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The Scot in British North America. Vol. IV Rattray, W. J. (William Jordan), 1835-1883 1883

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Array    THE UNIVERSITY OF
BRITISH COLUMBIA
LIBRARY  bank note engravings printing company THE   SCOT
IN
BRITISH   NORTH  AMERICA.
BY
W.  J. EATTEAY, B.A.
VOL. IV.
'wot onto:
MACLEAR   AND    COMPANY
AM Rights Reserved. Entered according to the Act of the Parliament of Canada, in the year one
thousand eight hundred and eighty, by Maolbas & Co., Toronto, in
the office of the Minister of Agriculture. PEEFAGE.
[HE lamented death of the author, whose clear, incisive
style, vigorous thought, and painstaking research,
have imparted so much interest to the preceding pages,
leaving the manuscript of the concluding pages of this volume incomplete, renders apology superfluous for all delay in
presenting it to the public. Another hand has completed,
the unfinished task with the honest endeavour to follow, as
far as possible, the lines laid down by the author. A generous, and fair-minded public, will make due allowance for
the difficulty of undertaking, at short notice, to deal with
a subject demanding accurate historical and geographical
knowledge and exactness of statement to do even a measure
of justice to the work.
It is eminently fit that a book of the nature of the | Scot
in British North America " should include some notice, however fragmentary and imperfect, of the writer, whose early
decease has left such a void in the ranks of Canadian literature. The personal details that, had he lived, the modesty
which was so conspicuous a feature in his character, would
have prevented his giving, may now appropriately be supplied. William J. Rattray was born in London, England,
about the year 1835, his father being a Scot and his mother
English. The family came to Canada about the year 1848,
settling in Toronto, where Mr. Rattray, Senr., was, for many
years engaged in trade, being highly respected as a man and
a citizen. William J. Rattray entered Toronto University
about the year 1854, and devoted himself earnestly to study IV
PREFACE.
especially in the department of metaphysics and philosophy.
He soon developed rare intellectual gifts as a profound and
acute reasoner. He became Prize Speaker and President of
the Literary Society, and his clear and thoughtful utterances soon won him a brilliant reputation among the young
men of his time. On graduating he won the gold medal in
Mental Science. Mr. Rattray was for many years before
his death connected with the press of Toronto, his most
' noteworthy work being done on the staff of the Toronto
Mail. A series of articles which appeared weekly during a
period extending over several years, dealing with the conflict between agnosticism in its various forms and revealed
religion, excited much attention and were greatly admired
by a wide circle of readers. They presented the orthodox
• side of the question with much force and ability. Mr. Rattray's intellect was an unusually active one. His brilliant
natural faculties were cultivated by assiduous study and
constant reflection. Essentially a many-sided man intellectually, he displayed equal power and grasp of his subject
in dealing with current political and social topics, as in
grappling with the deeper problems of life and eternity,
which, of late years, engrossed so much of his thoughts.
His style was notable for its lucidity, smoothness, and
finish, which made everything he wrote readable, and fascinated even where it did not convince. Personally, Mr.
Rattray was one of the most loveable of men and though,
owing to a somewhat retiring disposition, his circle of intimate friends was not wide, there were many who, having but
a slight and passing acquaintance with him, felt a pang of
sincere sorrow at his untimely death. He died at Toronto
on the 26th of September, 1883, after an illness, the long
and insiduous approaches of which had considerably impaired his customary mental force. The readers of the
" Scot in British North America " can best realize how
great a loss Canadian literature has sustained.
December 13th 1883. TABLE OF CONTENTS.
Yol. IV. PAGE.
Preface        iii
Part v.   the scot in the north-west.
Chap. I. The Country and its early History    931
Chap. II.       British   Fur-hunting,  and   Settlement     950
Chap. IH.     The   Rival   Companies  and  Lord
Selkirk     965
Chap. IV.     The Company and Colonization  1014
Chap. V.       The Canadian Pacific Railway  1060
Chap. VI.     The Influx of Settlement  1081
Chap. VII   British Columbia  1101
Chap. VIH. Journalism and Literature   1122
Chap. IX.    Addenda  1157  The following are some of the works consulted in the
preperation of this volume : Parkman's The Old Regime in
Canada ; Parkman's Frontenac ; Garneau's History of Canada ; Sir Alexander Mackenzie's General History of the Fur
Trade; Le Moine's Maple Leaves ; Ballantyne's Hudson
Bay ; Alex. Ross's The Red River Settlement; Hargrave's
Red River; Hamilton's The Prairie Province ; Morgan's
Celebrated Canadians ; Macdonell's Narrative of Transactions in the Red River Country ; Statement respecting the
Earl of Selkirk's Settlement; Murray's British America:
Alex. Rattray's Vancouver Island and British Columbia:
Sir George Simpson's Overland Journey round the World;
Withrow's Popular History of Canada; Begg's History
of the Red River Rebellion ; Begg's Creation of Manitoba;
The Clerical Guide and Churchman's Directory; Ma-
coun's Manitoba and the Great North-West; Bryce's
Manitoba, Its Infancy, Growth, and Present Condition;
Grant's Ocean to Ocean; Macfie's Vancouver Island and
British Columbia ; Dent's Canadian Portrait Gallery ; Mac-
donald's British Columbia ; A Guide to British Columbia J
John Gait's Autobiography; The Canadian Parliamentary
Companion from 1872 to 1883 ; Chambers' Encyclopedia;
Reports of the Chief Engineer of the Canadian Pacific Railway ; &c. Owing to Mr. Rattray's death it is impossible to
supply a complete list of the books consulted, or to give
more than a general acknowledgement of the many favours
received from the friends who have rendered valuable
assistance in obtaining information.  PART V.
THE SCOT IN THE NORTH-WEST.
CHAPTER I.
THE  COUNTRY AND  ITS  EARLY HISTORY.
fTRETCHING from ocean to.ocean, with " cold and pitiless" Labrador at the eastern extremity, and Vancouver
Island for its western outpost, lies a broad belt of land,
bounded on the south by Quebec, Ontario and the United
States, but unlimited northward, save by the icy ramparts
which encompass the Polar Sea. All this vast expanse is
British territory and forms part and parcel of the Dominion
of Canada. Of the eastern portion little will require to be
said, except in so far as the Hudson Bay Company's
trading operations may invite notice. It is almost uniformly bleak and barren, whatever may be its mineral
value, and is historically interesting only because it has
afforded scope for the adventurous trapper and huntsman.
It is with the North-West that we have now chiefly to
do, including in that term all that region lying from James
Bay to the Pacific. It will be found that, as a field for exploration, trade and settlement, this broad domain has claims
upon the consideration of Britons of which the vast majority 932        THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
of them have only the feeblest conception. The literature
accumulated upon the subject is voluminous enough certainly ; and yet it is not too much to affirm that the surpassing value and importance of this noble possession of the
Crown are far from being appreciated not only in Europe,
but even in the older Provinces of the Dominion. To undervalue what is but partially and imperfectly known, especially
if it be distant or demand energy and self-denial to secure,
has been a characteristic of many nations otherwise sufficiently diverse in their tempers and tendencies. It is, so to
speak, the wisdom of ignorance, quickened into contempt
by the languid energy of indolence and satiety. The cynical
Frenchman who consoled Louis XV. for the loss of New France
by the sneer at those | few arpents of snow," represented a
large class not yet extinct. There are not a few men now
who are not much better than he, the only difference being
that they laugh at his ignorance, and at the same time repeat it along with the sneer, when they speak of the Saskatchewan Valley. The | arpents " are not few, farther west
than the courtier dreamed of, but they are only " arpents of
snow " after all.
It was Lord Salisbury, if we mistake not, who uttered
some pungent remarks concerning the right and wrong use
of maps a few years ago. There is need of a similar caution otherwhere than in Eastern concerns. To some men
it would appear to be not merely inexplicable, but preposterous, that the climate and fruitfulness of a continent,
throughout its entire breadth should depend upon anything
except the parallels of latitude. They are astonished, if not
incredulous, when told that the isothermal line which passes f
THE SCOT IN ERTTISH NORTH AMERICA.
_O0
below the city of Quebec reaches the Pacific Ocean at almost
the sixtieth degree of north latitude, and therefore, that all
their preconceptions regarding the North-West are far astray.
In European countries, especially in the British Isles, there
is no room for tracing these broad climatic laws. It seems
startling, therefore, to be told that in and about the Province of Manitoba, seven hundred miles north of Toronto, as
fine, if not finer, wheat is grown than in any part of the rich
peninsula of Ontario; and further, that this fertile breadth
of one hundred miles, hemmed in between the northern
lakes and the boundary line, expands, like the cornucopia,
as it stretches to the Rocky Mountains, until it measures
three or four hundred miles. Even north of that fertile belt,
about far-distant Hudson Bay, | houses " and " factories,"
cereals are cultivated regularly and with assured success.
Another point deserves notice. It is constantly urged by
the pessimists that, whatever the natural advantages of the
North-West may be, it can never compete with the American line of overland travel, either for traffic or permanent
settlement. Now, in the first place, there is the superiority
of the country itself to be taken into account. The American Desert is almost entirely south of the boundary line;
in fact it only impinges slightly upon British territory and
need not be taken into account. There is no salt solitude
on the banks of the Assiniboine, the Saskatchewan, or any
of the other generous streams which water our central America. Broad prairie, navigable waters—lake and river—and
what our neighbours lack, coal almost the entire way from
Manitoba to Victoria. The mineral wealth of the North-
West has only been vaguely guessed at; but it is known 934
THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
that not only in the I fertile belt," but far north, upon the
Mackenzie River, even beyond the Arctic Circle, gold, iron,
copper, lead, and coal have been found in exhaustless abundance.    There is another advantage in thexlimate, notwithstanding the fact that the extremes of heat and cold exceed
those of the older Provinces, though not those of Minnesota.
The atmosphere is dry, and the temperature in any given
season more equable than in other parts of the Dominion.
The snow-fall is less heavy, and there is not usually that
distressing interchange of frost and thaw, ice and slush,
which are so trying elsewhere.    Those who have passed the
winter in the west as well as the east, express their decided
preference for the climate of the former.    So lightly does
the icy finger of the north press upon the fertile country
that horses and cattle are often pastured all the winter upon
the long grass on the prairie, without shelter and yet without risk.    The facilities for the construction of a transcon-
• tinental [railway are as much in our favour as the fertility
and well-watered character of the land.  Most of the country
is comparatively level, or, at worst, rolling prairie, and the
engineering difficulties are few, until the Rock}7 Mountains
are reached.   Even there, the passes are at a lower elevation,
the snows less threatening, and the work necessarily less
expensive.   Add to this, that, through this rich and fertile
region, lies the shortest route from Europe to China and
Japan, and the reader may form some conception of the
glorious future in store for the Canadian North-West.
The pioneers in discovery here were, of course, the French
of Old Canada; but it is to Scotsmen especially, that the
world owes the complete exploration of the territory, and THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
935
the first efforts put forth for its settlement and civilization
under the British regime. The successors of Champlain,
La Salle, Marquette, Joliet, and De La Verendrye—the first
white man to lift his eyes upon the snow-tipped summits
of the Rocky Mountains—were almost all of them Scots.
Some indications of Scottish energy are embalmed in the
maps and charts of the country; yet they inadequately
represent the courage and enterprise displayed in the early
days by those avant-couriers of trade and exploration. The
river nomenclature is usually supposed to afford the best
indication of the race earliest at work in any country j
and, if that be taken as a mark of Scotch priority, the evidence is conclusive. The Mackenzie River—longer than
the St. Lawrence, including its great chain of lakes—traced
by him whose name it bears to the delta through which it
struggles, by various mouths, into the frozen sea, the Fraser
River of British Columbia, the Simpson and the Finlay—
all afford silent testimony to the indomitable courage and
enterprise of the North Briton. Whatever future—and it
must needs be a glorious one—awaits this noble British
domain, in the past certainly, all the rough, and much that
proved thankless, work was accomplished by the stout arm,
the strong will, and the hard.head of the Scot. Multitudes
of diverse nationalities will pour upon those fertile plains,
and enjoy the fruits of the Scotsman's labours,, without
thinking of their benefactor; still, to the eye of the historian, or even the grateful patriot, in centuries to come, the
trials and struggles of the past will assume their fair proportions in any panorama of this greater Scotland in the
North American continent.. 936 THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
During the French period which the graphic pen of Mr.
Parkman, for the first time, introduced to the notice of the
English reader—the fur trade was the be-all and the end-all
of colonization. It was the pursuit of skins and peltries of
all sorts that more than anything else, fomented the natural
antagonism between French and English colonies, aggravated the horrors of Indian tribal warfare, and eventually
brought about—first, the death-struggle between the powers
in the North, and, secondly, by necessary sequence, though
indirectly, the American Revolution* The great aim of the
Colonial Governors, both English and French, was to detach
the Indian tribes from alliance with their national rivals.
When the French were not fighting the Iroquois of the British colonies, they were intriguing with them, though for the
most part unsuccessfully. The English, on the other hand,
strove to destroy the French trade by seducing or crushing
the Hurons and Ottawas, who not only served the masters of
New France, but commanded their communications with
the North-West, both by the Ottawa and the Upper Lakes,
and at Michillimackinac (now Mackinaw), the junction of
Lakes Huron and Michigan, by the-frontier route. It was
the settled policy of the French rulers to hem in the British
colonies by Gallic settlements on all sides, and if they could
not drive them off the continent, at least to concede only a
strip of territory, ^upon the Atlantic.     It was with this
* "We come now to a trade far more important than all the rest together, one which
absorbed the enterprise of the colony, drained the life sap from other branches of commerce, ar.d, even more than a vicious system of government, kept them in a state of chronic
debility—the hardy, adventurous, lawless, fascinating fur-trade. In the eighteenth century
Canada exported a moderate quantity of timber, wheat, the herb called ginseng, and a few
other commodities; but from first to last she lived chiefly on beaver-skins. The government
tried without ceasing to control and regulate this traffic; but it never succeeded. Park-
man : The Old Rigime in Canada, p. 308.
I THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
937
object that the heroic La Salle, Father Marquette and other
daring explorers, wandered far west and north and south.
Fort du Quesne on the Ohio, memorable as the scene of
Braddock's defeat, was only one of the cordon of strongholds
•designed to strangle British North American colonization in
its infancy. The claim set up by Frontenac, Denonville and
other French viceroys to both shores of the great lakes, and
•all the territory watered by streams flowing into them, was
prompted by no mere lust of national aggrandizement in the
way of land, but by a settled determination to secure and
maintain possession of the great water highways of the
■continent.
All those historical episodes, which give so romantic a
tinge and shed so sombre an interest over the chronicles of
of New.France—the surprises, the heroisms, the patience,
the endurance and the sufferings of soldier, priest, religieuse
and habitan—were occasioned by the Indian intrigues and
counter-intrigues in the great struggle for the mastery in
trade competition. The mother countries might be at peace,
and yet covert, and often open, war was waged between the
colonies. Even during the later Stuart epoch, when the
honour and fortunes of England were at the lowest ebb, the
royal pensioners of France who sat on the throne could not
restrain the impetuosity of the Virginia, New York, and
New England colonists. The struggle between Denonville
and Gov. Dongan of New York may serve to illustrate the
internecine conflict which never ceased until the red cross
of St. George floated over the castle of St. Louis. The Marquis de Denonville, with his predecessor the irascible De la
Barre, filled up the space between the two vice-royalties of 938 THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
Frontenac. His term almost exactly coincided with the
reign of James II. in England. He appears to have been a
pious, well-meaning ruler, not without considerable abilities
and certainly with strong patriotic feelings. Colonel Thomas
Dongan, an Irishman and nephew of the redoutable Earl of
Tyrconnel, was a Catholic, and yet no friend either to the
Jesuits or the French. He had been strictly enjoined, both
by Charles and James, to concede every French demand, to
give no countenance to the Iroquois or any Indian tribe
hostile to the French; and yet, either from choice or necessity, he violated his instructions in every particular. The
Dutch and English settlers were determined to assert their
claims to a share in the lucrative fur-trade in the North-
West. As this traffic could not be carried on without contracting Indian alliances, of which the French were naturally
jealous, conflict was inevitable under any circumstances.
The Iroquois were not merely friends of both races, but even
aspired to hold the balance of power between them. Dongan was, perhaps unjustly, accused of having incited the
Five (or Six) Nation Indians to war; unhappily, as the
whole history shows, they stood in no need of prompting.
The scalping-knife was always ready whetted; it was only
to sing the war-dance, brandish the tomahawk, and away to
the harvest of death. The French had an astute agent in
the Jesuit Lamberville, but they made little progress south of
the Lakes. The chief, " Big Mouth," as represented in Park-
man's graphic narrative,* was wily enough to palter with
the bluff La Barre, and, in spite of his plausible and almost
eloquent harangues, little satisfaction was obtained by the
* Parkman: Frontenac, p. 109. THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
»'69
French. The old soldier failed and was succeeded by Denonville, who, according to Saint Vallicr, always had the
Psalms of David in his hands. The Church, no less than
the State, hoped much from hi& piety and administrative
skill. He was a soldier of long service, but he had to face a
difficult and trying crisis with an empty exchequer and a
mere handful of troops. The people of New France were
numerically inferior to those of New England and New
York ; the flower of their youth were scouring the woods,
huckstering with the Indians and worse; and above all
there was a government which was despotic without effective power, strong where it might have been mild, and weak
where it ought to have been strong. And yet the task was
laid upon Denonville to decide in France's favour the deadly
struggle between the French and English colonies*
Denonville was not disposed to resort to any means which
his religious spirit did not sanction. He was a firm ally
of the clergy in their inflexible hostility to the traffic in
brandy with the Indians; but he could also use religion as a
political engine, when French emissaries were needed on
British territory. He appeals rather too fervently to Don-
gan, as a man "penetrated with the glory of that name
which makes Hell tremble, and at the mention of which all
the powers of Heaven fall prostrate," to " come to understanding to sustain our missionaries by keeping those fierce
* " The Senecas, insolent and defiant, were still attacking the Illinois; the tribes of the
North-West were angry, contemptuous and disaffected; the English of New York were
urging claims to the whole country south of t£e great lakes, and to a controlling share in
all the western fur trade; while the English of Hudson Bay were competing for the traffic
of the northern tribes, and the English of New England were seizing upon the fisheries of
Acadia, and now and then making practical descents upon its coast. The great question
lay between New York and Canada. Which of these two should gain mastery in the west.—
Frontenac, p. 117. 940
THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
tribes in respect and fear." But although Col. Dongan was
■a Catholic, he was too crafty a bird to be caught in the net
spread in his sight. He knew full well what the Jesuits,
Lamberville, Engelran, and their associates were about
amongst the Iroquois, the Hurons and Ottawas; and he
knew his duty as an English governor. He boldly entered
the lists against the French schemes. g If his policy should
prevail," writes Parkman, " New France would dwindle to a
feeble Province on the St. Lawrence ; if the French policy
should prevail, the English colonies would remain a narrow
strip along the sea."* The " diplomatic duel" which ensued
between the two rulers, is diverting at all events, if not
edifying. The earnest appeals of Denonville, the rough-and-
ready coarseness of retort used by the Irishman, together,
give spice to an altogether futile correspondence. Denonville complains that Dongan had promised to leave everything in dispute to decision by the kings at home, and yet
had disregarded the orders of his master. So, he had no
doubt, but, with the mental reservation, that he should only
obey instructions of which he approved. The Frenchman
scolds his neighbour for permitting the sale of New England
rum to the Aborigines. " Think you," he writes, 1 that
religion will make any progress, while your traders supply
the savages in abundance with the liquor which, as you
ought to know, converts them into demons, and their lodges
into counterparts of Hell ? " " Certainly," replies Dongan,
| our rum doth as little hurt as your brandy, and, in the opinion of Christians is much more wholesome."f The New
York Governor scouted the idea that " a few loose fellows
Ibid,, p. 119.       t Ibid., pp. 127,128. THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
941
•rambling amongst Indians to keep themselves from starving gave the French a right to the North-West." As for
the plea drawn from the French Jesuit missionary, he sneer-
ingly remarks i The King of China never goes anywhere
without two Jesuits with him. I wonder you make not the
like pretence to that kingdome."* In short, Dongan utterly
repudiated the French claims either to territorial ownership
or the exclusive right to trade.
This brief glimpse of the relations between the colonies
touching the fur trade and the Indian tribes, may serve to
illustrate the deadly conflict which was almost unintermit-
tently waged between the two nationalities. It remains to
give a slight glance at French progress in the North-West.
In the peltry traffic, as elsewhere, the Royal authorities,
the King, his Minister, the Governor and the Intendant,
attempted to inspect everything with their administrative
microscope and manage everything with their official
tweezers. The Bourbon system was, above all things,
paternal—the exact antipodes of any government a Scot or
an Englishman could either frame or endure. Colbert, the
great minister of Louis XIV., wrote to the ablest and best
of the Quebec Intendants, in 1666, after assuring him that
the King regards all his Canadian subjects as his own children, desires the Sieur Talon | to solace them in all things,
and encourage them to trade and industry." To this end he
was instructed to " visit all their settlements, one after the
other, in order to learn their true condition, provide as much
as possible for their wants, and, performing the duty of a
good head of a family, put them in the way of making some
Ibid., p. 161. 942 TEE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
profit."*   How this unwieldy system was manipulated from
Paris may be seen in the three volumes of the Royal Edicts
and Ordinances reprinted in Canadaf by the Provincial Government in 1854.    A glance at the indexes at the end of
the third volume will, of itself, give some idea of the minute
care exercised over the mint, anise and cummin of Canada,
while the weightier matters of the law were being dealt
with as avarice or love of adventure might suggest on the
" few arpents of snow " lining the St. Lawrence.    It will be
be found that whilst all sorts of petty arrangements were
solemnly made in Paris to bind Canadians, not merely such
as we are accustomed to consider within the purview of
government, but matters commercial and purely personal of
the most trivial character, the inherent weakness of this
scheme of centralized despotism would early have manifested
itself in any case, but it became clearly apparent the moment
free Anglo-Saxon energy became a competitor in the race.
.The fur-trade was, of course, taken, so far as possible, under
the fatherly care of the rulers at Paris, Quebec, and Montreal, but to begin with, their hands were not clean.    Systematic jobbery pervaded the entire governmental system. The
taxes were farmed to the highest bidders, and of the small
portion which passed nominally into the coffers of the State,
far too much stuck to the fingers of the Governors, Inten-
dants, and those creatures to whom New France was simply
a place of exile, where rapid fortunes were to be made by
the greedy and unscrupulous.    The mother  country was
early depleted of men and treasure by its vast and expensive
* Parkman : Old Regime, p. 209.
t Edits, Ordonnances Royaux, Declarations et Arrets du Conseil d-Etatdu Roi, concer-
nant le Canada.   Quebec, 1854. THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA. 945
wars, and as the Canadian officials were poorly paid and
supported, they were compelled to make a competence, and
often a bare livelihood by engaging in trade, and not seldom
by barefaced extortion, peculation and fraud. Whilst the
minister at Paris and his master were framing edicts against
profane swearing, deciding where the officials should sit at
church, how many horses a farmer should keep, and how
large a house he might build, &c, the men high in place
were plundering all alike with admirable impartiality. Bigot,
the last and far the most infamous of the Intendants, although he robbed right and left, was so solicitous about the *
morals of the people that he forbade those residing in the
country to remove into Quebec, lest they should be corrupted by city life * The paralyzing hand of absolutism
was everywhere, meddling even with the bread a man ate
and the texture of his coat; and, as for freedom of speech,
Intendant Meules accurately expressed the prevailing view
when he said : " It is of great consequence that the people
should not be left at liberty to speak their minds.""J*
So far as trade was concerned, the French policy may be
summed up in one word—monopoly. Early in the sixteenth
century, Cardinal Richelieu chartered " The Company of the
Hundred Associates," ceding to them all French North America on the usual terms of feudality. After being about
thirty years in active operation, the Associates, who had
dwindled down to forty-five, surrendered their charter in
1663. This Company possessed governmental and even
royal powers, but, when it disappeared, a reguJajfc system of
* Old Regime, p. 279.
t For a general view of the Civil and Ecclesiastical Government of Canada see Bell's
Garneau : History of Canada, B. III. Chaps III. and IV. 944 THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
administration was established. In 1664 the monopoly of
trade was given to the West India Company for a period of
fifty years, and at about the same time the feudal system
was regularly and definitely introduced. M. Talon, the first
and best of the Intendants, under the new colonial system,
amongst other wise and beneficent measures, urged and
obtained a relaxation of trade from Colbert, by which the
people were allowed to import their own goods, and buy
furs and peltries from the Indians, subject to a royalty payable to the all-devouring Company. The traffic in furs
was, however, from the first, almost beyond the control
both of the government and the monopolists. It was, in
fact, the only safety-valve for the pent-up energy, enterprise and spirit of adventure, which lay within the breasts
of the Canadian Youth. Companies and farmers of taxes
might mulct the owners of beaver-skins, at Montreal, Three
Rivers or Quebec, but they had little or no control over the
• Indians who trapped the fur-bearing animals, or the middlemen who traded both with the aborigines and with the
merchants of New France.
The Goureurs des Bois or Wood-coursers, as the middlemen came to be called, soon formed a distinct class of the
Canadian population. As the discoverer of the Mackenzie
River says, they were "a kind of pedlars, and were extremely useful to the merchants engaged in the fur-trade
who gave them the necessary credit to proceed in their commercial undertakings. Three or four of these people would
join their stock, put their property into a birch-bark canoe,
which they worked themselves, and either accompanied the
natives in their excursions, or went at once to the country THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
945
where they knew they were to hunt.     At length these
voyages extended to twelve or fifteen months, when they
returned with rich cargoes of furs, and followed by great
numbers of the natives.    During the short time requisite to
settle their accounts with the merchants, and procure fresh
credit, they generally contrived to squander away all their-
gains, when they returned to renew their favourite mode
of life, their views being answered, and their labour sufficiently rewarded, by indulging themselves in extravagance
and dissipation during the short space of one month in
twelve or fifteen."*    There was much to attract the romantic spirits of New France in this novel and adventurous life
and if they had been amenable to the control of the Government  and the Church, their hardiness and  power of
endurance might have made the Coureurs of use to their
country in its conflicts with any enemy, red or white.   Unhappily, instead of  proving a  source of strength to the
colony, this class became a running ulcer through which
all the vigour and vitality of Canada ebbed gradually away.
The monopolists were the first to take the alarm, though
not at all on moral or political grounds.    The interloper
were lessening the profits of the West India Company, and
although under Colbert's regulations, the whole population
became more or less interested in the fur-trade, they had
organized power at their command.    The consequence was
an unsuccessful effort " to bring the trade to the colonists, to
prevent them going to the Indians, and induce the Indians
to come to them.    To this end a great annual fair was
* Sir Alex. Mackenzie's General History of the Fur Trade from Canada to the Northwest prefixed to his Voyages to the Frozen and Pacific Oceans in the Tears 1789 and 1793..
London, 1801. 946 THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
established, by order of the king, at Montreal."* Another
fair was afterwards established near Three Rivers; but
neither of them served the purpose. The people were too
wary to submit to the paternal scheme, and they soon
learned to form settlements further west- and north, to
intercept the Indians, and negotiate with them as they
pleased. It was now, through the coureurs and squatters,
that brandy was introduced to facilitate trade with the red
men, and the fearful train of evils which followed, against
which the Church uniformly protested in no uncertain terms
At last, although the curse of the traffic was sufficiently
apparent, the New England rum was made the excuse for
the sale of French brandy and vice versa.
Gradually the attractive life of the Coureurs des Bois
absorbed all the best youth of the country, and, in the end,
instead of civilizing the Indians, it seemed not improbable
that the French would themselves be barbarized by contact
-and admixture with the Indians. Against the lawless ad-
venturers, the king and his officers strained every nerve.
Duchesneau, Denonville, and other viceroys complained
bitterly of the fearful demoralization of the young men.
Instead of cultivating the soil, they permitted it to go to
waste ; they would not marry the fair Frenchwomen and do
their part in the building up of the colony; but preferred
the lawless, sensual and degraded life of the woods and the
wigwam.f   The colony was, as nearly as possible, in the
* Old Regime, p. 303. Mr. Parkman gives a graphic account of one of these Indian
gatherings in the passage directly following these words.
t " Out of the beaver trade," observes Parkman, " rose a huge evil, baneful to the growth
and morals of Canada. All that was most active and vigorous in the colony took to the woods,
and escaped from the control of in ten dan ts, councils, and priests, to the savage freedom
of the wilderness.   Not only were the possible profits great; but, in pursuit of them there THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA. 947
condition it would have been, if all its adult males had been
drafted away upon foreign service. Farms, wives and children were deserted by these adventurers who moved off
occasionally in organized bands.* The government was at
its wit's end. At times it ordered whipping,, branding, and
the galleys, to be inflicted upon all who went to the woods
without license; at others, it tried coaxing and promises,
and promised amnesties.f It was all to no purpose, and
the work of demoralization continued up to the conquest
by Great Britain.
Meanwhile, by the various agencies at work, the area of
the hunting-grounds was being gradually extended until it
reached nearly two thousand five hundred miles from the
citadel at Quebec. It may be well to note here the names
of the chief explorers with the dates of their voyages. To
the great Samuel Champlain belongs the credit of first
tracing out the Ottawa and Lake Huron route to the North-
West. In 1615, with only four voyageurs, and an interpreter named Etienne Brule*, he ascended the Ottawa River,
visited Lake Nipissing, descended the French River, embarked upon the broad waters of the Georgian, and returned
by Matchedash Bay, the Huron country and Lake Simcoe,
not homewards, but to fight the Iroquois with the Hurons
was a fascinating element of adventure and danger. The bush rangers or coureurs des bois
were to the king an object of horror. They defeated his plans for the increase of the population, and shocked his native instinct of discipline and order. Edict after edict was directed against them; and more than ouce the colony presented the extraordinary spectacle
of the greater part of fts young men turned into forest outlaws.   Old Regime, pp. 309, 310.
* "The famous Du Shut is said to have made a general combination of the young men of
Canada to follow him into the woods. Their plan was to be absent four years, iu order that
the edicts against them might have time to relent."   Ibid. p. 310.
t One of these "Acts of Grace" will be found in the Quebec edition of Edits, Ordennan-
ces, &c, vol. ii. p. 551. ™
948 THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
and Algonquins on the Genesee River. In 1665 Father
Allonez explored the shores of Lake Superior and established
a mission there. At Sault Ste Marie the renowned Marquette formed a settlement in 1668, and in 1670 the Fathers
Allonez, Dablon and Marquette had heard of the Mississippi
and were on the high road to the great North-West. In 1671,
Marquette established a Huron settlement at Michillimack-
inac at the junction of Lakes Huron and Michigan, and the
first steps on the threshold of the unknown land were traversed. Dreams of a short route to China and India were
floating through the minds of laymen like Joliette and La
Salle when they turned their eyes to the west. The story
of the intrepid La Salle does not fall within the purview cf
this work; yet his exploration of Lake Erie, the building
of the first vessel above Niagara—the wonderful description
of the Falls by Father Hennepin, and the fortification of the
line which still constitutes a frontier between nations, is
always fresh to the reader, and may be thus incidentally
referred to. Towards the close of the French rSgime—in
Canada, the last of the great French explorers, the Sieur De
La Vdrendrye attempted—now that early fancies had been
dissipated—to reach the Pacific by the overland route.
Twelve years did that patient and courageous adventurer
spend, in company with a brother and two sons, in exploring
the country west of Lake Superior. The entire country to
the west, including the vast extent of territory from the Saskatchewan down to the upper Missouri, and the Yellowstone
Rivers were faithfully examined, and in 1743, sixty years
before any British traveller came that way, the Rocky
Mountains were sighted by De la Ve"rendryes son and bro- THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.        949
ther. This was the last expiring effort of French exploring
■energy, and th« scene opens upon British effort in a region
which was destined to be for all time to come an English-
speaking land. :^y^j£20>
i^^^^-m
&S&*
CHAPTER II.
BRITISH FUR-HUNTING AND SETTLEMENT.
„N the second of May, 1670, King Charles II. granted
a charter to his "trusty and well-beloved cousin,"
the renowned Prince Rupert, son of the Bang's aunt, Elizabeth and Frederick of Bohemia, the Duke of Albermarle,
Arlington, Ashley and others, under the name of "The
Governor and Company of Adventurers of England trading in Hudson Bay." This famous and long-lived corporation was ostensibly established, in the words of the Charter, I for the discovery of a new passage into the South Sea,
for the finding some trade for furs, minerals and other considerable commodities," and also for the Christianization of
the Indians. Concerning the last of these objects, perhaps,
the less said the better; it was, however, a habit in those
days to cover the selfishness of trading schemes with a thin
veneering of religion, and perhaps no one was either deceived or sought to be deceived thereby. A large portion
of the continent was certainly explored by the agents of this
and other companies, " but this new passage to the South
Sea I was not discovered by them. On the other hand, the
fur-trade proved lucrative beyond the most sanguine expectations of these 1 adventurers." The charter had granted
them a monopoly of trade, with plenary powers, executive
and judicial, in and over all seas, straits, lands, &c, lying THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
951
within the entrance of Hudson's Straits, and the rivers entering them, "not already occupied by any other English
subject or other Christian Power or State. In return they
were to yield and pay therefor two elks and two black beavers, whenever his Majesty or his heirs should set foot in the
territory.
It is more than probable that neither the King nor the
Company had any idea of the extent of territory thus handed
over to the latter. The two branches of the Saskatchewan
cover all the fertile belt from the Rocky Mountains, and
their waters reach Hudson Bay by Lake Winnipeg and the
Nelson River. Towards the United States the Assiniboine,
with its tributaries, the XJu'Appelle and the Souris unite at
Winnipeg or Fort Garry with the Red River which rises
far south of the boundary line, and all these waters flow also
into Lake Winnipeg. The early operations of this great
monopoly were confined to the vicinity of Hudson Bay and
the pear-shaped inlet known as James Bay which forms its
apex. The profits of the fur-trade were enormous. " During the first twenty years of its existence, the profits of the
Company were so great that, notwithstanding considerable
losses sustained by the capture of their establishments by
the French, amounting in value to £118,014, they were
enabled to make a payment to the proprietors, in 1684, of
fifty per cent., and a further payment in 1689 of twenty-five
per cent. In 1690, the stock was trebled without any call
being made, besides affording a payment to the proprietors
of twenty-five per cent, on the increased or newly created
stock. From 1692 to 1697 the Company incurred loss and
damage to the amount of £97,500 from the French.   In 1720 952
THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
their circumstances were so far improved that they again
trebled their capital stock, with only a call of ten per cent,
from the proprietors, on which they paid dividends averaging nine per cent, for many years, showing profits on the
originally subscribed capital stock actually paid up, of
between sixty and seventy per cent, per annum, from the
year 1690 to 1800." *
Meanwhile the authorities of New France could hardly
be expected to look with patience upon this invasion of their
domain from the back door. Towards the close of the
seventeenth century they were threatened by Britain and
her colonies on every side. The New England fishermen
menaced Acadia and the Gulf; the Dutch and English of
New York disputed French supremacy on the great lakes
and the Ohio River; and the Hudson Bay Company was
gradually, but surely infringing upon French territory from
the north and north-west. It was not unnatural that the
pioneers and missionaries of New France who had made the
North-West their own by exploration should resent the
intrusion of the British by sea. Both by the Ottawa and
the great lakes they had established routes for trade and
travel into "the great lone land." Moreover, the French
laid claim to all the territory to the Arctic Ocean as their
own, and contended that it had been granted, as a portion
of New France to the company of merchants in 1603, to the
Company of One Hundred Associates or Partners, under
Richelieu, in 1627, and finally to the West India Company
in 1664.  Their rulers argued that as the King of France had
* Eighty Tears Progress in British North America.   By various authors:
aud Trade," by H. Y, Hind, P. R. G. S., p. 279.
" Commerce- THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
953
claimed this vast domain in these several charters, there was
no room for the Hudson Bay Company in 1670, sseing that
Charles II. had estopped them from occupying " any territory already occupied by any other Christian Prince or
State." In addition to all this, Charles I., had by the treaty
of St. Germain-en-Laye, distinctly confirmed the French
claim to the Hudson Bay Territory in 1632; and many
years after, two Canadians, De Groselliers and Radisson,
made their way thither to establish trade. Failing to enlist
the French court in their enterprise, these adventurers
assisted the young English company, which, towards the
close of the century, possessed four forts, one near the mouth
of the Nelson, and three others, Forts Albany, Hayes and
Rupert, at the southern end of the Bay.
Denonville, the Governor of New France, whose piety and
patriotism were in wondrous accord, resolved, in 1686, to
try conclusions with these intruders. The two countries
were at peace, it is true, but that was not a consideration of
much weight in the wilds of North America ; and besides,
the French rule was sorely tried by the masked warfare of
Dongan and his Iroquois allies. Early in the spring he
accordingly despatched the Chevalier de Troyes with four
or five score of Canadians, from Montreal, to strike a blow
at the English trading-posts. Working their way up the
Ottawa, by river and lake, they at last arrived at Fort Hayes,
the nearest of the English depots. " It was a stockade, with
four bastions, mounted with cannon. There was a strong
block house within, in which the sixteen occupants of the
place were lodged, unsuspicious of danger."*    The surprise 954 THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
was complete, and the inmates of the fort were captured in
their shirts. Fort Rupert, forty leagues along the shore,
was also taken after a slight resistance, and Troyes then
turned his attention to Fort Albany on the other side of
Fort Hayes, at the south-west angle of James' Bay. Here
there was no surprise, for the French doings at Fort Hayes
were known at the mouth of the Albany River. Henry
Saro-ent and his thirty men made an attempt to defend
the place, but they were attacked both from the land and
water sides. The French had ten captured pieces of ordnance with them, and soon succeeded in making the place
untenable. Satisfied with these triumphs, Troyes, after
razing the forts to the ground, sent his prisoners home in an
English vessel, and returned to Montreal with his booty.
Of course Louis XIV. and James II. engaged in some con-
troversy, and finally agreed to enjoin strict neutrality upon
their colonial representatives.
Amongst those who were engaged in the raid upon the
Hudson Bay forts were the two brothers Iberville and St.
Helfine, and they were destined to reap still further glory in
the struggle of France for supremacy.* Iberville had been
engaged in the conquest of Newfoundland in 1697, when he
received peremptory orders from France, through his brother
Serigny, to attack the English in Hudson Bav.    The two
* " No Canadian, under the French rule, stands in a more conspicuous or more deserved
eminence than Pierre Le Moyne d'lberville. In the seventeenth century, most of those
who acted a prominent part in the colony were born in Old France; but Iberville was a true
s _>n of this soil. He and his brothers, Longueuil, Serigny, Assigny, Maricourt, Sainte-Hel8ne,
the two Chateaugays, and the two Bienvilles, were, one and all, children worthy of their
father, Charles Le Moyne, of Montreal, and favourable types of that noblesse, to whose adventurous hardihood half the continent bears witness." Frontenac, p. 388.' See also an
interesting acount of the several members of this illustrious family in Le Moine: Maple
Leaves, 1st series, chap. viii. THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
955
brothers had captured Fort Nelson, or Fort Bourbon as they
called it, three years before, but it had been retaken during
the summer of 1693. In July, 1697, Iberville and his brother left Placentia with four vessels of war and one store-
ship, bound for the Arctic Seas. When the little fleet
entered the Bav it was at once entangled in the ice. The
store-ship was crushed and lost, and Iberville, who was on
the Pelican, lost sight of his three consorts. He had nearly
reached Fort Nelson, when three sail appeared, and the
gallant Frenchman prepared to welcome his missing comrades. They turned out to be armed English merchantmen
mounting altogether one hundred and twenty guns. A
furious battle ensued, from which Iberville finally emerged
victorious, through his superior seamanship. The Pelican,
however, was badly damaged, and she finally stranded,
parted amidships, and was a total loss. Notwithstanding
all his misfortunes, however, the brave Iberville captured
Fort'Nelson, and returned homeward in triumph.*
The interval between the close of the seventeenth century
and the treaty of cession in 1763, may be passed over without remark. The French continued their explorations in
the North-West to the Saskatchewan and the Rocky Mountains | but they never again attempted to dispossess the
Hudson Bay Company by force of arms. New France had
fallen upon evil days, and was compelled to contract her
lines and concentrate her strength for the deadly, struggle
in which she was foredoomed to be the loser.    A few years
' * " Iberville had triumphed over the storms, the icebergs, and the Englifh. The North
had seen his prowess, and another fame awaited him in the regions of the sun; for he be-
•came the father of Louisiana, and his brother Bienville founded New Orleans." Frontenac,
p. 393. 956
THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
after Canada passed into British hands a number of Montreal merchants, chiefly Scots, conceivad the idea of re-open-
ino- the North-Western fur-trade on the old French routes.
It was in 1766, according to Sir Alex. Mackenzie * that the
trade was recommenced from Michillimackinac (Mackinac)
at the junction of Lakes Huron and Michigan.   At first, the
adventurers only travelled to the mouth of the Kaministi-
quia on Lake Superior, and to the Grand Portage thirty
miles further down.     The pioneer who first resolved to
penetrate to the furthest limits of the French discoveries
was Thomas Curry, a Scottish merchant.    With guides and
interpreters, and four canoes, he made his way to Fort
Bourbon, an old French post at Cedar Lake, on the Saskatchewan.    Mackenzie observes that " his risk and toil were
well recompensed, for he came back the following spring
with his canoes filled with fine furs, with which he proceeded to Canada, and was satisfied never again to return
to the Indian country."-}-   The first who followed Curry's
example was James Finlay, another Scot, who made his
way to Nipawee, the last French settlement on the Saskatchewan (lat. 53J°, long. 103 W.).    His success was equal to
that of Curry, and from that time the fur-traders gradually
spread themselves over that vast and almost unknown region.
Meanwhile the Hudson Bay Company had not advanced
far from the waters to which they owed their name.    It
was in the year 1774, " and not till then," writes Mackenzie,
that the Company thought proper to move from home to
the east bank of Sturgeon Lake, in latitude 53° 56" North,
* Voyages :—9eneral History of the Fur Trade, p. viii.
t ibid. THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA. 957
and longitude 102° 15' West, and became more jealous of
their fellow-subjects, and perhaps with more cause, than
they had been of those of France."* Our author has a
strong feeling against the Hudson Bay Company and complains bitterly that they followed the Canadians from settlement to settlement, annoying and obstructing them. It may
be well to note here a fact which will appear more clearly
hereafter, that not only the Canadian traders, but most of
the Hudson Bay Company's servants, were from an early
period Scots, and have always remained so up to the present
time.-}*
The half-breeds are scattered over most of the North-
West, from Hudson Bay and Algoma to the Rocky Mountains. Principal Grant in his entertaining volume, § Ocean
to Ocean I (p. 157), remarks of this class : " They are farmers, hunters, fishermen, voyageurs, all in one; the soil is
scratched, three inches deep, early in May, some seed is
thrown in, and then the whole household go off to hunt the
buffalo. They get back about the first of August, spend the
month in having and harvesting, and arfe off to the fall hunt
early in September. Some are now so devoted to farming
that they only go to one hunt in the year. It is astonishing
that, though knowing so well ' how not to do it,' they raise
some wheat, a good deal of barley, oats and potatoes." It is
neccessary here to notice the marked distinction between
the Scottish and French half-breeds or Metis, as they are
* Ibid. p. ix.^-misprinted xi.
t " It is a strange fact that three-fourths of the Company's servants are Scotch Highlanders and Orkney men. There are very few Irishmen and still fewer Englishmen. A great
number, however, are half-breeds and French Canadians, especially among the labourers,
and voyageurs." Hudson's Bay. By B. M. Ballantyne: London, 1857, p. 42. Mr, Ballan.
tyne is a Scotsman, who spent six years in the H. B. Co.'s service. •958
THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
•called. The contrast, which has been often noticed by travellers, is so marked as to merit particular attention, since
it serves to illustrate what has been said of the sterling
worth and persistency of the Scottish character, even under
the most trying of all tests—contact and admixture with an
inferior race. The Frenchman, like the Spaniard, of more
southern latitudes, always sinks in the scale of civilization"
by intermarriage with the Indians. " His children," says
Dr. Grant, " have all the Indian characteristics, and habits,
weaknesses, and ill-regulated passions of nomads." When
a Frenchman weds a squaw, " her people become his people
but his God her God," and he gradually sinks to her level.
When a Scotchman married a squaw, her position, on the
•contrary, was frequently not much higher than a servant's.
He was ' the superior person' of the house. He continued
-Christian after his fashion, she continued a pagan. The
granite of his nature resisted fusion, in spite of family and
tribal influences, the attrition of all surrounding circumstances, and the total absence of civilization; and the wife
was too completely separated from him to raise herself to
his level. The children of such a couple take more after
the father than the mother. As a rule, they are shrewd,
-steady and industrious. A Scotch half-breed has generally
.a field of wheat before or' behind his house, stacks, barn, and
provisions for a year ahead in his granary. The Metis has
.a patch of potatoes or a little barley, and in a j^ear of scarcity draws his belt tighter or starves. It is interesting, as
one travels in the great North-West, to note how the two
old allies of the middle ages have left their marks on the
whole of this great country.    The name of almost every THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
959>
river, creek, mountain or district is either French or Scotch."*
It is the intelligence, industry, and perseverance born with
the Scot, often the only, and yet the noblest, heritage bequeathed him by his forbears, that makes him the most-
valuable settler in any land where his lot is cast. That-
even when far removed from the refining influences which
encompass him in his native land, and thrown into intimate
relations with'inferior and uncivilized tribes, both he and
his children of a mixed race should still exhibit the providence, dignity and self-respect which seem innate in the
Scottish people, is surely a crucial instance of " the survival
of the fittest."
During the later years of the eighteenth century, the
prospect of serious rivalry from Canada stimulated the
Hudson Bay Company, as already observed, to renewed
exertions. The irregular way in which the fur-trade was
carried cm. by the Canadians led to many abuses, and after a
few years, it became unprofitable and almost ruinous to the
adventurers. They had the great Company well-organized,
and possessing ample governmental powers to contend with ;
the Indians were, for the most part, hostile and always
untrustworthy, and the time had obviously arrived for a
co-operative efforts by the Montreal traders. Accordingly,
in the winter of 1783-4, the Canadian merchants united together in a body corporate, known as the North-West Company, and the battle between it and the Hudson Bay people
began, which continued for thirty-eight years. At its
head as.managers were placed Messrs. Benjamin and Joseph
Frobisher, partners in one house, and Mr. Simon McTavish,
Ocean to Ocean, pp. 175, 176. 960
THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
& name which occupies a conspicuous place in the subsequent history of the North-West.   Unfortunately, there was
oonsiderable disagreement over the shares allotted to some
of the partners in the new company, and one of them, for a
time, succeeded in detaching Messrs. Gregory and Macleod
from their fellow adventurers.    In the counting-house of
the former, a clerk had served for five years, and was in
1784 seeking his own fortune at Detroit.   This young settler
was Alexander (afterwards Sir Alexander) Mackenzie, the
explorer of the North and West of British North America.
