Province of Canada, Legislative Council, 8th Parl, 4th Sess (29 August 1865)
By: Province of Canada (Parliament), The Quebec Daily Mercury
Citation: “Provincial “Parliament. Legislative Council. The Quebec Daily Mercury (30 August 1865).
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(Reported for the Mercury.)
TUESDAY, 29th Aug. 1865.
The SPEAKER took the Chair at three o’clock.
The following private bills, reported from Committee without amendments, were read a third time and passed:—
To incorporate Jeffery Hale’s Hopsital.
To incorporate Jeffery Hale’s Sunday School.
To amend the Law of Lower Canada respecting Education.
And the following with amendments, after concurrence of the House in the said amendments moved and carried:—
To grant certain additional powers to the Canada West Farmer’s Mutual and Stick Insurance Company.
Certain amendments made by the Private Bills Committee, in the Bill for the sale or other disposition of the lands of the late John Loin McDougall, were adopted, and—
On motion of Hon. Mr. MACPHERSON, the Bill was ordered for a third reading to-morrow.
TREES ON HIGHWAYS.
Hon. Mr. FLINT, from Select Committee, reported a number of amendments to the Bill to encourage the planting of fruit, […] and ornamental trees on the public public highways of the Provinces. The hon. gentleman explained that the amendments were substantially similar to those made in the Bill last Session, and moved their adoption.
Hon. Mr. A. J. DUCHESNAY begged to reiterate the objections he had already taken to this Bill, which he hoped would not be allowed to pass, or if it passed at all, would not be made to apply to Lower Canada. The planting of trees along the highways in the manner contemplated by the bill; would he believed, not only be undesirable, but dangerous, especially in Lower Canada. In winter, those tress would tend to produce accumulations of snow and block up the roads, while in summer, they would repent them from drying quickly after wet weather, besides rendering Tham doubly dark t night. We had a law which, in certain cases, required the clearing of wood from the road for a certain distance and it seemed to him that this measure was calculated to clash with it. He repeated the hoped that the bill would not be made to apply to Lower Canada
Hon. Sir. N. F. BELLEAU made some remarks in connection with the subject, which, however, owing to the low tone in which the hon. gentleman spoke, were inaudible to those on the gallery.
Hon. Mr. BUREAU said he totally differed in opinion with his hon. Friend (Mr. Duchesnay) as to the effects which the planting of trees would have on the roads. Instead of causing the snow to accumulate, he believed they would serve as a protection against accumulations. His own experience, at least, had always found such to be the case. The roads through the woods in winter were generally on that account in better condition than those in the open country. And in summer the shade of such trees in the heat of the weather was most refreshing and beneficial to travellers, so that in all respects he thought it desirable that the bill should be made applicable to Lower as well as Upper Canada.
Hon. Mr. BOSSÉ opposed the Bill, taking almost similar grounds of exception as Hon. Mr. Duchesnay, and urging the advisability of making the agreeable cede to the useful.
Hon. Mr. A. J. DUCHESNAY repeated that the bill would not answer for Lower Canada. He moved that the report be again referred to Committee to be amended so as not to apply to that section of the Province. The plantation of trees on highways would, in his opinion, cause the snow to accumulate, prevent the roads from drying, secession a great obscurity at night, and besides the ice (le […]) which at times forms itself on the branches of trees in Lower Canada might cause the branches to break and injure travellers. Now as we had a law requiring fences, to be put down in the winter to prevent the gathering of snow in the roads and what a singular legislation would it not be to allow trees to be planted there. He called the attention of the Lower Canadian members to the Bill.
The amendment was lost on a division of 5 to 17; and the main motion for the adoption of the report, being put was carried.
Those who voted for the amendment were Hon. Messrs. Alexander, Bossé, Currie, A. J. Duchesnay and Ross.
The Bill was then read a third time and passed.
Hon. Mr. SIMPSON brought in the third report of the Joint Committee on Printing Among other matters, the report alluded to the subject of the printing of the Confederation debates of last session the cost of which it set down at the sum of $14,490.65. It was ordered for consideration on Thursday next.
The SPEAKER communicated to the House a message from His Excellency the Governor General, informing the House that His Excellency had been pleased to grant leave to the Hon. J. G. Goodhue to be absent from his seat during the present session.
THE CATLE PLAGUE.
Hon. Mr. CHRISTIE presented the second report of the Committee on Agriculture. The report called attention to the very alarming and destructive contagious disease now prevailing among cattle in Europe, and suggested, in view of the danger of the infection being communicated to the stock in this country, the propriety of the government being authorized by law to prohibit for a time being authorized by law to prohibit for a time the importation of cattle from the sea-board, and to take other necessary measures to prevent the introduction of this alarming plague.
