong and healthy portion of the male adult population at short
notice, if the dangers of invasion by an already organized army are to be provided against.
We have the opinions of the best military authorities, that no body of troops which
England could send, would be able to make Canada safe without the efficient aid of the
Canadian people. Not only is it impossible to send suflicient troops, but if there were four
times the numbers which we are now maintaining in British North America, they could
not secure the whole of the frontier ‘lhe main dependence of such a country must be
upon its own people. The irregular forces which can be formed from the population,
26 Victoria. Sessional Papers (No. 15). A. 1863
know the passes of the woods, are well acquainted with the country, its roads, its rivers,
its defiles : and for defensive warfare, (for aggression they will never he wanted) would be
far more available than regular soldiers.
It is not, therefore, the unwillingness, or the inability of Her Majesty’s Government
to furnish suflicient troops, but the uselessness of such troops without an adequate militia
forcerthat I wish to impress upon you.
In your despatch of the 17th May last, you informed me that there were then 14,760
Volunteers enrolled, besides others who had been more or less drilled. If is far, indeed,
from my intention to discredit either the zeal or the eficiency of these Volunteers who
have, I hope, greatly increased in number since the date of your despatch ; but they con
stitutc a force which cannot suflice for Canada in the event of war. They might form an
admirable small contingent, but what would be required would be a large army. They
might form a force stronger than is necessary in time of peace to secure internal tranquility,
but would be inadequate to repel external attack in time of war. Past experience shows
that no reasonable amount of encouragement can raise the number of volunteers to the
required extent. I
It appears to me that the smallest number of men partially drilled, which it would be
essential to provide within a given time, is 50,000. The remainder of the Militia would
of course be liable to be called upon in an emergency. Perhaps the best course would be
todrill every year one or more companies of each Battalion of the Sedentary Militia. In
this mnner the training of a large number of men might be cfl’ected, and all companies
so drilled should once at least in two years, if not in each year, be exercised in Battalion
drill, so as to keep upthcir training.
I put forward these suggestions for the consideration of the_Canadian Government and
Parliament, but Her Majesty’s Government have no desire to dictate as to details,or to in
terfere with the internal Government of the Colony. Their only object is to assist and
guide its action in the matter of the Militia as to make that force eflicient, at the least
possible cost to the Province and to the mother country.
The Canadian Government will doubtless be fully alive to the important fact that a
well organized system of Militia will contribute much towards sustaining the high position
with reference to pecuniary credit, which, in spite of its large debt, and its deficient reve
nue for the past few’ years, the Colony has hitherto held in the money markets of Europe.
A country, which, however unjustly, is suspected of inability or indisposition to provide for
_ its own defence, docs not in the present circumstances of America, other a tempting field
for investment in public funds, or the outlay of private capital. Men question the stable
condition of affairs in a land which is not competent to protect itself.
It may no doubt be argued on the other hand, that the increased charge of a Militia
would diminish rather than enlarge the credit of the colony. I am convinced that such
would not be the case if steps were taken for securing a basis of taxation sounder in itself
than the almost exclusive reliance on Customs duties. It is my belief that a step in this di
rection would not only supply funds for the Militia but would remove all apprehension
which exists as to the resources of the Colony.
Whatever other steps may be taken for the improved organization of the Militia, it
appears to Her Majesty’s Government to be of essential importance that its administration
– and the supply of funds for its support, should be exempt from the disturbing action of
ordinary politics. Unless this be done, there can be no confidence that in the appointment
of officers and in other matters of a purely military character, no other object than the effi
ciency of the force is kept in view. Were it not that it might fairly be considered too
great an interference with the privileges of the representatives of the people, I should be
inclined to suggest that the charge for the militia, or a certain fixed portion of it, should be
defrayed from the Consolidated Fund of Canada, or voted for a period of three or five years.
