New Brunswick, House of Assembly, Debates of the House of Assembly [Speech from the Throne] (21 June 1866)


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Date: 1866-06-21
By: New Brunswick (House of Assembly)
Citation: New Brunswick, House of Assembly, Reports of the Debates of The House of Assembly [1866] at 5-6.
Other formats: N/A


Click here to view the rest of New Brunswick’s Confederation Debates for 1866.

HOUSE OF ASSEMBLY.

FREDERICTON, June 21st, 1866.

  • (p. 5)

[…]

At 4 o’clock P. M. His Excellency being seated on the throne in the Legislative Council Chamber, and having commanded the attendance of the House of Assembly, opened the Session with the following

SPEECH:

“Hon. Gentlemen of the Legislative Council,

“Mr. Speaker, and Gentlemen of the House of Assembly,

“The Address of the Legislative Council to Her Majesty the Queen, on the subject of the Union of the British North American Provinces, agreed to during the late Session, was duly transmitted by me to England to be laid at the Foot of the Throne, and I am commanded to inform you that Her Majesty has been pleased to receive the same very graciously.

“The adoption and the reception by me for transmission to Her Majesty of this Address, led to events which rendered it in my opinion expedient to dissolve the then existing General Assembly. I have now much satisfaction in resorting to your assistance and co-operation at the earliest possible moment; although I regret that it should be necessary to call you together at a period of the year which must, I fear, render your assembling a matter of much personal inconvenience to some of you.

“Her Majesty’s Government have already expressed their strong and deliberate opinion, that the union of the British North American Provinces under one Government is an object much to be desired. The Legislatures of Canada and of Nova Scotia have formed the same judgment; and you will now shortly be invited to express your concurrence with or dissent from the view taken of this great question by those provinces.

“You will have learnt with satisfaction that the mad attempt of a band of Fenian conspirators to invade the neighboring Province of Canada has met with signal and merited failure. You will have rejoiced to perceive that the people of the British American Provinces are in every quarter alike firmly resolved to resist and to repel any attack on Her Majesty’s authority and dominion; and you will, I am confident, deeply lament the loss of those brave men who have fallen in the discharge of that sacred duty.

“Information having reached me, which left no room for doubt, that an invasion of this Province by a considerable band of armed and well-organized marauders was seriously contemplated, I lost no time in taking such measures, in conjunction with Vice-Admiral Sir James Hope and Major General Doyle, as appeared to me necessary to meet the emergency. These measures, I rejoice to say, were perfectly successful, and the contemplated attack, which was at one time imminent, was abandoned as an hopeless enterprise.

“You will, I doubt not, concur with me in the expression of gratitude for the promptitude with which the aid of Her Majesty’s Naval and Military Force was rendered on that occasion, and the magnitude of the scale on which it was afforded. Whilst, however, all immediate danger of an attack on the Frontier of New Brunswick appears to have terminated, it is requisite that a strict vigilance should still be exercised with regard to those who may endeavour to revive such projects, or seek to excite dissatisfaction within the Province. It will be for yon to consider whether, under such circumstances, precautions similar to those which have been adopted by the Imperial Parliament and by that of Canada should for a limited period receive your sanction.

“It appeared to me expedient, while the Frontier was menaced with invasion, to call into active service a considerable force of the Provincial Militia. I have to express my entire satisfaction with their conduct whilst under arms, and I rejoice to be enabled to believe that the efforts which, for the last five years, I have unremittingly made to effect improvements in the condition and efficiency of that Force have not proved wholly useless.

“It will be for you to consider whether the termination of the provisions of the Reciprocity Treaty with the United States of America, will render necessary any considerable alteration or modification of the Revenue Laws of this Province.

“I trust that an arrangement may ere long be again concluded which will secure, both to the United States and the British Provinces, the mutual benefits which are likely to ensue from free commercial intercourse between the two countries on a just and satisfactory basis.

“Mr. Speaker, and Gentlemen of the House of Assembly,

“The employment for a considerable period of an armed force upon the frontier has rendered necessary an unusual expenditure for military service; but I am happy to be able to inform you, that there is every prospect that the expenditure of the year will, notwithstanding this unlooked for outlay, be covered by the Revenue received.

“The Accounts of the past and Estimates of the Expenditure for the current year will immediately be laid before you.

  • (p. 6)

“Honorable Gentlemen of the Legislative Council,

“Mr. Speaker, and Gentlemen of the, House of Assembly,

“The question which you are now called together specially to consider is one of the most momentous ever submitted to a Colonial Legislature. Your deliberations will, I doubt not, be undertaken with a due sense of the importance of the interests they involve, and the solemn responsibilities which by your decision you incur, and will, I trust, be conducted with a sole view to the interests of the community at large. That the determination at which you arrive may be one calculated to promote the welfare and happiness, not of this Province only, but one all Her Majesty’s subjects throughout the whole extent of the wide spread dominions of the Queen on this Continent, is my earnest hope and prayer.”

