Province of Canada, Legislative Assembly, Scrapbook Debates, 8th Parl, 5th Sess, (21 June 1866)
By: Province of Canada (Parliament)
Citation: Province of Canada, Parliament, Scrapbook Debates, 8th Parl, 5th Sess, 1866 at 20-21.
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Thursday, June 21st
The speaker took the chair at 3 o’clock.
The following bills were introduced and read a first time.
Hon. Mr. Rose – To incorporate the Canadian Rubber Company, of Montreal
Mr. J. O. Smith – To incorporate the Globe Printing Company
Mr. Taschereau – To amend the Act 29, Vic. Chap. 27, respecting the incorporating of the city of Quebec.
Hon. Mr. Rose – To legalize a certain agreement between the Buffalo and Lake Huron Company, and the Grand Trunk Railway Company.
Dr. Brown – To prevent certain nuisances arising form factories.
Mr. Knight – To incorporate the Waterloo and Magog Railway Company.
Mr. Bellerose – To amend the Act relating to abuses prejudicial to agriculture.
Mr. Bowman – To incorporate the College of St. Jerome, at berlin.
Mr. MaGill – To incorporate the Great Western Oil Company
Mr. Pouliot – To amend the Fisheries Act
Hon. Mr. McGee – To incorporate the St. Patrick’s Hall Association, of Montreal.
Mr. Powell – To confirm the settlement made by Charlotte Anderson, of certain lands in Ottawa City.
Mr. Wallbridge – To encourage the planting of trees on the Highways of this province.
Hon. Mr. Cauchon – To amend the consolidated Act incorporating the City of Quebec.
Mr. Dickson – To divide the Townships of Wawonash into two separate Municipalities.
Hon. J. H. Cameron – To incorporate the will of the late Robert Jackson, of the township of Scarboro
Mr. Irvine – To amend the Act incorporating the Quebec Marine Insurance Company.
Hon. Mr. Carling – To incorporate the Bothwell iron Bond and Bridge Company
Hon. Mr. Cameron moved that on Monday next the House resolve itself into Committee of the Whole, to consider certain resolutions with reference to exempting the business of the Canada Vine Growers’ Association, for a certain number of years, from taxation – Carried
Mr. McGivern moved an address for copies of all reports, orders and correspondence, between the military authorities and the militia or any other department, in reference to recent military movements on the Niagara frontier – Carried
Hon. Mr. Cartier wished for a postponement of this matter, as the Minister of Militia was absent.
Mr. McGivern said that all he wanted was to show the public they had done injustice to Col. Peacock, Col. Booker and others. Mistakes had occurred undoubtedly, but he knew positively, and of his own knowledge, that the gallant men who met the foe of the Niagara, had shown both courage and patriotism (Applause).
Hon. Mr. Brown deprecated the discussion of the subject. For his own part he held the conviction that both branches of the service had valiantly and patriotically discharged their duty to their queen and country. He also deprecated anything that would look like criticism by Parliament, of the conduct of the military, there should be praise not blame. (Applause)
Mr. Magill rose to second the resolution. He said, that notwithstanding that the Hon. Member for South Oxford deprecated all discussion upon this subject, he the speaker, considered that there was no subject that occupied so large a share of the attention of the people of the country, as the late invasion of the Niagara frontier and the county of Mississquoi. And while the Hon. gentleman deprecated that course, on the part of their hon… [Text cut off] himself was concerned. It was of importance that the various incidents connected with the late invasion should not only be brought prominently before the house, but also before the people of the country conscious that in doing so, this, the result, will not only prove satisfactory but highly creditable to the Militia and Volunteers of the country. There is no fact to be gleaned from the late occurrences, that in all future wars or raids made upon our territory, the Niagara frontier will form their chief base for the operations of the invading force.
Our great inducement for this policy on the part of the enemy, will be the wealth of section of the country to which that frontier is the avenue, affording as it does ample supplies in provisions for every description, and valuable property always of an inviting character to an invading army.
Another reason is, the historical recollections connected with that section of country, associated as it is the battles of Lundy’s lane and Queenston Heights, which pleases the enemy received a crushing defeat, and at Stony Creek, within seven miles of Hamilton, when the entire American forces was captured under General Chambers. There is not the least doubt Mr. Speaker, but that the enemy in all future contests will use his best efforts to efface the glorious victories at that time gained principally by the gallantry and heroism of the Canadian Militia in that section of the country.
The enemy will also know that if they can succeed in gaining a solid footing in that district of the country occupied as it is by the descendants of the brave men to whom I have before alluded, their future course and conquests of other parts would be comparatively an easy task. The Government and military authorities of the country and of the Empire should hear this fact in mind, in all their future arrangements in providing for our defences, and not leave the Western Peninsula in an exposed condition and give it up as untenable, as has been hinted at in previous reports on our defences.