Mackenzie was a native of Inverness, born about 1760, who
early emigrated to America, and found employment at Montreal with Mr. Gregory.   He was now asked to become a
partner in the trading venture, and, having made his arrangements, set out for the Grand Portage in the spring of 1785.
The dissensions amongst the partners, the superior organization of the new company, and its determined hostility to
the recalcitrants, proved serious obstacles in Mackenzie's
way; but in 1787, the differences were healed, and a union
effected, much to the satisfaction of all parties.
The North-West chiefly followed upon the tracks of the
old French traders. These, as the reader will remember,
traversed two routes, the one by the lakes, by Fort Frontenac (Kingston), Niagara, Detroit, Mackinac and the Grand
Portage; and the other by the Ottawa, the French River,
St. Mary's (the Sault Ste Marie), and so westward to the
same point on Lake Superior. Sir Alex. Mackenzie boasts
that, after the union in 1787, the 1 commercial establishment
was founded on a more solid basis than any hitherto known
in the country; and it not only continued in full force, THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
961
vigour and prosper^7, in spite of all interference from Canada, but maintained at least an equal share of advantage
g O
with the Hudson Bay Company, notwithstanding the superiority of their local situation " (p. xx). " In 1788, the gross
amount of the adventure for the year did not exceed forty
thousand pounds; but, by the exertion, enterprise, and industry of the proprietors, it was brought in eleven years to triple
that amount and upwards; yielding proportionate profits
and surpassing, in short, anything known in America"
(p. xxii). It has been estimated that in 1815 this company
had four thousand servants in its employment, and occupied
sixty trading posts. A new route was opened on an old
Indian trail from Penetanguishene and Lake Simcoe to Lake
Ontario at first to the Humber Bay, and subsequently down
Yonge Street, the military road constructed by Col. Simcoe
to York (now Toronto) the Capital of Upper Canada. Westward the Company's operations extended to and beyOnd
the old French establishments on the Saskatchewan. Sir
Alexander Mackenzie names five chief factories on that
river—Nepawi House, South-branch House, Fort George
House, Fort Augustus   House, and Upper Establishment
(P-lxix). MR 1       H
But trading was not the only occupation of these adventurous Scots. They were the great explorers of Western
North America to the Pacific and Arctic Oceans. Mackenzie
himself was engaged in two great expeditions, during the
years 1789 and 1793. In the former year he started from
Fort Chipewyan at the western extremity of Lake Athabasca or the Lake of the Hills, as he terms it in his " Voy-
. ages " with a little band of retainers, Canadian and Indian. 962
THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
Travelling in a generally north-western direction by the
Slave River, the party entered the Great Slave Lake. Thence
with some vicissitudes of fortune, Mackenzie traversed the
chain of lakelets and streams to the Great Bear Lake, and
so to the great river which bears his name to the Arctic
Sea. In October, 1792, from the same starting-point, the
explorer ascended the Unjigah or Peace River which he
explored to its source, crossed the Rocky Mountains, and
made his way to the Pacific Ocean. The journey was full
of perils and perplexities, and at times even the brave Highland heart of Mackenzie seems to have sunk within him.
The story, as told by himself, in the simple and unaffected
language of his " iournal" is full of information regarding
the country, as it was when visited by him and his friend
Mackay. At the end of his weary journey of nine months,
he erected a simple memorial of his achievement. " I now
mixed up some vermillion in melted grease," he says, | and
inscribed, in large characters, on the south-east of the rock
on which we had slept last night, this brief memorial:
' Alexander Mackenzie, from Canada, by land, the twenty-
second of July, one thousand seven hundred and ninety-
three."1 He reached Fort Chipewayan, and safely relieved
Roderick Mackenzie, whom he had left in charge, and.
| resumed," as he modestly observes, | the character of a
trader," " after an absence of eleven months."
The character of the class which achieved so much for
British progress in the North-West could hardly be better
given than in the words of Mr. S. J. Dawson, then M.P.P.
for Algoma, uttered in the Ontario Legislature in 1876.
" At the formation of this (the North-West) Company, there THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
963
were in Canada a number of men remarkable for their
energy and enterprise. Many of those whose fortunes had
been lost at Culloden, and even some of the Scottish chiefs
who had been present at that memorable conflict, were then
in the country. They were men accustomed to adventure,
and had been trained in the stern school of adversity. They
joined the North-West Company, and soon gave a different
complexion to the affairs of the North-West. Under their
management, order succeeded to the anarchy which prevailed under the French regime. Warring tribes and rival
traders were reconciled. Trading posts sprang up on the
Saskatchewan and Unjiga; every post became a centre of
•civilization, and explorations were extended to the shores
of the Arctic Sea, and the coasts of the Pacific Ocean. It
has been the custom to ascribe to the Hudson Bay Company the admirable system of management which brought
peace and good government to the then distracted regions of
the North-West; but it was due to these adventurous
Scotchmen. Sir Alexander Mackenzie traced out the great
river which now bears his name, and was the first to cross
the Rocky Mountains and reach the Pacific Ocean. ; Fraser
followed the river now called after him, and a little later,
Thompson crossed further to the south, and reached Oregon
by the Columbia." It may be added that Vancouver explored
the British Columbian archipeligo, and gave his name to its
largest island in 1797, four years after Mackenzie's overland
journey. Simon Fraser—a name illustrious in war as well
as discovery — sailed down his river in the year 1808.
Thompson, who discovered the Columbia, which  rises in m
964 THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
British territory, gave his name to the Thompson River in
British Columbia.
All would have gone well with British trade and exploration, if the jealousies of the two rival companies and
of a third, the X. Y. which split off from the North-West
Company had not caused incessant turmoil and some bloodshed throughout the territory. The Hudson Bay Company
had the prior claim in point of time, and were not prepared
to tolerate competititors in the fur-trade, even in regions
where their employees had never set foot. Still less could
they brook the presence of intruders on the Assiniboine and
Red Rivers or Lake Winnipeg. The results of the jealousies
and animosities of these competing corporations were emi--
nently disastrous in every aspect. The fur-trade was almost
ruined, the Indians bought over and coaxed into alliance
by both parties and thoroughly demoralized. Mr. Hind, in
the work already cited (p. 280) observes that 1 the interests
of the Hudson Bay Company suffered to such an extent
that between 1800 and 1821, a period of twenty-two years,
their dividends were, for the first eight years, reduced to
four per cent. During the next six years they could pajr
no dividend at all, and for the remaining eight they could
only pay four per cent." It will now be necessarv to give
some account of these unhappy feuds, and also of the establishment of the Red River settlement by Lord Selkirk and
the troubles which arose in consequence. CHAPTER III.
THE EIVAL COMPANIES AND LORD SELKIRK.
Gsi
3TIN the year 1811, the bitter struggle between the Hud-
«"    son Bay Company on the one hand, and the North-
West and X. Y. Companies on the other, was brought to a
climax by an attempt to form the Red River settlement.
Thomas Douglas, Earl of Selkirk, obtained, in that year
from the Hudson Bay Company, a grant of land extending
from Lake Winnipeg to the height of land supposed to separate the waters running into the Hudson Bay from those
of the Missouri and Mississippi.*   Of the troubles which
ensued it is somewhat difficult to give an impartial account,
the story of the skirmishing and bloodshed which ensued
having been fully and rather acrimoniously narrated by those
interested on both sides.    As the belligerents were almost
all of Scottish birth, it will be necessary to enter into the
controversy at some length, but, so far as possible without
bias, or prepossession.  Certainly the perfervidum ingenium
Scotorum, of which George Buchanan spoke, never glowed
at a whiter heat than in these untoward events.
The central figure in this historical tableau is, of course,
Lord Selkirk, and concerning his motives and course of
* See Ballantyne: Hudson's Bay p. 99; Alexander Ross: The Red River Settlement,
pp. 8, 9; and Jos. J, Hargrave, F. R. G. S.: Red River, p. 70. J. C Hamilton : The Prairie Province, p. 194. 696 THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
action, an angry war of words has been waged even down
to our own day. To his friends and partizans he appears as
a disinterested, self-sacrificing patriot, having but one pur
pose in view-
-the elevation and advancement of his High
land fellow-countrymen; whilst his enemies are in the habit
of pourtraying him as a crafty, self-seeking and unscrupulous adventurer. The North-Western episode in his career
was the only stirring period in an otherwise uneventful life,
too early brought to a close. The few facts recorded about
him may be briefly given here.* Thomas Douglas, fifth
Earl of Selkirk, Lieutenant of the Stewartry of Kircudbright was the voungest of five sons—all of whom attained
adult age—of Dunbar, the fourth Earl, who died in 1799.
Thomas was born in 1774, and in 1807 married a Miss Col-
ville—a lady who became the mother of one son and two
daughters, and was with him during all his wanderings.
That he was a man of great vigour of mind, and indomitable
energy and perseverance, is clear both from his life and
writings. He is stated to have been exceedingly gentle and
affable in his manners, and whatever other virtues may be
denied him, he certainly was not wanting in goodness of
heart. In 1805, his Lordship's attention had been called to
the wretched condition of the Highlanders, and the result
was a work which reached a second edition in the following
year, entitled "Observations on the Present State of the
Highlands." His active mind was at once set to work upon
a scheme by which the pitiful, and almost degraded lot of
the Gaelic race might be ameliorated ; and he was soon con-
* See Morgan: Sketches of Celebrated Canadians and persons connected with Canada
p. 272 I THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
96*!
vinced that the remedy he sought was to be found in emigration. He was a large shareholder in the Hudson Bay
Company, and as many Highlanders had already been induced to enter its service, he conceived the idea of forming
a Highland colony in some fertile district of the North-
West. With him to form a plan was to take immediate steps towards its realization, and he therefore, after
inquiry and deliberation, entered into negotiations with the
Company for the purchase of the district he secured in 1811.
I About this time," writes Mr. Hargrave,* a compulsory
exodus of the inhabitants of the mountainous regions in the
County of Sutherland was in progress. The history of the
expulsion of a vast number of the poorer tenantry from the
estates of the Duchess of Sutherland, in which they and
their ancestors had vegetated in much idleness, semi-barbarism and contentment, from a traditionary era, to make way
for the working of the sterner realities of the system of
land management. which prevails on great estates in this
prosaic nineteenth century, is to this day fresh in the recollection of the remaining population of the extreme north of
Scotland. The pain with which the homeless exiles saw
the roofs which had sheltered them through life, removed
from the bare walls of their deserted habitations by the
merciless edict of irresistible power, has been retained in the
memory of the peasants of the north, and doubtless, the
adventures of many of the expatriated ones, after their
entrance on the untried vicissitudes of life in other lands
are known, and held in interest by the children of their
kindred in the country whence they came.
* Red River, pp. 72, 73. 968
THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
It was from these evicted peasants, whose abodes in
Sutherlandshire Lord Selkirk had visited, that he chiefly recruited what has been called 1 the first brigade" of his Red
River colonists. In the autumn of 1811 they reached the
shores of Hudson Bay, and wintered, in a season of exceptional severity, at Churchill, one of the Company's posts on
the western coast, in latitude 58°55// N. When the spring of
1812 opened, the emigrants proceeded inland to their destination on the Red River, where they arrived, after much suffering, only to be called on to face danger in another form.
Lord Selkirk had taken the precaution to submit the validity
of his title to the highest legal opinion in England, and it
was pronounced unimpeachable by Sir Samuel Romilly,
Scarlett, Holroyd, and other eminent counsel.* In accordance with his stipulations, his Lordship ultimately concluded
a treaty with the Chief and warriors of the Chippeway or
Saulteaux and Cree nations, by which the Indian claims upon
the settlement were extinguished."f Mr. Ross states that
the*Saulteaux had nd claim there at all, being aliens and intruders, since the Crees and Assiniboines "are, and have been
since the memory of man, the rightful owners and inhabitants of this part of the country." Lord Selkirk probably
desired only to provide for the security of his colony, and
was prepared to make terms with all Indian claimants; still
the jealousy of the Crees led to some disagreeable squabbles.
* This opinion is given In full as Appendix A in the " Statement respecting the Earl of
Selkirk's Settlement upon the Red River, in Nerth America," Sc. London: John Murray, 1817. For the loan of this work and others, as well as some interesting MS. letters of
Lord Selkirk and the Hudson Bay Macdonells, the writer has to express his thanks to Wm.
J. Macdonell, Esq., French Consul at Toronto.
t The full text will he found in Boss's Red River Settlement, p. 10, and is noteworthy he-
cause it probably formed the model for the compacts entered into, of late years, with the
Indians. THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
969
The Highland settlers, with some few Norwegians and
French, who drop out of the story thereafter, arrived at headquarters, the nucleus of the new settlement on the Red
River near its junction with the Assiniboine, in the summer
of 1812. This spot, which Lord Selkirk named Kildonan,
in. compliment to the Sutherlandshire colonists, stands on
the fiftieth parallel of north latitude, and as will be seen immediately it at once became the centre of a deadly struggle
between the rival companies.
That the North-West Company had valid grounds for suspecting mischief from the colonization of the Red River district seems clear. Their factors and servants met there face
to face with those of the Hudson Bay Company, and the
interests of Lord Selkirk and the latter were undeniably
identical. It was therefore not unnatural that the Canadians
should view with apprehension the establishment of a settlement, supplied with means of defence and claiming full
control over a region stretching from Lakes Winnipegoos,
Winnipeg, and the smaller chain to the eastward, far beyond
what was afterwards settled to be the United States boundary line by the Convention of 1818. They were thus shut
out from the great prairies of the west, and their hunters
could only repair thither by sufferance. Instead of isolated
posts, forts, or factories, they were threatened with an organized government, established, as they believed, for the
sole purpose of ruining their trade in furs. The statement
of Lord Selkirk that he had no end in view but the welfare
of his countrymen and of the Indians, and the permanent
foundation of a British Province over against the growing
and aggressive Republic to the south, the North-West Com- 970
THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
pany regarded,as a blind to conceal the insidious .purpose
which really lay beneath. It was in vain that the Earl protested the purity of his motives, pointed out the fact that
the buffalo and most of the fur-bearing animals had disappeared from the district, and displayed the preparations he
had made for bona fide settlement * The North-West Company at once repudiated the authority of Lord Selkirk and
his Governor, Miles Macdonell, formerly a Captain in the
Queen's Rangers, who came out in charge of | the first brigade " of Highlanders. They denied that the Hudson Bay
Company had any jurisdiction in the Red River country, or
that if they had, their jurisdiction could be delegated to any
individual or corporation. As already mentioned, Lord Selkirk had taken care to fortify himself with legal advice; to-
use his own words in the i Memorial," he " had previously
consulted several of the most eminent counsel in London,
who concurred in opinion that the title was unquestionably
valid ; and he has good reason to believe that a similar opinion has been expressed to his Majesty's Government by the
Attorney and Solicitor-General of England.""]* Acting on the
* Lord Selkirk, in his " Memorial to the Duke of Richmond, K.G., Governor General of
Canada," &c, bearing date October 1818, says,—"By the terms of the conveyance, your
memorialist was bound to settle a specified number of families on the tract of land conveyed to him: and your memorialist as well as all persons holding land under him were
debarred from interfering in the trade. Notwithstanding this restriction, your memorialist was early apprized that any plan for settling the country would be opposed with the
most determined hostility by the North-West Company of Montreal; and threats were
held out by the principal partners of that association in London, that they would excite
the native Indians to destroy the settlement," p. 3. For this " memorial," printed in
Montreal (1819), the writer is also indebted to the kindness of Mr. W. J. Macdonell.
t It is proper to observe, however, that the opinion of counsel did not extend to the disputed questions of civil and criminal jurisdiction delegated to Lord Selkirk; still they are
virtually covered by the right of the Company to appoint officers for the purpose, and Mr.
Milqs Macdonell received his appointment from tne Hudson Bay authorities directly, and
was therefore legally the Governor of Assiniboia. Seethe " statement" before quoted p.
2, Boss's Red River Settlement, p, 2$.   Hargraves Bed Biver, p. 74. THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA. 971
assurances thus given of his authority, Lord Selkirk, in
order to be on the safe side, named Mr. Miles Macdonell
the Company's Governor in the district as superintendent
of the settlement. Obviously, therefore, whatever constituted governmental authority there was in Assinoboia was.
vested in him, and commanded obedience until the Charter
of the Hudson Bay Company was pronounced invalid by
due process of law. Certainly the North-West Company
had no claims to any jurisdiction, civil .or criminal, either
by charter or statute. It was simply a voluntary association
of merchants—a co-partnership with nothing to back it but
the capital, energy and enterprise of its members.* It would
therefore seem to have been the duty of its proprietors and
servants to bow at once to any regularly constituted executive which had a prima facia claim to authority under the
crown.
But it was exactly here that the North-West Company
was met with an embarrassing selection between two alternatives. If the civil and military authority of the Hudson
Bay Company and its agents, and grantees were admitted
even for a season, all the mischief they had to fear might be
wrought. The great objection entertained by the Canadian
fur-traders was not so much to the legal status of the colony
as to its formation in any shape, particularly under the auspices of the Hudson Bay Company. According to the
I Statement," published on Lord Selkirk's side (pp. 7-10), the
* Sir Alexander Mackenzie, himself a North-Wester, frankly writes in his General History of the Fur Trade (p. xx):—" It assumed the title of the North-West Company, an*
was no more than an association of commercial men, agreeing among themselves to carry
on the fur trade, unconnected with any ether business, though many of the partners engaged, had extensive concerns altogether foreign to it." 222;
972
TffjE /Sfaor IW BRITISH NORTH 'AMERICA.
proprietory of the North-West Company protested against
any attempt at colonization, first on the sentimental ground
that the settlers would be placed " out of the reach of all
those aids and comforts which are derived from civil society,
and secondly, because colonization' is at all times unfavourable to the fur-trade." The pamphlets published by the
North-West Company appear to admit that this second
objection was, after all, the one which influenced them. In
the I Narrative of Transactions in the Bed River Country,"
written by Mr. Alexander Macdonell, and published in 1819,
■although reference is made to Lord Selkirk's " real, though
concealed purpose to transfer to himself, on the premeditated ruin of the North-West Company, the monopoly of their
trade," stress is laid upon the incompatibility of agricultural
settlement with fur-trading. Mr. Miles Macdonell's descriptions of the sufferings of the party that landed at
-Churchill in 1811, are enlarged upon, and the hope expressed
that people will, in future, be deterred * from completing
the measure of human misery, by embarking in this wretched and hopeless (!) speculation of Lord Selkirk's." But the
only serious objection to the settlement is very plainly set
forth in these words—where the writer is speaking of a
Royal Proclamation of fifty years before—1 a Proclamation
issued under the full conviction of the evils which must always attend any attempt to reconcile the interests of the
Agriculturist with the feelings and jealousies of the Indian
Hunters. These must retire from the country, which it is
necessary should be occupied by the farmer; and it will be
sufficient time (i.e. when Lord Selkirk's title should be adjudicated upon) to entertain the question of policy.    How THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA. 973
far it may be desirable to force agricultural establishments
in the Indian country, west of Lake Superior, when the wild,
unproductive lands of Upper Canada, are cultivated and
settled ? "* It is scarcely necessary to point out more directly
the answers of the North-West proprietary; at worst they
only did what the earlier monopoly strove earnestly to
effect during the major part of the century—keep out the
settler, retard the march of British civilization, and maintain,
in all its primaeval wildness, their vast game-preserve in the
North-West.
It must be remembered in justice to the North-West Com-
panj'-, that its trade had been built up in the face of determined opposition from the Hudson Bay Company, and that,
at every step of their progress, the Montreal traders had been
dogged and obstructed by the jealousy of their rivals. Although it was no doubt true, as Mr. Alexander Macdonell
avers, that in 1809, all was peace at the points where the
outposts of the companies met, there was far from being any
cordial friendship, and there had previously been some seasons of bitter contention. Lord Selkirk's advent did not altogether come like a peal of thunder from an azure sky. But
it unquestionably gave definite point to the conflict, and
brought the trade struggle to a rugged crisis. A glance at
the map prefixed to the " Narrative" already quoted, will
give some idea of the awkward and threatening predicament
in which the proprietors of the North-West Company found
themselves suddenly placed by the arrival of the settlers.
* Preface, pp. xviii. xix. This volume with other documerts relating to these troubles
as well as some valuable additional information inMSS.,have been kindly lentto the writtr
by Messrs. Allan and Alexander Macdonell, Tsqrs., near relatives of the North-Wett proprietor who wrote the "Narrative.'' 974 THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
Throughout the entire region conveyed to Lord Selkirk in the
Hudson Bay territory, the Montreal association had established posts already upon every river and lake. Commencing at
its N.W. angle in Lat. 52° N., and above it from Swan Lake
to Red River, on the Swan, Qu'Appelle, Souris, and Assini-
boine Rivers, they had a chain of not less than a dozen posts;
there was Fort Dauphin, the old French station on the lake of
that name; at the N.E. angle of the Selkirk tract, the Company had two forts on each side of Lake Winnipeg ; the entire country from Fort William by the Rainy Lake and the
Lake of the Woods was in its hands, and so was the whole
course of the Red River from the frontier to its mouth. The
Hudson Bay Company held only one fort of any importance, Fort Douglas, situated within a short distance of the
North-West Company's post of Fort Gibraltar, at the Forks,
i.e. at the confluence of the Red and Assiniboine Rivers,
.where the city of Winnipeg now stands. In short, the,
whole region thus made over to an individual by a parchment deed had for more than a quarter of a century been the
field in which the enterprise of the Scots of Montreal had
been displayed and from which its reward had been garnered
in; and, therefore, it was not at all astonishing that they
should resent the intrusion of the strangers, and resolve to
expel them, if possible, from a territory they had come to
consider as their own, by possession and prescription. It was
not in the nature of man, especially of that sturdy, energetic
and high-spirited type of humanity which had scoured the'
western wilds, with true Scottish enterprise to the Arctic
and the Pacific, to submit to what they regarded, justly cr
unjustly, as a conspiracy against their rights and privileges. THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
975
On the other hand, there is not the slightest ground for
crediting the allegations made in hot-blood against the honour and veracity of Lord Selkirk. Upon a calm review of
the story as told on each side, it seems impossible to hold
the Earl guilty of any worse offence than that of too great
eagerness in prematurely pressing forward an enterprise
purely honest and philanthropic, so far as he was concerned.*
His sympathy with the woes of the Highlanders was, beyond all question, deep, hearty and sincere, and it must have
been no ordinary love of his fellows which induced him, to
take his faithful and affectionate wife from the comforts of
home civilization, and travel along with her to the far-distant prairies of the west, solely to be with his poorer countrymen to advise them, to stimulate, to admonish, and to encourage. All his writings, public and private, breathe the
same spirit of broad humanity and brotherly kindness • and
so far as appears, although he was too high-spirited to submit to insult, he was not implacable in his resentments.
When his task was at length accomplished, he only retired
whilst yet in his prime, to yield up his life under a milder
sky. He died at Pau, in the south of France, aged forty-six,
in the year 1320.f To this slight view of the Earl's character, may be added the fact that so early as 1803, his Lordship figured as a promoter of Highland colonization.     In
* See an admirable summing up of the case for and' against jijm Lordship in Boss's Red
River Settlement, pp. 16-20.
t In a letter, dated from Montreal, Dec. 1st, 1815, lent to the writer by Mr. W. J. Macdonell
his Lordship gives ample proof both'of his shrewd intelligence in choosing his settlers and
his willingness to share all their hardships and dangers. A sentence or two must suffice:	
" I propose early next spring to go up with these people myself, which may serve as an
answer to any one who apprehends danger from the Indians; I think these men will be
satisfied when they know thafc|jti|p will be exposed to no danger, but such as I must share
with them."   MS. Letter addressed to Mr. Wm. Johnson ^Macdonell. 976
THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
I
that year, I he carried over to Prince Edward Island an important colony of 800 Highlanders. He made the necessary
arrangements with so much judgment that the settlers soon
became very prosperous, and with the friends who have since
joined them, now (1840) amount to upwards of 4,000." *
It is somewhat difficult to disentangle the truth from the
• contradictory accounts given by the rival interests of the
struggle which ensued after the landing of Lord Selkirk's
settlers. It may be remarked here that most of the modern
writers on Red River history take part with his Lordship,
and therefore, it may be as well to give their.version of the
story first. Mr. Miles Macdonell, Governor of Assiniboia,
arrived, as already stated, at the Forks, in 1812, with his
I first brigade," and they were at once met by unmistakable
signs of hostility. How far these menaces were carried, or
who the parties were that threatened the settlers, is not very
clear. Ballantyne states that the Indians were friendly ;
Hargrave alleges that they were hostile; and Ross seems to
be of opinion that many of them were disguised servants of
the North-West Company.f Well-nigh overcome with fatigue and starvation, they consented to accept their enemies
as a convoy, and to remove to Pembina.    Some childish
* An Historical and Descriptive account of British America, by Hugh Murray, F.B.S.E.
(American Edition, 1856), vol. ii. p. 95.
t Ballantyne: Hudson's Bay, p. 99. Hargrave: Red River, p. 74. Boss: Red River-
Settlement, p. 21. From the last-mentioned author the following may be quoted: " But a
few hours had passed over their heads in the land of their adoption when an array of armed
men, of grotesque mould, painted, disfigured, and dressed in the savage costume of the
country, warned them that they were unwelcome visitors. These crested warriors, for the
most part, were employ 6s of the North-West Company, and as their peremptorv mandate
to depart was soon aggravated by the fear of perishing, through want of food, it was resolved to seek refuge at Pembina, seventy miles distant, whither a straggling party, whom
they first took to be Indians, promised to conduct them. Lord Selkirk, in his "Memorial"
to the Duke of Bichmond (p. 4) does not hesitate to affirm that these troubles were caused
by the North-West Company, who succeeded in an attempt " to excite the jealousy o~. the
Indians." THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
>{{
practical jokes were played upon them en route, but no real
harm done, and they reached Pembina in safety. Here the
new settlers lived in huts or tents during the winter, their
food being the product of the chase. The Indians proved
friendly, and when, in May 1813, the settlers again set out
for the colony, they left their red friends with regret, convinced that they would not be hostile to white strangers, if
left to themselves. In 1813, the Kildonan settlement contained one hundred persons. In June, 1814, fifty more
arrived, and in the following September, they amounted to
two hundred. From the commencement of the winter of
1814-15 the colony was unmolested; the Indians became
friendly, but the Me'tis, Bois Brule's, or French half-breeds,
were sullen and disobliging. According to the " Statement"
already quoted, attempts had been made during all this time
■ to instigate the natives against the settlers," but as that
plan did not succeed, more incisive measures were adopted.
The growth of the settlement, and the anticipated arrival of
eighty or ninety additional emigrants from the Highlands
precipitated matters. In the summer of 1814, an annual
meeting was held of the North-West Company's partners at
Fort William, at which it was resolved to destroy the Selkirk settlement, Messrs. Duncan Cameron and Alexander
Macdonell being specially detailed to put the scheme in
execution.*    They arrived in due time at the Forks, and es-
* The following letter, written by Mr. Alex. Macdonell to a gentleman in Montreal, is
quoted in the " Statement" p. 11:-" You see myself and our mutual friend, Mr. Cameron,
so far on our way to commence open hostilities against the enemy in Bed Biver. Much is
expected from us, if we believe some—perhaps too much. One thiug is certain, that we will
do our best to defend what we consider to be our rights in theinterior. Something serious
will undoubtedly take place. Nothing but the complete downfall of the colony will satisfy
some, by fair or foul means—a most desirable end if it can be accomplished. So here is at
them with all my heart and energy." Mr. Alex. Kacdonell's version of the whole affair
will be given presently. ^S^Sg&Kggjgggjg
!1M
I hi
[
978 THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
tablished themselves at Fort Gibraltar, which was the North-
West Company's post there. Mr. Cameron is represented as
the active spirit in the movement—as ingratiating himself
with the Highlanders, talking Gaelic with them, and exciting their apprehensions by false stories of Indian hostility.
He is also charged with calling himself a captain in the
Voyageur Corps which had been disbanded two years before*
The proposition was made on behalf of the North-West
Company, to give the settlers a free passage to Canada (generally to Montreal), a twelvemonths' provisions gratis for
themselves and their families, an allotment of two hundred
acres of land, and every other encouragement they could
hope for.* This strategy proved, to a considerable extent,
•successful, but the cotony still remained, although depleted
in population. Lord Selkirk had provided some small pieces
of artillery and other arms, in case of attack, and the first
step was to obtain possession of these. Accordingly Mr.
Cameron sent a peremptory missive ordering them as "Captain, Yoyageur Corps," to be surrendered.-f- Failing this, an
armed party, which had been lying in ambush, rushed into
the Governor's House, whilst the fortnightly allowance of
provisions was being served out, seized the guns, and carried them off in triumph to the North-West dep6t. This
was the signal for open rupture between the settlers who
* Statement, p. 16.   Lord Selkirk's Memorial, p. 5.
t This missive, addressed to Mr. Archibald Macdonald, acting in the absence of Mr. Miles
Macdonell, ran thus: "As your field-pieces have already been employed to disturb the
peace of His Majesty's loyal subjects in this quarter, and even to stop up the King's highway I have authorized the settlers to take possession of them, and to bring them over
here, not with a' view to make any hostile use of them, but merely to put them out of
harm's way. Therefore, I expect that you will not be so wanting to yourself as to attempt
any useless resistance, as no one wishes to do you or any of your people any harm." Statement, p- 19. THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.        079
had resolved to remain, and those who had closed with the
offers of the North-West Company, and the latter went off
with the Government muskets, the arms Lord Selkirk had •
provided, and his implements of husbandry   At this time
Mr. Miles Macdonell returned, and was met by a warrant
issued on the information of one of the partners of the
Company, Mr. Norman McLeod, charging him with feloniously taking a quantity of provisions, the Company's pro-
pert}'-.    The Governor refused to acknowledge its validity,
and events began to assume a serious turn.    Mr. Alexander
Macdonell brought down a number of Cree Indians, and
these, with the half-breeds and North-West servants, prepared an attack.  Most of the settlers abandoned the colony
and formed a camp down the river.   On Sunday, June 11th
(Statement, p. 25), muskets were served out of the stores to
the Company's aervants, and soon after the force fired from
a neighbouring wood, upon passers-by.    The surrender of
Mr. Miles Macdonell was demanded, and he, to save the
effusion of blood, voluntarily surrendered, and was carried
off to Montreal to be tried, although no trial ever took place.
Finally, towards the end of June, 1815, the colony was completely brken up, and the remaining settlers escorted by
friendly Indians to a trading-post of the Hudson Bay Company at the other end of Lake Winnipeg.  On the following
day the North-West Company's servants " fired the houses,
the mill and  other buildings,  and burned them to the
ground."   A large portion of the " Statement" is taken up
with evidence that, although the Company attempted to
throw the blame of this raid exclusively upon the Indians,
it was planned, executed, and afterwards applauded, and its
4 1
080        TEE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
chief agents rewarded by them. To this statement of the
Red River case maybe added a few additional points urged
by Mr. Ross * He alleges that the ire of the North-West
Company was excited by a proclamation, issued by.Governor Miles Macdonell in 1814, which forbade the appropriation of provisions of all sorts for any use but that of the
colonists. This, it is urged, was necessary as a precaution
against famine, and was provoked by the treatment the
emigrants had received at Churchill. From that moment,
pillage and violence were the order of the day on both sides;
" provisions were taken and retaken," and affairs went from
bad to worse, until the struggle culminated in the destruction of the infant colony after a series of encounters in
which several persons were wounded, Mr. Warren killed r
and Governor Macdonell made prisoner.
It is now time to turn to the other side of the story, as it
is detailed by Mr. Alexander Macdonell in his 1 Narrative."
He asserts that Lord Selkirk; and and his coadjutors were
from the first hostile to the North-West Company, and fellow conspirators, with the Hudson Bay Company against it.
So far from its being true that he and his fellow-partners
were unkind to the settlers, Mr. Macdonell says that he
pitied the poor people who had passed such a severe season
of cold and want, and supplied them with provisions from
the stores. He declares that Mr. Miles Macdonell was not
satisfied with what he saw at the Forks, and that he voluntarily made choice of Pembina as his head-quarters; that he
assisted his namesake with advice as to the erection of
buildings; and frequently supplied his people with provis-
* Red River Settlement, pp. 24-29. THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA. 981
ions frem the stores. He affirms further, that, so far from
inciting the Indians, who were enraged at what they considered the intrusion of the settlers, he endeavoured to appease
them. The movement to Pembina Mr. Macdonell represents
as a necessity, however the colonists found it impossible to
snbsist at the Forks. He charges Mr. Miles Macdonell with
trading, though one Francois Delorme, in peltries with the
natives, " contrary to his own repeated and voluntary professions of not interfering with the Fur Trade*
Mr. Miles Macdonell is there accused of base ingratitude.
So soon as the. winter was at an end, the Governor is represented as trying to pick a quarrel with the company, because he knew they were embroiled with, the Americans,
and also because he thought he could now be independent
of their assistance. After the removal from the Forks in
May, both Mr. Alexander Macdonell and the Hon. William
McGillivray continued to aid the colonists in every way. In
1814, news having arrived of the capture of the British fleet
on Lake Erie in September of the previous year, Mr. Miles
Macdonell, according to the "Narrative," aimed a deadly
blow at the Company by the proclamation already mentioned. The traders were alarmed at the prospect of being cut
off from Canada by the Americans, and this step on the part
of the Governor increased their embarrassment.    At the
* To this the author adds: "I mention this circumstance, not because we had any right
to object to Lord Selkirk's agents carrying on the fur trade, although they mijht have abstained from opposing us at the particular place and moment when we were straining every
nerve to feed, protect and support the wretched emigrants who had been deluded by the
falsehoods published in Great Britain, to leave their homes on this desperate undertaking,
but because I have heard.it stated that his Lordship views were completely and entirely
unconnected with objects of trade; whereas they have always appeared to us iu the country, from the measures adopted since his Lordship's connection with the Hudson Bay-
Company, as the principal inducement that led to that connection.—Narrative., &c. pp.
11, 12. IP
982
THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
same time he is charged with seducing some of the North-
West clicks, notably one Aulay McAulay, who told the men
under him the Governor was appointed by a great lord, and
that if he ordered it, the settlers had a right to demand the
Company's provisions. There were spies in every fort, and
the Governer is charged with the design of seizing all the
Company's stores and provisions. He is charged further
with planting his cannon on the river, with a view of intercepting and plundering two bateaux laden with provisions.
Not content with that he obstructed the highroad, took as
prisoners Canadian hunters and half-breeds quietly pursuing
their ordinary avocations. And so on runs the i Narrative"
of Mr. Alexander Macdonell over a long list of grievances
and outrages it is not necessary to give in detail.
The dispersion of the Colony in 1815, the author of this
brochure lays entirely at the door of the Governor. He
affirms that on the 10th of June—and this was only the last
of many similar unprovoked attacks—a party of Half-breeds
returning to their camp were assailed wantonly by the colonists and Hudson Bay Company's servants. They replied
by firing a volley, and were only kept from perpetrating a
general massacre, by. Mr. Alexander Macdonell's expostulations. He solemnly denies that either he or Mr. Donald
Cameron had anything to do with the attack. He admits
that some of Mr. Cameron's men dug a closer ditch round
the settlement; but that was only to protect those detailed
to serve the warrant on Mr. Miles Macdonell, from the fire
of the colonists. His conclusion, so far as the affair of 1815
is concerned, seems to be briefly condensed in one paragraph
(p. 39):—" The burning of some buildings afterwards, and THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
983
the dispersion of the few settlers who remained, were entirely
the acts of the injured and irritated Half-breeds, who now
considered the colony as hostile to their tranquillity."
To return now to the statement issued by the Selkirk
party. So soon as quiet was restored, the settlers who had
removed to Lake Winnipeg, with a dogged persistence characteristic of their race, made their way back to their lands
and made preparations for re-establishing the colony. During the previous year vague rumours had reached Lord Selkirk of impending danger to the settlement from the Indians.
He immediately set out to support the settlers by his presence, and had reached New York, when he received intelligence of I the dispersion of the colonists and the destruction of the settlement." On his Lordship's arrival at Montreal, he ascertained that the Indians had not been at the
bottom of the troubles; he found that those settlers who had
confided in the promises of the North-West Company had
been deceived; and learning that the other settlers had returned to Kildonan, he despatched a letter promising his
presence and assistance. His messenger, however, was waylaid and robbed of his papers. The Earl's next step was to
endeavour to procure from Sir Gordon Drummond, the Administrator of the Government of Canada from 1811 to 1816,
a small military force for the protection of the colony, but
without success. In the spring of 1816, affairs having again
assumed a threatening aspect, a second application was made
with no better result * The Administrator appears to have
thought, probably with justice, that there had been faults
* A lengthy correspondence took place between the Earl and his Excellency which will
be found in the Statement pp. 53-57 . 984        THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
on both sides, and he was backed by Lord Bathurst, the
Colonial Secretary, in refusing to interpose. Lord Selkirk
protested that the outrages had not been "mutual," as had
been alleged, " but all on one side," and urged upon the authorities the imminent danger there was of bloodshed ] but
in vain. Sir Gordon Drummond disbelieved the Earl's version of the story, made light of his apprehensions, and plainly
took the Company's part.*
The indefatigable founder of Red River settlement being
thus thrown upon his own resources, at once began to collect
an efficient band of settlers, with a view, at the same time
I of materially adding to its strength and security," he enlisted in its service, and supplied with arms, about a hundred
disbanded officers and soldiers who had served in the American war. He had only reached the Sault Ste. Marie with
his men, when his advance party fell back with the intelligence that a massacre had taken place, and that the settlement was, for the second time, broken up. Under the protection of the Hudson Bay Company, the settlers had been
brought back a distance of three hundred miles from the
north end of Lake Winnipeg to Kildonan. At this juncture
a fresh body of Highlanders arrived by way of Hudson Bay,
and, as Mr. Ross remarks,-}- | gloomy and portentous was
the prospect before them. The smoky ruins, the ashes
scarcely yet cold, were all that remained to mark the progress
* In a letter to the Montreal partners, his Secretary, Col. Harvey was instructed to say
that his queries had been "answered in'such a way by Mr. McQillivray in such a manner
as would have removed from his Excellency's mind all traces of any impression unfavourable to the honourable character, and liberal principles of the North-West Company, had
any such impression existed," pp. 55, 56. The Hon. Mr. McGillivray was at this time a
member of the Lower Canada Executive Council—a sworn adviser of Sir Gordon, and in his
confidence.
tRed River Settlement, p. 32. THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
985
of their unfortunate predecessors, and from the general appearance of things around them, they had but little reason
to expect a better fate." The arrival of this new batch of
immigrants, as well as the return of the old settlers, naturally re-kindled the strife of the former year. The colonists
were allowed no rest; in place of quietly settling upon the
lands allotted, they were harassed and driven to Pembina,
to prairie lands on the Missouri, or to the shores of the great
lakes. Still a remnant clung, with desperate pertinacity to
the Red River, and it seemed necessary to take strong measures to dislodge them. If the " statement" is to be believed,
the complicity of the North-West proprietors and servants
in these untoward events is clear.* In spite of all their protestations to the contrary, it is quite evident that all the
dependents of this Company rejoiced at the assembling of
the Bois BruUs, and that some of them instigated it. One
•clerk, Cuthbert Grant, himself a Half-breed, wrote, " The
Half-breeds of Fort des Prairllp and English River are all to
be here in the spring, it is to be hoped we shall come off
with flying colours, and never see any of them again in the
colonizing way at Red River" (p. 73). The affidavits of
Painbrun and Blondeau (Append, p. xxxiii. and xliv.), if they
are-not rank perjury, distinctly fasten the charge of collecting thev Half-breeds upon Alexander Macdonell, Norman
* The following passage in a letter written by Mr. Alex. Macdonell from river Qu'Appelle
to Mr. Duncan Cameron at the Forks is quoted; it bears date 13th of March, 1816: " I re
mark with pleasure the hostile proceedings of our neighbours, I say pleasure, because the
more they do, the more justice we will have on our side. A storm is gathering in the
North ready to burst on the rascals who deserve it; little do they know their situation.
Last year was but a joke. The nation under their leaders are coming forward to clear their
native soil of intruders and assassins. Glorious news from Athabasca," p. 71. The " glorious news " was an unfounded rumour that a band of Hudson Bay Company's traders iu
Athabasca, had almost perished from starvation, and had been compelled to resort to cannibalism, p. 72. 986
THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
McLeod, Alexander Mackenzie, John Duncan Campbell, and
John Macdonald of the North-West Company. The first
named on the other hand, pronounces these affidavits absolutely false and accuses Lord Selkirk of being guilty of
subornation of perjury.
Governor Semple, of the Hudson Bay Company, arrived
at Red River in the spring of 1816.    In April, he sent Mr.
Pambrun to the Hudson Bay post on the Qu'Appelle ; when
he arrived, he found the " Brule's " collected in force at the
adjacent fort of the North-West Company.    On the 12th of
May, whilst proceeding down the river with a large quantity of furs and pemican, the property was seized and the
crews made prisoners, as Pambrun affirms, by the order of
Mr. Alex. Macdonell—an order which he did not hesitate to
avow.    The same party, reinforced by others, in all about
seventy, set out to attack Red River; and on the 20th of
June a messenger came in from its leader, Cuthbert Grant,
I who reported that his party had killed Governor Semple
with five of his officers, and sixteen of his people; upon
which Macdonell, Seraphim Lamar, and all the other officers,
shouted with joy."*    The unfortunate Governor was on the
point of returning from Red River to York Factory when he
met his death.  He had received information of the intended
assault from two Cree Indians who had escaped from the
attacking party, and took some precautions against a surprise.   On the 19th of June, according to Mr. Pritchard, who
escaped, tidings were brought of the approach of the half-
i The writer of the " Statement" (p. 79) goes on to say: " Macdonell then went to the
rest of the men who had remained with him, and announced to them the news in language
(as sworn to by Mr. Pambrun) which we will not attempt to translate: " Sacre nom de Dieu I
Bonnes nouvelles !   Vingt-deux Ahglois de tu6s!"    "Good news, twenty-two English
killed." THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
98f
breeds. The Governor presuming, naturally, that they were
about to attack the settlement, said, " We must go out and
meet these people; let twenty men follow me." Finding
the half-breeds more numerous than he had supposed them
to be, he ordered out a field-piece. The enemy, on horseback,
had their " faces painted in the most hideous manner, and
in the dresses of Indian warriors, they came forward and
surrounded us in the form of a half-moon."-!- Both parties
were now on what was *known as Frog Plain, between Fort
Douglas and Kildonan. Governor Semple called out, "What
do you want ? " The answer was, " We want our fort! |
to which the Governor rejoined, " Go to your fort." Both
Boucher, the half-breed spokesman, and Mr. Semple were
close together by this time, and Pritchard failed to catch
what followed. The Governor, however, laid his hand on
Boucher's arm, and immediately shots were fired on both
sides, though which began the murderous work seems indeterminable. " With the exception of myself," says Pritchard, I no quarter was given to any of us. The knife, axe or
ball, put a period to the existence of the wounded; and on
the bodies of the dead were practised all those horrible barbarities which characterize the inhuman heart of the savage.
The amiable and mild Mr. Semple, lying on his side (his
thigh was broken), and supporting his head upon his hand §
(p. 84), asked Mr. Cuthbert Grant to try and get him to the
fort, as he was not mortally wounded. The unfortunate
gentleman was left in charge of a Canadian, who afterwards
told how an Indian came up and shot the Governor through
the breast.    Out of a band of twenty-eight, twenty-one
Pritchard s testimony in the " Statement," p. 82, 83. 388 THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
were killed and one wounded. It is unnecessary to attempt
an analysis of the trials which subsequently took place at
York, now Toronto, in October and November, 1818. Paul
Brown and F. F. Boucher were indicted for murder, John
Siveright, Alexander Mackenzie, Hugh McGillis, John Mac-
donald, John McLaughlin, and Simon Fraser as accessories,
and John Cooper and Hugh Bannerman for stealing field-
pieces, the property of the Earl of Selkirk. All the prisoners were acquitted by the juries which tried their respective
•cases. Finally, at a Court of Oyer and Terminer held at
■Quebec, by Chief Justice Sewell, on the 26 th October, 1819,
| appointed for the investigation of cases from the Indian
Territories," Arch. McLeod, Simon Fraser, James Leith, Alex.
Macdonell, Hugh McGillis, Arch. McLellan, and John Sive-
right, of the North-West Company, " who were under accusation by the Earl of Selkirk, as private prosecutor, for
.great crimes and offences " appeared and demanded a trial,
■ which they could not obtain because the private prosecutor was not ready."*
Mr. Alexander Macdonell, in his Narrative, points triumphantly to the result of the York trials, and urges the
prompt acquittal of all the prisoners as strong proof that
the Company and its servants were not to blame. These
proceedings were certainly conducted with great patience
and the strictest regard to justice, and the juries could
hardly have come to any other verdicts considering the
mass of conflicting evidence laid before them. Only one
thing seems certain, amidst a maze of bewildering uncertainty, and that is that the French half-breeds, at all events,
Report of the Proceedings, &c, from minutes taken in Court.   Montreal, 1819] THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
989
had very little regard for the sanctity of an oath. There
was a great deal of false swearing, doubtless, on both
sides; and an impartial reader can hardly fail to come to
the conclusion that both sides were grievously in the wrong
from the first. A large number of exceedingly arbitrary
acts are charged against Mr. Miles Macdonell and his party
in the Narrative, and their mode of administering such gov-
ernmental and judicial powers as they claimed to possess
was, beyond question, harsh and arbitrary at times. Still
the apology offered in the Preface of the Narrative is, to
some extent, serviceable for the one party as well as the
other. With regard to the closing scene, Mr. Alexander
Macdonell stoutly denies the party encountered so unhappily by Governor Semple had any hostile design. He states
that Cuthbert Grant's party of half-breeds were detailed by
him to convey provisions to a point twelve miles or more
below the Colony (p. 75). His instructions were to proceed
down Red River to Passage, a place nine or ten miles above
the settlement, to secrete the canoes, load the carts with the
provisions, and proceed by land to their destination. They
were to behave | in an orderly and peaceful manner, avoiding if possible, being discovered or seen by the Hudson Bay
people and settlers; to keep at as great a distance as possible from Forts Gibraltar and Douglas ] to avoid the settlement in like manner, and upon no account to molest any of
the settlers " (p. 76). Mr. Macdonell affirms, and points to
the evidence on the trials in proof, that his injunctions were
strictly obeyed by Grant and the party, and the detour they
actually made is indicated on a map of the district. He
maintains that the unhappy events of the 19th of June were 990
THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
occasioned by an unprovoked and unlooked for attack upon
Cuthbert Grant and his people by Mr. Semple and his followers.    He adds that " His Majesty's Commissioner, who
lately visited Red River, has ascertained by his enquiries
and examinations, who were the aggressors and assailants on
that deplorable occasion." *    It would be useless as well as
unprofitable,  to   attempt   to   reconcile   these   conflicting
accounts or strike a balance between them.     Mr.  Ross
states that, 1 in the country where the murders took place,
there has never been a shadow of doubt, but rather a full
and clear knowledge of the fact that the North-West party
did unquestionably fire the first shot, and almost all the
shots that were fired," -f- but that is, after all, a question of
comparatively little importance. Both parties were no doubt
excited beyond control, and the fatal issue was not foreseen,
or even desired by either of them.    Governor Semple's advance, with so small a force, was certainly imprudent, although it serves to show that he never conceived the sanguinary design attributed to him.    The North-West Company were unquestionably hostile to the colony, and that for
reasons solid and substantial enough, apart from the notion
that settlement was merely a mask to cover rivalry in the
fur-trade.    Colonization and the fur-trade, as the partners
saw plainly, could not co-exist in the same region, and the
North-Westers   only   inaugurated the   policy afterwards
* Mr. Alex. Macdonell, without directly noticing the charge advanced by Mr. Pambrun
against himself personally {Statement, p. 79), quoted in a previous note, admits that an exclamation of surprise something like that alleged may have been uttered, but it must hare I
been one of surprise, not of exultation (Narrative, p. 78). The " bonnes nouvelles," good
news however, drop out; and singularly enough Mr. Macdonell says nothing about the.
letters alleged to have been written before the conflict,
t Bed fiiver Settlement, pp. 36, 37. THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA. 991
adopted by the Hudson Bay Company all over the North-
West.    Moreover, some natural jealousy was excited at seeing an organized government, the title of which was disputed, set up under the auspices of the rival monopoly in
territory which the North-West Company had hitherto regarded as peculiarly their own.    It would appear that the
rule of the first Governor was not of a mild and conciliating
type, and that, on both sides, there was an amount of irritability and an uncomprising temper which boded ill fur the
peace and prosperity of the country.    Causes of quarrel naturally arose day after day;   charges  and recriminations
were exchanged; then followed arbitrary arrests, the seizure
of property, and the obstruction of business and travel, until
the climax was reached in the lamentable catastrophe of
June, 181b'.     It would not be just to  scan too closely, or
gauge by too rigid a standard the moral character of the
agents in these turbulent scenes.     Removed far from the
comforts, as well   as the discipline of civilized  life, both
the trader ai\d the colonist are entitled to indulgent consideration.    The  toil, suffering and  hardship which made
their daily lot, were stern tutors in whose curriculum the
milder arts of civilization found no place.    In daily contact
with savages, and the hardly less untrustworthy half-breeds,
it was inevitable that they should be affected by the rough
and unruly freedom of their environment.     Between the
parties, there was probably not much to choose ; the burden
of responsibility for the unhappy struggle of these early
years can not be adjusted by the men of to-day, and they
may be well content to forget the errors of those early pioneers in admiration for the invincible energy and persever- lillf
iC"'1,
ii m
jjjT III
nil
992 THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
ance which distinguished those hardy Scots on both sides,
and secured for the Empire that broad and priceless Dominion which stretches from sea to sea.
