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Title: A Letter from Major Robert Carmichael-Smyth to His Friend, the Author of 'The Clockmaker'
Author: Carmichael-Smyth, Robert
Language: English
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Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "A Letter from Major Robert Carmichael-Smyth to His Friend, the Author of 'The Clockmaker'" ***

Library Project at http://www.tpdlp.net, Anne Storer and

[Illustration: Map of the North Atlantic Ocean]

                   A LETTER
                  HIS FRIEND

            Thoughts on the Subject
               A BRITISH COLONIAL
                  NOVA SCOTIA
                 NEW CALEDONIA

              *       *       *

"Let those, who discard speculations like these as wild and improbable,
recur to the state of public opinion at no very remote period on the
subject of Steam Navigation.

"Within the memory of persons not yet past the meridian of life the
impossibility of traversing by Steam Engine the channels and seas that
surround and intersect these islands was regarded as the dream of

                DR. LARDNER, 1840.

              *       *       *



       *       *       *       *       *


"It is the duty--the imperative duty--of every individual (however
humble) to express conscientiously, but calmly, his public opinions, for
by such means truth is elicited."[1] Hence it may be permitted the
writer of the annexed Letter to observe, that a momentous question is
now brought to the notice of the people of Great Britain,--that it ought
not to be neglected, until perhaps a voice from her colonial children
may go forth proclaiming "it is too late,"[see Note 64]--for then the
opportunity of uniting in firm and friendly bonds of union "this
wondrous empire on which the solar orb never sets" will have passed away
for ever.

      ----"Dum loquimur fugerit invida
      Ætas: carpe diem quàm minimùm credula postero."

              *       *       *

  [1] Montgomery Martin's History of the British Colonies, 1843;
  and to that work the writer of the following pages begs to refer all
  those who take an interest in the British North American Colonies. And
  if so humble an individual might be allowed to offer his advice, he
  would strongly recommend the republication, in a volume by itself, of
  the part connected with the North American Colonies.


                          "I shall tell you
      A pretty tale; it may be, you have heard it;
      But, since it serves my purpose, I will venture
      To scale't again."

"The duty of Government is first to regulate the stream of Emigration,
so that if a man be determined on leaving the United Kingdom he may
settle in one of its Colonies."--_Montgomery Martin, 1843._

"At this moment, when renewed attention is turned to all the Routes
which, during ages past, have from time to time been talked about, as
best fitted for a link of communication between the Atlantic and Pacific
Oceans,"--we call upon the people of Great Britain and her Government to
reflect, that--the best and shortest link of communication--the great
link required to unite all her dominions in one powerful chain--is now
in her own possession,--that--"it _is_ in vain to inculcate feelings of
brotherhood among mankind by moral influence alone; a sense of community
of interest _must_ be also established,"--that Great Britain can, in the
opening of the Route proposed, at the same time employ her own Children
at home and abroad, as well as her own continually increasing Capital.

That--"we have superabundance of Capital--a plethora of
Talent--Scientific and Commercial--they only want an outlet to be
beneficially employed."--_Morning Herald, 7th February, 1849._

That--"the Expansion of Capital would soon reach its ultimate boundary,
if that boundary itself did not continually increase."

That--"what the Legislature should desire and promote is not a greater
saving, but a greater return to savings, either by improved cultivation,
or by access to more fertile lands in other quarters of the globe."

That--"the Railway operations of the various nations of the world may be
looked upon as a sort of competition for the overflowing Capital of the
countries where Profits are low and Capital abundant."--_J. S. Mill,
Polit. Econ._

That--"each nation derives greater benefit from having an increasing
market in one of its own provinces, than in a foreign country."

That--"the possession of remote territories, is the only thing which can
secure to the population of a country those advantages derived from an
easy outlet, or prospect of outlet, to those persons who may be ill
provided for at home."--_Lord Brougham._

That--"we have an immense Colonial Empire. To its resources and
exigencies we now seem for the first time to awaken.[see Note 46]
Hitherto we have been content to consider it as a magnificent
incumbrance, that testified to our greatness but had nothing to do
with our interests or the welfare of our population."--_The Times,
20th January, 1849._

And that--"it must be acknowledged as a principle, that the Colonies of
England are an integral part of this country."--_D'Israeli._

              *       *       *

Again--"In certain parts of the Empire transportation was a very
valuable punishment, but there ought to be natural limits to it.
Transportation was very well in the infancy of a Colony, but as it
became more peopled and civilized, it was undesirable to deluge it
with a convict population. The subject of abolishing the penalty of
transportation was one of very great importance."--_Lord Brougham,

                        "But what mean I
      To speak so true at first? My office is
      To noise abroad....
      I have the letter here; yes, here it is:"

"The time has come when the great American and Colonial route of
travelling must commence at Halifax."[2]--_Great Western Letter Bag._
Yes! and be carried on to Frazer's River.[3]

  [2] Nova Scotia.

  [3] New Caledonia.

       *       *       *       *       *



Often have I looked back to the pleasant hours we passed on board the
good brig Tyrian, when, in the spring of 1838, we were quietly floating
over the waves of the broad Atlantic.[see Note 1] Never do I remember to
have crossed them so smoothly, and never certainly with more agreeable
companions. One of our party has long since departed for that country
from whose bourn no traveller returns. Poor Fairbanks! you knew him well
and valued his friendship--knew him to be a kind and a good man, and
that he loved his country well. Had he been as anxious to introduce
Railways into it as he was zealous about his Shubenacadie Canal, he
might perhaps have served it more effectually.[see Notes 2 and 37]
Another of our party, a true and hearty lover of his country, is still
amongst you; may his powerful mind so direct his great abilities as to
enable him to use them for his country's good; for much may yet be done
for Nova Scotia. Both he and you, I know well, have a friendly feeling
towards me, and you may perhaps have sometimes regretted, though not so
warmly as I have done (living as you both have been for years in the
midst of political excitement), that we have been so completely
separated. With this short preface, as an excuse for introducing your
names, I will now proceed, by recalling that moment so full of
excitement at the time and never to be forgotten,--when, to our
astonishment, we first saw the great ship Syrius steaming down directly
in the wake of the Tyrian. She was the first steamer, I believe, that
ever crossed the Atlantic for New York, and was then on her way back to
England. You will, I dare say, recollect the prompt decision of
Commander Jennings to carry his mail bags on board the steamer, and our
equally prompt decision not to quit our sailing craft, commanded as she
was by so kind and so excellent an officer. You will, I dare say,
recollect how soon flew the question through the captain's trumpet,
"Will you take charge of the mail?" "Yes, but be quick;" and the
trembling anxiety with which we watched mail bag after mail bag hoisted
up the deep waist of the Tyrian; then lowered into the small boat
below,--tossed about between the vessels, and finally all safely placed
on board the Syrius. It was a bold measure; for had one mail bag been
lost, our gallant commander would in all probability have been severely
censured, if it had not cost him his commission: as it was, I believe,
he received the thanks of the Admiralty. You will also, no doubt,
remember well the lively discussion the sight of this great steam ship
caused amongst us, and how earnestly I expressed my wish, that the
people of Halifax should bestir themselves, and not allow, without a
struggle, British mails and British passengers thus to be taken past
their very doors.[see Note 3] And now that we have lived to see
established what we then discussed (and about which the pen of the
Clockmaker's companion was not idle),[see Note 4] the great steam ship
road from and to Liverpool and Halifax, you will not perhaps be
astonished that (like the fly on the wheel) so humble an individual as
your old fellow passenger should have fancied when steaming (as he has
since often done) over the waves of that same Atlantic, that he too[see
Note 5] had had something to say in creating all the smoke he saw rising
before him. Of one thing, however, he is certain--that his companions,
Fairbanks, Howe and Haliburton (no insignificant names), had determined,
before leaving the Tyrian, that as soon as they reached London they
would wait upon the Colonial minister--point out to him the necessity
and importance of a steam communication from the mother country to her
children in the west, and plead the cause of Halifax;[see Note 6] and,
if I am not mistaken, Fairbanks and Howe proceeded first to Liverpool to
make some inquiries about expense, &c. &c. Be this however as it may, it
is all now matter of no consequence--the great nautical high road
between England and her North American Colonies has long been
established beyond a question, and the enterprising Cunard has shown by
his splendid steam vessels, that it may be depended upon beyond a doubt,
as a regular, a safe and an easy communication.[see Note 38] To him,
therefore, are due the thanks of the public, and the credit of
accomplishing this much wished-for route.

      "Whilst others bravely thought, he nobly dar'd."

But, my dear friend, in an age like the present, shall such a victory
content us? most assuredly not! The time has come when our great
Colonial land route of travelling must reach from Halifax to Frazer's
River, from the Atlantic to the Pacific--and there is still a grand and
a noble undertaking that must yet be accomplished--must be performed by
Great Britain and her colonies--an undertaking that will open a mine of
wealth to all concerned[see Note 7] (not the wealth of gold, but of
commerce and trade). But to proceed--and here again I must tax your
memory. You will, no doubt, recollect, that after the King of Holland
had given his decision in the year 1831 as to our disputed boundary with
America, which had been referred to him, and that all eyes were fixed
upon that question,[see Note 65] which had become very serious and
difficult to settle, his Grace the Duke of Wellington, in speaking on
the subject,[see Note 8] alluded to another very important boundary
question (then little thought of by the public),[see Note 9] and his
Grace pointed to the Oregon.[see Note 33] The discussions and
difficulties that afterwards arose before the final disposal of that
dispute, most assuredly marked its importance, and proved that the
ever-watchful talent of the Duke had not been attracted to that spot,
without cause.

                   "We thank the gods
      Our Rome has such a soldier!"

Montgomery Martin says, "But for the Hudson's Bay Company, England would
probably have been shut out from the Pacific." Be that as it may, we had
at all events, one statesman's watchful eye upon that ocean, and the
very important question is now disposed of for ever, leaving open to
England another most valuable high road, with the making of which we
(again like the fly on the wheel) think we must have something to do; at
all events, we may discuss and talk about it,--as in the Tyrian we
formerly did about the great Steam Line from and to Liverpool and
Halifax. But to proceed seriously. Did his Grace, let it be asked, when
pointing to our North-Western boundary line, look forward at that time
to the shores of the Pacific as being "the end of the West and the
beginning of the East?" Did his Grace's imagination picture to his
mind's eye swarms of human beings from Halifax, from New Brunswick, from
Quebec, from Montreal, from Byetown, from Kingston, from Toronto, from
Hamilton, the Red River Settlement, &c. &c. &c., rushing across the
rocky mountains of Oregon with the produce of the West in exchange for
the riches of the East? Did his Grace imagine the Pacific Ocean alive
with all descriptions of vessels sailing and steaming from our
magnificent Colonies--New Zealand, Van Diemen's Land, New South Wales,
New Holland, from Borneo and the West Coast of China, from the Sandwich
Islands, and a thousand other places, all carrying the rich productions
of the East, and landing them at the commencement of the West,--to be
forwarded and distributed throughout our North American provinces, and
to be delivered in THIRTY DAYS at the ports of Great Britain? Did his
Grace foresee that steam would bring Halifax within ten days of
Liverpool? That a Railway would make Halifax only ten or fifteen days
distant from the north-west coast of North America, (and that the
Sandwich Islands would not be ten days further off?) whence steamers
might be despatched with the mails from England for Pekin, Canton,
Australia, New Zealand, &c. &c. &c.; and did his Grace look forward to
the rolling masses of treasure that would be sure to travel on such a
girdle line of communication as that? Did his Grace then weigh and
consider that "to the inventive genius of her sons England owes the
foundation of her commercial greatness. We will not go the length of
asserting that she retains her proud pre-eminence solely upon the
condition of keeping twenty years ahead of other nations in the practice
of mechanical arts. But there is no question, that _a fearful proportion
of our fellow subjects hold their prosperity upon no other tenure_, and
quite independently of what may be done by our rivals it is of vast
importance to our increasing population that the conquest over nature
should proceed unchecked?" [_Quarterly Review, December, 1848._] And did
his Grace look forward and foresee that between the north-eastern and
north-western shores of America, and through our loyal, long-tried and
devoted North American colonies,[see Note 10] there might be undertaken
a great, a noble, and a most important work, that would give
remunerative employment to the population, to the wealth, and to the
inventive genius of England? Did his Grace, in short, look forward to a
_grand National Railway from the Atlantic to the Pacific_?[see Note 60]
If not, let his Grace do so now! Let the people of Great Britain do
so!--let her colonial minister. Startling as it may at first appear, a
little reflection will show that England and her children have the power
to make it; that it must be done; and will become valuable property--for
it would increase our commerce and trade to an extent not easy to
calculate.[see Note 11] But such a noble work must not be looked upon
merely as a money question,--although if only considered in that
light,--England must reflect that if she wishes and intends to retain
her high pre-eminence amongst the nations of the earth, she must most
assuredly pay for it. No country can have all the blessings and
advantages of England and have them for nothing, nor can she retain them
without great exertion. Her accumulated wealth cannot be allowed to
remain idle--nor will it.[see Note 12] No one will deny for a moment
that every economy that will make the poor man richer and happier ought
to be practised;[see Note 39] but let us take care that we do not, from
too strong a desire to retain that wealth which Providence has thrown
into the lap of England[see Note 13] even in the midst of war,[see Note
14] deprive her labouring children of legitimate employment and just
remuneration, (all that the industrious classes of our fellow-countrymen
require.) But the undertaking proposed has even a higher claim to our
attention. _It is the great link required to unite in one powerful chain
the whole English race_. Let then our Railway Kings, and our Iron
Kings, our princely merchants, and our lords millionnaires--let the
stirring and active spirits of the age--the great reformers and the
modern politicians, many of whom are now proclaiming through the land
that economy alone can save the country--[see Note 15]condescend for a
short time even, to consider the undertaking here proposed; and say, if
they can, that (even should it be executed at an immense expense) it
would not produce a great and beneficial forward movement, and be a
present happy employment, and a future perpetual source of wealth to
England and her children. Let them consider also that "the social
advancement which the modern improvement of Railways is calculated to
effect has added a new faculty to man in the facilities which it affords
of communication between province and province, and between nation and
nation. Nor does it seem too much to say, that it will be the means of
binding all the nations of the earth into one family, with mutual
interests, and with the mutual desire of promoting the prosperity of
their neighbours, in order that they may enhance their own, and forming
thereby the most powerful antagonistic principle to war that the earth
has ever known." [_Bradshaw's Almanack, 1849._] Again, what says the
Quarterly: "We trust our readers of all politics will cordially join
with us in a desire, not inappropriate at the commencement of a new
year, that the wonderful discovery which it has pleased the Almighty to
impart to us, instead of becoming amongst us a subject of angry dispute,
may in every region of the globe bring the human family into friendly
communication; that it may dispel national prejudices; assuage
animosities--in short, that, by creating a feeling of universal
gratitude to the powers from which it has proceeded, it may produce on
earth peace and good-will towards men." And where, let it be asked, can
this wonderful discovery, this great power of steam,[see Note 16] be
called into action so effectually and so usefully, not only for Great
Britain, but for mankind in general, than in that parallel of
latitude[see Note 17] in which (_all barrier difficulties and all cause
for war being now removed_) would naturally flow in full tide the
civilization, arts and sciences that invariably follow in the wake of
Englishmen? Then as to the difficulties of the undertaking, let us
recollect that an eminent engineer, previous to the construction of the
Liverpool and Manchester Line, said, "No man in his senses would attempt
a Railroad over Chat Moss:" his calculation was that it would cost
£270,000. Yet the genius of George Stephenson afterwards surmounted the
difficulty at a cost of £40,000, though the work was commenced when
engineering science was less understood than now. Let us also listen to
the Quarterly, "Steam as applied to locomotion by sea and land is the
great wonder-worker of the age. For many years we have been so startled
by such a succession of apparent miracles, we have so often seen results
which surpassed and falsified all the deductions of sober calculations,
and so brief an interval has elapsed between the day when certain
performances were classed by men of science as among impossibilities,
and that wherein those same performances had almost ceased to be
remarkable from their frequency, that we might almost be excused if we
regarded the cloud-compelling demon, with somewhat of the reverence
which the savage pays to his superior, when he worships as omnipotent
any power whose limits he cannot himself perceive." With such a
power[see Note 18] (so eloquently described) at our command, and such
magnificent results to be obtained from it, shall England hesitate?
shall the expenditure of a few millions check such a noble work? shall
the Rocky Mountains be a barrier? mountains never yet properly explored,
and of which almost all we know is that (as my friend Colonel Bloomfield
observed) we nearly went to war to be allowed to cross them. And what
are the expenses of war? Between the years 1797 and 1815, 630 millions
of money were expended for carrying on war. Again, the very magnitude of
the undertaking and length of the Railway is in its favour, for--listen
again to the Quarterly: "We believe it may be affirmed without fear of
contradiction, that the working details of a Railway are invariably well
executed in proportion to their magnitude. A little Railway--like a
little war--is murderous to those engaged and ruinous to those who pay
for it." Now if in England experience has taught all this,--shall the
good people of Halifax, New Brunswick, Quebec, Montreal, Toronto, &c.,
be allowed, perhaps encouraged, to go on slowly endeavouring (at an
immense expense and outlay for such young communities) to make a variety
of small Railways,[see Note 40] thus acknowledged to be ruinous, and the
mother country remain quietly looking on when she has now the power of
greatly assisting them, and to her own advantage, by planning and
arranging one grand route and system of Lines throughout the whole
country,[see Note 19] and under Providence the means of opening that
route in an incredible short space of time? Let then England, her North
American colonies, and the Hudson's Bay Company, join heart and hand,
and with the great power of steam which it has pleased the Almighty to
place at the command of man, there will soon arise a work that will
be the wonder and admiration of the age--and such a mercantile and
colonizing road will be open to Great Britain, that at no future period,
(at least within the imagination of man,) will she ever again have to
complain of too great a population on her soil, and too small a market
for her labour.

