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The Scot in British North America
Chapter VII. The Dominion from 1867 to 1882. Part A


It must always prove a delicate task to essay a fair and impartial survey of recent events. Apart from the impossibility of viewing them in historical perspective, a writer can hardly avoid some of the pitfalls which beset his path. If contemporary history demands calm and unbiassed criticism of men and things—and all history must be more or less judicial in spirit—then it may be frankly admitted to be out of the question. Bias, conscious or unconscious, must inevitably control the judgment, since no man, with settled political convictions, can narrate the events of which he has been a witness with entire indifference. There is only one of two alternatives: either to give the narrative text without a commentary, or to endeavour to present both sides of every case before him as impartially as may be. By adopting the first plan, the history is apt to appear feeble and colourless; and to attempt the second, is to run the risk of over-stating or under-stating the arguments on one side or the other—perhaps on both. Fortunately, the present work mainly assumes a biographical form, therefore, it may be possible to introduce controverted matter from the stand-point of each particular subject taken up.

Already the account of past history given in a previous volume has been subjected to animadversion by a distinguished actor on the scene, whose public record covers a generation passed away. It is not, therefore, without some hesitation that the chronicler approaches the story of the last fifteen years; since, to satisfy all parties even in simple narration can hardly be within reasonable expectation.

It has already been seen that three of the British North American Provinces were formally united as the Dominion of Canada, upon a federal basis on the first of July, 1867. Prince Edward Island still held aloof, and the North-West Territories had not yet been acquired from the Hudson Bay Company. The Dominion Government or Privy Council, as constituted at the outset, still partook of the nature of a coalition at least in form. Messrs. Fergusson-Blair, Macdougall and Rowland represented the Reform element, as Messrs. Brown, Mowat, and Macdougall had done in the earlier coalition. Mr. Mowat had been elevated to the Bench in November, 1864, and Mr. Brown, in consequence of differences with his colleagues on the reciprocity question, had resigned; and, having been defeated by Mr. T. N. Gibbs at the general election, was, for the present, out of public life. The leadership of the Opposition, consequently, devolved upon Mr. Alexander Mackenzie, afterwards Premier of the Dominion. In 1868, Mr. Rowland became Lieutenant-Governor of Ontario, and in 1869 Mr. Macdougall was appointed to the same office in the North-West. Attempts were subsequently made to preserve the semblance of a coalition, by appointing gentlemen who were Reform Government; but party lines were soon drawn as before, and so the issue lay between a Ministry of Conservatives and a Reform Opposition.

For some years, the work of consolidating the Dominion chiefly occupied attention. The opponents of the Government reserved to themselves the duty of trenchant criticism; yet they neither endeavoured nor hoped, in the lull which had ensued, to effect much as a party organization. The struggle at the polls was yet to come, and meanwhile the exigencies of the new state of affairs fully occupied the attention of both sides, to the exclusion of pure1y partizan efforts. The first matter which engaged the consideration of Parliament was the pacification of Nova Scotia. It has been already stated that in 1868 Mr. Howe visited London, and endeavoured to secure the repeal of the British North America Act in so far as it concerned the Province of Nova Scotia. As might have been anticipated, the Imperial Government declined to accede to this request; but recommended some more favourable arrangement between the Dominion and the Province. The result was that Sir John Macdonald made overtures to the dominant party in the latter, which were accepted by Mr. Howe and a portion of his followers. The "better terms" consisted in the assumption of nine, instead of eight, millions of the Provincial debt, an increased subsidy, and the cost of the new Government buildings. Mr. Howe at once entered the Privy Council, first as President of the Council, and subsequently as Secretary for the Provinces, in January, 1869. The feeling in Nova Scotia, however, was still strong against the Union, and Mr. Howe only secured his re-election after a sharp contest and by an inconsiderable majority.

The next project of importance was the acquisition of the North-West territories. In 1868, Messrs. G. E. Cartier and Wm. Macdougall were sent to England to open negotiations on the subject, and in the following year a definitive arrangement was concluded with the Hudson Bay Company. As it will be necessary to enter more fully into the matter in a chapter on the North-West, a bare statement of results here will suffice. The necessary legislation was passed in April, 1869, and the formal transfer should have taken place on the first of December. Meanwhile the Hon. William Macdougall had been appointed Governor of the new territories. He left for the scene in September, but shortly after crossing the American boundary line, was confronted by a hostile force under Louis Riel, and forced to withdraw to the United States. The story of the Red River rebellion will also be narrated in a future part of the work. On the 20th of the following May the Province of Manitoba was constituted by Act of Parliament, and in July, 1871, British Columbia was admitted into the Confederation.

During the last named year, on the 27th of February, a Joint High Commission met at Washington in order to settle the Alabama claims, the fisheries question, the San Juan boundary, and other matters in dispute between Great Britain and the United States. Sir John Macdonald indirectly represented Canada as one of the British Commissioners. In this country great dissatisfaction was manifested that no compensation was secured for the loss and expense caused by the Fenian raids of 1866 and 1870, but the Americans excluded Canadian claims on the ground that the subject had not been referred to the Commission. In 1872 a general election took place, in due course, for the House of Commons, and the Government once more secured a majority. In the previous June, the Earl of Dufferin had arrived at Quebec as Governor-General in place of Lord Lisgar.

