Province of Canada, Legislative Assembly, 8th Parl, 4th Sess (30 August 1865)
By: Province of Canada (Parliament), Morning Chronicle
Citation: “Provincial Parliament. Legislative Assembly. Wednesday, August 30th” [Quebec] Morning Chronicle (31 August 1865).
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Wednesday, August 30th.
The SPEAKER took the Chair at three o’clock.
After routine business—
NORTH WATERLOO ELECTION.
Mr. A. MORRIS, from the North Waterloo Election Committee, reported, as their final resolution, that the defence of the sitting member, Mr. Bowman, was good, and that the petition of the petitioners was frivolous and vexations.
ENCOURAGEMENT OF COLONIZATION (L.C.)
Mr. POULIOT asked whether it is the intention of the Government to introduce a measure calculated to promote, in a mere direct and effectual manner, the Colonization of the Lands of the Province, by its own inhabitants, with a view to arresting the Emigration to the United States, and by bringing back those who have already emigrated to that country.
Hon. Mr. CHAPAIS said that the Government would, as heretofore, do everything in their power to promote colonization and to prevent emigration to the United States, by means of affording every possible encouragement to the settlement of the lands of the Provinces.
RAILWAY POSTAL SUBSIDES
Mr. DUNKIN asked whether it is the intention of the Government to take any action, and if any, what, at this session, in reference to Bill (No. 16), instituted: “An Act respecting Railway Postal Subsidies, and amalgamation of Railway Companies, and otherwise in amendment of the Railways Act,” now for the third time under reference to the Railway Committee, or to the several subjected affected by the same, or to any thereof.
Hon. J. A. MACDONALD said that the Government had considered the matter carefully. There was a considerable portion of the Bill to which they would desire to see fully discussed in Committee. He (Mr. Macdonald) would arrange to have an early day fixed for the discussion of the matter.
LAKE SUPERIOR COPPER MINES.
Mr. F. JONES (North Leeds) moved for a Select Committee to obtain information as to the extent and resources of the Copper mines on the North side of Lake Superior and the best means of their development so as to make the mines the means of increasing the revenue and affording at the same time greater encouragement to the employment of capital for the development of the Copper mines; also to enquire into the sale of lands in the mining district up to this time, and generally as to all matters whatever relating to the Copper mines, with power to send for persons and papers, and to report thereon.
Hon. J. A. MACDONALD (who was indistinctly heard in the gallery) was understood to say that, at this period of the session, when the duration of the House might be counted by days, it would be altogether out of the question for a Committee to be expected to accomplish much. If the hon. gentleman would wait until the spring session, and then renew his motion, there would be no objection to its acceptance. The motion could produce no result now, owing to the lateness of the session.
Mr. F. JONES said he had no objection to withdraw his motion if it was the opinion of the House to let this matter stand; but, at the same time, there were persons here who could readily afford most valuable information.
Hon. J. A. MACDONALD said that if his hon. friend could produce these people their evidence might be made available this session. (Hear, hear.)
SURVEY OF CANOTO.
Mr F. JONES (North Leeds) moved that the entry in the Journals of this House of the 28th June, 1874 (p. 498), in relation to the Select Committee appointed to enquire into all matters connected with the survey of the Township of Canonto be read, and that the said report be referred to a Select Committee.
Hon. J. A MACDONALD pointed out the practice with regard to the framing of such motions— stating that the first portion was correct, but the reading of the Journals must be done first. Let him move that they be read on Monday next.