Let us now then proceed, my dear friend, to consider how this great
work might be commenced, and its probable results when accomplished. In
the first place let us look a little to the immense annual cost to
England for her prisons and her convicts,[see Notes 47 and 50]--much of
that crime arising probably from the want of employment, and consequent
poverty.[see Note 20] Even at this moment five millions are spoken of as
a sum required to be expended in new prisons for a favourite system.[see
Note 41] In 1836 it was suggested "as well worthy of consideration,
whether it would not be advisable to cease transporting convicts at so
great a cost to distant settlements, and instead to send them to a
nearer place of exile, where their labour might be rendered in so great
a degree valuable, as speedily to return to the Mother Country the whole
of the charge incurred for their conveyance" [_The Progress of the
Nation, by A. R. Porter, Esq._];[see Note 21] and where could England
better employ her convict labour, than on a work that would be of such
vast and lasting importance to herself, to her colonies, and to mankind
in general? It was also observed, by the same author, "If gangs of
convict labourers were placed a little beyond the verge of civilization,
and employed in clearing and enclosing lands, constructing roads,
building bridges, the land thus prepared and improved would meet with
ready purchasers at prices which would well repay the Government their
previous outlay." It may be objected by some, that the expense of the
troops necessary to guard the convicts would be very great, and would be
a heavy burden to this country. To them I must use the words of the
"Times," when suggesting the grant of colonial lands to be annexed to
the performance of military duties. "Subsidiary to and connected with
this arrangement might be devised another, by which soldiers of good
character might be discharged after ten years service, and rewarded with
small freeholds in the colonies. They might be bound to appear on duty
at certain periods, and for a certain duration of time, as our
pensioners are at present." And if soldiers of six or eight years
service were sent out in charge of the convicts, that unpleasant duty
would be of very short duration before they would meet with their
reward. Added to which, it has been suggested by my friend Captain Wood,
of the Hon. East India Company's service, that the Indians might be very
usefully employed on this duty,[see Note 48] somewhat in the same manner
as the natives in India are encouraged to look after European soldiers
who desert their colours. In alluding to the pensioners of Great
Britain, it is only due to Lieut.-Col. Tulloch to render our honest
thanks to him, for the introduction through his indefatigable exertions
of this most important feature in a new military system. Not only has he
added to the respectability, comfort, and happiness of many a worn out
old soldier, but he has also provided a very imposing force of veterans
ready at any moment to support the laws of their country; and, should
unfortunately such an occasion ever arise, of opposing all feeling of
disloyalty to their beloved sovereign.[see Note 42] Lieut.-Col. Tulloch
may well feel proud of the result of his labours. This system of
pensions alluded to by the "Times" would become extremely applicable to
the troops employed in guarding the convicts on the proposed Atlantic
and Pacific Railway, and small villages, and ultimately cities, would,
no doubt, arise from such a source: but even the first outlay caused by
the employment of the convicts on such a work cannot be considered as
any extra expense to government; for these convicts must be fed, must be
employed, and must be guarded somewhere: and it will be shown hereafter
that government will be reimbursed not only her expenditure on account
of the convicts, but also her expenditure on account of the troops
required to guard them. In making his suggestions for the employment of
the convicts in 1836, Mr. Porter says, "There is unhappily but too much
reason for believing that the whole number of labourers who could be
thus profitably employed might be furnished from the criminal population
of Great Britain." And by a return given at the same time, it is shown
that the number of convicts from 1825 to 1833, both years inclusive, was
22,138, and that return did not include all the penal settlements. The
"Times" of the 18th January, 1848, in speaking of the expenditure of the
country, says, "Convicts at home and abroad have mounted from £111,306
to £378,000; certainly the law of increase is strongly marked on the
expense of crime." "If any body will cut down this figure, he will earn
the gratitude of the nation." This last expression of the Times has more
particular reference to the expense incurred for Ireland, but will no
doubt be acknowledged to be equally true as bearing upon the enormous
general increase of convict expenditure; and the more I reflect on this
subject, the more do I feel convinced that the employment of convict
labour in the Rocky Mountains,[see Note 22] and at several other points
of the Line of this proposed great National work, would produce a most
beneficial result, as a means of reducing the amount of crime, as even
an immediate saving of transport expense to England (unless indeed all
distant penal settlements are to be finally abandoned),[see Notes 21 and
45] and as an ultimate great advantage both to her own commerce, and to
that of her colonies; and here let it be recollected, that there is a
feeling abroad "to force upon government and the legislature a bold and
manly course in dealing with crime in general:" that the magnificent
prisons now built are considered "unjust to the labouring poor, whose
humble dwelling, with coarse and scanty food, is mocked by the grandeur
and beauty of the prison, as well as by the idle and comfortable
entertainment within its wall;" and it has been remarked by a public
journal in a warning voice, "to make prisons palaces is the way to turn
palaces into prisons."[see Note 34] But enough has been said on this
subject at present, and we will now consider again the working out of
this great undertaking. We will suppose, in the first place, active,
intelligent, and scientific young men to be sent to the Rocky
Mountains,[see Note 49] to ascertain the best spot at which to cross
them, and the best port (if the mouth of Frazer's River will not
answer), on the western shore of North America, within, of course, the
Hudson's Bay Company's territory, for a great commercial harbour and
railway terminus. Then let a grand line of Railway be marked out from
Halifax to that spot, and let all local towns or districts that have
sufficient capital and labour to undertake any part of that Line, have
the benefit of the profits of the whole Line, in proportion to the parts
they may finish. No convict labour need interfere with them. But in such
districts as are at present so thinly inhabited as to have no working
population, and no capital to expend, let the work be commenced by
England, by her capital, and her convicts;[see Note 23] and let
government encourage and facilitate the formation of a great Atlantic
and Pacific Railway Company, by obtaining from parliament a national
guarantee for the completion of the work;[see Note 51] first, of course,
having entered into arrangements with the Hudson's Bay Company, and her
North American provinces, for the security of such sums of money as may
be advanced by way of loan from Great Britain.

To Englishmen we would say then, in the words of the Rev. C. G.
Nicolay, "We have at home a superabundant population,[see Note 24]
subject to a very rapid increase on any reduction of the price, if but
of the necessaries of life,--how can it be better employed than in
seeking, with its own advance in social position, and means of
acquiring its comforts, if not its luxuries, the spread of our free
institutions--equal laws--and holy religion. We desire an enlarged
sphere for commercial enterprise. New markets for our manufactures;
these every fresh colony supplies in its measure. If then the Oregon be
what it appears to be, if its climate, soil, agriculture, and commercial
capabilities be as represented, why leave its future destiny to time and
circumstances?" We would say to the Hudson's Bay Company in the words
of Mr. James Edward Fitzgerald, "You have the power of becoming the
founders of a New State, perhaps of a new empire, or of arresting for a
time, for you cannot ultimately prevent, the march of mankind in their
career of victory over the desolate and uncultivated parts of the earth.
For now nearly two centuries your sway has extended over half a
continent, and as yet you have left nothing behind you in all that vast
country, to bear witness to your power and your riches. Now a new
destiny is before you; you may, if you will, place your names beside
those who have devoted themselves to the noble task of stimulating and
directing the enterprising genius of their fellow countrymen, who have
prolonged the existence of their nation by giving a new life to its
offspring." And we would then call upon England, her North American
provinces, and the Hudson's Bay Company, to employ their wealth and
power to unite in one great unbroken iron chain, the Mother Country with
her distant Children, and, in spite of Nature's difficulties, carry
steam across the Rocky Mountains.[see Note 25]

From childhood I have been accustomed to look upon the power of
England as irresistible,--morally, physically,[see Note 35] and
intellectually,--she has now in this age the command of mind and matter
sufficient to enable her almost to move the earth, and shall the tunnel
under the Thames, the tube over the Conway, and the bridge over the
Menai, be our only wonders? How well do I remember the delight with
which I have listened to the anecdote told of Mr. Pitt, who, when he was
informed that it was impracticable to carry into effect some orders he
had given about heavy ordnance being sent to Portsmouth within a certain
time, "Not possible?" exclaimed Mr. Pitt, "then send them by the
Mail."[see Note 26] With the same feeling of pride and delight have I
heard in later days of the artillery officer's remark, when it was
whispered to him by another that it would not be possible to place their
guns in some wished for position; "My dear fellow," said the commanding
officer, "I have the order in my pocket." Let England only commence the
Railway from Halifax to the Pacific, with the order to cross the Rocky
Mountains in the pocket of her sons, and the accomplishment of the
undertaking will soon reward the labour, courage and skill which would
undoubtedly be exhibited. Sir Alexander Mackenzie inscribed in large
characters, with vermillion, this brief memorial, on the rocks of the
Pacific, "Alexander Mackenzie from Canada by land the 22nd of July,
1794." Who will be the first engineer to inscribe upon the Rocky
Mountains "On this day engineer A. B. piloted the first locomotive
engine across the Rocky Mountains;" and what then will be the feeling of
Englishmen, when even now Steam is considered the "exclusive offspring
of British genius, fostered and sustained by British enterprise and
British capital!" We have seen that on the highest habitable spot of the
Mountains of the Alps stands a monument of war, placed there by the hand
of a powerful man in the pride of victory over his fellow-men, and in
honour of his companion in arms. We trust before long that on the
highest habitable spot of the Rocky Mountains will stand a monument of
peace, placed there by an enterprising nation in honour of the victory
of science over nature, and in memory of some enterprising son.

After all her wars, her victories and her revolutions, in what condition
is France?

What may not England expect to be with all her victories over
nature--her trade and commerce?[see Note 52] May she march forward in
her career of peace as bravely, as nobly, and as proudly as she did in
that of war; and may she now take as great an interest in, and make
the same exertions for, the welfare and happiness not only of her own
people, but of those of other nations in all quarters of the globe, as
she did in former days for their protection from a desolating foe.