It has further occurred to me that the whole of the British Provinces on the continent
of North America, have in this matter of defence common interests and common duties. Is
it impossible that with the free consent of each of these Colonies, one uniform system of
militia training and organization should be introduced into all of them? The numbers of
men to be raised and trained in each would have to be fixed, and the expenses of the whole
would be defrayed from a common fund, contributed in fair proportion by each of the
. 26 Victoria. Sessional Papers (No. 15). A. 1863
L —— u; 2
Colonies. If the Governor General of Canada were Commander in Chief of the whole, the
Lieutenant Governors of the other Colonies would act as Generals of Division under him,
but it would be essential that an Adjutant General of the whole force, approved by Her
Ma’esty’s Government, should move to and fro, as occasion might r uire, so as to give
uniformity to the training of the whole, and cohesion to the force itse f.
As such a scheme would affect more than one Colony, it must, of course, emanate from
the Secretary of State, but Her Majesty’s Government would not entertain it unless they
were convince’fl that it Would be acceptable both to the people of Canada and to the other
Colonies, and they desire to know in the first instance, in what light any such plan would
be viewed by the Members of your Executive Council. I understand that the Lieutenant
Governors of Nov: Scotia and New Brunswick, availing themselves of the leave of absence
lately accorded to them, intend to meet you in Quebec in the course of the ensuing month.
This visit will afford you a good opportunity for consulting them upon this important
q The political union of the North American Colonies has often been discussed’ The
merits of that measure, and the dificulties in the way of its accomplishment have been
well considered, but none of the objections which oppose it seem to impede a union for
defence. This matter is one in which all the Colonies have interests common with each
other and identical with the policy’ of England.
I conclude by again urging upon you the necessity for an early decision upon this most
important question. I should hear with very great satisfaction that your Government had
decided upon advising you to summon the Parliament of Canada to meet at an early period
so that the winter shall not pass over, without obtaining from the Legislature such powers
as may enable you to commence a well arranged Military organization of the Provinces,
and prepare for such emergencies as, though they cannot be accurately foreseen, it must be
evident to everybody, may possibly arise, and are at present very inadequately provided for.
It is in time of peace that preliminary measures of defence should be perfected, so that in
the event of war they may be found so far ready as to ensure that an enemy hall’not ob
tain a footing in the country, before aid is forthcoming from other portions of the Empire
[Signed,] . Nawoasru.
Governor Viscount Monck, &o., 810., 2c.
Lord Monck lo the Honorable the Duke 0/ Newcastle, October, 1862.
(Copy No. 147.)
Qonnso, October 30, 1862.
MY LORD DUKE,-—Your Grace is already aware of the receipt by me of your despateh
N o. 163, of August 21st, on the subject of the Militia organization in Canada.
2. Immediately on receiving that despatch I referred it to my Executive Council for.
their consideration and report. I did not press for any immediate answer, as the subject
is one of considerable present importance, and opens up questions calculated to exercise
great influence on the future relations of the Empire and the Province. The recent advent
to power of my present advisers rendered it therefore only a matter of fairness that full
time should be allowed them to discuss and decide an issue of so much moment.
{Nigehhfinofli .3. A short time since the Ministry announced to melthat it was the in
– gm McDon-‘ld tention of two prominent members of the Executive Council to proceed
Oct” 1862, ’ soon to London, as a delegation from the Government of this Province to
Her Majesty’s Government, on important Colonial business. As the departure of these
gentlemen from Canada would necessarily adjourn the consideration of the subject of Mili
tia organization until their return, I requested that before the Executive Council should
be deprived of their assistance the Government Would furnish me with a report on the des
patch of Your Grace, and a statement of their policy in reference to the matters alluded to
m it.
26 Victoria. Sessional Papers (No. 16). A. 1863
lln- 01’ Council- 4. I have now the honor to transmit to Your Grace the accompanying
Report of the Executive Council, authenticated by my signature, on the despatch referred
to it.
5. I will not enter into the discussion of any abstract theories as to the relation which
should subsist between England and her Colonies in reference to Colonial defence, because
Your Grace’s despatch is professedly only suggestive, and does not seek authoratively to
fix the de es in which the Mother Country and the Colony should object, angtthe admission on the part of the Colonial Government theaatchancyotnhtirnigbustheotuoldthbaet
done by them in the way of defensive preparation, is a proof that the difl’erence of opinion,
if any, existing between Your Grace and the Executive Council of Canada is one of degree
only and not of principle. I think too that it is my duty rather to apply myself to the
practical propositions put forward. I will therefore proceed to put Your Grace in posses
sion of my opinion as to the efficiency of the plan of organization embodied in the accom
panying Report.