Before entering upon a perplexing chapter in the Dominion history, it may be well to pause, and note a few of the Scots not hitherto mentioned in this work. When the new House assembled in March, 1873, Mr James Cockburn, M. P. for West Northumberland, was re-elected Speaker. It is only after some hesitation that Mr Speaker is made to figure in our list, for he was born at that border-town of uncertain nationality—Berwick-upon-Tweed. Nominally it is in England, ethnologically its people are Scots, and certainly Cockburn is not an English name. [Mr. Fennings Taylor writes (Portraits of British Americans, p. 239): "Natives of the town are not unfrequently at a loss to tell in a word the kingdom to which they belong." The writer recollects a cautious answer given to such a question: "My blood is all Scotch and my heart is all English, and I was born at the town of Berwick-upon-Tweed."] There, at all events, the hon. gentleman was born on the 13th February, 1819. When he was about thirteen years of age the family removed to Canada, and he completed his education at Upper Canada College, Toronto.

Having chosen the legal profession, Mr. Cockburn was called to the bar in 1846, and practised at Cobourg. At the general election of 1861 he succeeded in defeating the Hon. Sidney Smith, Postmaster-General, by the narrow majority of twenty-seven. In politics, Mr. Cockburn was a Conservative, but on this occasion he contested West Northumberland as an independent candidate. Party lines, however, were so closely drawn that neutrality on crucial divisions was out of the question. When, therefore, the Government was defeated in 1862 on the Militia Bill, he was found amongst the minority, and went into opposition with the Conservative party. In 1863 he moved a strong resolution, censuring the elevation of Mr. Sicotte to the Bench as a violation of the independence of Parliament, which was only lost by a majority of two. After a gallant struggle, and repeated rebuffs, Mr. Sandfield Macdonald resigned in March, 1864. When the Tache-Macdonald Cabinet was formed, Mr. Cockburn became Solicitor-General West, and, on presenting himself to his constituents, was re-elected by a majority of over four hundred. In 1867 he was returned to the Commons by acclamation, and, on motion of Sir John A. Macdonald, unanimously elected Speaker. For this position, not only his careful study of parliamentary procedure, but his cool and imperturbable temper, admirably fitted him. In 1872, as above stated, Mr. Cockburn was re-elected at the opening of a most memorable Session, the result of which proved fatal to his public position. When the House was dissolved under Mr. Mackenzie’s Administration, Mr. Cockburn was defeated by Mr. William Kerr—the majority against him being two hundred and eighty-five. The sitting member was unseated on petition, and a new election was held, but Mr. Cockburn was not this time a candidate. More fortunate in 1878, he again secured his old seat, but only by a majority of eighty-eight over Mr. Kerr. In 1881 he was appointed a Commissioner to codify the Dominion Statutes, and consequently resigned.

A few of the Senators may now be referred to briefly. One of the oldest legislators at present in the Upper House is Lieut.-Colonel, the Hon. Walter Hamilton Dickson, of Niagara. He is of Scottish descent, and his father sat many years ago in the Legislative Council of Upper Canada. The son was born in 1805 in that Province. He entered public life thirty-eight years ago, and sat for Niagara in the Assembly from 1844 to 1851. In 1855 he became a member of the Legislative Council before it was elective, and sat there until the Union. Called to the Senate he has remained there ever since, although now almost an octogenarian.

The Hon. George William Allan has already been referred to more than once, as the son of the Hon. William Allan, for many years a member of the Legislative and Executive Councils of Upper Canada. The present Senator was born at Toronto early in January, 1822, and was educated at Upper Canada College. Mr. Allan chose the legal profession and was called to the bar in 1846; but he has never practised regularly as a lawyer. In other pursuits, however, he has been an active worker, having long been Chief Commissioner of the Canada Company, and President or Director in financial corporations. The degree of P. C. L. was conferred upon him by Trinity College, of which University Mr. Allan is Chancellor. His interest in science and art is shown by the fact that he is a Fellow both of the Royal Geographical Society and Zoological Society of England, and has taken a deep interest in the Palestine Exploration Fund. He has also been President of the Upper Canada Bible Society for some years. In 1855, Mr. Allan was elected Mayor of Toronto by the City Council, and three years after contested the York Division of the Legislative Council, for which he was returned by an overwhelming majority. This position he occupied until 1867, when he was called to the Senate. In Toronto, Mr. Allan’s name has been associated with many institutions besides those mentioned, for he has been President of the Mechanics’ Institute, the Canadian Institute, and the Horticultural Society. The Hon. Donald McDonald was born in the State of New York, in 1816, whither his father had gone from Inverness early in the century. When Mr. McDonald was yet young his family removed to Upper Canada, where he received his education. He also belonged to the Canada Company, and occupied for some years the positions of Trustee of Queen’s University and Vice-President of the Royal Canadian Bank. In 1858 he entered the Legislative Council as representative of the Tecumseth Division, having been elected by a majority of nearly four hundred. He was re-elected, and in 1867 was called to the Senate. Mr. McDonald died about three years and a half ago.