What the ultimate consequences of such a link of connection would be,
are indeed far beyond the reach of the human mind to foresee; but its
immediate results stand out apparently to the most common observer. In
the first place, Cape Horn (_the roughest point to weather in the whole
world_) would be avoided. In the next, the long passage by the Cape of
Good Hope to innumerable places in the Pacific Ocean would become also
unnecessary. In both these cases a great amount of time (which in
commerce is money) would be saved. Again, it would be no longer
necessary to send goods by the route of the Hudson's Bay[see Note 27] to
the territories of that Company; and thus _a climate horrible in winter
and summer_, would also be avoided.[see Note 44] Then one view of the
map of the world will show that the proposed terminus of the Atlantic
and Pacific Railway at Frazer's River, taken as a centre, would bring
New Zealand, New South Wales, in fact, Australia, New Guinea, Borneo,
Canton, Pekin, all within fifty days' sail of that point; and taking the
Sandwich Islands as a centre point, (where there is a fine harbour, and
where a depôt of coals might be established), which could be reached in
ten days, all the before-named places would be brought within twenty
days for steam navigation, other points, such as the Friendly Islands,
&c., might be selected for further depôts of coals. Again, from the
terminus of the proposed railway the mails from England could be
despatched to all the before-mentioned places, and the formation of a
great steam navigation company, with a grant from government in the same
way as a grant was made to the Atlantic Steam Navigation Company to
Halifax, would insure magnificent steamers for the conveyance of these
mails, and would secure also to the Hudson's Bay Company an immense
consumption of their coal. Last, though not least of all, this Railway
route across the continent of North America would ensure to England at
all times a free communication with her East India possessions. It is
true that at present there is no difficulty in that respect, and the
indefatigable exertions of Lieutenant Waghorn and of other enterprising
people, amongst them my friend Major Head, have opened to the British
public and to the East India Company a quick and speedy communication
with India. But let the public reflect, and let the Government reflect,
that, in the event of a European war, we might be called upon to defend
and keep open that communication at an immense expenditure of life and
money, and indeed it might even be closed against us; whereas the
proposed Line across the continent of America would be within our own
dominions, and would not oblige us to interfere or meddle with any
continental wars to enjoy its free use. No time ought to be lost in the
commencement of this national undertaking.

If then Government took the initiative, it might obtain the consent of
Parliament, and proceed to appoint a Board of General Arrangement and
Control, consisting, say, of fifteen Commissioners: three on the part of
Great Britain, three to be named by the Hudson's Bay Company, three to
be appointed by the Government of Nova Scotia, three by that of New
Brunswick, and three on the part of Canada; all these latter of course
with the approval of their respective Governors. It may appear that
the North American Provinces would thus have a greater proportion
of Commissioners; but as each of these Colonies have Governments
independent of each other, they may be considered as separate Companies,
although we take them as one when considered as the North American
Provinces. These fifteen gentlemen might be all Members of Parliament;
thus the system of representatives from the Colonies, so often suggested
and spoken of, could be commenced, and the Colonists thus made
practically aware that they are _an integral part of this country_.
These Commissioners could be authorized to make all the necessary
arrangements for the security of the monies proposed to be advanced by
the Government of Great Britain, and should be instructed to draw up the
general Articles of Agreement between the high contracting parties; and
Government might be authorized by Parliament to open an account with
these Commissioners, who as a Body might be called "The Atlantic and
Pacific Railway Board of Control," and under its auspices a public
Company might be formed, refunding to the Government all previous

Our North American provinces are close at hand, and during the
approaching summer all the necessary arrangements might be made for the
reception of a great number of convicts in different locations; and, in
the first instance, they might be sent to Halifax and Quebec,[see Note
53] where they could be received immediately, not certainly in palaces,
but in very good wood huts; at both these places they could also be at
once set to work in unloading the vessels sent from England with the
necessary stores for the commencement of this great national work, and
in preparing and levelling the situations of the respective termini; for
of course at both these stations great government as well as private
wharfs would be established. Again: another portion could be sent at
once from New South Wales to the port fixed upon on the north-west coast
of North America, in the Hudson's Bay Company's territory:[see Note 67]
there they could be put to work in the same way--to unload vessels
bringing in stores, to cut down and prepare timber, level and get ready
the site of the terminus. And it appears very necessary that preparation
should be made for the reception of a large body at the Red River
Settlement, that point being a very important spot in the Line proposed.
Let us see what Montgomery Martin says about it.[see Note 28]

The Bishop of Montreal, in 1844, says, "The soil, which is alluvial, is
beyond example rich and productive, and withal so easily worked, that,
although it does not quite come up to the description of the Happy
Islands--reddit ubi cererem tellus inarata quot annis--there is an
instance, I was assured, of a farm in which the owner, with
comparatively light labour in the preparatory processes, had taken a
wheat crop out of the same land for eighteen successive years, never
changing the crop, never manuring the land, and never suffering it to
lie fallow, and that the crop was abundant to the last; and, with
respect to the pasture and hay, they are to be had ad libitum, as nature
gives them in the open plains." Again, speaking of import goods: "All
these articles are brought across from Hudson's Bay, a distance of
several hundred miles, in boats, and these boats are drawn across the
portages on rollers, or in some places carried upon waggons; hence those
articles which are of a heavy description are charged at a price
seemingly out of all proportion to that of many others which may be
obtained at a moderate price: a common grindstone is sold for
20_s_."[see Note 29]

Now read again the description of Hudson's Bay, discovered by John
Hudson in 1610,[see Note 27] then look upon that picture, and upon
this; look upon that country that will give eighteen successive crops of
wheat, and look upon the difficult, dangerous, and tedious navigation of
that bay, whose _climate in summer and winter is horrible_, and through
whose waters the stores of this fine country are obliged to travel;
look at that picture, then look at this,--the easy, safe, and rapid
communication of a Railway,--and say if the time, health and money that
would be saved by its construction is not worthy the consideration of
Englishmen, and would not repay the constructors, even if that was to be
its last terminus.[see Note 54]

But when it is considered that the Main Line of Railway, in passing
through our own colonies, would skirt the shores of Lake Superior--rich
in mines of silver and copper[see Note 36]--and that the Red River
Settlement[see Note 30] would only be one of the many valuable towns and
districts that would be opened to trade and commerce, and only
contribute its mite to the profits to be obtained from the passage of
the Rocky Mountains to the Pacific, it appears to me impossible that
such a powerful and wealthy Company as the Hudson's Bay, such
magnificent colonies as our North American provinces, and such a power
as Great Britain, can balance for one moment in their minds whether loss
or profit must attend the undertaking and completion of such a Railway.

But, vires acquirit eundo, our argument is stronger as we proceed; for,
crossing the Rocky Mountains, where the real terminus would be, let us
pause for a moment to consider the mine of wealth we should open--not
the wealth of gold and silver--but wealth, the reward of commerce and

"The land," Nicolay says, "affords, even now, exports of cattle, wool,
hides, and tallow, as well as salted meat, beef, pork, wheat, barley,
Indian corn, apples, and timber. Of these all are sent to the Sandwich
Islands, some to California, and hides and wool have been sent to
England. The woods of the Oregon present another fertile source of
national wealth. The growth of timber of all sorts in the neighbourhood
of the harbours in the De-fuca Strait adds much to their value as a
naval and commercial station. Coal is found in the whole western
district, but principally shows itself above the surface on north part
of Vancouver's Island. To these sources of commercial and national
wealth must be added the minerals--iron, lead, tin, &c. The mountains
and seacoast produce granite, slate, sandstone,--and in the interior
oolites; limestone is plentiful, and to the north most easily worked
and very rich in colour."

Again: look to the whale fishery.[see Note 31] And, in conclusion, we
may say that the Hudson's Bay Company's territory in the Pacific, that
is, New Caledonia, "will be found to fall short of but a few countries,
either in salubrity of climate, fertility of soil, and consequent
luxuriance of vegetation, and utility of production, of in the
picturesque character of the scenery."

But, my dear friend, I have been led on by my excitement on this subject
to make quotations and enter into particulars and details far beyond my
original thoughts, which were chiefly to draw the attention of your
powerful and active mind to a great national undertaking, knowing well
your love of everything English, and at the same time your devoted
attachment to the North American colonies. You have travelled far, and
seen much, and have shown in your works how clearly you have observed
and appreciated the power and manly spirit of England;

      "Dear for her reputation through the world;"

and although you have felt, as a colonist, that her provinces of North
America might have been better governed, and that they have had even
much justly to complain about, still you have always upheld the
connection with England, and argued its value. In writing to you, the
thoughts of old times have returned, and reminded me of our happy
meetings and friendly converse in your lodgings in Piccadilly; and, thus
thinking, I have written on, as in fancy I have imagined we should have
chatted together,--and now I cannot do otherwise than continue in this
freedom of communication, and endeavour to excite you to entertain my
thoughts, and to canvass them among your fellow-countrymen.

To return, then, to our subject, and to the necessity for England to be
up and stirring. It has been remarked, that "a person who is already
thriving seldom puts himself out of his way to commence even a lucrative
improvement, unless urged by the additional motive of fear lest some
rival should supplant him by getting possession of it before him."
Truly, indeed, has it been said by the Spectator, "that England is not
bankrupt, nor poor, nor needy. In every quarter we see immense additions
to material wealth; we observe, too, on all hands a vast extension of
luxurious enjoyments among the middle classes; every thing attests a
huge growth in the wealth of the nation." It may be fairly considered,
then, that England is thriving--a lucrative improvement of vast
magnitude is open to her--and if the additional motive of fear of
rivalry is necessary to excite her in so noble an undertaking, let her
reflect on what is said in an American paper:--

A Boston paper of the day says, "the finding of these gold mines is of
more importance than any previous event for 300 years. The prosperity
of Queen Elizabeth's reign was mainly owing to the stimulus given to
commerce by the increase of the precious metals; but the field now to be
acted upon is at least fifty times greater than during that period.
Within five years there will be a Railroad from the Atlantic Ocean,
across the great American Continent, through the gold regions, to the
Bay of San Francisco, said to be the finest harbour in the world. The
people of San Francisco will then communicate by telegraph in a few
minutes, and the mails will be taken to Canton on the one side in
fourteen days, and to London on the other in nine days; so that
intelligence may be conveyed from the one end to the other in the short
period of twenty-three days. This will be witnessed under five years."

It is evident, then, that the people of the United States are quite
aware of all the advantages to be gained by a quick communication across
the Continent of America. Let us consider now, for a moment, what the
consequences of a railway would be as regards your own valuable and
fertile colonies.[see Note 43]

You have no doubt already pictured to yourself the town of Halifax alive
with all the bustle and excitement of a great commercial community, and
her noble harbours full of every description of vessels, from the
magnificent English steamer to the small colonial coasting craft; for
soon, not merely one steamer a week, as now, would touch from England on
her way to New York, but Nova Scotia herself, from the increasing wealth
and importance of her towns, would require the use of many steamers to
enable her to carry on the numerous commercial duties that would fall to
her lot; and when we reflect that at Halifax would rest the terminus,
whence could be embarked for England at all seasons of the year our
highly valuable colonial produce, including the rich exports from the
Southern Pacific Ocean (not sent round Cape Horn or the Cape of Good
Hope); and when we reflect that this long neglected seaport town could
equally receive at all seasons of the year the various exports from
England, for her numerous Colonies; and when we consider that there is
abundance of coal at hand, with wood and stone for building, who can
hesitate for a moment to acknowledge that Halifax would soon become one
of the most important ports, and one of the most noble cities of the
world; add to this, that the connection and attachment of Nova Scotia to
England would be cemented for ever--and that the dream of the Clockmaker
would be realized. "This is the best situation in all America--is Nova
Scotia, if the British did but know it. It will have the greatest trade,
the greatest population, the most manufactures, the most wealth, of any
state this side of the water. The resources, natural advantages, and
political position of this place, beats all." Then again, look to the
city of Quebec; no sooner would the river navigation be open than
thousands of vessels from England would be seen dropping their anchors
at the foot of her proud citadel, carrying out vast cargoes of English
exports; then picture to yourself the railway terminus, alive with all
the consequent bustle, the steam up, and the railway carriages ready to
convey all these articles of commerce to every town and district in the
North American Colonies; away also to the far west, whence they would be
forwarded to our colonial possessions in the Southern Pacific, and to
numerous other places; then again, behold these ships reloading quickly
with the timber and other exportable articles from our then
firmly-linked-together valuable Colonies, sailing away for England, and
repeating their visit two or three times in the season; the difficult
navigation of the Hudson's Bay avoided; the territory of the Hudson's
Bay Company daily increasing in value, from the ease with which its
inhabitants could procure articles of commerce, before almost forbidden
to them; and Quebec, being their nearest port for embarkation for
England, would necessarily become even a much more important city than
she is at present. The land in her neighbourhood would become highly
valuable, and, as a matter of necessity, the fine country to the north,
with even better soil and better climate, would soon be opened and
peopled. I cannot cease referring to Quebec without recording my
gratitude for many kindnesses there received--particularly from the
family of Captain Boxer.[see Note 55] Then again, look to New Brunswick,
connected as it would of course be both with Halifax and Quebec, thus,
having a free and direct communication with those cities, and enabled to
export or import at any season of the year, (should she wish to avoid
the navigation of the Bay of Fundy); then think what strength she would
bring to the union of the Colonies by such a link of connection, and how
many more opportunities her inhabitants would have of encouraging and
fostering that strong attachment to their English brethren we all so
well know to exist amongst the people of New Brunswick.

But, my dear friend, I might go on this way for ever, pointing out town
after town, and district after district, showing how the wealth and
prosperity of each would go on rapidly increasing. I cannot, however,
quit the subject without a passing word on Montreal, in which city I
have passed many happy days, and from whose inhabitants I have received
much kindness and civility. That noble city has already made some
steady advances to a great capital, and the time cannot be far distant
when she will rival even the most flourishing on the North American
Continent. To her this proposed Railway would be highly important. She
has shown that she already understands the value of such things; for not
only has she a small one of her own to La-Chine, about seven miles up
the river, but she has also, I understand, finished about thirty miles
towards the Atlantic in the direction of Portland. The interest of these
Companies would not of course be lost sight of, but their profits taken
into the general calculation. The great Trunk Line of Railway would
naturally, I conclude, go through a country some distance to the north
of Montreal; but one of the most important termini must of necessity be
at that city where the business of the Government is carried on, and
where of course a general Railway Communication with every town and
district would be established. Toronto would naturally be considered in
the manner in which so loyal and devoted a city ought to be, and where
was held, even to a very late period, the parliament of a great country,
surrendered only to her sister Montreal on public considerations and for
the general good;[see Note 62] and the Main Line of Railway should be
brought as near Toronto as the communication between the Atlantic and
Pacific (its great object and principal view) would permit. Hamilton,
Kingston, Byetown and several other places must not consider themselves
neglected, if not herein specially mentioned; but in fact as regards
these Colonies, the song of your friend, the Clockmaker, about them
cannot be sung too often. "Oh Squire! if John Bull only knew the value
of these Colonies, he would be a great man, I tell you,--but he don't."
Truly do I hope that I may now sing to them with confidence,--

      "There's a good time coming yet,
                    Wait a little longer."