It only remains to gather the threads of the narrative,,
up to the final pacification. The commissioner whose report
is appealed to so triumphantly by Mr. Alex. Macdonell, was
the Hon. Wm. B. Coltman, who like Mr. McGillivray, the
North-West partner, was a member of the Executive Council
of Lower Canada * A report from that source could hardly
be regarded as satisfactory by the colonists, and it is not
surprising to find in the ' Memorial' by Lord Selkirk, some
severe strictures upon | His Majesty's Commissioner." He
is charged with starting the theory that the acts of the
half-breeds were only " venial irregularities," and not " robberies, felonies and murders, in the usual acceptation of
these words."*f" It was not antecedently probable that a colleague of Mr. McGillivray who was himself concerned on
one side should find sufficient evidence to lay blame upon
the other side ; but his report is necessarily less satisfactory
on that account, and by no means entitled to the weight Mr.
Alex. Macdonell accords it.
Lord Selkirk had lost his " mercenaries" at the Sault Ste.
Marie; but after sending a strong report of the massacre to
Sir J. C. Sherbrooke, the Governor of Lower Canada, he at
once made his way to Red River. A calm, comparatively
speaking, had succeeded the storm ;   but the affairs of the
* Major Fletcher, Police Magistrate and Chairman of Quarter Sessions at Quebec, was
also of the Commission ; but he either did not go up to the North-West, or was a cipher.
All the references in Lord Selkirk's Memorial are to Coltman, and, as already seen Mr,
Alex. Macdonell speaks of " one Commissioner only."
t Memorial: pp. 62-68. THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
99$
colony were in a deplorable condition. The immigrants had
been almost constantly in a state of migration from the
settlement to Pembina, to the Missouri, or to Norway House,
and other forts or factories of the Hudson Bay Company,
and back again. His lordship, it seems, set himself to the
task of restoring order. He called a meeting of the people,
I on the west bank of Red River, some' two miles below Fort
Garry, and in consideration of the losses, hardships, and misfortunes they had from time to time suffered, he made them
several concessions." Those who had lost all received fresh
grants of land and immediate relief. .Buildings were erected,
including a mill, and an edifice which served the double purpose of church and school-house. Roads, bridges, &c, were
settled, and seed-grain distributed to the necessitous. Having thus started the colony, which had cost him so much in
means, as well as anxiety, once more on the path of progress,
Lork Selkirk took his final leave of it, and retired as we
have seen to die in a foreign land.
The settlers who had crops upon their land met with the
bounteous return which nature yields in that fertile region;
but, unfortunately, too little seed had been sown, and, as winter approached, rather than consume all, and ruin their prospects for the next year, many of the colonists again left for
Pembina to live by the chase. There they suffered hardship
in another shape, but they returned again to their old homes
in the spring. The year 1818 was an unfortunate one, in
all respects. " Food was scarce, their hitherto precarious dependence on fish, herbs and roots, became hopeless, for all
those failed j and their misfortunes were crowned by an act
of lawless violence on the part of the North-West people, who PI I
994 THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
forcibly carried off Mr. Sutherland to Canada."* Still agriculture began to progress henceforward.    In July, 1818, however, just when the crops were ripening to the harvest, a
cloud of grasshoppers appeared from the west, darkening the
.air I in one night " crops, gardens, and every green herb in
the settlement had perished with the exception of a few
ears of barley, gleaned in the women's aprons.    This sudden
And unexpected disaster was  more than they could bear.
The unfortunate  emigrants, looking   up  towards  heaven,
wept."t    There was nothing for it but to return with heavy
hearts to Pembina and pass the winter there as best they
■could.    Early in the spring of 1819, the hardy and persevering Scots left their families behind and returned to sow
their land.    They had no seed save the scanty supply saved
by the women.   Again their hopes were blasted, this time by
the swarms produced from the larvaa deposited in the previous year.    By the latter end of June the country was covered with them, for, " they were produced in masses two,
three, and, in some places near water, four inches deep.   The
water was poisoned with them   Along the river they were
to be found in heaps, like sea-weeds, and might be shovelled
with a spade. \
Again the land was desolated, and the settlers were forced
to return to the precarious life of Pembina. There they resolved to provide seed. Wheat in abundance at all events
and men were dispatched to Prairie du Chien on the Missis-
I Ross, p. 47, Mr. Sutherland had been ordained an Elder of the Presbyterian Church in
Scotland, and, in the absence of a settled pastor had been specially licensed to celebrate
marriages, administer the sacraments and officiate at burials. His abduction therefore
was not only an outrage, hut a very serious deprivation to the colony.
ilbid. p. 48.
X Ibid. p. 49. THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.        995
sippi to obtain it.    They returned with 250 bushels, and,
then, making their way back in flat-boats to the colony; the
settlers finally found rest there in June, 1820.   " From that
day to this," writes Mr. Ross, in spite of the grasshoppers
and other evils, Red River has not been without seed for
grain.    The troubles of the colonists were not yet over, but
a, sufficiently ample sketch of their trials and struggles has
been given to enable us to judge what the Scot can do,
and endure, and has effected in the heart of the American
continent.    Should any one be disposed to make light of
the dogged perseverance, the exhaustless energy, the long-
suffering patience and thrift of the Scot, one has only to
refer him to the history of Red River settlement.
Meanwhile the fur companies went on in their ruinous
career of competition and rivalry until they had between
them almost ruined the trade, and brought the treasuries to
bankruptcy. What with plots and counter-plots with the
Indians, the stirring up of the half-breeds to rapine and insolence, and the constant overlapping of their operations,
these corporations had made the fur trade so precarious,
that it had ceased to be profitable. The Hudson Bay Company pointed to its charter, and stigmatized the North-
Westers as poachers, or at least interlopers upon their domain. The Montreal Company on the other hand denied
the validity of the Charter, and pleaded that so far it had
been virtually voided by non-user. It may be observed
that it had periodically been a matter of dispute whether
the granting of such a charter came within the Royal Prero-
0 ©
gative.   The Company, at its inception, had evidently supposed that it   required parliamentary  sanction, since an
5 996
THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
Act, which was never renewed, had been passed, confirming
Charles's grant for seven years and no longer. In 1749, a
bold attempt was made in the House of Commons to destroy
the monopoly on the ground that the Company had failed to
attempt the'disco very of a North-West passage, but the motion did not prevail.* Still the North-West Company had
certainly a right to dispute the validity of so sweeping a
grant, and the contest then begun was continued down to
the purchase of the Company's exclusive rights in 1870.
Meanwhile, everything was in a state of confusion and uncertainty, and both Companies were almost on the verge of
bankruptcy, when, by a lucky inspiration, the plan of amalgamation was devised and put into execution in 1821.
* Hugh Murray : British America, Vol. II„ p. 186. CHAPTER III.
THE   UNION  OF  THE   COMPANIES.
JHE more serious difficulties of the Red River settlement had now disappeared The importation of
seed-wheat, which had cost Lord Selkirk no less than
£1,040 sterling, and the cessation for the time of the grass-
' hopper plague, had left the colonists in greater ease and
contentment than they had known in their native land.
The prolonged period of suffering from that first terrible
winter at the mouth of the Churchill, the conflicts, the
want and the constant Sittings to and from Pembina,
were over, and the sturdy Highlanders at last enjoyed peace
and plenty in the land of their adoption. But the jealous
rivalry of the Companies still raged with unabated virulence, and it speedily became evident that unless some
scheme of conciliation were devised, each of them would
ruin the other. The Hon. Mr. Coltman, the commissioner
referred to in the last chapter, urgently advocated a consolidation of the concerns and their interests, as the only
method of improving the deplorable state of things then
prevailing. The strife so long carried on was, says Mr.
Murray, perhaps the most furious ever waged "between
two mercantile bodies, destructive alike to the interests of
both, and most demoralizing to the savage aborigines."*
* Hugh Murray : British America, Vol. II. p, 235. 998
THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
The North-West Company, whatever be thought of its
somewhat unscrupulous eagerness to advance and extend
the trade it directed, was unquestionably the more enterprising and adventurous of the two.- Until the Montreal
traders began to appear in the field, the Hudson Bay people never made much progress beyond those great inland
waters which were peculiarly their own. The North-
Westers on the other hand, struck at once boldly across
the fertile belt, and descended by the Fraser, the Thompson and tht Columbia to the Pacific. They were the
great explorers of British Columbia, and whatever zeal
in the path of discovery its rivals afterwards displayed,
was due mainly to the new energy infused into the body
corporate by their old antagonists. But the North-West
Company had attempted too much with its limited capital,
and was no match for the old establishment. The consequence was that both parties were disposed to concur in
any plan of coalition, framed upon an equitable basis.*
The arrangement by which the Companies were united in
March, 1821, was exceedingly fair and acceptable to both
parties. The North-West made over its property to the
Hudson Bay Company, and in return, the members of the
former became partners, and its servants taken into the employment of the consolidated Company.    The X. Y. Com-
* Mr Murray writes: ' 'At length the North-We3t Company, in consequence of their over-
'strained exertions, became involved beyond their capital; and being obliged t>> yield to
their rivals, they obtained in 1821 an honourable capitulation.'' This seems hardly fair to
the North-West Company, for both parties in fact capitulated to the invincible foiceof
necessity. The same author quotes from Mr. Harmon, aNorth-Wett clerk tome account
of the extent of this Company's trade. Harmon, who was an American, cross d to the
Peace River and Athabasca districts in 1808. The e at Fort Dunvegan, he was vUiten by
three cf the ycottish pioneers, Messrs McLeod, Fraser and Stnarr, " on th.ir way 10 and
from the establishments lately formed by the Company in Now Caledonia" as it might
still be ojdled—'' on the western side of the Rocky Mountains.''   Ibid. ii. pp. 199-206.
■ THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA. 999
pany had combined with the North-West years before, so
that now at last there was an end both to rivalry in trade
and to deeds of rapine and violence. An Imperial Act
was passed by the Parliament, at the instance of Mr. Ellice
—a name familiar in Hudson Bay annals—in which the
rights and privileges of the new. Company were defined and
the territory east and west of the Rocky Mountains not included in their charter was granted for a period of twenty^
one years.* The first Governor of the Hudson Bay Company after the union was Mr. (afterwards Sir) George Simpson, who filled that responsible office for nearly forty years
from 1820 until his death in 1860.
There were two persons,.near relatives named Simpson—
both Scotsmen—who played a conspicuous part in the
North-West. Thomas Simpson was a scientific man and an
explorer of no mean order, whose career seems to deserve
special notice here. After the termination of Captain Back's
extended voyage of discovery, Mr. Dease, the chief factor,
and Mr. Thomas Simpson, were commissioned by Governor
Simpson to explore the northern coast in 1836. Thomas
Simpson had been previously engaged on missions of a similar description, and he was now instructed to " spend the
ensuing winter at Fort Chipewyan on Great Slave Lake;
and in the beginning of summer, five of the party were to
proceed to the north-west end of Great Bear Lake and there
prepare accommodation and provisions for their next winter
quarters. The remainder were to employ the favourable
season in descending the mouth of the Mackenzie River,
and thence along the coast until they reached the point
Hargrave : Red River, p. 79. 1000
THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
where Captain Beechey had been arrested."* Provision
was made for the possible contingency of travel after abandoning their boats, and at the approach of winter, they
were to repair to their winter quarters already in readiness
for them. In 1838, the Coppermine River was to be crossed,
and the party were to make their way to Points Turnagain
and Richardson. On the 9th of July, 1837, the first part of
the plan was accomplished, when the party reached the
Mackenzie River, and on the 20th they arrived at Foggy
Island Bay, the furthest point attained by Franklin. Thenceforward all their progress was in the path of new discovery.
After finding a new branch of the Rocky Mountains, their
path lay along the shore which was low and composed for
the most part of frozen mud, on which were seen the mouths
of several large rivers. At length, when they could only
advance at the rate of four miles a day, the plan of the party
was changed. Thomas Simpson, with a party of five men,
resolved to perform the rest of the journey on foot. Carrying with them a portable canoe for crossing rivers, they
made their way, with the occasional assistance of an Esquimaux "comiak" when they came to a broad inlet. Early
in August they came in sight of Point Barrow. " The ocean,
extending to the southward, presented so inviting a prospect that, had such been their object, they would not have
hesitated, in their skin canoe, to have made for Cook's
Inlet."f The remainder of this Arctic expedition was
equally fruitful in results. But, unhappily, poor Simpson
met his fate, not long after, whilst returning with the valu-
* Murray: British America, vol. ii. p. 233.
t Ibid., p. 234. THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.        1001
able results of his arduous labours. In the latter end of
1839 or early in 1840, several of a party of Red River half-
breeds, with whom he had set out with a view of crossinff
the plains to St. Louis, Mo., returned to the Settlement and
stated that Mr. Simpson had, in a fit of insanity, killed two
of his men and then shot himself, and that they had buried
him on the spot where he fell. The theory of suicide for
some time prevailed, but those who knew the unhappy traveller best entirely rejected the idea. His former friends
and companions did not hesitate to express their conviction
| that he did not kill himself, and that this was only a false
report of his murderers."* He appears to have been of a
reserved and somewhat haughty disposition, and, on that
account, was not liked by the half-breeds, at whose hands,
in all human probability, he met his tragic end.
George Simpson was born in Ross-shire, in Scotland; but,
while still a youth, he removed to London where he was
engaged in commercial pursuits for nearly eleven years.
The ability, shrewdness and energy of young Simpson had
marked him out for a wide sphere of labour, and under a
far-distant sky. In 1819, when the Cdmpanies were still
battling furiously, Mr. Simpson was invited to cast in his
lot with the Hudson Bay Company. Early in 1820, therefore, he sailed from England for Montreal, by way of New
York, and in May he was on the road from the Canadian
city to the North-West. During the winter of that year he
was stationed at Lake Athabasca, where he endured many
* Hudson's Bay, pp. 112, 113. Mr. Ballantyne adds: " Besides, it is not probable that a
man who had just succeeded in making important additions to our geographical knowledge
and who might reasonably expect honour and remuneration upon returning to his native
land £ (and he was on his way thither) would, without any known or apparent cause, first
commit murder and then suicide. By his melancholy death the Hudson Bay Company lost
a faithful servant, and the world an intelligent and enterprising man. 1002
THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
hardships and privations, although he managed to carry on
the rivalry  in the fur-trade with  conspicuous tact and
energy.     The Ross-shire lad of twelve years before had
already made his mark, and assured for himself future fame
and fortune; and, when peace was at last concluded by the
amalgamation, Simpson's talent had indicated him as the
best man to preside over the vast operations of the united
company.    After serving a short time as Governor of the
Northern department, he received his appointment, and became  Governor-in-Chief   of   Rupert's  Land,  and  general
superintendent of the Hudson Bay Company's affairs in
North America.
Mr. Simpson's qualifications for the responsible post he so-
long occupied were two-fold.    He was a man of consummate
tact and address, and, at once, sat about healing up old
wounds, reconciling discordant interests, and removing old
prejudices and jealousies from amongst the people of the-
Territory.   Besides that he was the first Hudson Bay Governor who fulfilled, on behalf of the Company, that duty
imposed, as a condition, by the charter—the task of exploration and geographical discovery.    Governor Simpson, although as keenly alive to the material interests of his employers as the most unreasonable shareholder could expect,
never lost sight of the higher claims of science upon his-
time, as well as energies.    To his skilful direction and the
eagerness with which he assisted Franklin,  Richardson,.
Ross, Back and other explorers, the most valuable results
were due.   It was he who sent out Dease, Thomas Simpson,.
Rae, Anderson, and Stewart upon the path of research, and
at every fort or factory, controlled by the Governor, any ex- THE SCO T IN BRITISH NOR TH AMERICA.       1003s
plorer was sure of shelter, supplies, information and ad vice.
There is scarcely a book on Arctic travel which does not
express gratitude for assistance from Hudson Bay factors,,
and almost every one of the names mentioned is Scottish.*
During Sir George Simpson's long tenure of office, not
only were the interests of geographical discovery well looked
after, but the profits of the Company steadily increased year
after year. The amalgamation with the North-West concern had placed the entire country north of the boundary-
line in the hands of the Hudson Bay people, and the number of their posts, sensibly augmented in 1821, continued to-
increase. In 1840, according to Mr. Ballantyne,-j- there were-
about one hundred and ten forts or factories—thirty;four in
the northern, or old Hudson Bay Department, twenty-eight
in the southern, thirty-one in the so-called Montreal district
and seventeen west of the Rocky Mountains, including a
dep6t in the Sandwich Islands.^   All the published itinera-
* As bearing upon the general character of the Scots, as well as upon Mr. Simpson's active career, the following from Murray's British America (ii. p. 238), may find a place
here:—" Four-fifths at least of the Company's servants are Scotsmen, and chiefly from the-
northern districts. They are reckoned the hardiest, the most active and enterprising, audi
the least liable to bad habits. . . The journeys performed by these officers, and the adventures they have met with, would exhibit scenes and incidents as striking as most of
those fictitious ones which so much interest the public. Mr. Simpson, the present (1840)
resident Governor, has performed, during his stay in that country, upwards of 100,000miles-
of canoe navigation. The chief officers, including the Governor himself, often endure hardships which, to those accustomed to the comforts of civilized life, must appear almost incredible. They frequently spend months without seeing the inside of a house, going to sleep-
at night in the most sheltered spot they can find, wrapped in their cloaks, and a blanket
which has served during the day as a saddle-cloth. Unless fortunate in the chase, they have-
no means of obtaining food, and are sometimes obliged to kill their dogs and horses to re-
ieve hunger. Yet these hardy Scotsmen will find a livelihood in districts so desolate that
even the natives sometimes perish for want. . . Yet, amid all these hardships, such is
their zeal in the occupation that a complaint scarcely ever escapes their lips."
t Hudson Bay, p. 40.
t The Hudson Bay Company.made no attempt at colonization in British Columbia until
1843, when Victoria was founded on Vancouver Island.    In 1849, the Island was granted tri-
the Company " under the stipulation that they should colonize it."   Alexander Rattray _
M.D., F.R.S.E,:  Vancouver Island and British Columbia, London, 1862, p. 8. 1004        THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA
ries, whether of travellers or Hudson Bay employe's, supply
^abundant evidence of the presence of the ubiquitous Scot all
over this vast region. The early part of Sir George Simpson's Overland Journey is so full of references to Scottish
agents, that a brief sketch of it may be of service in this relation.* The Governor, it may be remarked, takes credit
for himself as the first traveller who ever accomplished an
overland journey round the world. His route lay from
London to Montreal, thence to Vancouver and Sitka, and
'thence by New Archangel, and the Aleutian Islands to
Ochotsk; across Russian Asia, through Yakutsk, Irkutsk
Tobolsk, Moscow, and St. Petersburgh, and so home by the
Baltic. On the journey from Irkutsk to St. Petersburgh,
forty-one days were spent, the nights being passed thus:
thirty-six in the carriage, one at Tomsk on a sofa, two at
Ekaterineburg on the floor, one at Kazan on a" sofa, and only
>one—at Moscow—in a bed."f*
The Governor, on his arrival at Lachine, made preparations for his trans-continental journey. Along with him
were to travel, as far as Red River, the Earls of Caledon and
Mulgrave, who were bound upon a buffalo-hunting expedition. Sir George took the old French route up the Ottawa
and the Matawa, by Lake Nipissing and French River to
the Sault Ste. Marie. Here the first western post of the
Hudson Bay Company, under the charge of Mr. J. D. Cameron, was reached. At Michipicoten, the Governor held a
temporary council for the Southern Department, Mr. Cam-
* An Overland Journey round the world, during the years 1841 and 1842> By Sir George
Simpson, Governor-in-Chief of the Hudson Bay Territories (Amer. Edit.
t 76    p. 22
HAL THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
1005
eron, Mr. George Keith and Mr. Cowie being the councillors *
There was no Dawson route in those days, and when the
party arrived at Fort William, preparations were made for
canoe-work and portage. Pointe de Meuren, the first halting-place, was a memorial of the old time of feuds, since
there had been a Hudson Bay fort established there to keep
• the North-Westers of Fort William in check. At Red River,
Sir George established himself with the inevitable Scottish
factor, a Mr. Finlayson, and sent his noble companions off to
hunt the buffalo under the direction of no less a person than
the half-breed, Cuthberr, Grant—the hero of the battle of
Frog Plains. A vivid picture is given in this interesting
volume, not merely of the difficulties in the way of the traveller in getting to Red River, but its isolation from the
civilized world, The accounts given by Sir George only
serve to heighten our admiration of the daring courage and
perseverance of Lord Selkirk and the tough fibre of the settlers, who suffered so much from »their landing on the bleak
shore at Churchill, until peace and plenty at length removed
the protracted period of toil, privation and disaster in every
shape."f" The testimony which a Hudson' Bay Governor
could give to the motives of the founder of that settle-
hient twenty years after the noble Earl had found repose
* A curious case of the Saulteaux Indians' belief in a Special Providence is recorded
here: At a moment of perplexity, when the provisions of a party were exhausted, and
nothing could be got without risking life upon*a sea, that was neither open water, nor
trustworthy ice—the probable alternatives being starving or drowning—an old man thus
spoke : " You know, my friends, that the Great Spirit gave one of our squaws a child yesterday. Now He cannot have sent it into the world to take it away again directly; and I
would, therefo>e, recommend our carrying the child with us, and keeping close to it as an
assurance of our safety." This counsel was adopted, but sad to say, the whole party to the
number of twenty-eight perished (p. 33).
t The relative position of Bed River Settlement is a far more interfiling feature in the
case, than its absolute place on the map. The nearest homes of civilization are the village
of Sault Ste. Marie, which itself has a reasonable share of elbow-room, St.  Peter's at the 1006
THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
in the grave ought to be quoted here, j To mould this secluded spot into the nucleus" of a vast civilization was the arduous and honourable task which Lord Selkirk imposed on
himself.    That nobleman was born a century and a half behind his time.    Had he lived in the days of the first three
Stuarts, when Britain, as the destined mother of western
nations, began to pour forth in her peaceful fleets a northern hive that loved not the sword less, but the ploughshare
more, he would most probably have rendered the name of
Douglas as illustrious for enterprising benevolence on some
fair coast of the new world as it had already become for
chivalrous valour in the annals of his own rugged land. His
was a pure spirit of colonization.    He courted not for himself the virgin secrets of some golden sierra; he needed no
outlet for a starving tenantry; he sought no asylum for a
persecuted faith: the object for which he longed was to make
the wilderness glad and to see the desert blossom as the
rose I (pp. 42, 43).
One of Sir George Simpson's attaches, named Mclntyre,
an active and intelligent Highlander, picked up on board the
ocean-steamer, who possessed moreover, | the peculiar recommendation of being able to communicate with me in one
of the unknown tongues, the Gaelic of the north of Scotland," came within a little of ending his own journeyings
and his life, by being pitched violently on his head from the
back of a horse, endowed with too exuberant spirits. The
guide was also a Scot, George Sinclair.   After a weary jouf-
Falis of the Mississippi, which is merely the single island in a vast ocean of wilderness, and
lastly York Factory on Hudson Bay, where our annual ship anchors after a voyage of nearly
two months, even from the Ultima Thule of Stromness (p. 42). He adds that this solitary
home is farther removed in point of time " from any kindred dwelling than Liverpool is
from Montreal, and nearly as far as London is from Bombiy." THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
1007
ney, the party at length reached Norway House on Lake
Winnipeg, having suffered severely from fatigue, want of
wholesome provisions, and a number \ of distressing casualties. Taylor, Sir George's faithful servant, with a companion
had gone in pursuit of a red deer on the way, and had wandered astray.     In a short time, their ammunition ran out,
and they were without resource out on the boundless prairie.
With feet torn by thorns and prickly grass they strayed on,
greedily devouring roots, bark, bird's eggs, or anything that
seemed likely to assuage their hunger.     After the lapse of
fourteen days, they were strongly tempted to He down and
die.    Fortunately at length, famished and  lacerated, they
reached, or rather crawled to the Company's establishment
on Swan River, where they were received kindly, and then
forwarded to Norway House by Mr. McDonell, the factor.
The Governor's journey next lay along the. Saskatchewan,
the nearest station being Carlton House.    Sir George here
gives some particulars of an expedition under Messrs. Mackenzie and Rowand, in 1822, to ascertain whether the reports of gold on the Bow or South  Saskatchewan River
were well-founded.    That expedition returned to report that
that the gold was all moonshine, and, of course, the Governor
was not much wiser in 1841.
Sir George's accounts of the Indian tribes and of the
scenery and productions of the country show that he was a
keen observer. After describing the appearance, nature and
habits of the buffalo, he relates that in 1829, he saw as many
.as ten thousand putrid carcases of buffaloes, " lying mired in
a, single ford of the Saskatchewan, and contaminating the
air for many miles around."     Travel in those days was not 1008
THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
without its rude alarms.    It was not altogether agreeable to
be awakened from sleep by the cry of " Indians are coming,"
and only consolatory to learn after the cocking of muskets
that the visitants were only a lot of Crees, "who, as their
tribe had no reputation that way, were allowed to remain
with us all night" (p. 65).    The extreme heat in July was
no surprise, but hailstones like those Sir George encountered in 1837, near Lac la Pierre, and measured in presence of
Messrs. Finlayson and Hargrave, of York Factory, were an
unmerciful visitation.     A hailstone five inches and a half
round is something more than a surprise.  " Throughout this
country," states the Governor, "everything is in extremes—
unparalleled cold and excessive heat, long droughts, balanced
by drenching rain,  and destructive hail" (p.  67).    That,,
however, is not the experience of settlers or even passing
tourists now-a-days, and although no one would doubt Sir
George's general impressions, it would certainly seem clear,
': either that the discomforts of locomotion in those days superinduced a resolution to record only the foul weather, because
it was noteworthy, or else the climate  has  been  modified
considerably during the past thirty years.
Of course there was no Battleford in those days, with its.
enterprising newspaper editor or printer I so the next sta- .
tion was Edmonton, the last fort this side of the Rockv
Mountains.    Here the party were entertained not only by
the factor, Mr. Rowand, but by the Rev. Mr. Rundle, who
was unostentatiously doing his Master's work in the wilds
of the far North-West as a Wesleyan missionary.   He appears also to have been an acute observer of nature, skilled
in more than one of the natural sciences, and full of valuable THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
100»
information. Sir George Simpson continued to ascend the
river until he reached the watershed at the height of some-
" seven or eight thousand feet above the level of the sea,
while the surrounding peaks appeared to rise nearly half
that altitude over-head." At Athabasca Portage the scenery
was wild and grand; the road, | only a succession of glaciers,,
runs through a region of perpetual snow, where nothing that
can be called a tree presents itself to enliven and cheer the
eye " (p. 78). It is here in a gelid pool or lake, that both the-
Columbia and the Mackenzie—one bound for the Pacific, the-
other for the Arctic Sea—take their rise* Here for the first
time in a twenty years' wandering in America., the Governor
thought that he had discovered the very heather of his native
Scotland • but on afterwards comparing the specimens he preserved with the genuine article, he found that they were not
identical. A purely indigenous sample of the western fauna,
however, gave him much trouble; it was a troublesome
and venomous species of winged insect, " which, in size and
appearance, might have been taken for a cross between the
bull-dog and the house-fly."
During his progress from Edmonton, Sir George Simpson
struck a south-westerly course to the Kootonais or Kootanie
River and Flat-bow-Lake, thus approaching close to the
boundary line. From Mr. Macdonald, at Fort Colville, fresh
guides were sent in advance to him. That post was reached
by the Macdonald River, and a chain of lakes connected with
the Kootanie.    Here the change of temperature was at once
* Here, says Sir George, " the relative positions of the opposite waters is such as to have
hardly a parallel on the earth's surface, for a small lake, appropriately enough known as
the Committee's Punch-bowl, sends its tribute from one end to the Columbia, and from the
other to the Mackenzie." 1010       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
remarked, the climate being many degrees milder than to
the east of the mountains.   Fort Colville, a rather pretentious work of defence for the locality, was found to be constructed of cedar, enclosed with pickets and bastions. About
.a mile away the Columbia, about three-quarters of a mile
wide, flowed between flat and monotonous banks of sand,
the scanty vegetation upon which had been withered by a
protracted drought. At this time the Indians of the interior
were in a state of dangerous excitement.    During the previous winter Mr. Black, who was in charge of Thompson's
River, had some trifling dispute with a chief at the  Kam-
loops post.    When the latter returned to his lodge or camp,
he took sick and died; and his tribe at once attributed his
•death to Mr. Black's magic.    The avenger of blood was at
once put on the unfortunate factor's track, and he was shot
in the back and killed while quietly crossing his apartment.
The savage escaped, but was at last hunted down and despatched, on the banks of the Fraser River, by his own people.    The existing disquiet was caused by the relations of
the chief, who now demanded vengeance for the two deaths
in the tribe, caused, as they contended, by the whites.    At
the Wallawalla, a tributary of the Columbia, Mr. McKinlay
had charge of the Company's post, and there Sir George encountered an American missionary, named Munger, whose
complaints concerning the country were loud and bitter. He
also had a professional grievance to annoy him: the Indians
were not tractable, and instead of embracing the Gospel
eagerly, as he had been led to expect, he found them a bigoted, superstitious, and jealous people (p. 99).    Some distance
below the party passed two conspicuous basaltic rocks, some- THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.       1011
thing like chimneys supported by a truncated pyramid;
these " needles," or whatever they might be called, had been
named after two adventurous Scots—Mackenzie's and Ross's
Heads.
The Governor was  now passing through a country in
which he had been threatened with trouble, when exploring
with Mr. McMillan and Dr. Todd in 1829.   On this occasion,
although there was some anxiety about the probable attitude of the tribe, no untoward event occurred.    Sir George
Simpson   was   on   what   was   afterward  declared   to be
American territory,  and crossing the Straits he made his
way to Vancouver, where he was hospitably received by
the afterwards well-known Mr. Douglas, then temporarily in
charge during the absence of his chief Mr. McLaughlin
The next stage was to Sitka in Russian America, whither he
sailed in the Beaver from Fort Nisqually,   the captain,
McNeill being, like most white men in these parts, a North
Briton.    So far north as Dease's Lake, sixty miles  from
Fort Stickeen and one hundred and fifty from the sea, there
was then a Hudson Bay fur trading-post with Mr. Campbell as the Company's factor, and further south, with a landlocked bay on the coast stood Fort Taco, superintended by
Dr. Kennedy.   With Sir George's further progress we are
not now concerned, and this sketch of his journey across
the continent is simply introduced to give some conception
of the rough country over which the Hudson Bay Company's operations extended, its vast extent, and the overwhelming preponderance of Scots among the white men engaged either in trade or exploration. II
1012        THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
Although Governor Simpson's name will recur in the following chapter, it may be well to round off his biography
here. He was not only an indefatigable explorer, but a
thorough man of business, and his services were naturally
and properly given, along with his sympathies, to the Company he so long served or controlled. In the disputes regarding the validity of its charter, and in all that concerned
its interests, he was the staunch advocate of the trading
monopoly in British North America. During his later years
he resided chiefly at Lachine, although so long as he was
able, he periodically visited the territory. In 1860, he
diverted the Prince of Wales, with a picturesque canoe
expedition which started from Isle Duval near Lachine, and
his last public act was the reception of His Royal Highness as a guest at his home on the St. Lawrence. During
that year he was seized with apoplexy and paralysis
but had so far recovered as to prepare for a visit to Red
River. This he was not fated to accomplish ; for, while
driving home from Montreal he was again stricken with
apoplexy and expired on the 7th of September, I860.*
In a subsequent chapter, when the great west is viewed
at a later stage in its history, reference will be made to
travels in recent years, having for the object either pleasure
or the survey of the country for railway or telegraphic purposes. Meanwhile, a glimpse has been given of the vigorous
activity of the Scottish race in that vast, untamed wilderness during the latter part of the eighteenth, and the first
half of the present century. To enumerate all the prominent Caledonians engaged over that broad expanse of British
Morgan : Celebrated Canadians, p. 490-1. THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA^    1013
territory would be out of the question within the limits of
this chapter. It is impossible to take up any of the books
cited here, or others, such as a work by Mr. John McLean
entitled " Twenty-five Years in the Hudson Bay Territory,"
quoted by some of our authorities, without being satisfied
that the great West of British North America was taken
possession of by the Scot at an early date, explored by his
indomitable perseverance, and first drawn towards and
within the pale of civilization by his wondrous energy and
intelligence.
tsaa^jsgr-'^'wwSjT
U *®g^
CHAPTER IV.
THE  COMPANY AND  COLONIZATION.
SlN this chapter it is intended to bring the history of
qH    British settlement in the North-West down to the
present time, including the disputes regarding the Charter
of the Hudson Bay Company, the purchase of its vested
rights, the formation of the Province of Manitoba, the* Red
River rebellion, and  other matters of more recent date.
After the union of the Companies, as already stated, the
settlers met with a new enemy, against which forts and
ammunition were futile, the grasshopper.    But there was
still another fruitful source of trouble and loss which at
intervals marred and retarded the progress of the colony.
In 1826, and much more recently, in 1852 and 1861, the
sudden thawing of the snows upon the banks of the great
rivers which form the arteries of the North-West, caused
wide-spread desolation by floods, on some occasions coveri.no-
hundreds of square miles.    The year 1826 was one of the
most disastrous in the history of the Settlement.     It was
ushered in with a terrible season of want and sufferino'
amongst the hunters, the story of whose appalling destitution on the plains seemed to indicate a sum of misery
beyond the power either of the Company or the colony to
do more than slightly alleviate with their slender resources.
The prospect was not less desperate than the cry of India THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.       1015
for help a short time ago. Mr. Donald Mackenzie was
Governor of the colony at that time, as well as the Company's representative at Fort Garry, and what could be
accomplished was cheerfully set about, but the success of
any relieving movement was not so much problematical as
hopeless. The starving people were scattered over great
distances ; the snow was unusually deep, and there was no
mode of conveyance but by dog-sleighs, and this was tedious
and difficult. Sympathy and assistance were freely extended
to the poor creatures, and all that thought or pity could
suggest was promptly put in execution. The scenes on the
road from Pembina to the colony were harrowing in the
extreme, and the feeling of utter despondency which prevailed was only dispelled by a great calamity at the colony
itself.
The severe frost, and the fearful snow-storms which had
wrecked the hopes of the hunters, killed their horses, and
starved or chilled to death many of themselves, their wives
and children, soon wrought mischief in another shape when
the iron rule of winter was broken by the summer sum
There had been drifting snows of unusual depth; the thermometer had fallen to 45° below zero; the ice measured five
feet seven inches in thickness, and, when on the 2nd of May
the great thaw came, there was an alarming inundation
On that day, just before the ice started, Red River rose nine
feet in the twenty-four hours—an unprecedented occurrence
even in the traditions of the Indians. Soon the whole country appeared like a vast lake. Human lives were destroyed,
cattle, horses and every living thing that encountered the
flood was swept out of existence • the houses were demol- 1016       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
ished, the movable property, with the debris of buildings,
carriages, furniture, and all 1 were seen floating along over
the widely extended plain, to be engulfed in Lake Winnipeg." The height to which the water had risen above its
ordinary level was fifteen feet. When it subsided, the tale
may best be told in the language of the prices current.
I Wheat, which had fallen to 2s. per bushel at the commencement of the disaster, now rose to 15s. j beef from |d.
per pound to 3d." It was not until June 13th that the
colonists were again able to draw near to the site of their
old habitations.*
During these early years of peace, several events occurred
of considerable importance to the struggling colony.    The
distresses of the settlers had placed them more or less at the
mercy of the Hudson Bay officers, and the result was an
immense amount of extortion, either in the shape of overcharges or of usurious interest.   Mr. Halkett, one of Lord
Selkirk's executors, put a stop to this nefarious system.
Armed with a decision pronounced by Lord Ellenborough,
he compelled the local Governor to strike off five per cent,
from all accounts, and to withdraw the claim of five per
cent, for interest altogether 1 as a fraudulent and illegal
transaction."*!*   In future, English goods imported at York
Factory were to bear 33^ per cent, on their prime cost, and
25 per cent, on their arrival at  the colony, and nothing
additional.    Mr. Halkett also discovered that, in order to
enhance the price of provisions, the Company's servants had
* Hargrave: Red River, p. 81.   Also in Boss: Red River Settlement, pp. 101-106, where
a graphic account of the inundation is given by an eye-witness.
t See Ross, p. 68, where the Lord Chief Justice's judgment on this point is given. THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
1011*
secreted large quantities in their depositories. Two experiments were tried at this period which resulted in financial
collapse. The first was the formation of the " Buffalo Wool
■Company," a joint-stock concern by which everybody at
Red River was to be suddenly enriched. The idea was that,
as owing to the prevalence of wolves at the time, sheep-
raising was precarious, a substitute must be found for wool,
and the speculators proposed the shaggy hair of the buffalo.
•Counting the raw material as nothing, they soon reared
many financial castles in the air. Expensive machinery was
imported, and an extravagant establishment set up. Hides
-rose in price, and agriculture was set aside in favour of
buffalo-hunting. Had the visionary scheme succeeded, a
step backward into barbarism would have been taken; but
the result proved to be an ignominious collapse.
The other scheme was of a different stamp, but was also
foredoomed to failure. Lord Selkirk, who well knew the rude
sort of husbandry his Highlanders had been accustomed to,
had projected an experimental farm and dairy. The " Hay
Field Farm " was placed in charge of a Scotsman of great
agricultural experience named Laidlaw, specially brought
out for the purpose ; " but," says Mr. Ross (p. 77), 1 in this,
.as in every other attempt to benefit the colony in those
•early days, mismanagement, disappointment and ruin, were
the only result. Expensive buildings were erected, good
labourers and servants employed; "and yet all the time
there was not an ox to plough or a cow to milk." Finally,
the manor-house or mansion, which had cost £600 was accidentally burned, just at its completion, in a drunken orgy.
I After several years' labour, waste and extravagance, every iP?fiiiMiiiii#
1018       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
vestige of property on the farm had disappeared"—the
experiment having sunk £2,000 of Lord Selkirk's money.
In view of all that had thus befallen the settlers,, it may
surely be said that the most patient and unyielding perseverance was never so sorely tried before; and it speaks
volumes for the singular energy and persistence of the Scot,
that, after so many years of loss, suffering, hardship and
disappointment in every conceivable form, they continued
to hold on with dogged pertinacity until they at last
achieved a complete victory for themselves and for civilization.
The union of the Pembina settlers with the colonists of
Red River, was another event worthy of note, inasmuch as
it placed in juxtaposition the Scottish, the French-Canadians, and the half-breeds, in much the same relation to each
other as they still remain. When all the immigrants were
united they numbered about 1,500 ; and the French, finding
their old occupation gone, and being also in dread of the
Sioux raid, betook themselves to the colony. These alien
elements did not mingle well together; the French half-
breeds I squatted" on the land, but they never attempted
cultivation—the Indian penchant for hunting, fishing and a
roving life generally, being too strong to be eliminated. The
Scottish settlers, who retained the. strong religious feelings
they had brought from home, felt disquieted about the future of their children, liable, as they were, to contamination
from the semi-savage influences about them. A separation
was resolved upon, the Scots remaining on their lands at the
centre of the colony; the French were settled in one parish,
St. Boniface, now the seat of the Roman Catholic Arch- THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.       1019
bishopric; whilst the half-breeds, under Cuthbert Grant,,
were removed to " White Horse Plains," twenty miles up the
Assiniboine ; the Forks being the common centre. Mr.
Ross (p. 81) is probably right in his opinion that this separation was, on the whole, a mistake. The Canadians and
half-breeds gradually grew together, and although they and
the Scots have generally lived on passable terms, there has-
never been a cordial understanding, and party spirit has-
continued to grow more intense from that day to this.
Meanwhile agricultural progress, though slow, was continuous. Successive importations of cattle had raised the
quality and amount of the stock, and Governor Simpson
gave a powerful impetus to the settlement by promising to
take all the Company's supplies from the colony. This
stimulated the people to extraordinary exertions, with the
unfortunate result that, after the Company's wants* were
supplied, there was no market for the surplus. Prices rapidly fell, and Red River suffered from all the consequences
of an evil heard of in later times and more settled communities—that of over-production. But the want of markets
was not the only difficulty in the path of the farmers. There
were not the necessary appliances for ordinary agricultural
operations. At that time there was not to be found in the
whole colony, it is said, either a smut-mill, or fanning machine, to clean the grain, and but few barns to thrash it inr
and still fewer kilns to dry it; much, therefore, of the grain
had, of necessity, to be thrashed on an ice-floor, in the open
air, during all weathers, and then ground, in a frozen state,
and immediately packed off in casks of green wood, furnished by the Company itself.   It was the same with butter and 1020       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
all other products of the dairy and farm. It was no wonder
that the difficulties of their situation, with lack of experience
and judgment, should have caused many failures. The
Orkney men, a frugal and industrious people, from whom
sprang such hardy explorers as Dr. John Rae, who first ascertained positively the fate of Sir John Franklin—were
wanting still more than their mainland brethren in agricultural skill and resource ; they were poor and could not procure the necessary conveniences, and yet they toiled on and
prospered in the land.
A bare reference to Governor Simpson's attempt to establish a second experimental farm, under Chief Factor McMillan, will suffice. It was a failure, and cost the Company
.£3,500 sterling; worst of all the Governor, whose hobby
it had been, lost his self-control, and exclaimed in the bitterness of his heart:—1 Red River is like a Lybian tiger, the
the more I try to tame it, the more savage it becomes; for
every step I try to bring it forward, disappointments
drag it two backward." Then followed the " Assiniboine
Wool Company," in which the sheep was to take the place
of the buffalo; but the views of its projectors were too
extravagant, and the new project followed its predecessor
into the limbo of abortive speculations. This was also a
device of Governor Simpson's, and that it failed, was not
his fault. He desired to divert the people from over-production in grain, and if hi3 agents had only carried out the
scheme reasonably, it might have succeeded ; but, as a resident there remarks, | The people of the Red River grasp at
anything new, as hawk pounces upon a bird, and then
abandon it without waiting with patience for the antici- THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.       1021
pated result." The catastrophe, in this case, resulted from
over-eagerness at the outset, and want of constancy in the
sequel.
In 1835 and 1836, a change took place in the management of the Red River Settlement. After Lord Selkirk's
death his executors attempted to direct its affairs; but finding the task impracticable they transferred the government
to the Company. The time arrived when this anomalous
state of things was to be succeeded by the Company's rule
as proprietors of the colony. In 1834, it may be as well to
note, the first outbreak of the half-breeds, thoughtless,
thriftless, and dependent as usual, startled both the Company
and the colony ; but no great harm befell the latter except
the necessity of submitting to extortionate charges and demands. The Hudson Bay officers had thus two totally
different sorts of people to deal with. The half-breeds required support, control and advice at every turn, whilst the
colonists, true to their national genius, were proud, self-
reliant, impatient of restraint, and passionately fond of
freedom and independence. The former were always in a
state of tutelage, expected everything from the Company
and complained vigorously if they were denied what they
sought. The Scots, on the other hand, could not work the
paternal system, and rebelled against the leading-strings of
the Company. Notwithstanding the honest desire of Governor Simpson, and many of his subordinates, to assist the
colony, Hudson Bay rule was always galling to the true-
born Briton, and in addition to that irregular, arbitrary,
and capricious. 1022       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
As the representatives of Lord Selkirk took little or no
active interest in the progress of the settlement, the Hudson Bay Company offered to purchase their proprietary
rights in the colony. Altogether, the Earl had expended no
less than £85,000 upon his scheme—three times as muchj
says Mr. Ross, as the whole colony would have brought if
put up at auction at any time in the first twenty years of
its existence. In 1836, an agreement was come to under
which the Company paid the heirs of his lordship £84,000
in full satisfaction of their claims, proprietary or otherwise,
saving only the rights of those who had purchased lands between the years 1811 and 1836. Strange to say this transfer was effected without consultation with the people of the
colony, who were made over as unceremonously as French
Alsace or Turkish Bosnia to a power they were not by any
means attached to.* This step, and more especially the secret manner of it, only tended to widen the breach already
open between the Company and the colonists. Under the
new regime, a Council was constituted, and- a brief code of
laws, fiscal, judicial and administrative was drawn out.
