New Brunswick, House of Assembly, Reports of the Debates (1 May 1865)
By: New Brunswick (House of Assembly)
Citation: New Brunswick, House of Assembly, Reports of the Debates of The House of Assembly of the Province of New Brunswick, During the Session of 1865 at 11-17.
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HOUSE OF ASSEMBLY.
MONDAY, May 1.
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Mr. Boyd moved for leave to bring in a Bill for the preservation of Deer on the Island of Grand Manan, and also presented a petition from certain parties, that an Act may pass providing for the same.
Hon. Mr. Allen moved for leave to bring in a Bill to authorize the erection of a Sorting Room near the lower bridge on the Nashwaak.
Mr. Gilbert moved for leave to bring in a Bill to provide for Simultaneous Elections throughout the Province
Mr. Sutton asked the Speaker if any provision had been made for the services of a Law Clerk.
The Speaker had no information on the subject.
Mr. Kerr said, he understood that a gentleman was now engaged drafting Bills for the members of the House, and he would like to know whether he was engaged by the House, or by private members.
Mr. Boyd was in favor of the appointment of a Law Clerk. Although he had personally been very successful in drawing up Bills, yet he believed that the services of a competent Clerk would greatly facilitate the business of the Session.
Mr. Gilbert never thought a Law Clerk necessary, and did not think there had been one till the last House had created the office. The honorable members composing the present House were presumed to be wise and discreet, and he thought quite competent to draft their own Bills, and as he believed every unnecessary expense should be reduced, he would draw up a resolution that services of a Law Clerk be dispensed with.
Mr. Sutton thought it hardly necessary to bring in a motion to dispense with the office, for, so far as this House was concerned, no such office was in existence.
Mr. Gilbert said, it was very easy to ascertain the opinion of the House on the question, and he would, therefore, move that it is not desirable that the office of Law Clerk, created by the last House, be continued.
Hon. Mr. Smith said, it would be absurd to pass such a resolution, as it was well understood that the offices created by the last House had nothing whatever to do with the present.
Mr. Gilbert said if the House so understood it, he would withdraw his motion.
Mr. Boyd then moved that a Law Clerk be employed to prepare Bills for this House.
Mr. Connell said, that in doing away with that office, the House would not be acting right towards many of the members. Those engaged in agricultural pursuits, and others, were not so able at legal forms as the honorable member for Westmorland. The argumentative talents, and legal knowledge of that gentleman were not shared by some others, and there were members who were young in the House who would find it difficult to draft a Bill without the aid of a Law Clerk. He should, therefore, vote for the resolution.
On division, the motion was negatived. The House, on motion of Mr. Otty, took up the order of the day, and the discussion on the Address in Reply.
FIFTH PARAGRAPH, AND MR. KERR’S AMENDMENT RESUMED.
Mr. Wetmore.—I mentioned to the House on Saturday, that I thought there was nothing in the existing law on the Statute Book to prevent the Government taking action with regard to Railway Extension. On looking over the law, I cannot find anything that would directly prevent them. But then there is no law to prevent murder, but simply to punish those who commit that crime. Although there is nothing in the law to prevent the Government from carrying on Railway extension, yet there is such a thing as public faith, and if the late Government entered into any arrangement with parties to engage in the work, the credit so pledged ought to be maintained. On looking over the Facility Bill — sometimes called the Lobster Bill — I find in the fourth section, a certain bonus is given to any company who, by conforming to certain requirements, fulfil the terms of the act. Under this Bill, passed by the last House, a company was formed in St. John, who obtained an act of Incorporation, under the title of the European and North American Railway Western Extension Company.
The Legislature held out certain inducements which should accrue to parties complying with certain acts. The company in St. John was formed, and a large amount of stock secured, and before Declaration day in St. John, it was said that a gentleman — Mr. Parks — had gone to England to get such stock taken up there as would enable the company to carry on the work. There is no doubt, but that Mr. Parks has gone for that purpose, and the talents and energy possessed by that gentleman leaves no room to suppose but that everything will be done to accomplish the object of his mission. If an individual makes a certain offer to another, and arranges to do certain things, if certain acts are complied with, — if that individual fails to fulfil the engagements entered into, there is a Court of Chancery through which the injured party can obtain redress for his grievances, but when engagements are entered into with a Government, and they fail to perform, there is no redress; there is nothing but the good faith of that Government to rely on as a guarantee of the fulfillment of the promises made.
I feel assured that the present Government are embarrassed in their action by the engagements entered into by the late Government, and that there are certain rights existing under the acts on the Statute Book which prevents further legislation. I am glad that the Government have, in as strong terms as they could, held out to the people of the country the promise of Western Extension, as soon as circumstances will permit. If it was not for existing laws, and engagements entered into under them, the want of means to carry on the work would not have been as great a barrier as some seem to imagine. My only regret is, that the Government could not proceed, but I am satisfied they will do so as soon as possible, and, therefore, under these circumstances, shall vote that the paragraph pass.
Mr. Connell.— The subject of Railways has been before this country for a long time. In 1837 the first move was made, and from the time the first grant from the casual revenue was made down to the present, not a year has passed but the subject has been discussed in this House. It is much to be regretted that the statement has been put forth here that the legislation of the last Session is not intended to be amended by the present Government. I think the country looks for this. I have always been in favor of measure which like these tend to open up and improve the country.
True, at the first there were great difficulties about the St. John and Shediac Railway; but gradually these were overcome, and now we have that road. Still, in consequence of having no connection at either end, it is of little value to the country, as it involves a large expenditure of money without any adequate return. It is satisfactory, however, to know that it is one of the best constructed roads in British North America. But it is not my purpose to go into the subject of that Railroad. I believe it is necessary for the prosperity of this country that the Government take some immediate action with regard to the extension Westward. I do not think the statement made by them in the paragraph under discussion is a very correct one. I should like to ask the Government if they have made any effort to ascertain the nature of the difficulties spoken of, and if they cannot be removed.
I very much doubt if any difficulties really exist to prevent further legislation in this matter. Will the hon. member for St. John tell the House whether it is the intention of the people of the County of St. John, who have taken up stock, to raise obstacles to the carrying out of this work? Is not the course laid down meant rather to assist the Government to get rid of the responsibility resting upon them, which, I admit, is great? I believe the Treasury is nearly empty — then why do they speak of the improved state of the finances of the country? I am surprised that the Government should have laid the Speech of His Excellency on the table without propounding to the House the policy they intend to pursue.