6. In order to make my remarks fully understood, I must draw your attention to the
present condition of the Militia Force of the Province, as regulated by the existing law.
7. Your Grace is aware that what is called the Sedentary Militia embraces the whole
male population of the Colony between the ages of 18 and 60. The men are divided into
battalions, regularly ofiicered ; but from the circumstance that this battalion organization is
territorial in its character, it is obvious that it is not available for the purpose of actual
service, because if you called out for service_a battalion of the Sedentary Militia. you would
depopulate of its male inhabitants the district to which the battalian belonged, and would
leave wholly untouched the population of the surrounding districts.
8. It is therefore evident that in the event of circumstances arising which would neces‘
sitate the calling out of the Militia for defensive purposes, the regimental or battalion
organization of the Sedentary Militia would afford no help towards embodying the men in
battalions, so as to render them useful for actual service. Some mode of performing this
necessary work would have to be extemporiaed at a moment of comparative alarm and con
fusion, and the necessity for this would certainly cause great loss of time, if it would not
lead to the entire failure of the attempt to raise an effective force.
9. I have entered into this explanation because I am convinced that the want of any
preliminary organization pervading the whole country is the great dificulty which would
ave to be practically encountered, if Canada should now be compelled to defend herself
against foreign attack, and that any system of pre aration for defence which failed fully to
meet this difliculty would be comparatively worthlless.
f 110. The plan of the GOVernment contained in the accompanying Report may he stated
as o lows :— ‘
(1.) Bri ade Majors are to be appointed in each district.
(2.) Dri l Associations to be formed of officers and non-eommissioned’ofiicers of Seden
tary Militia, who are to be superseded if they refuse to learn their drill.
3.) Enrolment is to be secured of a fixed quota in each district of first class service
men, in companies and battalions, with oflieers.
(4.) Volunteers in future to be clothed, but none paid. .
(6.) Drill rooms, armories, and rifle ranges to be procured for the Volunteers, as cir
cumstances ermit.
It will e seen that the Executive Council proposes to deal with the difliculty above
referred to in this manner. It proposes that the Brigade Majors throughout the country
should secure the enrolment in companies and battalions, within their district, of such
quota as should be appointed of the first class service men, unmarried men and widowers
without children, between the ages of 18 and 45.
11. This enrolment appears to be entirely independent of .the Volunteer or Active
Force organization, and instead of consolidating and systematizing the voluntary action of
the people, appears to me more likely to confuse their minds by the introduction of a third
system of enrolment, in addition to that of the Sedentary Militia and the Active Force.
12. This enrolment is meant to supply the want of any organization now in existence
by means of which, on a sudden emergene , a portion of the Militiamight be embodied
tor active service in a short space of time; but unless the men whose names are enrolled
26 Victoria. Sessional Papers (No. 15]. A. 1863
are put on the same footing with regard to their engagement for services as the Active
Force, who bind themselves to serve for five years, there is no security that the enrolment
will ever produce any practical result, as there is nothing to compel the enrolled men to
servewhen called on.
13. There does not appear to be any inducement held out to men to place their names
on these lists, or to serve when called on, in the way of supplying them with arms, clothing,
or any other benefit to excite or maintain a military spirit amongst them. It is in fact an
attempt to reintroduce, in a worse form, class B or the Active Force, which it is proposed
by this Report to abolish, on the ground of the unsatisfactory manner in which the dis
traction of classes in that force operated. (Class B in the Active Force is that portion of
the Volunteers which has hitherto served without pay, in contradistinction to Class A,
which received a certain amount of pay each year.) I therefore think the measure would
prove entirely nugatory, and that without some inducement no men would give their names,
and that it will therefore fail to provide what I feel certain is the great desideratum of the
defensive force in Canada, namely, a machinery erected in time of peace by means of which,
at the approach cf war, an organized and embodied force could be at short notice turned out.