These changes might, of themselves, have aroused the suspicions of the colonists, had not the country been under
the Company as representing Lord Selkirk's representatives for some years past. That the Company desired to
conceal the transfer of the Selkirk rights is clear from the
*" During all these political changes, the colonists were kept in the dark never having
been put in possession of their intellectual rights, by knowing what was going on, or to
whom the colony belonged. Nor was it till many years after the settlement became virtually
the Company's own property, that the fact was made known to the people, and then by
mere chance. Till this eventuality the people were under the persuasion that the colony
still belonged to the executors of Lord Selkirk, and were often given to understand so. By
this political finesse, or shall we rather call it, political absurdity, the Company preserved
themselves clear of all responsibility, whatever transpired."   Ross: Red River, pp. 173-4. THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.       1023
fact that when the Church of England chaplain—the only
Protestant minister at hand—refused any concession to
Presbyterian feelings touching the Liturgy, the answer to
their remonstrances was an evasive reference to Lord Selkirk's executors, who had no longer any more to do with
the matter than the President of the United States.
The history of the colony during succeeding years, was
one of considerable fluctuation ; still no temporary check to
its prosperity stayed the march of progress. The few incidents, it may be well to mention, may be compressed into a
paragraph. The first petit jury under the new code was
empannelled on the 28th of April, 1836, to try a prisoner
for theft. The unfortunate, who attained a bad eminence
on this occasion, was Louis St. Denis, and one part of his
sentence consisted of a public flogging. A German wielded
the I cat" on this occasion, and he was permitted to perform
his novel task without molestation. But he had no sooner
stepped out of the ring than the mob began to raise cries of
*' stone him," and he was marked out for public execration
under the name of " Bourreau," the hangman. So unaccustomed were the people to the execution of a legal sentence,
and so venial an offence were theft and violence in their
eyes, that the punishment of St. Denis seemed to the French
a gross violation of the liberty of the subject. At an early
period (1839), a Scot named Thorn—Judge Thorn, as he was
popularly called—became Recorder of Rupert's Land. He
was a lawyer of ability; but there were two objections to
him. He had been no favourite with the French party of
Lower Canada during Papineau's rebellion, and therefore
the French portion of the population at Red River were pre- 1024       THE SCOT IN BRITISH N ORTH AMERICA.
judiced against him from the start. Besides that, he was
interested in the prosperity of the Company, was its officer
during pleasure and therefore, in any case between the Company and the colony, he was looked upon as an interested
party. Although Mr. Ross, from whose work these facts
are taken, was no admirer * of the Company's procedure in
many respects, he was clearly of opinion that the monopoly
of trade was decidedly a benefit to the population, and more
especially to the Indians. He regards the cry of the French
and half-breeds | Le commerce est libre"—" Trade is free"—
as merely a pretence used by lawless and ungovernable men
to cover rapine and violence. Into these disputes, as well as
the controversies concerning Judge Thorn's decisions and
Major Caldwell's method of administration, it would be beside the present purpose to enter. It may not be amiss,
however, to notice here once more the striking contrast, apparent to eveiy visitor, between the frugal, provident and
intelligent Scots and the other colonists or quasi colonists
around them. One illustration in the shape of a scrap of
conversation between Mr. Ross and a friend with whom he
was riding about on a tour of inspection may suffice. At
"a place called the middle-church, my friend made a halt,
and turning to me observed, ' This part of the colony we
have just passed, is the thickest settled I have yet seen ;
and, if we may judge from outward appearances—horses,
barn-yards, parks and inclosures—the hand of industry has
been indeed busy.' 'Yes,' said I, 'these are the Scotch settlers, the emigrants sent hither by Lord Selkirk I the people
who have suffered so much, and to whose fortitude and
perseverance the colony owes that it is what you see it this THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.       1025-
day.'    ' This spot,' he rejoined,   'is really full of interest.' |
(p. 2oi).        I mm
The predominance of the Scot during the early years of
the settlement did not, of course continue, as new elements
were introduced by immigration from other branches of the
English-speaking people.* They broke up the soil and planted
it; others reap the fruit of their honest toil and patient endurance. The glory of having first raised the standard of
religion and civilization, in these western solitudes, is theirs.
The Scots were the advance guard of that peaceful British
army of colonization, which has followed them to see the
fertile land, and to possess it. The assumption of the North-
West by the Crown and its incorporation into the Dominion, have made new work for Scotsmen, not quite so heavy
and disheartening, but still hard enough to try the sterling
Caledonian mettle. Up the valleys of the Assiniboine, along
the branches of the Saskatchewan, on the Peace and the
Qu'Appelle, the avant couriers of North Britain, are making
their way, making the crooked straight and the rough places
smooth for the settlers of years and centuries yet to come.
If the Scot has lost ground at Red River, there is still a
greater Scotland ready to his hand in the boundless prairies
far beyond.
This is not the place to enter into the events which led to
the purchase of the Hudson Bay Company's  proprietary
* The writer, already quoted so often, remarks this) fact with a touch of patriotic regret:
The first ten years of their sojourn in the colony, the Scots were almost the only settlers ;
the next ten years they were the maioritKg (of course the French and half-breeds are
taken into account here) ; but the last ten, they have been the minority; and, by a combination of untoward circumstances, they can hardly now be said to retain their nationality,
being a mere fraction in the mass of the community. It is as if they had come to R-ed
River merely to endure its hardships, and as trusty pioneers to bear the burden and heat
of the day, where a people of less hardihood and perseverance must necessarily have succumbed."—Red River Settlement, p.143. 1026       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
rights.    The causes of discontent amongst the settlers were
manifold. They were hampered by the paternal restraints of
the monopoly, which without being absolutely unfriendly,
was deeply impressed with the truth of the  North-Wester's
maxim that" colonization is at all times unfavourable to the
fur trade."    The Hudson Bay people did not, like the Montreal traders plot " the downfall of the colony, by fair means
or foul," but, however kindly disposed such Governors as
Sir George Simpson might be, their interests were distinctly
opposed to any expansion of the area of settlement..    In
addition to the natural discontent of the Colonists at being
governed by a trading Company, through an irresponsible
OounciL the regions to the west were becoming better known
in Canada, in the United States and in Europe.    Moreover,
the period, during which the Hudson Bay Company were
licensed to  hold  the territory was to terminate in 1859,
and a vigorous  agitation was  commenced  to  oppose its
renewal.    This license had been granted by Act of Parliament in 1821 ; it expired and was renewed in 1838 for
twenty-one years ; and strong efforts were early put forward
to prevent any extension of the term.    The people of the
colony,  and above all the Canadian Parliament  set  about
collecting information, [procuring legal opinions, and urging
the assumption of the whole territory by the Crown, and its
annexation   to   Canada.      A   voluminous   literature   was
accumulated upon the subject, but so far as its object was
to impeach the validity of the old charter, the result was a
failure.    It  is true that the Act confirming the  grant by
Charles II. had long since expired by effluxion of time; but
as the law-officers of the Crown showed conclusively, it had THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.       3027
been cited in a number of statutes passed at different times
and thus confirmed by the Imperial Parliament over and
over again. Canada despatched Chief Justice Draper to
England to present her case against the Company, and, in
1857-58, an exploring expedition was sent out under Messrs.
Dawson and Hind, to make a careful survey of the territory.
Meanwhile a Committee of the Eouse of Commons had investigated the subject minutely in all its bearings. Its report was, on the whole, favourable to the Company, but
although it did not recommend a renewal of the exclusive
license to trade, no conclusion was come to as to the future
government of the North-West, and matters remained as
they were.* In 1868, however, the subject was finally set at
rest. In that year, the Hon. (afterwards Sir) George E. Car-
tier and the Hon. William Macdougall, were despatched to
England by the Canadian Cabinet in order to negotiate with
the Home Government for the transfer of the territory to
the Dominion. The validity of the charter had perforce to
be admitted, and all that remained was to come to terms
with the Hudson Bay Company. By the terms of the
agreement thus concluded the sum of £300,000 sterling was
to be paid to the Company, as well as grants of land around
its trading-posts, amounting in all to fifty thousand acres.
In addition to this, it is to have, so soon as the territory is
surveyed and laid out in townships,  one-twentieth of all
*The whole spirit of the report returned tj the Houje of Commons was such a? to justify
the Company and its friends in believing that no serious fault had been found with its management. The inquiry, however, produced no immediate effect. The Committee recommended thatabill8h)uld be introduced by the Government embodying their views with
reference to a change in the management of the country, and expressed a hope that
such grave interests being ats-take, all parties would approach the subject in a spirit of conciliation and justice, but the recommen lation has never been acted on,"—Hargrave's Red
■JRiver, p. 141. 1028        THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
the land in the great fertile belt south of the north branch
of the Saskatchewan. The privilege of trade is, of course
retained, but the monopoly exists no longer*
These terms were absurdly liberal to the Company; it
was certainly not entitled to anything approaching so extra-
gant a land-grant as was thus conceded to it. Already the
grant at Red River is an obstruction quite as injurious to
the progress of the district as if the lands were locked up in
J. O
mortmain. The impropriety of the grant will appear more
evidently year by year, as the Saskatchewan valley is" filled
up, but expostulation with the Imperial Government, or the
Company, was vain. Canada was determined to have the
region as part of the new Dominion at all hazards, and was
compelled to pay for it at an exorbitant rate. In April,
1869, the Dominion Parliament fulfilled that part of the
compact which related to the indemnity, and constituted a
provisional government for the entire country, under the
name of the North-West Territory. On the first of the
following December, a formal surrender of the region was
to take place, and affairs were put in train for taking possession. Suddenly an unforeseen trouble supervened, which,
for the time, caused great excitement and alarm, and also
temporarily kept the Dominion out of its newly acquired
possessions.* The history of these events will be found fully "
detailed in works specially devoted to Canadian history in
general or of this region in particular. Still a brief account
of the so-called Rebellion seems necessary in order to complete the sketch attempted here of the colony.*f*
* See A Popular History of Canada :  By the Rev. W. H. Withrow, M.A., p. 537.
t See Begg's History of the Red River Rebellion, and also Withrow's History, chap, xlvii.
where an admirable concise account of the episode is given. THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.        1029
In the month of September, the Hon. William Macdouo-all
who had been appointed first Governor, approached the
territory by way of the United States in order to enter upon
the duties of his office.
The events which followed have been variously interpreted by those who have undertaken to relate them, and
perhaps it is even now impossible to apportion the blame
justly to the different parties concerned. Much of the
excitement at Fort Garry was unquestionably due to a misunderstanding largely the fruit of ignorant fears on the part
of the Mentis or French half-breeds. Some time before the
arrival of Mr. Macdoueall the storm had been brewino-, and
it, at first, took the form of sullen apprehensions and visible
uneasiness. A party of surveyors, under Col. Dennis, had
been sent from Canada to run lines for roads, and lay out
townships. Mr. Begg states that the half-breeds at onoe
took the alarm, and, although they made no overt attack
upon the surveyors, had very grave suspicions of Canada's
purpose. Their alarm was caused by a suggestion that it
was the intention of the new Governor and Council to
dispossess them of their lands, and a causeless panic ensued,
such as has been witnessed in more civilized countries in
connection with railway enterprise. The Company's friends
deny that its officers had anything to do with the feverish
state of public feeling. It is their contention that all the
trouble which ensued was the fruit of mischievous agitation
got up by the Nor-Wester, a rather lively little paper published in the settlement, and by a few turbulent spirits
recently imported into the colony. These men, it is alleged,
went about exciting discontent with the Company, and, by 1030 THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
their overbearing conduct, causing profound distrust amongst
the half-breeds. Hitherto the settlement had been at peace,
happy in its ignorance of politics and party spirit, and contented under the benign rule of its Hudson Bay guardians.
Moreover, the surveyors and others are charged with " squatting upon " or rather claiming without any attempt at occupation, all the vacant lands they can get at*
On the 20th of October, Mr. Macdougall was met near the
boundary line by an armed force, and compelled to withdraw again to Pembina in the State of Minnesota. The
discontent of the half-breeds had culminated in open revolt;
a provisional government was appointed under the guidance
of Louis Riel, who acted as Secretary with John Bruce as
President. The Hudson Bay Governor, at this time, was
Mr. William Mactavish, a well-known name in the annals
of the North-West. Donald Mactavish, a native of Strath-
erick, Scotland, was as already noted, one of the partners of
the North-West Company. For about a quarter of a century he was employed in trade and exploration, visiting and
conciliating the Indians, with whom he was in great favour,
and in promoting generally the interests of his co-partnery.
He had projected an expedition with the object of striking
a route across the continent for trade with China, and after
much hardship and danger, had reached the mouth of the
Columbia River when he and six companions were lost near
Cape Disappointment in the North Pacific, on the 22nd of
May, 1815.*|-    Governor William Mactavish had been resi-
* Bejrg: The Creation of Manitoba, or A History of the Red River Troubles, chap. i.
It may be remarked that this work exhibits a strong bias in favour of the Company, and
lays the entire responsibility upon the malcontents at the Settlement, Mr. Macdougal'l and
the Canadian Government. The statements in it, therefore, must be taken with considerable reserve.
t Morgan: Celebrated Canadians, 4c, p. 168. THE SCOT IN JBRITISH NORTH AMERICA.       10." 1
dent ruler of Assiniboia for some years when the Riel usrr-
pation at once relieved him of further trouble for a season.
Fort Garry was seized, with all the stores, rifles, cannon and
ammunition; and, that having been done, the party met
Mr. Macdougall, as already stated, near the border, and
forced him to withdraw.
The Hon. William Macdougall, though a Canadian, bear
a name which clearly proclaims his Scottish origin. According to Morgan's Parliamentary Companion his grandfather,
John Macdougall, was a Scot by birth, and a U E. Loyalist
attached to the British Commissariat service during1 the
American Revolution. After the termination of hostilities,
he settled in Nova Scotia, but subsequently removed to
Upper Canada. William Macdougall was born in Toronto,
and has taken an active part in public affairs for many years
past. He was early connected with the press, both agricultural and political, having conducted the Canada Farmer
and the Canadian Agriculturist in the interest of the tillers of the soil, and a Reform journal, the North American,
for a period of seven years, until its absorption by the Globe
with which he was connected also for some years. In 1847
he had already been admitted as an attorney; but only
applied for and obtained a call to the Bar in 1862. He has
been a prominent member of several Canadian administrations, a member of the Ontario Legislature for South Simcoe,
and, once more, of the Dominion Parliament, as M.P. for
Halton. The check which the new Governor and his party
met on the frontier, although it had been threatened, was
hardly expected; but it completely overturned Mr. Macdou-
gall's plans for the development of the country.    It is much 1032       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
to be regretted that this should have been the case. The
hon. gentleman possessed the requisite abilities for the onerous task he had undertaken; he was active, intelligent, and
well-fitted by his tact and acquaintance with public affairs;
and it must have been deeply mortifying to him to have
fallen a victim to the ignorant passions of an unruly mob,
before the opportunity had been given him to delare his
intentions and to unfold his policy at Fort Garry.
Col. Dennis was a Canadian officer of volunteers, and so
soon as Mr. Macdougall had met the armed force of rebels and
retreated, the gallant Colonel was commissioned to organize
a loyal force to suppress the revolt. Forty-five of the men,
however, were taken prisoners by the malcontents at Fort
Garry and committed to prison; and thenceforward Riel
and his associates were masters of the position. At a convention on Feb. 7th a new government was formed with the
noted French half-breed as President: a bill of rights was
3 O
drawn up, in which local self-government was demanded,
together with a general amnesty. An attempt to quell the
disturbances was made by Major Boulton, with some hundreds of men. Fort Garry was to be attacked; but as Rie
released the prisoners, the movement was abandoned ; but
the Major, who was arrested with his followers on their
way home, was, after a mock trial, sentenced to death.
He was with difficulty saved from his fate; but afterwards,
a less fortunate prisoner, named Thomas Scott, was brutally
murdered, in  spite of the exertions  of the  Rev. George
©
Young, the Wesleyan minister, and Mr. Donald A Smith, of
the Hudson Bay Company. The wide-spread horror which
prevailed throughout Ontario precipitated matters.  In May THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
1033
an Act was passed by the Dominion Parliament creating
the Province of Manitoba out of the Red River Settlement,
and it was admitted as a member of the Confederation on
the 16th of July, 1870. The remaining, and, of course, far
the larger portion of the territory, was to be governed by
the Lieutenant-Governor of Manitoba, assisted by a Council
of eleven members.
Riel's early success had evidently turned his head, and his
conduct throughout was arbitrary, unjust and vindictive.
Even after Mr. Macdougal's departure from Pembina eastward (18th December), the half-breed President was never at
ease. He managed to raise supplies by forced levies upon
the Company and the settlers; arrested Governor Mactavish,
and abused him in violent language, whilst confined to bed
by illness; put Mr. Halkett in irons; imprisoned Dr. Cowan ; and threatened Mr. Bannatyne who endeavoured to act
as peacemaker; strove to deprive Mr. Donald A. Smith of
his credentials as Commissioner; and was guilty of. other
acts suggested by a violent and impulsive nature. One of
his officers, in fact, his judiciary, was James Ross, a Scottish
half-breed, the son of Alexander Ross from whose works
extracts have been made in former pages. He was a young
man of considerable ability, and his early promise attracted
the special attention of the Bishop of Rupert's Land when
studying at St. John's College, Red River. In 1853 he
entered the University of Toronto, and graduated with
honours in 1857. In 1860, on the retirement of Mr, Buckingham (late Deputy-Minister of the Interior) from the
proprietary of the Nor-Wester,Mr. Ross entered into partnership with Mr. William Coldwell, the remaining member 1034       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
of the firm. In 1864 Dr. Schultz, M. P., purchased Mr.
Ross's share, and the latter left for Canada, where he was
engaged at Toronto for a considerable time upon the staff
of the Globe. Mr. Ross had always taken strong ground
against the Company, and he was not more favourable to
the scheme of government proposed to be set up by Canada.
His sympathies were, therefore, to a constitutional extent
with Riel and his followers; but he had no share in the
violent and arbitrary acts of the so-called President. The
provisional government appointed him Chief Justice, and he
is said to have drawn up the petition of right. When at
the University, he appeared to his fellow-students to combine the steady, plodding and cautious character of the Scot,
with the fertility of resource and the quiet reserve of the
Indian, and the pride of both races. He was cut off in his
prime, and perhaps it may not seem unkind, especially for a
fellow-graduate of their common Alma Mater, to say that a
• life which might have been of essential service in his native
settlement was marred by being involved in its turbulent,
yet altogether insignificant party strifes.
In the month of June Col. Garnet Wolseley, who afterwards succeeded in a tougher task under the Equator, started with a force of twelve hundred men to oust Louis Riel
from the government of the country. With the exception of a
company or two of the 60th Rifles, this body was composed
of Canadian volunteers. On the 24th of August, after considerable difficulties had been surmounted, the expedition
arrived at Fort Garry, only to find that Riel had abdicated
and left his staff of office to anyone who might choose to
assume it.   Early in September, the "Hon. Adams George THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.        1035-
Archibald arrived, and assumed the duties of the Lieutenant
Governorship* Mr. Archibald, however, speedily resignedr
preferring the Lieutenant-Governorship of Nova Scotia, his-
native Province, to the vice-royalty at Red River. He was
succeeded by the Hon. Alexander Morris, the son of a Scot,,
who fills a considerable figure in the history of Ontario,
and especially of the eastern portion of it. He was born
at Perth, a little more than half a century since, and was
educated partly at the Scottish University of Glasgow, and
partly at our Canadian University of Montreal, which was
founded by a Scot, the Hon. Peter McGill. He has served
as President of the St. Andrew's Society at Montreal, andi
as Trustee of the Presbyterian University of Queen's College. Mr. Morris attracted notice, as a young man by his-
pen, and amongst the subjects which attracted his attention,,
nearly twenty years before, was the future of the Great
North-West, over which he was now called upon to rule,
Mr. Morris did not leave Canada and arrive a perfect stranger at Winnipeg as Lieutenant-Governor, since he bad
already been Chief Justice of the Court of Queen's Bench
of Manitoba,—its first Chief Justice in fact,—for some
months previously.
No survey of Scottish work in the North-West, however
cursory, can be complete, which fails to give special prominence to the interests of religion, and its foster-sister, education. In the introduction an attempt was made to limn,
in outline those broad and salient features of the national
character as it has been moulded by nature and by man.
That sketch will have been drawn in vain, if it has not
* See Withrow's "Popular History,' pp. 541, 542. jggpjsasaz
1036     r^^ scor iy British north America.
proved conclusively that the Scot is by virtue of his descent,
and must always of necessity be, a religious man in bent and
bias, if not in practice. An old legal maxim, the cause of
much international strife, affirms that no man can put off
his country, as if it were a discarded suit of clothes. In
the jurists' sense this dictum has been happily abandoned >
but it remains irrefragably true, as applied to individual
characteristics, be they physical or intellectual, moral or
spiritual. If, as we know, both from science and Scripture,
the transgressions of an ancestor are visited upon posterity,
with the unfailing sequence of cause and effect, so also are
his endowments, whatever they may be, and his qualities
and tendencies for good or evil, transmitted to the latest
generation. The newest born infant is no isolated atom of
humanity, but the last link formed in a living chain whose
other extremity is lost in the impenetrable mists and darkness of the past. What he is, historical and congenital
tendencies have made man; it is in what he shall become
that his responsibility lies.
It is not necessary to recapitulate the combination of circumstances which formed the religious nature of the Scot.
That they have succeeded in moulding a very strong and
earnest type of spirituality, is beyond question; its foes
have termed it rugged and stern, mainly because they failed
to comprehend it, but that it is a main feature of the national
character, no one affects to deny. The head or the heart
may have too often rebelled in many a Scotsman, and there
are always traces of the inherited bias. Mr. W. R. Greg,
who evidently regards intellect as the antagonist of faith,
says that " Mr. J. S. Mill would have been a great Christian THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.       1037
if he had not been a great thinker," an involuntary compliment to the strength of Scotland's spiritual grasp upon the
natures of all her sons. Even the unbelief of such men as
David Hume, or George Combe is not like that of Boling-
broke, Voltaire, or Strauss. And in the moral world, though
many a Scot has fallen away from the straight path, there is
the crucial instance of Burns to prove that underlying wo-
ful errors there may slumber ever and anon to awaken reprovingly—a strong religious nature.
The Scottish character was strongly marked in those Su-
therlandshire Highlanders who wintered at Fort Churchill
in the cruel winter of 1811. In the new and untamed
wilderness to which they had removed, everything around
them tended to deepen their feelings of dependence on the
Father of all, and their religious trust in Him. Nature and
man were against them there as they had been to them and
to their fathers during many centuries in their native land;
and they craved for those religious ordinances which had
been the strength and the solace of those who had gone before. Unhappily, the first generation at Red River had passed away before the settlement saw their fervent desire
fulfilled. Many circumstances combined to defer their just
expectations. Lord S'' "'irk had stipulated, at any rate with
the settlers of IS" , that a Presbyterian minister should
accompany them. One was actually chosen in the person
of the Rev. Donald Sage, • for whom the' settlers had a
natural preference, since he was a son of the Rev. Alexander
Sage, parish minister of Kildonan in Sutljerlandshire. At
his father's request, a delay of twelve months was granted to
enable the young missionary to perfect himself in the Gaelic im&2zm%v&&
S£~0£££*s9J
1033       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
language.    Whether the difficulties of the Celtic tongue, or
the disturbed and uncertain state of the colony deterred
him, it is not easy to learn ; but, for some cause or other
Mr. Sao-e never crossed the ocean, but settled down finally
as parish minister of Rosolis, in Cromarty.
Lord Selkirk, nevertheless, in his anxiety to satisfy the
spiritual wants of his people, at their request, authorized Mr.
James Sutherland, who had been appointed an elder in Scotland, and was one of the settlers, to marry and baptize; and
he was gratefully received by the Scots as a substitute,
meanwhile, for the pastor they were not destined to see for
thirty-five years thereafter. Mr. Sutherland was, without
doubt, the first preacher of the Gospel in the Great North-
West.* He appears to have been a man of great natural
endowments, though he could not be called a learned man,
and his services were welcomed, not merely by his own people, but also by the Company's officers and servants of all
creeds. '" Of all men," says Mr. Ross, "clergymen or others,
that ever entered this country, none stood higher in the estimation of the settlers, both for sterling piety and Christian
conduct, than Mr. Sutherland." (p. 31.) Unfortunately, as
if to crown their many other misfortunes, the settlers lost
the services of this excellent man in 1818, when he was carried off forcibly to Canada by the agents of the North-West
Company.    Wearied out with the heart-sickness of hope
* Mr. Ross i3 highly, but not unnaturally, indignant that the author of Hochelaga, and
Bishop Mountain should setk to deprive the Presbyterian Church of this honi ur. He
points out that tight years before the Rev. Mr. West, missionary of the Church of England, and Hudion Bay Companj's Chaplain. " crossed the Atlantic, baptism was administered, marriages solemnized, prayer meetings established, and the pure gospel proclaimed both by Presbyterians and Catholics." Red River Settlement, pp. 277-8. Probably the
reply would be that neither of these denominations preached the " pure Gospel," and that
Mr. Sutherland's ministrations were irregular and uncanonical. THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
1039
deferred,* and no communication having been received
from Lord Selkirk's agent, the settlers, appealed to.Mr.
Alexander Macdonell, recently appointed Governor, for assistance, but in vain. He was a Catholic, and therefore,
says a writer, " did not take much interest in Presbyterian
politics; but told the Scotch, by way of consolation, that
they might live as he himself did, without a church at all."
The next step was an earnest petition to the Rev. John Macdonald, of Urquhart Ross-shire, a minister well known to
them, asking him to ascertain Mr. Sago's -intentions, and, in
the event of his deciding to remain in Scotland, urging his
good offices. It would appear that this appeal was never
received, as no answer ever reached the distressed colony.
It cannot be said that Lord Selkirk, who was now no
more, was in any way responsible for the spiritual destitution of which the settlers complained. Not to speak of the
perpetual struggle in which he was engaged, the web of
violence and litigation in which his opponents involved him,
or were involved along with him unwittingly on both sides, his
Lordship's good faith was conspicuous in the matter of religious worship. It was not his fault that the people were
shepherdless; he had obtained them the services of Mr.
Sutherland, and it was not he who abducted him. And he
had marked out land, chosen by the settlers as the site of a
church and school-house, giving those who had already obtained the lots an equivalent elsewhere.
In October, 1821, the Rev. John West, A.M., an ordained
* It is almost difficult for readers in more favoured times and localities to appreciate
1 ally the yearning for religious ordinances, evident in the letters and documents of this
period, and much later. Much more, indeed, than the war of the Companies, religion constituted the politics and the daily life of these poor Highland settlers.   See Ross, Chap. v. 1040      THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
minister of the Church of England arrived in the colony.
It is hardly surprising that his advent was the signal for discontent rather than  rejoicing.    There may, perhaps, have
been a score of English churchmen in the colony, but nearly
all the Protestants were steadfast Presbyterians.    Nor did
the natural Scottish aversion to prelacy cause all the trouble.
They hated Episcopalian ordination.    There it stood before
them surpliced as of old ; they could not away with " the
mass-book," and Mr. West refused to yield an inch in the
matter of the liturgy; there was besides the trouble that
he spoke in English, and they longed to worship and to
hear their own native Gaelic from  the pulpit.    It was for
this they had waited, yearned and hoped during eight long
and troublous   years, and here was the upshot of it all.
As will be seen immediately, the settlers,  Highlanders   as
they were, proved not to be  the bigoted creatures,  Scots
Presbyterians are sometimes represented, and it is not unlikely that, if Mr. West had been a Highlander, and could
have read the liturgy and preached to his flock in the old
Celtic tongue, they might have submitted, with some grimace perhaps, but still submitted with Christian resignation
to kneeling at communion, and the cross in the baptism.
No  compromise was attempted, and the complaints of the
Scots who regarded Mr. West's intrusion as a flagrant breach
of the Selkirk stipulation were met, for the time, by the assurance that Mr. West would soon be replaced by a clergyman of their own Church.    It must be remembered, by the
way, that the building   employed for public worship had
been erected by the efforts of the settlers, and mainlv with THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
1041
their money and labour * Mr. West, finding that he could
not bend the stubborn will of the Scots, confined himself to
missionary labours at the Company's outposts and returned
to England in 1823.f
Notwithstanding their want of success, the Church Missionary Society sent out another clergyman, the Rev. David
J. Jones, and in 1825, another, the Rev. William Cochran :
who was destined to exercise much greater influence during his prolonged career of forty years.J The two Anglican
clergymen laboured together for some years, Mr. Jones having established another station some miles further down
the river. During a short visit to England this gentleman
added fuel to the fire by some remarks which appeared in
the " Missionary Register" of December 1827 : " I lament to-
say that there is an unchristian-like selfishness and narrowness of mind in our Scottish population; while they are
the most comfortable in their circumstances of any class in
our little community." Whether these I comfortable circumstances," considered from an offertory point of view,,
deepened Mr. Jones' lamentations over the "unchristian
selfishness" of the Scots, is not clear; he certainly seems to
* The Rev. gentleman appears to have reciprocated the feelings of the col nists, for he
remarks in his journal : " I cheerfully give my hand, and my heart to perfect the work. .1
expected a willing co-operation from the Scotch settlers; but was disappointed in my
sanguine hopes of their cheerful and persevering assistance, through their prejudices
against the English Liturgy, and the simple rites of our communion." Mr. West, apparently, knew nothing of Scottish ecclesiastical history, or, if he did, it was to little purpose.
t Hargrave : Red River, p. 104 ; Ross: p. 74.
X Mr. Ross, who writes with too obvious a Presbyterian bias, referring to the period when
Mr. Jones was alone, says, " the Rev. Mr. Jones was the only officiating clergyman among
the (Protestant) Europeans, although be belonged to the English, and they to the Scotch
Church. It was rather anomalous, in this section cf the colony, an English clergyman
without a congregation of his own creed, and a Scotch congregation without a minister."
p. 81. One is tempted to ask, what was the old mother Eii k of Scotland about all this
time. 1042        THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA
have been quite unconscious that the charge of narrow-
mindedness might be retorted by the recalcitants with at
least equal reason.
At anv rate, the settlers addressed the Governor more
than once, demanding the fulfilment of Lord Selkirk's promise; but all proved vain. Unhappily, some indiscreet
member of the Church Missionary Society still further ex-
-asperated the Scots, by writing to a friend, " Red River is.an
.English colony; and there are two English missionaries
there already ; and if the petitioners were not a set of canting hypocrites, they might very well be satisfied with the
pious clergymen they have got."
The Rev. Mr. Jones, however attached to his communion,
was essentially an amiable and charitable man; at this time,
therefore, he " became extremely kind and indulgent to the
Scots, and among other things laid aside such parts of the
Liturgy and formula of the Episcopalian Church as he knew
were offensive to his Presbyterian hearers. He also held
prayer-meetings among them after the manner of their own
Ohurch, without using the prayer-book at all, which raised
him higher than ever in their estimation, especially as they
understood that he could only do so at the hazard of forfeiting his gown. His own words were, " I know I am doing
good; and so long as I can do good to souls, the technical
forms of this or that Church shall not prevent me." * The
Rev. William (afterwards Archdeacon) Cochran was not so
conciliating at this period.   According to Mr. Ross, he said,
* His fellow-labourer, the Rev. Mr. Cochran, was not inclined, at first, to follow Mr.
Jones in his laudable efforts at conciliation. The latter's apology, which is too long for
hi ertlon (see Ross, p. 181,182), proves him to have been not merely a man of tact and
judgment, but a clergyman of an earnest, devout, and truly missionary spirit. THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.       104a
with some warmth, " I will preach to them the truths of
the Gospel, and they must listen to me; they have nothing
to do with our forms, I will not allow them an inch of their
will." The settlers, however, admired the rev. gentleman, in
spite, perhaps unconsciously because, of his stubbornness,
coupled as it was with transparent candour and fervent zeal
as a minister ; and from that time until the close of his long
work (1865) he remained a great favourite with the Scots.
Nevertheless, another application was made to Governor
Christie, and the answer was the cool suggestion to make
an application to Lord Selkirk's executors, who, as the
Company wellvknew, had ceased to have anything to do
with the Colony.*
Meanwhile, so deeply rooted was the love of the Scots for
their Church, that continued disappointment seriously
affected their industrial energies—about 114 left, in one
year, for the United States. Mr. Cochran, who was a pious
and earnest man, followed Mr. Jones's example and all went
on well, until two fresh labourers appeared in the field to
undo the work and set the clergy and their Presbyterian flocks by the ears. Fresh from head-quarters,
and knowing nothing about the Colony, they immediately upbraided Mr. Cochran with faithlessness to
the Church, and he, giving way in a moment of weakness,
kindled the old discontents once more. Matters were in a
more or less unsatisfactory state, until the arrival of Mr.
Finlayson, as Governor, at Red River. The new ruler was
& man  of great intelligence and active business habits,
* Mr, Christie, it is proper to note, was himself a Presbyterian, and an exceedingly kind
and affable man.
8 1044       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
shrewd, honest, and impartial.    The Presbyterians at once
resolved to lay their case before him and ask his counsel
and assistance.    Having listened to their complaints, he expressed his conviction that they had been badly treated ; at
the same time, as the matter rested with the Directors of the
•Hudson Bay Company, he advised them to draft a petition
which he undertook to forward to Sir George Simpson, the
Govemor-in-chief  of Rupert's  Land.     This petition was
signed by forty-three heads of families, at the head of the
list being the name of Alexander Ross, the author of the
work so frequently cited.    It contained a temperate statement of their grievance, with a reference to Lord Selkirk's
stipulation.*     This  document which was transmitted in
June, 1844, was violently assailed by the opponents of
Presbytery, but those who had signed it waited patiently
till June 1845, when an answer came from London.     The
Secretary of the Company was instructed to state that the
Company knew nothing of any such stipulation, and that,
had any such engagement of the Scots been, in fact, entered
into by Lord Selkirk, it was singular that he had taken no
steps to carry it out.    It was declared to be without precedent that the Company should maintain a Presbyterian
minister at Red River, and the only concession that could
* This petition, together with all the correspondence and affidavits, will be found in Ross-
work, pp. 342-851. One clause of the first seems worth inserting, because it expresses, in
mild terms, the deep-seated anxiety of the settlers upon the subject. " That the attention
of your petitioners has long been turned with painful solicitude to their spiritual wants in
this settlement, that widely as they are scattered among other sections of the Christian
family, and among many who cannot be considered as belonging to it at all, they are in
danger of forgetting that they have brought with them into this land, where they have
sought a home, nothing so valuable as the faith of Christ, and the primitive simplicity of
their own form of worship; and that their children are in danger of losing sight of those
Christian bonds of union and fellowship which characterize the sincere followers of Christ." THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.       1045
be made was a free passage for any clergyman the settlers
might choose to engage and undertake to pay. In reply,
the petitioners entered into the facts of the case from the
outset and forwarded two explicit affidavits. The first
having reference to the agreement with Lord Selkirk, the
attempt to engage the services of Mr. Sage, the temporary
ministrations of Mr. Sutherland, and the repeated applications to every successive Governor, was signed by Angus
and Alexander Mathieson, two of the settlers of 1815. The
second proved the assignment of two new lots to Alexander
McBeath and his son, John, one of the deponents, by Mr.
Alexander Macdonnell, the Governor, at the instance of
Lord Selkirk, these lots being set apart for a Presbyterian
Church and a school. The only reply vouchsafed to these
representations from the Hudson Bay House was the information the Company " can neither recognize the claim
therein advanced, nor do anything more towards the object
you have in view, than they have already expressed their
willingness to do." This curt note was dated 6th June,
184-6, fully two years after the original petition had been
drafted and nearly a twelve-month later than the communication to which it replied.
The settlers expecting this result from the tone of the
Company's first answer turned for assistance to another
quarter. Stirring events had occurred in the old land within
a year or two. The Disruption of 1843 had infused new
life into the decaying spirituality of Scotland, and the marvellous zeal and energy which piled together the Sustentation
Fund seemed to betoken the dawn of a new era in the
history of Presbyterianism.     The Red River Settlers were 1046       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
perhaps scarcely so strongly impressed with the non-intrusion
controversy as their brethren over the sea; indeed they felt
too forlorn and desolate to care much about patronage.
They at once, however, appealed with hope to the Free
Church in a letter, accompanied by all the correspondence
with the Company and other documents, addressed to the
Rev. Dr. Brown, of Aberdeen, Moderator of the General
Assembly. Owing to delays and miscarriages of letters, no
reply was received until the Summer of 1849, when the
Rev. Dr. Bcnar, Convener of the Colonial Committees wrote
expressing his regret that all efforts to secure a suitable
minister had hitherto failed. -A dispute followed regarding the Church and school lots, which had long been
occupied by the English Missionaries; the result was a
sort of informal offer of arbitration by Governor Colville,
one of the terms of which was that the dissidents should be
paid off, and suffered to have their own Church and burial
ground.'
At length, by the efforts of the Rev. Dr. Burns, Rev. Mr.
Rintoul and others; the long-promised Missionary arrived on
the 19th of September, 1851, in the person of the Rev. John
Black, late minister of Kildonan, in the Province of Manitoba. The joy with which the first clergyman of their Church
—the pastor for whom they had been looking and lonoinc
in vain during thirty-three years—was welcomed it is easy
to imagine. So soon as he set foot in the settlement three
hundred Presbyterians left the English Church in one day,
and were at last restored to the Communion of their fathers.
The final decision of the Committee on the Church property
question was so far in favour of the settlers,  that neither THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.        1047
Church nor churchyard were to be consecrated, but left
open to all. In 1853, however, the Presbyterians erected a
handsome stone edifice at Frog Plains or Kildonan, and
were at home at last.
The Rev. John Black, or Dr. Black, as he is entitled to
be called, deserves a more extended notice inasmuch as he
was not only the first Presbyterian Minister at Red River,
but has approved himself by twenty years' faithful service,
the model of all that a Christian Missionary in a new and
unsettled country should aspire to be. By the kindness of
the Rev. Dr. Reid, who has furnished the facts, the following
account of Dr. Black's life and services are laid before the
reader.* He was born in 1818, in the parish of Eskdale
Muir, Dumfrieshire, Scotland, whence his family removed
to Kirkpatrick. When John Black was about twenty-
three years of age, the family emigrated to the United
States. With them he resided for some years, in the State
of Delaware, employing himself, as most young Scots do in
the " auld land," both in teaching and stud v. Amongst his
pupils, who rose to eminence, were the Hon. W. Murray,
Judge of the Supreme Court of the State of New York, and
Dr. David Murra/, Superintendent of Education in Japan.
Even before leaving Scotland, Mr. Black had conceived a
desire of entering the the ministry, and a residence in the
United States had not only deepened that aspiration, but
given it definite form. He loved his native land and its
Church, and with that truly Scottish form of patriotism he
* The writer desires to make a general acknowledgment here to this indefatigable Agent
of the Presbyterian Church in Canada, for much assistance in preparing the portion of this
work devoted to religious progress in the Djininion.
„*f' 1048       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
had inherited, his religion and his love of country seemed to
have been inextricably mingled together. The train of
thought in such a mind—not difficult to follow—led Mr.
Black to look towards Canada, where his connection with
Scotland, and some members of the Presbyterian family of
churches would be more intimate than was possible 'in the
United States. It was after the disruption had done its
work in Canada (1844) that, in correspondence with the
Rev. Mr. Stark, of Dundas, first Moderator of the Presbyterian Church in Canada—the Free Church branch of Canadian Presbyterianism—he learned of a provision in the
making, to train young men for the ministry in Knox College, then on the eve of organization. At the opening of
the first session of Knox College, in the Autumn of 1844,
Mr. Black presented himself as a student, and, after having
prosecuted the course of study prescribed in the curriculum
of the College, and passed the required examinations,'was
licensed, in due form, as a preacher of the gospel. For a
considerable period, the Rev. Mr. Black was engaged in the
work of French evangelization; and it was in the midst of
these labours that he was summoned to step higher, and
become the first Presbyterian minister *of the Red River
Settlement. This sudden call to a sphere of labour almost
boundless in extent, and rich in opportunities for missionary usefulness, must have impressed Mr. Black with a full
sense of its value, as well as its difficulties. The first Presbyterian minister in the great North-West had a wide door
opened to him, but to enter in meant the sacrifice of much
which an ambitious man  holds dear.    The  fame and   the THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.       1049
emoluments of the city clergyman are not for him; nearly
all the comforts and pleasant companionship of society life
in settled communities must be left behind : and, taking his
cross upon his back, he must encounter all possibilities in
missionary life, to do the work of his Master—no human
mentor by his side; alone, yet not alone.    It can hardly be
ambition which tempts a man to undergo danger and difficulty in the missionary field; it b certainly not hope of
earthly reward, nor even love of adventure which stimulates
the   explorer,   which  prompts the pioneer missionary to
undertake the work.    Whatever  Mr. Black's feelings may
have  been, or whencesoever his inspiration and strength
were drawn, he set about his mission with the determination of an ambassador who was not without credentials. The
Scots settlers grouped about him enthusiastically ; but beyond their little oasis, lay a vast Sahara of spiritual desert.
Mr. Black's first step was to make sure of his own ground.
From the first, he resolved to keep aloof from politics, and
adhered to  that resolution throughout.    During the prolonged struggle with the Hudson Bay Company, he held
aloof, firmly persuaded that  the mission qt' the clergyman
ran upon a higher plane, and in a purer atmosphere, than
that of the agitator, or the conservative, however sincere.
Even at the unhappy period when the Anglican clergymen
whom the Company had championed,opposed it, to the moral
destruction of one of them, Mr. Black, whose church the
reigning authorities had persistently opposed, stood aloof
from the agitation of the malcontents.
The Rev. Dr. Black, throughout a distinguished career,
endeavoured to promote solely  the  religious  and  educa- 1050       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
tional progress of the people.   When they found themselves
excluded from the schools, it was he who founded and set in
operation the germ of Manitoba's educational system.    In
early years, he had, " in addition to his. usual clerical duties
at both stations, to teach a French and Latin class ever since
Bishop Anderson prohibited Presbyterian pupils from attending his schools."*    At this time Mr. Black's stipend, we
are informed,  amounted to  only £150 per annum, £50 of
which were subscribed by the Hudson Bay Company. The
rev. gentleman, however, did not stop there.   The Kildonan
station on Frog Plains, had been supplemented by another,
fourteen miles further down, now apparently  termed  " Little Britain."    It was to his untiring energy  that the first
systematic attempt to christianize the  Indians, owed  its
origin.    To the Rev. Mr. Cochran, afterwards Archdeacon,
much praise is due for fruitful efforts in that direction. Perhaps as the pastor  of the Hudson Bay Company, he felt
that they had hitherto  made no effort to fulfil  one of the
primary conditions of their charter; most  certainly as a
Christian pastor, he did what he could, not as a hireling of
the monopoly, but as  the faithful  servant  of  a Diviner
Master.    Dr. Black died in 1882.f
. In 1862, much of the Rev. Dr. Black's labour and anxiety
was removed by the advent upon the field of the Rev. James
Nisbet, the second Presbyterian minister at Red River, and
the first missionary especially set apart for labour amongst
the Indians.   A native of Glasgow, Scotland, he came with
* Ross, p. 860. Of course, our author is alone responsible for a view of Bishop Anderson's course, of which the writer of these words would be sorry to judge ex parte.
t It should be mentioned that the Rev. Dr. Black's degree of Doctor was bestowed upon
him, as was fitting, by the University of Queen's College, Kingston, in 1876. THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.        1051
his father and family to Canada in early life. " Like Dr.
Black," the Rev. Dr. Reid informs us, "he was one of the
first fruits of Knox College." After his ordination, he was
appointed minister of the church at Oakville, where he
laboured diligently in the sacred calling for twelve years,
from 1850 to 1862, and in addition to his ordinary pastoral
duties was constantly engaged in the Home Missionary
work of his Church. In 1862, he was invited to assist Dr.
Black in the work at Red River, and cheerfully undertook
the duty. During the two years of his co-operation with
Dr. Black, he was in preparation for his special work, and,
in 1864, he was formally designated as a Presbyterian missionary to the valley of the Saskatchewan, and at once entered upon the arduous duty assigned him. He was accompanied by Mr. George Flett, and Mr. John McKay, both
natives of the North-West, and well versed in the Cree language. The mission received the name of Prince Albert,
and there for ten years, Mr. Nisbet pursued his work, with
zeal and devotedness, although in the midst of grave difficulties and much discouragement. He died at Kildonan,
worn out prematurely by his evangelical labours on the
30th of September/1874, only a few weeks before the death
of his wife, who together with him had been spent in the
arduous work given them to do, leaving four orphan children. The testimony Mr. Nisbet left behind him might be-
coveted by many an ardent seeker after posthumous fame,
"he was a singularly unselfish and devoted missionary, and
all felt that his heart was in his work."
Of the other Presbyterian ministers engaged in the North- 1052       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
West, only brief notice can be taken. The Rev. Alex. Mathe-
•son, a Scot, by parentage, is a native of Red River. He
also was educated at Knox College, and for some time laboured at Lunenburg on the St. Lawrence. Returning to
his native Manitoba, he became, and is now, the Minister of
"'Little Britain," at the Lower Fort Garry. The Rev. G.
Bryce, M.A., is also a Scots-Canadian; he graduated in the
University of Toronto, and pursued his theological studies
at Knox College. In 1871, he was placed at the head of the
College of Manitoba. The Rev. Thomas Hart, M. A, professor in the same institution is from Perth, Ontario, and also
of Scottish extraction. His degree was obtained from
■Queen's University. One of.the latest additions to the clerical strength of the Presbyterian Church in Manitoba, is
the Rev. James Robertson, of Knox Church, Winnipeg. He
studied at University College, Toronto, and took a theological course at Princeton, N. J.
The best' general view of the work of the Church of England in the North-West will be found in Hargrave's Red
River, chap ix. The position in which Episcopalian ministers were placed, was anomalous. The Rev. Archdeacon
Cochran is justly regarded as the founder of that branch of
the Church of England which now boasts of no less than
five bishoprics in the North-West. It was he who, in 1836,
made the first attempt at Indian evangelization, amongst
the semi-civilized aborigines by founding the Indian Settlement, or Parish of St. Peter. Mr. Cochran was apostolic to the letter, for he "laboured with his hands" at
the  little   edifice  designed for instruction   and  worship. THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.        1053
He was pastor, teacher, architect, builder, and mechanic
combined; what is pleasing to learn is he did not toil
in vain, since what there is of civilization and settled life
amongst the Indians of the Province of Manitoba may
be justly traced to his early labours. It was no wonder
that he was beloved by the natives and warmly esteemed
by the Presbyterians, against whom, in the days of ignorance, he had sternly set his face. He was too near akin to
them in the national characteristics of fervour, persistence
and devotion to the highest interests of his fellow-men, to
be permanently estranged from their hearts by differences
in form or discipline. In their former foe they learned long
before the termination of his forty years' ministry to recognise one of their closest friends. Of the other Anglican
clergymen who took an active part in the work of early
days, may be mentioned the Rev. John McCallum and the
Rev. James (afterwards Archdeacon) Hunter.