I believe it is customary for the mover of the Address to define the policy of the Government and the course they intend to pursue. I should have been pleased to have heard the President of the Council state the policy and course of the Government. He has not seen fit to do so; but they come and lay the Speech before us, and the only statement they make in explanation of their intentions is the introduction of a Bill for the abolition of the office of the Postmaster General. I do not now intend to speak on that subject; but when it comes up I shall state to the House the opinions I entertain as to the importance of that office to the commercial and financial interests of the country. I would, however, ask if we are to go back to the irresponsible mode of carrying on the public business which once existed here.
If this Address pass, the office of the Postmaster General goes back into the hands of the parties who are totally irresponsible to the country; and I am prepared with facts and figures to show that such a course would be most destructive to the postal interests of the Province. It is an office second to no other. When I had the honor to hold that office I performed the duties it involved, and carried into effect decisions of the Council. I did not, however, on every little matter consult with them, nor should I if I held such an office again, for I believe that it detracts from the furtherance of the interests of public business.
This is the only reform — but I call it destruction—[…]
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[…] I see foreshadowed in reference to this matter. If the Government intend to refer to the course to be pursued by the heads of Departments, I hope they will inform the country,— which is looking to the House that something may be done— that they will assume the country that something will be done to stop the tide of emigration from this Province. Unless some steps are taken by the development of resources of the country; unless public works are inaugurated to improve the state of the country, young men will leave as fast as they can: and I should like to have seen some assurance given that some measures would be introduced for the good of this Province in this respect. It is said: Let them depend on their own exertions; but when there is little or nothing on which their exertions can be effectually expended, they will go away to places where they can do better.
Look at our Exports. The country once depended on its lumber, but now almost every move in that direction entails a loss. I am sorry in looking over the Speech to see nothing having reference to the mineral resources of the country. The time has come when these, if properly fostered and encouraged by judicious legislation, would make a vast improvement in the labour and industry of this Province. Look at the coal mines of Albert and Queen’s Counties; is anything being done to encourage the development of their riches? When in the Government I was instrumental in producing a grant of $2000 to develop our mineral resources, and I now consider it to be one of the first and most important points to be looked after by a Government.
Unfortunately many of these mines are in the hands of individuals who cannot work them to advantage, (Hon. Mr. Smith; ” Would you take them out of their hands?”) I would do something to encourage monied men to come to the Province and buy them, even if they had to pay and exorbitant price for them, rather than they should remain as they are. I know gentlemen at the present time who are willing to go into the working up of the coal districts, but what would be the use of spending five, ten or twenty thousand dollars without seeing a chance for a return? I think the Government should take hold of this matter.
Again, there is a large quantity of iron in the district in which I reside indeed there the most valuable iron is found of any place in the Provinces. Where is every facility for working it, plenty of wood for firing, but what is the state of things, what is the fact? Last year a gentleman from England said to a gentleman interested in the working of the mines and who was desirous of obtaining the assistance of capitalists, “Your iron is without doubt very valuable, there is wood and every other requisite for the working, but till we can ascertain by the action of the Colonies that they intend to provide for the defences of the country it would not be safe to invest money in the work.”
If we could have obtained Confederation there would have been no difficulty. I believe that if the majority of the people were able to express their opinion on that question to-day, they would decide its favour. The people in the section of the country where I reside know the value that connection would have been. I have often invited the President of the Council to go up and visit that part, and I now extend the invitation to the Hon. Surveyor General. I hope he will come and see for himself the value of the mineral resources we possess and that the next Speech will have something to say about it. We have the iron, we have the wood and coal. and for three months in the year we have water communication but for the other nine months we no outlet for the productions of the country. Lumber with us is nearly run out, and it is to be hoped the people will now leave off a business not good for the country and engage in some operations that will prove more beneficial.
At the first we had a company at work, but their operations did not prove successful. Now the company are working right. They have one furnace and another partially completed, but unless they receive some assistance from the Government by opening up communication it is doubtful if they will be long able to continue on. The expense of carrying on the works is very large; wood and coal can only be brought in at prices that make the labor unremunerative. This matter is most important.
Hon. Mr. Smith.—What, do you want a railway?
Mr. Connell.—Yes, we want you to build it now. The Government have not shewn to the country that I have done anything to remove the difficulties said to exist, which precludes them from carrying on Western Extension. It appears that the only way in which they are at all bound, is by the offer of Mr. Livesey to build the line to the Nova Scotia boundary. But what does that amount to? The offer was accepted on certain conditions, which have not yet been fulfilled. It seems that somebody has been at work in order to obtain the building of the line from the Bend through the County of Westmorland, and that that work is to go on, whatever else is done. This arrangement however, has nothing to do with Western Extension. I do not see that it stands in the way at all. If it does, I should like to see some paper from the last Government; shewing that difficulties really do exist. It is said with regard to the company formed in St. John, that the President, now in England, has written back that nothing can be done there.
Hon. Mr. Hatheway.—Do you think that Mr. Tilley would now sell out his Stock?
Mr. Connell.—I believe he would, since it appears the company will not be able to go on. The arrangement with Mr. Livesey seems to be the only difficulty in the way, if a difficulty really exist. The railway in operation has been managed well, but the Government appear to desire to be relieved from all responsibility with regard to extended works. Col. Boyd is the only member now in the House—Mr. Wilmot and I came in shortly after—who heard the first speech made before this House by Sir. J. Harvey. He said his Government would lead the way, but it was for the Legislature to act.— I am glad to see that the President of the Council has changed his views on the question of railways. He has a perfect right to change his mind, and I hope he will change it on the subject of Confederation. Whenever anything is said on this question, the honorable member looks over at me. It is said the Government was formed on the principle of Confederation. If such be the case, Mr. Speaker, I appeal to you, whether a Government founded on one question alone, without a reference to the general interests of the country, can have the confidence of the people. The honorable member for Northumberland has said that he could not support the present Government because of the conservative element in it.
Mr. Williston.—Mr. Speaker, I made no such observation. I merely said, that I could not support them in this matter. I could not vote for this part of the speech.
Mr. Connell.—If the honorable member did not say so, I stand corrected, although I was of opinion he did say it, but no matter. So far as the Government is concerned, it makes no difference to me now, that I am speaking in reference to their action with regard to their railway policy, for if they will go to work and carry out a good policy, I will support them. Ithink that something like the following, instead of the paragraph under debate, would have been more satisfactory to the people : ” We will consider whether further facilities can be afforded for the extension of Railways in this Province. We are pleased to learn that the completion and extension of the European and North American Railway, from the frontier of Nova Scotia to the boundary of the United States, will be undertaken as soon as the necessary legislation can be had thereon.” I want the country to understand, that this work will go on when legislation can be had upon it. But I wish to refer to the Speech generally. ” We share with Your Excellency the feelings of satisfaction at the prospect of the speedy restoration of peace in the neighboring Republic.”
