UPPER CANADA (1815-1837).
Rise of a Reform Party.—In Upper Canada the Family Compact endeavored to stem the rising tide of opposition by a harsh use of all the terrors of the law and all the powers of patronage. For many years, indeed, their influence was such as to ensure the return to the assembly of a friendly majority. Thus, to a large extent, the control of legislation was added to their other powers. In 1822 they secured the passing of a law to disqualify the elder Bidwell, whose opposition in the assembly had angered them, from being elected to that body. They also tried—for a short time, indeed, successfully—to extend the disqualification to his more celebrated son, Marshall S. Bidwell, afterwards speaker of the assembly. At the general election of 1824 a majority of the members elected were of the popular, or Reform, party.
Efforts for Reform Thwarted.—In Upper Canada the revenues at the disposal of the executive were quite sufficient to pay official salaries and provide for the administration of justice. This first Reform assembly, therefore (1824-1828), could do very little beyond passing resolutions upon grievances. They adopted, amongst others, an address to the Crown upon the question of the Clergy Reserves and King's College charter. At the general election of 1828 the Reformers were again successful. Bidwell was chosen speaker, and a vote of want of confidence in the executive government of the province was passed ; without any effect, how-