The Hon. David Lewis Macpherson is above all things a Highlander. He was born in the far awa’ North in September, 1818. He was educated at the Inverness Royal Academy, and when only seventeen came out to Canada to push his fortunes. His elder brother had already established himself in business as chief member of the forwarding firm of Macpherson, Crane & Co., at Montreal. In 1842 the future Senator became a partner, and succeeded; mainly by his native shrewdness and enterprise. When the railway was brought upon the scene, Mr. Macpherson at once took advantage of the revolution impending. In 1851, associated with Sir Alexander Galt, Mr. Holton, and others, he secured a charter for a railway from Montreal to Kingston. This line was the nucleus of the future Grand Trunk. In 1853, after the incorporation of the latter Company, he allied himself with Mr. C. S. Gzowski in order to construct the Toronto and Sarnia Railway. In later years these gentlemen have been engaged on other lines, as well as on the Toronto Rolling Mills, and the International Bridge Company over the Niagara. In 1872 Mr. Macpherson was President of the Interoceanic Railway Company, but the Government gave its preference to the rival scheme of Sir Hugh Allan. His first entry into public life was as member of the Saugeen Division in the Legislative Council, for which he elected was over Mr. Snider by a majority of twelve hundred. The Hon. John McMurrich, who had previously represented the Division, at first intended to contest it, but retired before the day of nomination. When a Board of Arbitration was nominated to settle the debts and assets of the old Province of Canada, Mr. Macpherson was appointed on behalf of Ontario. The award was duly made, but the Quebec representative had withdrawn from the arbitration, and the matter remains unsettled until now, notwithstanding that the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council has confirmed the award. From November, 1873, to the autumn of 1878, the hon. gentleman was a vigorous opponent of the Mackenzie Government—his assaults being chiefly made on matters of finance; and he has, from time to time, issued vigorous pamphlets upon his favourite subject. These have, no doubt, carried great weight, coming, as they do, from a gentleman thoroughly acquainted with the matters in dispute. On the 10th February, 1880, Mr. Macpherson was made Speaker of the Senate, but he has since been temporarily in charge of a department. Amongst other positions filled by the Senator, are a Directorship of Molsons Bank, and of the Permanent Building Society. When a resident of Montreal he was Vice-President of the Board of Trade, and, at Toronto, President of the St. Andrew’s Society.

The Hon. John McMurrich, mentioned above, although not a member of the Senate, deserves to be noticed here, as one of the best esteemed and oldest residents of Toronto. Mr. McMurrich was born at Renfrewshire, in 1804. He has been entirely the architect of his own fortunes, like most of our Canadian Scots. Many years ago he became a member of the firm of Bryce, McMurrich & Co., of Toronto, the senior partner residing in Scotland. The house is one of the oldest wholesale dry goods establishments in the city, and it owes its stability entirely to the energy and probity of Mr. McMurrich. For several years he sat at the City Council Board as Alderman, and in 1856, when the Legislative Council became elective, unsuccessfully contested the Saugeen Division. In 1862, however, the Hon. James Patton, who had been appointed Solicitor-General West, appeared for re-election, and was defeated by Mr. McMurrich, his majority being nearly seven hundred and fifty. In 1864, as we have seen, the hon. gentleman declined a contest. In 1867 he was a successful candidate for North York to the Ontario Assembly, his majority being over two hundred. In March, 1871, he was defeated by his former opponent Mr. Boultbee, by the narrow majority of five, and has not since re-entered public life. Mr. McMurrich is a Liberal in politics, and a Presbyterian in religious belief. He has filled many positions of trust, having been President of the Western Assurance Company, the Commercial Building Society, and, if the writer mistake not, of the St. Andrew’s Society. Until the amalgamation recently effected, he was also a Director and Treasurer of the Dominion Telegraph Company. In connection with the Church, he has been an ardent and indefatigable worker, and for many years an elder and the representative of Knox Church in the Presbytery, Synod, and General Assembly. No citizen of Toronto is more highly respected than Mr. McMurrich, as well for the energy and integrity which have always characterized him, as for the frankness and the benignity of his disposition. Perhaps had he been self-assertive, he might have figured more prominently in public life; yet his life-work, unobtrusively performed, has been of no inconsiderable value. Although in his seventy-eighth year, Mr. McMurrich is still hale and active. His eldest son, William Barclay, Mayor of Toronto, has been twice elected to the civic chair, and is the first native Torontonian who has occupied it.

The Hon. Roderick Matheson was descended of an old Highland family, and his great grandfather, the head of the clan, fell in fight at Glen Shiel, Glenelg, in 1719. Born in Ross-shire, and educated at Inverness, he came early to this country. During the war of 1812 he became Ensign of the Glengarry Light Infantry, and was present in action at York, Sackett’s Harbour, Fort George, Lundy’s Lane, and Fort Erie, receiving a wound at the second of those places. Subsequently he was appointed Colonel commanding the First Military District of Ontario. In 1847, Mr. Matheson was called to the Legislative Council, and twenty years afterwards to the Senate. He died at an advanced age in 1872.