Everybody must rejoice at the speedy close of the war, but still must deeply regret what has taken place with regard to the death of the President. I have been in that section of country, and seen the devastation and destruction that have taken place there. I have seen the battle fields and the hospitals, and know the evils resulting from the civil war; and hon. members who have not witnessed them, must all regret the strife which has raged there. On hearing the news of the death of the President, I was very much struck with surprise and regret, and was glad to see the feelings of sympathy which was expressed. I had the pleasure of a personal interview with the President. A kinder- hearted man did not exist; his countenance showed it. His death is a loss to the nation —a loss that must be felt to be great at the present time. I am rejoiced at the expressions of sorrow which has pervaded the minds of all on this Continent on this subject. Every friend to humanity must abhor the act of the murderer.
I next come to the Confederation business. I shall not make any remarks on this further than to say, that when the resolution comes before the House, I shall state my views on the subject. They are known now in the country. I thought I was correct in the judgment I formed of the scheme, and I think so yet. We must either provide for the defence of this country or let it alone. It is the duty of Government to see to the proper defence of the Colony, or the had better let legislation alone. If Confederation had taken place, I would have voted for the appropriating of such a sum as would be suited for the purpose according to our means. But until they adopt this policy I shall not vote away a shilling, except for such small affairs as are absolutely indispensible.
Look at the report of Col. Jervois. He says that beyond Kingston it is futile to provide for the defence of Canada. On this account I believe Confederation would have proved a benefit, so that we should have had a means for defence, and further means which we could probably have obtained from the British Government; but for us to attempt to provide for the defence alone is futile. The […]
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[…] people of the United States do not want nor desire a war with us, but the feeling with regard to the Alabama and our vessels is very strong. The President of the United States, in speaking to the Lord Palmerston, remarked, that he was a great statesman, but wrong in the course he pursued with regard to the Alabama. The people do not desire war; but they number their population by millions, and soon there will e large bodies of men, who have acquired a military ardor, out work, — these will be found going to Mexico and Canada.
Hon. Mr. Smith — Do you expect war?
Mr. Connell. — I express my honest convictions that these men will leave the States and go to Canada, Mexico, Cuba, and parts of South America. I am glad to see that the Canadians are determined to se what the British Government is is going to do. Some of the hon. members think the people here do not want connection with Canada, and other that the connections was too speedy. I saw that throughout the canvass the honorable President of the Council opposed it only on the grounds of the time. (Mr. Smith — “O, no.”) And we have the word of the hon. member for Kent that his first object was to turn out the existing Government and then see what was to be done. (Mr. DesBrisay — “I did not say that.”) The matter with regard to the Militia Bill, the Post Office, and the Union of the Colonies, will come up hereafter and be discussed, I presume. I do not wish to take up the time, as this is to be a short Session.
I see the hon. member is going to speak and I hope he will show us some plan by which the country can raise money without paying interest. I think something might be done in this matter. The time has come when it is necessary to fix on some solid basis for our Banking interests. I am sure the people would be benefitted if a different state of things existed. In New York the people feel secure. The way they work in Canada I have not looked into if this Railway goes on, some plan could be matured by which the Province could issue notes which would be a legal tender for duties and all other things. There are many other things I should like to have seen in the Speech, but will not now go into them. In reference to the Railway, I hope the Government will take immediate action on it. If it is not carried on great evils will fall upon the country; young men and old men too, that can get away will leave. The people want Railways, and it is just as well to have them at once. There is no source of wealth so good for the Province.
Hon. Mr. Wilmot — I thought the hon. member for Carleton was going to oppose the action of the present Government, but find at the close he intends to support it, or that at least he will offer no factious opposition to their measures. With regard to the clause of the Address under debate, I think it already shows that the Government intend to proceed with the work as soon as existing legislation admits. The hon. member for Northumberland say they are opposed to the prosecution of Western Extension as a Government work, but are willing it should be carried on by a company. I think the Government should not have their hands tied up by the passing of these amendments. I would ask the hon. member for Northumberland if the question was on a road from Sherdiac to Chatham if they would oppose it as a Government work, I rather think they would want it left open to be carried on as would be found best. I hope the hon. member will be induced to withdraw his amendment, and give the Government a chance to go on with the public business. The hon. member for Carleton wants the work to go on at once; but let the Government have time. The hon. member, Mr. Boyd, and myself are the oldest members of the House.
When Railways were first mooted I moved a resolution which, if noted on, would have prevented our being burdened with a heavy foreign debt. I thought then that Treasury notes should have been issued, and I think so still. That was in 1849, just after the great depression of 1847. Now we have experiences in constructing roads; we have plenty of labor if we had the money to employ it; there is lumber to make the sleepers, material and skilled mechanics to erect station-houses and all other works. The only articles we really need to import is the iron rails to lay the track. My object always has been to employ the labor of our own country, and I hope the time will soon come when we shall be able to make our own rails. I have always been in favour of progress and free trade; but while the made gold the basis for paying the debt, it was important that the imports should exceed the exports, as otherwise it would cause a panic and crisis.
We have seen what has been done in the United States, and the plans they have adopted to raise means to carry on their great undertakings. The House will have to see in what way Railways can best be provided for. I heard in St. John that there were a million dollars lying in the Bank at three per cent interest. If we had an issue of Province notes as in Prince Edward Island we could raise money to carry on our public works as the House well knows. The revenue last year was $1,080,000. I shall not, however, go into figures, but I hope the House will give the Government a chance to do something. They do not intend to be a do nothing government, nor to enter upon works which will embarrass and distress the Province. All they ask is to be allowed time to mature their plans and carry out a policy which shall be for the welfare of the country.
Mr. Sutton— When I was elected to a seat in this House, I was not pledged to the support of any Government, neither was I sent to support Confederation, for Confederation was dead before the election took place, but I was returned pledged to oppose this measure. Few as the public woks are which this Government have introduced, they have introduced one too many for me. I have had the pleasure to shake hands with the President of the United States, although I deplore the commission of a crime, the result of which has filled all hearts with sorrow. But with regard to this question. Last year the people of the North paid $2,300 to the support of the Railway from St. John to Shediac. This line is of very little advantage to them and I think it would be an act of injustice to them to make them pay a further sum to push the extension to the Western frontier. If the people of Saint John have confidence that the Railway will be of so much benefit to them, — and they will get the benefit if any body does — let them take stock in the company and assist in building it. There are four Counties in the North that would receive little or no benefit from this extension.