The.present Bishop of Rupert's Land—a diocese constituted in 1849—was, and is, the Most Reverend Robert
Machray, D.D., the son of a Scottish advocate. He was
born at Aberdeen, Scotland, in 1832. Educated in the first
place at King's College in his native city, he graduated with
honours in mathematics at Cambridge. He was elected
Foundation Fellow of his college (Sidney) in 1855, and, in the
year following ordained as Deacon and Priest successively
by the Bishop of Ely. Having been honoured by other University appointments, he was for a short time Vicar of a parish near the University town. In 1865 he was consecrated
Bishop of Rupert's Land at Lambeth, by the Archbishop of "ZBRffirfffiffifflffi
1111
10:>4       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
Cmterbury, the Bishops of London, Ely and Aberdeen, as
well as*his predecessor the Rt. Reverend David Anderson*
The diocese, as originally established, included the entire
area now embraced in the Province of Manitoba and the
North-West Territories.    Bishop IVlachray entered upon the
arduous duties of his extensive charge in the true missionary
spirit.    He fearlessly encountered the perils and privations
of the wilderness, in the visitation of the distant and widely-
scattered mission stations of his diocese, and for several
years pursued a career of almost continued hardship and
endurance, travelling thousands of miles by canoe and dog-
sleigh, to the remotest confines of  the then little-known
region under his spiritual charge, in order to familiarize
himself with its needs. When owing to the influx of settlers,
it became necessary largely to extend the work of the Church,
his practical knowledge of the country and   its religious
requirements enabled him to present the case earnestly and
successfully to the Church in Canada and in England.    In
order to meet the continually increasing necessities arising
from the progress of settlement, the diocese was subdivided
by the constitution of other bishoprics, the See of Rupert's
Land since 1874, comprising the Province of Manitoba, with
a portion of the district of Cumberland, and the districts of
Swan River, Norway House, and Lac La Pluie.    On the
sub-division of the diocese, Bishop Machray was appointed
Metropolitan.    His zeal and energy in the pioneer work of
religious and educational organization are recognised, not
* Some of these biographical facts, as well as others which follow, are taken from The
Clerical Guide and Churchman's Directory, edited by Mr. C. V. Forster Bliss, and pub
lished at Ottawa. THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.       1055
only by his fellow-churchmen, but by all interested in the
moral and  intellectual advancement  of the North-West.
Bishop Machray's sterling qualities of head and heart, have
won the respect of all classes.   His pulpit style is direct and
practical rather than ornate, and is oft times characterized
by the eloquence which glows with the warmth of earnest
conviction, though it may not glitter with the tinsel of
rhetorical embellishment.    He holds the position of Chancellor and Warden of St. John's College, Manitoba, and Professor of Ecclesiastical History in the Theological College.
Another of the pioneer prelates of the North-West, claims
Scotland as his native land. The Right Reverend John McLean, D.D., D.C.L., was born at Portsay, Banffshire, in 1828.
He graduated at Aberdeen University in 1851. He came
to Canada shortly afterwards, and in 1858 was ordained
by the Bishop of Huron. His first charge was the curacy
of St. Paul's Cathedral, London. He removed to the North-
West in 1866, where he was appointed rector of St. John's
Cathedral, and Divinity Professor of St. John's College,
Winnipeg. A few years later he became archdeacon of Assi-
niboia. In 1871, he received the degree of D. C. L., from
the Universities of Trinity College, Toronto, and Bishop's
College, Lennoxville, and that of D.D., from Kenyon College,
Ohio. When the Diocese of Saskatchewan was constituted in
1874, the ripe scholarship and marked executive abilities of
Dr. McLean, were recognised by his nomination to the new
See. He was consecrated at Lambeth the same year by the
Archbishop of Canterbury—and has since laboured with
assiduity and success to meet as far as possible the rapidly 1056       TBS SOOT IN BRTTISU NORTH AMMRIOA.
increasing spiritual needs of the extensive and fertile region
under his charge, to which so large a proportion of the influx
of settlement has been directed.
When the record of North-Western evangelization is complete, and Christianity has gone hand in hand with civilization, in reclaiming the land from desolation and pagan
barbarism, no name in the list of those who laboured and
suffered for this glorious consummation will   be  held  in
greater honour or more affectionate remembrance, than that
of the Rev. George McDougall, Methodist missionary to the
Indians, who crowned a life of heroic struggle and self-sacrifice by a martyr's death, at his perilous post of duty. But-
little information can be obtained as to his early antecedents.
Born of a hardy sea-faring ancestry belonging to the north
of Scotland, he combined a hereditary courage and love of
adventure,  which  enabled him  cheerfully  to  brave   the
dangers and hardships of life on the prairies, with a singular
gentleness and refinement, and an overflowing- kindliness of
disposition which drew all hearts towards him.    Early in
life he became convinced that duty called him to a career of
missionary effort among the Indians of the North-West. He
began his labours about the year 1850, travelling westward
through the wildest and most desolate regions of what was
then an almost unknown land, establishing mission stations,
familiarizing himself with the languages of the Indian tribes,
and carrying the light of the Gospel into the haunts of
heathen darkness. In the winter of 1875-6, he was stationed
at Morleyville, Bow River, in the Rocky Mountain region,
where he proposed to establish an orphanage for the support THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.       105?
and education of destitute Indian children. Letters which
he wrote a few weeks before his death to the Hon. James Fer-
rier, superintendent of the St. James'-street Sabbath-school,
Montreal, which had largely aided his schemes by contributions, give a vivid and interesting picture of his work and its
glorious results. Speaking of his journey westward from
Victoria to Fort McLeod, he says : " We were guided by the
Stony interpreter, James Dixon, a very remarkable man,,
•who for years has been the patriarch of his people. James,,
in a five days' journey could point out every spot of interest;
now showing us the place where more than twenty-five years
ago, the venerable Rundle visited them and baptized many
of their people—a little further on, and the location was-
pointed out to us, where his father was killed by the Black-
feet, then again from a hill our friend pointed out the spot
where a company of German emigrants, while crossing from.
Montana to the Saskatchewan were murdered—not one left
to tell the painful story. This occurred seven years ago.
How wonderful the change ! We can how preach the Gospel
to these very people, who, but a few years ago sought the
life of every traveller coming from the American side." The
destitution of many of the Indians, owing to the disappearance of the buffalo, on which they were almost entirely
dependent, excited his deepest commiseration and redoubled
his determination to make some provision for the physical
necessities of the young and helpless, while imparting together with a Christian education, such an industrial training
as would fit them to become self-supporting under the new
order of things.   "November 6th," he writes, "we reached wmmm
^^3~£g^g"Z2*£"^~£*£*£33
1058       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
the encampment of our friend Dixon. There were 380 Stonies
present. Next morning we held a service, and though the
frozen grass was the best accommodation we could offer our
hearers, yet no sooner was the announcement made, than
men, women and children gathered round us, and sang with
great energy, ' Salvation, Oh, the joyful sound.' Here I
counted over 100 boys and girls who ought to be attending
school, and who I hope will be as soon as we can get a place
erected sufficiently large to accommodate them." To effect
his plans he laboured steadily with his own hands at the
work of building. " At present," he sensibly says, " if your
missionaries would succeed, they must not be afraid of a little
manual labour."
Unfortunately this valiant and stout-hearted soldier of the
Cross was never destined to put his benevolent project into
operation. On the 24th of January, 1876, while hunting
buffalo about thirty miles from Morleyville, to procure a supply of me'at for the mission, he started to return to camp in
advance of his party. It was a wild, stormy night, and a
fierce wind swept the prairie laden with drifting snow. Mr.
McDougall. missed his way, and as a protracted search by his
friends proved fruitless, the painful conclusion that he had
perished from cold and exhaustion forced itself upon them.
Twelve days afterwards his body was found by a half-breed,
stretched in death on the snow-covered prairie, the folded
hands and placid expression of the features, showing that the
intrepid soul of the missionary had met death in the spirit
of calm and trustful resignation—
" Like one who draws the drapery of his couch
Around him, and lies down to pleasant dreams." CHAPTER V.
THE  CANADIAN  PACIFIC KAILwAT.
APPY is the nation that has no history," is an
aphorism that has lost much of its force by the
adoption of more rational and instructive historical methods.
It was strictly true in the days when popular history was a
mere record of battles and sieges, treaties made and violated,
the pomp and parade of courts and the intrigues of diplomatists. But in an age when historical research and contemporary observation are brought to bear upon the life of
the people, upon institutions and manners and industries,
upon progress in the arts and sciences, and intellectual and
religious advancement, the eras of peaceful development offer
the widest scope and entail the most arduous labours upon
the historian. The interest of the narrative is no longer
centred upon a comparatively" small group of leading figures—
upon a few salient actions of overshadowing importance. It
is diffused over a wider theatre where many diverse movements are in progress. There is no great crisis—no pivotal
point of national destiny towards- which all energies are
bent and all eyes directed. But the minor events and influences which make up the sum of national life are so scattered as to area and so involved^ in their relations to each
other, that the field-glass of the chronicler of the times of
storm and pressure needs to be exchanged for an instrument
9 1060
THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
at once telescopic in range and microscopic in closeness of
vision. The recent annals of North-Western progress are a
record of peaceful and rapid advancement, in which, among
the active and energetic spirits who have been the directing
forces of settlement, there are many whose names are worthy of honourable mention—few who loom up so largely as
to throw the rest into shadow. The preservation of the due
historical perspective is therefore a matter of difficulty.
Canadians have been backward in realizing the grandeur
and value of their national heritage. Accustomed for generations to the contrast between the narrow limits of Old Canada, and the vast expanse of half a continent to the South^
the possession of which has done so much to form the American character, both as regards its faults and its virtues, it
is not surprising that, for some time after the annexation of
the North-West territory, public opinion failed to appreciate
the new acquisition at anything like its true value. This was,
no doubt, owing fully as much to the lack of anvthing like
, reliable information concerning the real character of the country and its fitness for settlement, as to the Canadian habit of
self-depreciation—which, by the way, is a habit of thought
rather than of speech. The empire, upon the possession of
which Canada had entered, was literally a terra incognita.
Great spaces yet untravelled, great lakes whose mystic shores
The Saxon rifle never heard, nor dip of Saxon oars ;
Great herds that wander all unwatched, wild steeds that none have tamed,
Strange fish in unknowiPstreams, and birds the Saxon never named
Deep mines, dark mountain crucibles where Nature's chemic powers
Work out the great Designer's will—all these ye say are ours!
It was not until the observations of travellers and the
researches of men of science, corroborated by the actual
experience of the pioneers of settlement, established beyond THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.       1061
a doubt the existence of large areas of fertile arable land,
that public sentiment rose in some measure to a due estimation of the resources and possibilities of the North-West.
Prominent among those whose keen perception and graphic
descriptive powers have  contributed to  bring about this
result is the Rev. George M. Grant, to whose book, " Ocean
to Ocean," reference has already been made.    In 1872, Mr.
jSandford Fleming, chief engineer of the Canadian Pacific
Railway, determined to undertake a journey across the continent in order to familiarize himself with the general fea-
tures of the route laid down by the preliminary surveys of the
previous year.    He was accompanied by Rev. Mr. Grant in
the capacity of secretary; and Dr. Arthur Moren, of Halifax,
Prof. John Macoun, of Belleville, and Mr. Charles Horetzky,
an ex-Hudson Bay Company official, were also of the party.
" Ocean to Ocean " was the outcome of this expedition.   The
party left Toronto on the 16th of July, reached Prince Arthur's Landing by steamer from Collingwood, and travelled to
Winnipeg over the Dawson road.  The writer bears frequent
'testimony to the prevalence of the Scottish element in the
few and far between stopping-places and settlements along
this route.    The first halt after leaving Thunder Bay was
made at "fifteen mile shanty," in charge of Robert Bowie,
an Alloa man, of whom it is gratefully recorded that he gave
the party the best dinner they had enjoyed since leaving
Toronto.    The station at the Matawan was in care of Mr.
Aitken from Glengarry, who in two months had converted a
fire-swept desert into a comfortable and prosperous home.
A Scot who accompanied the party on one stage of their
journey as teamster from the North-West Angle, was earning 1062       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA
$30 per month and board, and saving four-fifths of his wages
with the intention in a few months of buying a farm on the
Red River. At White Birch River they found the keeper of
the station, a Scotsman "like the rest," and a very intelligent man, able to furnish much information about the country After the usual vicissitudes of canoe and waggon travel,
over this picturesque but rough and desolate region, Winnipeg was reached. The writer notes the prosperity of the
Selkirk settlement, owing to the thrifty habits of the Highlanders and their descendants. At" Silver Heights," six miles
up the Assiniboine, the residence of Mr. Donald A. Smith,
the travellers received a veritable Highland welcome, and
met, among others, Mr. Christie, a short time before chief
factor at Edmonton, Mr. Hamilton, of Norway House, and
Mr. McTavish.
The party commenced the journey across the prairies with
a full equipment of Red River carts, saddle horses and buck-
boards. Shortly after leaving Winnipeg they fell in with
Rev. George McDougall, the intrepid Methodist missionary,,
whose lamented death a few years later left such a gap in
the ranks of missionary enterprise. Mr. McDougall accompanied the party to Edmonton, where he was at that time
stationed. They found a little village on the site of what is
now the thriving town of Portage la Prairie, and at Rat
Creek, ten miles further west, the houses of several settlers.
The names of Grant and Mackenzie sufficiently indicate the
origin of the two prosperous farmers, recently from Ontario,
at whose houses the travellers dined. From this point onwards Mr. Grant was impressed with the wonderful richness
and fertility of the prairie land, and puts on record his- THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.       106 3
amazement that so little should have been done to open up
these vast and productive areas for settlement. Crossinc
the Assiniboine at Fort Ellice, the party turned their course
towards the North Saskatchewan, by way of the Touchwood
Hills, passing through a region of rolling prairie, the beauty
and luxuriance of which delighted them. From Carlton they
proceeded along the valley of the Saskatchewan, by the trail
on the north bank of the river. At Victoria they visited the
mission established by Mr. McDougall among the Crees and
half-breeds. He had been assigned to another post at Edmonton, and his successor was Mr. Campbell. The teacher
of the Sunday-school was Mr. McKenzie, and the interpreter
Mr. Tait. The observations made during this portion of the
journey as to the general character of the country, and its
fitness for settlement, are the most valuable part of the
work—as a vindication of the soil and climate of the North-
West from the prejudices of unreasoning ignorance and the
malignant aspersions of American railroad and land agents.
Summing up his experiences of the route traversed as far as
Edmonton, the writer says :—
"Speaking generally of Manitoba and our North-West,
along the line we travelled, it is impossible to doubt that it
is one of the finest pasture countries in the world, and that
a great part of it is well adapted for cereals. The climato-
logical conditions are favourable for both stock-raising and
grain-producing. The spring is nearly as early as in Ontario, the summer is more humid and therefore the grains,
grasses, and root crops grow better; the autumn bright and
cloudless, the very weather for harvesting; and the winter
has less snow and fewer snow-storms, and though in many 1064       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
parts colder, it is healthy and pleasant because of the still
dry air, the cloudless sky and the bright sun. The soil is
almost everywhere a peaty or sandy loam resting on clay.
Its only fault is that it is too rich—crop after crop Is raised
without fallow or manure." After considering fairly the
objection's raised as to the scarcity of fuel and water in some
parts, otherwise adapted to settlement, and the summer'
frosts which occasionally nip the grain in the higher latitudes—though, as he takes care to explain, the thermometer
is by no means a guide as to the effects of cold in this region
—•' it is impossible " he continues " to avoid the conclusion
that-we have a great and fertile North-West, a thousand
miles long and from one to four hundred miles broad, capable of containing a population of millions."
The revelations of yesterday are the commonplaces of today. These passages seem now but the merest truisms—the
presentation of a story which has grown stale, and hackneyed by the reiterations of the tourist and the newspaper
correspondent, the lecturer and the politician. But they
were far from being truisms when first published, or for some
time later. The researches of Prof. Macoun, who with Mr.
Horetzky, separated from Mr. Fleming's party at Edmonton,
and proceeded to the Peace River, did much to dispel popular
prejudice as to the climate. But misconceptions of this sort
die slowly. His report published in 1874, showing from the
flora of that region, that the summer climate of Peace River
in 56Q north latitude is equal to, if not better than, that of
Belleville in latitude 44°, was much criticized and his statements ridiculed as extravagant. Even in 1877, when sur-
veys had been pushed in all directions, the Minister of Public THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA,       1065
Works, in asking the Professor to present a report on the
country, thought it necessary to caution him not to draw on
his imagination, and the latter knowing the incredulity
which Existed as to the productive capacity of the North-
West, dared not present the conclusion he arrived at, from
careful estimates that the country comprised fully 200,000,-
000 acres of agricultural land — fearing that the figures
would appear altogether incredible—" As a salve to my conscience," he writes, " I kept to the large number of 200,000,-
000 acres, but said that there were 79,920,000 of arable land,
and 120,400,000 acres of pasture, swamps and lakes." *
The Fleming party continued their expedition to British
Columbia, by way of the Yellow Head Pass, reaching Yic-
toria on the 9th of October, after a journey of nearly three
months. Mr. Grant on his return home by way of the Union
Pacific, was struck with the contrast between the arid alkaline plateaus of Utah, Nevada, Wyoming and Eastern Nebraska, the parched earth for hundreds of miles barely yielding support to a scanty growth of sage-brush, and the rich,
warm soil of the Canadian prairies clothed everywhere with
a luxuriant vegetation. Yet while population had been attracted to the great American desert and enterprise had carried thither the railroad, and the telegraph, the fertile belt
remained unpeopled and unproductive. The great essential
precursor of civilization in its westward march, the railway,
was yet in the future.
The tendency of public opinion during the early phases of
the Canadian Pacific Railway enterprise, was to regard this
undertaking rather in the light of a political necessity than
* Macoun's Manitoba and the great North-West, p. 609. 1066
THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA,
a factor of prime exigency in the work of populating the
North-West. The scheme was urged as essential to the
maintenance of British institutions in regions to which a
large influx of population from the southward, was likely to
be attracted; it was accepted as a corollary of Confederation;
but not generally recognised as an undertaking likely to be
materially remunerative. To the spirit of patriotic emulation excited by the giant strides of railway development in
the United States, and to the tenacity with which the British Columbians in framing the terms of union insisted upon
this material link as a sine qua non, more than to any general conviction of the practical commercial utility of the enterprise was its inception due. The engineering difficulties
in the way were regarded by many as insuperable. Capt.
Palliser who in 1857 had explored the country, as the head
of an expedition sent out by the imperial government had
decisively declared communication between Canada and the
Pacific slope through British territory impracticable. " The
time " he said " has forever gone by for effecting such an object, and the unfortunate device of an astronomical boundary line has completely isolated the central American possessions of Great Britain from Canada, in the East, and also
almost debarred them from any eligible access from the Pacific coast on the west." With this official condemnation of
the scheme on record it is not surprising that when the conditions of the bargain with British Columbia were announced the opinion widely prevailed that the stipulation
for the construction of the road within ten years, was likely
to remain a dead letter. It was reserved for the consummate scientific ability, the tireless energy, £he thorough-go- THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
1067
ing assiduity and indomitable resolution of a Scot to demonstrate the falsity of Capt. Palliser's conclusions, as, it has
since been for the enterprise, commercial sagacity and executive capacity of a company of Scotsmen to crown the
work.
When the preliminary work of survey was undertaken
in 1871 the position of chief engineer was assigned to Mr.
Sandford Fleming, a name that will always be closely associated with the greatest public undertakings of the Dominion.
Mr. Fleming was born at Kirkcaldy in Fifeshire, Scotland,
on the 7th of January, 1827, his father being a mechanic
named Andrew Greig Fleming. The maiden name of his
mother was Elizabeth Arnot. During his school days his
mind exhibited a decided bent in the direction of mathematics and at an early age he was placed under articles with
an engineer and surveyor. Having acquired a practical
knowledge of the profession he emigrated to Canada at the
age of eighteen. His progress in his adopted country was
slow at first as he was for some years unable to obtain any
position which would afford him the opportunity of gaining
recognition for his abilities. During a portion of this period
of weary waiting for professional advancement he resided
in Toronto, where he was one of the first to take an interest
in the Canadian Institute. In 1852 he was appointed one
of the engineering staff on the Northern Railway, at that
time known as the Ontario, Simcoe and Huron Railway.
His attainments quickly won him promotion and in a few
years he became chief engineer of the line. During his connection with this company his services were also sought in
the promotion   of- other public works.    He  subsequently 1063        THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
visited the Red River Settlement to ascertain whether it
would be practicable to build a railroad connecting it with
old Canada.    In 1863 the inhabitants of the settlement addressed a memorial to the Imperial government praying for •
railway communication with Canada through British territory, and Mr. Fleming was entrusted with the mission of
urging the construction of the line.    He had several inter-
views on the subject with the Duke of  Newcastle, then
Colonial Secretary, but the project did not at  that time
assume any definite shape.    On Mr. Fleming's return from
England be was entrusted with the task of making a preliminary survey of a line of railway to connect the maritime
provinces with Canada.    The scheme was not pushed until
the accomplishment of Confederation in 1867 rendered the
construction of the Intercolonial Railway imperative upon
the Canadian Government—when the work was carried to
a successful issue under the direction of Mr. Fleming as
Chief Engineer—and formally opened on the 1st of July,
1876.    The triumph thus achieved over physical obstacles
of no ordinary character placed him in the front of his profession and singled him out as pre-eminently fitted for the
yet more important and responsible charge of opening up a
highway for commerce between the East and West over
swamp and prairie, river and muskeg, across the towering
barrier of the Rockies, winding among British Columbia's
" sea  of  mountains,"  through passes  deemed   impassable,
bridging chasms that yawn destruction and tunnelling cliffs
that frown defiance, onward, slowly, toilsomely but resist-
lessly onward to where the Pacific portal invites the commerce of the East and the perpetual westward  surge of THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.       106^
humanity culminates in paradox as the pioneer confronts
the Mongolian.
Mr. Fleming's connection with the Canadian Pacific continued until 1880 when he resigned his position on finding
himself unable to agree with the Government as to the location of the railway. His great public services have been
fitly recognised by his receiving from Her Majesty the
honour of being created a Companion of the Order of St.
Michael and St. George. In 1880 he was elected Chancellor
of Queen's University, Kingston. He is an able and voluminous writer on topics connected with his profession. In
addition to the valuable official reports of the various
enterprises with which he has been connected he has' published a history of the Intercolonial Railway and has furnished many instructive contributions to the Canadian
Journal and other scientific publications. In 1855 he was
united in marriage to Miss Ann Jean Hall, daughter of
the late Sheriff Hall, of the County of Peterborough.
When British Columbia entered the union the practicability of the Pacific Railway was still an unsolved problem.
No time was lost in setting on foot the work of survey in
the summer of 1871.- On July 20th, the day on which the
union was formally consummated, a party left Yictoria for
the mountains, operations having been begun in the East
some weeks before. The quarter to which attention was
specially directed was the Yellow Head Pass in the Rocky
Mountains which it was supposed might offer an available
route. On examination it was found that no insuperable
obstacle existed to the construction of a road through this
pass to Kamloops in the interior of the Province.    The main 1070       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
question was settled.    The Canadian Pacific was a practicable scheme and henceforward it was merely a choice between
longer and shorter, easier or more difficult routes. The immensity of the enterprise, which had hardly been fully considered
in the anxiety to make terms with the British Columbians,
sbegan to be more fully realized during the toilsome and
tedious years of exploratory survey that followed.    The difficulties encountered, the fatigues and perils endured by those
engaged in this work are deserving of more recognition than
they have received or are ever likely to receive at the hands of
the country in whose service these brave soldiers on the
skirmish line of the advancing forces of civilization toiled
and suffered and not unfrequently died-—for if " peace hath
her victories not less renowned than war," she has also her
tragedies,—her killed whose names find place in no bulletins
and to whose memories no lofty monuments are reared, and
her wounded who go unpensioned and undecorated.    The
total list of lives lost in connection with the survey up to
the year 1878, by various " moving accidents of flood and
field " numbered thirty-eight.    The names of Sinclair, Ma-
theson, Spence, Hamilton, McMillan, Scott and others which
appear on the death-roll indicate that Scotland can claim as
her sons a very large proportion of the men to whose faithful and arduous service in the face of the dangers and hardships of the wilderness, Canada owes so heavy a debt of gratitude.    The  vast amount of information concerning the
physical features of a region of which nothing was accurately known excepting along the routes followed by the few
travellers who had left their observations on record, gained
by the exhaustive and elaborate system of surveys carried THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.       1071
out under Mr. Fleming's direction is indicated by the statement made by him in a paper read before the Colonial Institute on the 16th of April, 1878, that the total length of
explorations made during the preceding seven years exceeded 47,000 miles, no less than 12,000 miles having been
measured by chain and spirit-level, yard by yard.* The expense of these surveys amounted to about three and a half
million dollars, and the engineering force employed numbered about a thousand men of all grades.
Meanwhile the chances and changes of political conflict
. had resulted in material alterations in the character of the
scheme. As we have seen, the Conservative policy was to
secure the construction of the road by private enterprise,,
stimulated by lavish subsidies of money and land. Mr.
Mackenzie's administration undertook to build and operate
it as a government work. There is much to be said on
either side of the argument as between these two systems.
It must be admitted that there is a growing public opinion
in favour of the resumption by the state of the control of
the public lines of traffic and communication, implied in the
old phrase the " king's highway." This feeling has been intensified by the oppressive and arbitrary conduct of the
American railway magnates, whose position has aptly been
compared to that of the robber-barons of the Rhine in feudal times. In a country where the great food-producing
districts are separated by long distances both from the mass
of home consumers and the nearest points of shipment to the
foreign market, the railway king holds industry and commerce by the throat.    It is not surprising that the unscru-
* Report of Canadian Pacific Railway, 1878 p, 88. 1072       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
pulous use of this power in regulating tolls according to the
rule of " what the traffic will bear," and the frequent contemptuous disregard of the public interest, have given rise
to a strong agitation in favour of state interference. Many
•consider that the history of railroad construction and management in the United States was well calculated to serve
as a warning rather than an example for imitation, in the
matter of entrusting large corporations with monopoly privileges. On the other hand, the danger of leaving a gigantic
•enterprise like the Canadian Pacific to be owned and worked
by a government which would always be under the temptation to use it as a political machine, was calculated to impress Canadians more forcibly than an evil of which their own
experiences had been comparatively slight. Moreover, the
success of the Mackenzie administration in the work of construction had not been such as to influence public sentiment in
favour of government railways. The progress made had been
slow. True, the painstaking and elaborate system of preliminary surveys, so indispensable to the success of the undertaking, had been pushed forward with- creditable thorough-,
ness and energy; but the public are apt to judge by tangible
results, visible on the surface, ponderable by scales or steelyard, measurable by tape-line or yard-stick, computable in
current coin of the realm. The actual mileage of railwav
completed during the Mackenzie regime was but 227 miles,
■comprising sections from Selkirk to Rat Portage and from
Fort William to English River. The rich prairie region, to
the value of which the country was now thoroughly aroused,
had not been opened up. Sir John Macdonald, on his return
to power, adopted for the time being the policy of his pre- THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.       1073
decessor, with the object of securing the settlement of the
country as speedily as possible. The work of construction
was hastened. Additional contracts were let, including that
for the connecting link between English River and Rat Portage, so as to complete the summer route to Winnipeg by way
of Lake Superior, and the Pembina branch was finished,
effecting a connection with the American railway system.
The route West of Winnipeg, which, as originally laid down,
took a north-westerly direction, crossing the narrows of Lake
Manitoba, and traversing the low-lying lands at the base of
Duck Mountain, was deflected considerably to the southward,
in order to open up a country better fitted for settlement. On
the Pacific slope the road was put under contract from Yale
to Kamloops, a distance of 127 miles, the Burrard Inlet route,
■via the Yellow Head pass and Tete Jaune Cache, of which
Mr. Fleming was a strong upholder, being adopted. In 1880,
the number of miles under construction was 722.
Such was the position of matters when the Syndicate contract was entered into inpursuance of the originalpolicy which
the Conservative administration had all along kept steadily in
view. That at length, after repeated attempts to interest
•capitalists in this great work a successful issue was reached,
the completion of the line assured, the government relieved from its vast responsibilities, and the country from
the risk of continuous and indefinite losses in the subsequent
working of the road, is due to the foresight, shrewdness and
■enterprise of the association of Scotsmen, who, when others
hesitated or shrunk back appalled at the magnitude of the
venture, realized the immense possibilities held out by the
offer of the government, and grasped the opportunity let slip W^^S^MS^M^W^^^^^^^Wy.
•gfflsizffiEzSSlS&S.
1074       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
by less energetic or more timorous competitors. And here
brief biographical notices of the leading members of the
Syndicate may be given.
Mr. George Stephen, of Montreal, the leading spirit of the
enterprise, is a native of Ecclefechan, Dumfries-shire, noted
as being also the birthplace of Thomas Carlyle,—a locality of
which he evidently entertained the same opinion as Daniel
Webster did of his native New Hampshire, that it was " a
good place to emigrate from," as at an early age he left it
for the British metropolis. There he entered the employ of
the extensive mercantile house of J. M. Pawson & Co., St.
Paul's Churchyard, and in this practical training school soon
acquired a thorough knowledge of commercial life. Dissatisfied with the prospect of rising in the world afforded by
the business outlook of the Old Country, he emigrated to
Canada about the year 1853, on the advice of his relative,
the late William Stephen, senior member of the firm of W»
Stephen & Co., Montreal. He entered the warehouse of the
firm, and in a few years obtained a junior partnership, having by his assiduity and fidelity to their interests made himself indispensable. Mr. Wm. Stephen died in 1862, and his
interest was purchased by the subject of this sketch, who,
on obtaining an ascendency in the business, engaged extensively in the cloth manufacturing industry. This new departure proved a highly profitable one—so much so, that he
soon withdrew from the wholesale business and devoted his
attention exclusively to manufacturing. He was chosen a
director of the Bank of Montreal, in which he was a large
O
shareholder, and when the presidency was resigned by Mr.
King, was elected to till the position.   Mr. Stephen's first THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.       1075
connection with railway enterprise was his joining a syndicate for the purchase of the interest of the Dutch holders of
the bonds of the St. Paul and Pacific Railway, which gave
them control of the partially constructed line.  Realizing the
importance of this road as a link in the chain of railway
communication with the North-West via the Pembina branch
of the Canadian Pacific, they carried the work of construction rapidly forward, and soon found themselves in possession of an exceedingly profitable line.    They were in a position to control not merely the entire traffic of the Canadian
North-West, but to render tributary a large area of Minnesota and Dakota.    The income of this monopoly they devoted to widening the sphere of their operations by constructing connecting lines in various directions, making St
Paul the focal point for their system.   They ^re-named their
line the St. Paul and Manitoba Railway, as until the section
of the Pacific along the north shore of Lake Superior is
completed, it will, for half the year, remain the only outlet
for the now vastly increased trade of the Canadian North-
West.    Mr. Stephen is a cousin of Hon. Donald A. Smith,
associated  with him in the St. Paul and Manitoba and
Canadian Pacific railway companies.   His adopted daughter
was united in marriage to the son of Sir Stafford Northcote,
during the sittings of the Joint High Commission which
negotiated the Washington Treaty, young Northcote serving
as an attache' at the time.   Mr. Stephen exercises a lavish
hospitality, but is pre-eminently a man of affairs, and more
at home in the office or at a directors' meeting than in social festivities.
Mr. Duncan Mclntyre, as the name indicates, is of Celtic
10 Illlllllll
1076       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
♦origin, and was born in the Highlands of Scotland not far
north of Aberdeen.   He came to Canada in the year 1849,
settling in Montreal, where he obtained employment as a
■clerk with the well-known mercantile firm of   Stuart &
-Mclntyre, in whose  service he remained for  many years.
His duties necessitated his travelling a good deal in the Ottawa Valley, and his observations of the locality impressed
him strongly with its great natural advantages.    During
his intervals of leisure, he frequently joined hunting parties,
and in this way travelled through the wilder and less accessible portions of the Ottawa district.    He thus acquired a
minute topographical knowledge of the country, which afterwards stood him in good stead in connection with railway
matters.     Mr. Mclntyre had a prosperous business career.
He acquired a partnership in the firm of Stuart & Mclntyre,
and as the other members retired, found the  concern in his
own hands.    His thoughts were, however, turned in other
directions, by his interest in the development of the Ottawa
Valley.   From the first he believed in the future of the
• Canada Central Railroad, of which he became one of the
directors.    He embarked with Mr. Foster, President of the
road, in the Canada Central Extension scheme, taking a
share in the contract for construction—and by a succession
of transactions, into the details of which it is not necessary
to enter, became president and virtual owner of the Canada
Central.    Mr. Mclntyre's foresight as to the important character of this road, is amply justified by its natural position
as a link in the great inter-oceanic chain.
Mr. Robert B. Angus, like his colleagues, is a Scot by birth
as well as by blood—Bathgate, near Edinburgh, being his THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.       1077
native place. He was one of four brothers, all remarkable
for the early developed brilliancy of their talents. His
scholastic education was received at Edinburgh, and his
business training in a bank at Manchester, for he left his
native country when quite a youth. When he arrived in
Canada in 1852, he looked for similar employment. From
the position of junior clerk in the Bank of Montreal, he
speedily rose to more responsible trusts. He was for a time
in charge of the Chicago branch, and after Mr. King had attained the position of general manager, Mr. Angus became
assistant manager. He succeeded his chief in the manage-
rial post, which after a time he quitted to take a share in
the St. Paul and Manitoba syndicate. Mr. Angus is regarded as a shrewd man of business and strict in his dealings.
He is, however, none the less popular, as he has many amiable qualities, being a typical instance of that dual nature
which is not uncommon especially among Scotsmen, combining rigid adherence to the letter of a bargain and close
calculation of expenditure in business matters with open-
handed generosity in social intercourse.
Mr. Donald Alexander Smith was born in Scotland in the
year 1821 and early in life came to the North-West in the
service of the Hudson Bay Company. Few men have been
as closely identified with the progress of civilization in the
North-West as Mr. Smith, who has held many important
and responsible positions and been connected with various
enterprises for the development of the country. He rose
to the post of resident governor and chief commissioner of
the Hudson Bay Company, and in 1870 was appointed a
member of the Executive Council for the North-West terri- ll '
1078       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
tories. He was a special commissioner to enquire into the
causes, nature, and extent of the Riel rebellion. For three
years he represented Winnipeg and St. John in the Manitoba
Legislative Assembly, resigning his seat in 1874. When
Manitoba was admitted into the Union in 1871 Mr. Smith was
returned as a member of the House of Commons for the
constituency of Selkirk and was re-elected on several occasions. In politics he is a Conservative. The estimation in
which he is held by the people of Manitoba has been testified
by his election as president of the Provincial Agricultural
Association, of the Selkirk St. Andrew's Society, and vice-
president of the Dominion Rifle Association. He is a director of several banks and commercial companies and a member of the Board of Management of the Manitoba College
(Presbyterian). He married Isabella, daughter of the late
Mr. Richard Hardisty, at one time of the British army but
subsequently like himself an official of the Hudson Bay
Company.
It would obviously be out of place in a work of this
character to enter into any detailed account of the progress
of the Canadian Pacific since it was handed over to the Syndicate. It is sufficient to say that under their energetic
management the entire prairie section of the road has been
completed so that to-day Canada is in possession of a line of
communication reaching from Thunder Bay to the Rocky
Mountains. The remaining sections of the road are being
vigorously pushed forward. The link to the North shore of
Lake Superior, connecting Thunder Bay with Callender, the
former terminus of the line as originally laid out, is under
construction and the work is being carried on as fast as the THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.       1079
physical obstacles in the way will permit. The Company
having acquired the Canada Central and amalgamated it
with the Pacific, Montreal will be the Eastern terminus of the
line and the outlet for the great volume of North-Western
traffic. The route through the Rocky Mountains to Kam-
loops is as yet undetermined. This is the piece de resistance
of the undertaking and further surveys of the region are
yet in progress to ascertain the most available line. It cannot be doubted that the same energy, decision, and administrative capacity which have already accomplished so much
in grappling with the difficulties of this immense enterprise^
will be equal to the yet more formidable difficulties to be
encountered, and that in a very few years the debt which
Canada owes to Scottish resolution and force of character will
be still further augmented by the successful completion of
the great trans-continental railway. gnnn
CHAPTER VI.
THE (INFLUX OF SETTLEMENT.
I HERE is no feature of our national life more creditable
to the Canadian people than the contrast afforded by
the state of society during the transition periods of early
settlement, to that which prevailed in the United States under similar circumstances. Not only has the treatment of
the Indians by the pioneers of colonization from the days of
the Pilgrims down to the present time, been a foul blot upon
the American name, but the general lawlessness and disregard of social and religious restraints which as a rule obtain
in the newer American settlements have become proverbial.
In these communities ruffianism tempered by lynch law is
generally in the ascendant, life and property are insecure,
and a low tone of morality prevails. It is years before the
lagging forces of religion, law, education and social refinement overtake the crude rough elements of material progress,
and establish a civilization worthy of the name. In the
opening up of the Canadian North-West, law and order have
been maintained from the outset to a degree perhaps unprecedented in the history of colonization in modern times. The
missionary and the teacher have preceded the settler, to be
followed by the mounted policeman. Crime is as rare as
in any part of Canada, and lynch law unknown, because the
arm of justice is strong and far-reaching.   The wise provi- THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.        1081  ,
sion excluding intoxicating liquor from the North-West
Territories has conduced in no small measure to the good
order to which all travellers through the country unite in
bearing testimony. Even in Winnipeg where this restraint
is not in force, and where the feverish excitement of land
speculation, attracted an extensive floating population, many
of whom suddenly found themselves in the possession of
large amounts of money, there was never any parallel to the
scandalous license and flaunting depravity of the mushroom
cities of the American frontier, where the vices of civilization are intensified by the law-defying recklessness of border
life. To the wholesome influence of the Scottish element
which enters so largely into the directing forces of society in
the North West, this favourable condition of public morality
is greatly due. The Scottish respect for constituted authority, for the ordinances of religion, and the Christian code
of morality, which is instinctive with many of the old settlers
as well as the more recent arrivals, has fortunately proved
a strong barrier against the disintegrating and unsettling in-
O o o o C-*
fluences of a sudden influx of settlement.
When the Government resolved on the construction of the
Canadian Pacific Railway, it was foreseen that unless steps
were taken to conciliate the Indians, and afford them reasonable compensation for their land, serious troubles were likely
to arise. By the loss of their hunting-grounds, the Indians
would be deprived of the means of subsistence, and would
seek to appease at once their hunger and their resentment
by raids on the more exposed settlements. Retaliation by
the whites would be certain to follow, with the inevitable
result of protracted and bloody border wars.    In pursuance 1082     - THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
of the truly wise and statesmanlike policy of even-handed
justice, which has made the Indians of Old Canada the firm
friends and staunch defenders of British institutions, the
Government undertook to extinguish the Indian title to the
land by inducing the various tribes to voluntarily surrender
their claims in return for annuities and other benefits.    Between the years 1871 and 1877, a series of treaties were negotiated with the Ojibbeways, Crees, Saulteaux, Blackfeet
and other tribes, the effect of which was to secure from all
the Indians, inhabiting the regions to be thrown open for
settlement between Lake Superior and the Rocky Mountains, a formal cession of their rights in the soil, with the
exception of the reservations set apart for their occupation.
Nearly all of those engaged in the delicate and responsible
task of conducting the treaty negotiations with the aborigines were of Scottish birth or extraction.    Mr. Wemyss Mc-
Kenzie Simpson, as Indian Commissioner, acting in conjunction with Lieutenant-Governor Archibald, was instrumental
in concluding treaties. with the Indians of Manitoba, by
which the aboriginal title to that province, and a large adjacent, region was extinguished.    The subsequent treaties
with the Indians occupying the country further west, were
the work of Lieutenant-Governors Morris and Laird, assisted by a number of gentlemen whose knowledge of the country, and acquaintance with Indian peculiarities rendered
their services-of great value.    Prominent among these were
Hon. W. J. Christie, a retired factor of the Hudson Bay
Company, the late Hon. James McKay, himself partly of
Indian extraction, and Mr. Simon James Dawson. And here
a few biographical details may be given concerning one THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
1083
whose.name will always be closely associated with the suppression of the Riel insurrection in 1870, and the early influx of settlement.
Mr. Dawson is a Scot by birth, and connected through
both parents with historic Scottish families. By profession
he is a civil engineer. He came to Canada at an early age,
and in 1851, received an important appointment in connection with the construction of extensive works on the St.
Maurice River, for opening up the lumber regions dependent
on that stream as an outlet. He carried out the plan successfully, and in 1857 was commissioned by the government
to explore the country between Lake Superior and the Saskatchewan, to ascertain its fitness for settlement, and the
practicability of opening up communication with it. This
task being finished, he engaged in the lumber trade on the
St. Maurice for some years. In 1868 he was entrusted with
the work of constructing a road to Red River, available for
travel, until the completion of the railway should offer a
speedier and more convenient means of access. The engineering difficulties in the way were very great—the available resources small. The total distance is about 530 miles
—forty-five of which at the eastern, and a hundred and ten
at the western end can be travelled by waggons. The intervening-three hundred and eighty miles comprises a line
of water communication through a maze of lakes and riyers,
the navigable portions of the route being frequently separated
by rocky ridges or necks of land, across which canoes Or
other vessels have to be portaged. In 1870, when the expedition under Col. Garnet Wolseley was sent against the
insurgents, this route, then far from complete, afforded the 111! :
1084       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
only possible means of access to Red River through Canadian
territory, and but for the energy, determination and professional skill displayed by Mr. Dawson, in combating the physical obstacles to the march through the wilderness, the
bloodless victory achieved by the mere presence of the troops
must have been very considerably delayed. Mr. Dawson
represented Algoma in the Ontario legislature, from 1875
until 1878, and in the latter year was returned for the same
constituency to the Dominion House of Commons—being reelected in 1882. He is independent in politics, but has
usually voted with the ministry on important questions.
Hon. W. J. Christie was born at Fort Albany, East Hudson Bay, on January the 19th, 1824, his father being a Scotsman and a chief factor of the Hudson Bay Company at the
time of its amalgamation with the Nor'-West Company. He
was sent to Scotland for his education, returning to this
continent with Sir George Simpson in 1841, and entering
the Company's service at Lake Superior. In 1S43 he went
to the northern department, and was one year at Rocky
Mountain House engaged in trading . with the Blackfeet.
After holding responsible positions for many years at York
Factory, Fort Churchill and Fort Pelly, he was promoted to
the charge ot the Saskatchewan District, which he retained
fourteen years. In 1872, upon the reorganization of the
Company's business, he was appointed chief factor and supervisor of the country from Fort Garry to the Arctic circle'
After making a tour of inspection, he resigned the following
year, after thirty-one years' active service, and settled in
Brockville, Ontario—where he now resides. Mr. Christie's
tact and good management were specially conspicuous dur- THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
1085
ing the Riel insurrection, when he was in charge of the Saskatchewan District, and saved the Company the, enormous
losses which would have resulted had the insurgents as-
sumed a hostile attitude towards them. He was appointed
a commissioner for the purpose of effecting the treaty with
the Plain District Crees in 1874. and was nominated a member of the North-West Council. During his long career he
did much to promote the explorations and opening up of the
North-West, his services being acknowledged in very complimentary terms in Capt. Palliser's report of the expedition
of 1858-9, and in other official documents.
For several years the Dawson route continued to afford
settlers the readiest means of access to the North-West. It
was not until 1879 that the Pembina Branch provided railway comnrunication by way of the United States. Nevertheless, great progress was made in the settlement of the
country by the steady influx of settlers attracted by the rich
prairie lands or anxious to participate in the prosperity
evinced by the rapid growth of Winnipeg. In 1870 that
city was a village of some 215 inhabitants. It had about
500 in 1871 and-progressed continuously during the decade
until in 1881 it had attained a population of 7985. Then
came the " boom" of 1881-2, when under the influence of
increased facility of communication and the rush of emigration, business and population went up with a sudden bound.
The land speculation craze attracted capital from all quarters
and sent lots on the leading thoroughfares up to Chicago
prices. The inflation has since subsided and business has
got down to a healthier and less speculative basis. The
present population is estimated at about 30,000. 1086
THE SCOT IN BRITISH N'ORTH AMERICA.
Emigration into Manitoba and the North-West which up
to 1875 had only numbered a few thousand received a decided impetus during that year when upwards of six thousand were added to the population from this source. There
was a large influx of settlers the year following and the area
of colonization extended beyond the Pembina Mountains,
the land adjacent to the international boundary line being
largely taken up. The year 1877 witnessed the founding of
Rapid City on the Little Saskatchewan and the following
year population began to pour into the surrounding country.
In order to supply the settlements on the River Assiniboine
the attempt was made to ascend the river by steamboat as
far as Fort Ellice. This had previously been considered
impracticable on account of the rapids; but in May, 1879,
the trip was made successfully by Captain Web*ber of the
steamboat Manitoba. Communication to this point being
secured, a considerable immigration to the region Eastward
from Fort Ellice took place, and the town of Birtle was
founded as a distributing centre for this section. The Souris
Plain also attracted many in search of farming lands. The
total number of immigrants for that year reached eleven
thousand. In 1880 it numbered about fifteen thousand—
the region of Shell River considerably to the North of Fort
Ellice being opened up for settlement.
When the Syndicate bargain was consummated an impetus was at once given to North-West development. Immigration was stimulated, business increased immensely, the
prices of real estate rose, and every one accepting the
ratification of the contract as a guarantee that the future of
the  country  was assured essayed to discount its coming THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
1087'
prosperity. Cities and towns sprung up everywhere^—at
stations, or points which it was rumoured were likely to be
stations of the line—at places where it crossed rivers—at
the intersection of streams because of the facilities for water
communication in different directions—beside rapids because the obstruction offered the advantage of being at the
head of navigation—on rising ground because of the benefits
of an elevated site and a commanding prospect—and in the
middle of the broad prairie for the very obvious reason that
they would have plenty of room to grow. Cities here, there ^
and everywhere—
Thou canst not find one spot
Whereon no city stood.
says Shelley's " Queen Mab," and though there may be
doubts as to its strict accuracy as a general observation, few
who had any experience of the Manitoba boom will be disposed to question its truth as applied to that province
These embyro communities, it is true, were for the most
part destitute even of the rudimentary blacksmith shop and
tavern that form the traditional nucleus of the Chicagos of the
future. Nevertheless, their lots were held and not unfre-
quently sold at prices which, as compared with the cost of
the land a year or two before, offered a sufficiently favourable augury of their destiny to allure investors. The moral
of the "boom" of 1881-2 is as old as the story of human
credulity. Speculation ran high in connection, with Winnipeg
property, but in that case there was a tangible basis of actual
value—it was simply a question of the probable extent and
rapidity of the growth of a city with an assured future. In
the case of the "paper cities," however, the very names of 1088       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
which have now been forgotten by all except the luckless
investors, no man of ordinary foresight and intelligence
•ought to have been deluded into supposing that such investments possessed any real value beyond the trifle which the
land would fetch for farm purposes. As a matter of fact not
many even of those who lost money were so deceived. The
•question of permanent value was the last thing they considered. They valued their purchases simply as counters in a
gambling transaction and their only delusion was in enter-
taining the idea that the public would keep up the game
long enough to enable them to win.