In your conversation with the Clockmaker you have observed, "it is
painful to think of the blunders that have been committed from time to
time in the management of our Colonies, and of the gross ignorance or
utter disregard of their interests that has been displayed in treaties
with foreign powers. Fortunately for the Mother Country, the Colonists
are warmly attached to her and her institutions, and deplore a
separation too much to agitate questions, however important, that may
have a tendency to weaken their affections by arousing their passions."
Should the Government of Great Britain, upon whose consideration will be
forced the present situation of her Colonies, consider it right to give
their support to this proposed Atlantic and Pacific Railway for the
reasons herein explained, or from any other cause,--the great benefit
that Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and the Canadas will derive from having
open to them a free and easy access to the Atlantic and the Pacific,
will, I trust, occasion such an activity of mind and such an employment
of matter, that in the general good arising therefrom, all thoughts of
former ill treatment or unkindness from the Mother Country will soon be

The great question, however, is, and will be on all sides, Where is the
money to come from?[see Note 56] and that question I am weak enough to
fancy is easily answered. Let us consider this subject a little. Let us
remember, first, that England expended 630 millions during nineteen
years in war, and, notwithstanding which expenditure, the country got
richer and richer every day;[see Note 14] and if the country is not
poorer now than it was in the years when it was able to raise the sum of
150 millions in a single year--the greater part of which it could afford
to expend in one year in war, and grow richer all the time--surely such
a country can afford to expend some few millions for the benefit of
those colonies on account of whom she was lately ready to go to war, and
on whose account she did actually expend about two millions, caused
merely by the rebellion and disturbance of a few discontented spirits.
But the money that England would be called upon to advance in the
proposed undertaking would secure to her not only the attachment of her
children in the North American provinces, by making it as well their
worldly interest, as it is their natural feeling and wish, to remain
Englishmen; but that money, and the interest of that money, could be
secured to her by proper arrangements being entered into with the
Hudson's Bay Company, and with the North American provinces, and be
ultimately reimbursed to her by the formation of the proposed Company.

Up to the present moment England has, I believe, only expended the
sum of £148,000,000 on her Railways, and, I believe, nearly 5000 miles
are finished; and on an average these Railways are said to give a return
of about four per cent., and "with the increase of the national
wealth and population, and with the increase of habits of social
inter-communication and the transit of goods, the traffic on Railways
would increase, and the profits and dividends would not be less but
greater; and in the case of some of them, no man would pretend to say
how great might be the increase of dividends from the improved and
economical modes of working Railways, which, there is every reason to
believe, will day by day be freshly discovered." [_Bradshaw's Almanack,
1849_]. And who will say that £200,000,000 expended (even should such a
sum as that be required) in making a Railway Road from the Atlantic to
the Pacific through our own territories, and therefore completely under
our own controul, would not increase by a tenfold degree the value of
that property already expended in England? When the Railways now in
contemplation at home are finished, their total length will, I believe,
be about 10,000 miles, and the expenditure between 200 and 240 millions.
The length of the Railway proposed to go through our colonies may be
spoken of roughly as at about 4000 miles; but when we take into
consideration the relative value of land in England and our colonies,
and a thousand other Railway contingencies in a highly civilized
country, creating enormous legal, legislative and other expenses, we
naturally come to the conclusion that the outlay per mile must of course
be considerably diminished in the colonies. Taking it, however, at the
English expenditure of £24,000 a mile on the average, it would only cost
£96,000,000;[see Note 32]--£5,000,000 has been estimated as sufficient
for six hundred miles of Railway from Halifax to Quebec. But calling it
£100,000,000, and supposing the work to be five years completing, that
would only be at the rate of £20,000,000 a year, the interest of which
at five per cent. would be £1,000,000. Surely, then, such a sum as that
could be easily raised, even by the Hudson's Bay Company alone, upon the
security of their extensive and valuable territory. For so great a
difference would soon arise between the value of that territory as it
is now--merely the abode of Indians and hunters--and what it would be
then; with its clearings, its improvements, its roads, its trade, its
manufactures, and its towns, that any amount of debt almost might be
incurred. But our loyal colonies would no doubt equally enter into
securities to England, and be glad, in fact, to share their chance of
the profit; for these colonies, as well as the Hudson's Bay Company,
would be immense gainers. Still it may be argued, that unless it can be
shown that England herself would be a gainer, she would not be justified
in advancing any money on such an undertaking. Let us, then, consider
this point a little. Mr. Cobden has asserted (what some of our public
journals confess to be true), "that if the revenue had fallen off, it
was because the balance sheet of the merchants and the manufacturers had
fallen off likewise." If then we show by the undertaking of such a
work as is now proposed, the balance sheets of the merchants and
manufacturers must increase immensely, we surely make out a case for
the good of the country generally, as far as revenue is concerned.

Let us then first consider, that "So interwoven and complicated are the
fibres which form the texture of the highly civilized and artificial
community in which we live, that an effect produced on any one point is
instantly transmitted to the most remote and apparently unconnected
parts of the system." And again--"The exportation of labourers and
capital from the old to the new countries, from a place where their
productive power is less to a place where it is greater, increases by
so much the aggregate produce of the labour and capital of the world."

Now, with regard to the first remark, the effect that would be produced
by the necessary exportation of all the machinery for the making and
working of this Atlantic and Pacific Railway, would of course produce,
even in England, a very great increase both to the productive power and
to the consumption of a variety of articles apparently unconnected with
the affairs of the Railway; and when, again, we look to the necessary
exportation of labourers and of capital to the towns on the Line of the
Railway where there is less productive power at work, by increasing that
dormant power we shall increase the aggregate capital of the world, and
consequently that of England. Again--"Could we suddenly double the
productive power of the country, we should double the supply of the
commodities in every market, but we should by the same stroke double
the purchasing power--every body would bring a double demand as well as
supply--every body would be able to buy twice as much, as he would have
twice as much to offer in exchange." Also--"A country which produces for
a larger market than its own, can introduce a more extended division of
labour--can make a greater use of machinery, and is more likely to
make inventions and improvements in the progress of production."
Again--"Whatever causes a greater quantity of any thing to be produced
in the same place, tends to the general increase of the productive
powers of the world." Now it surely will not be denied, that the
undertaking of this National Railway would cause in England a greater
quantity of machinery to be made and exported to the North American
provinces, thus producing for it a larger market than the home, and
causing a greater quantity to be made--thus a general increase of the
productive powers of the world must be produced; and as "wealth may be
defined as all useful or agreeable things which possess exchangeable
value," it necessarily follows that the immense increase that would
be given to the productive powers of England, to those of her North
American provinces, and of the Hudson's Bay territory, by an undertaking
on such an extensive scale, if it did not completely, would nearly
double these powers; and as whoever brings additional commodities to
market brings additional power to purchase, it follows that the
inhabitants of our North American provinces, and of the Hudson's Bay
territory, would be enabled to take nearly twice the quantity of our
manufactured goods.

Lord Stanley, in moving an amendment to the Address from the Throne,
says: "the exports of the six principal articles of British industry,
cotton, wool, linen, silk, hardware and earthenware, exhibit a
diminution as compared with 1847, of no less than four millions, and as
compared with 1846, of five millions;" such being the case, it becomes
highly important to consider the cause of this falling off, with a view
to a remedy, and some great measures must be adopted towards our own
colonies that will enable them to receive a greater quantity of
manufactured goods from the mother country,--and this great Railway is
suggested as one that would increase the productive power and population
of our North American colonies, and a consequent increasing necessity
for hardware and earthenware, to say nothing even of the other articles
of British industry, or of the facility of communicating with our other

These few remarks will suffice to show that the balance sheets of the
merchants, and consequently of the revenue of England, as well as the
capital of individuals, must increase immensely during the construction
of and at the completion of the proposed undertaking. Mr. Montgomery
Martin has stated that "Railways are the very grandest organization of
labour and capital that the world has ever seen:" that "the capital
actually invested in Railways advanced from £65,000,000 in 1843 to
£167,000,000 in 1848--no less than £100,000,000 in five years." And
why should we not look forward to an equal--aye--and to a much larger
investment--on such a magnificent Line of Railway? joining, as it would,
all the northern dominions of the old world--crossing, as it would, the
northern territories of the new, and making an easy opening to the rich
and thriving world that may be considered of the present day. For "the
word has been given, an active and enterprising population will be
poured in, every element of progress will be cultivated, and the
productive countries on the shores of the Pacific, heretofore isolated,
will be brought into active and profitable intercourse. It may truly be
said that a new world has been opened.

"Our fathers watched the progress of America, we ourselves have seen
that of Australia, but the opening of the Pacific is one of the greatest
events in social history since, in the fifteenth century, the East
Indies were made known to Europe; for we have not, as in America or
Australia, to await the slow growth of European settlements, but to
witness at once the energetic action of countries already in a high
state of advancement. The Eastern and the Western shores of the great
Ocean will now be brought together as those of the Atlantic are,
and will minister to each other's wants. A happy coincidence of
circumstances has prepared the way for these results. Everything was
ready, the word only was wanted to begin, and it has been given.

"The outflowings of Chinese emigrants and produce, which have gone
towards the East, will now move to the West; the commercial enterprise
of Australia and New Zealand has acquired a new field of exercise and
encouragement; the markets which Chili and Peru have found in Europe
only, will be opened nearer to their doors; the north-west shore of
America will obtain all the personal and material means of organization;
the Islands of the Pacific will take the place in the career of
civilization for which the labours of the missionary have prepared them;
and even Japan will not be able to withhold itself from the community of

"This is worth more to our merchants and manufacturers, and to the
people employed by them, than even the gold mines can be; for this is
the statement of certain results, and the working of the gold mines,
however productive they may prove, must be attended with all the
incidents of irregularity and uncertainty, and great commercial
disadvantages."--(_Wyld's Geographical Notes._)

Surely then there would be no difficulty with Parliament to encourage
and facilitate the formation of an Atlantic and Pacific Railway Company,
by obtaining its sanction to the loan of £150,000,000 in such sums as
might be required (to be issued under the sanction of a board appointed
for that special purpose), particularly when it is recollected that the
expense of the greater part of her own convicts could be provided for by
that advance.

It will easily be seen that it would be impossible to complete this
Atlantic and Pacific Railway, without at the same time giving great
encouragement to the emigration of labour; and this "is only practicable
when its cost is defrayed _or at least advanced by others_, than the
labourers themselves. Who then is to advance it? Naturally it may be
said, the capitalists of the colony, who require the labour, and who
intend to profit by it. But to this there is the obstacle, that a
capitalist, after going to the expense of carrying out labourers, has no
security that he shall be the person to derive any benefit from them."
To those who would object to Government interference in a case like the
present, we can only say, in the words of Mr. Mill, that "the question
of Government intervention in the work of colonization involves the
future and permanent interests of civilization itself, and far
outstretches the comparatively narrow limits of purely economical
considerations; but, even with a view to these considerations alone, the
removal of population from the overcrowded to the unoccupied parts of
the earth's surface, is one of those works of eminent social usefulness
which most require, and which at the same time will best repay, the
intervention of Government." "No individual or body of individuals
_could_ reimburse themselves for these expenses." Government, on the
contrary, _could_ take from the increasing wealth _caused by the
construction of this Railway and consequent great emigration, the
fraction which would suffice to repay with interest the money advanced_.
These remarks apply equally to the governments of the North American
provinces as to those of the Hudson's Bay Company and Great Britain.[see
Note 57]

Let us now personify our Atlantic and Pacific Railway, and endeavour
more immediately to apply some of the reasoning as regards colonization
to the money part of the question as regards the Railway. As regards
colonization the question--Who is to advance the money? has, I think,
been very clearly answered by Mr. Mill. As regards the undertaking of
this Railway, and the answer to the question, Where is the money to come
from? let us first suppose then that "there is an increase of the
quantity of money, caused by the arrival of a foreigner in a place with
a treasure of gold and silver; when he commences expending it, he adds
to the supply of money and by the same act to the demand for goods. If
he expends his funds in establishing a manufactory, he will raise the
price of labour and materials; but, at the higher prices, more money
will pass into the hands of the sellers of these different articles; and
they, whether labourers or dealers, having more money to lay out, will
create an increased demand for all things which they are accustomed to
purchase, and these accordingly will rise in price, and so on, until the
rise has reached every thing." Now let us for a moment suppose this
foreigner to be represented by our friend the Atlantic and Pacific
Railway, (imagined, for the sake of our argument, to be completed),
and we will no longer consider him a foreigner, but a brother. This
brother, on his arrival in England finds that he has unfortunately
forgotten to bring with him his purse, that in fact he has neither gold
nor silver, the representatives of wealth, and here, be it remembered,
that wealth is any thing useful or agreeable, and that money is a
commodity. We will then suppose this North American brother to say, My
good brother of England, I am here without gold or silver, or without
any kind of wealth; the commodities I have left behind me are of such a
nature, that without much labour I could not put them in such a shape as
would enable me to bring them to this country, nor could I obtain silver
or gold enough to represent them; unless, therefore, I send some
labouring people and machinery to my country, I am afraid I cannot
obtain all the commodities I wish to have. Now you have plenty of spare
labourers, and plenty of spare machinery and other useful materials, and
for which you would be glad to receive valuable commodities in my
country; and if you will only send the labourers and machinery out, I
will order that in return you shall be allowed to bring away all the
useful and agreeable things, that is, all the wealth that may be found,
and have the use of such things as you may prefer to keep in my country.
Now if you will make this agreement with me, I will return with you to
my native land, and will not only assist you to obtain all these
commodities, but I will engage also to pay you a certain annual income
out of my saving; and I will show you the short way to the most
extensive region of wealth ever known to any nation in the world; and
you can then travel that road, so that at no future period (at least
within the imagination of man) shall you ever again complain of too
great a population on your soil, or too small a market for your labour.