Why did not the Government foreshadow the construction of a line to the North? If this had been done, we might have had machinery at work and care building in Chatham. I remember the promise of an honorable member for York, that we should have rail for rail, spade for spade, sleeper for sleeper but it does not seem to be the intention of Government to pursue that plan. We have had experience in the building of Railways and the honorable member for Saint John must know that the cost of construction would be much greater to the Government than it would be to a company like that formed. The roads and bridges are in a bad state, and require heavy expenses to put them in a good condition. The roads from Chatham to Richibucto is said to be so bad that it is almost impossible to get along. I have worked for years, side by side, with some of the members of the present Government and know their ability, but on this point I cannot give them my support, If my honorable friend and colleague saw the injury that will be done to the people of the North by this measure, he would not stay in any Government who determined to carry on the work.
Mr. Needham — I wish the hon. member for Charleton were in his place to hear my remarks. With regard to the hon. member for Northumberland’s remarks, there are always two sides to a story. Believing, and knowing as I did, that Western Extension included a line to Chatham, I did make the remark that I would go for their having rail for rail. But, as Western Extension was the basis of the whole thing, as he is opposed to our end of the line, of course I am absolved from my remark — This is an important measure, but before coming to it, I wish to follow the example of other hon. members who have spoken on the Speech, and introduced a good many things outside of it. No man having any regard for humanity, or the principles of right and wring, can do otherwise than endorse the expressions of the Speech and Reply, respecting the death of the President of the United States. It is not often the case in the present day that the head of a nation falls by the hand of an assassin, and the effect of this blow will be felt not only by every manly heart on this continent, but by those on the other side of the Atlantic.
It is well known that from the time of the firing of the first gun at Sumter to the present, my sympathies have been in favour of the North. But with regard to Railways, and I am glad the hon. member for Carleton is now in his seat, I do not quite understand the position he takes. He is surely not willing to take the right of building Railways given to companies, by existing acts, from them, for this principle if extended would deprive the people of Queen’s from the right to the coal mines, and deprive Carleton of their iron. Any man who would pursue such a course, and take Stock away from any company, ought not to be permitted to stand on the floors of this House. I am opposed to the building of Railways by companies, as I think is should be Government work. Still rights granted to companies must be maintained, but if the conditions are not complied with, then I believe the work should be carried on by Government and with a due regard to the interests of the different parts of the Province. The hon. member for St. John has fully explained the principle of the private rights of individuals, and how the law slips to restrain any infractions of those rights. I cannot go for this amendment.
There was a time when I was on the floor of the House with the hon. members for Carleton and the remark of his to-day, brings back to the remembrance of old times. It was when he said, “Something must be done.” I have not heard it since the time we were […]
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[…] on the floors together before, and then I spoke of his laying sacrilegious hands on King’s College. When he made the remark that something must be done, it put me in mind of a story (which I related to the House) of three boys. They were named respectively, Charles, James and John. These boys were out in the fields together when a heavy rain storm came on, and they took refuge under a tree. Whilst standing there the tree was struck by lightning and overturned, the roots tearing up the ground all round, and got the boys into a bad scrape. Charles turns round to James and asks, “Can you pray?” “No.” “John can you pray?” “No.” “Well, by hokey something must be done.” The honorable member says, that the Government was formed on the principle of Federation, then why does he look for any measures from them. But I always thought this Government was formed on Anti-Confederation principles. If they are not, they can’t have my support. Confederation was not dead when I was elected, but it received its death blow at my election. (Laughter.)
I am glad that reference is made to this subject in the Speech, and that the report of the delegates is to be laid on the table. I hope when it is brought in and laid there, no hand will be raised to disturb its everlasting repose. Reference has been made to the remarks made by hon. members in their canvas, and on the hustings; I think this unnecessary, as almost any man is the best of a political contest, will say something or other that he can’t sustain afterward. That scheme was replete with financial destruction, and political ruin to this country. When I heard that $2.75 was put forth as the probable tax per capita, I said that manner of arriving as it was not honest — it was a political trick. It was made up on the whole population.
Now, the 250,000 inhabitants of this country don’t pay taxes, but only, about 71,000, and if the rate were made up in this way, it would give some $12.90 per head The city of Fredericton is taxed some $10,000 a year; the population is 6,000. Now, I know very well that if you divide the ten by six you get one and something over, but $1 and something over is not the tax the people pay. No, that would be on men, women, children, and babies, and they don’t do anything towards the avenue that I know of, unless they do in Carleton.
Mr. Lindsay — “Don’t they wear clothes?”
Mr. Needham — Yes, when they’ve got them. My honorable friend, Mr. Connell says that three-fourths of this people are in favor of Confederation. I tell him it is not the case. It is the opinion that there are not three quarters of Carleton, nor a half, nor a third, in its favor.
Mr. Connell — How do you know?
Mr. Needham — Because I believe what the people tell me; I believe if the subject were submitted to the County, the ballot boxes set up every few miles, and the people provided with ballots — Confederation — No Confederation — the result would be that not one-third of this country would be in favor of it. It was a scheme connected in Canada to suit their own locality. They may have been educated, as it was stated, by desires for fair dealing with us, but what honesty is there in saying, if you give us all your revenue be it what may, we will give you $250,000 out of it for yourself as long as you live. The good old Judge Marshall of Nova Scotia has shown that in fifty years this arrangement would have swamped the whole of us. What would have become of us if the scheme had been carried. Where would we have got the fifteen members to go in the general government?
Who among us could compete with the members up in Canada. In forty years our revenue would have been $4,000,000, and we should have got some $201,000 for our own use whilst the balance would have gone to them. No man is worth the name of a statesman who legislates merely for to-day. He should look into and provide for the future, for if he don’t live for ever, somebody else will. I have said the scheme possessed the germs of political destruction, and so it does. The only link that now binds us to the mother country is the appointment of His Excellency as our Governor. Judge Halliburton may say in England that the people of New Brunswick are disloyal, but who believes it? I wish I had Sam Slick here. This link that binds us to England was to have been broken and our Governor was to be appointed, and sent down from that place up there is Shogermoc. (A member — “Ottawa,”)
Yes Ottawa. The cat was then let out of the bag, but there was not a white hair on it, not even on the tip of her tail. They talk about my being noticed in the papers, well that’s good: for you know that’s an honor anyway (laughter.)
The delegates went to Prince Edward Island and met. Now I hold that notwithstanding His Excellency by the advice of the Governor General, appointed delegates to meet other delegates, yet he had no right to sanction their acts. The Canadians were just arranging for a Union of Upper and Lower Canada, and hearing of the proposed Legislative Union down here, came down, broke up our Convention, and got themselves all re-appointed to meet again in Canada. Now this was right enough as long as they only met to deliberate, but they had no right to draw up a protocol, such as they did. When they got back here they found it necessary to go round the country and stir up the people. It put me in ind of one of Aesop’s fables. A certain animal, called a monkey went out on a little travelling expedition, (I don’t know whether he went to Quebec or not) but one thing is certain, but some means or other he got back without a very important appendage.