The report having been read at length at the table by the Clerk—
Hon. Mr. CHRISTIE said the alarming nature of this cattle plague, the rapidly with which it was spreading in European countries, and the unusual virulence of its character were such as to call for our most serious consideration, in view of the probability of the infection being introduced into Canada. The last news from Great Britain, where the contagion, it was believed, had been brought by the importation of tainted cattle from Russia, spoke in the most alarming tines of the progress of the disease and the wholesale destruction of stock which followed its pestiferous breath. In and about London, whole dairies had been decimated, and the loss in other parts of England was equally large. Meetings had been held on the subject and stringent orders had been passed by the Privy Council in regards to it, with the view of endeavouring to avert the evil. The papers were full of accounts of meetings in the agricultural districts and elsewhere on the subject, and of the progress of the plague and the destruction which it cause. [The hon. gentleman here quoted from several leading English agricultural journals, shewing the fearful ravages of the contagion.] Professor Ferguson, Her Majesty’s Veterinary Surgeon in Ireland, which part of the United Kingdom the disease had not yet reached, had addressed a letter is the Irish Executive, arguing the adoptee of the most stringent measures to precent its introduction and recommending that the importation of cattle from the seaboard should be totally prohibited in preference to a system of quarantine. This view had been taken and supported by other eminent scientific men, as it appeared that the disease had been introduced by […] stock into England. The hon. gentleman proceeded to read a number of extracts from papers, all tending to establish that the introduction of the contagion had been owing to the importation of foreign cattle, and in particular cattle from Russia, and went on to say that we should have here a total prohibition for a time against the importation of cattle from the seaboard, if we desired to prevent this alarming plague from exercising its malignant influence in our midst. As for our frontier, he hoped that its introduction in that way would be effectually burred by the adoption of the necessary steps on the part of the American Government for guarding of its own territory. Whatever measures we were to take, he hoped they would be taken promptly, as before long numbers of vessels from Great Britain and the Continent might be expected to arrive at this port. He had prepared a Bill for the purpose, which was a transcript of the Imperial Act, but he had since considered it would be better to leave the matter in the hands of the Government, satisfied that they would fully appreciate the necessity of taking preventative measures against the communication of this serious plague to Canada. He would therefore move that the report of the Committee be referred to the Executive Council.
After some conversation, the hon. gentleman withdrew his motion of reference, and moved the adoption of the report.
Hon. Mr. ROSS said he fully concurred with the hon. mover in the great importance for us of the subject which the report had brought under the notice of the House, and though he quite agreed with that hon. gentleman, than whom in such matters no one was a better authority, as to the necessity of taking prompt preventative measures against the introduction of the disease, he (mr. Ross) did not think in regard to prohibition that we were in the same relation as the European countries were to one another. In the first place, the distance which separated us was too great; and again, it was not likely that diseased animals would be shipped, and even if such were shipped, it was not likely they would last out the voyage across the Atlantic. He found by the Irish papers that the Executive had adopted the prohibition as regarded foreign countries, but not as regarded the rest of the United Kingdom.
Hon. Mr. CHRISTIE remarked that there were instances of cattle disease, not so virulent as the present one, even having been brought across the Atlantic before.
Hon. Mr. ROSS admitted that such was the case, and went on to add something further, which our reporters were prevented from hearing, owing to the noise cause at the time by persons passing the reposing the gallery to the Speaker’s Gallery of the Assembly.
When the noise had ceased—
Hon. Mr. CHRISTIE was saying that he thought the hon. gentleman (Mr. Ross) was in error in believing that the contagion would lose its virulence in an ordinary voyage across the Atlantic. He then concluded by saying that it was his intention to leave the matter in the hands of the Government.
Hon. Sir N. F. BELLEAU was understood to say that the Government had already taken cognizance of the existence and ravages of this plague, and were fully impressed with the necessity of preventing, if possible, its introduction into Canada. He thanked the hon. mover (Hon. Mr. Christie,) for the attention he had given to the matter, as well as for the able manner in which he had brought it under the notice of the House.
The motion for the adoption of the report was then put and carried, and the subject dropped.
Hon. Mr. FERGUSSON BLAIR—To amend the Act relating to Short Forms of Mortgages in Upper Canada.
Hon. Mr. FLINT—Respecting the Gaspé Bay Mining Company.
Hon. Sir N. F. BELLEAU moved that the period for receiving petitions for Private Bills be extended to the 10th September next.—Carried.
Bill to facilitate the separation of the County of Renfrew from the County of Lanark.
Bill to extend the time for the completion of the Brockville and Ottawa Railway—Hon. Mr. SHAW.
Bill to amend the Acts relating to the International Bridge Company—Hon. Mr. ROSS.
Bill relating to the boundary of Ely Township—Hon. Mr. SANBORN.
The House then adjourned at half-past four o’clock.