Then the good brother of England says to this Atlantic and Pacific
brother,--We believe all you say of your wealth, and we see the great
advantage it would be to us to partake of it, and to have the command of
the road you point out, but what security are we to have that when our
labourers and machinery are sent to your country they will be employed;
and if you have neither gold nor silver nor other commodities ready to
give us in exchange for the work and the articles, how are we to pay the
people to prepare the machinery, and all our other labourers, whose
wages would in England of course become higher, as they would be less in
number, and there would be a greater quantity of work to be done. The
brothers, in talking over this matter, discovered that "credit is
indispensable, for rendering the whole capital of the country
productive. It is also the means by which the industrial talent of the
country is turned to most account for purposes of production. Many a
person who has no capital of his own, or very little, but who has
qualifications for business, which are known and appreciated by some
person of capital, is enabled to obtain either advances of money, or
more frequently goods, on credit, by which his industrial capacities are
made instrumental in the increase of public wealth." The Pacific and
Atlantic brother observed,--This is exactly my case. Only give me
credit, and I will bind myself on my own personal security to give up
whatever portion of my annual income you may consider necessary; and I
will also secure the money advanced by you on my land, on the minerals
thereof, and in any other way that may be deemed necessary. My brother
of the Atlantic and Pacific Railway, says the Englishman, you have
nearly convinced me; we will immediately appoint friends to draw up all
the necessary agreements between us, that will enable me, if possible,
to advance you such labour and machinery as may be required; and we will
also proceed to appoint other friends, who shall take into
consideration, in the first place, the expense incurred from your birth
to a state of manhood, and the annual income that is derived from your
business and your property; and leaving you sufficient to maintain
yourself as a gentleman, we shall appropriate to ourselves whatever may
remain, as a reward for our exertions and the risk to be incurred, and
as a security for the interest of the money expended upon your account.
The brothers having thus agreed in a general way, proceed immediately to
appoint friends and to call upon their good old mother, Great Britain,
to advance the money required, and their North American relations, Nova
Scotia, New Brunswick, Canada, and Hudson's Bay, to come forward and
make a general family treaty for the security and payment of such
advances. The brothers were then congratulating themselves on what they
considered the success of their project, when it was whispered to them
that something of a similar plan had been proposed for their relation
Ireland, by one "whose loss is too great to be slighted, and too recent
not to be felt;" and it had been suggested that for every £100 expended
on Railways in that country, £200 should be lent by Government; upon
which occasion it had been observed by one who has greatly influenced,
whether for good or evil, will be hereafter known, the destinies of the
British Empire, that "the public credit of the State is one of the
elements of our financial strength, and that it was not possible to
appropriate a great portion of that public credit to the encouragement
of commercial enterprises, without, to the same extent, foregoing the
power to apply that public credit in another direction, in the event of
the national exigencies requiring you to do so." The brothers replied,
this is certainly true; but the proposed undertaking is not a commercial
enterprise, although no doubt it would produce great commercial and
colonizing results; but it is a grand national work,--a desideratum that
has been wished for, looked for, and cared for, ever since the new world
was discovered--that has repeatedly called forth great expenditure of
money, great suffering, and loss of life in searching for it, to the
north. It is, in short, the great high road between the Atlantic and
Pacific--the expense of making which you are called upon to consider.

As regards Ireland, another bold measure has been suggested for that
country; without giving any opinion upon it, I cannot help asking why we
should not be as bold in peace as we were in war. Must we wait until

      "The news is, sir, the Voices are in arms;
      _Then indeed_--we shall have means to vent
      Our musty superfluity?"

"Without raising one shilling out of the Exchequer," says Lucius (see
_Morning Post, Jan. 31st_), "boldly apply the national credit to relieve
the national distress; at once authorize the Bank of Ireland, or a bank
to be created for that purpose, to issue twenty or thirty millions in
aid of the landed proprietors; secondly, for the judicious encouragement
of emigration, transplant those who cannot earn a subsistence at home to
a comfortable settlement in our colonies, and to promote such mercantile
or other undertakings, let the notes issued be made legal tenders for
all payments whatever, and let the entire soil of Ireland be pledged for
their ultimate security." Far be it from me to give any opinion on what
is best to be done for Ireland, but certain I feel that what is here
proposed and suggested regarding an Atlantic and Pacific Railway could
not interfere with any plan Government might think right to adopt for
the regeneration of Ireland, unless indeed by greatly facilitating all
emigration plans and permanent employment.

But, independently of all this money question, "there is the strongest
obligation on the government of a country like our own, with a crowded
population and unoccupied continents under its command, to build as
it were and keep open a bridge from the mother country to those
continents." Let us reflect that "the economical advantages of commerce
are surpassed in importance by those of its effects, which are
intellectual and moral. It is hardly possible to overrate the value, for
the improvement of human beings, of things which bring them in contact
with persons dissimilar to themselves, and with modes of thought and
action unlike those with which they are familiar. Commerce is now
what war once was--the principal source of this contact. Commercial
adventurers from more advanced countries have generally been the first
civilizers of barbarians, and commerce is the purpose of the far greater
part of the communication which takes place between civilized nations.
It is commerce which is rapidly rendering war obsolete, by strengthening
and multiplying the personal interest which is in natural opposition to
it."--(_Mill, Polit. Econ._) In whatever point of view, therefore, we
regard this subject--whether as one of duty by providing the means of
healthy and legitimate employment to our numerous artificers and
labourers now in a state of destitution--a domestic calamity likely to
be often inflicted upon us--unless new fields, easy of access, are made
permanently open to our continually increasing population--and "it would
be difficult to show that it is not as much the duty of rulers to
provide, as far as they can, for the removal of a domestic calamity, as
it is to guard the people entrusted to their care from foreign
outrage"--will they "slumber till some great emergency, some dreadful
economic or other crisis, reveals the capacities of evil which the
volcanic depths of our society may now hide under but a deep crust?"--or
whether we view it as a means of assisting any general system in the
penal code--or whether we view it as a point of individual or government
interest, by turning all that extra-productive power, now idle, in the
direction of our own colonies, and thus connecting and attaching them
more strongly to the mother country--increasing their wealth, their
power and our own:--or whether we consider it in a moral and religious
point of view, as affording greater and quicker facilities for the
spread of education and the Gospel of Christ[see Note 58]--or whether we
look upon it as an instrument for the increase of commerce, and (as an
important consequence) the necessarily directing men's minds, with the
bright beams of hope from their own individual and immediate distress,
as well as from the general excitement and democratic feeling and spirit
of contention showing itself amongst many nations (an object greatly to
be desired) for--

      "The times are wild....
       ....Every minute now
      _May_ be the father of some stratagem;"

--or whether we look at it in a political point of view, as keeping
open to us at all times, without the necessity of interference with
other nations or of war, a great high road to most of our colonial
possessions, and particularly to India--viewing it then in any one of
these points, who can doubt for a moment the beneficial results that
must attend such an undertaking. But when all these considerations are
taken together, we must repeat what we said in a former page, that it
is a grand and a noble undertaking, and that it must be accomplished by
Great Britain and her colonies.

Let us reflect, lastly, my dear friend, that "the world now contains
several extensive regions, provided with various ingredients of wealth,
in a degree of abundance of which former ages had not even an idea."
Your native land, and the other North American provinces, have, even by
their own exertions, made rapid advances in wealth, accompanied by moral
and intellectual attainments, and can look forward at no very distant
period (if even left to their own exertions) to be enabled to take a
very prominent position in the affairs of the world. But the Hudson's
Bay Company's territory is still nearly in its primitive state, and much
indeed is to be expected from its advancement, when it shall have taken
its proper station in the general trade and commerce of mankind; the
position of Vancouver's Island is such that there is little reason to
doubt its wealth and consequence will place it high in the scale of
England's offspring.[see Note 59]

But, my dear friend, unless your mind has become as fully impressed as
my own with the vast importance of this great Railway undertaking, I
shall only tire you the more and detain you to no purpose by dwelling
longer on the subject; and indeed even should your mind be satisfied
with the importance of the work, it may yet conceive it to be of an
impracticable nature. "Who (I have been asked) in the living generation
would be reimbursed for the outlay? and without that, who will undertake
a national work, however grand or remunerative to future ages?" To this
I answer fearlessly, that thousands of human beings of the present
generation would benefit by the outlay; that the employment would be a
quite sufficiently lucrative one and visibly so, as to induce the
English capitalist to come forward and undertake the formation of a
Company; for even at this moment Railways are in contemplation,[see
Note 40] if not actually commenced, from Halifax to Quebec and from New
Brunswick to Halifax; and how much more would these Lines be paying
Lines when they had also an opening to the Pacific! But no individual
nor combination of individuals could have sufficient influence with, or,
if they had the influence, could have the necessary power to induce, the
Hudson's Bay Company to open its territories, and to enter into all the
arrangements and all the agreements that would be necessary to be made
with that Company, with England, and with the North American Colonies,
before a work affecting the interests of so many could be commenced.

It is necessary then that Government should take the initiative, and it
is not uncommon for her so to do in all great national works, such as
roads, surveys, expeditions either for the objects of science or
commerce; such as those sent to discover the north-west passage, upon
which thousands have been spent,[see Note 44] and on account of which,
at this very moment, England has to deplore, in all probability, the
loss of many a noble son, whose relatives have been for so long a time
kept in all the agony of suspense. Upon no other description of work
would Great Britain be required to advance a single penny; but the very
fact of her undertaking what may be considered legitimate expenses of a
government, the survey and marking out the whole Line, the entering into
treaties with her Colonies and the Hudson's Bay Company for the general
security of the money, and for the interest for a certain number of
years of the capital of the Company, would give such a confidence to the
public mind, that a very short time would bring into full operation in
that direction, sufficient of the power and wealth of England to
accomplish the work; and when accomplished, Government would still hold
a lien upon it until she was reimbursed every penny. And, let me ask,
are there not a thousand expenditures that have been undertaken by
Government for which no reimbursement has ever taken place; and are not
individuals every day risking their capital and their accumulation of
savings, in speculations in foreign lands,[see Note 61] when the result
of those past connections have been such as to lead the Minister of
Foreign Affairs, even in his place in the House of Commons, to hold out
as it were a threat to the whole world, if England's children did not
receive their due. Surely it would be more prudent, more politically
wise, and more economical, for Government to encourage the expenditure
of our own capital in our own Colonies.

Sitting in his arm chair, in his office in London, the Minister of Great
Britain can now convey his thoughts, his wishes, his commands, in a few
moments to every part of England and Scotland, and will soon be enabled
to do so to Ireland.[see Note 66] He can send the soldiers, horse and
foot, as well as the artillery of Great Britain, flying through the land
at almost any rate he wishes. And all heavy stores and goods of the
merchants can be easily forwarded at about twopence, and even, I
believe, a penny a mile per ton, and at about twenty miles an hour; and
a penny a letter now enables every individual in England to communicate,
at almost every hour, with his distant friends and relations; the post
office itself travelling at a rate and with an ease little to be
comprehended by those who have not witnessed it. The result of such
immense wealth and such enormous power is more than is required for
England, and would necessarily carry with it its own destruction, was
not her empire one which encircles the world.

Let the minister then who guides and directs the wealth and power above
described, and in whose hands the destinies and happiness of thousands
are placed, picture to himself the encouragement that would be given to
British industry and British enterprize, if, at ten days distance from
her shores, a port was established from which he would be enabled to
send across the Continent of America his thoughts, his wishes, and his
commands, with the same speed at which they now travel throughout
England; and if these thoughts, wishes and commands would reach every
one of our own Colonies in the Pacific in about fifteen days after
leaving the western shore of North America; and if from the same port
(ten days distance from England) could also be despatched the troops of
Great Britain, if unfortunately necessary, travelling at the rate before
described; if heavy stores and merchants' goods could also be enabled to
cross the Continent of America, at the same price and at the same speed
as they now travel in England; if the post office system could also be
introduced, and if letters at a penny each might pass between relation
and relation, between friend and friend from England to her most distant
Colonies--if her children gone forth to colonize could then either
return or communicate their every wish to England in less than a month;
and reclining in his own arm chair, reflecting as he ought to do and
must do upon the power and wealth of England, let him not say that all
here described is not easily within her reach. Let him rather consider
the subject with a view to become the Leader of the Country in such a
noble work. If it is a bold work, let him remember that fortune favours
the brave.--"Si secuta fuerit, quod debet Fortuna, gaudebimus omnes, sin
minus, ego tamen gaudebo."

And now, my dear friend, whose patience I have so long taxed, it is time
that we should part--

          "Whether we shall meet again I know not;
           If we do meet again--why we shall smile.
           If not, for ever and for ever farewell."

                                  Believe me,

                                      Ever your's,

                       Sincerely and faithfully attached,

                           ROBERT CARMICHAEL-SMYTH.

            _February, 1849._


The last correction for the press was scarcely finished, when "Canada
in 1848" was put into my hands. Had I, a month ago, seen that little
pamphlet, written as it is with so much spirit and ability, I should
hardly, perhaps, have felt sufficiently inclined to have suggested one
Line of Railway, in opposition to the views of its talented author. I
trust I need scarcely assure Lieut. Synge, that in any observations I
have made upon Canals, I had no reference whatever to his grand
scheme,--nor the least intention of treating lightly his magnificent
project, of which, until a day or two ago, I did not even know the
existence. I cannot now, however, let my Letter to my friend the Author
of the Clockmaker go forth to the public, without availing myself of the
opportunity thus afforded me, of bringing also to the notice of those
who read that letter "the existing resources of British North America,"
so fully and powerfully pointed out by Lieut. Millington Henry Synge, of
the Royal Engineers. Educated myself at Woolwich, and having served for
seven years in his sister corps, the Artillery, I feel proud and happy
that there are so many points upon which we can and do agree. There are
some, however, and one in particular most important, on which we are
completely at issue. Lieut. Synge says, "A ship annually arrives at Fort
York for the service of the Hudson's Bay Company; who can tell how many
may eventually do so?" Now my wish is that the one "annually" arriving
may never have again to travel that Bay, _whose climate in winter and
summer is horrible_. I shall say no more on this subject at present;
but I strongly recommend all those who have condescended to read and
reflect upon the foregoing pages, to read and reflect also upon what has
been written by Lieut. Synge. His pamphlet has afforded me the greatest
possible pleasure. The manner in which (p. 5) he speaks of the people of
the Colonies is completely in unison with my own expressed feelings; and
all the arguments that he brings forward in favour of the great work
upon which he has evidently thought so much, and in his pamphlet so
clearly explained, bear equally in favour of the suggested Railway. He
states that there is "a field open to almost an illimitable capital of
labour; that the systematic development of the resources of British
North America will, so far from being a drain upon Great Britain, be of
immediate advantage to her. That such development entails a natural,
enduring, and perfect union between Great Britain and that part of her
empire in North America. That completeness of communication, including
facility, rapidity, and security, is indeed the true secret of the
rapidity and completeness of the development of the country." These are
the thoughts of Lieut. Synge, and I think I have already explained that
they are equally mine. We have suggested different methods. Lieut. Synge
wishes to improve the old Line of water communication; and Colonization
would then be naturally confined to the banks of Rivers and of Lakes. A
great Line of Railway communication would, on the other hand, be
naturally of some distance from the River, and in many instances carried
through the heart of the country, and thus serve as another main artery,
in which would circulate the wealth of the empire, and on each side of
which would be opened valuable land, on which settlers could locate
without being lost, or disheartened by the solitude of the wilderness.
Again, Lieut. Synge asks, "Is it not wonderful that no independent mail
route exists, to give the British Provinces the benefit of the
geographical position of Halifax. Is it not wonderful that there should
be no interprovincial means of rapid communication?" Such are the
questions of Lieut. Synge--and such questions, I trust, will soon be
answered by a Colonial Minister--that a new era will soon be open for
the Colonies--new life and energy be given to them. But time presses,
and I must here conclude, with again assuring Lieut. Synge of the
sincere pleasure with which I have read his pamphlet, and that I shall
make use of such extracts as can be hastily added, in the shape of
Notes, to my own Letter to the Author of the Clockmaker:--happy shall
I be if we agree--

          "Sul campo della gloria noi pugneremo a lato:
           Frema o sorrida il fato vicino a te starò,
           La morte o la vittoria con te dividero."