Mr. F. JONES proceeded to explain the reason why he had made these motion. His object, he said, was not a personal one. On the contrary, he acted through a sense of duty to the House, his constituents and the country. (Hear, hear, and cheers.) He had deferred making this motion till the Hon. Finance Minister had made his financial statement— hoping we might thereby ascertain the financial condition of the country. That hon. gentleman would make us believe that the country was in such a prosperous state that if it did not completely excuse the extravagance in the administration of the Departments, it might palliate it, and also the amount of incompetency that prevailed in those branches of the public service. (Opposition cheers.) In 1863, a Commission was appointed, for the purpose of enquiring into departmental management, as also the management of public affairs generally. Although the report, which was the result of their labor, contained some things he could not approve of, yet it afforded some very useful information. It was certain that great threats were thrown out by the party then in power as to the revelations which would be made respecting their political opponents in connexion with this commission of enquiry. The hon. member for Cornwall (Mr. J. S. Macdonald) said, at the time, that there would be shown to have been grave mismanagement of our public affairs, and the present Hon. Minister of Agriculture, who was President of the Council in the then Government, said that the revelations would be such as to drive for ever from public life hon. gentlemen who now sat beside him on the Treasury benches. It appeared, however, that political death had fallen upon both parties and that all that remained was to erect a monument to their memory. (Laughter.) He had another object, however, than to erect such a testimonial— his object being to show that great departmental mismanagement had taken place, and that the system of audit which had been adopted had not proved sufficient to stop the abuses. He (Mr. Jones) thought it was time there should be some reform adopted in financial management. Well, we had now a report of the Crown Lands Commissioner for 1864; and it shewed that, on the four leading colonization roads opened at such expense in Upper Canada, there had been only seven settlers in the year 1864. (Hear, hear.) These roads had cost more than half a million dollars, giving nearly one hundred thousand dollars’ expenditure for each settler. (Oh, oh, and laughter.) In Lower Canada, however, it happened to be somewhat better— there having been ten settlers for the five colonization roads there. (Renewed laughter) Yet we heard the Hon. Finance Minister state that the extensive settlement of the country, and the increase by emigration and population could not be be expected to entail additional expense. He had not mentioned how many young men born and reared in the country had left Canada to seek a home in the United States, driven out by extravagance and mismanagement in our public affairs.— The hon. member went on to comment on the alleged mismanagement in the Crown Lands Department, arguing that its tendency was to drive people from the country. There had been an enormous increase in the expense of civil government since 1853. For 1865 they were $460,00, or four times the amount of the former period. There had been also a double increase in the expenses of the Crown Lands Department, in 1864 as against 1854, although much more work was performed in the latter year than in the former; and this was almost entirely owing to the increase of the number of officials. Would it not be better for Government to reduce the outlay of the several departments than to put a little tax of one or two cents on notes. When the report, to which he had already referred, was made, he (Mr. Jones) had been honored with a notice in connexion with the survey of the Township of Canoto. That survey was said to have been an extravagant one. When the evidence of some of the Crown Lands officials came to light, he (Mr. Jones) knew it was false, and he determined to call for a Committee of Enquiry. He did not, however, blame all the gentlemen of the Commission. When the Committee was appointed he called up the two gentlemen who had given evidence before the Finance Commission, and had them examined, when they were forced to contradict every one of their previous statements. He (Mr. Jones) did not wish to assert that Mr. Russell was culpable. He did not wish to say he was deserving of censure like Mr. Thomas Devine. The former, Mr. Russell, had made a mistake, but afterwards explained that the had no knowledge of the matter at issue; but Mr. Devine’s evidence was a systematic falsehood from beginning to end. The latter had committed an error, and wished to screen himself by charging it upon him (Mr. Jones.) The Commission sitting with closed doors made a report which, however, did not avail against him (Mr. Jones) with his constituents— he having authentic documents, was enabled to prove that he was correct, and that the contrary evidence had no foundation. He availed himself of the present opportunity to show a system of inquiry in the public departments prevailed— he did not say that all the Crown Lands officials were incompetent, but he did not, hesitate to say as to Mr. Devine that he made a survey in Upper Canada and was entirely ignorant of the subject.
The Journals were read, and the hon. gentleman moved that the House do proceed to consider the report on Monday.— Carried.
CUSTOMS HOUSE OFFICERS AT MONTMAGNY, KAMOURASKA, &C.
Mr. POULIOT moved for an Address to His Excellency the Governor General for a statement of the number of Custom House Officers still employed in the districts of Montmagny, Kamouraska, Sagnuenay and Rimouski, shewing the amount of their salaries, the nature of their duties and the amount of customs duties collected by them.— Carried.