Of course the other monkeys came round to see such a strange sight, and so to get them all into the same fix as himself, he told them that was the fashion where he came from, and advised them to follow his example. It was just so with the delegates. They went to Quebec, lost their tails, and on coming back want us all to cut off ours. The hon. member for Carleton County says if the young men are going away; so they are here. Some time ago there were some seven or eight who started off to join the war because they thought they could make more by going than by staying here. That’s right enough. It is the case everywhere, but that is not a good place to live in. People take the notion of going away from a place. I know a whole lot who went off to Salt Lake, to the Mormons. Did the country suffer by that?
No, because it saved us the trouble of putting them in a lunatic asylum, and the expense of supporting them there. The honorable member says he knows all about the Post Office. There is no doubt of it. He says he did things without consulting with his colleagues in the Government, and I believe him. The honorable member now asks the Hon. Surveyor General to make a visit up to his part of the country. Well if he can’t go, there is one thing he can do, get himself photographed and send his picture Perhaps that would do as well? Now I am not in the Government, I haven’t been and I don’t intend to be — till the time comes. But this principle laid down by the honorable member for Carleton of doing things without the consent of his colleagues is anew one to me. Since the creation of the office of Post Master General there has been an annual deficiency of about $20,000.
Mr. Connell — What was it before?
Mr. Needham — It never amounted to that sum before. I believe the Post Office department was conducted just as well under the old regime as now.
AFTERNOON SESSION — 2:30 P.M.
Mr. Williston read a further report from the Contingent Committee, recommending that as the house had made provision for the publication of the Debates furnished by official reporters, no allowance of money be granted to members of the press representing newspapers; yet, being sensible of the benefit of a diffused information, they recommend that they be provided with such stationary as they may need. One coach had been agreed to for the use of House, and they further recommended the employment of another by the Sergeant-at-Arms to expedite the businesss — Received.
THE DEBATE ON THE FIFTH PARAGRAPH RESUMED
Mr. Needham — I agreed with the hon. member for Carleton in his remarks on the President of the United States; but when he came down to the question of defence, I thought he would have used some sound argument on the subject. I think some other plan than that pursued should have been adopted by the Opposition, but with regard to defence, I am of opinion that if this country were able to spend even ten times the amount of the revenues of this Province and of Canada, it would all amount to nothing if we were assailed. The report of Col. Jervois perfectly shows this. With regard to our natural defence — the Militia — when the question comes up I shall express my opinions upon it. I will now say, that if we had a lot of officers well drilled, provided with clothing, guns, and ammunition, it would be better than turning out the whole of the Province, to forget in three hours what they have learned in three days. If a plan of this kind could be arranged, I think that in connection with the volunteer movement and the regular army, it would prove effective; but I believe our best defense is not to talk so much about war.
As to war between Great Britain and the United States, we have only to turn to the papers to see the ministers in the British Parliament declaring that the two Governments never stood on a better footing than at present, that should differences arise they could only be settled by arbitration and diplomacy. We may beat them at that, but we could not by putting the country in a state of defence. I do not want my words to be understood as conveying an idea that we would quietly sit down and submit to invasion. Not at all. I am sure if the time came, the country would rise and join heart and hand to resist the spoiler of our hearths and homes. (A Member — “We could lick them.”)
It is all very well to talk about licking, but when the lick comes, perhaps it would be found best to let licking alone. I agree with my honorable friend that the lumbering interests are becoming useless. I have made up my mind to one thing, and […]
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[…] that is, that this giving to great lumbering men the right to cut out some 20, 30 or 40 miles of timber land should be abolished. The plan I think should be adopted of selling by the thousand.
I agree in what has been said as to our Mines and Minerals. I believe that either I or the Government, before the Session closes, will show that we have faith in these resources by employing a competent gentleman to make a thorough geological survey of the Province, and see what we really have here.
All I have to say is, that if the Government will carry out Railway Extension according to the law, either by themselves or by engagements with companies, they shall receive my support. The people must and will have Western Extension. The Government are new men, filling new offices, and I am willing to give them a chance. I believe they should have at least three or four days to feel the honors laid upon them. But afterwards, if they do not inaugurate a policy of extended works, then they must know that there are people in this country and House who will do so. I say this to show the Government that I am willing to aid them in carrying out Western Extension.
Another thing, I am willing to go the whole hog to show the British Government that we are sincere, and that we do not want to sever the connection existing between us, or annex ourselves to the States, (for I do not believe this feeling resides in the breast of one man). I want them to know that the reason we rejected the Scheme was because we love the connection with our mother country, and that the very men who voted against, are willing, if necessary, to shed every drop of their blood in defence of her cause and institutions.
Mr. McMillan. — The member for York has made a long Speech with very little touching the matter under discussion. I am not finding fault with the Government for not carrying on Western Extension, for I believe the revenues of the country are in too low a state to admit of it; and are not only so now, but will be for years to come in too feeble a state to carry on the work of the main trunk without taking into consideration the branches. The expense of this work alone will entail a burden of $260,000 a year upon the country. But I do find fault because they assign reasons for not carrying on the work that do not in reality exist. The Company with which arrangements were made have not fulfilled the conditions of that engagement. Before they can claim anything from this Province, they have to show that they have fulfilled the conditions; that they have provided sufficient funds, and that they really intend to go on with the work by commencing to build a portion of the line. Before the statement made with regard to them can be sustained, they have to do certain things which as yet are undone. But supposing that they had done all that was required of them, was not this law on the Statute Book a year ago? Did not the hon. member for St. John know of this law when he made the statement on the hustings that the work must be carried on at once as a Government measure?
Since that time no engagements have been entered into which would prevent the road from being carried on. I believe the position taken by the Government sufficient in itself to kill the company in Saint John. We find by the hon. member of the government, the hon. member for Northumberland, that it is not the intention of the Government to proceed with the work, whilst the President of the Council says it will be proceeded with. (Hon. Mr. Smith ” No, No.”) I would call the attention of the hon. member for St. John (Mr. Anglin) to an article in the Freeman under the signature of A. I (and for which, whoever writes, he holds himself responsible,) in which, after reference to the clause of the address under debate, he says that he “hopes the existing legislation will not prevent the Government from going on with the work. ” — Now I want to know how the intend to carry it on. There is another point.