Along the line of the Railway, however, a number of cities
and towns grew up, the prosperity of which rested upon a
more enduring basis. The Syndicate altered the course of
the line to a more Southerly route than that at first projected— tapping a rich agricultural region. Portage la
Prairie was reached in the spring of 1881, and by the close
■of that year the population had risen from about 800 to
2,700. In September of the same year the railway reached
Brandon, 145 miles West of Winnipeg, and its developement
received a sudden impulse. The city of Emerson is another
place which has made substantial progress owing to its
natural advantages of location and the enterprise of its lead
ing men. It had no existence before 1874 and the following
year the population numbered abount a hundred. It obtained railway communication with St. Paul in 1879, settlers at once began to flow in, and in 1881 the population
had increased to about 2,500.
According to the census returns the population of Manitoba has increased from 18,995 in 1871 to 65,954 in 1881 THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
1089
Of the latter number 16,506 are of Scottish origin and 2,868
were born in Scotland. The Scottish element is considerably larger than any other as the English by descent number
11,503, the Irish 10,173, the French 9,949, the German 8,652,
and the Indians 6,767. Of the 7,985 credited to Winnipeg,
2,470 are of Scottish origin, 2,318 English, and 1,864 Irish.
The population of the North-West Territories is given by
the census of 1881 at a total of 56,446, of which 49,472 are
Indians.    Of the 6,974 whites, 1,217 are of Scottish blood.
What Manitoba owes to the influence of the Scot, cannot be
over-estimated. Her institutions are leavened by Scottish
feelings ; her public sentiment moulded by Scottish habits
of thought; her business carried on largely by Scottish capital and enterprise; her leading merchants, her foremost politicians, the larger proportion of her principal professional
men, bankers, professors, clergy—the men of thought as
well as those of action—the guiding, governing brain forces
of the nucleus from whence radiate the lines of settlement
and traffic, are of that sturdy, indomitable North British
stock, which, wherever the English language is spoken, is to
be found in the van of the march of civilization—pioneer and
path-finder for those that shall follow. Prof. Bryce, in his
admirable work on " Manitoba, Its Infancy, Growth and
Present Condition," bears the following testimony to the
powerful Scottish sentiment which prevails in the Province,
and the tenacity with which the Manitoba Scots adhere to
the time-honoured observances of their forefathers, and cherish their national spirit.
" While true to their Canadian nationality, the strong
attachment for   British institutions among the people of 1090
THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
.Canada's youngest province is seen in the vigorous maintenance of their national societies. The most active of these
is the St. Andrew's Society. This is maintained to assist
their, indigent fellow-countrymen, and cultivate Scottish
literature and customs, not only by Scotchmen, but as the
constitution provides by the Sons of Scotchmen, as well.
Burns' Anniversary, the Caledonian Games, and St. Andrew's
Day Festival, are maintained with theperfervidum ingenium
characteristic of the nation."*
The Scottish ascendency in politics of which those of other
nationalities are sometimes disposed to complain—forgetful
that where political honours are conferred by the people,
such a complaint is an arraignment of the intelligence and
discrimination of the electors—is equally noticeable in Manitoba as in the older provinces. Men of Scottish race mingled
in not a few cases with a strain of aboriginal blood, the dis-
cendants of Hudson Bay officers and the Selkirk settlers
together, with later arrivals of the same stock from Canada
and the old land, form a very large proportion of the representatives of this mixed community. Since the admission of
the Province to the Union, about one-half of the Manitoba
members have been Scots by birth or descent. Reference
has already been made to Hon. John Sutherland, Hon. Donald
A. Smith, and Mr. Robert Cunningham—the latter a newcomer, and the two former old settlers. The leading features
in the careers of some other Scotchmen, who have represented the Prairie Province in the Dominion Parliament ruav
here be briefly given.
' Manitoba, Its Infancy, Growth and Present Condition," p. 358. THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.        1091
Hon. Andrew Graham Ballenden Bannatyne was born iu.
1829, in South Ronaldshay, Orkney Isles; his father being
James* Bannatyne, an officer of the Fishery Department. He
came to Canada at the age of twenty, and engaged with the
Hudson Bay Company, in the service of which he remained
until 1851. Mr. Bannatyne held office in the provisional
government of Louis Riel, and has also been Post-office Inspector for the Province, a member of the Council of Assini-
boia, and at a later period a member of the Executive Council for the North-West Territories. He was elected to
the House of Commons for Provencher by acclamation, on
the 31st March, 1875, Riel, who was previously elected,
having been declared an outlaw, and a hew writ issued. Mr.
Bannatyne retired from parliamentary life in 1878.
Among the newer men in Manitoba public affairs, is Mr.
Arthur Wellington Ross, M.P., for Lisgar. He is a Scottish-
Canadian, being a son of Donald Ross, of East Williams,
Middlesex County. His grandfather, Arthur Ross, of the
78th Highlanders, was one of the first settlers in the Town-
ship of Adelaide. A. W. Ross, was born on the 25 th March,
1846, in the Township of East Williams, and completed his
education at Toronto University. He was Public School
Inspector for the County of Glengarry, for about three years,
ending November, 1874, and during this period married Miss
Jessie Flora Cattanach, of Laggan, in that county. On taking up his residence in Winnipeg, he applied himself to legal
study, and was admitted as a barrister-atdaw of the Province. During the era of real estate speculation, he invested
largely in land, and as his operations were conducted with
foresight and prudence, they proved extremely profitable,
11 1092       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA. .
and Mr. Ross soon ranked as one of the wealthiest men in
Winnipeg. He represented Springfield in the Manitoba
Legislature, from 1878 until 1882, when he resigned in order
to become a candidate for the House of Commons. In politics, Mr. Ross is a Liberal.
Two of Mr. Ross's co-representatives in the Commons from
Manitoba are also Scottish-Canadians, and like him new,
members. Mr. Robert Watson, member for Marquette, was
born in Elora, Ontario, in 1853, his father being an Edinburgh man. He is a millwright by trade. Mr. Watson
went to Manitoba in 1876, and engaged extensively in grain
dealing and contracting, his ventures proving highly successful. His political views are Liberal. Mr. Hugh McKay
•Sutherland, was born in New London, P.E.I., on the 22nd of
February, 1843, his family having originally come from
Sutherlandshire. His parents removed to Oxford County,
Ontario, when he was quite young. He was engaged as
Superintendent of Public Works in the North-West, from
1874 until 1878. In the latter year he settled in Winnipeg,
and went into the lumber trade. He is a member of the
Liberal party.
The prevalence of the Scottish element has been equally
marked in Provincial as in Dominion politics. On the organization of the Province of Manitoba, the class of old residents comprising the Hudson Bay. Company officials—■
active or retired—and their descendants, together with the
Scots of Kildonan, furnished most of the available legislative
material. The Scottish predominance in the management
of the affairs of the Hudson Bay Company, has already
been fully dwelt upon.    It was some years before the newer THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.       1093
arrivals secured the ascendency in Manitoba politics, and
largely displaced the Hudson Bay connection, and the native North-Westerners as popular representatives. It is significant that this change, so far as it has been accomplished,
still leaves men of Scottish blood in the foremost political
positions, as' shown by the salient circumstance that three
out of the five Manitoba representatives in the Dominion
Parliament are Scottish Canadians of recent immigration.
Though the effect of the influx of population has been to
change the complexion of the Manitoba legislature, it is
noteworthy that the premier of the province is one of the
old regime. Hon. John Norquay, is of mixed Scottish and
Indian blood, the latter element being strongly manifested
in his aboriginal cast of features, while the qualities of his
paternal ancestry have been conspicuously manifested in his
career. On his father's side he is of Orcadian descent, his
grandfather having come to the North-West from the Island
of South Ronaldsay. His father also named John Norquay,,
was a native of Red River. The Hon. John Norquay was
born on the 8th of May, 1841, and received as good an education as the settlement afforded, taking a scholarship at St.
John's academy in 1854. He was returned as a member of
the first Manitoba Parliament, for the constituency of High
Bluff, and in December, 1871, was appointed to a cabinet
position with the portfolio of Minister of Public Works and
Agriculture.t He resigned along with his colleagues in July,
1874, but did not remain long out of office. He joined the
administration of Hon. R. A. Davis the following year, and
was assigned to the post of Minister of Public Works in
May, 1876.   Upon the defeat of the Davis ministry in Octo- 1094 '     THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
ber, 1878, he was called upon to form a new administration
in conjunction with Hon. Joseph Royal. Mr. Norquay
became Premier and Provincial Treasurer. A disagreement
shortly afterwards occurred between the Premier and his
colleagues, Messrs. Royal and Delorme, which led to the resignation of the two latter. Several changes were subsequently made in the personnel of the ministry. TheNorquay
administration was sustained in the general election of October, 1879—a re-distribution of constituencies having previously been made. It was considerably strengthened by the
accession of Senator Girard and Hon. Maxime Goulet, representing the French element, and has since remained in power.
Mr.Norquay, since 1874, has represented the constituency of
St. Andrew's. The most important measures of his administration have been the introduction of municipal organizations, the adoption of an extensive system of drainage, by
which large districts of swampy and low-lying lands have
been reclaimed, and the extension of the provincial boundaries, which has given Manitoba the area of a first-class
province. Mr. Norquay's course in connection with the latter
question, in its more recent phases, has excited a good deal
of feeling against him in Ontario. In commenting upon his
course, however, it must in fairness be remembered that as
Premier of Manitoba, he has acted strictly in the interests
of the province, whose welfare he is pledged to advance, and
to whose people alone he is responsible. It does not fall
within the scope of the present work to enter into the elaborate technical details of the vexed Boundary Award question, and the respective rights of the authorities which have
come into collision on this debateable ground.  But, whatever, THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.        1095
be the upshot, the representatives of Manitoba cannot reasonably be blamed for taking advantage of party dissensions at
Ottawa and Toronto, to increase the territory of their province. The current political morality of the most enlight-
ened nations has never risen to the lofty plane of voluntarily renouncing an advantage, because its acceptance involved an injustice to other communities. The Golden Rule
finds no place among the maxims of diplomacy and, judged
by the ordinary standards of political ethics, Mr. Norquay has acted strictly within the line of his duty to his
province in pushing her claims. If the final settlement of
the question results to the detriment of the strong, but
divided Province of Ontario, the Manitoba Premier at any
rate will stand guiltless of treachery to a cause to which he
owes no allegiance and professed no devotion.
The political lines have not been very strictly defined in
Manitoba until the last few years. The tendency at first
was to subordinate party divisions to the interests of the
province, and for some time the designations of Conservative
and Reformer sat loosely upon many of the public men of
the province. Of late, however, the identification of the
interests of the Norquay administration with those of the
Conservative ministry at Ottawa, and the strong party feeling of many of the new settlers from the older provinces,
have drawn the lines of party more tightly. The Norquay
administration is now strictly Conservative, and the political lines of cleavage in local matters coincide with the divisions of Dominion politics. Some of the more prominent of
those of Scottish origin, who have taken part in provincial
affairs, may now be sketched in outline. ill
it'
1
1096
THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
Hon. James McKay was the eldest son of Mr. James McKay, of Sutherlandshire, who was for many years in the
service of the Hudson Bay Company. He was born at
Edmonton House, Saskatchewan, and received his. education
at the Red Bivef settlement. He was for some time in the
employ of the Hudson Bay Company and afterwards went
into business on his own aceount as a contractor. He superintended the construction of a portion of the Dawson route.
On the creation of the Province of Manitoba he was called
to the Legislative Council, occupying the Speaker's chair for
several years. He was appointed a member of the first provincial administration, organized in January, 1871, with the
office of president of the Executive Council—which office he
retained until the resignation of the ministry in December,
1874. Shortly afterwards he became Minister of Agriculture in the Government formed by Hon. R. A. Davis, from
which post he retired in 1878 owing to the lingering illness
from which he died on the 3rd of December, 1879. Owing
to his known integrity and straightforwardness of character
and his thorough acquaintance with the aboriginal nature
he possessed great influence over the Indians and half-breeds
which enabled him to render valuable services in connection
with the various treaties by which the Indian title to the
country was extinguished. He was married in June, 1859
to Margaret, the third daughter of Chief Factor Rowan of
the Hudson Bay Company.
Another prominent member of the Manitoba Legislature
who has passed away was Hon. Donald Gunn, a Scot by birth
and descended from the clan whose name he bore. Born in
the parish of Falkirk, Caithness-shire, in September, 1797, he THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
1091
came to the North-West in 1813 to engage in the service of
the Hudson Bay Company in which he remained 'ten years,
being stationed at York Factory, Severn and Oxford House.
In July, .1819, he married Margaret the daughter of Mr^
James Swain, of York Factory. On resigning his position in
1823,he settled at Red River. For upwards of twenty years he
was one of the Judges of the Court of Petty Sessions, a portion
of the time being president of the court. He was an unsuccessful candidate for the Manitoba Legislature in the constituency of St. Andrew's at the general election of 1870 and
was nominated to the Legislative Council when that body
was instituted. He held his seat until the abolition of the
Council in 1876. Mr. Gunn was an enthusiastic naturalist,
and by years of close observation and study had rendered
himself thoroughly versed in the natural history of the
Nortl^West. He contributed numerous papers on this subject to the " Miscellaneous Collections of the Smithsonian Institution," and other publications. He was a corresponding
member of the latter body and of the Institute of Rupert's
Land, and a member of the Board of Management of Manitoba College. He died at St. Andrew's on the 30th of November, 1878.  *
Hon. Colin Inkster, who succeeded Hon. James McKay as
Speaker of the Legislative Council and President of the Executive Council, is another representative of the class which
supplied so large a proportion of the public men of Manitoba
during the early days of the province. His father, John
Inkster, was a native of the Orkney Isles and a Hudson Bay
official, who in 1852 was'appointed a Councillor of Assiniboia.
Colin Inkster was born in the Red River settlement fn 1843. 1
•
•:
1098
THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
He contested Lisgar unsuccessfully in the Conservative interest in 1871, and on the organization of the short-lived
Legislative Council, was appointed one of its members. He
resigned office in 1876 to accept a shrievalty.
Alexander Murray, M.P.P., for Assiniboia, is the only son
of the late Mr. James Murray, one of the original Selkirk
settlers, and was born in Kildonan on April 18th, 1839. He
received his education at St. John's College, where, in 1857,
he took a scholarship. Mr. Murray who is a Conservative in
politics and a strong supporter of the Pacific Railway policy
of the present administration, was first returned to the legislature for St. Charles in 1874, and has been a member ever
since, excepting during a short interval in 1878, when he
occupied the position of Police Magistrate for the County of
East Marquette.
Hon. Gilbert McMicken, who occupied the position of
Speaker of the Legislative Assembly from 1880 until the
general election of 1883, was born in Wigtonshire, Scotland,
in 1813. He came to Canada in his nineteenth year, and
has occupied numerous responsible public positions in Ontario. He was for many years a resident in the Niagara
District where he held several municipal offices, and represented Welland County in the Legislative Assembly of Canada from 1857 to 1861. Mr. McMicken's scientific attainments enabled him to effect two important improvements in
telegraphy, which were patented in 1847. He was also the
first to span the Niagara River with a wire. He was appointed Stipendiary Magistrate for Canada West during the
American Civil War, receiving the special thanks of Lord
Monck for the efficient discharge of this responsible duty. THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
1099
During the Fenian excitement he was Commissioner of Police for the Dominion, and his arrangements for discovering
the plans of the Fenians contributed greatly to the repulse
of the raiders in 1870. He performed a similar service in
connection with the contemplated Fenian attack on Fort
Garry, during Lieut.-Governor Archibald's term. He had
charge of the Dominion Lands office in Manitoba from the
time it was opened, and held the position of Assistant Receiver-General and other official posts until superannuated
in 1877. Mr. McMicken was returned for Cartier as a Conservative in 1880, and held his seat until the last general
election.
Hon. John H. McTavish, one of the members of the first
Manitoba Parliament, is Scottish Canadian, having been born
at Grafton, Ontario, in 1837. He came to Red River in
the service of the Hudson Bay Company, at the age of
nineteen. During Riel's insurrection, he had charge of the
business of the Company at the settlement. He was returned for St. Anne by acclamation at the first general election,
and retained his seat until April 3rd, 1874, when he was appointed a member of the Executive Council for the North-
West Territories. In politics, he takes the Conservative
side.
Among other ex-members of the Provincial Legislature of
Scottish origin, may be mentioned, Mr. Kenneth McKenzie,
a native of Inverness-shire, who represented Portage La
Prairie between 1874 and 1880; John Gunn, son of the
Hon. Donald Gunn, who sat for North St. Andrews from
1874 to 1878; David Spence, who represented Poplar Point, 1
1100       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
in the first Legislature; William Robert Dick, a Scot-
Canadian, born in Ernesttown, Ont., elected for Springfield,
in 1874; Angus McKay, a brother of Hon. James McKay,
and member for Lake Manitoba for the years '70-78 ; John
Taylor, of Orcadian descent, representative of Headingly,
1874-78; and John Aldham Kyte Drummond, son of the late
Lieut.-Col. Drummond, of Kingston, who sat for High Bluff
for 1878-80.
Hon. Alexander Macbeth Sutherland, the present Attorney-
General of the Province, is the third son of Senator Sutherland. His mother Jeannette Macbeth, was a daughter of
the late John Macbeth, one of the early Selkirk settlers. He
was born at Point Douglass in 1849, and completed his education at Toronto University, where he graduated in 1876.
He was returned for Kildonan in 1878, and has represented
that constituency in the legislature ever since. Mr. Sutherland entered the Norquay cabinet as Attorney-General, in
September, 1882.
Among the accessions to the legislature at the last election, are Charles Hay, Member for Norfolk, born in the Orkney Islands, in 1843, who settled in Manitoba in 1862, a
member of the mercantile firm of Campbell, Hay & Boddy,
of Portage LaPrairie, an Independent, and Finlay McNaugh-
ton Young, who represents Turtle Mountain, born in Cha-
teauguay County, Quebec, of 'Scottish parentage, who is opposed to the Norquay administration.
I CHAPTER VII.
BRITISH    COLUMBIA.
fHE designation of " New Caledonia," formerly applied
to the British Columbia mainland, and the frequent
recurrence of distinctively Scottish names in the local nomenclature, might seem to imply that the Pacific Province
would prove especially rich in material for the purpose of
the present work. Such, however, is not the case. There
is no other Province of the Dominion where the Scottish
element of the population is, both actually and relatively, so
small as in British Columbia, where, out of a total population of 49,459, according to the last census returns, but
3,892, all told, were of Scottish origin. A due regard for
perspective, therefore, requires the curtailment of this chapter to within comparatively narrow limits. Moreover, many
of the achievements of the Scot in British Columbia, both as
regards early explorations and the Pacific Railway enterprise, have already been largely treated of in previpus
chapters.
British Columbia is a region of wide extent and varied
characteristics. It presents many remarkable contrasts in
climate and productions in regions not far apart, owing to
the modifying influence of the ocean and the mountain
ranges with which it is seamed. Between the Cascade range 1102       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
and the sea the climate is temperate and moist; the summers beautiful, the winters mild.    Yancouver Island is subject to similar conditions.    Eastward of the Cascade mountains the extremes of climate are more pronounced.    The
more southern oortion is heavily timbered, and vegetation
grows luxuriantly.    The yield of grain crops and other agricultural produce is very  large,  though irrigation is often
required.    Further to the northward the country becomes
drier, colder, and less thickly wooded. On the upper portion
of the Fraser River the winter is very changeable, and the
cold often very severe,    The agricultural region proper terminates in the neighbourhood of Alexandria, the country
showing large tracts of fine  pasturage  interspersed with
some arable land.    From this point north-eastward to the
mountains is the mining region, the principal source of the
wealth of British Columbia.    In the south-eastern corner of
the Province another marked change occurs.    The rich, fer-
tile soil of the same latitude further west, is replaced by an
arid, sterile tract, sometimes almost tropical in its characteristics and partaking largely of the  nature  of the  grea't
American desert which stretches away to  the southward.
The elevated plateau between the Cascade Range and the
Rocky Mountains averages 3,000 to 4,000 feet above the level
of  the  sea.    Near the Rocky Mountains it is brpken by
the spurs and offshoots of this great continental range, which,
with their alternations of ridge and chasm,  snow-capped
summit and deep-cut river-bed, present a succession of the
wildest and most majestic scenes. There are numerous lakes,
occupying deep depressions in the uneven surface; the rivers
%' THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
1103
flow through precipitous gorges, and through the rough,
broken mountainous districts, in many directions, sweep
broad, undulating stretches of low, sheltered land. The
Montenegrin peasantry have a curious legend respecting the origin of the mountains which have given a
name to their country. They believe that when the Creator
was distributing mountains over the surface of the newly-
formed earth, the bag in which they were contained burst
just over Montenegro, giving them rather more than their
share. To a mind in the anthropomorphic stage it would not
require any very great stretch of imagination to lead to the belief that some similar accident must have occurred in British
Columbia, so lavish has nature been in the' bestowal of her
wilder features. Inequality of physical outline appears to
be the distinguishing characteristic of the country. The seaboard both of Yancouver Island and the mainland is as
broken and indented by harbours and inlets as the interior
is rugged and uneven.
The history of British Columbia as a land inhabited by
civilized men is a brief and, excepting for the transformation scenes of the gold excitement, an uneventful one. De-
spite its natural advantages, the progress of the colony has
been retarded by its isolated position. Dr. Oliver Wendell
Holmes tells a good story about a party of Bostoniansmeetinga
settler in the backwoods of Maine, who, on learning that his
visitors hailed from " the Hub," remarked in a tone of wonderment, " I don't see how you fellers down to Boston kin
afford to five so fur off." The humour of the story of course
lies in the inversion of the point.    Literally speaking, there 1104       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
are not many who can "afford to live so far off" as British
Columbia. Hence her sparse and scattered population. It
is only by the establishment of railroad communication with
the eastern portion of the Dominion that the immense resources which await exploration will be rendered available,
and the mere handful of population increased by influx from
Europe and Eastern Canada.
The question of which of the early navigators who explored the Pacific coast of North America is entitled to the
credit of having first entered the waters of British Columbia
is a much disputed one. Sir Francis Drake, in an expedition which sailed from Plymouth in 1577, reached the 48th
parallel of latitude in prosecuting his search for a north-east
passage from the Pacific to the Atlantic, and laid claim to
the country between that point and the 43rd parallel, naming it " New Albion." In 1625 a narrative was published in
England by Michael Lock, concerning the adventures of
Juan de Fuca, whose true name was Apostolos Yalerianos,
a Greek pilot, said to have been sent by the Viceroy of
Mexico, in 1592, with three vessels on a voyage of exploration northward along the coast. He claimed to have sailed
through the channel separating Vancouver Island from the
mainland of British Columbia. The inaccuracies in the narrative of his alleged discoveries, exposed by Captain Cook
and other explorers, led to its being subsequently discredited, and doubts even thrown on the existence of the old Greek
sailor. Nevertheless, whether he or another is rightfully
entitled to the honour of being
' —the first that ever burst
Into that silent sea/' THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.       1105
the name of Juan de Fuca Strait preserves the memory of
that ancient mariner. Other expeditions were subsequently
fitted out by the English and Spaniards, in search of the
North-west passage between the two oceans. It is often the
case that the search after the unattainable, the impossible,
and the non-existent, results in discoveries of tangible
and permanent value to mankind. As alchemy was the parent of chemistry, and astrology gave birth to astronomy, so
the- search for the North-west and North-east passages carried on for years by the maritime nations at great sacrifices*
though futile as to the immediate objects in view, did much
to enlarge the sphere of geographical knowledge. The discoveries of Captain Cook and others disclosed the general
trend of the coast line. Captain Kendrick, an American, is
another for whom the credit of being the first to sail through
the gulf between Vancouver Island and the mainland, has
been claimed. He is said to have made this voyage in 1788.
It was during this year that Captain Meares, who was associated with Captain Douglas in a voyage of discovery under the auspices of an association of merchants in Bengal,
reached the Straits of Fuca, which had not been found by
Cook, ascended the channel about thirty leagues in a boat,
and formally took possession of the country in the na'me of
the Crown. He' was not, however, able to land, as the natives made an obstinate resistance and compelled the party
to return to their vessel. Difficulties shortly af tewards arose
between the English and the Spaniards as to their respective
rights in the Pacific coast. To adjust this dispute Captain
Vancouver, formerly a lieutenant serving under Captain 1106       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
Cook, was commissioned in 1790 to negotiate with a Spanish commission at Nootka Sound, and in addition was
charged with the duty of making an examination of the
coast, in order to throw further light upon the problem of a
passage between the two oceans. After some exploration in
other directions Vancouver entered the straits of Juan de
Fuca in 1792, and after encountering many obstacles succeeded in piloting his ships through the archipelago of the
Gulf of Georgia and reaching the Pacific by way of Johnstone's Strait—thus clearly establishing the mythical character of the North-east passage supposed to exist in that direction. During a portion of this voyage the expedition had
remained in company with a Spanish exploring party whom
they encountered in the straits, and out of compliment to
the Spanish commander the name originally bestowed upon
the island—the existence of which was for the first time
definitely established—was the " Island of Quadra and Vancouver." The first portion of this cumbrous designation was
soon abandoned and the name fixed as Vancouver Island, in
honour of the real discoverer.
While Vancouver Island and the Pacific coast was little
by little becoming known by the discoveries of maritime ex-
plorers approaching it from the West, the interior of British
Columbia was being penetrated from the East by the same
enterprising and dauntless class of pioneers, who were the
avant couriers of civilization in theNorth-West Territories.
The part taken by the adventurous Scots, Sir Alexander Mackenzie, Fraser and Thompson—whose names borne by three
majestic rivers will perpetuate for all time the memory of THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.       1107
their daring and endurance—has already been set forth in the
pages devoted to the early history of the Fur Trading Companies. These discoveries were turned to practical account
in 1806, when the first fur-trading post, founded in British
Columbia, was. erected a short distance from the great Fraser
River, by Simon Fraser. The Hudson Bay Company shortly
afterwards established a post at Stuart's Lake, and the country was soon dotted with the establishments of the rival
North-West and Hudson Bay companies. It was not until
this time that the designation of " New Caledonia," which
had previously been indefinitely used in connection with the
coast line, was generally applied to the entire region of the
British Columbia mainland.
The rival fur trading companies were united in 1821,
under the title of the Hudson Bay Company, and in the
same year obtained a charter guaranteeing them the exclusive trade of the region—a monopoly of which they remained in possession until the discovery of gold rendered it
necessary to establish a colonial government, and throw the
country open for settlement. It was not until 1843 that the
Hudson Bay Company established themselves on Vancouver
Island. At that time Mr. (after Sir) James Douglas was
chief agent of the company for all their territory, west of the
Rocky Mountains. His headquarters were for some time in
Fort Vancouver, Oregon Territory—under his direction a
party of^ forty men, in charge of a Scottish official of the
company, named Finlayson, landed at Victoria, then called
by the natives Tsomus, from the name of the tribe. They
met with no opposition from the Indians, from whom Mr.
Douglas purchased the site for the contemplated fort.   They
12 1108       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
at once set about the erection of the buildings, which were
completed during the following year. In 1846, when by the
Treaty of Oregon, Fort Vancouver was embraced in the territory of the United States—the Pacific headquarters of the
company were transferred to Victoria. The fort, and the
little settlement which, gradually opening up around it, continued to be for many years the only spot on the Island reclaimed from the wilderness.
Before proceeding further with the narrative of the settlement of British Columbia it will be advisable to present a
few biographical details in relation to the strong and salient
character just introduced upon the scene, whose after career
exercised so powerful an influence upon the fortunes of the
colony. James Douglas was born at Demerara, in the South
American colony of British Guiana, on the 14th of August,
1803. His father, who had emigrated from Scotland to
British Guiana a short time previously, was in poor circumstances. Young Douglas was left an orphan at an early age,
and in 1815, when but twelve years of age, accompanied an
elder brother to push his fortune as so many others of his
nationality have done in the great North-West. The rivalry
between the Hudson Bay and North-West companies was
at that time extremely keen. James Douglas entered the
service of the latter, bringing to his avocation remarkable
physical strength and powers of endurance, an iron constitution, and a bold, resolute spirit. As he grew to .manhood
these qualities were developed and strengthened by the
character of the arduous service in which he was engaged,
and he soon began to display those rare intellectual qualities
of prudence, -determination, and executive capacity which THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA,       1109
early marked him a born-leader of men. His business faculties and the tact he exhibited in his intercourse with the
Indians secured his rapid advancement to posts of increased
responsibility. After the ' amalgamation of the companies
he became chief factor, in which capacity he visited the
remotest outposts of the company. His wanderings were
attended with many formidable perils. Once he was made
.captive by a tribe of British Columbia Indians and detained
for many weeks. He contrived at length to effect his escape,
and after enduring severe hardships succeeded in reaching
one of the forts of the company in an exhausted condition.
His re-appearance was hailed with mingled delight and
astonishment for he had long been given up as dead. In
1833 he was appointed to the Chief Agency for the region
west of the Rocky Mountains, and as we have seen, planted
the first settlement on the shores of Vancouver Island ten
years later. In 1851 he became Governor of the infant
colony established under the auspices of the Hudson Bay
Company, his commission being renewed for a further period
of six years in 1857. When Vancouver Island was constituted a Crown Colony in 1859, with Victoria as its capital'
Mr. Douglas was appointed Governor and received the dignity
of a C. B. British Columbia having been organized as a
colony in 1858, the Governorship was also vested in Mr.
Douglas. How admirably he exercised his arduous and responsible functions, in this double capacity, in the face of
circumstances requiring the most delicate tact, the firmest
resolution, and the clearest judgment the narrative of the
colony's progress will show. In 1863 he received the
honour of Knighthood as  a recognition  by the Imperial ■:
1110       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
Government of his inestimable services. He withdrew from
public life in 1864, when his commission as Governor
expired, and after making the tour of Europe returned to
spend the evening of his days in the land whose best interests he had spent his life in advancing. He died at Victoria on the 2nd of August, 1877, in his seventy-fourth year.
Sir James married in 1827 Miss Connolly, a daughter of the
Chief Factor of the Hudson Bay Company, at Red River,
by whom he had a numerous family. Mr. James W. Douglas, his eldest and only surviving son, was for some years
a representative of Victoria in the Provincial Legislature.
Let us resume the thread of the narrative of the rise of the
colony of Vancouver Island, which in 1848 comprised merely
the Hudson Bay Company's fort on the site of the present
city of Victoria. The company applied to the British government and obtained a charter granting them the absolute
control of the island for a term of ten years from January,
1849. This privilege was granted on the condition that
they should establish a colony, and use exertions to attract
population. Mr. Richard Blanchard was sent out from England as the first governor, but after two years returned to
England, being succeeded by Mr. Douglas in November,
1851. His first official action was one eminently characteristic of the man, and in strict accordance with the just and
politic conduct towards the aborigines, which has been the
secret of the remarkable success of the Hudson Bay Company in maintaining the serviceable friendship of the Indian
tribes. He assembled all the natives in the neighbourhood
of Victoria and paid them in full for the lands appropriated
by the whites.    The wisdom, as well as the humanity of THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.       1111
this policy, is apparent. The Indians were then both powerful and warlike, and on frequent occasions it required all
the prudence and decision of character possessed in such
large measure by Governor Douglas to avert the horrors of
savage warfare. It was necessary while treating with the
Indians with fairness and honesty, to impress upon them the
lesson that attacks upon the lives and property of the settlers would be firmly punished In the winter of 1851, a
shepherd was murdered by Indians at Christmas Hill, the
perpetrators of the crime taking refuge at Cowichan. An
expedition was sent in pursuit, consisting partly of sailors
from Her Majesty's ship Thetis, and partly of volunteers
from the settlement. On the arrival of the avengers, one of
the murderers was given up. The other fled and was followed to Nanaimo, where he was finally captured, and both
were shortly afterwards executed. A similar expedition
organized not long afterwards for the capture of an Indian
who had shot and severely wounded a white man at Cowichan, nearly involved more tragical consequences. The
tribe at first refused to surrender the offender, who, emboldened by their support, levelled a musket at the governor.
The small force at the command of the latter prepared to fire
on the natives, and nothing aparently could avert a bloody
conflict. The murderer drew the trigger but without effect,
and was at once seized by the tribe, delivered to the expedition, and hanged with all the due formalities of the law.
Lessons such as these speedily impressed the red men with a
wholesome respect forthe authority of the government, which
during the exciting times of the gold fever did much to restrain lawlessness and disorder.    The troubles between the Ill
1112       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA. .
different tribes of Indians, and their collisions with the colonists frequently threatened to result in a general outbreak,
but the'vigilance of the Governor always averted the crisis.
Attempts were made by the savages from time to time to possess themselves of the fort, but the resource and decision
of character displayed by Governor Douglas baffled the
schemes of the Indians, who were conciliated, while at the
same time overawed. The proverbial hand of iron in the
glove of velvet was never more forcibly exemplified than in
his dealing with the natives of Vancouver Island.
The work of colonization proceeded very slowly. In 1853
the white population of the Island only numbered about
450, two-thirds of these being at Victoria. The total quantity of land applied for up to the end of that year was 19,-
807 acres, of which only 1,696 acres was then in occupation
by individual settlers. These figures are taken from a description of Vancouver Island by Col. W. Colquhoun Grant,
whose nationality is sufficiently indicated by his name, and
who is described as the " first colonist." This paper was
read before the Royal Geographical Society of London on the
22nd of Juno, 1857—and its references to the various undertakings for the development of the Island seemed to indicate
that a large proportion of these early settlers were Scotchmen. Speaking of the mineral resources, Col. Grant states
that coal was first discovered at Nanaimo in 1850 by Mr.
Joseph McKay, who was directed to it by the Indians of the
neighbourhood. He notes that the efforts to find workable
coal at Beaver Harbour, the most Northern settlement,
proved unsuccessful, although "ashaft was sunk to the
depth of ninety feet by the Messrs. Muir, the miners who THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
1113
were first sent out from Scotland by the Hudson Bay Company." A Mr. Gilmour is also mentioned in connection
with mining operations. Nanaimo is described as " a flourishing little settlement with about 125 inhabitants, of whom
thirty-seven are working men, the remainder women and
children; there are about twenty-four children at a school
presided over by Mr. Baillie." In fact almost every name
mentioned has a distinctively Caledonian ring. The first
white man to accomplish the feat of crossing the Island diagonally from Nimpkish River to Nootka Sound was Mr.
Hamilton Moffatt, who undertook an exploratory tour in
1852, and reported favourably as to the character of that
region for settlement.
In the year 1856 representative institutions were granted
to the colonists, and the first Parliament, comprising seventeen members, assembled on the 12th of June. Governor
Douglas, in his inaugural speech, aptly comparing the growth
of the colony to that of its native pines- as being slow but
hardy. The organization of this embryo legislature is notable as the first instance in which representative institutions
had been established in a British colony at so early a stage
of its development.
By the discovery of gold in large quantities on the mainland, the circumstances of the colony were completely altered, owing to the sudden influx of miners and the large
class of adventurers of all kinds who always throng to a
newly-discovered El Dorado. As early as 1850 the precious
metal had been found in Queen Charlotte's Island, but only
in small quantities; and some time before the actual discoveries which caused the excitement it was understood that 1114       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
gold existed on Fraser River and throughout the Central
Cascade Range in this direction.    The first to bring to light
these hidden treasures, and communicate to the world the
richness of the gold-producing region, were Scotsmen.    In
1854 Capt. McClelland in charge of the survey for the military road from Fort Walla-Walla to Fort Steilacoom,  on
Puget Sound, through the Nachess Pass, unearthed gold in
considerable  quantities, his men sometimes obtaining two
dollars' worth a day with the pan.    The first official announcement of the existence of valuable gold deposits was
made in a letter addressed by  Governor Douglas  to  the
Colonial Secretary, on April 16th, 1856, in which he stated
that Mr. Angus McDonald, clerk in charge of Fort Colville,
one of the trading-posts on the Upper Columbia district, had
reported to him the finding of gold in quantities sufficient
to yield from £2 to £8 daily to those engaged in the digging.
The news spread rapidly.    Prospecting parties soon started
out in all directions, and met with encouraging success in
their explorations.   Then came  an immigration  of gold-
seekers from abroad, to which nearly every civilized nation,
as well as many uncivilized, contributed its quota, the greater
proportion, however, coming direct from the gold-fields of
California and the adjoining American territories.    Explorations in Vancouver Island were only moderately successful-
and the more extensive discoveries on the Fraser River made
this the objective point of the influx.    As Victoria was the
nearest considerable settlement, and the centre of supply, its
growth at once received a tremendous impetus.    The excitement reached its climax in the season of 1858, when fully
twenty thousand people landed at Victoria, on their way to THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.       Ili5-r
the diggings. Both bouse accommodation and the supplies1
of provisions and other necessaries were quickly exhausted,
and a period of inflation set in. Prices rose to almost incredible figures. Flour was held at thirty dollars per barrel S
lumber brought one hundred dollars per thousand feet. The
lack of buildings was supplied temporarily by the erection
of tents, which rose in all directions around the city. Building operations went forward with great rapidity, and over
two hundred houses were erected in the course of a month.
Speculation in real estate rose to a high pitch. Extravagant
prices were asked and paid for town lots, and rents were
enormous. The value of property went up fifty-fold in a
few weeks. The speculative craze at Victoria rivalled, for a
time, the gold excitement on the banks of the Fraser. The
fate of those who went forward to the gold fields was the
usual one of treasure-seekers. The difficulties in the way of
transportation were very great. The country tributary to
the Fraser resembles other mountainous countries in the
same latitude, where the streams begin to swell in June and
reach their lowest ebb in the winter. The few who reached
the scene early in the spring succeeded in obtaining large
amounts of gold from the banks not yet covered by the
periodic rise of the waters. The bulk of the miners, who^
did not arrive until later in the season, found the richest mining lands submerged. Many returned, crestfallen
and disappointed, to Victoria, and the story of their reverses
broke the spell under which Victoria had risen like a creation of enchantment. Miners and speculators alike returned
to California by thousands ; the days of inflation were over 1116       THE SCOT IN BRITISH N0RTB AMERICA.
if
and a period of commercial depression succeeded. The population of the city fell as low as 1,500.
Meanwhile the few hundred miners who persevered in
spite of all obstacles and pressed on undeterred by the ill-,
success of the thousands who had turned back discouraged,
were subjected to the greatest hardships and perils in making their way through a region hitherto untravelled by
white men, and destitute of roads and habitations. Mr.
Macfie, in his book on British Columbia, thus describes the
■dangers and difficulties of the river trail to the gold fields of
the Fraser:
" Before the line for the Lillooet route was generally
known, parties of intrepid miners, anxious to be the first to
reap its benefits, tried to force their way through all the difficulties opposed to them. The miser}7 and fatigue endured
by them was indescribable. They crept through underwood
and thicket for many miles, sometimes on hands and knees,
with a bag of flour on the back of each; alternately under
and over fallen trees, scrambling up precipices, or sliding
down over masses of sharp projecting rock or wading
up to their waists through bogs and swamps. Every day
added to their exhaustion, and worn out with privation and
sufferings one knot of adventurers after another became
smaller and smaller, some lagging behind to rest or turning
back in despair."
The few who were able to surmount these obstacles frequently realized the hopes which had prompted them te the
undertaking. Over half a million of gold was shipped from
Victoria in the three months ending with October, 1858, a THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.       1117
sufficient indication of the richness of the mines. The following year the tide again set in, though not in such large
volume, and the gold mining industry began to be steadily
pursued. In 1861, according to the correspondent of the
London Times, 5,000 persons were engaged in mining, and
the yield amounted to $6,700,000. In 1862 the discovery
of the Cariboo mines gave a renewed impulse to the rush of
immigration, and the scenes of 1857 were repeated. Speculation again ran riot in Victoria, and the wave of eager gold
hunters again surged eagerly onward through a rugged and
almost impenetrable wilderness. Cariboo was four hundred
miles inland, the only road being an old Indian trail over
the rivers, among the mountains, and through dark, and
tangled forests. Again the result was bitter disappointment
to the great majority, who returned to civilization footsore,
ragged and often utterly broken down in constitution, while
a Tew reaped a rich reward for their toils.
In 1858 a government was organized on the British Columbia mainland, Mr. Douglas, being appointed Governor.
He found himself placed in a most embarrassing and difficult
situation. A large influx of the rough mining population of
California rendered it necessary to use every precaution to
prevent the lawless spirit which long made that State a byword for turbulence and disorder gaining the ascendency on
British soil. Roads and bridges were urgently required, and
the revenue raised from customs duties proved totally insufficient for the purpose. In 1862 the only method of transportation was by mule-trains. Freight to Cariboo was one
dollar per pound. The commonest necessaries of life were
hardly obtainable at any price.   The Governor, in order to 1118       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
provide the means of carrying on the work of administration, imposed taxes which at the time created a great deal
of discontent, and for which he has since been severely censured, on the ground that such restrictions tended to check
immigration and to retard the development of the colony.
Two dollars, head-money, was charged on each immigrant,
each miner was required to pay a royalty of five dollars,
every trader was obliged to obtain a permit, for which a
charge was also made, and numerous like imposts were enforced. It is easy to condemn this policy and that pursued
in connection with sales of land as restrictive and illiberal.
But, practically, Governor Douglas had no other alternative.
A revenue must be had somehow, if the laws were to be enforced and the most ordinary requirements of civilized government introduced into a suddenly populated wilderness.
Time has amply vindicated Governor Douglas' beneficent
policy. By his foresight and determination the worst of the
evils usually attendant upon a rush of gold-seekers to a new
country were avoided. There was some violence and disorder
among the miners, as well as occasional collisions with the
Indians, but on the whole life and property were remarkably
secure, and the law was respected as it.never has been
under similar circumstances in the United States.
Despite the unwelcome taxes imposed the revenue was
unequal to the construction of roads to the mines at Cariboo.
This was accomplished at length by raising a loan of £100,000
in England and giving companies the right of levying tolls
for constructing some of the more important roads and
bridges of the system. The work was completed in 1863,
when it became possible to send freight forward by waggon THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.        1119
instead of on the backs of mules.    The effect was at once
apparent.    Supplies being obtainable  at reasonable rates,
population flowed in, and the mining industry of British
Columbia, divested of its spasmodic and uncertain character,
settled down upon a steady and permanent basis.    The construction of these roads, which have done so much for the
prosperity of British Columbia, is justly regarded as the
crowning achievement of Governor Douglas, who shortly
afterwards terminated his public career, not without ha vino-
given to the world such an ample vindication of his course
that the public opinion of the colony pronounced unmistakably in his favour.    Not the least memorable feature of the
last few years of his term of office was the part he took in
1859 in the peaceful settlement of the San Juan difficulty,
when war seemed almost unavoidable.    By his coolness and
discretion the matter was settled for the time by an agreement arrived at between himself and  General  Scott, as
American Commissioner, for a joint occupation of the island
until the matter could be finally disposed of by arbitration.
In 1866, the  colonies of Vancouver Island   and British
Columbia were united under the latter designation, and on
the 20th July, 1871, the union with Canada was accomplished, concerning  which full details  have already been
given.    How that measure has conduced to the prosperity
of British  Columbia may be gathered from the census returns which show that the population exclusive of Indians,
has increased from ten to twenty-three thousand within the
decade.    But the full realization of the advantages of union
are yet to come, as her future prosperity is bound up with
the completion of the railway which will bring her into com- 1120       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
munication with Eastern Canada and direct the flow of immigration to her rich agricultural and mining lands.
Reference has previously been made to some of the
British Columbia representatives in the Dominion Parliament of Scottish origin. Another name, which is deserving of mention is that of Robert Wallace, one of the first
members elected from the Pacific slope on the accomplishment
of the union. He was born in the City of Glasgow in 1820.
Mr. Wallace is a commission merchant in Victoria, and took
a prominent part in the movement in favour of union with
Canada. He was president of the convention of delegates of
the Confederation league held at Yale in September, 1868,
for the purpose of accelerating the admission of British Columbia into the Dominion. He was returned for Vancouver
Island as a Conservative in December, 1871, but only occupied his seat during one session, being succeeded by Sir Francis Hincks.
A large proportion of the members of the provincial legislature since the union have been of Scottish origin. Hon.
John Robson, a member of the present administration is a
Scottish Canadian; he was born at Perth, Ontario, on the
14th of March, 1824. Mr. Robson -was mayor of New Westminster in 1866, and held the position of paymaster of the
Canadian Pacific Railway in British Columbia from 1875
until that office was abolished in 1879.' He represented New
Westminster and Nanaimo in the legislative council of British Columbia from 1866 until 1875. He was elected to the
legislative assembly for New Westminster at the last general election of July, 1882, and in January, 1883, became a
member of  the administration of Hon. W. Smithe, with the THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.       1121
portfolio of the provincial secretary and minister of finance
and agriculture.    He is a Conservative in his political views
Among the Scots who have held seats in the assembly of
late years but are not at present members, are James W.
Douglas, eldest son of the late Governor Douglas, born in
Victoria in 1846, who represented the City of Victoria in the
legislature of 1875-8 ; Dr. William Fraser Tolmie, a Scot by
birth, who sat in the Vancouver Island Assembly before the
union, and represented Victoria District between the years
1874-8 ; William A. Robertson, born in Perthshire, Scotland,
who was elected in 1874 for Victoria District; William Morrison, a Scotsman, who came to British Columbia in 1862,
and was returned for Lillooet in 1875 ; and Donald McGillivray, a Scottish Canadian from Glengarry, born in 1838, a
representative of New Westminster between 1878 and 1882,
The present House includes among its members William
Monroe Dingwall (Comox), whose ancestors were farmers-
near Dingwall, Ross-shire, where he was born in 1851, and
who came to British Columbia in 1876, and is now in
business at Comox as a general merchant; Robert Duns-
muir (Nanaimo), born in Hurlford, Ayrshire, in 1825, an
extensive proprietor of coal mines, and George Archibald
M'Tavish, (Victoria District), born at New York in 1856, of
a family from the Island of Islay, a seed grower and stock
breeder, and formerly president of the Agricultural Society
of the Province. All these are of Conservative opinions
and supporters of the Smithe administration. Judging by
the names there are several other legislators who might be
entitled to a notice here were the data as to their birth or
parentage obtainable. CHAPTER VIII.
JOURNALISM  AND LITERATURE.
[HERE is no sphere of the intellectual life of Canada
in which Scotsmen have from the first been more prominent than that of journalism and literature. It will be
impossible within the limited space now remaining at our
•command, to give as comprehensive a survey of this field as
would be desirable, but this is to be the less regretted as a
great portion of it has already been traversed in connection
with the political history of the country. Most of the leading
journalists of the past have been keen politicians, and active
participants in public life, as is usually the case in a new
oountry where the process, known to the political economist,
as subdivision of labour, and to the scientist as differentiation of functions, has not been carried to the same degree as
in older communities. Political writers and speakers hold
much the same relative positions as attorney and counsel.