A strong force of troops should always be maintained there and fortifications erected, making Hamilton, the most important city east of Lake Ontario the head-quarters from which point there is such admirable facilities for the transport and provisioning of any numbers of troops and the city itself capable of being so fortified as to arrest the progress of an invading army no matter how formidable. Other parts of the country might remain in possession of the enemy any length of time, without doing them much good, or as much harm, but having possession of the country at the head of Lake Ontario the enemy could inflict damages of most incalculable nature.
It should not be ignored by the members of this House, and we should all be alive by the threatening aspect of affairs on the continent of Europe which may at any time involve the Empire of which we form a part in a contest for the preservation of our rights and liberties, and besides there are circumstances which might, and which according to the natural course of events cause the Militia and Volunteers of this country to play an important part in the scenes to be enacted.
And therefore it is, Mr. Speaker, that I viewed with great regret the many sneering remarks which have bene indulged in with reference to the recent raids upon the frontier, and the part taken by our volunteers in connection therewith. I have had, Mr. Speaker some personal knowledge of the facts to which I now allude; for when the alarm was sounded, that a ruthless rabble had dared to pollute our soil with their presence, the men of the 13th Battalion rushed to arms and hurried with daring intrepidity to meet the invader. And an eye witness has stated that no troops of Her Majesty’s regular army ever proceeded with more steadiness and less regardless of dear. And the Rev. Mr. Inglis has stated that the only order which the men obeyed with alacrity, was the order to advance, and that when the retreat was sounded, tears of regret rolled down their sorrowful cheeks. General Sweeney boasted that if he ounce obtained a foothold upon Canadian soil he never could be driven off, but forty-eight hours sufficed him for the occupancy of a portion of our country; and this act was effected by the gallantry of our volunteers, unaided by Her Majesty’s regular troops.
And sir, when it is considered that our brave volunteers were rushed into the scene of conflict, hardly provisioned as well as badly ammunitioned, and still to act under so many adverse circumstances, with so much heroism and gallantry, there are not only deserving of the thanks of this House, but of the unanimous approval of the people of this country. I have, therefore, been anxious that a thorough ventilation of this subject should take place, and all that need of praise be [sic] to our volunteers, which their actions so well merit. I have been pleased to observe Mr. Speaker, that the citizens of Hamilton, which I have the honor of representing, have not been slow to acknowledge their gratitude to the 13th Battalion of […]
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[…] Volunteers, for upon the occasion of their returning to their homes in that city, only the day before yesterday, they were received with such rejoicings and festivities as will not soon be forgotten by the recipients, and sure I am that should the occasion again arrive when the services of our brave volunteers would be required by their country, they will be as ready as upon the recent occasion to rally at the first call to arms, and prove themselves worthy of their noble ancestry. I have much pleasure in seconding the resolution of the Hon. Member for Lincoln, to whose vigor and willingness to render all the services in his power during the late excitement, I can bear ample testimony. (Cheers.)
The resolution was carried.
Hon. Mr. Laframboise moved an address for copies of documents received from justice Coursol in answer to the report of F.M. Torrence, Esq.
Hon. Mr. Cartier suggested that the motion should include all correspondence since adopted.
Hon. J.A. Macdonald moved an address for sundry statements relating to the camp of instruction at Lapairie in 1865.—Carried.
Mr. McKellar moved an address for a statement with plans and descriptions of lands (if any) leased, sold, or agreed to be leased or sold to Hudson Bay Company, or their agents, on the North shore of Lakes Huron and Superior, with copies of all correspondence orders in council (if any) had with the company or their agents regarding such lands.
Hon. Mr. McDougall said that the Government could have no objection to supply the information sought for; but he would be sorry that it should be thought that the Government was desirous of upholding any such system as that condemned by the hon. member for Kent.
Hon. Mr. Brown said he had understood that the patents alluded to had been cancelled and that no such monopoly would be permitted. He also understood that no further action should be taken without the whole subject being submitted to the House.
Hon. Mr. McDougall contended that the transactions had not been completed.
Mr. McKenzie said that the hon. gentleman was in error as he believed the patents had been prepared, and settlers had been refused location because of the patented rights of the Hudson’s Bay Company.
Hon. J.H. Cameron conceived it would be more in order to discuss this question when the papers were laid before the House.
In answer to the question of Hon. Mr. Dorion as to vacancies in the offices of Collector of Customs Montreal, the Chief Justice of the Superior Court of Lower Canada and Sheriu [sic] the District of Quebec, Hon. Mr. Cartier said that Hon. Mr. Galt was engaged on important matters, and wished for a postponment [sic].
The following bills were read a second time:
To amend the law of crown and criminal procedure and evidence at trial—Hon. Mr. Cameron.
To amend the act respecting attorneys-at-law—Hon. Mr. Cameron.
To enable the Law Society of Upper Canada to call Hewitt Bernard to the Bar of Upper Canada—Attorney-General Macdonald.
On motion of Mr. Somerville, the House went into Committee of the whole, and adopted certain resolutions respecting the inspection of leather and raw hides.
The House adjourned at five o’clock P.M.