As I understand the answer to the Speech, it is intended to foreshadow the action of the Government not in the future, not a year or two hence, but at the present time. The Answer now under debate, however, does not seem to claim this for its object this Session. I believe the financial condition of country for years to come will not admit of the Government carrying on the work. The cost of the main trunk to the country, without the branches, will amount to $268,000 a year, and if the branches are built to the sum of $390,000. I am not in a position therefore to vote for the Government to carry on this work, and I hope the hon. member for Northumberland in the Government will not do his constituents the great injustice of laying this burden upon them. If they want the road to be built, why not assist the company by still further facilities without undertaking the whole work as a Government measure. I am in favor of the Amendment.
Mr. Wetmore said in his Speech he had referred to the Act to build extension Westward and to the Facility Bill. He wished just to call the attention of the House to the 13th Section of the Bill which provides that companies, to entitle them to any claims allowed by the Act, must commence to build the road within two years. He merely wished to show up honorable members that if any company complied with conditions within that time they would be in a position to make a claim for the grant.
Hon. Mr. Anglin. — I have not spoken as yet, as I thought I would let honorable members have an opportunity to express their opinions, so that I might know what ground to take. I was surprised at the opening attack by the hon. member on my left (Mr. Gilbert). Many of the members seemed much hurt by his remarks, but I considered that he paid the highest tribute he could have done to the Government, for he saw that the Government ought to have done in forty-eight hours from its formation what would take and ordinary one seven years to work out. He must have believed the members of the Government to be men of unparalelled ability, if he imagined they could have even treated upon all the subjects he mentioned. The hon. member for Restigouche has given the same speech which I have heard before — the same cuckoo cry — that he was not opposed to the Government, but the finances of the country would not admit of further Railway Extension.
I think the words of the speech are definite. It distinctly states that the work will be proceeded with as soon as practicable, Oh but it is said, one member of the Government —who was not then a member of any Government — said on the hustings, that he would not belong to a Government that would act at once proceed with the work. It is not expected that he can drag along seven or eight other men with him to prosecute his ideas, without time for them to mature their plans. What that member said, he repeats, that when the Government fails to carry out plans which he thinks are for the benefit of the country, he will no longer remain a member of that Government. Oh, but the finances are low. Yes, but what did a then honorable member say on platforms in St. John about this Western Extension. He said that first there was the $10,000 a mile — an out an out gift, the amount of Stock subscribed, then the stock taken by the City of $400,000, and if sufficient could not be raised after this, he was willing to guarantee to provide the balance of the cost at six per cent. This proposition was put forth by those who now are so fearful of burdening the revenues. We are not here to judge the late Government.
This Government, however, distinctly state their policy. They says existing legislation precludes us from taking action ona anything that would infringe on the rights of the people. The opposition say there is nothing in the way — this is admitting that there was nothing in the legislation — that it meant nothing. I have said, and I says again, that it was all a sham. It was my impression at the time that no company would be formed, but I was mistaken; a company has been formed; still I freely state that I don’t believe they will ever do anything — that they will ever turn the first sod. They have raised funds, however, and their President has gone home. It is true we could repeal the act, but we would not do so whilst there was a semblance of infringement of rights guaranteed to any one by the Act. I am responsible for what I said on the hustings, and prepared to stand by it. The state of the finances has nothing to do with this question. Railroads in their construction do not take money from the revenues. Is it raised by loan and if it entailed the levying of further taxes, they would be cheerfully paid in Saint John.
But we have a strong belief that it will entail no burden on the country at all. If the city take the Stock of $400,000 they agreed to, taxes there will be increased about one third. I should have to pay about $12 more than I now pay, and some would have to pay $500 more. I say this to show the strong faith the people have in the feasibility and paying qualities of the road. Works of this kind ought to be carried on by the Government. I find the objections raised to this work more contradictory than the speech. Some want the work to go on, others don’t want it at all, while member of the late Government want it to go on, and yet not to go on. I think the section ought to pass.
Mr. Gilbert. — I did not rise to defend the late Government at all. I rose thinking this Government did not require to take so long to define their policy. I was born in this country. I may say this great country, with capabilities to maintain a large population, who could put out all their energies and yet not exhaust its resources. I thought that it was not necessary the Government should take long to shew the policy they intended to follow. I thought the men who composed that Government, possessed as they are of great minds and large abilities, could go on with the great public works, and define their position even thought they had not been in existence twenty-four hours. I rose, not to oppose the Government, but as the representatives of a large and influential constituency — not to defend the late Government, for I was opposed to its do-nothing policy. But wishing to warn the new Government that “something ought to be done,” that the sound of the pick and the hammer might be heard in the land; that great works might be carried […]
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[…] on, and that connection with Nova Scotia should be commenced and pushed through to completion.
Not knowing what hindrances were in the way, was I to stop? I thought they had had time enough to deliberate on what was wanted by a small country like this, with a population of less than 300,000. I told them I intended to support them if they brought in measures I could approve. I came here perfectly free and independent, I came here not as a partizan of any set of men. I came here pledged against Confederation, no farther am I pledged, and I propounded the same ideas to my constituents on the hustings as I did here. After the statement made by the President of the Council, that obstacles stood in the way of carrying on the work of the main line, I learned that there had been a distinct offer made to carry on the work to completion. I do not intend to oppose the Government, but am I to be catechized because, when the speech was going by without discussions, and the mover of the address gave no statement of the policy of the Government, I rose to express my opinions on public works.
Hon. Mr. Smith — I do not quite understand the object of the hon. member’s lashing himself into such an immense fury. The hon. member is not bound so far as I know, certainly not to me, for I was not in the Government at the time of the elections. He is only pledged on the question of Confederation. I do not complain of the course pursued by my hon. colleague. I only expressed my disappointment and surprise at the course which he saw proper to pursue, a course that must surprise our constituents as much as it did me. The Government had not been in existence twenty-four hours, when the hon. member stood up and said that the indications were bad, and complained that we had not brought in any great scheme for the colonization of the country. As I said, he is not responsible to me, but to his constituents. It has gone forth to the country that he is in the Opposition, still I don’t complain of his action, but I tell him as I would any other hon. member that I was surprised and disappointed at the course he saw fit to pursue.
And now it is said that no difficulties really exist to prevent the carrying out of this railway work, I put it to the late Surveyor General, if Mr. Parks did not go to England under pledges of the late Government. And under these circumstances, we should be recreant to every principle of justice, if we proceeded with the work. I ask the hon. member, if he were a member of a Government, whether he would not feel bound by such action. He is please that the Government do not intend to carry on the work, yet his late leader was willing to guarantee the balance of the cost of Western Extension. Mr. Tilley is by all acknowledged to be a cautious man, and would not make such a pledge unless he intended to carry it out. The hon. member cannot deny this — his mouth is shut on this point. I want to put it to this House whether they are willing the Government should act in violation of the good faith of the late Government, and that the pledges made by them should be broken, in order to carry this work at once.
