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Speech of Hon. A. W. McLelan on the second reading of a bill to incorporate the Pacific Railway Company.… McLelan, A. W. (Archibald Woodbury), 1824-1890 1881

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Reported by  GEO. C. HOLLAND  SPEECH
Reported by A. & GEO. C. HOLLAND, Senate Reporters.
-*-^-m> •
On Wednesday & Thursday, Feb 9 & 10, 1881.
Hon. Mr. McLELAN resumed the
debate on the Pacific Railway Bill. He
said: It is an ill wind indeed that
blows no good. The weak little hurricane that has been raging round this
building —that has been howling through
public halls, as the moaning of vexed
spirits, ever since the opening of Parliament — has not been an unmixed evil.
It has brought a new experience, a new
sensation, pleasant indeed and the better
relished because of its great rarity. We
have positively had gentlemen — who
form and lead the Opposition in Parliament and in the country — lauding their
own country. We have actually had them
„praising our territory, its soil and the
Kpxtent of our resources, and speaking in glowing terms of the great
future that awaits this Dominion. They
have — like all new and sudden converts
— gone a little beyond the line ; they
have been too glowing in their descriptions of the value of these possessions,
aud of that great future; but it is infinitely better that they should over-step in
this line ; it is a thousand times better to
over color the picture a little than that
their speeches should form, as they have
in the past, the chief certificates to the
value of the lands in Dacotah, Texas,
and Kansas, and their portraits be found
adorning the advertisements issued by
the railway companies seeking to dispose of those lands. If I may use the
term applied by the ex-Secretary of State
to his own speech, we have had, also, in the
" feeble," dying murmur of the breeze, a
pleasant surprise. The hon. gentleman
was kind enough to say to us that, in the
year in which the Bill introduced and
advocated by him for the construction of
the Esquimalt and Nanaimo Railway
was thrown out by this Senate, the Senate did right. The Senate itself considers that it always does right. The trouble
is that the hon. gentleman is always a
few years behind that right; he places
himself in opposition to the majority of
the Senate for the time being, but in the
course of two or three years comes to
admit that the Senate was right. On
more than one occasion has this occurred.
What a pity he could not overtake and
live up to the spirit of right which prevails in this body! Why, hon. gentlemen, when he now asks you to throw out
this   Bill,  the experience  of   the   past r
is that, if you do not now take his
advice, he will, in a few years, thank
you for refusing his counsel of to-day.
In 1875 he asked you to pass the Esqui-
malt Bill; you threw it out, and you
saved $200,000 a year at least to this
country. Now he says you did right on
that sccasion. He asks you to-day to
throw out this Bill, and, as a logical
consequence, you should go in direct opposition to the counsel which the hon.
gentleman gives you. But I have said
that the spirit of right has always prevailed in this Senate since my acquaintance has been formed with it. During
the five years that the hon. gentleman
and his associates ruled this country, a
large majority of this body was opposed
to the policy of that Government.
We maintained that we were right.
They went to the elections and the country confirmed the right. The country
declared that these gentlemen were no
longer fit to be entrusted with the management of the affairs of this young and
growing Dominion ; and they passed it
over to other hands, and appointed them
Her Majesty's constitutional Opposition
in Parliament. It was supposed that
with five years of official training they
would have been fitted to have exercised
the duties of the position, and to have
given that wholesome criticism to the
acts of any administration which would
tend to the public security. But, hon.
gentlemen, the country has been disappointed ; its just expectation has not
been met. My hon. friend from Char-
lottetown was good enough the other
night to read to us, from the memoirs of
Napoleon I, his saying that " an error
steadily adhered to becomes a virtue in
the eyes of posterity." Long ago did the
hon. gentleman and his party read and
adopt this saying, with the slight misinterpretation that they must be always in
error, always wrong, to secure the approval of posterity; and, striving to win
posthumous fame, they pursue the wrong,
and on this great question they do wrong,
not only to the country, but to themselves. They have doubled on their
track, gone back on their own record.