The latter functions,, separated in England, are nearly
always united here, and so to a large extent with the
former. True the process of social evolution is rapidly
bringing about a change, but in the exciting struggles of
the past it was frequently the case that those who framed
the pleadings and worked up the ease for the respective
parties, also urged it viva voce before the parliamentary THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.       1123
tribunal, and the supreme court of the hustings. The
journalists who remain to be dealt with, therefore, are those
who have either not taken a conspicuous part in active
political life, or who have entered it subsequently to the
issue of the preceding portion of this work.
There is probably no man on the press in Canada to-day
possessing a larger measure of that indefinable quality known
as " newspaper sense" than Mr. John Gordon Brown, who
succeeded his brother the late Hon. George Brown as editor
of the Toronto Globe. The public have never yet realized to
how great an extent the success of the Globe was due to the
sound judgment and rare executive capacities of the younger
brother. Hon. George Brown as ostensible and virtual leader
of the Reform party attracted so large a share of the public
attention, and his reputation as a public man was so indisso-
lubly linked with the name of the journal upon which he
held the leading position, that the intrinsically important
part taken by his relative in the less obtrusive sphere of
journalism proper was necessarily thrown into shadow.
John Gordon Brown was born in Alloa, Clackmannanshire,
on the 16th of November, 1827, being the junior of his brother by some six years. He received his education partly in
Edinburgh and partly in New York, to which latter city he
came with his parents in his eleventh year. Some five years
later he arrived in Toronto. He was connected with the
Globe from the time of its foundation, excepting during comparatively short intervals. He edited the Quebec Gazette
for about a year during one of these periods and also travelled a good deal in Europe from time to time.    In 1851 he
visited the great International Exhibition in London, con-
13 K?^^^^^^^^^^^^*^«
1124       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA
tributing a very comprehensive and interesting series of descriptive letters to his newspaper. From the time of his
return the editorial department of the Globe was mainly
under his control, subject of course to the broad general lines
of policy laid down in respect to its political course. Hon.
George Brown for very many years before his untimely
death concerned himself but little with the every-day details
of editorial management, devoting himself almost altogether
to the commercial department and political matters not
directly connected with the newspaper. It was Mr. Gordon
Brown's close and practical supervision and forcible pen
which during these years maintained and extended the well
won prestige of the Globe. When his brother fell by the
hand of a murderer, many people who were in ignorance of
the real relation in which Mr. Gordon Brown stood to the
journal, expected a marked falling off in vigour and interest.
But as time wore on it became plainly evident that its old-
time reputation was destined to be fully sustained by his
formal elevation to the position he had long virtually occupied. Mr. Brown's leading idea was to make the Globe before all things a newspaper, and while remaining faithful
to the traditions of Liberalism to assert a wider liberty of
expression than the narrow trammels of party conventionalities had previously permitted. His attitude towards the
Liberal leaders was not unlike that of the public man who
when accused of disloyalty to the Sovereign, replied that he
could never so far forget his duty to His Majesty as even to
entertain a disloyal thought, but that he did not consider himself bound to be loyal to the king's "man servant and his maid
servant, his. ox and his ass."    Mr. Brown was of too indepen- THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.       1125
dent a spirit to permit every ward politician, pettifogger and
on-hanger claiming to be an adherent of the party, and to
speak in its name to sway his course or use the columns of
the Globe for their personal advantage. At the same time
he spared no pains or expense in improving the paper, and
developing that feature of many-sidedness which had not
previously been a characteristic of the Canadian press. It
would be out of place here to enter into the. cause, or rather
the combination of causes, which resulted in Mr. Brown's
retirement from the control of the journal to the development of which he had devoted his life's best energies. Suf-
fice it to say that of all concerned directly or indirectly in
the matter, Mr. Brown has least reason to fear full publicity.
Shortly after the change he was appointed Registrar of the
Surrogate Court in Toronto. Mr. Brown possesses a thoroughly cultivated mind and a vast store of general information, the result of a remarkably wide range of reading. He
has been a keen student ever since boyhood, and in addition to
diligent perusal of the abundant standard works of literature
has kept en rapport with the spirit of modern thought and
research. He is an excellent judge of character, and to this
intuitive knowledge of the dispositions and capacities of
men, his success in a position requiring large administrative
ability was in no small measure due. There are few men in
this country who possess an equally full and accurate knowledge of the politics of Continental Europe as he has acquired
by his personal observations as a tourist followed up by extensive reading.
Mr. John Cameron, Mr. Brown's successor in the editorial
chair of the Globe, is a Scottish Canadian.   He was born in ^HH
1126       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
Markham Township, Ontario, on the 22nd of January,
1843, his father being from Argyllshire and his mother
a native of the North of Ireland. Removing when a boy
to London, Ontario, he learned the printing trade in the
office of the Free- Press. ' Immediately on the expiration of
his apprenticeship Mr. Cameron, then about twenty-one,
conceived the bold idea of establishing an evening paper in
London. He had no means, and the paper, in order to live,
would have to pay its own way from the start. Such an
undertaking now-a-days would be utterly Quixotic, but at
that time the demands of the public in the way of news,
were much less exigent and expenses in every department
much smaller than to-day. The Evening Advertiser was
accordingly launched on the 27th of October, 1863, and
fortune smiled propitiously upon the venture from the outset. The paper was at first of very small dimensions, but it
really in the language of the prospectuses " filled a long
felt want," and grew in circulation, size and prestige 'year
by year until it ranked "among the prominent dailies of'the
province. Morning and weekly editions were published,
and a valuable newspaper property built up. Of course
this was not accomplished except by long years of persistent,
unremitting labour on the part of Mr. Cameron and his
brother William, who was associated with him in the enterprise. A specialty of the paper is the short, crisp, pungent
paragraphs in which the politics of the day are discussed—
a style of writing a good deal less common when first adopted by the Advertiser than it has now become. During his
editorship of that paper, Mr. Cameron visited Great Britain
and the European Continent, giving his impressions in a THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.       1127
series of graphically written letters to his journal which
were afterwards republished in book form.
Mr. Cameron became editor and general manager of the
Globe in December, 1882, his position on the Advertiser
being taken by Hon. David Mills as editor, while Mr. William Cameron assumed the business management. Under Mr.
John Cameron's direction, a policy of rigid economy was
adopted in the Globe office, many expenses deemed superfluous being cut off. The prevailing idea in the arrangement of news matter is that of brevity and condensation in
place of the extended notice formerly bestowed on matters
of secondary importance. Mr. Cameron has always been a
Liberal of somewhat advanced views, and an advocate
of temperance reform and the enlargement of the sphere
of woman. He is essentially a man of tact, shrewdness and
resource, and though criticism has not been silent as to the
effect of the change upon the style of the great newspaper,
the destinies of which have been entrusted to his keeping, it
must be admitted that he has, on the whole, borne well the
trying ordeal of comparison with his veteran predecessor.
Mr. William Houston, the recently appointed Librarian of
the Ontario Parliamentary Library, was born in the County
of Lanark, Ontario, on the ninth of September, 1844. He
is of Scottish ancestry, his father being an Orcadian from
Mainland, near Stromness, and his mother of mixed Highland and Lowland origin from Glasgow. Both parents came
to Canada in youth with the early settlers of Lanark, and
were subjected to the hardships and privations incidental to
that period. Mr. Houston received only a common school
education in his boyhood, in Lanark and Bruce counties, to 1128       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
which latter he went at the age of thirteen, shortly after the
region had been thrown open for settlement. Here he spent
some years in school teaching. Determined to obtain a thorough education he went to the University of Toronto, at an
age somewhat later than the usual period of college life and
graduated with honours in 1872. He entered immediately
upon the profession of journalism obtaining a position on
the staff of the Toronto Globe. He continued in connection
with that newspaper for eleven years, with the exception of
brief intervals when his services were engaged by the St.
John Telegraph, and the short-lived Toronto Liberal. In
the latter part of 1883, he was appointed to the office he now
holds for which he is well fitted by his intimate knowledge
of Canadian political history, no less than by his literary information and the painstaking accuracy which is so marked
a feature of his character. His journalistic career was
marked by great assiduity and a thorough grasp of the
questions with which he undertook to deal. His style is
not ornate, but his points are always clearly and forcibly
put from a practical common sense standpoint. In short he
has the national characteristics of soundness and clear-headedness in an eminent degree.
Mr. Christopher Blackett Robinson, the editor and
proprietor of the Canada Presbyterian newspaper, is a
Canadian by birth, of partly Scottish and partly English
descent, the former element predominating. His father was
born in London, but was educated and for many years
resided in Scotland. His mother was of Highland extraction, belonging to the Clan Gunn. Mr. Robinson was born
in Thorah Township, in the County of Ontario, in 1S37.. THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.       1129
He engaged in journalism in his twentieth year, editing the
Canadian Post, then published in Beaverton, for a couple
of years. In 1861 the paper was removed by Mr. Robinson
to the rising town of Lindsay, where he continued to publish
it for about ten years. It was greatly superior to any
newspaper ever previously issued in that section of the
province, and, under Mr. Robinson's able management, soon
became a valuable newspaper property, taking high rank
among local weeklies. In 1871 Mr. Robinson parted with
the Post and removed to Toronto, where he commenced the
publication of the Canada Presbyterian, which, under his
energetic and prudent control, speedily attained a marked
success. Without seeking to be In any sense the official
organ of the Presbyterian Church, the Presbyterian has
won for itself appreciation as a fearless and forcible
exponent of the general public opinion of that body, and the
recognised vehicle of intelligence specially affecting its
interests, and indicative of its progress. Mr. Robinson has
also built up a large and flourishing book and job printing
establishment, and is the publisher of The Week, the new
literary journal just issued under the editorial charge of Mr.
Charles Goodrich Roberts, whose poetical talents have been
widely recognised.
Mr. Thomas McQueen, the founder and for many years
the editor of the Huron Signal, published at Goderich, was
a shining instance of the aptitude frequently displayed by
the sons of the Scottish peasantry for rising to positions of
eminent usefulness and honour. He was " self-made" in the
best sense of that much abused phrase by the cultivation of
all his intellectual faculties.    Born  in Ayrshire  about the !'■
1130       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
year 1803 of humble parentage his school education was extremely limited, as he was early necessitated by the pressure
of poverty to contribute by his labour to the support of the
family. The turning point of his life was an accident sustained in boyhood, which rendered him permanently lame
and afforded him the opportunity for indulging his natural
bent for study and reflection. He became a stone mason by
trade and soon distinguished himself as an eloquent and
brilliant advocate of the rights of labour. While continuing
to work at his trade he threw himself with intense and consuming earnestness into the vanguard of the ranks of labour
reform, as orator and writer. He was a poet of no mean order and published several volumes of poems which largely
partook of the tendency of his prose writing, being instinct
with the spirit of progress and liberalism. Mr. McQueen
arrived in Canada in 1842 settling in the County of Renfrew, where, for a short time he pursued his original calling.
But his strong political feelings were speedily enlisted in the
struggle for responsible government and the allurements of
journalism were too powerful to be long resisted. The
County of Huron appeared to offer a desirable field for the
establishment of a liberal newspaper and the first number
of the Signal was issued on the 4th of February, 1848. It
quickly obtained a leading position among the journals of
that period, owing to the vigour, incisiveness and soundness of
the articles from Mr. McQueen's prolific but always careful
pen. He remained steadily devoted to this undertaking
during the remainder of his busy and influential career with
the exception of a period of about two years during which
he occupied a position on a Hamilton newspaper.    In 1854, THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.       1131
after he had returned to Goderich, he became a Parliamentary candidate for the County of Huron, in the Reform interest, but was defeated. His labours in the liberal cause
were unceasing and to the last he continued to cherish a
warm interest in the class from which he sprang and to
work for their intellectual and moral advancement. He was
no mere partizan valuing success and the prizes of office
more than consistency. To him success was worthless excepting as it resulted in advancing the principles which he
had so deeply at heart. His death which took place on the
25th of June, 1861, left a void not easily or soon replaced in
the ranks of local journalism.
One of the best known writers on the Ontario press is Mr.
John Maclean, who was born in Glasgow, Scotland, on the
10th of April, 1825, his grandfather, of the same name, having come from the Island of Mull. He is descended by his
mother's side from the Cummings of Gallowayshire. He
came to Canada in 1838, but it was not until 1862 that he
turned his attention to journalism being for many years engaged in commercial pursuits. For four or five years he
was the Hamilton correspondent of the Globe, and an editorial .writer for the Hamilton Times and other Reform
journals. Though a thorough Liberal, he was convinced of
the necessity of a protective policy, which he advocated from
time to time as opportunity offered. In 1867 he took the
mattei up in a more comprehensive manner, and wrote a
pamphlet entitled " Protection or Free Trade," four thousand
copies of which were old by subscription. Two years afterwards Mr. Maclean staited the People's Journal for the advocacy of protective principles.    It was published for about g|g2Iff§s?2ig22
111.
1132       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
a year in Hamilton, but in 1870 the office was removed to
Toronto. After full and repeated exchange of views with the
leaders of both political parties Mr. Maclean made up his
mind that he could no longer remain connected with the Reform party as it appeared indissolubly wedded to Free Trade
principles. He accordingly gave his support to Sir John
Macdonald solely on the ground that the cause of protection
seemed likely to be taken up by the Conservatives. The
publication of the People's Journal was discontinued early
in 1872, the editor being engaged on the staff of the Toronto
Mail with the understanding that the paper was to advocate protectionist principles. Here he remained for upwards
of six years during which he made his influence powerfully
felt in the agitation for the adoption of the National Policy.
After the restoration of the Conservatives to power Mr.
Maclean'was engaged for two years* in Ottawa in special
statistical work for the Minister of Finance, and acted for
some months as Secretary to the Board of Appraisers of the
Customs Department. He returned to journalism in 1881
when he became editor of the Canadian Manufacturer on
its removal to Toronto—a position he still holds. He is also
a frequent editorial contributor to the Toronto World. Mr.
Maclean's style is clear and vigorous, and his articles show
a thorough mastery of the class of questions with which he
principally deals, while surprisingly free from the limitation
of view which too often accompanies the concentration of
thought into particular channels. Although a specialist he
retains a broad outlook on political and social life.
The pen-name of " The Whistler at the Plough " has been
familiar to.the reading public of Britain for nearly half a' THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.       1133
century, and during later years has become widely known
throughout Canada. Alexander Somerville, was born on the
fifteenth of March, 1811, in the parish of Oldhamstocks, Had-
dington-shire, being the youngest child of James and Mary
Orkney Somerville. He is of Norman descent by his father's
side and draws through his maternal ancestry a strain of
Scandinavian blood. His early training was of the kind
which has developed so many sterling qualities among the
Scottish peasantry, and secured a foremost place in the
world for such a large proportion of those who leave their
ranks to push their fortunes in other countries. His body
was nourished by homely fare and strengthened by rustic labour while his intellectual faculties were stimulated
by reading of a substantial character. From infancy he displayed that love for the beauties of nature and enthusiasm
for rural life and scenery which distinguishes his writings.
The earlier years of Mr. Somerville's manhood were passed
in military service, and in 1832, he became the central figure
in an episode which excited a great deal of public indignation. For a slight breach of discipline at the military riding school, in Birmingham, he was tried by court-martial
and according to the inhuman code then in force was sen-
fenced to .receive two hundred lashes. Half of this punishment was actually inflicted. The alleged violation of military rule was a mere pretext, the real cause of the brutality
of the authorities being Mr. Somerville's refusal to become a;
political informer. The agitation which ensued upon the
carrying out of this shameful sentence had a beneficial ef-
' feet in mitigating the injustice and severity of military discipline.    During the years 1835-37,' Mr. Somerville served in 1134       THE^SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
the Auxiliary Legion in Spain, under Gen. Sir De Lacy
Evans, as colour-sergeant in the 8th Highlanders. His superior officers have testified in strong terms as to his bravery and efficiency in the performance of his duties. After
leaving the army he turned his attention to newspaper writing and his graphic descriptive sketches under the signature of the " Whistler at the Plough " full of local colouring
and written in a readable sketchy vein soon attracted widespread attention. During the twenty years between 1838
and 1858, Mr. Somerville represented several leading metropolitan papers, travelling all over the United Kingdom, describing local industries and institutions, sketching the condition of the people and describing, in short, everything noteworthy that came within the range of his keen powers of
observation. These letters were largely reproduced by the
British provincial press, and became a powerful factor in
moulding public opinion upon current political questions*
" I know nothing in the English language," wrote the late
Mr. Cobden, " which for graphic narrative and picturesque
description of places, persons and things surpasses some of
the letters of Alexander Somerville, the ' Whistler at the
Plough.'' He rendered efficient aid to the agitation in favour of Free Trade, and in the years 1848-50' wrote a
I History of the Fiscal System," and various other papers
for the Financial Reform Association of Liverpool. Mr.
Somerville was not at anytime a dogmatic advocate of Free'
Trade in all commodities. In Canada he soon observed that
the conditions of manufactures and commerce were not the
same as in Britain. During the last twenty-three years he
has travelled extensively in Canada, sending to many Eng- THE SOOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.       1135
ish journals vivid and interesting pen-pictures of our natural scenery, and our industrial conditions. His writings have
undoubtedly done much to familiarize the British people with
the realities of Canadian life, and to disabuse their minds of
the misapprehensions respecting this country which so long
prevailed. His is an industrious and a facile pen and few
journalists have had a more active and varied experience of,
or are more familiar with, life in all its phases than the
I Whistler." He has for some years been a resident of Toronto, having adopted Canada as his home.
Among the new members returned to the Dominion Parliament in 1882 were two leading representatives of the local
press of Ontario—both Scotsmen. James Innes was born<
in Huntley, Aberdeenshire, on the 1st of February, 1833.
He began life as a school-teacher in his native land, but on
arriving in Canada, in 1853, adopted the vocation of journalism. In 1862 he became editor and publisher of the Guelph
Mercury, which has a high standing among the Reform newspapers of Western Ontario. Mr. Innes has been a High
School Trustee for a number of years, is chairman of the
Guelph Board of Education, and has taken an active interest
in many public enterprises. He was always on the Reform
side of politics, and was returned in that interest for South
Wellington at last general election. James Somerville is
also a life-long Reformer. His parents came from Fifeshire,
Scotland, about half a century ago, settling in Dundas,
where he was born, on the 7th of June, 1834. After receiving a good education at the public and grammar schools of
his native town, he acquired a knowledge of the newspaper
business, and in 1854 established the Ayr Observer.    In II
1136       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
1858 he disposed of this journal, and returned to Dundas,
where he started the True Banner, which he has successfully conducted ever since. For many years Mr. Somerville
has been prominent in municipal matters, having occupied
the position of Warden of Wentworth County and Mayor of
Dundas, as well as many less important trusts. He represents North Brant in the House of Commons.
Alexander Whyte Wright is well known in connection
with journalism and political agitation though not at present
actively engaged in either direction. He was born in Mark-
ham Township, at what is now the village of Elmira, about
the year 1§45, his father being from Glasgow and his mother
from Fifeshire. He was engaged for several years in the
woollen and carpet manufacturing industries in Preston and
-St. Jacobs. In 1874.he became regularly connected with
the press, though, for several years previous he had from
time to time contributed fugitive articles to various journals.
He edited, with marked  ability  and  power,  the Guelph
Herald, Orangeville Sun, and Stratford Herald; and, in
t
1876, came to  Toronto and took charge of the editorial
' department of the National. He took a prominent part
in the National Policy agitation, supplementing his journalistic labours by the delivery of numerous speeches
throughout the country in favour of a protective tariff.
Being an apt, ready speaker, well-versed in the details of
the question and the practical needs of Canadian industries, and having unusual powers of repartee and illustration, his services on the stump were greatly in demand
during the campaign of 1877. After the triumph of the
National Policy, Mr. Wright turned his attention to other THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.        1137
and less popular reforms, advocating the adoption of a national paper currency with the same zeal and enthusiasm
which had animated him in the struggle over the tariff question. In the fall of 1880 he came forward as a candidate
for West Toronto for the House of Commons on a platform
embracing national currency, and other measures. "His
views, however, did not meet with general acceptance.
Shortly afterwards Mr. Wright withdrew from journalism, and became Secretary of the Manufacturers' Association, and also of the Niagara Steel Works. As a popular
orator, Mr. Wright holds a leading position. He is a man
of marked individuality, not afraid to reason from first principles, and totally devoid of that slavish deference to, authority and conventional opinion which has done so much to
sap the intellectual vitality of Canadian life, and render
much of the journalistic field an arid waste of platitude interspersed with oases vivid with a tropical luxuriance of invective. He has given much thought to the social question,
in its various phases, and is an unswerving advocate of the
rights of labour.
The name of " Cousin Sandy " will be remembered by a
great many of our readers in connection with the press of a
dozen years ago, many telling prose contributions and poetical squibs appearing in different journals over that signature. Their author was Mr. John Fraser, a Scot either by
birth or descent, who, prior to emigrating to Canada
achieved a considerable reputation in England in connection
with the Chartist movement. He possessed great power of
sarcasm and invective, which found full scope for their exercise in that memorable struggle for the rights of the peo- 1138       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
pie. His original vocation was that of a tailor, which he
followed for a considerable time at Stanstead, in the Province of Quebec, indulging at the same time those literary
pursuits for which he had a natural gift. He afterwards
accepted the position of canvasser for a prominent book-
publishing firm in Montreal, and in this capacity his travels
extended widely throughout Canada. His versatile talents
and genial disposition secured him a wide circle of friends
and acquaintances wherever he went. He distributed his
contributions among a number of newspapers, mostly of the
Liberal school of politics, many of his clever satirical verses
appearing in the Montreal Herald. He met his death by
accident at Ottawa, in the early part of June 1872, by falling down the precipice in rear of the Parliament Buildings.
He struck the rocks in his descent and was instantly killed.
Mr. George Maclean Rose has been so long and prominently associated with the development of Canadian literature that his name may well be introduced in this connection.
He was born in Wick, Caithness-shire, Scotland, on the 14th
of March, 1829, and learned the printing trade in the office
of the John 0'Groat Journal. A year after he had attained
his majority the family settled in Canada. He entered the
employ of Mr. John C. Beckett, of Montreal, who was then
engaged in the publication of the Montreal Witness and
other journals. After the death of his father, which took
place in 1853, the care of the family devolved upon him.
The means at his command were but scanty, but in partnership with his elder brother, Henry, he started a small job
printing office.    By strict industry and economy they ob- THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.       1139
tained a fair measure of success. In 1856 they dissolved
partnership, George having become convinced that Western
Canada offered more scope for his energies than Montreal.
In connection with Mr. John Muir he established the Chronicle, in the village of Merrickville, but he did not remain
there any length of time. Among his other engagements
about this period, was that of city editor of the London
Prototype. In 1858, he came to Toronto as manager of the
printing office of Mr. Samuel Thompson, for whom he published the Toronto Atlas, started in opposition to the Colonist, which had taken ground adverse to the government of
the day. Mr. Thompson having obtained the contract for
government printing, Mr. Rose was assigned to take the
management of the office in Quebec, whither he removed in
1859. This arrangement did not long continue. Mr. Thomp-
•son found himself unable financially to carry out his -contract alone, and a company was organized for the purpose,
including Mr. Rose and Mr. Robert Hunter, an experienced
accountant.. Mr. Thompson retired from the business altogether soon afterwards, leaving it to the new firm of Hunter,
Rose & Co., who completed the contract and secured its renewal. On the removal of the seat of Government to
Ottawa in 1865, the firm of course followed. A large and
lucrative business was soon built up, and in 1868, a branch
was established at Toronto, the firm having secured a ten
years' contract for the printing of the Provincial Government. In 1871 their relations with the Dominion Government terminated, and the business was' consolidated in
Toronto. The firm now entered extensively into the business of publishing Canadian reprints of English copyright
14 1140       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
books, principally the popular novels of living writers, for
which a ready market was found. The firm honestly compensated the authors whose works they reproduced, although
this of course placed them at a disadvantage as compared
with the piratical publishers of the United States. Another
and probably a greater service to the intellectual progress of
the country rendered by this enterprising firm, was the
publication—at first for others, but latterly at their own
risk—of the Canadian Monthly, the last and by far the
best literary magazine ever issued in this country. This
venture unfortunately did not prove pecuniarily successful,
and though sustained for many years with a liberality and
public spirit highly creditable to the publishers, was at length
discontinued. In 1877 the death of Mr. Hunter left Mr.
Rose the sole member of the firm, and a year afterwards he
took his brother Daniel into the concern, the well-known
firm name being still retained. Widely as Mr. George M.
Rose is known to the Canadian people as a successful and
enterprising publisher, he has acquired a still more extensive
reputation by his unselfish exertions in the cause of temperance and moral reform. A life-long total abstainer and prohibitionist, he has taken an active part in temperance work
in connection with various organizations. He has attained
the highest offices in the gift of the Sons of Temperance in
the Dominion, having been several times chosen to fill the
chair of Grand Worthy Patriarch of the Order both in Quebec and Ontario, and has also held the second highest position conf errable by that Order for the whole continent, having been Most Worthy Associate of the National Division of
America.   His heart and purse are always open to the ap- THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.        1141
peals for the advancement of the temperance cause, which
he regards as being of vastly more importance than mere
party issues. Though a Liberal politically he regards all
public issues from the standpoint of temperance reform.
Personally Mr. Rose is genial, sociable and unassuming. As
his career shows, he has abundant business capacity, and the
enthusiasm which forms so strong a feature of his character
is well regulated by a fund of practical common sense.
Mr. David Wylie, of Brockville, known as the " father of
the Ontario Press," was born in Johnstone, Renfrewshire,
Scotland, his parents being William and Mary Orr Wylie,
on the 23rd of March, 1811. He evinced a taste for reading
at an early age. In January, 1826, he was apprenticed to
the printing trade in the office of Stephen Young, Paisley,
where he remained for upwards of three years, finishing his
term of apprenticeship at the University Printing office,
Glasgow. He first commenced to write for the Greenock
Advertiser, to which he contributed some short stories and
sketches in addition to ordinary journalistic work. He
afterwards held a situation on the Glasgow Guardian for
about a year and a half. Subsequently he went to Liverpool where he became reporter and proofreader on the Mail,
remaining in that employment for about eight years. After
a period spent in Manchester on the Anti-Corn-Law Circular, the organ of the Free Traders, Mr. Wylie returned to
his native land taking the management of the Fife Herald,
published in the town of Cupar, at that time edited by the
celebrated Mr. Russell afterwards of the Edinburgh Scotsman. In the year 1845 he was offered a situation in Montreal by Mr. John C. Becket, then publisher of the Witness 1142       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
and several other serials. He accepted the proposition and
for several-years remained in Mr. Becket's employ. In 1849
he became parliamentary reporter for the Montreal Herald
besides doing a great deal of miscellaneous work for the
press of Montreal. Later in the same year he came to>
Brockville and took charge of the Recorder which under his
able management soon became noted as a powerful Reform
journal and commanded a wide-spread influence in that section of the Province. He continued to edit the Recorder for
nearly thirty years. During the last few years of his proprietorship he issued a daily edition which met with encour-,
aging success. Mr. Wylie is a poet of marked ability and
taste, and in 1867 issued a collection of his poems under the
title of " Waifs from the Thousand Isles " which met with
deserved acceptance at the hands of the public. He revisited:
Scotland in 1870, being commissioned by the Ontario Government to present the claims of Canada as a field for'settle-
ment to the Scottish people. He delivered numerous addresses on that subject in addition to writing a series of
letters to the Glasgow Herald, in which the advantages held
out by Canada to intending emigrants were fully set forth.
While resident in Montreal Mr. Wylie became connected
with the volunteer force with which he has ever since been
associated, having risen to the rank of Lieut-Colonel and Paymaster of Military District No. 4. For upwards of twenty
years he has been Chairman of the Board of School Trustees
and has taken an active interest in many public enterprises.
Evan MacColl, who has gained a wide celebrity both as a
Gaelic and an English poet, was born at Kenmore, Loci
Fyne-side, Scotland, on the 21st   of September, 1808, i
:n
in THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.       H43
which neighbourhood he was known as " Clarsair-nam-
beann " or the Mountain Minstrel. He was the child of parents in a humble walk of life, though boasting a long lineao-e
his paternal ancestors being the MacColls of Glasdruim Glen-
creran. His mother belonged to the Clan Cameron and the
poetic faculty of MacColl was inherited from her. Evan
received a fair education, his father, though ill able to afford
the expense, engaging a tutor for him in order that he might
have advantages superior to those which the village school
could afford. He soon acquired a decided taste for literature
and read with avidity such books as came in his way. The
perusal of Burns' poems and some of the standard English
classics gave a marked impetus to the literary bent of his
mind and when hardly out of his boyhood he began to compose poetry. He was during his youth employed in farming,
and fishing, but though the nature of his avocations retarded
they did not suppress his intellectual development. Evan
MacColl was not destined to be a mute inglorious Milton,
and chill penury did not "freeze the genial current of
his soul." In 1837 he became a contributor to the Gaelic
Magazine then published in Glasgow. His poems excited
much interest and speedily won a reputation for the youthful author. Before long a collection of his Gaelic poems was
published, under the title of "Clarsach nam Beann" or
I Poems and Songs in Gaelic." This was followed by another
collection under the title of " The Mountain Minstrel, or
Poems and Songs in English." This publication won him
fresh laurels and many competent literary authorities were
loud in his praise. Dr. Norman McLeod, editor of Good
Words, wrote as follows: " Evan MacColl's poetry is the pro- 11 Hi1
1144       TEE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
duct of a mind impressed with the beauty and the grandeur
of the lovely scenes in which his infancy has been nursed.
We have no hesitation in saying that the work is that of a
man possessed of much poetic genius. Wild indeed and
sometimes rough are his rhymes and epithets, yet there are
thoughts so new and striking—images and comparisons so
beautiful and original—feelings so warm and fresh that
stamp this Highland peasant as no ordinary man." Mr. Mac-
Coil's family emigrated to Canada in 1831 but he remained
behind, and in 1837 procured a clerkship in the customs at
Liverpool. Here he remained until 1850, when his health
having became impaired he visited his friends in Canada.
Here he met with Hon. Malcolm Cameron, then in office and
was by him offered a position in the Canadian Customs at
Kingston which he gladly accepted. He remained in this
post for thirty years being superannuated about the year
1880. He has written numerous poems, chiefly of a lyrical
character, during his residence in Canada, one of the most
noted of which is his Robin, written for the occasion of the
Burns Centennial celebration in Kingston, the easy and
melodious expression of which is in excellent imitation of
Burns' own style. He has been for many years the bard of
the St. Andrew's Society of Kingston, and his anniversary
poems are greatly appreciated by all Scotsmen. Mr. MacColl
is a thorough Scot in his tastes, sympathies and characteristics. His nature is simple and sincere and his many amiable qualities have won the sympathy and esteem of a wide
circle of friends. His poetic gifts have been transmitted to
his daughter, Miss Mary J. MacColl, who recently published THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.       1145
a meritorious little volume of poems entitled " Bide a wee,"
highly commended for their sweetness and delicacy.
An old time journalist who, in his day, did excellent service in the cause of political and religious freedom, is Mr.
James Lesslie, whose family took a prominent part in the
commercial and public life of the then town of York. His
father was Edward Lesslie, a native of Dundee, Scotland,
who carried on an extensive book and stationery business
in that town for many years. Mr. Edward Lesslie had a
family of twelve children, and rightly considering that their
prospects in life would be improved by emigration to the
New'World, determined to settle in Canada. In 1820 John
Lesslie, one of the sons, came out in advance of the rest of
the family, and selected the town of York as a good field
for commercial enterprise. It was then little more than a
village, the buildings being of wood, and the streets chroni-
cally in the condition which earned it the soubriquet of
" Muddy Little York." John Lesslie began business in a
two story house opposite the English Church, at that time
a wooden structure on the site of the present St. James'
Cathedral. In accordance with the customary practice at
that time, he kept a general stock of goods, but his specialties were books and drugs, in which lines he had for some
time a monopoly. William Lyon Mackenzie, who arrived at
York shortly afterwards, found employment for a time with
Mr. Lesslie, and in 1821 was entrusted with the management of a branch store opened in Dundas. The other members of the Lesslie family came out in 1822, and the following year, making their home in Dundas. The business of
" Lesslie &   Sons"   was extended,   another   branch being •
1146       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
opened in Kingston. . Mr. Edward Lesslie died in 1828, and
some years afterwards the firm was reorganized, John retaining the Dundas branch, and the interests of the others
being concentrated at Toronto under the name of " Lesslie
Brothers."   The partnership continued until the death of Mr.
William Lesslie, in 1843.   Mr. James Lesslie took a leading
part in many social and public movements of a moral and
intellectual character.    He was President  of the " Young
Men's Society,"   organized in 1833 on a basis somewhat
similar to the Young Men's Christian Association of to-day,
and Secretary of the Mechanics' Institute established in the
same year.    When the town of York became the city of
Toronto in 1834, Mr. Lesslie was chosen alderman for St.
David's ward.    In 1836 he took a leading part in conjunction with James Hervey Price, James Beaty and others in
establishing the House of Industry,  and about this time
made his influence strongly felt in combating the Church
of England ascendancy in public affairs.    He was appointed
cashie'r, and afterwards President of the " Bank of the People," a joint stock institution, established in 1835, in opposition to the chartered banks under Family Compact control.    This bank successfully passed through the  trying
ordeal of the crisis of 1836, and in 1840   was merged in the
Bank of Montreal.    In February, 1836, Mr. Lesslie was chosen in connection with Mr. Jesse Ketchum to deliver to Sir
Francis Bond Head the celebrated " rejoinder " to the official
reply of His Excellency to an address presented by the citizens—a proceeding which being contrary to official etiquette
required   no little  tact,  and   was  adroitly accomplished.
When the insurrection of 18'37 broke out, James and Wil- THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.        1147
Ham Lesslie, whose influence had been thrown on the side
of law and order, were subjected to imprisonment simply because they were known as staunch advocates of civil and
religious liberty. Their, premises were occupied and plundered by the disorderly militia—a proceeding said to have
been ordered by Attorney General Hag'erman. After ex-
amination by the Commissioners of Treason, both brothers
were released. William shortly afterwards started on a
journey to be married, and was again arrested on the stage
when near Kingston, and without any legal formality thrown
into jail at that town, and treated as a convicted felon. The
matter was brought to the notice of Sir Francis Bond Head,
but he refused to interfere. Such outrages were perpetrated with great frequency at this time by the official party.
The extent of this persecution of the friends of constitutional reform, led James Lesslie to transmit a strong memorial to the Imperial Government through Sir Henry Par-
nell, then the representative of Forfarshire in the House of
Commons. It formed the subject of a dispatch from the
Colonial office to Lieutenant-Governor Head, who, in his
published correspondence, stigmatized the Lesslies, [and all
constitutional Reformers as " notorious republicans." Very,
many left the province, as political progress and redress of
existing wrongs appeared for a time hopeless, and the
Family Compact intrenched the more firmly in power by
the abortive attempt to overthrow them. A scheme for a
general emigration to some of the newer territories of the
United States was jse| on foot, and a society formed for this
purpose, entitled "The Mississippi Emigration Society," of
which Mr., now Sir Francis Hincks, was secretary.    Three 1148       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
delegates were chosen to proceed to the Far West and select
a site for the proposed Canadian colony, viz.:—Mr. Peter
Perry, representative of Whitby, in the legislature; Mr.
Thomas Parke, member for Middlesex, and Mr. James Lesslie.
They selected Davenport, Iowa, then a small village, as
the most promising location. Mr. Lesslie suffered from
a severe attack of bilious fever, owing to the hardships endured by the party in their travels through a wild and uncivilized region. The scheme eventually fell through owing
partly to the conciliatory course of Lord Durham, and the
prospects held out by him of speedy reform.
About 1844, James Lesslie purchased the Examiner
newspaper, published in Toronto, from Mr. Hincks, who then
went to Montreal and became editor of "the Pilot. His
brother, Mr. Joseph Lesslie, assisted him in the editorial
conduct of the paper for a year or more, when he gave it up,
James Lesslie carried on the paper successfully, and his
able pen rendered it a powerful factor in the conflict for
religious equality. In 1854, the question was forever settled by the abolition of the State Church, when he sold
out the paper to Mr. Brown, of the Globe. In 1855, he
disposed of his book, stationery and drug business, and two
years later purchased the homestead of Hon. James Hervey
Price, near the village of Eglington, where he now resides
having passed his 80th year. His brother John, also an
octogenarian, lives in Dundas with his unmarried sister,
Helen* Two other sisters, Mrs. John Paterson and Mrs.
Robert Holt, widows, also jeside in that town. Charles
Lesslie, who went to Davenport, Iowa, in 1839, is resident
there, but in feeble health.
■ John Lesslie has since died. THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.       1U9
Mr. Daniel Morrison was for a long time connected with
the Toronto press and obtained a high reputation as a-
powerful and sarcastic writer. He was the son of Rev. Mr.
Morrison, of Inverness, Scotland, and came to Canada at an
early age. For some time he was engaged in farming in
Wentworth County, and subsequently edited the Dundas-
Warder, in which capacity he speedily achieved a reputation as an able journalist. He afterwards obtained a position on the Toronto Leader. In conjunction with Mr.George
Sheppard he purchased the Colonist from Mr. Samuel Thompson and continued to edit that journal until 1859, when
he was appointed by the government one of the provincial
arbitrators. The year following he resigned his office and
accepted the editorship of the Quebec Morning Chronicle.
In 1861 he had charge of the London Prototype and shortly
afterwards went to New York, where he was engaged on
the staff of the Tribune and other journals. He returned tc-
Canada some years afterwards, having accepted the position
of editor of the Toronto Telegraph. He died about the
year 1869. In 1858 he married the talented Canadian
actress, Miss Charlotte Nickinson, who survives him.
Reference has already been made very briefly to Mr.
John Gait, the father of Sir Alexander T. Gait, and known
as a distinguished Scottish novellist and the founder of the
city of Guelph. Mr. Gait was born in Irvine, on the 2nd
day of May, 1779. The following year his father, who was
the captain of a ship in the West India trade, left Ayrshire and took up his residence in Greenock, in which town
John Gait received his education. He early manifested a
strong predilection for study and literary composition, which 1150       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
was fostered by congenial associations. During his youth
he was engaged in mercantile pursuits. In 1804 he
quitted Greenock for London, "where he started in business
on his own account, in partnership with a young man
named McLachlan from the same part of Scotland. While
engaged in this venture, Mr. Gait published an epic poem
on the battle of Largs, and continued to pursue his literary
studies with indefatigable industry, especially in the direction of metaphysics, political economy, and belles lettres. In
the course of two or three years his business affairs became
heavily involved, and insolvency followed. Mr. Gait then
went abroad for his health. At Gibraltar he made the
acquaintance of Lord Byron, then in the first flush of his
literary triumphs, and his friend Mr. Hobhouse, and for
some time accompanied them on their tour. He afterwards
visited Sicily, Malta, and Greece, where he renewed his
acquaintance with Byron, and had an interview with AH
Pacha. Constantinople and the Black Sea were also visited.
The literary fruits of this tour were a series of Letters from
thz Levant, which attained considerable success. Mr. Gait
during the period of his absence from England, also outlined
several dramas, which were afterwards completed and
published. The Ayrshire Legatees, issued in 1820, was,
however, the work which thoroughly established his reputation, in the line particularly his own, of a graphic
delineator of the provincial life of Scotland. He followed
up this vein by The Annals of the Parish, a book of superior
power, which appeared in 1820. Having made his mark in
literature and secured a wide circle of admirers, his works
succeeded   each  other rapidly.    Sir Andrew   Wylie, The THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.       1151.
Recital, The Steamboat and   The Provost, followed in succession.    Mr. Gait was not so successful in the direction of*
historical romance, to which he next turned his attention.
Ringan Gilhaize, a tale of the Covenanters, was the first
of his essays in this   line.     It was succeeded by several
others which, though comprising many effective scenes, and
some brilliant descriptive writing, were nevertheless, uneven
• and lacking in the naturalness and sustained interest of his-
previous books.    The Last of the Lairds was published just
before he left England   for the  scene  of his labours in
Canada, in 1826.    His connection with Canada was brought
about  by his appointment as agent to urge upon the Im- .
perial   Government  the   claims   of   Canadians   who had
sustained losses by the American invasion during the war
of 1812.    The negotiations and investigations that ensued,
led to the organization of the Canada Company for the acquisition and settlement of a large tract of land in the Western
Peninsula of Upper Canada.    The company procured a grant
of 1,100,000 acres in one block.    A scheme for emigration
on a large scale  was adopted.    Mr.   Gait was appointed
superintendent,  and began the work of   colonization   by
selecting a site for a town.    The spot upon which Guelph
now stands was fixed upon as the most eligible, and on the
23rd of April, 1827, Mr. Gait set out from the town which
bears his name—bestowed upon it by Hon. William Dixon,
before his arrival in the  country—accompanied   by   the
eccentric Dr. Dunlop, Mr. Prior, an employe' of the company,
and a couple of labourers.    A large maple tree was selected
which was cut down, when the party with due formality,
drank prosperity to the city of Guelph.    The present im- 3152       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
portance of that rapidly growing commercial centre vindicates the foresight of Mr.  Gait.    In  view  of its  recent
admission to  the civic status the following passage from
Mr. Gait's autobiography is of interest—" In planning the .
•city," he says, "for I will still dignify it by that title,
though applied at first in derision, I had, like the lawyers
in establishing their fees an eye to futurity in the magnitude
of the parts."*    He reserved sites for Catholic, Episcopal,
.and   Presbyterian churches  upon rising   ground,   which
have been long since adorned with handsome edifices.    The
building of a school-house was undertaken by the company.
The road work and other improvements undertaken, soon
attracted an influx of settlers, and the new community grew
rapidly, and the price of land speedily rose.    Shortly afterwards Mr. Gait undertook an extended voyage on Lake
Huron, and visited Detroit, Buffalo and other localities in
the United States.    The Canada Company's affairs did not
prosper despite the energy of Mr. Gait.    The stock of the
company was heavily depreciated, and various troubles and
disagreements occurred.    The indefatigable superintendent
.still pursued his plans for opening up the land for settlement on a large scale.    He caused a road nearly a hundred
miles in length to be constructed through the dense forest,
-with which the Huron tract was then covered, by which an
overland communication was, for the first time, established
between Lakes Huron and Ontario.  -The labourers employed were paid partly in money and partly in land.    Mr.
Gait's relations with the directors of the company becoming
xmsatisfactory,   owing   to   their   considering   the   outlay
Autobiography of John Gait, Vol. II. 61.   Am. Edition. THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.       1155
incurred in these improvements extravagant, his connection
with the company terminated in 1829, when he returned to
England, and recommenced his literary labours.   He shortly
afterwards produced a novel entitled Laurie Todd, which
was followed by Southennan, a romance of the days of Mary
Queen of Scots.  A Life of Lord Byron which excited a great
deal of angry criticism ran through several editions.    In
1834 Mr.  Gait published Literary Miscellanies, in three
volumes.   His  health, shattered by a very arduous and
wearying life, shortly afterwards broke down completely,
and he returned to end his days in his native Scotland,
dying at Greenock on the 11th of April, 1839, after several
attacks of paralysis.    The best vindication of the wisdom
of Mr. Gait's course as superintendent of the Canada Company is the success which ultimately attended this enterprise,
consequent upon his exertions.
There are several other journalists worthy of an extended
notice concerning whose careers, we  would gladly present
a few details were the requisite data accessible.   Among
them we may mention  Messrs. John Dougall and James
Redpath   Dougall,  of   the   Montreal  Witness—a journal
which takes a deservedly high rank, no less as an enterprising and well-edited newspaper than a staunch advocate of
social and moral reform, especially the cause of Temperance.
Mr. John Dougall has been the principal proprietor of the
Witness for many years, his  controlling idea being to establish a daily "paper in which the spirit of earnest, practical religion should pervade every department.    In the face
of many obstacles he succeeded in what a great many people
considered a hopeless experiment.    A similar venture in 1
1154       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
New York did not prove equally satisfactory, and after a
hard struggle the New York Daily Witness was discontinued. The weekly issue, however, still flourishes, Mr.
John Dougall devoting his principal attention to the New
York establishment, while his son, Mr. J. R. Dougall, has
charge of the Montreal publications.
Alexander McLachlan, poet and lecturer, is the son of a
Scottish mechanic, and was born in the village of Johnstone,
Renfrewshire, in the year 1820.   He is largely self-educated,
his schooling having been very limited : but being of a stu-
dious and thoughtful disposition he early gained an extensive
• knowledge of English literature.    He followed for some
years the trade of a tailor, and during his youth  took a
leading part in the Chartist movement, which at that time
flourished in Britain.    His poems are largely tinged with
the spirit of  this agitation, Mr. McLachlan having through
life retained a strong sympathy for the victims of social injustice and oppression.    In 1840 he emigrated to Canada,
quitting the needle for the axe and the plough.    He settled
in the backwoods, and his rich experience in the hardships
and struggles, triumphs *and pleasures of life in the bush,
furnished the material for some of his most characteristic
poems.    Mr. McLachlan published several volumes of poetry, the last, which embraced the cream of his previous
writings as well as many new poems, appearing in. 1874.
In the same year he revisited Scotland, where he delivered
many lectures and addresses, dealing . with Canadian life,
and literary and philosophical subjects.     Much of Mr. Mc-
Lachlan's poetry is well worthy of a place beside the utterances of more celebrated British bards, who, by the acci- THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.       1155
dent of residence near the heart of the empire, have attained
a renown which no Canadian, no matter how deserving
could hope to acquire. He is pre-eminently one of the
poets who, according to the old proverb, are "born, not
made." His style is simple and natural. There is no
straining after effect, no attempt to simulate a poetic fervour
that is not genuine and heartfelt. He is no mere rhymester
dealing in pretty conceits and elegant trifling, but appeals
to the strongest and most deeply-seated emotions of humanity. The clearness and simplicity of his writings are in
marked contrast to the involved sentences and confused
meaning of the | incomprehensible " school of poetic thought
so much in vogue. He is a poet of the people, and has
much of the freshness and spontaneity, as well as the foree
and beauty of Burns, whose influence, as well as that of
Wordsworth, appears traceable in McLachlan's mode of
thought and expression. His poems breathe an intense love
for nature and the freedom and freshness of rural life, and
he has given some of the finest descriptions of the glorious
scenery of our forests, rivers and lakes. His most noticeable fault is a tendency to repeat the same phrase somewhat
too frequently. In dealing with the great problems of life and
thought he evinces broad sympathies with humanity and
faith in its noblest aspirations. In private life Mr. McLachlan, who is still engaged in farming, is one of the most genial and loveable of men. He has rare conversational powers, and when in congenial society his native eloquence and
humour impart a vivid interest to every subject upon which
he touches. Alexander McLachlan has received but scant
justice at the hands of those who assume to be the special
15 Ull
1156       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
guardians and promoters of Canadian literature. The devotees of that superficial "culture" which regards form of
expression more than the underlying thought, have extended
to his poetic genius such a cold and grudging recognition as
that which drew from the indignant heart of the poet Burns
his scathing satire upon the literary precisians and pretenders of his day :
—" An' syno they think to climb Parnassus
By-dint o' Greek ? "
Had the Ayrshire bard himself appeared in the present
generation would he have been appreciated by these sticklers for poetic formalism ? It is very doubtful. Apart altogether from the verdict of this class of critics, it is not
creditable to the Canadian people that a singer of the power
and pathos of Alexander McLachlan, should not have met
with wider and more general appreciation than has been
accorded him. True, his is by no means a singular experience, and much of the best literary work of Canada has
been but poorly rewarded. The people who take no pride
in their poets and who pass over really able and meritorious
home writers in favour of foreigners, are yet very far from
the attainment of a robust national and patriotic feeling:
,   '' Spoke well the Grecian when he said that poems
Were the high laws that swayed a nation's mind—
Voices that live on echoes—
Brief and poetic proems,
Opening the great heart-book of human kind.
