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96   HISTORY OF CANADA.

come out to take public positions in the colony. At first it was determined that English law should be administered in the courts. Then this enactment was modified so as to restore the old French land-laws, but this concession, apparently, was afterwards withdrawn. There was, in fact, much uncertainty and vacillation about the whole question all through this period. The courts established during the time of military rule were of course abolished, and the Canadians were thus left without any part in the government of the country. They could, indeed, after a time, serve as jurymen, but under English law as it then stood they, being Catholic, were ineligible for appointment to any public office or for election to the assembly, had one been called.

The English-speaking Minority. —Up to this time there was practically no English-speaking population in the province, the military forces excepted. With the peace, however, many soldiers in Canada had been discharged from service, and there was also a small influx of traders from the neighboring colony of New York, and from New England. To these must be added the large number of officials who were sent out from England. All told, the English-speaking residents of the province amounted to about two hundred when the new system of government took effect. Ten years later Carleton (who was then governor) put the number at 360, which was probably an underestimate. Of this English-speaking population both Murray and Carleton speak in far from flattering terms. The officials are described by Murray as men of doubtful character, and quite unqualified to till import-ant offices. Of the others, a few were half-pay officers, the rest "traders, mechanics and publicans, who reside in the two towns of Quebec and Montreal. Most of them were followers of the army, of mean education, or soldiers disbanded at the reduction of the troops." In another place he speaks of them as "450 contemptible sutlers and traders." Carleton describes them in equally harsh terms. We need hardly wonder that these two governors, having this opinion of those from whom an assembly would have to be selected, declined to call one.

French-Canadians. —As it was, this small English-speaking minority necessarily monopolized all public offices. From them alone could magistrates and bailiffs be appointed, the religion of the "new subjects" (as the French-Canadians were called)


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