PETITION OF MRS. MURNET.
On the order of the day being called for a motion for a Select Committee to enquire into the matters represented in the petition of Mrs. Maria Murney—
In answer to Mr. CARTWRIGHT—
Hon. J. A. MACDONALD said the Government had come to no determination on the matter yet, but would consider it carefully during the recess, in order to arrive at a settlement. He therefore hoped the hon. member would withdraw his motion.
Mr. CARTWRIGHT consented to withdraw the motion.
EXPENSES OF MONTREAL JAIL.
Hon. Mr. DORION moved or an address to His Excellency the Governor General for a statement of the expenses of the Montreal Jail for each half-year since the 1st January, 1863, shewing specially the amount paid for attendance and medicines furnished to sick prisoners, and also the average number of prisoners confined during each half-year in the said jail, since the 1st January, 1865.— The hon. gentleman in making his motion proceeded to comment upon the expenses of the Montreal Jail, under the old as compared with the new management. For a long time, he said, the Prison Inspectors recommended the adoption of a new dietary, but it was rejected by the late jailer. The statements respecting this institution, up to July, 1863, showed that its expenditure was enormous; that it was one of the most expensive jails in the country, and that under the old diet, furnished at great cost, the prisoners were almost starved; and, consequently, when the bills for medicine and tea swelled to an enormous amount, it excited some surprise. In the 6 months expiring June, 1863, the amount charged for tea for the sick prisoners alone, amounted for $1800; the sum charged under the head of medicine comforts reached $2600.
Hon. Mr. BROWN— How many prisoners were in the jail, and how many sick?
Hon. Mr. DORION— About 350 in the jail, but the average number under medical treat was about 80. We found, when in the Government, that there was so much extravagance in the accounts of the institution, and, no satisfactory explanation being given of this enormous charge, it was necessary to remove the Jailer and the Sheriff also, for this among other reasons. A new Sheriff and a Jailer were appointed, and the dietary system so long recommended by the Prison Inspectors adopted; and, he was by the Prison Inspectors adopted; and, he was now informed that in one of the most extensive jails of this province, the cost of diet was only about 5 cents per head, per day. Now, he wished information that it might be seen whether the changes, introduced there could not be introduced elsewhere; and if it could be shown that the cost of the prison diet per head in the Montreal Jail had been reduced from 16c. to 6c., the information would prove serviceable. While in our French college in Lower Canada a person obtained board and education for £20 a year, in the St. Vincent de Paul Reformatory Prison the cost of the simple maintenance of the prisoners was £50 to £60 a head. He thought the cost of the support of patients in the Beauport and Upper Canada Asylums was about £35 per head.
Hon. J. A. MACDONALD— It is somewhat less in Upper Canada.
Hon. Mr. DORION— Perhaps so. But it appeared to him that £35 a head was far too much to pay for this purpose, and that in all those institutions a much more economical system might be introduced.
Hon. J. A. MACDONALD— I hope you include all the expenses of the institution.
Hon. Mr. BROWN— The whole medical staff and other expenses being included in that estimate, it would not leave much for the board of the patients. The simple maintenance ought not to cost more than £24 or £25 per head.
Hon. Mr. DORION condemned the assembling of lunatics in numbers of six or seven hundred, as at Beauport. Instead of crowding too man together, we should see that they were distributed among more buildings.
Hon. Mr. CARTIER— Is the hon. gentleman moving for a comparative statement of the expenses?
Hon. Mr. DORION— For a comparative statement of the expenditure for 1863, 1864, and 1865.
Hon. Mr. CARTIER said that in justice to the memory of the late Sheriff Boston, the hon. gentleman ought to move for the statements for 1860.
Hon. Mr. DORION said he had no objections. These accounts were rendered every 6 months.
Hon. Mr. CARTIER said that in justice to the memory of a most honest and able officer, no longer in the land of the living, the statement asked for should include the last couple of years of his life and supervision of the jail.
Hon. Mr. DORION had no objection, and would like to get the returns during this session, if possible.