I Songs are the nation's pulses, which discover
If the great body be as nature willed.
Songs are the spasms of soul
Telling us what men suffer.
Dead is the nation's heart whose songs are stilled ! " i&tsm^
?3V
CHAPTER IX.
ADDENDA.
$TLN a work of the present character and extent, it was al-
&«-» most impossible, while pursuing the slight thread of
historical continuity which we have tried to keep in view, to
avoid the omission of names of many who are entitled to a
notice in these pages. In the scanty space yet remaining at
our disposal the endeavour will be made to rectify this defect as far as may be, by brief sketches of those Canadian
Scotsmen of note who have hitherto been passed over altogether or received a merely casual mention.
Probably the man who above all others has done most
for the commercial development of Canada was the late Sir
Hugh Allan—to whom but scanty reference has already
been made in these volumes. Sir Hugh came of a seafaring family, his father being Captain Alexander Allan, a shipmaster engaged in the trade between the Clyde and Montreal, and-two of his brothers being also sailors. He was
born at Saltcoats, in Ayrshire, Scotland, on the 29th of
September, 1810. The nautical associations of his earlier
years made a'powerful impression upon him. He was constantly thrown into the company of sailors; and familiarity 1158       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
with maritime life resulted in that strong predilection for
the water described by Byron's well-known lines—
And I have loved thee, Ocean ! and my joy
Of youthful sports was on thy breast to be
Borne like thy bubbles onward, from a boy
I wantoned with thy breakers—tbey to me
Were a delight, and if the freshening sea
Made them a terror—'twas a pleasing fear
For I was as it were a child of thee,
And trusted to thy billows far and near.
There is little doubt that his future career as the founder of the line of vessels that perpetuates his name was
largely determined by his early training and surroundings.
His scholastic education was but scanty, and at the age of
thirteen Hugh Allan entered the employ of Allan, Kerr &
Co., a shipping firm of Greenock. Here he remained for
about a year acquiring some knowledge of the business for
which he displayed a decided aptitude. Acting on the advice of his father he resolved to emigrate to Canada, and
arrived at Montreal in the spring of 1826. The difficulties
and delays experienced by his father's vessel, the Favourite,
in making the passage iip the St. Lawrence on this trip, indicate the then primitive state of the now extensive shipping
interest of our commercial metropolis. A strong head wind
prevailed, and the solitary steam-tug which then sufficed for
the commerce of the port, was unable to tow the ship up
the St. Mary's current. The services of a dozen yoke of
oxen were called into requisition, but even this additional
power was unavailing, and it was not until a large gang of
men from a shipyard at Hochelaga had lent their aid that the
vessel was enabled to drop anchor opposite Montreal There
were no wharves at that time.    The bank shelved down in THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.       1159
its natural condition and landing cargoes by means of a long
gangway was a difficult and tedious process.
The future steamship king obtained a situation with the
firm of William. Kerr & Co., dry goods merchants, which he
retained for three years, acquiring an excellent knowledge
of business methods. He also mastered the French language
and endeavoured to remedy the defects of his lack of education in boyhood by assiduous study. He determined to
revisit for a while his native land, but previous to doing so
took a trip through Upper Canada and New York State.
After spending a few months in the old country Mx. Allan
returned to Canada in the spring of 1831, and obtained a
situation with the firm of James Millar & Co, Montreal,
shipbuilders and commission merchants. Here he was engaged for some time in buying and shipping wheat, and he
turned his knowledge and experience to such good account
and devoted himself so thoroughly to the interests of the
firm that after four years of service in a subordinate position
he was admitted to a partnership in the year 1837. When
the rebellion of 1837 broke out he joined the Fifth Battalion as a volunteer and was speedily promoted to a captaincy. The death of the senior partner in 1838 resulted
in a change of the style of the firm to that of Edmonston &d"
Allan. The business continued steadily to develop in both
its branches. In 1841 the firm were employed by the Governor-General, Lord Sydenham, to build a steam frigate
which bore his name. They also constructed a small screw
steamer for the Government called the Union, notable as
one of the first vessels of that description built in the country.    The following year the firm turned their attention to
HHf^^^^^^I^*9f^SK 1160       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
the improvement of the navigation facilities of the port—
building a powerful tug-boat and several barges to lighten
vessels up and down the river. About 1845 they temporarily
discontinued ship-building, devoting themselves for some
years to the management of their vessels and other commer-
cialjnterests. About this time Mr. Allan's younger brother,
Andrew, acquired an interest in the firm, which after some
other changes of nomenclature eventually adopted the
style of Hugh & Andrew Allan. In 1851 the ship-building
branch of their business was resumed, owing to the proposals of the Government with a view to 'the establishment of a line of iron screw steamships between Liverpool and the St. Lawrence. The first contract was given
to a Glasgow firm, but after a trial of a year and a
half, the arrangement with them was abandoned as unsatisfactory, and the Allans succeeded in making terms with the
Government. The first vessel built for this line was the
Canadian, which made her first trip in 1853. The mail
service was commenced the following year, the trips being
fortnightly between Liverpool and the St. Lawrence during
the season of open navigation, and monthly to Portland during the winter. The firm surmounted great difficulties and
sustained heavy losses at the outset of this great enterprise,
but by perseverance, energy, and judgment, succeeded at
length in obtaining public confidence and placing the Allan
Line on a firm and profitable basis. The four vessels at first
engaged in the service were before long supplemented by additional ones. In 1857 the public demanded more frequent
mail communication with England, and the Government
determined that the service should be weekly throughout THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.       1161
the year. Four larger steamships were built, and the weekly
mail service set on foot on the 1st of May, 1859. This great
enterprise gave an immense impetus to the commerce of
Montreal, and in connection with the other undertakings of
the Allans did more than any other cause to give Canada a
high place on the roll of maritime nations. The firm also
established a line of steamers plying between the St. Lawrence and Glasgow. The improvement of vessel architecture
seriously engaged their attention, as they were determined
to spare no pains or expense to attain the style best adapted
to secure the safety and convenience of their passengers.
They were the first to build steamers for the Atlantic service with the spar or flush deck now generally conceded to
be a great improvement in construction, though strongly opposed at the time of its first introduction. The Allan fleet
is one of the most numerous and important on the globe, and
is managed upon a strict system of organization and discipline by which regular promotion is secured to competent
and deserving employe's, and nothing left undone to secure
thoroughness and efficiency in every detail. In 1881 the
Allans owned twenty-four ocean steamships with an aggregate of 76,130 tons and thirteen Clyde-built clippers with a
tonnage of 19,016. On more than one occasion the Imperial
Government have availed themselves of the company's
steamers for the transportation of troops in war time.
The remarkable business enterprise and foresight of Mr.
Hugh Allan found scope in many other directions than that
of his maritime undertakings. He has been identified in
one way or another with nearly all the important commercial enterprises of a corporate character undertaken in Mon- 1162        THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
treal during his time. He was a leading promoter and a
director of the Montreal Telegraph Company, a member of
the directorate of the Atlantic Cable Company, and largely
interested in many banking and other mercantile organizations. And wherever his good judgment was largely called
into requisition in the conduct of such undertaking, they
were almost uniformly crowned with success. His connection with the unfortunate Pacific Scandal, which has been
already fully explained, is an exceptional feature in a career
almost uniformly characterized by creditable public spirit
and sound discretion. When Prince Arthur visited Canada
in 1869 he was entertained by Mr. Allan in right royal
style at his mansion of Ravenscraig, in Montreal, and at
Belmere his summer residence on the beautiful shores of
lake Memphremagog. In recognition no less of his eminent
services to the commereial interests of Canada than of his
hospitality to the Prince he received the honour of knighthood at the hands of Her Majesty in the year 1871. Sir
Hugh was married on the 13th of September, 1844, to
Matilda, second daugther of Mr. John Smith, of Montreal
by whom he had a numerous family. He died towards the
close of 1882, leaving a fortune estimated at about six million dollars.
A prominent figure in the early annals of the Bay of Quints
District was Rev. Robert McDowall, the pioneer of Presbyte-
rianism in that section of the country. His parents emigra-
ted from Dumfriesshire, Scotland, and settled in the State of
New York. Robert McDowall was born in Saratoga County
on the 25th of July, 1768, received his education at William's College, Schenectady, N.Y., was ordained as a'minister THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.       116c
of the Reformed Dutch Church at Albany. In response to a
requisition from Canada he was sent over the border by that
body as a missionary in 1798, making Fredericksburg his
headquarters. He had a widely extended field of labour
among the then scattered and isolated settlements along the
frontier. His labours were incessant and he was exposed
to all the hardships and perils of travel through a wilderness destitute of roads, and infested with beasts of prey ajnd
hostile Indians. He usually journeyed on horseback, but
sometimes afoot, and made many voyages in Indian canoes,
braving with extraordinary courage the dangers by land and
water. These journeys extended as far east as Quebec, rind
on one occasion at least he travelled as far West as Middlesex County. Mr. McDowall was of a robust physique, lithe
and muscular, qualities which often stood him in good stead
in encountering perils to which a man of weaker physical
frame must inevitably have succumbed. He was a welcome
visitor in the lonely cabins of the settlers. He preached
to congregations hastily assembled in the open air or in
some available barn or schoolhouse, and held his auditors
entranced by the power and soul-stirring eloquence of his
discourses. His ready humour, lively wit and cordiality of
manner in social intercourse rendered him almost universally popular. For years he was the only available minister in a large district for solemnizing the rites of marriage
and baptism, and his advent would often be the signal for
the assembling of numerous candidates for the matrimonial estate or admission to the visible church, the ceremonial having been perforce deferred for sometime until his
arrival.    As money  was then very scarce his services in 1164       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
celebrating the marriage rite were often gratuitous, and
sometimes the contracting parties testified their appreciation by offering what would now be considered out of place.
It is stated that one grateful bridegroom paid his tribute in
the form of a load of. pumpkins. It is recorded in Dr. Can-
niff's history of the " Settlement of Upper Canada " that on
one occasion Mr. McDowall walked all the way from the
Bay of Quinte" to York following the lake shore and swimming the rivers that could not be forded. In 1837 he was
appointed by the Synod a member of a committee instructed to consider the propriety of sending a deputation
to Scotland forthe object of establishing a Collegiate Theological Institution and took a deep interest in the work preliminary to the establishment of Queen's College and University at Kingston. An interesting relic of his ministry is
hisrecord of marriages and baptisms now in the possession of
his grandson, Mr. R. J. McDowall, of Kingston, which contains about 3,000 entries. Mr. McDowall was an earnest
temperance reformer and probably the first public advocate
of total abstinence in this country. This veteran pioneer in
the cause of religion closed his long and useful life on the
3rd of August, 1841.- He left a widow and family, having
at an early period of his ministry married Hannah Washburn, daughter of Ebenezer Washburn, M. P., and sister of
Hon. Simeon Washburn, Senator.
Lachlan McCallum, of Stromness, for many years M. P.
for Monck, was born in Argyllshire, Scotland, on the 15th
of March, 1823, and emigrated to Canada in 1842. He
settled in Haldimand County where he engaged extensively
in contracting and ship-building.    He received several con- THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.       1165
tracts from the Government for the construction of harbours
on Lakes Ontario and Erie.
During the Fenian raid of 1866, Mr. McCallum commanded the Dunnville Naval Company at Fort Erie. He was an
unsuccessful candidate for the representation of Haldimand
in the Canadian Assembly at the general election of 1862,
but was more fortunate in 1867, when he was returned for
the Dominion House of Commons for Monck. He represented the same constituency in the Ontario Legislature for ayearr
resigning in ] 872, when dual representation was abolished.
He was a candidate for the Commons in 1872, but was defeated by Mr. J. D. Edgar, but in 1874 he was again elected
over the same opponent, though the following year he was
unseated for bribery committed by his agents. He was, however, re-elected the same year, and defeated Mr. Edgar again
in 1878. Mr. McCallum is a Conservative in politics, and
his practical common sense and technical knowledge made
him a useful member of the House.
Hector Cameron, Q.C, and member of the Dominion
House of Commons for the North Riding of the County of
Victoria, is the son of Assistant Commissary-General Kenneth Cameron, and was born at Montreal, on the 3rd of
June, 1832. By his father's side, he is descended from the
Glen Dessary branch of the Clan Cameron of Inverness-shire.
His mother was the daughter of Mr. Robert Selby, of North
Earl, Northumberland, England. The family returned to
England during Hector Cameron's boyhood, and he was sent
to King's College, London, and afterwards to Trinity College
Dublin, where he graduated in 1851. Returning to Canada
the same year, he took the degree of M.A. at Toronto Univer- 1166       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
sity.    General Cameron was subsequently assigned to duties
in connection with the Commissariat Department in Montreal,
Where he died in. 1855.    After Hector  Cameron  had  completed his University studies he entered upon the study of
the law, with his distinguished namesake, Hon. J. Hillyard
Cameron, and was called to the bar in 1854, when he  at
once commenced the practice of his profession.    In the year
1858 he entered into partnership-with Hon. Adam Crooks.
This connection was dissolved the following year, when Mr.
•Cameron received into  partnership  the late Mr.  Thomas
Moss, who afterwards rose to the position of Chief Justice.
In 1.864 Mr. Moss retired, Mr. Cameron practised alone until
1876, when he became the leading member of the firm of
Cameron & Appleby.    His practice has for many years been
large and lucrative, as he sustains  an excellent reputation
as a skilful and profound lawyer.  He was created a Queen's
Counsel in 1872.    A large share of Mr. Cameron's practice
is in connection with railway and telegraph companies, for
several of which he has a standing retainer.    He  has  also
taken a prominent part as director in several railway undertakings.    For many years he has taken  an active interest
in politics.    He contested South Victoria unsuccessfully for
the House of Commons in 1867, and was again on the losing
side in 1874, when he received the Conservative nomination
for the north riding of the same  county.    Better  success
attended him in. a subsequent contest in the latter constituency the year following, his temporarily  triumphant opponent, Mr. McLennan, having been unseated.    Although the
second contest was at first decided in favour of Mr.  McLennan, a scrutiny of votes gave the seat to Mr. Cameron, and THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.       1UT
he has since retained it, being returned at the two last gen-
eral elections. His course in Parliament has been consistently
Conservative, and he is a hard-working and useful member.
He has occupied the responsible position of chairman of the
Private Bills Committee. When he takes part in the debates
of the House it is generally in relation to some legal point,,
his professional standing giving great weight to his views
upon all such questions. Mr. Cameron was married, in I860,,
to Clara, eldest daughter of Mr. William Boswell, barrister,.
of Cobourg, by whom he has two children.
William Clyde Caldwell, member of the Provincial Legislature for North Lanark, and a prominent man in local
affairs, was born in the village of Lanark, on the 14th of
May, 1843, his parents being Alexander and Mary Ann
Campbell, both natives of Scotland. He was educated at
Queen's College ,Kingston, graduating in 1864. He engaged
in the lumbering industry, which was also his father's principal business. His operations during late years have been
very extensive, the out-put of his saw-mills amounting to
about 6,000,000 feet annually, of which a large proportion
is shipped to Oswego, in New York State. Mr. Caldwell is
also a miller, and has devoted considerable attention to farming. He is known in his locality as an energetic and public-
spirited man, and has held a number of municipal offices. A
vacancy occurring in the representation of North Lanark in
the Provincial Legislature, in 1872, owing to the resignation
of Mr. Daniel Galbraith, Mr. Caldwell was elected in the
Reform interest. He sustained a defeat in the general elections of 1875, but was again returned in 1879 and in 1883.
His name has become familiar to the public of late years, by 1168       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
reason of the constitutional conflict over the passage of the
Rivers and Streams Bill by the Local House, and its disallowance by the Dominion Government, the question as to
the right of the proprietor of land, through which a navigable
stream flows, to prevent its use by parties owning timber
limits on the upper waters, having been first raised in connection with his lumbering operations. In politics, Mr. Caldwell is a Reformer.
James Hall, of Peterborough, a former member of the Canadian Parliament, both before and after Confederation,
was born in Clackmannanshire, Scotland, in 1806, his father
being a merchant of the same name. He received his education in the grammar school of his native town, and studied
the profession of civil engineer in the office of his brother,
Francis Hall. In 1820, the family came to Canada, settling
in the Township of Lanark, then a wilderness. Their house
was, in fact, the first built in the township. After remaining
for some time on the farm, James Hall, junr, started a
store and distillery which he sold in 1830, going to Halifax,
N. S., where for about two years he practiced his profession
as a civil-engineer and surveyor. Returning to Lanark, he
engaged for a short time in the tanning business, first in
Lanark and afterwards in Peterborough, to which town he
removed in 1834. Here he was also concerned in extensive
commercial operations, buying wheat largely, and shipping
flour to Montreal and lumber to New York State, beino- the
first man in the neighbourhood to engage in those enterprises.
He was elected as Parliamentary representative of the united
Counties of Peterborough and Victoria in 1848, and retained
his seat until 1852.    He gave up business in 1856, and in THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.       1169
the same year was appointed Sheriff of the united Counties.
The separation of the counties took place in 1863, Mr. Hall
retaining the shrievalty of Peterborough until 1872, when
he resigned, and again went into politics, being elected member of the Dominion House of Commons for East Peterborough in 1873.    He remained in public life until 1878.
He was a consistent Reformer during his parliamentary
career.    Mr. Hall has also held several municipal offices, including that  of  Mayor of Peterborough, and has always
maintained a lively interest in anything tending to promote
the moral and intellectual welfare of the community, having
been President of the Peterborough Literary Club and Mechanics' Institute, and an active Sunday school worker.    He
married, in 1830, Jane Albro, daughter of Samuel Albro, of
Dartmouth, N. S., who died in 1S68, and by whom he had a
large family.    James Albro Hall, his eldest son, succeeded
to the shrievalty of Peterborough on his father's resignation,
and one of his daughters is the wife of Mr. Sandford Fleming.
Mr. Hall was re-married, his present wife being the daughter
of Fergus Ferguson, of Edinburgh, Scotland.
Donald Guthrie, Q. C, of Guelph, who for several years
represented South Wellington in the House of Commons, is a
native of Edinburgh. The date of his birth is May 8th,
1840. His father, Hugh Guthrie, was in business for many
years in the Scottish capital. Donald Guthrie came to
Canada when about fourteen years of age, and was articled
as a law student to Hon. Oliver Mowat. He completed his
legal education in the offices of Mr. John Helliwell, Tor-
onto, Hon. A. J. Fergusson-Blair and Mr. John J. Kingsmili,
Guelph.    He was admitted to practice as an attorney in 1170       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
1863, called to thenar in 1866,and created a Queen's Counsel in 1876.    Mr. Guthrie is a senior partner in the firm of
Guthrie, Watt & Cutten, of  Guelph, and has a brilliant
reputation  as  a forensic orator.    He is  Solicitor for the
County of Wellington and the City of Guelph,  and holds
other important and responsible positions.    In 1S76 he was
elected to Parliament for South Wellington, on the resignation of the sitting member, Mr. David Stirton, and in 1878,
which proved a year of disaster to many Reform representatives, was re-elected.    Mr. Guthrie  is  one  of the leading
citizens of Guelph.    His wife, to whom he was united in
1863, is a sister of Rev. Dr. D. H. Mac Vicar, Principal of the
Presbyterian College at Montreal.
Hon. Peter Gow, of Guelph, Sheriff of the County of Wellington, and formerly a member of the Ontario Ministry, is
a native of Johnstone, Renfrewshire, where he was born on
the 20th of November, 1818, being a son of John Gow, a
boot and shoe manufacturer. His mother's maiden name
was Agnes Ferguson, and she came from Argyllshire. He
assisted in his father's business until his departure for
Canada in 1842. After spending a couple of years in Brock -
ville, he came to Guelph, where he built a tannery and kept
a leather store. He continued this business until about the
year 1868. During this period he also built a woollen and
oatmeal mill, and engaged in other enterprises. Before
Guelph attained the dignity of a city, Mr. Gow took an active part in municipal affairs. In 1866, after a lengthened
period of service in the town council, he was elected Mayor,
an office which he filled with credit to himself and advantage to the citizens, who, on his retirement, showed their ap- THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.       lift
preciation of his labours in their behalf by presenting him
with a service of plate. He was the first representative of
South Wellington in the Ontario Parliament when it was
organized in 1867—and was re-elected by acclamation in
1871. When the administration of Hon. John Sandfield
Macdonald was overthrown in the same year, Mr. Gow entered the Cabinet organized by Mr. Blake, with the portfolio of Provincial Secretary. He did not remain long in
office,however, retiring with his chief in 1872, though he retained his seat until 1876, when he was appointed Sheriff of
Wellington County. Mr. Gow married, in 1857, Mary Maxwell Smith, of Kirkcudbrightshire, Scotland, and has a
family of nine sons and one daughter.
David Stirton, Postmaster of Guelph, was born in Forfarshire, Scotland, in 1816, his parents, James and Janet Stir-
ton, emigrating to Canada when David was about eleven
years of age.    The family settled in the bush about five
miles from the present city of Guelph.    At that time there
were no schools in the neighbourhood, so that, with the exception of the rudiments of instruction, which he had obtained before leaving Scotland, David Stirton's education
was entirely self-acquired.    He shared in all the labours of
*' roughing it" in the bush, and for forty-five years, as man
and boy, toiled as a farmer in the townships of Guelph
and Puslinch.    He was long connected with the municipal
affairs of the latter  township.    For  nineteen consecutive
years, ending with 1867, he represented South Wellington
in the old Canadian Parliament, and for nine  years  after
Confederation retained a seat in the House of Commons for
that constituency.    It is very seldom that any representa-
16
WhwsWw I
1
1172       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
tive of the people can show such a long-continued and unbroken term of service. Mr. Stirton retired from Parliamentary life in 1876, upon his appointment to the office of
Postmaster of Guelph. He has been twice married—in
1842 to Miss Mary Beattie of Puslinch, and in 1847' to Miss
Henrietta M'Gregor—having children by both marriages.
His brother, Mr- William Stirton was the first male child
born in Guelph.
Col. John Walker, of London, was b'orn in Argyleshire,
Scotland, in 1832. He was educated in Stirling, and had
been for several years engaged in business in Leith and
Glasgow, when, in 1864, his abilities attracted the attention
of a number of Scottish.capitalists, who were in want of an
agent to look after their interests at Bothwell, Canada
West, where they had purchased some oil lands and other
property from Hon. George Brown. Col. Walker soon found
that he had no easy task, as the petroleum excitement had
attracted to Bothwell a large number of adventurers, in-
eluding a lawless element, which required to be kept in
order. He received a special appointment as magistrate, and
his firmness and decision of character in that capacity were
of much service in checking the incipient tendency to disorder. In 1867 he took up his residence in London, and
entered upon extensive operations in the manufacture of
sulphuric acid and oil refining. He speedily became one of
the most prominent citizens, and acquired a great influence
in public affairs. He has been concerned in a great many
important commercial enterprises, and in various ways has
contributed to the progress and prosperity of the city with
which his interests are identified.    At the time of the Fen- THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.       1173
ian raid in 1866, Col. Walker raised a company of volunteers
in Bothwell, and afterwards in 1870, when danger was ao-ain
apprehended from this source, he was assigned to the command of the militia forces at Windsor, having in the meantime attained the rank of major in the 7th Battalion. In
1877 he was advanced to the rank of Colonel, and has since
commanded the battalion. Col. Walker is a member of the
Council of the Dominion Rifle Association, and one of the
vice-presidents of the Ontario Rifle Association. In 1874
Col. Walker received the nomination of the Reformers of
London for the House of Commons, his opponent being Hon.
John Carling. The contest, which was a very keen one,
resulted in Col. Walker's being returned, but the election
was controverted, and after a trial which created intense
interest throughout the country, he was unseated. He entered upon another contest in 1878, but Mr. Carling was
again successful. Col. Walker has been president of the
London Mechanics' Institute, and also of the St. Andrew's
Society.
Lieut.-Col. Alexander Allan Stevenson, of Montreal, was
born in the parish of Riccarton, Ayrshire, in January, 1829.
The family came to Canada in 1846, and he was apprenticed
to the printing trade in Montreal, serving the latter part of
his time in the Herald office. In partnership with two
others, he started the Sun newspaper in 1853. His venture
proved successful, the paper gaming a wide-spread popularity. Subsequently, he embarked in a general printing business, which he continued to conduct until the year 1879.
Early in his business career, Mr. Stevenson joined the Montreal Mechanics' Institute, of which he was for many years
«»
'■%%%%% 1174       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
a most active member, having at one  time  or other held
every office in the list.    He was connected with  the Board
of Arts and Manufactures for Lower Canada, which, after
Confederation, became the Council of Arts and Manufactures
for the Province of Quebec.    He has  held the position  of
President of the Council, and is at present Treasurer of the
Permanent.Exhibition Committee for Quebec, which is composed of members of the Council of Agriculture and Arts.
Mr.  Stevenson is, perhaps,  more generally known to  the
public in connection with military affairs than in any other
capacity.    In 1855 he assisted in organizing the celebrated
Montreal Field Battery of Artillery.    He was promoted to
a Lieutenancy in 1856, and in the same year succeeded to
the command, which position he has since retained.   In 1858
this corps had the honour of participating in the great military celebration held in New York in connection with the
laying of the first Atlantic  Cable.    The  Montreal Field
Battery is the only British military  organization that has
carried  the   Union   Jack   through   the   streets   of New
York   since   the    evacaution   of   the    British,    a    century   ago.    Col. Stevenson became a Free Mason in 1856,
holding various subordinate offices in the fraternity, until, in
1868, he attained the highest position it was in their power
to confer, being chosen Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of
Canada.   This office he held for three successive years.    He
was also appointed by the Prince of Wales, as head of the
Knights Templars, Knight Commander of the Temple.    He
was one of the founders of the Caledonian Society of Montreal, established in 1855, being chosen Secretary, and afterwards occupied the presidential chair for many years.   In THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.        1175
1870, Col. Stevenson formed one of a delegation from that
society to the convention in New York, which resulted in
the organization of the North American United Caledonia
Association, which exercises a continental jurisdiction over
affiliated clubs and societies. He was also an active member of the St. Andrew's Society of Montreal, of which he
was elected president in 1878. In this capacity he received
the Marquis of Lome and the Princess Louise at the St.
Andrew's ball held in their honour on their arrival in Canada.
He was elected to the City Council in 1861, serving for six
years, during part of which time he officiated as Acting
Mayor* In 1882 he was again chosen to a seat in the Council, where he has been of great service to the city. Colonel
Stevenson has taken an active part in politics on the Conservative side. In 1874, without his knowledge or consent,
he received the Conservative nomination, as a candidate for
the House of Commons, for the constituency of Montreal
West. His opponent was Mr. Frederick McKenzie, who
headed the poll on election day, though, on the petition of
Col. Stevenson, he was afterwards unseated on the ground
of bribery by agents. Col. Stevenson has been put in nomination as a representative on two other occasions, but in both
cases declined the honour.
Rev. Matthew Witherspoon Maclean, pastor of St. Andrew's
Church, Belleville, was born in Glasgow, on the 11th of June,
1842, and. completed his education at the University of that
city. While a divinity student, he visited Canada in 1862,
and decided to make this country the field of his labours.
He entered the Divinity Hall of Queen's College, Kingston,
where he studied two years, afterwards attending a session
TZZiifiZZZZ
wwmmmmMZ%iMM%MM 1176       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
of Princeton Theological Seminary, New Jersey, where he
graduated in 1866. Returning to Canada in that year, he
was licensed by the Presbytery of Niagara in connection
with the Church of Scotland. His first pastoral charge was
St. Andrew's Church, Paisley, in Bruce County. Here he
found abundant scope for his zeal and energy. The country
was newly settled, and the spiritual wants of the people had
been but inefficiently and irregularly supplied. Mr. Maclean
found himself the only pastor belonging to his denomination
within forty miles. His work extended over the large area
of five townships, and, in addition to daily pastoral visits, he
travelled, every Sabbath, from twenty to forty .miles, preaching three times a day. His Ghurch increased so rapidly
that it became necessary to provide additional accommodation for what had previously been a sparse and dwindling
congregation. Three mission-stations were organized at
different points in the neighbourhood. After five years of
persistent and effective labour in this place, Mr. Maclean accepted a call to the Mill Street Presbyterian Church at Port
Hope, where he remained for two years. In 1873 he went
to Belleville, where he became pastor of St. Andrew's Church,
which is the oldest Presbyterian Church in the city, and
comprises among its members and adherents a very large
proportion of the most substantial and cultivated people
of the city. Since his acceptance of the pastorate of St. Andrew's, Mr. Maclean filled the office of Clerk of the Presbytery of Kingston, in connection with the Church of Scotland,
up to the time of the union of the Presbyterian Churches of
the Dominion. Mr. Maclean is an able and scholarly preacher, and most zealous in the discharge of the various duties of THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.       1177
his high office. He is also highly successful as a platform
speaker, uniting elaboration of thought with fluency and
grace of expression.
George Ralph Richardson Cockburn, for upwards of
twenty years Principal of Upper Canada College, is a native
of Edinburgh, his natal day being the 15 th of February,
1834. He was educated at the Edinburgh.High School and
University, and at his graduation in 1857 took the Stratton
Prize. He subsequently prosecuted his classical studies in
Germany and France. In 1858 he commenced his Canadian
career, having been appointed by the Council of Public Instruction to the Rectorship of the Model Grammar School
for Upper Canada. He was shortly afterwards commissioned by the Government to inspect the higher educational
institutions of the Province. The results of this investigation, which extended over a period of two years, were given
to the public in two comprehensive reports, in which the
condition and needs of higher education were elaborately
set forth. Mr. Cockburn then visited a number of the principal institutions of learning in the United States in order
to familiarize himself thoroughly with their methods. In
1861 the Government appointed him Principal of Upper
Canada College and a member of the Senate of Toronto
University. He has had a long and successful career as an
instructor of youth, and under his able management Upper
Canada College has obtained a high reputation both for the
thoroughness of its teaching and the excellent moral influ-
ences prevailing within its walls. There are few men who
have done more for the cause of Canadian education than
Principal Cockburn.    The celebrated Dr. Schmitz of Edin- 1178       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
burgh said of him, that he was no ordinary scholar, but a
thorough philologist, possessing a good insight into the
structure, the relations and affinities subsisting between the
ancient and modern languages of Europe, and also characterized him as one of the best Latin scholars that Scotland has
produced.
Judge Henry Macpherson, of Owen Sound, is a son of
Lowther P. Macpherson, barrister, and grandson of Lieut.-
Col. Donald Macpherson, who commanded the fort at Kingston in the beginning of the war of 1812, being afterwards
removed to Quebec. Donald Macpherson was the son of
Evan Macpherson of Ciuny, the chief of the clan Macpherson, who took part in the rising in favour of Prince Charles
in 1745. Henry Macpherson was born at Picton, Prince
Edward County, in 1832, his mother being a daughter of
Lieut.-Col. Allan McLean, of Kingston, for sixteen years
Speaker of the old Canadian Assembly. He was educated
at Kingston Grammar School and Queen's College, graduating from the latter institution in 1851. He studied law
with Mr Thomas Kirkpatrick, of the same city, and was
admitted as an attorney in 1854 and called to the bar the
following year. Mr. Macpherson practised his profession at
Owen Sound for about ten years, and in 1865 was made
Judge of the County Court of the County of Grey. In 1879
he received the additional appointment of Surrogate Judge
of the Maritime Court. Judge Macpherson is a leading-
Freemason, and has held several important positions in the
Order. He is Past Senior Grand Warden of the Grand
Lodge of Canada. He takes a heartfelt interest in local
enterprises, and has identified himself with many organiza- THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.       1L79>
tions of a practical as well as a social character. He was
united in marriage in May 1875 to Miss Eliza M. McLean,
daughter of Allan N. McLean, of Toronto.
Sir Alexander Campbell, though of English birth-is of
Scottish descent. He was born in 1821 in the neighbour-
hood of Kingston-upon-Hull, Yorkshire, his father being Dr.
James Campbell. His parents came to Canada when he was
very young, first settling in Lachine, and afterwards removing to Kingston, where young Campbell completed his educa-
cation at the Royal Grammar School. He then turned his
attention to the study of the law under Mr. Henry Cassidyr
a leading Kingston practitioner, and upon his death, which
occurred in 1839, entered the office of Mr. John A. Macdonald.
He was admitted to practice in 1842, when he was taken
into partnership by Mr. Macdonald, which continued for many
years. In 1843 he was called to the bar. Mr. Campbell
now entered upon a very successful and profitable course,
the firm receiving a very large practice. The beginning of
his distinguished public career was his election as an alderman in 1851. He served in this capacity for two years. In
1856 he was created a Queen's Counsel. The Legislative
Council having been made elective, Mr. Campbell, in 1858r
came forward as the Conservative candidate for the Catara-
qui Division and obtained the seat by a handsome majority.
He speedily attained a leading position in Parliament by his
ability and tact, and in 1863 was elected Speaker of the
Council for the remainder of the Parliamentary term. He
was now regarded as one of the foremost men in public life,,
and during the ministerial crisis of March, 1864 was sent for
by the Governor-General and requested to organize a cabinet.
^mzzzzzzizzzzzi 1180       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
He did not feel sure enough of his position to accept the responsibilities of leadership, but took the Commissionership
•of Crown Lands in the Tache'-Macdonald administration.
"This cabinet fell to pieces before long, but Mr. Campbell retained hi3 port-folio in that which succeeded it. When the
^Confederation scheme came up for consideration Mr. Campbell strenuously supported it. He was a member of the
Union Conference which met in Quebec, in 1864, and during
the parliamentary discussion of the subject was its foremost
advocate in the Upper Chamber. One of the happiest and
most forcible utterances of Mr. Campbell's career is the
notable speech which he delivered on the 17th of February,
1865, in reply to the antagonists of Confederation. Upon the
organization of the Senate in 1867, Mr. Campbell was nominated as one of the members, and has since been the leader
of the Conservative party in that body. He took office as
Postmaster-General in the first ministry organized after Confederation and retained that position for about six 3Tears.
In 1870 he went to England in connection with the negoti-
ations which resulted in the Treaty of Washington. In 1873
he became Minister of the Interior, a post which he did not
retain long, as in November of the same year the government of which he was a member was driven from office on
account of the Pacific Scandal revelations. Mr. Campbell
was leader of the Opposition in the Senate during Mr. Mackenzie's five years tenure of office, and upon the return of
the Conservatives to power in 1878 became Reeeiver-Gen-
oral, a position which he exchanged for his old port-folio as
Postmaster-General the year following. In May 1879, he
was created a Knight of the order of St. Michael and St. THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.        1181
George. He was appointed Minister of Militia in 1880, but
a readjustment of offices, which took place in November of
that year, restored him to the head of the Post Office Department. Sir- Alexander Campbell is a hardworking and useful public official, and an influential party leader. He is not
brilliant or eloquent but eminently clear-headed, sound and
far-seeing. The unvarying moderation and courtesy of his
speeches have done much to elevate the tone of public discussion. In 1855 he married Miss Georgina Frederica Locke,
daughter of Mr. Thomas Sandwith, of Beverley, England.
Another Senator of English birth and Scottish blood is
Hon. James Skead, who was born on the 31st of January,
1816, in Cumberland—his father William Skead being a
Scot. James was about ten years of age when his father
emigrated. He remained on a farm near Montreal for some
years, and afterwards removed to Ottawa. James Skead
grew up with very few educational advantages, and is almost
entirely self-instructed. He engaged in lumbering in 1840'
and for thirty years had a course of almost uninterrupted
prosperity, though more recently he sustained some reverses
In 1862 Mr. Skead was elected as a representative of Rideau
Division to the Legislative Council, and retained that position until Confederation, when he was called to the Senate.
He contested Carleton unsuccessfully for the Local Legislature in 1867. He was chosen President of the Conservative
Convention which met in Toronto in 1874. Among the
public and commercial positions which he has held are those
of President of the Dominion Board of Trade, of the Ottawa
Board of Trade, of the Ottawa Liberal Conservative Association and of the Agricultural and Arts Association of On- hi I
1182       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA
tario. He is largely interested in a number of commercial
and railway enterprises and has done a great deal in various
directions to promote the progress and welfare of the locality
where his wealth has been acquired. He married in 1842
Miss Rosanna McKay, a native of the North of Ireland,
. and has a large family.
Allan Macdonell was born in Toronto, about the year
1810, and was admitted to the bar in 1832, having studied
law in the office of Mr. H. J. Boulton, then Attorney General. In the following year he entered into partnership
with the late Sir Allan N. Macnab. Shortly previous to
the rebellion of 1837, he was appointed to the shrievalty
of the Gore District. When the outbreak occurred, Sheriff
Macdonell raised a troop of cavalry, arming and equipping
them at his own expense an outlay for which he was never reimbursed. This corps originally enrolled for six months, remained in service for a considerably longer period. Mr. Macdonell resigned the Gore shrievalty, after holding the position for about five years. In the winter of 1846, he obtained from the Government a license for exploring the shore of
Lake Superior for mines, and with the aid of friends fitted
out a prospecting expedition. At that time, Lake Superior
was but little known. There were neither steamers nor
sailing vessels upon its waters and the only available mode
of transit was by canoe or open boat. The expedition consisting of eleven men with the necessary provisions and
equipments, and an open boat of good size started early in
the spring of 1847. They experienced a good deal of difficulty in obtaining guides and voyageurs, as the Hudson Bay
Company claimed the exclusive control of the Lake Superior THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.       1183
region.   Mr. Macdonell was told that he must report the expedition  at the Hudson Bay forts along the coast,  but he
refused to do this, and his enterprise was regarded with a
good deal of jealousy by the Company.    He  was followed
by another party of mining prospectors headed   by Mr.
Shephard, who represented the interests  of a number of
Montreal investors.    The latter body afterwards  organized
as the Montreal Company, were on a friendly- footing with
the Hudson Bay Company, and had the advantage of their
assistance in the  enterprise.    Mr. Macdonell, continued his
explorations with good success until  November,  when he
proceeded to Montreal and reported his discoveries to the
Government.    The result of his expedition was the formation of the Quebec Company, in which he merged his interest in the locations secured.    Mining operations were carried on  successfully for several years.    A good deal of difficulty was experienced, owing to the disregard of the rights
. of the Indians to the soil.    In selling the lands  occupied by
the Quebec Company, which were then in the occupation of
the   Aborigines, the Government altogether overlooked the
claims of the Indians for compensation.    The matter was
repeatedly brought to their attention    Deputations  of the
Chiefs of the band were sent to the seat of  Government to
urge their claims.    Mr. Macdonell, who was  impressed with
the necessity of dealing justly with the Indians, accompanied them on two occasions. The Chiefs had an interview with
Lord Elgin, and one of them plainly told  him that unless
their rights were recognised and compensation awarded them
they would drive the miners from their lands.    Lord Elgin
promised that a treaty  should be made with them under :l!
1184       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
which their interests would be  secured.    Mr. Macdonell,
subsequently had two or three interviews with Hon. Robert
Baldwin, the then Premier,  who authorized him to  assure
the Indians that they should have every justice, and  that
commissioners would be sent without  delay to negotiate a
treaty.    This was done shortly afterwards, but owing to the
incompetency  of the  commissioners  appointed, no  understanding was arrived at.    The result  was that the  Indians
put their threat into execution and resumed possession of
their property, closing the mines and driving off the workmen to the number of about 150, without, however, doing any
injury either to persons or property. In this course they were
supported by Mr. Macdonell, who felt that in no  other way
could they obtain their rights.    A military expedition was
sent up to the mines to restore order, and Mr. Macdonell
and two of the Indian chiefs were arrested and brought to
Toronto.    On being taken before the Chief Justice under a
writ of Habeas Corpus, they were at once released, and the
sum ©f $400 was paid the Indians as  compensation.    The
question of the Indian title to the lands  was finally settled
in 1850, when the Government appointed Hon. William B.
Robinson to negotiate a treaty under which the Indians received $20,000 down and a further annual payment of $4,000
to be increased in proportion to the sales of land, in return
for the surrender of their title to all the  region  extending
Northward from Lake Superior to the height of land.
Mr. Macdonell continued for several years lono-er con-
nected with mining and other interests in the Lake Superior
region. In 1850 he projected the construction of a canal
around the Sault Ste. Marie on the Canadian side, and had THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.       1185-
th e requisite surveys and estimates prepared, and a company formed to undertake the work.    The charter was refused by the Government, however, being opposed by the-
Lower Canadians.    The want was supplied a year or two
later by the construction of a canal on the American side of
the Sault.    Mr. Macdonell afterwards applied to Parliament
for- a charter  authorizing  the construction  of a railway
westward  from the head of Lake Superior to the Pacific
Ocean.    In his explorations of the country lying west of
the Lake, he had acquired from Indians and voyageurs whom
he met a good knowledge of the country and its capabilities,
and at that early date published a series of letters in the
Toronto newspapers  advocating the scheme  of a  Pacific
Railway.    The application to Parliament was not successful,,
as the Railway Committee threw out the bill on the ground
that it was premature.    Mr. Macdonell, however, continued
to devote himself to the object of opening up communication with the North West, and in 1858 procured from Parliament the charter of the North West Transit Company,,
conferring upon them very extensive powers including railroad and canal construction, and the improvement of water
courses in any portion of Canada, west of Lake Superior, or
north of that Lake or Lake Huron.    Sir Allan Macnab was
at one time President, and Mr. John Beverley Robinson, Secretary of the company, which, however, did not prove a successful institution, and after some years ceased to  exist.
Mr. Macdonell is now a resident of Toronto.
The name of Mrs. Moodie is well-known, both to Canadian and to English readers in connection with her descriptive writings—Roughing it in the Bush, a book depicting 1186       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
the difficulties of a settler's life half a century ago is the
most popular of her books. Mrs. Moodie is English by
birth and parentage, being a member of the celebrated
Strickland family. Her husband, Mr. J. W. Dunbar Moodie,
was of ancient Orcadian stock. The name was originally
spelled Mudie, and is of Scandinavian origin; being derived from the old Norwegian Earls of Orkney. His great
grandfather, Captain James Moodie of the Royal Navy, was
a distinguished officer who rendered important services to
his country in Spain where he succeeded in relieving the
town of Denia when it was closely besieged by the French.
He was selected by the government after the death of Queen
Anne to convey her successor, King George I., to England,
and was murdered in the streets of Kirkwall, Orkney, in
1725, at the age of eighty, by Sir James Stewart, an adherent of the Pretender.
The murderer was afterwards brought to justice through
the mstru mentality of the son of his victim, who was only
nine years of age when his father was killed; but determined to revenge his death, and many years afterwards
delivered the assassin who had again taken up arms for the
Pretender over to the authorities. Sir James, however,
committed suicide in the Tower. J. W. Dunbar Moodie was
the fourth son of Major James Moodie of Melsetter, in the
Orkney Islands, where he was born on the 7th October, 1797.
He entered the army as second Lieutenant of the R. N. B.
Fusiliers or 21st Regiment of foot in 1813, when about
sixteen years of age. He had an early experience of the
horrors of war, being engaged in the night attack at Bergen-
op-zoom on the 8th of March, 1814, when after entering THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.        1187
the works with a small party of soldiers in the midst of
darkness and confusion he succeeded in forcing open one of
the gates and lowering the drawbridge. On this occasion he
sustained a severe wound in the left wrist from a musket
ball which disabled his hand and arm. He shortly afterwards retired from the service on half-pay. In 1819
Mr. Moodie joined his elder brother Benjamin who had
emigrated to South Africa, and remained in that country about ten years. On his return to England in 1829,
he met at the house of a friend in London, Susanna
Strickland, whom he shortly afterwards married. Mrs.
Moodie is the daughter of Thomas Strickland, of Rey-
don Hall, near South wold in Suffolk, several of whose
family became widely known as popular writers. Miss
Agnes Strickland, an elder sister of Mrs. Moodie's, published a large number of poetical, fictitious and historical works, the most extensive and best known of which
is her Lives of the Queens of England. Some years
previous to her marriage with Mr. Moodie, Susanna
Strickland had united with her sister Agnes in the publication of a volume of Patriotic Songs and had writ-
fen several other books. In 1832, Mr. Moodie emigrated to
Canada West and took up land as a half-pay officer, in the
Township of Douro, near Peterborough. The experience of
the family, like that of very many others whose previous
training has not been such as to fit them to encounter
the hardships or endure with equanimity the rough associations and coarse surroundings of backwoods life,
was extremely disheartening. The story of their struggles to   gain a livelihood upon   a  bush   farm for seven
17 1188       THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.
years is graphically told in Mrs. Moodie's work entitled
Roughivg it in the Bush, which won for its talented
authoress a wide spread reputation. The book is a narrative of plain facts set forth in a telling, vivacious style,
and while it does not in any way belittle the real advantages presented by Canada as a field for emigrants accustomed to hard manual labour, emphasizes a truth that
it is well should be known and heeded by intending emigrants, namely, that persons delicately reared, accustomed to
a life of luxury, and dependent upon the services of others
in the household, do not as a rule succeed in obtaining either
pleasure or profit from a farmer's life in Canada. Of course
the circumstances have vastly altered since Mrs. Moodie's
book was written, and many of the hardships to which the
Moodies were subjected are now greatly mitigated even on the
outskirts of civilization, but the experience of thousands of
later emigrants goes to confirm their experience that the inbred instincts and long established habits, such as fit a man
for a professional career in England, do not impart the
qualifications needed for a practical farmer in Canada. It
would have been better both for the country and for those
who have made the mistake of attempting a mode of living
for which they were in no respect adapted, had this been
more generally understood in Britain.
On the breaking out of the rebellion in 1837, Mr. Moodie
immediately offered his services to the Government, and
served for several months during the winter of that year in
the Provincial Militia at Toronto, and afterwards on the
Niagara frontier holding the rank of Captain in the Queen's
Own Regiment,    In the fall cf 1838 he was appointed cap- THE SCOT IN BRITISH NORTH AMERICA.       1189
tain and pay-master to sixteen companies of militia distributed along the shores of Lake Ontario and the Bay of Quinte.
In November, 1839, he was appointed by Sir George Arthur
to the shrievalty of the District of Victoria, now the county
of Hastings. This position he held until 1863, when he resigned. Colonel Moodie had decided literary tastes, and published several volumes principally relating to his travels
and adventures. Ten Years in South Africa was issued
in England in 1835, favourably received by the press and
public, and in 1866 a book from his pen entitled Scenes
■and Adventures as a Soldier and Settler, including a num-
ber of miscellaneous sketches some of which had previously
appeared in serial form was published in Montreal. Col.
Moodie's death o