Mr. McClellan. — Do I understand that the Government would go on with the work if no legislation stood in the way?
Hon. Mr. Smith. — Yes.
Mr. Connell. — In case the company surrender their charter has the Government any right to go on with the work?
Hon. Mr. Smith. — It is not usual to ask questions of this kind until the address has passes, and I shall certainly decline to answer.
Mr. Connell. — But this may have a material bearing on the vote of the House.
Mr. McMillan. — In reply to the question of the President of the Council I would say, that if the late Government had not been prepared to meet the legislature on the question they would not have met them, but if the had intended to carry on a certain work they would have foreshadowed it in the Speech. I would direct the attention of Hon. Mr. Anglin to the promise of the late Provincial Secretary which he states was to provide for the building of the road Westward if sufficient Stock was not taken up to complete the work.
Hon. Mr. Anglin. — What I said was that the Facility Bill provided a grant of $10,000 a mile & there was a large amount of Stock subscribed, the city had agreed to take $40,000 worth of Stock and then Mr. Tilley promised to provide all the rest at six per cent.
Mr. McMillan. — What I understood by the statement of Mr. Tilley was this, that as a member of the Government he would take the responsibility of guaranteeing the balance over a million dollars, taking security on the whole of the road.
Mr. Wetmore. — Being a new member and rather green, I may be pardoned if I state my opinion on this matter. I apprehend that if the Government want to pass an Act for the prosecution of the work, they will apply to the House to do so after existing legislation can be surmounted. I understand Government intend to carry on Western Extension and therefore I shall support the passage of this paragraph. I think there are independent men enough in the country to look after public works, and carry them on with economy, and that they could get more out of it than any individual company could do. But of course if influences are brought to bear upon them, and they begin to give two prices to one contractor, and three to another, the public money will be wasted. I do not expect anything of this kind from the present Government, for from the high standing they hold — although there is rather too much conservative element in it — I judge in their hands the finances are safe.
Mr. Lindsay. — I am disappointed in reading the Speech that the Government are not going on with the work. The President of the Council says he is not responsible for the statements that go forth, and other members of the Government say they are not responsible.
Hon. Mr. Anglin. — I said that I was responsible.
Mr. Lindsay. — Yes and the hon. member said more than that. He said also that he was not a member of the Government when he made certain statements, and consequently is not responsible as such. Mr. Tilley said that he would guarantee, after all the Stock of the Company was paid up, and the whole sums received, to build the balance of the road, taking the road as security. Now — (A member “Don’t go into that.”) Very well, other members have talked aside from the question ; however, I wish to say a word or two. An honorable member this morning referred to a remark of mine which he got second hand. He said I had made a remark on Saturday that “he would explode”. I did not say so and I think , after the effort of this morning there is no danger of his exploding to night.
He further referred to remarks made to Mr. Goodspeed. I said that the statement he put forth that every man, woman, and child would be taxed $8 a head was not true. It appears to me that honorable members have been wandering back in their Speeches to other paragraphs. The members of the present government used to cry to the late Government, bring down your measures ; now they find fault because of the expressions used on the absence of — line of policy they intend to pursue.
Mr. McMillan. — I would not like to take the position of the honorable member for Northumberland that his feelings were with the conservative element in the Government, nor would I like to take an opposite one, but I think that gentlemen in the Government should be thankful to Confederation, that by it they have arrived at positions they would not otherwise have had. Flushed with victory their exposition of Confederation is worth little. I believe that half the votes in the country are in its favour. I am opposed to the passage of the paragraphs in the address, as it seems to complain of certain things which have arisen under existing legislation — which they declare to be a sham and a delusion. I do not suppose that the Government after the surrender of any rights any company may have thought they held, would proceed to act under the Act of 1856, and proceed with the trunk and branches as they see fit.
It may be they have the power and ability to use the offices entrusted to them for the good of the country. I am willing to give them a fair and reasonable time to mature their plans. But we are not willing to allow them to increase the public expenditure without consulting the people. On a question so much discussed and talked about, the Government might readily be supposed to have arrived at a conclusion as to what course to pursue. I understood companies were organized and were prepared to go on, but I fear that the action of the Government will lend to upset what has been done. This paragraph does not contain a sufficiently explicit policy as to the ideas entertained by the Government on Railway affairs. I think the Amendment gives the Government sufficient power to do all they need to do.
Mr. Kerr. — I readily accord the view of the law as expounded by the hon. member for the City of Saint John. I think they are precluded as a Government from interfering with the rights of a Company that may have intended to enter upon this work. I think it is now proceeding as well as we could expect. We learn that it is intended to carry on the line to fill up the gap to the Nova Scotia boundary, and that the later Government accepted the offer made. As such be the case I think it premature to interfere with the efforts put forth to fill up this gap. I have not yet heard that the State of Maine have yet taken up the matter with that energy this is necessary to assure us that they will be at the boundary before we can be there. If they care not taking measures it would be premature for us to go forward with the portion of the work, till they are ready to meet us.
Mr. Wetmore.— I understand they are taking measures, and that a deputation will probably be here in a few days to lay their action before us.
Mr. Kerr.— Are they from the legislature or are they capitalists?
Mr. Wetmore. — They represent a Company.
Mr. Kerr.— Railways are usually built […]
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[…] and carried on by private capital. The Great Trunk and Great Western lines of Canada were constructed by British Capitalists who expected them to pay but were disappointed. When we look at Canada with its great traffic, and see that they are not able to pay the interest on their stock as preference claims, we ought to pause before we undertake further extension. We talk as though we had four times the population and resources we really possess. We look at the state of Nova Scotia and find that last year they paid $60,000 whilst we paid $90,360. We used to be told that we would never be known till we got a debt. It strikes me we must pretty well known on the other side by this time.
At the close of the year 1863 we had to pay Baring £15,000, to meet the balance of interest against us and yet they want to go on building the road. The report of the Commissioners state that 20,000 rails are required to replace those worn out at certain parts of the line. These cost about one shilling a-piece and it would take from £500 to £1000 to replace them on the track. The revenue received last year only amounted to about $20,000, not sufficient to pay one month’s interest due to Great Britain.