The Hon. John Simpson also came from the North of Scotland, having been born at Rothes, near Elgin. While still a child he accompanied his family to Upper Canada, where they settled on the "Scotch line," at Perth. Mr. Simpson entered upon active life as clerk in a merchant’s establishment, and rose, in course of time, to be his employer’s partner. In 1848, he opened a branch of the Bank of Montreal at Bowmanville, and subsequently at Whitby. In 1857, the Ontario Bank was founded, and Mr. Simpson became its President—a position he occupied until a year or two ago. In 1856, he was elected to the Legislative Council for Queen’s Division, by an immense majority over Mr. Ruttan, and in 1867 called to the Senate, of which he is still a member. When the Province of Manitoba was constituted, in 1870, it became necessary to appoint two Senators to represent it. One of these was Mr. John Sutherland, of Kildonan. His father, Alexander, an old soldier of the Peninsular war, from the North of Scotland, emigrated in 1815, and ultimately settled at Red River in 1821. Mr. John Sutherland served as a member of the Assiniboine Council from 1866 until the annexation of the territories of Canada. In 1870 he became the first Sheriff of Manitoba, but resigned on his appointment to the Senate, in December, the following year. The Hon. William John Macdonald, Senator from British Columbia, can boast descent from the Lord of the Isles. His father, Major Alexander Macdonald resided at North Uist and Skye. His son was born in Inverness-shire, in 1832, and removed to British Columbia in 1851. He appears to have inherited his father’s military instincts since he is President of the Provincial Rifle Association. For some years Mr. Macdonald was in the service of the Hudson Bay Company, and while thus employed, acted as Captain of Militia and Collector of Customs at Victoria. In 1866 and 1871 he filled the Mayor’s chair, and was also a member of the Board of Education, and Tax Court, as well as a Road Commissioner. In 1859, he was called to the Assembly, and subsequently became a member of the Legislative Council. In December, 1871, British Columbia having been admitted into the Union, Mr. W. J. Macdonald was called to the Senate, of which he is still a member. Another Senator from the extreme Western Province was Mr. Cornwall, an Englishman, but in 1881, he accepted the Lieutenant-Governorship of his Province, and consequently resigned his seat. Some months later the vacancy was filled by the appointment of Dr. Thomas Robert McInnes, M.P. at the time for New Westminster. Dr. McInnes’ father hailed from Inverness, and his mother from Paisley. He himself was born at Lake Ainslie, N.S., in November, 1840. Educated at Truro and Harvard, he embraced the medical profession, and removed temporarily to Dresden, Ontario, where he married. He was reeve of that village in 1874, but in that year removed to British Columbia. For two years from the beginning of 1876, Dr. McInnes was Mayor of New Westminster, and has been physician to the hospital during nearly eight years. In 1878 he received his appointment as Medical Superintendent of the Lunatic Asylum, and in March he entered Parliament, having been chosen to replace the sitting member, Mr. Cunningham, who resigned. In the autumn, at the general election, Dr. McInnes was again returned by a majority of nearly ninety. He is not strictly a party-man, but a strong advocate of the Pacific Railway, favours compulsory voting and equitable reciprocity with the States, if attainable.

The Hon. Adam Hope, a well-known merchant of Hamilton, was born in East Lothian, Scotland, early in 1813. His family had for some generations been tillers of the soil, and both his father and brother were not only skilled agriculturalists, but wrote treatises on scientific farming. After serving for some years in a counting-house at Leith, he emigrated to Canada in 1834, and again entered a business office in the establishment of Messrs. Young, Weir & Co., of Hamilton, U.C. In the year of the rebellion, Mr. Hope began on his own account at St. Thomas, a very inconsiderable hamlet in those days. During the troubles he shouldered his musket as a volunteer, but is not likely to have seen even a skirmish. In the year 1845 he removed to London, where he reached the foremost rank as a merchant. Finally, in 1865, he once more changed his base of operations, establishing himself in Hamilton, where he is still the head of a wealthy and enterprising firm, and a bank director. Although always a prominent Reformer, Mr. Hope never entered public life until 1877, when he was called to the Senate by the Hon. Alexander Mackenzie. He is a good speaker and an intelligent legislator, as well as a shrewd and successful merchant.

A Senator of older standing is the Hon. George Alexander, who was born in Banffshire, in 1814, and educated at Aberdeen University. He is chiefly known in connection with the Provincial Agricultural Association, of which he was President in 1857, and a Director for nearly ten years afterwards. In 1858 he contested the Gore Division with a brother Scot, Mr. James Cowan, and was elected but by a majority of only seventy-six, with four thousand three hundred votes cast. Mr. Alexander retained his seat until the Union, but was not called to the Senate until May, 1873, when he succeeded the Hon. A. A. Burnham, deceased. In politics, the Senator is a staunch Conservative.

Amongst the members of the Dominion Government, between 1867 and 1873, will be found the name of the Hon. Alexander Morris. He is a son of the late Hon. William Morris referred to in a previous volume, and a nephew of the Hon. James Morris. His father hailed from Paisley; but he himself was born at Perth, Ontario, in March, 1826. After receiving a grammar-school training, Mr. Morris completed his studies at Glasgow and McGill Universities. Of the latter institution he was the first graduate in arts, and subsequently took the degrees of B.C.L. and D.C.L. Proceeding thence to the legal profession, he was duly called to the Bar of Upper Canada in 1851, of Lower Canada in the same year, and of Manitoba in 1872. It appears that Mr. Morris had intended to enter into practice at Toronto, but family reasons attracted him to Montreal, where he entered into partnership with Mr. (afterwards Judge) Torrance. In 1861 be presented himself for South Lanark, his father’s old constituency, and was returned by an overwhelming majority. Previous to entering public life, Mr. Morris had become known to the world as a writer and lecturer of no mean ability. In 1855 he took the second prize for his essay on "Canada and Her Resources," and subsequently issued other books, professional and national. Among the latter was "Nova Britannia; or British North America, its Extent and Future," and another on "The Hudson Bay and Pacific Territories." At the opening of his first Session in Parliament, Mr. Morris made a maiden speech during the debate on the Address.