African hunters tell us that, when the
ostrich becomes weak and exhausted, it
doubles and turns backward, but, growing
weaker at every step, finally buries its
head in the sand, to fall readily into the
hands of the hunter. So those hon.
gentlemen, in their blind weakness, have doubled on their course,
and, growing weaker at every step, finally, tottering and feeble, stick their heads
into American soil at Sault Ste. Marie,
to fall helplessly into the hands
of the American Northern Pacific
Railway Company. We had hoped,
looking back upon the history of
this great question, for a different course.
I do not propose to refer to this history
in its details, but there are certain points
that stand out prominently, clear, and well
defined, marking the course of that history, just as the higher mountain peaks
mark the line of that rocky ridge which,,
crowns this continent, and separates us
from British Columbia, through which
the proposition is to construct this great
highway. We have first, the point that
all the public men of this Dominion, upon the acquisition of the North-West
Territories and the Union with British
Columbia, were agreed that the railway
was essential to the security, safety and
prosperity of the whole Dominion. The
next point: Parliament declared that that
great work should be undertaken by a
company subsidized by land and by cash,
and passed an act placing power in the
hands of the Government to undertake
the work upon that condition and authorizing a subsidy of thirty millions in cash
and fifty million acres of land. We come
next to the point that a company engaged
to do that work. A contract was made-
with Sir Hugh Allan, and his associates.
They deposited $1,000,000 as security.
They went to Europe to secure the capital necessary to accomplish so great an
undertaking; but they had not proper
connections made abroad, they had not
the influence abroad that would enable
them to float their bonds, or in any way
secure the requisite cash, and they returned unsuccessful and surrendered
their charter. The nest point we come
to is the change of Government that
followed this, when the incoming Government, led by Mr. Mackenzie, declared
that the work should be carried on as a
Government work, that the Dominion might have the profits of construction. On the meeting of Parliament
they increased the taxation three millions
for the purpose of meeting the obligation,
of the country to construct this and other- public works ; they also at the same se -
sion passed an Act taking power to construct the road themselves or give it to a
company, in whole or in part. The preamble to that Bill has these words :—
« " And whereas the House of Commons of
jf Canada resolved in the session of 1871 that the
said railway should be constructed and worked
by private enterprise, and not by the Dominion;
"And whereas, by the legislation of this
present session, in order to provide means of
meeting the obligations of the Dominion, the
rate of taxation has been raised much beyond
that existing at the date of the said resolution;
" And whereas it is proper to make provision
for the construction of said work as rapidly as
the same can be accomplished without further
increasing the rate of taxation;
"Therefore, Her Majesty, by and with the
advice and consent of the Senate and House of
Commons, enacts as follows:—
"1st. A railway to be called the Canadian
Pacific Railway shall be made from some point
near to and south of Lake Nipissing to some
point in British Columbia on the Pacific
Then they go on by their Act to provide
for the construction by Government or
by a company, or  contractors  for  sec-
P tions, to be subsidized by $10,000 cash,
20,000 acres of land, and such further sum as may be agreed upon.
If this Act means anything, if those men
were not performing a solemn farce — a
hollow cheatery of the country — they
had determined on the building of the
Canadian Pacific Railway through and
unbroken. In the following year, in the
contract with Mr. Foster, they repeat
the declaration that the railway shall
be built from Nipissing to the Pacific
Ocean, twice solemnly placing on record
their determination to do it. Having
declared their intention, they immediately
proceeded to the work, or more properly,
to the expenditure of money. They
purchased rails to the amount of several
millions   of dollars,   they  let  contracts
Wj from Fort William running westward,
they knew not whither ; found they were
wrong and changed the location. The
Senator from Hamilton waxed unusually
eloquent on what he was pleased to
term the wonderful statesmanship of Mr.