Hon. Mr. CARTIER said that the Government would do all in its power to get the returns before the session closed. The hon. gentleman must have seen there could be no objection to a comparative return. Hon. gentlemen opposite ought to be aware that the Ministry were as anxious to introduce economy into the management of the Jails and Asylums as they ever were. The hon. gentleman stated that he wished for returns to compare the expenditure of the jail with that under the old, or contract system, and he went on to state that on account of the high prices charged by the Jailer for the articles furnished under his contracts, both he and the Sheriff had been dismissed. Well, it was because the hon. gentleman had thought proper to allude to this unfortunate act of his, that he (Mr. Cartier) would make some remarks on the subject. Those two gentlemen (Mr. Delisle and Mr. McGinn) were most unjustly dismissed. As to the prison expenditure of Montreal, all ought to understand that the Sheriff was the paymaster of the jail and the Treasurer for the Government as regards this institution. Besides, there were in the Quebec and Montreal Jails two medical officers whose duty it was to certify as to the necessity of every expenditure for sick prisoners, and medical matters generally. The Jailer, in the next place, was entrusted with the supervision of the jail. Well, a few years ago the Prison Inspectors recommended a new system diet and new style of clothing, for the prisoners, which the Sheriff objected to on the ground of the expense it would entail. The changes could not be adopted, no money having been voted therefor. The Sheriff had received no answer as to whether he should make any change, and the old state of things continued as before till the death of Sheriff Boston. Mr. Delisle was appointed his successor, and though dismissed by the hon. gentlemen opposite, he had been one of the best public officers that ever occupied a public situation. (Opposition ironical cheers.) He found a correspondence between his predecessor and the Government respecting a new system of diet, and asked for an answer or decision on the subject, but it never was forwarded, and the old system was allowed to continue. Well, fault was soon found with him, and with the Deputy-Clerk of the Crown and the Peace, the object of the then Government being to provide for other parties. An investigation into the conduct for Mr. Delisle, Mr. Brehaut and Mr. Schiller was held, the fault of the first-named being to permit a system to go on respecting which he received no instructions in answer to his communications. He (Mr. Cartier) did not mean to say there was any officer who deserved dismissal in connection with the jail contracts, or prices charged for food or medical comforts to the prisoners; but if there was any such, he certainly was Dr. Beaubien. (Hear, hear.) He it was who ordered medical comforts and medicines, and without his supervision the could not be administered. But what was done? Why, Dr. Beaubien was kept in office while Mr. Delisle and Mr. McGinn, the Jailer, were in no way responsible for the continuance of the old system. The graver the case made against the Sheriff and Jailer, the more incumbent wasn’t upon the member for Hochelaga to dismiss Dr. Beaubien also. (Hear, hear.) Mr. McGinn, the contractor, was a poor man who had the contract from the former Sheriff, and he had been simply discharging his duty as a contractor to to the jail. He might have received too large profits— which, from all he (Mr. Cartier) heard, was not the case; but, supposing it to have been so, he was acting in accordance with the existing system, which had been sanctioned by every Government from the time of Sir L. Lafontaine, in 1842. Consequently, the allusion of the member for Hochelaga to the dismissal of the Jailer was in taste as bad as the act was unjust. It was sufficient that the hon. member had inflicted immense injury and loss upon that poor and worthy man without recurring to it on this occasion. (Hear, hear.) The late Sheriff could withstand all those attacks, because he was in a more independent position, and all understood that he was dismissed from political necessity. The Sheriff had simply to pay the medical accounts as soon as they were certified by the physician. If there was anything wrong in these jail payments, the Auditor as well as the Doctor were to blame therefor equally with the others, if not more so, and the Auditor should also have been dismissed. But the reason Dr. Beaubien was not dismissed was that he had in the Executive Council a nephew who saved him from harm. (Hear, hear, and laughter.)