South Lanark continued to return the hon. gentleman until the Union, and in 1867 he was elected from it to the Commons by acclamation. In the year 1869, Mr. Morris became a member of the Privy Council, being sworn in as Minister of Inland Revenue. This office he held until July, 1872, when he was appointed Chief Justice of the Court of Queen’s Bench in Manitoba. He was the first incumbent of that office, but did not fill it long as, in December of the same year, he was called to the Lieutenant-Governorship of the Province and the North-West Territories, in place of the Hon. Mr. Archibald. At the same time he also became Commissioner of Indian Affairs, in which capacity he concluded several treaties by which lands were purchased from the natives. The amount of territory covered by these treaties was exceedingly large, extending from the highlands above Lake Superior westward to the Rocky Mountains, and covering the line of the Pacific Railway. The Lieutenant-Governor’s career was eminently successful, and on his retirement, he carried with him the regrets and good wishes of all parties. Mr. Morris, at the general election of 1878, contested Selkirk for the Commons with the Hon. Donald A. Smith, but was defeated, his opponent receiving five hundred and fifty-five votes to five hundred and forty-six At his next venture, he was more successful. In December, 1878, the Hon. M. C. Cameron resigned on his appointment to a judgeship in the Queen’s Bench, and Mr. Morris was elected in his place, Mr. John Leys being the unsuccessful candidate. At the general election held in June, 1879, Mr. Morris being again a candidate, was opposed by Mr. Mowat, the Provincial Premier. The contest waxed close and warm, but the sitting member succeeded by a majority of fifty-seven. [The vote stood: Morris, 2,132; Mowat, 2,075.] Mr. Mowat, however, was secure of a seat, as he had been returned by an overwhelming majority for North Oxford. Since his appearance in the Ontario Assembly Mr. Morris has proved himself a valuable member, working with the Opposition, and one of the most prominent members of it. The situation can hardly be agreeable to a man of action, since the minority is at present so small as to be practically impotent for any purpose but that of criticism upon Government measures and administration.

There are some Commoners of this period who may engage our attention briefly. Mr. Thos. Bain who has represented North Wentworth in two Parliaments was born in Stirlingshire, and came to Canada in 1837, at the age of three years. The family settled in the township of West Flamboro’ where he still resides. He served as Reeve for some years and, in 1870, was elected Warden of the County. In 1872,he entered the Commons for the North Riding, having been elected by a majority of nearly a hundred over a "brither Scot," Mr. Robert McKechnie, of Dundas. In 1874, he was returned by acclamation, and in 1878 by a majority of one hundred and six. Mr. Bain has always been a Liberal, and during the period under consideration opposed the Administration.

Mr. David Blain, LL.D., came of an old family in the south of Scotland, and was born near Ayr, Robert Burns’ native town, in August, 1832. After receiving his early training in Scotland he removed to Canada and entered the Provincial Normal School whence he emerged with a first-class certificate. In 1856, Mr. Blain turned his attention to the law and entered as a student with the Messrs. Macdonald. He was called to the Bar in 1860, and in the same year received the degree of LL.B. from the University of Toronto. He practised in partnership successively with the late Mr. Albert Prince, and the present Mr. Justice Ferguson of the Chancery Division. He took the degree of LL.D., in 1870. Mr. Blain, who has always been a Liberal entered public life in 1872 as member for West York, having defeated Mr. Walter Tyrrell by a majority of two hundred and thirteen. At the general election of 1874, as might have been expected his success was still more marked. He was returned over Mr. Nathaniel C. Wallace by more than two votes to one. During that Parliament, he proved a staunch supporter of Mr. Mackenzie; but in 1878 the re-action acted fatally for him, and he was defeated by Mr. Wallace, the latter’s majority being two hundred and ten. Since then Mr. Blain has been out of public life, but he is still an active worker and has recently taken up the pen on behalf of his Alma Mater and Upper Canada College.

Lieutenant Colonel James Brown, of Belleville, has been member for West Hastings in the Commons ever since Confederation. He was born in Scotland in 1826, and removed to Canada when young. Residing at Belleville he has long been a member of a flourishing firm of iron manufacturers. Lieut.-Col. of the 49th volunteer regiment and director of the Belleville and North Hastings Railway. Mr. Brown has filled the civic chair at Belleville and was Reeve of Hastings for six years. A Conservative in politics, he first tried his fortunes in 1861, as a candidate for election to the Provincial Assembly for the South Riding, but was defeated by the Hon. Lewis Wallbridge. At the first general election for the Commons; he was more successful, being returned over Dr. Holden by four hundred and sixty votes. In 1872 his majority was equally large; in 1874, he was virtually elected by acclamation; and in 1878, with Mr. Wallbridge again as his opponent by a diminished majority—two hundred and fifty. Although, as we have said, a Conservative, Col. Brown voted against the Government on the Washington Treaty and the Pacific Railway scheme, and has manifested his independence of character throughout. Mr. Daniel B. Chisholm sprung of an old Highland clan, was born in the neighbourhood of Hamilton, on the 2nd of November, 1832. His grandfather who hailed from Inverness, had settled there on the north shore of Burlington Bay so far back as 1794 and survived until 1842 when he died a centenarian. The old pioneer was a U. E. Loyalist who originally emigrated to New York; but in 1772 he left for Nova Scotia, residing there for about seven years. He subsequently settled at Niagara where he remained until the year 1794 when he removed to East Flamboro’ in Wentworth. His son, Col. George, served when a mere boy in the war of 1812, and witnessed as a Colonel of the militia in 1837, the burning of the rebel transport Caroline. It is said that he narrowly escaped death on one occasion, for the ball aimed at him lodged in the stock of his musket. He died in 1872. David Black Chisholm first began life as a farmer; but in 1857 sold out and attended Victoria College. Two years after he entered the office of Mr. Miles O’Reilly, Q.C., to study law, and in 1864 was called to the bar. Practising in Hamilton, he soon attained an enviable position not only from his natural abilities, but from his strong powers of physical endurance. Mr. Chisholm sat for some years in the City Council and was Mayor in 1871 and 1872. In 1872 he was elected to represent Hamilton in the House of Commons with Mr. Witton as his colleague. When the reaction occurred, he withdrew from the representation of the city, but was elected for Halton in 1874, by a majority of twenty-three over Mr. John White. Unfortunately he was unseated on petition, and on appealing again to the constituency was defeated by Mr. William McCraney, the majority being over one hundred and thirty, Mr. Chisholm has not since entered public life. He has been connected with a large number of companies and served also as President of the Burlington Literary Society. In politics, he is a Liberal Conservative; in religion, Presbyterian; also a strong total abstinence man, never having, it is said, tasted intoxicating liquor.