When I see all this I think it would be premature to undertake further works. We have had all Governments in power under the Railway policy, and the result has been the same. If we saved up our revenues till we were in a better condition, after having paid our debts we could go on with the public works. We are not like Nova Scotia with her mines and minerals; we have no gold fields; we do not go so deep into the shore fisheries, and yet they are able to keep their debt at a lower figure than we can. Take Prince Edward Island; they are going on faster than any other of the other Provinces. They export a vast amount of wealth to the United States, and pay their debt, or at least they are in a good position to be able to wipe it out at any time. It is said we must have railroads to keep our population. What is peopleing Australia, New Zealand, and California? Is it not emigration from other places?
Why, even in the State of Maine, a Mr. Goodall complains that something must be done. Agricultural interests must be improved, or the young men will all go out West. I saw it stated that lately there has been a perfect exodus from Canada. There have been many who have left Nova Scotia since the war first began. Look at Charlotte County in 1854, one of the most prosperous years the country ever saw; during that year young men kept going away. Why was it? The country was prosperous. The fact is that when they make up their minds to go, they will go, and no railways or anything else will prevent them. I would like to see the young men go back, like their fathers did, into the woods, and gain for themselves farms and independence. But young men of this day want to do something easier than that.
A man, as soon as he gets a few hundreds of dollars together, must be a merchant, so that in almost every village there are ten retail shops where one would do, and the men stand round the doors all day long with their hands in their pockets. It is said, let us have railroads to circulate money. But. this circulation does not last long. I would ask the hon. member for Westmorland, what benefit has Moncton received from the Railway? I do not want to see the money go out of the country in the shape of interest as in the past. I think the offer of $10,000 a mile a most liberal one, and that it will be taken up, and the work done. If the people of St. John are in earnest and want this line so much, why don’t they put their hands in their pockets and do a little more to raise the required Stock? In the construction of the present line the land damaged amounted to £40,000, while in Nova Scotia they did not amount to one-third that sum.
After the disappointment we have all felt at the reports of the Canadian Railways, it is too much to say that the Government can remedy the evils that exist, and that it is possible to find men, honest men, to fill all the offices of the country. I think men are about as they were, and when money is placed in their way they like to get hold of it. To go on with our road will add £16,950 more to our interest, whilst the whole interest on our debt will amount to £158,160, and this to be paid by 250,000 people. When I look at the state of Railway stock in Canada, I find that on the Great Western there is a loss of £12 on every paid up share of £18. Look at the state of our stocks. I see they are quoted at from 92 to 95, and money worth 4 and 4 1-2 per cent. During the building of the road our debentures were worth 4 and 5 per cent premium now they are down to 92, and I don’t think there is much prospect for a rise. Who is going to invest $190,000 in carrying on our railway policy? If any one will, it will relieve our finances very much. I see by the Act of 1856 that the branches were to be carried on.
Hon. Mr. Smith — The provision was that they were to go on with the trunk or the branches as they could.
Mr. Kerr. — If they are going to deal fairly, the Government must serve all portions of the Province alike. Seeing all this, I cannot withdraw my amendment, and I am sure members of the Government, were they in my circumstances, would do the same. I think it best for the law to take its course, and leave the work for companies to take up. It may be that Mr. Parks will come out and surrender his charter forthwith. Then the Government are going to take the matter in hand; but I would like to know where they are going to get the money, and if they intend to raise it on the same terms as in 1857, I think they will find great difficulty, as our bonds have settled down and will not likely rise again for some time to come.
Mr. Hill.— The hon. member for Northumberland asked if the State of Maine were doing anything towards building the road on their side of the line. The assistance given to the company, of which Mr. Poor is the President, is one million of acres of land, subject to a claim of Massachusetts of $250,000. This claim, it is expected, will be given up to the company, as the effect of building the road will be to pour a stream of trade and travel into Boston equal to the amount. The feeling in Boston is growing very favorable to this plan. They also receive a large unsettled claim, and $100,000 was expected to be appropriated by the last Congress, but was not got through. In addition to this, the city of Bangor take stock in the company to the extent of $500,000, on the condition that the line run from Bangor to Mattawamkeag Point. Their object in pushing the line so far up is to carry the trade of Aroostook and the upper country to Bangor instead of Saint. John.
The House will see that the European and North American Railway Company have a strong team to work with, and it is generally supposed they will experience no difficulty in carrying on the work. The Government there do not build, as they have no revenue derived for that purpose. If anything were given it would have to be raised by direct taxation.
Mr. Kerr.—I would be just as free to give them lands as the State of Maine, and as to unsettled claims there are an indefinite amount of them, that we could readily bestow upon any company desiring to build, but it appears the Government really have not given one dollar toward the prosecution of the work.
On the division of the House on the amendment — Yeas 10. Nays 29.
On the division of the House, on the fifth paragraph — Yeas 27. Nays 12.
Mr. Connell moved that the fifth paragraph be reconsidered, and the following substituted in its place: “We are pleased to learn that the completion and extension of the European and North American Railway, from the frontier of Nova Scotia to the boundary of the United States, will be undertaken. If existing laws preclude immediate action, we will consider any measure which may be proposed for their amendment, and which will provide for an early commencement of the work.”
On division of the House on reconsideration — Yeas 2, Nays 28.
Paragraphs 6,7 and 8, were read and passed.
On the reading of the 9th, Mr. Gilbert asked the Government if they intended to take steps for the reduction of salaries of public officers, and make other retrenchments.
Hon. Mr. Smith.— It is the intention of Government to exercise the strictest economy they can, without impairing the usefulness of public offices.
Paragraphs 10 and 11, were then read and passed.
Mr. Otty moved that the Address be engrossed, signed by the Speaker, and presented to the Governor by the whole House.
Mr. Otty further moved, that a Committee be appointed to wait on His Excellency to be informed when he will be pleased to receive them therewith.
Mr. Wilmot moved for leave to bring in a Bill to prepare an Act for the Incorporation of the Carleton and Saint John Ship Building and Trading Company. Also, presented a petition from G. Allen and others, praying for said Act of Incorporation.
Mr. Boyd presented a petition from the Ministers, Elders and Trustees of the Church of Scotland, praying that certain Bills before the House may pass.
Mr. Boyd moved for leave to bring in a Bill to provide for the payment of the expenses of Grand Jurors.
Mr. Needham moved for leave to bring in a Bill relating to the registry of Bills of Sale of personal chattels.
Hon. Mr. Allen moved the House into Committee on the Bill to revive and continue the Act to regulate the sale of Spirituous Liquors.
House in Committee—Mr. McClellan in the Chair.
Mr. Allen said, this was an Act to revive and continue an Act of 1854. That law expires to-day. Adopted.
The Speaker having taken the Chair, on motion, the Bill became law.
Adjourned till 9 a.m. to-morrow.