Hon. Mr. DORION proceeded to reply to the arguments and statements of the Hon. Atty. General East, contending that Dr. Beaubien had nothing to do with the jail charges any more than ordering the medical comforts for which these charges were made. He had declined to make any suggestion, or take any part in the levying of those charges, and could in no way be held responsible for them, and consequently could not reasonably have been dismissed. The hon. gentleman then went on to defend his conduct in dismissing Messrs. Delisle, Brehaut, Schiller and McGinn. If ever an officer deserved in his opinion to be dismissed, it was Mr. Delisle. For years his office was in such a state that no account were kept or rendered, and monies put into his clerk’s hands were kept for years without any account being given. The hon. gentleman repeated the other well-known charges against Mr. Schiller and Mr. McGinn— going into particulars respecting which the investigation into the management of the officer of the Peace was held.
Hon. Mr. CARTER replied, defending the conduct of these gentlemen, reiterating his assertion that nothing had been proven against them, and that the dismissal was not justifiable.
Finally the motion was carried.
SHIPWRECKS IN THE ST. LAWRENCE.
Hon. Mr. ALLEYN moved for an Address to His Excellency the Governor General for the report of the Commissioners named to investigate into the causes of the loss of vessels in the St. Lawrence last year.—Carried.
It being six o’clock, the Speaker left the Chair.
After the recess—
The SPEAKER took the Chair at ten minutes to eight o’clock.
BILLS FROM THE UPPER HOUSE.
A number of bills from the Legislative Council were advanced a stage.
Among these were the bills relative to the Jeffery Hale Hospital and the Jeffery Hale Sunday School— read a first time on motion of Hon. Mr. ALLEYN.
LAW OF MASTER AND SERVANT.
Mr. A WRIGHT (East York) moved that the House go into Committee on the bill to amend Chapter 75 of the Consolidated Statutes of Upper Canada, intuited “An Act respecting master and servant.”
The motion was carried and the House went into Committee— Mr. MORRIS in the Chair.
ABUSES PREJUDICIAL TO AGRICULTURE.
On motion of Mr. BELLEROSE, the House went into Committee on the bill to amend the act respecting abuses prejudicial to agriculture, Chap. 26 of the Consolidated Statutes for Lower Canada, and amendments— Col. BLANCHET in the Chair.
The Bill was reported from the Committee without amendment.
THE NOTARIAL PROFESSION.
On motion of Mr. ARCHAMBAULT, the House went into Committee on the bill to amend the act respecting the notarial profession, and amendments— Mr. DUFRESNE (Montcalm) in the Chair.
The Bill was reported from Committee without amendment.
AMENDMENT TO INSOLVENCY ACT OF 1864.
Hon. Mr. ABBOTT moved that the House go into Committee on the Bill to amend the Insolvency Act of 1864, and amendments.
In answer to Hon. Mr. DORION—
Hon. Mr. ABBOTT said that of course if his hon. friend insisted he would postpone this motion; but he thought the bill might be allowed to go through Committee now.
Hon. Mr. CARTIER was understood to argue that there was no occasion for deal, as the bill related to matters of form.
Hon. Mr. ABBOTT said that all the clauses in the bill with one exception related to forms of procedure. The exception had reference to Upper Canada.
After some further conversation—
Hon. Mr. ABBOTT consented to allow the bill to stand.
RATE OF INTEREST.
On motion that the House go into Committee on the Bill to amend the act respecting interest, and amendments.
Mr. DUNKIN explained the provisions of the bill as amended in Committee.
A lengthy discussion ensued.
Hon. Mr. CARTIER said it was much to be regretted that the bill introduced by the Government in 1858 had not become law, inasmuch as it would have prevented the question from being brought up in this way session after session. Persons engaged in commercial pursuits were those most calculated to judge correct of the true value of money, and he was therefore glad to hear the opinions expressed by an hon. colleague on the subject the other night. There should be a distinction made between the commercial and agriculture classes on this question of interest. He was read to allow commercial men, banks, &c., to exact any rate of interest they liked in commercial transactions for a term not over one year. We had, unfortunately, commenced by the wrong end here. We had commenced as if every body knew the rate of money. This was an error. He would approve of limiting the rate of interest in other than commercial transactions to six per cent.
Hon. J. S. MACDONALD moved that the House do not now go into Committee, but that it go into Committee on Monday next— then to be the first order of the day.