The members of the House of Assembly having returned to the Lower House. His Honor the Speaker read the opening Speech.

Leave was granted to bring in certain Bills.

Mr. Kerr. then moved the following Address in Reply to His Excellcency’s Speech, which was seconded by Mr. Beveridge.

PROPOSED ADDRESS IN ANSWER TO HIS EXCELLENCY’S SPEECH

To His Excellency The Hon. Arthur Hamilton Gordon, C. M. G.. Lieut. Governor and Commander in Chief of the Province of New Brunswick. &c, &c.

THE HUMBLE ADDRESS OF THE HOUSE OF ASSEMBLY.

May it please Your Excellency,

  1. We, Her Majesty’s faithful subjects, the Commons of New Brunswick, thank Your for your Speech at the opening of the present Session.
  1. We learn with pleasure that Her Majesty the Queen graciously received the Address of the Legislative Council. on the subject of the Union of the British North American Provinces. transmitted to England by Your Excellency.
  1. We agree with Your Excellency that the adoption and reception by Your Excellency, for transmission to Her Majesty of this Address on the subject of the Union. led to events which rendered it expedient to dissolve the late General Assembly, and we believe that the Constituencies of the Province have justified the course adopted by Your Excellency..Although it is an inconvenient season of the year for the discharge of Legislative duties, we will cheerfully co-operate with Your Excellency in the transaction of such business and the perfecting of such measures as the public interest demands.
  1. We know that Her Majesty’s Government have expressed a strong and deliberate opinion that the union of the British North American Provinces is an object much to be desired, and that the Legislature of Canada and of Nova Scotia concur in this view, and Your Excellency may rely with confidence on our cordial co-operation in any measure which may be proposed to secure that object.
  1. We learn with much satisfaction that the Fenian conspirators have met with signal and merited failure in their wicked and mad attempt to invade the neighboring Province of Canada. We feel assured that the people of British North America are everywhere resolved to resist every attempt upon Her Majesty’s authority and dominion, and they equally lament with you the loss of those brave men of Canada who have fallen in the discharge of their sacred duty.
  1. We thank Your Excellency for taking in conjunction with Vice-Admiral Sir James Hope, and Major General Doyle, the necessary measures to secure the people of the Province from the effect of the invasion of an armed body of marauders; and we are gratified to learn that the measures adopted were perfectly successful, and that the contemplated attack, which was at one time imminent, was abandoned.
  1. We unite with Your Excellency in the expression of gratitude for the promptness with which the aid of Her Majesty’s Naval and Military Forces was then rendered, and the magnitude of the scale on which it was afforded.
  1. We agree with Your Excellency in the conviction that, although all immediate danger of an attack has passed away, necessary precautionary measures should be adopted and strict vigilance observed with regard to those who may endeavour to revive projects of invasion or excite disaffection in the Province, and we will consider whether the precautionary measures adopted by the Imperial and Canadian Parliaments, are not required in New Brunswick in the present emergency.
  1. We were fully prepared to learn that. the conduct of the Militia Force called out by Your Excellency whilst the Province was menaced with invasion, met with Your Excellency’s approbation, and we rejoice that the efforts which have been made to improve that branch of the public service were attended with advantage.
  1. We will consider whether the termination of the Reciprocity Treaty with the United States of America. will render necessary any considerable alteration or modification of the “Revenue Laws of the Province; and we unite with Your Excellency in expressing the hope that ere long some arrangement may be ‘again concluded which will secure to both the United States and the British Provinces, the mutual benefits which would result from the establishment of a reciprocal trade on equitable terms.
  1. We rejoice to be informed that the expenditure of this year will be covered by the Receipts, notwithstanding the unlooked for outlay, occasioned by the employment for a considerable period, of an armed force upon the Frontier.
  1. We thank Your Excellency for having directed the Accounts of the Receipts and Expenditure of the current year, to be laid before us.
  1. We agree with Your Excellency in the opinion that the question of the Union of the British North American Provinces, upon which the people of New Brunswick have recently expressed so strong an opinion, and which Your Excellency has called us together to consider, is the most momentous ever submitted to a Colonial Legislature. We shall approach the consideration.of the question with a due sense of the importance of the issues involved and the solemn responsibility devolving upon us as Representatives of a free people. Our deliberations shall be conducted with a single view to the promotion of their interests; and we fervently pray that our determination may be calculated to promote the welfare and happiness of all Her Majesty’s subjects in the wide-spread dominion of the Queen on this Continent.

 

[…]

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