Mr. Robert Cunningham, a journalist whose career was early brought to a close by death, was born in the neighbourhood of Kilmarnock, Ayrshire. He graduated at Glasgow University in arts, and at London University in science. Having married an Aberdonian six years before, he came to Canada in 1868 and was employed on the press. When the Red River insurrection broke out he was sent to the scene by the Globe newspaper as special correspondent, and subsequently by the Telegraph. When the trouble was over he assisted in founding and editing the Manitoban at Winnipeg. In 1872 he was elected to the Commons for Marquette, by a large majority over the Hon. Mr. Norquay, now Premier of the Province. Mr. Cunningham was re-elected in 1874 to all appearance by a vote of three hundred and ninety-three to three hundred and fifty-one polled by Mr. Ryan; but on a scrutiny no less than sixty-four votes were struck off the former’s list, and Mr. Ryan was consequently declared elected. Mr. Cunningham, however, had died six or seven weeks before, on the 4th of July, 1874.

Another able and active worker in political life is Mr. James David Edgar, although he has been singularly and undeservedly the victim of misfortune at the polls. His father, also named James, emigrated, with his newly married wife, from Keithock, Forfarshire, in 1840. The following August his son was born in the Eastern, Townships, Quebec. Educated at Lennoxville and elsewhere, he entered upon the study of the law under the late Hon. J. Hillyard Cameron, and was admitted to the Bar in 1864. His first partnership was formed with Mr. S. Strong, Q.O., now one of the Supreme Court Judges. His first election was to the City Council of Toronto, in 1866; but in 1871, having been nominated by a convention, he contested unsuccessfully the representation of Monck in the Local Legislature. He was beaten, however, only by the narrow majority of five. Next year the general election for the Commons took place, and Mr. Edgar was fortunate enough to be elected by a majority of forty-two over Mr. Lachlin McCallum, although the latter was a resident candidate. During the two years which followed, Mr. Edgar was an indefatigable worker on the Reform side, and as "whip" of the party during the Pacific Railway discussions did it essential service. The elections of 1874, although they resulted in an overwhelming success for the new Government, were personally disastrous to one who deserved to participate in the triumph. Mr. Edgar lost his seat, being defeated by his old opponent, the majority being only thirty-four. He was despatched shortly after to British Columbia to settle upon some modification of the terms of Union. On his return, he submitted the results of his mission, which, having been adopted by the Colonial Secretary, were afterwards known as the "Carnarvon terms." Since then Mr. Edgar has been unsuccessfully a candidate for more than one constituency. During his absence, he was nominated for South Oxford, the seat having become vacant by the appointment of Mr. Bodwell as Superintendent of the Welland Canal. Unhappily there was a schism in the Reform ranks, and he was badly beaten. In March, he once more contested Monck, Mr. McCallum having been unseated, but was again unsuccessful, although the majority against him was only four. In 1876, the Hon. Malcolm Cameron, M.P. for South Ontario, died, and Mr. Edgar received the Reform nomination. Both sides made the most strenuous exertions, but the Hon. Mr. Gibbs was elected by a small majority. Lastly, in 1878, he again contested Monck, but was once more defeated by Mr. McCallum, whose majority reached only twenty-eight. Mr. Edgar is still in the prime of life and mental vigour, and may be content to await a turn in the tide of political fortune. It should be added that he has been President of several associations; has written several works on legal and economical subjects, and is the author of some spirited lyrics, for one of which he was conceded a prize at Montreal in 1874. On the organization of the Ontario Pacific Junction Company, Mr. Edgar was elected its first President.

Dr. James Alexander Grant, formerly M.P. for Russell, was born in Inverness-shire on the 8th of August, 1829. His grandfather, a Scottish advocate, was well known as a writer on archaeological subjects. The year after his birth, Dr. Grant’s parents removed to Canada, where, at Queen’s and McGill Universities, the son was trained for his profession. As a physician and surgeon, he early acquired an enviable reputation; but he did not confine himself to ordinary routine of practice. His pen has for many years been busily employed in contributions to British and American periodicals on medicine, natural history and geology. Dr. Grant is a Fellow of the Geological Society of England and a member of the Academy of the Natural Sciences at Philadelphia. In 1872, he was elected President of Canadian Medical Association, and, shortly afterwards, of the St. Andrew’s Society. He had previously served in the chair of the Medical Council for Canada West and of the Mechanics’ Institute and Athenaeum at Ottawa. In 1867, he was elected as the first member from Russell to the House of Commons, by a majority of nearly six hundred over Mr. Robert Bell, also a Scot, and well known as a journalist and railway director. In 1872, his opponent was the Hon. Malcolm Cameron, but the doctor triumphed by about two hundred and sixty of a majority. During the reaction of 1874, however, he was not so fortunate, being defeated by Mr. Blackburn, the son of a Glasgow merchant, by a majority of sixty-four. He did not contest the county in 1878. Dr. Grant has passed a very active life in many spheres of labour, and will probably spend many years yet in the public service, if, as has been rumoured, he is to be raised to the Senate. In politics he has always been a Liberal-Conservative.