Mr. A. MACKENZIE— I suggest the first of March, 1866. (Laughter.)
Mr. DUNKIN urged the importance of the measure, and the necessity of having time to look at it and examine it. He suggested that the Government should consent to make it the first public order for Monday.
Mr. J. J. ROSS (Champlain) said that from the opposition and obstruction offered to this bill, one would think some hon. gentlemen had been sent here specially to protect usurers. He failed to see why there should be any postponement to Monday.
Mr. McKELLAR objected on the ground that the bill was not printed in French. (Roars of laughter) Well, the objection he thought was valid, and he did not see why the time of the House should be taken up with a discussion which was evidently out of order. (Hear, hear, and cries of “En Francais.”
Mr. A. MACKENZIE (Lambton)— “Ecoutez.” (Laughter.)
The objection was held good and the discussion dropped.
WEIGHTS AND MEASURES.
Mr. BOURASSA moved that the House go into Committee on the bill to amend chapter 53 of the Con. Stat. of Canada, respecting weights and measures, reported.
Hon. Mr. CARTIER— What changes have been made in the bill?
Hon. Mr. HOLTON— No changes.
Mr. BOURASSA— The Bill has been sent back from the Committee on Banking and Commerce without amendment.
The motion was carried, and the House went into Committee.—Me. PERRAULT in the chair.
The Bill was reported from Committee without amendment.
COLLECTION OF SCHOOL RATES.
On motion of the Hon. Mr. LAFRAMBOISE, the House went into Committee on the Act 27 Vic., cap. 11, respecting the collection of school rates and amendments.— Mr. J. B. E. DORION in the chair.
The Bill was reported from the Committee without amendment.
ASSURANCE ON LIVES OF HUSBANDS.
On motion of Mr. MUNRO, the House went into Committee on the Bill to secure to wives the benefit of assurance on the lives of their husbands.— Mr. MORRIS in the chair.
A very long discussion ensued in Committee, and several amendments were made.
The bill was reported from Committee with amendments.
TAX ON DOGS.
Mr. WRIGHT (East York) moved the second reading of the bill to impose a tax on dogs and to provide for the better protection of sheep in Upper Canada.
AN HON. MEMBER— Send it to the Barking Committee. (Laughter.)
The motion was carried and the bill as referred to Committee.
MUNICIPALITIES HOLDING STOCK.
On motion of Mr. WILSON, the bill to amend the law in relation to municipalities holding stock in joint-stock companies was read a second time and referred to a Select Committee.
ADULTERATION OF LIQUORS.
Mr. BOURASSA moved the second reading of his bill to provide for the inspection of spirituous and alcoholic liquor. (Hear, hear.)
Hon. J. A. MACDONALD pointed out that the bill was one which related to the excise law of the country and affected the revenue, so that it could not originate in the shape in which the hon. member proposed to introduce it.
Mr. BOURASSA withdrew his motion.
DRAFTING FOR THE MILITIA.
Mr. GAGNON moved the second reading of the bill to amend the militia law of 1863 with respect to drafting.
Hon. Mr. CARTIER said that the whole subject of the militia was under the consideration of the Government, with a view to whatever changes in the system might be found necessary. He therefore begged the hon. member would withdraw his motion.
Mr. GAGNON consente.
COMMON LAW PROCEDURE (U.C.)
On motion of Hon. Mr. CAMERON, the bill to amend the Common Law Procedure Act of Upper Canada was read a second time and referred to Committee.
CROWN DEBTORS (U.C.)
On motion of Hon. Mr. CAMERON, the bill to amend the law relating to Crown Debtors in Upper Canada was read a second time and referred to Committee.
RAW HIDES AND LEATHER.
On motion of Mr. SOMERVILLE, the bill to amend the law relative to the inspection of leather and hides was read a second time and referred to Committee.
CHURCH OF ENGLAND RECTORY LANDS.
Mr. STREET moved the second reading of the bill to enable the Church Societies and Incorporated Synods of the Church of England Dioceses in Canada to sell the Rectoral Lands in the said Dioceses— from Legislative Council.