                           ROBERT CARMICHAEL-SMYTH.

           _February 28, 1849._


(1) The writer of this letter, when returning from Halifax to England in
the spring of 1838, had the good fortune to take his passage in the same
government packet with the author of the Clockmaker, who was proceeding
to England with the second series of that work: and afterwards, when
paying a momentary visit to Halifax in the winter of 1844, he
experienced the high gratification of knowing, by the very kind
reception he met with, that he had not been forgotten neither, by his
Compagnons de voyage, Haliburton and Howe, nor by the other kind and
highly valued friends he had formerly made in that city.

(2) The history and particulars of this canal are well known at Halifax,
and Samuel P. Fairbanks, Esq. (Master of the Rolls at Nova Scotia)
brought to England with him in the Tyrian all the plans, maps, &c.
connected with that canal, and was, I believe, sent as a representative
of the parties connected with the work, in the hope that he might be
able to induce the government to advance sufficient money for its
completion. The fine large locks of this canal remain to tell the tale
of money sunk in an unfinished work. No encouragement certainly to canal

(3) "The distance, as I make it, from Bristol to New York Lighthouse, is
3037 miles; from Bristol to Halifax Lighthouse is 2479; from Halifax
Light to New York Light is 522 miles, in all 3001 miles; 558 miles
shorter than New York Line, and even going to New York 36 miles shorter
to stop at Halifax, than go to New York direct."--So says the Clockmaker
in 1838.

(4) "Get your legislatur' to persuade Government to contract with the
Great Western folks to carry the mail, and drop it in their way to New
York; for you got as much and as good coal to Nova Scotia as England
has, and the steam boats would have to carry a supply of 550 miles less,
and could take in a stock at Halifax for the return voyage to Europe. If
ministers won't do that, get 'em to send steam packets of their own, and
you wouldn't be no longer an everlastin' outlandish country no more as
you be now. And, more than that, you wouldn't lose all the best
emigrants and all their capital."--_Clockmaker, 1838._

(5) "The communication by steam between Nova Scotia and England will
form a new era in colonial history. It will draw closer the bonds of
affection between the two countries, afford a new and extended field
for English capital, and develope the resources of that valuable but
neglected province. Mr. Slick, with his usual vanity, claims the
honour of suggesting it, as well as the merit of having, by argument
and ridicule, reasoned and shamed the Government into its
adoption."--_Clockmaker, 1841._

(6) "In the Duke of Kent the Nova Scotians lost a kind patron and a
generous friend. The loyalty of the people, which, when all America was
revolting, remained firm and unshaken, and the numerous proofs he
received of their attachment to their king and to himself, made an
impression upon his mind that was neither effaced nor weakened by time
or distance. Should these pages happily meet the eye of a colonial
minister, who has other objects in view than the security of place and
the interest of a party, may they remind him of a duty that has never
been performed but by the illustrious individual, whose former residence
among us gave rise to these reflections. This work is designed for the
cottage, and not for the palace; and the author has not the presumption
even to hope that it can ever be honoured by the perusal of his
sovereign. Had he any ground for anticipating such a distinction for it,
he would avail himself of this opportunity of mentioning that, in
addition to the dutiful affection the Nova Scotians have always borne to
their monarch, they feel a more lively interest in, and a more devoted
attachment to, the present occupant of the throne, from the circumstance
of the long and close connexion that subsisted between them and her
illustrious parent. He was their patron, benefactor and friend. To be a
Nova Scotian was of itself a sufficient passport to his notice, and to
posses merit a sufficient guarantee for his favour. Her Majesty reigns
therefore, in this little province, in the hearts of her subjects, a
dominion of love inherited from her father."--_Clockmaker, 1841._

"It can hardly be said that England has hitherto drawn any positive
advantages from the possession of these provinces, if we place out of
view the conveniences afforded during periods of war by the harbour
of Halifax. But the negative advantage from them are evident, if we
consider that the United Slates of America are greatly deficient in good
harbours on the Atlantic coast, while Nova Scotia possesses, in addition
to the magnificent harbour of Halifax, eleven ports, between it and Cape
Canso, with sufficient depth of water for the largest ships of
war."--_Clockmaker, 1841._

(7) "The necessity which is gradually developing itself for steam fleets
in the Pacific, will open a mine of wealth to the inhabitants of the
West Coast of America."--_Rev. C. G. Nicolay, 1846._

The same author, in speaking of the principal features of the Iron Bound
Coast and Western Archipelago, in the centre of Vancouver's Island, the
Straits of Fuca and Puget's Inlet, says, "Its maritime importance is
entirely confined to the Strait of Juan de Fuca and southern extremity
of Vancouver's Island. Here are presented a series of harbours
unrivalled in quality and capacity, at least within the same limits; and
here, as has been remarked, it is evident the future emporium of the
Pacific, in West America will be found." And now that it has been
settled that this magnificent strait and its series of harbours (this
great emporium of West America) is open to that great and enterprising
nation, the people of the United States, as well as to ourselves, it
becomes most important to us that we should, and quickly, open the best
possible and shortest road to communicate with it.

"Alexander Mackenzie, who had risen to the station of a partner in that
Company, and was even among them remarkable for his energy and activity
both of body and mind, having, with others of the leading partners,
imbibed very extensive views of the commercial importance and
capabilities of Canada, and considering that the discovery of a passage
by sea from the Atlantic to the Pacific would contribute greatly to
open, and enlarge it, undertook the task of exploring the country to the
north of the extreme point occupied by the fur traders."--_Rev. C. G.

In 1794 this enterprising man ascended to the principal water of the
Mackenzie River, which he found to be a small lake situate in a deep
Snowy Valley embosomed in woody mountains; he crossed a beaten path
leading over a low ridge of land, of 817 paces in length, to another
lake, situated in a valley about a quarter of a mile wide, with
precipitous rocks on either side,--the head waters of the Frazers'
River. On the 19th of July, he arrived where the river discharges itself
into a narrow arm of the sea thus showing that a communication between
the west and east of North America was open to mankind.

(8) I regret I cannot say when exactly, nor where, his Grace gave his
opinion on this subject, and I regret this the more, because I cannot
give his Grace's exact words; but of the fact I have no doubt, and I
must only trust to your forbearance and memory when I cannot point to
the day and place.

(9) "Not long since a very general ignorance prevailed respecting the
Western Coast of North America, and no less general apathy."--_Rev. C.
G. Nicolay, 1846._

(10) "Oh, Squire! if John Bull only knew the value of these colonies, he
would be a great man, I tell you,--but he don't."--_Clockmaker, 1838._

"We ought to be sensible of the patience and good feeling which the
people of Canada have shown in the most trying circumstances."-_Mr.
Labouchere, Debate on Navigation Laws._

(11) "Considering all the natural and acquired advantages that we
possess for this purpose, it should rather create surprise and regret
that our commerce is so small, than engender pride because it is so

"We may conclude then that improvements in production and emigration of
capital to the more fertile soils and unworked mines of the uninhabited
or thinly peopled parts of the globe, do not, as it appears to a
superficial view, diminish the gross produce and the demand for labour
at home, but, on the contrary, are what we have chiefly to depend on for
the increasing both, and are even the necessary conditions of any great
or prolonged augmentations of either; nor is it any exaggeration to say,
that, within limits, the more capital a country like England expends in
these two ways, _the more she will have left_."--_J. S. Mill, Polit.

(12) For "a very large amount of capital belonging to individuals have,
of late years, sought profitable investment in other lands. It has been
computed, that the United States have, during the last five years,
absorbed in this manner more than £25,000,000 of English capital." And
how much more, it may be asked, has gone to the continent of Europe and

"When a few years have elapsed without a crisis, and no new and tempting
channel for investment has been opened in the meantime, there is always
found to have occurred, in these few years, so large an increase of
capital seeking investment, as to have lowered considerably the rate of
interest, whether indicated by the prices of securities, or by the rate
of discount on bills; and this diminution of interest tempts the
possessors to incur hazards, in hopes of a more considerable
return."--_Mill's Political Economy._

(13) The Spectator has seriously remarked--"It is sometimes observed,
that although taxes have been remitted to the amount of millions, the
revenue has kept up; and that fact is vaunted as the vindication of free
trade: but one inference to be drawn from it has escaped notice--it
shows that the riches of the country must have increased enormously, and
it implies that many of the wealthy are escaping more and more from a
due share of the general burden, as taxation is diminished and wealth

"Our exports have increased in value since 1824 from 38 millions to 68

(14) "It will be found by the Parliamentary Tables, which all can
consult, that the amount of money raised in those eighteen years was
nearly 1500 millions. The total revenue raised in those years was more
than 981 millions; and the total of the money borrowed was more than 470
millions; making, in all, 1451 millions. And it is worth while to note,
that, in one of those years, namely, in 1813, the sum of more than 150
millions was raised in revenue and loan, of which nearly 82 millions was
loan for the national use; and this in a single year; and that year
1813, in the midst of a dreadful war, and thirty-five years ago;--since
when the country has grown much richer."

"Now, dividing the sum of 1451 millions by eighteen years, it appears
that 80 millions a year was raised; and, taking the legitimate
expenditure of the country, during those eighteen years, at an average
of 45 millions a-year, a sum so high as to preclude all cavil, it
appears that the country raised and expended eighteen times the
difference between 45 and 80 millions, that is 630 millions;
notwithstanding which expenditure, let it be observed, the country _got
richer and richer_ every day."--_Bradshaw's Almanack, 1848._

(15) "Our economical friends need not be alarmed;--we are not
going to propose a large addition to the military force of the
empire."--(_Times._) No:--but before it is reduced and its system
interfered with by those who understand not its working, we would
strongly recommend the perusal, first of the evidence of Sir Herbert
Taylor before the Finance Committee on this subject, and then that of
his Grace the Duke of Wellington, and we would ask the intelligent
public of Great Britain to reflect well before it allows her present
army to be trifled with. We firmly believe our army to be in as high a
state of discipline, and as ready "to go any where and do any thing," as
it was at the moment his Grace gave up in France the active command of

As to our Navy,--let those advocates for reduction go as my friend
Captain B----r wished they would,--to the top of the monument, and look
around at the forest of masts they will see of vessels coming from and
going to all parts of the world; then reflect for a moment on the power
required to defend all their interests; and (if they dare), [see Note
(63)] then come down and ask for reduction.

We strongly recommend the perusal of the letter of Emeritus on this
subject in the _Times_ of the 5th February.

(16) "This vast power has penetrated the crust of the earth, and drawn
from beneath it boundless treasures of mineral wealth which without its
aid would have been rendered inaccessible. It has drawn up in numberless
quantity the fuel on which its own life and activity depend."--_Dr.

(17) "It seems a provision of Providence to have formed different races
to bring about, by their crossing, an improved state of things. The
Teutonic variety is undoubtedly the most vigorous and able, both in body
and mind, of all the species of the genus of man that exist, and seems
destined to conquer and civilize the world. The Teutonic variety, in its
different sub-varieties, agree best with a temperate climate; it is,
however, capable of bearing a high degree of cold, but seems to prosper
best northward of 45° of northern latitude.

"Teutonic prevailing in Great Britain and part of Ireland,
22,000,000."--_Physical Atlas of Natural Phenomena._--_Alex. Keith

And it is very curious to observe, that, in the new world, the first
colony of Great Britain we reach after crossing the Atlantic is called
Nova Scotia; and the last land we should leave after crossing the
continent would be New Caledonia; and both in Nova Scotia and New
Caledonia (Vancouver's Island) nature seems to have placed great
deposits of coal, as if she there intended the industry of man and the
advancement of science to overcome all natural barriers between the
different nations of the earth.

(18) "A pint of water may be evaporated by two ounces of coal. In its
evaporation it swells into 216 gallons of steam, with a mechanical force
sufficient to raise a weight of thirty-seven tons a foot high. The steam
thus generated has a pressure equal to the common atmospheric air; and
by allowing it to expand by virtue of its elasticity, a further
mechanical force may be obtained at least equal in amount to the former.
A pint of water, therefore, and two ounces of common coal, are thus
rendered capable of doing as much work as is equivalent to seventy-four
tons raised a foot high."

"The Menai Bridge consists of about 2000 tons of iron, and its height
above the level of the sea is 120 feet; its mass might be lifted from
the level of the water to its present position by the combustion of
four bushels of coal."--_Dr. Lardner._

(19) "In addition to the instances of combination between directly
competing companies, recent experience has furnished numerous instances
of the tendency of smaller lines, sanctioned as independent
undertakings, to resign their independence into the hands of more
powerful neighbours."--_Report of Board of Trade._ It is not to be
doubted, therefore, that all proposed or partly finished Railways in the
North American provinces will readily join in the grand undertaking,
making one great interest for the whole.

"The traffic of a system of lines, connected with one another, can
always be worked more economically and conveniently under one uniform
management than by independent Companies. The Company which works the
main trunk line, and possesses the principal terminal stations, can run
more frequent trains, and make better arrangements for forwarding the
traffic of the cross lines, than it could afford to do if two or three
separate establishments had to be maintained, and the harmony of
arrangements depended upon two or three independent authorities.