Lieutenant-Colonel the Hon. Donald Alexander Macdonald, a brother of the late Hon. John Sandfield Macdonald, was born at St. Raphael’s, Quebec, and educated there under the late Rev. Dr. Macdonell, subsequently Roman Catholic Bishop of Kingston. Mr. Macdonald was a contractor on the Grand Trunk Railway, served as Warden of the united counties of Stormont, Dundas and Glengarry, and Lieutenant Colonel of the Glengarry Reserves. He is also connected with several railway and banking corporations. In 1857 he first appeared in Parliament as M.P.P. for Glengarry and retained his seat until the Union. In 1867 and 1872 he was chosen to represent his county in the Commons, once by acclamation. In 1871, Mr. Macdonald was offered the Treasurership of Ontario, but declined the office. When Mr. Mackenzie formed his government at Ottawa, the member for Glengarry was selected as Postmaster-General, and again succeeded in securing an unanimous election, as well as subsequently in 1874. He remained in office until May 1875, when he was elevated to the post of Lieutenant-Governor of Ontario in place of the Hon. John Crawford, deceased. Mr. Macdonald served his full term at Toronto, giving place in 1880, to the Hon. J. B. Robinson. He has since been out of public life, but will doubtless, re-enter the arena at an early date.

Mr. William Macdougall, Q.C., is a Scot by birth, having been born there in 1831. His father represented Drummond and Arthabaska between the years 1851 and 1854. The son, who was young when his parents removed to this country, was trained to the law and has served on the directorate of the North Shore, and other Lower Canadian lines. In 1863, he contested unsuccessfully the constituency of Three Rivers, but was returned by acclamation on the resignation of the sitting member, in 1868. This seat he retained November 1878 when he accepted an office under the Crown, and consequently resigned. Mr. Angus Morrison, Q.C., is a son of the late Mr. Hugh Morrison, who hailed from Sutherlandshire, and a brother of the Hon. Mr. Justice Morrison, of the Ontario Bench. He himself was born at Edinburgh in 1822, and came out to Canada when about twelve years of age. Educated for the bar, he has served as a Bencher of the Law Society for some years, and has also been a President and director of a number of corporations, as well as President of the St. Andrew’s Society. Mr. Morrison first entered Parliament in 1858 for North Simcoe and filled that seat until 1863 when he suffered defeat. In 1864, however, he was returned for Niagara, and again to the Commons at the time of the Union. At the local elections in 1867, Mr. Morrison endeavoured to secure election for his old constituency to the Assembly, but was defeated, Mr. William Lount being victorious by a majority of a hundred and thirty-one. When the general elections for 1874 were commenced, he retired from Niagara, and attempted to secure a seat for Centre Toronto. Mr. Robert Wilkes, however, was elected by a majority of two hundred and eighty-four. Since then, Mr. Morrison has not presented himself as a candidate for parliamentary honours. For two years he was an alderman in the Toronto City Council, and in 1875, ran for the mayoralty, but withdrew before polling-day. In the following year, however, he was successful, defeating ex-Mayor Medcalf by nearly two thousand majority; and in 1877 he was re-elected by about e1even hundred. Mr. Morrison has always been an indefatigable worker for the city of his residence, and is well and deservedly esteemed for his generous and kindly traits of character.

Mr. Thomas Oliver, a Scot by birth, has represented North Oxford continuously from 1866 until now. He was originally a school teacher, but after a few years’ experience, entered mercantile life. After amassing a competency he retired. Mr. Oliver has been Reeve of Woodstock and Warden of his county. It may be added that he was first elected to fill a vacancy caused by the lamented and premature death of Mr. Hope Mackenzie, a brother of the ex-Prime Minister. Mr. William Paterson, has represented South Brant since 1872, having been returned at three successive general elections. His father came from Aberdeen, with his wife in 1836, and the son was born at Hamilton in September, 1839. In 1854 Mr. Paterson removed to Brantford, and after serving for some years as a clerk, commenced in 1803 a baking and confectionery establishment, which has succeeded marvellously. He has served in the Town Council, and was Mayor of Brantford in 1872. In the same year he became a candidate for South Brant, and defeated the Finance Minister, Sir Francis Hincks, by a majority of two hundred and seventy-two. The latter, however, had secured a seat for Vancouver, B. C. In 1874, Mr. Paterson’s majority was over four hundred and fifty, and in 1878, almost two hundred. He is a fluent speaker and one of the Liberal leaders.

Mr. James Young, at present member of the Ontario Assembly for North Brant, was, at the period under consideration, in the Commons, as M. P., for South Waterloo. His father came from Roxburghshire in 1834, and his son was born at Galt, in 1835. Having chosen the printing business, Mr. James Young, when only a "typo" eighteen years old, purchased the Dumfries Reformer which he edited for ten years thereafter. He also used his pen in two prize essays on Canada’s "Agricultural Resources," and "The Reciprocity Treaty." In 1867, he contested South Waterloo for the Commons and was returned over Mr. James Cowan, who is also a Scot, by a majority of about three hundred and sixty. As a legislator, Mr. Young proved himself a highly useful man, having served on the Public Accounts Committee, and been instrumental in promoting the ballot and the publication of the Commons’ debates. In 1872 and again 1874 he was re-elected by acclamation, and at one time it was confidently expected that he would be made a Minister of the Crown under Mr. Mackenzie. In 1878 the tables turned, however, and he was defeated by Mr. Meruer, although only by the narrow majority of forty-four. The general elections for the Local House taking place in the following year, Mr. Young was elected for North Brant by a majority of three hundred and forty over Mr. Baird. He has been an active director of more than one Insurance company and has also done essential service as President of the Mechanics’ Institute Association.