Hon. Mr. BROWN raised the question of order, on the ground that the bill as a private bill although it had been introduced as a public bill.
The SPEAKER sustained the objection.
Mr. STREET said he regretted exceedingly that it should be so, but of course he had to submit to the Speaker’s decision.
The matter then dropped.
UPPER CANADA COMMON LAW PROCEDURE.
On motion of Mr. T.C. WALLBRIDGE (in the absence of Mr. M. C. CAMERON) the bill to amend the Common Procedure Act of Upper Canada was read a second time and referred to Committee.
SALES OF LAND (U.C.)
Mr. STREET (in the absence of Mr. J. S. SMITH) moved the second reading of the Bill to declare valid certain sales of land in Upper Canada.
After a lengthy discussion of an explanatory nature, the motion was carried, and the Bills as referred to a Special Committee.
On motion of Mr. MAGILL, the Bill to amend the Municipal Institutions Act of Upper Canada, in respect of transient traders, was read a second time and referred to the Committee on the Municipal and amendment Law of Upper Canada.
On motion of Mr. MAGILL, the Bill to authorise the formation of companies or co-operative associations for the purpose of carrying on in common any trade or business, was read a second time and referred to the Committee on Banking and Commerce.
JOINT STOCK, MANUFACTURING AND OTHER COMPANIES.
On motion of Mr. WALSH, the Bill to amend chapter 63 of the Consolidated Statues of Canada, respecting Joint Stock Manufacturing and other companies, was read a second time and referred to the Committee on Banking and Commerce.
On motion of Mr. BELLEROSE, the bill to facilitate prosecutions under the act respecting tavern-keepers and the sale of intoxicating liquors, was read a second time and referred to a Special Committee.
AMENDMENT OF CHAP. 10 CON. STAT. I.. C.
Mr. SHANLY moved the second reading of the bill to amend chapter 10 of the Con. Stat. Canada, respecting seditious and unlawful associations and paths. The hon. mover, in introducing the measure, said that his object simply was so to amend the law of Lower Canada respecting secret societies as to permit the Masonic body in this section of the Province to work under their own rules, as was done by the Upper Canada Masons, independent of the Grand Lodge of England.
Mr. A. MACKENZIE (Lambton)— This is a secret society, and I hope, therefore, that the Hon. Minister of Agriculture will enlighten us on the subject. (Laughter.)
Mr. SHANLY— The object of the bill is merely to permit the Lower Canadian Freemasons to work under their own regulations in the same manner as their brethren of Upper Canada. It granted no new privileges whatever. (Hear, hear.) It is only to allow them to work—
Mr. T. C. WALLBRIDGE— In the dark (Laughter.)
Hon. Mr. McGEE— Is the honourable member for Lambton (Mr. Mackenzie) aware that this is a secret society? (Hear, hear.)
AN HON. MEMBER— Perhaps the hon. Minister of Agriculture has been made a Mason.
ANOTHER HON. MEMBER— Oh, no! (Renewed merriment.)
Hon. J. A. MACDONALD— I think it was to the Orange Association that my hon. friend had an objection.
Hon. Mr. McGEE— I admit a slight repugnance to that brotherhood. (Continued laughter.)
Mr. IRVINE explained that the law of Lower Canada was very severe in relation to all secret societies, with the exception of Masonic associations acting under the authority of the Grand Lodge of England. The object of the bill was to allow the Masons of Lower Canada to act under the authority of the Grand Lodge of Canada.
Hon. Mr. CARTIER wished the bill, if it passed, to pass on a division. He did not know anything about Masons or Freemasons. He did not know whether he could be admitted a member of that body. (Laughter.)
Mr. DUNKIN— If the hon. member will only pay as much as he did for the Ottawa buildings he can be made a Mason as often as he chooses. (Laughter.)
Hon. J. A. MACDONALD— The fact is, the purport of this bill is to make Walter Shanly, Esquire, Grand Master, instead of the Earl of Zetland. (Renewed Laughter.)
The bill was a read a second time, on a division, and referred to Committee.
The House then, at midnight, adjourned.