"It is found also in practice, that unless a very close unity of
interest exists among the different portions of what really constitute
one great line of communication, it is scarcely possible to introduce
that harmony and accuracy of arrangement which are essential to ensure
speed and punctuality. Many important branches of traffic also are apt
to be neglected, which can only be properly developed where a long
consecutive line of Railway is united in one common interest. Coals and
heavy goods, for instance, can be conveyed for long distances with a
profit, at rates which would be altogether insufficient to remunerate a
Company which had only a run of ten or twenty miles: and thus many of
the most important benefits of Railways to the community at large can
only be obtained by uniting through-lines in one interest."--_Report of
Board of Trade on Railways. Sess. 1845._

(20) "The two most expensive commodities in England are crime and
poverty; of these the most costly is poverty; and the extent of poverty,
by its sufferings, vastly increases the amount of crime. You have heard
the expenses of poverty. The cost of crime in England and her penal
establishments exceeds a million and a half."--_Speech of Francis Scott,
Esq. M.P._

(21) "The circumstance which must first strike any person as
extraordinary, in regard to the expatriation of criminals from this
country, is the choice of the station to which they have been sent. That
a country which, like England, is possessed of an almost boundless
tract of unsettled fertile land within four weeks' sail of her own
shores, should, in preference, send her criminals to a territory which
cannot be reached in less than as many months, thus multiplying the
expense of their conveyance, is a course which requires for its
justification some better reasons than have ever yet been brought
forward."--_A. R. Porter, Esq., Progress of the Nation._ This system
has, we believe, come to a close, and Gibraltar and other places fixed
upon; (some in Great Britain); but her convicts ought not to be employed
at home if it can be avoided, as they of course perform the work that
would be performed by the labourers of the country, many of whom are
thus thrown out of work.

Since the year 1824, a considerable establishment of convicts has been
kept up in Bermuda, employed in constructing a breakwater and in
perfecting some fortifications at Ireland's Eye. The number at present
(1836) so maintained is about 1000.

(22) And why should not English convicts be sent to work in the Rocky
Mountains? We all know that the highest peak of Great St. Bernard is
11,005 feet above the level of the sea, and is covered with perpetual
snow. Between the two main summits runs one of the principal passages
from Switzerland to Italy, _which continues open all winter_. On the
most elevated point of this passage is a monastery and hospital, founded
in the tenth century by Bernard de Monthon. The French army, under
Bonaparte, crossed this mountain with its artillery and baggage in the
year 1800; and here Bonaparte caused a monument to be erected to the
memory of General Desaix, who fell in the battle of Marengo. If, then, a
monastery and hospital have been established since the tenth century,
and are still to be found in the old world at such an elevation, and in
such a climate, what objection can there be to the establishment of a
convict post, under similar circumstances, to open an important road in
the new world? We have seen that Sir George Simpson crossed the Rocky
Mountains at a height of 8000 feet, but lower passes may yet be found.
At all events our soldiers are exposed to every diversity of climate and
every hardship; and we see no reason why healthy and powerful criminals
should be more cared for. It was also suggested in 1836--"The gangs
might be moved to other and more distant spots, and employed in similar
works of utility, and in this way would relieve emigrants from many of
the hardships and difficulties which they are now doomed to encounter at
the commencement of their settlement."--_A. R. Porter, Esq._

(23) "It would indeed be a heart-sickening prospect if, in looking
forward to the continued progress of our country, in its economical
relations, we must also contemplate the still greater multiplication of
her 'criminals'. Still we fear that, for a long time at least, we shall
have of them a large proportion, and that arrangements must be made for
their employment. What we have already stated prove that there is no
decrease as yet."

One of our periodicals observes--"We have no hope that a class of
criminals will ever cease to exist in this country, and it will always
therefore be a question, what is to be done with them?.... There are
certain conditions directly _essential_ to every successful effort for
the repression of crime; the legislature should see that the penal code,
while as merciful as a reasonable philanthropy can demand, should yet be
severe enough to be truly merciful--merciful, that is, to the entire

(24) "The flight of a quarter of a million of inhabitants of these
islands to distant quarters of the globe, in 1847, was one of the most
marvellous events in the annals of human migration. It is nevertheless a
fact, that the migration of this year is nearly equal to that of the
last."--(_The Times, 1848._)

"Nor is there any reason to believe that 1849 will witness a diminution
in the rate at which this extraordinary process of depletion is going
forward; on the contrary, there is every symptom of its probable
acceleration."--(_Morning Chronicle, 1849, on Irish Emigration._)

(25) A few extracts concerning them will be interesting. "The chain of
the Rocky Mountains, after being considerably depressed in latitude 46°
and 48°, attains a much higher elevation from latitude 48° to 49°, and,
continuing in a westerly direction, it separates the affluents of the
Saskatchewan and M'Kenkie from those of Columbia or Oregon and other
rivers which flow into the Pacific. These mountains appear to decrease
again from about 58° to 62° northern latitude, where probably they do
not exceed 4000 feet in height; and, still further north, are estimated
at less than 2000 feet, between the latitudes of 42° and 58° north.
Several peaks rise far above the snow line.

"Wherever the head waters of the rivers, on the east and west sides of
the Rocky Mountains, approach nearest each other, there have been found
passes through them. Of these, perhaps the most important is the south
pass. Between Mount Brown and Mount Hooker, in latitude 52½, another
very important pass, offering great facility of communication between
the Oregon and Canada, by the waters of the Columbia and the north
branches of the Saskatchewan, which, flowing into Lake Winnipeg, gives
easy access to Hudson's Bay and the great lakes.

"Among the most awful features of mountain scenery lies the great
northern outlet of the territory, resembling the southern in many of
its features, with even more sublimity of character, but especially in
having the sources of several great rivers within a very short distance
of each other. Here are the head waters of the Athabasca and north
tributaries of the Saskatchewan, which falls into Lake Winnipeg; and on
the east the northern waters of the Columbia, and the eastern branch of
Frazer's River, near a deep cliff in the mountains, which has been
called by British traders the Committee's Punch Bowl."--_Rev. C. G.

The first who penetrated the Rocky Mountains was Sir Alexander
Mackenzie, then in the service of the North-West Company. In the year
1793 he crossed them in about latitude 54°, discovered Frazer's
River,[A] descended it for about 250 miles, then struck off in a
westerly direction, and reached the Pacific in latitude 52° 20'. In 1808
Mr. Frazer, also under the orders of the North-Western Company, crossed
the Rocky Mountains and established a trading post on Frazer's River,
about latitude 54°; and in 1811 Mr. Thompson, also an agent of that
company, discovered the northern head waters of the Columbia, about
latitude 52°, and erected some huts on its banks.

  [A] Frazer's River has its embouche six miles to the north
  of the 49th parallel, which defines the United States boundary. It is
  a mile wide. The country around is low, with a rich alluvial soil.

  Fort Langley is twenty miles from its mouth.

  Sir George Simpson made a journey of 2000 miles in forty-seven days,
  from the Red River, viâ Fort Edrington, to Fort Columbia, in 1841; he
  crossed the Rocky Mountains, at the confluence of two of the sources
  of Saskatchewan and Columbia, at an elevation of 8000 feet above the
  level of the sea.

(26) Little, perhaps, did Mr. Pitt suspect the time was to be so near,
when that country he had loved so well and served so nobly, would be
able to send any quantity of artillery by the mail; and that not eight
or ten hours would be required, but hardly three. Would that he was
amongst us now. What could England not hope for, or expect to see
realized, in her advanced condition, if directed by such a mind as his.

(27) "It is about 900 miles in length by 600 at its greatest breadth,
with a surrounding coast of 3000 miles, between the parallels of 61° and
65° north latitude. The coasts are generally high, rocky, rugged and
sometimes precipitous. The bay is navigable for a few months in summer,
but for the greater part of the remainder of the year is filled up with
fields of ice. The navigation, when open, is extremely dangerous, as it
contains many shoals, rocks, sandbanks and islands; even during the
summer icebergs are seen in the straits, towards which a ship is drifted
by a squall or current, rendering it very hazardous for the most skilful
seaman. The transitions of the thermometer are from 100° to 40° in two
days, and the torrents of rain are surprising. Whether in winter or
summer the climate is horrible. The range of the thermometer throughout
the year is 140 degrees. The sea is entered by Hudson's Strait, which is
about 500 miles long, with a varying breadth and with an intricate
navigation."--_Montgomery Martin, Esq._

(28) "The settlement on the Red River, distant from Montreal by the
Ottawah River about 1800 miles in lat. 50° north, lon. 97° west, is
elevated 800 feet above the level of the sea, contiguous to the border
of the Red and Asinibourn Rivers, along which the settlement extends
for fifty miles. The soil is comparatively fertile, and the climate
salubrious; but summer frosts, generated by undrained marshes, sometimes
blast the hopes of the husbandman. The Hudson's Bay Company by the
introduction, at a great expense, of rams and other stock, have improved
the breed of domestic animals, which are now abundant. Wheat, barley,
oats, maize, potatoes and hops thrive; flax and hemp are poor and
stinted. The river banks are cultivated for half a mile inland, but the
back level country remains in its natural state, and furnishes a coarse
hay for the long and severe winter which lasts from November to April,
when the Lake Winnipeg is unfrozen and the river navigation
commences--viâ Norway house entrepôt--at the north extremity of the
lake. The population is in number about 6000, consisting of Europeans,
half-breeds and Indians. The two principal churches, the Protestant and
Roman Catholic, the gaol, the Hudson's Bay Company's chief building, the
residence of the Roman Catholic bishop, and the houses of some of the
retired officers of the fur trade, are built of stone, which has to be
brought from a distance; but the houses of the settlers are built of
wood. A great abundance of English goods is imported, both by the
Hudson's Bay Company and by individuals in the company's ships, to York
factory, and disposed of in the colony at moderate prices. There are
fifteen wind and three water mills to grind the wheat and prepare the
malt for the settlers. The Hudson's Bay Company have long endeavoured,
by rewards and arguments, to excite an exportation of tallow, hides,
wool, &c. to England, but the bulky nature of the exports, the long and
dangerous navigation of the Hudson's Bay, and the habits of the
half-bred race, who form the mass of the people and generally prefer
chasing the buffalo to agriculture or regular industry, have rendered
their efforts ineffectual."--_Montgomery Martin, Esq._

(29) "It is true there is another communication viâ Montreal, but the
country in that direction is not of such a nature as to admit of
introducing the rollers or the waggons upon the portages."--_Bishop
of Montreal._

(30) Mackenzie says, "There is not perhaps a finer country in the world
for the residence of uncivilized man, than that which occupies the shore
between the Red River and Lake Superior; fish, various fowl and wild
rice are in great plenty: the fruits are, strawberries, plums, cherries,
gooseberries, &c. &c."

(31) "Of this profitable trade the citizens of the United States possess
at present all but a monopoly. Their whaling fleet consists of 675
vessels, most of them 400 tons burden, and amounting in all to 100,000
tons. The majority of them cruise in the Pacific. It requires between
15,000 and 16,000 men to man them. Their value is estimated at
25,000,000 dollars, yielding an annual return of 5,000,000 or 20 per
cent. The quantity of oil imported is about 400,000 barrels, of which
one-half is sperm. When we add to this profitable occupation for many
persons--the value of the domestic produce consumed by them--and the
benefit that is thus conferred upon both agricultural and manufacturing
interests--the importance of this branch of business will appear greatly
enhanced. The whaling fleet of England and her Colonies may be
considered as not exceeding at present 150; about twenty whales are
killed annually in the straits of Juan de Fuca--besides the whale
fishery on the banks and coast is important--cod, halibut and herring
are found in profusion, and sturgeon near the shore and mouths of the
rivers. Already the salmon fishery affords not only a supply for home
consumption, but is an article of commerce, being sent to the Sandwich
Islands. They are also supplied to the Russian settlements according to
contract. The coast swarms with amphibious animals of the seal kind,
known by the vulgar names of Sea Lion, Sea Elephant and Sea Cow--but
above all with the common seal. The traffic to be derived from these in
skins, oil, &c. could not but be lucrative."--_Rev. C. G. Nicolay._

(32) We are quite aware that the American Lines are made at a much
cheaper rate, but we are here advocating a grand permanent link of
connexion with Great Britain and all her Colonies and dominions--and
however cheaply the Line may be opened, we must not deceive ourselves,
but look to a proportional outlay to the greatness of the undertaking.
It is in its results and consequences that we look forward to the great
benefit and financial return to Great Britain and to her people, both
abroad and at home.

(33) It is curious to observe, that in 1822 the Americans themselves
fought the battle of England with Russia. The extravagant claims of
dominion over the Northern Pacific Ocean and the North-West Coast of
America, which Russia proclaimed at St. Petersburgh on the 9th
October,--"It is not permitted to any but Russian subjects to
participate in the whale or other fishery, or any branch of industry
whatever, in the islands, ports and gulfs, and in general along the
coast of the North-Western America, from Behring's Strait to 51° north
latitude"--were not passed unheeded by the British Ministry of the day,
and it was communicated to the Court of St. Petersburgh that England
could not submit to such usurpation. The result of these representations
were not imparted to the public; but when these pretensions were made
known at Washington by the Russian Minister, the American functionaries
protested against them with so much vehemence that it was likely to
endanger the amicable relations of Russia and the United States--thus
fighting the battle of England as it has since proved. In December,
1823, a treaty was entered into at Washington between Russia, the United
States and England on this subject, and the Russians retired farther
north than 55°.

The Marquis of Londonderry was Secretary of State for foreign affairs up
to August, 1822, and Mr. Canning succeeded him; and to the watchful care
of these two eminent statesmen it may be owing that Russia and the
United States did not divide the coast and territory between them.

(34) See Sir Peter Laurie's description of prisons.

(35) In spite of so large a portion of the French population being
agricultural, i.e. belonging to that calling in life which developes
muscular strength and activity--in spite of that proportion being on the
increase as compared with the rest of the inhabitants, it is proved that
the number of recruits rejected as unfit for the military service from
deficient stature, health and strength, is slowly, surely and constantly
on the increase, 40 per cent. are turned back from this cause, and yet
the required height is only 5 feet 2 inches.

(36) Several companies have, I believe, been formed for the working of
these mines, and the shares, I have heard, were one time rather high.
The ore, however, is at present sent chiefly to Boston. The opening of
the proposed Line of Railway would no doubt cause a great quantity
of it to be sent to Montreal or Quebec and there shipped for
England,--enabling the colonies, therefore, to take a greater
quantity of our manufactured goods.