Of the other members of Parliament in 1872, who could boast their Scottish origin, there is only space to note briefly two or three. Mr. James Findlay who sat for North Renfrew was born at Chateauguay, his father having arrived from Scotland in 1829. He was the editor and proprietor of the Pembroke Observer. In 1869, he was a candidate for the riding, but suffered defeat. Prior to that time, Mr. Rankin, the son of an Argyleshire man had sat for the constituency. In 1872, Mr. Findlay was more fortunate, being elected by a majority of more then a hundred over Mr. Peter White, a Scot by descent. In 1874, Mr. Findlay was not a candidate; but in 1878 he measured swords with his former opponent, but was defeated by a majority of three hundred and fifty. Mr. Gavin Fleming was born near Falkirk in Stirlingshire, in June, 1826. He came to Canada in 1829 and, after twenty years’ experience as a merchant, retired in 1871. He was elected for North Brant in 1872, by a majority of over three hundred over Mr. Andrew Baird, also a Scot. In 1874, Mr. Fleming was returned by acclamation on the Liberal wave of that year; but in 1878 being again opposed, though ineffectually, his majority reached nearly two hundred. He has been Treasurer of South Dumfries, and is a magistrate in his county. Mr. Daniel Galbraith, who was removed by death in 1880, hailed from Glasgow where he first saw the light in 1815. When about six years of age he came to Canada with his father and settled in Lanark County, Ont. Mr. Galbraith was a farmer, and served as Warden of the county. He was also on the directorate of the Brockville and Ottawa Railway. His first appearance in public life was as representative of the north riding in the Ontario Assembly to which he was elected by acclamation in 1867 and 1871. At the General Election for the Commons in 1872, he resigned his seat in order to be a candidate for the Commons, and was replaced by Mr. W. C. Caldwell, B.A., the son of a Scot. This time he was not permitted to walk the course. Two opponents presented themselves, Mr. Rosamond, of Almonte, and the Hon. William Macdougall. Mr. Galbraith, however, was elected by a plurality of a hundred and forty over the former competitor. In 1874, Mr. Galbraith was chosen by acclamation, and in 1878 by a majority of forty-three over Mr. Jamieson, of Perth. At his death, Mr. Macdonell, a grand-nephew of Brock’s gallant aide-de-camp, succeeded him in the representation of the riding.

The three gentlemen above noted were all Liberals; the member for South Lanark in 1872, and ever since is a Conservative. John Graham Haggart is the son of a Perthshire gentleman, and his mother hailed from the Isle of Skye. He himself was born at Perth, Ontario, in 1836, and is a corn and grist mill owner. For several years he served as Mayor of his native town; but his first essays at legislative distinction were unfortunate. Both in 1867 and 1869, he contested the riding for the Ontario Assembly, but was defeated. In 1872, however, he appeared as a candidate for the Commons and was elected by an overwhelming majority over Mr. James Bell, a fellow-townsman. At the general election of 1874, his majority over Mr. Gould, of Smith’s Falls, was over four hundred; and once more in 1878, he was elected by over three hundred votes. Mr. George William Ross, M.P., for West Middlesex is the son of Ross-shire parents who came to Upper Canada in 1834. He was born in the township of Williams, Middlesex County, in September, 1841. Educated at the Provincial Normal School, Mr. Ross was engaged in teaching for ten years from 1857 to 1867. He has also been connected with the newspaper press, as editor of the Strathroy Age and Seaforth Expositor, both Reform journals, as well as of professional papers. As a member of the Central Committee of Examiners, he has laboured earnestly in the cause of education. Mr. Ross’ name, however, is more generally known, in connection with the temperance movement, as a strong advocate of a prohibitory liquor law. In the Sons of Temperance he served as G.W.P. for two years, and also as M.W.P. of North America in the National Division for a like term. In 1872 Mr. Ross was first elected to Parliament as M.P. for West Middlesex by a majority of fifty-six over Mr. Angus P. Macdonald, of Glencoe, the well known contractor who sat in the Provincial Assembly from 1857 to 1861, and in the Commons from 1867 to 1872. In 1874, Mr. Ross was re-elected by acclamation, and in 1878, after a severe contest, by forty-eight over Mr. N. Currie. Of late Mr. Ross has turned his attention to law. He took a degree in the Albert University in 1879 and is about to apply for a call to the Bar. A namesake, Mr. James Ross, who hailed from Aberdeenshire, may be mentioned. Born in 1817, he was educated at Marischel College and took the degree of M.A. Having removed to Canada, he was Warden of the County of Wellington for two years, and member for North Wellington in the old Assembly from 1859 to 1861. In June 7th, 1868, he was elected by acclamation for Centre Wellington to the Commons, and in 1872, by a majority of forty-six over Dr. Orton. In 1874, Mr. Ross did not contest the seat, but on Dr. Orton’s being unseated, he was an unsuccessful candidate. Since then he has not entered the lists.


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