14. The plan proposed does not, as regards system or organization, touch the Volun
teer Force of the country at all; nor does it propose to give any efi’eetual form or direction
to the excellent spirit by which the people are animated.
15. On the whole, I cannot conceal from Your Grace my opinion that, as regards the
cardinal necessity of the time—a systematic organization of the Forces of the Colony for
defensive purposes,—the plan indicated by the Government contains no principle calculated
to produce efl’ective results, and that the only attempt made to grapple with the difficulties
of this portion of the subject will prove completely illusory.
16. With respect to the other proposals of the Government I do not find any fault.
It is highly desirable to foster a military spirit in, and to promote the acquisition of mili
tary knowledge by a people circumstanced as the Canadians are, and the measures proposed
to be ado ted seem to me, as far as they go, calculated to promote these ends.
17. entirely approve of the abolition of the distinction between Class A and Class B
, in the Active Force, and of the proposal that in future the Government shall supply to the
Volunteers everything necessary for their equipment and drill—Class A of the Volunteers
giving up for the future their distinctive claim for pay, and being put on the same terms
as Class B.
_ _ 18. The question of Militia organization has been argued all through this Report as
if the only choice that existed, consistent with the maintenance of a moderate expenditure
on the Militia, was between the plan indicated by the present Government and that brought
forward by my late advisers and rejected by Parliament. In order that there may be no
misapprehension on this point, I beg leave to place before Your Grace the enclosed “ Heads
of a plan for the organization of a Militia Force of 50,000 men,” a copy of which I gave
the head of the Government when I desired a report on your despatch.
19. It will be seen from the estimate appended to this memorandum that, supposing
the expense to be spread over a period of five years, the annual cost to the Colony of this
system would not be much, if at all, beyond the sum appropriated for Militia purposes in
the last session.
20. Although the supply of men by means of the ballot is named in this memorandum,
as an alternative if a sufficient number should not be produced by the plan of volunteering,
it forms no essential part of the scheme, and my own confident conviction is, that so loyal
is the spirit of the people, and so strong their desire to put themselves in a position etfec
tivelyto defend their homes and institutions, that the number of men proposed to be raised
would have been easily obtained by the voluntary action of the population.
21. Under this plan it was proposed to leave the drill to the spontaneous desire of the
people for learning it; to provide them with all the means of acquiring military knowledge,
andpermit them to adopt the times and seasons most convenient to themselves for its
acquisition. Y
22. I have a stron conviction that if this or some similar plan were put in operation,
a very large amount of rill would be voluntarily submitted to by a considerable proportion
of the inhabitants of Canada. The Citizen Soldiers of the Province would become per
26 Victoria. Sessional Paper’s (No. 15). A. 1863
sonally interested in improving their discipline, and increasing their;.knowlcdge of the
military art; a spirit of emulation amongst difi’erent corps would arise. The complete bat;
talion organization would enable the different regiments to turn out for field exercise on
holidays, and other periods at which they might desire to do so. And on the first outbreak
of war the Province would have an army possessed, not only of the will, which is common
to all Canadians, but of the power to insure that an enem should not obtain a footing in the
country before aid is forthcoming from other portions 0 the Empire.
23. And all this would be done by merely giving systematic form to the voluntary
action of the people, without in any way interfering with their industrial pursuits, trench
ing on their personal freedom of action, or imposing additional pecuniary burdens on the
24. With regard to the suggestion contained in Your Grace’s despateh as to the con
solidation into one force of the Militias of the British North American Provinces, I did
not fail to consult the Lieutenant-Governors of New Brunswick and Nova Scutia, when
they were here last month. The conclusion we arrived at is similar to that expressed in
the Report of the Executive Council of this Province, namely, that the means of commu
nication are not as yet sufliciently easy to enable the three Provinces beneficially to avail
themselves of the services of a common head to their Militia Forces; so that even if other
difliculties in the way of the plan did not suggest’themselves, that would in itself be a bar
to the scheme for the present.
I do not myself believe that the move would be acceptable, either to the Canadians or
to the inhabitants of the Lower “t-ovinces.
I have, &c.,
(Signed,) Monck

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