Lake Superior.--"Copper abounds in various parts of the country; in
particular some large and brilliant specimens have been found in the
angle between Lake Superior and Michigan. Henry and others speak
of a rock of pure copper, from which he cut off 100 pounds
weight."--_Montgomery Martin, Esq._

(37) It is true that Montgomery Martin, in 1834, says, "and if Railroads
do not take the place of canals, I have no doubt the greater part of
Upper Canada will in a few years be intersected with canals. I recommend
the latter to the Canadians in preference to Railroads, as by their
means the country will be drained, rendered more fertile and _more_

Since that time several canals have been finished, and I have no doubt,
as the country becomes more populous, others may be undertaken for the
purposes of drainage and internal communications; but my own personal
knowledge has satisfied me that Railroads would be far more useful and
a far more ultimate benefit, for there is no doubt that the waters of
Canada have a general inclination to subside. Mr. Martin himself says,
that "the Lakes Huron, Michigan and Superior, have evidently been at one
time considerably higher than they are at the present day;" and although
Mr. Martin considers the subsidence of these waters has not been
effected by slow drainage, but by repeated destruction of barriers,
still the fact shows that the waters are subsiding.

Be this all as it may, I do not think that even Mr. Montgomery Martin
himself would suggest a communication by canals from the Atlantic to the
Pacific, as well might he recommend a man to travel by a slow heavy
coach when a light quick one could be procured; and thus we dismiss the
subject of canals.

(38) To encourage this Steam Company, who have so nobly performed their
task, Government granted, I believe, £52,000 a year.

(39) Such, for instance, as the carrying letters for a penny, and
removing such taxes as bear particularly heavy upon the poor.

(40) The Governor-General, in his opening address to the parliament of
the province of Canada on the 18th January, 1849, says--"The officers
employed in exploring the country between Quebec and Halifax, with the
view of discovering the best line for a Railway to connect these two
points, have presented a report which contains much valuable
information, and sets forth in a strong light the advantages of the
proposed undertaking. I shall lay it before you, together with a
dispatch from the Secretary of State for the Colonies, expressive of the
interest taken by her Majesty's Government in the execution of this
great work."

(41) See Mr. Charles Pearson's Speech on this subject.

(42) The feeling of loyalty becomes so natural to soldiers after a few
years service, that it remains impressed upon their hearts in general
for the rest of their lives.

(43) "So great is the fertility of the soil of Canada, that fifty
bushels of wheat per acre are frequently produced on a farm where the
stumps of the trees, which probably occupy an eighth of the surface,
have not been eradicated; some instances of eighty bushels per acre
occur; near York (now Toronto) in Upper Canada 100 bushels were obtained
from a single acre. In some districts wheat has been raised successively
on the same ground for twenty years without manure."--_Montgomery

(44) A return of the public money expended in Arctic expeditions was
called for. It appears that since the peace, or from the year 1815 to
the present, £428,782 have been expended in Arctic expeditions.

(45) Mr. Alderman Sydney said--"that convicts had ceased to be sent to
Norfolk Island or New South Wales for a considerable time, and he
understood that Lord Grey had been influenced on the question by the
perusal of a pamphlet which abounded with information of a most
convincing character."--_Times._

(46) Yes! to the value of its resources we now seem indeed to be
awakened. Earl Grey, in his despatch (dated 17th November, 1848,) to
Lieutenant-General Sir John Harvey, Lieutenant-Governor of Halifax, says
(after speaking of the final Report of Major Robinson on the formation
of the Halifax and Quebec Railway)--"I have perused this able document
with the interest and attention it so well merits; and I have to convey
to you the assurance of Her Majesty's Government that we fully
appreciate the importance of the proposed undertaking, and entertain no
doubt of the great advantages that would result not only to the
provinces interested in the work, but to the empire at large, from the
construction of such a Railway." Again, his Lordship speaks of this
Railway as "a great national line of communication," and yet on the 4th
August, 1848, was issued the following letter from the Treasury

"Sir,--With reference to your letter of the 18th ult. relative to the
expenses incurred in the survey of the proposed Line of Railroad between
Halifax and Quebec, I am directed by the Lords Commissioners of Her
Majesty's Treasury to request that you will move Earl Grey to instruct
the several officers in charge of the Governments of Canada, Nova
Scotia, and New Brunswick, to cause the proportion of the Railroad
survey expenses to be defrayed by each province, to be paid into the
commissariat chests on the respective stations.

                          "I have, &c.
                              (Signed) C. E. TREVELYAN."
  "H. Merivale, Esq., &c. &c."

(47) "We cannot afford to spend £50 a year on a convict at home: let him
be sent to a colony where his labour is absolutely necessary, and where,
though by his good conduct and his industry he may finally attain a
decent subsistence, yet where he will be unable to acquire affluence,
and which he will be prevented from leaving for a happier or a richer
shore: this will be punishment without sentimentalism, and without
vindictiveness."--_The Times_, 19th February, 1849.

"As it is obvious that we must either retain our convicts at home
or send them abroad, and the latter can only be accomplished by
transportation to a colony, it is obvious (especially after the results
of the last experiments) that we must either found a new colony, as in
1783, or adopt the French system, which has nothing certainly to
recommend it."--_Globe_, 17th February, 1849.

(48) Lieutenant Synge has observed: "The necessity of protecting
works further in the interior against hostile tribes of Indians is a
formidable impediment to their successful prosecution at present." How
easily would this impediment be removed by paying these Indians with
guns, blankets, &c., and employing them to guard the convicts and the

(49) "The hostility of the Indians overcome, (or what for the present
would more effectually restrain England's advance, the possibility of
their sufferings being increased by the progress of civilization,) the
passage of the Rocky Mountains may rather prove a stimulant, as it will
be the last remaining obstacle, and, attention being called to the
subject, may urge to exertion the talents of such men as have elsewhere
conquered every natural difficulty, however formidable."--_Lieutenant
Synge_, "_Canada in 1848_."

(50) "More especially the very great opportunities afforded by the
cessation of convict labour in our Australian colonies should not be
overlooked. The great present pressure in these colonies, in consequence
of the want of such labour, should be removed in connection with the
relief and profitable employment of portions of our surplus home
population."--_Same Author._

(51) "To derive from these measures the chiefest benefits they may
confer, the work must be executed under the superintendence of the
Imperial Government."--_Same Author._

(52) "Great as is our civilization and intelligence, compared with the
empires of former days, we have no right to think that the goal of
prosperity and glory is attained. England has by no means reached the
zenith of earthly power; science is as yet but in its infancy; the human
mind has scarcely arrived at adolescence; and, for aught we imperfect
beings know, this little island may be destined by Divine Providence to
continue as a light unto the heathen--as a nucleus for the final
civilization of man."--_Preface to "Taxation of the British Empire,"
published in 1833._

(53) This of course would only be a temporary arrangement previous to
their being sent to distant parts.

(54) "So long however as the empire's heart is overburdened by a surplus
multitude, it should be remembered that most fertile and lovely tracts
of country, many times larger than England, exist in the body of that
empire, which never yet within the knowledge of man have yielded their
fruits to his service. A manifold-multiplied value also is given to
every part of the connected communication between it and the Atlantic,
and thereby also to every part of British America, when once the goal of
the Pacific is attained."--_Lieut. Synge._

(55) An officer whose character stands high both in the navy and in the
army--whose talents have long been exercised in the North American
Colonies--who is acquainted with their value, and who well understands
their naval and military defences.

The writer of this letter sailed from Cork on board H. M. frigate Pique,
in January, 1838, with a wing of the 93rd Highlanders, under the command
of Lieutenant-Colonel Macgregor, and he is happy in having this
opportunity of publicly thanking Captain Boxer, the officers and crew of
the Pique, for the great kindness received by every individual of the
regiment. And he cannot do otherwise than refer particularly to the
officers of the gun-room, who must have been exceedingly inconvenienced
by having a large party of officers joined to their mess, and who yet
had the tact and politeness to show they never felt it. It was a long
and stormy passage of six weeks from Cork to Halifax, but it was a happy
and a merry one; although a damp was at first thrown over us by the
sudden death from accident of a serjeant of the Light Company, and
another poor fellow was washed away from the chains during the passage.

(56) "We have now enjoyed more than thirty years peace, and when it was
proposed to invest the Capital, which we could so readily throw away on
arms and gunpowder, upon actually productive works, the cry was raised
of impending ruin and bankruptcy. The lodging of deposits with the
Accountant-General was to result in 'ruinous, universal and desperate
confusion.' The money was lodged, and no ruinous confusion took place.
The Acts were obtained, and ruin was again predicted; 'where was all the
money to come from?' The money has been got, £112,100,639 has been
raised in the course of three years, involving, it is true, much
suffering to some classes, but not to the nation at large."--_S. Smiles
on Railway Property._

(57) If once it was understood by the public that Government had taken
the initiative, and was determined to assist and see carried out a great
national work such as has been suggested, there is no doubt that many
people who are now paying high poor rates would join together, and a
variety of small Emigration Companies would be formed to assist poor
people to emigrate, and these poor people would willingly and cheerfully
quit their native land, when they had before them the certain prospect
of immediate employment; and if the penny postage was added to the
system, they would be nearer to England in the North American Colonies,
than the poor people of England and Scotland were to each other only a
few years back.

(58) "Four hundred millions of people yet to be introduced into
communication with the rest of mankind! What a prospect for the
merchant, the manufacturer and ship owner. But there is still a higher
and holier prospect. Four hundred millions of active and intelligent
human beings have to be brought within the pale of Christianity! Wary
stepping, too, it will require to enable us to succeed in realizing
either of these objects. To assist us, an abler man for the task could
not be found than the author of the work before us."--_Liverpool
Standard_, _Review on Montgomery Martin's recent Work on China_.

(59) "Nobody can doubt that the western coast of North America is about
to become the theatre of vast commercial and political transactions, and
it is impossible to estimate adequately the value which may soon accrue
to every harbour, coal mine, forest and plain in that quarter of the
globe."--_Morning Chronicle, 15th Feb. 1849._

(60) On which Line the mails could travel from Halifax to Frazer's River
in six days, and the electric telegraph connect these oceans--space
vanishing under that magic power.

(61) See Montgomery Martin's second edition on Railways, Past, Present
and Prospective.

(62) There is not an individual of the 93rd Highlanders, so long
quartered in the highly flourishing city of Toronto, who would not, I
feel well assured, join me in every grateful feeling to its inhabitants,
and every wish for their happiness and welfare.

A great number of the men of the 93rd have settled at and in the
neighbourhood of Toronto.

(63) "The British 'supremacy of the ocean,' which has been a boast and a
benefit, has become a necessity. If I were Prime Minister of England,
now that the Corn Laws are repealed, I should not be able to sleep if I
thought that the war marine of England was not stronger than all the
nations combined, which there is the least chance of ever being engaged
in a conspiracy for our destruction."--_Edward Gibbon Wakefield._

(64) "Canada, which receives the greater number of emigrants, we are by
all accounts only peopling and enriching for the Americans to possess
ere long."--_Art of Colonization_, _Edward Gibbon Wakefield_.

I trust that the British North American Colonies will, in reply to the
above remark, send forth such a voice of attachment to their mother
country that will encourage her people at home and embolden them to come
forward in aid of great colonial measures, resulting as they must do in
universal benefit to the empire.

In page 100 of the work just above quoted we read--"The Banker's
argument satisfied me; but he was not aware of a peculiarity of
colonies, as distinguished from dependencies in general, which furnishes
another reason for wishing that they should belong to the empire--I mean
the attachment of the colonies to their mother country.... I have often
been unable to help smiling at the exhibition of it. In what it
originates I cannot say."

I cannot but deeply regret the use of these expressions, coming as they
do from the pen of so influential an author. Has be forgotten or does he
not feel that

        "Coelum non animum mutant qui trans mare currunt?"

And surely from those who left their native land, carrying with them the
literature of the day and the remembrance of her glory, it was not
likely that there should spring up a generation otherwise than strongly
attached to

        "_That_ fortress built by Nature for herself,
         Against infection and the hand of War?"

Well, indeed, has Lieutenant Synge remarked, "Let it also be remembered
by those who would argue the defection of Canada, or other British
provinces, from the history of the past, what were the circumstances
attending the last revolt (and only one) of British Colonies."

"Let the regret with which those colonies revolted be also borne in
mind! Generations have succeeded, yet in the hearts of many of the best
and noblest that lingering regret remains; not that the revolt took
place, not that it was successful, but that it was rendered necessary."
I shall only add, I agree most perfectly with the author on the Art of
colonization when he says, "But whatever may be its cause, I have no
doubt that the love of England is the ruling sentiment of English

(65) "The Americans would have readily agreed with us upon this boundary
question, when it was of no practical moment."--_Edward Gibbon

This assertion requires proof.

(66) My friend Lieutenant-Colonel Pottinger has brought to my notice,
that the time of transit from London to the west coast of Ireland will
be nearly as follow, vis.

        To Holyhead                             8 hours
        Holyhead to Dublin                      4   "
        Dublin to the west coast of Ireland     4   "
                                     In all    16

It may therefore be worthy of consideration whether there could be
established at one of her ports on the western coast, so often spoken of
as the nearest point of embarkation for British America, an Emigration
Company, which would greatly benefit Ireland by causing a large traffic
through the centre of that country.

(67) Dr. Hind, in speaking of the convict Colony of New South Wales,
says--"If then the question be, what can be done for this Colony?
Begin, I said, by breaking up the system--begin by removing all the
unemancipated convicts. I do not undertake to point out the best mode of
disposing of them; but let them be brought home and disposed of in any
way rather than remain. There is no chance for the Colony until this
preliminary step be taken. But these measures, if carried into effect at
all, must be taken in hand soon. Time--no distant time, perhaps, may
place this 'foul disnatured' progeny of ours out of our power for good
or for harm."

        Printed by W. P. Metchim, 20, Parliament Street.

       *       *       *       *       *

Transcriber's Notes:

1) Text has been adjusted to eliminate notes within notes,
particularly Notes 15 and 43. Certain notes have been inserted
into the main text to eliminate duplicated note numbers.

2) Footnotes redirecting to Notes have been condensed to link
directly with Note, eg:

  Original text:
     text text text[1]

     [1]See Appendix, Note 65.

     (65)  text text text text text text

  Transcribed text:
     text text text[see Note 65]

     (65)  text text text text text text

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