Mackenzie, in providing a great gateway to the North-West from Lake
Superior. The members of the late
Government will be gratified to learn
that   one man, at least,  regards  their
efforts as statesmanship. We are all
familiar with the style, form and architecture of what the hon. gentleman is
pleased to term a gateway : that mongrel
system long since abandoned whenever
possible, of mixed land and water, a route
broken by eight or nine portages. We
have had in this Chamber hon. gentlemen make it a subject of grave
charge and inquiry that delays of a few
hours by stress of weather or accident
had occurred on the Government road
(Intercolonial), but, on this journey it
would be the delay of nearly a lifetime
in getting oyer the numerous portages,
and round the many falls on Rainy
River, and. then all frozen in winter.
The mariner sings of his home on the
deep, but here the song would be : —
A life on the Eainy River wave
A home on the rocky roaring shoals,
Where the cautious Captains rave
And the pious pilots bless our souls.
Commencing inland six miles from Prince
Arthur's landing, they put under contract two sections of railway running
114 miles into the wilderness ; thence
skipping 185 miles, they let two other
sections of 114 miles to Selkirk on Red
River. They placed the grading of
Pembina Branch 63 miles, subsidized
Georgian Bay Branch and Canada Central ; erected telegraph lines over muskegs
in winter, that could scarcely be reached
in summer, and, to crown all, they had
men employed at Fort Francis for four
or five years digging a hole ; these woiks
involving an expenditure and liabilities
amounting to upwards of $20,000,000.
In the meantime British Columbia became restless, and in addition to having
placed it in an Act of Parliament that
they would build the road from Lake
Nippissing to the Pacific Ocean, they
solemnly engaged with the British Government that they would build a railway
on Vancouver Island at an expense of
from $3,000,000 to $4,000,000.
Hon. Mr. MACDONALD — $2,000,-
Hon. Mr. McLELAN — I de not
think the hon. gentleman will find anyone
acquainted with the cost of constructing
railways who will put it down at less than
$3,000,000 to $4,000,000.
Hon. Mr. MACDONALD — It was
$30,000 per mile Jbr a road 70 miles
long. Hon. Mr. McLELAN — They engaged
to build that road, cost whatever it might,
and to expend at least $2,000,000 a year
in British Columbia. Then next we
come to 1877, when the Government,
finding the entanglement in which they
were involved, and becoming disgusted
with the profits of constructing the road
themselves, announced to the country
that they would seek a company to build
it according to the terms and for the subsidies named in the Act of 1874. They
prepared plans and issued advertisements,
calling upon contractors to tender for the
work and to say for how much, in addition
to 20,000 acres of land and $10,000
per mile, they would undertake the work.
In addition to this, they sent Mr. Sand-
ford Fleming, the ablest man in their
employ, to Europe to, if possible, interest
capitalists in the work ; but all without
success. This, brings us to another prominent point, the elections of 1878 —the
Yellow Head Pass, the turning-point in
the history of the Canadian Pacific Railway — when the management of this and
of all other affairs of the country were
taken out of the hands of those gentle
men, and placed in the hands of the men
who now rule the Dominion, the men
who, from the very inception of this work,
were of the opinion that it should be
constructed by a company, subsidized by
the lands of the North-West, and by a
small sum in cash. It may be supposed,
and it has been claimed by some gentlemen who have spoken on this question,
that the members of the present Government, when they came into office, had
changed their opinions, and said it must
be constructed as a Government work. I
do not, for a moment, admit that there is
anything in their administration to warrant such a conclusion. I am sure I am
right in saying that, from the beginning
to the end, through good report and evil
report, they held to the opinion that this
work must be constructed by a company,
and that the lands of the North-West
should be utilized to meet the cost of that
construction. When they came into office,
it was no time to talk of a company; it
was no time to talk of a company when
they received the heritage of confusion
which had been bequeathed to ihem by
their predecessors. Their first great
duty was to take up the tangled skein
and unravel it, and bring order and sys
tem out of that which was only confusion. Let me for a moment glance at
that heritage of confusion which they
found. Why, the late Government had
baea expending money by the millions at
every point of the compass, almost.
They had been expending money upon
the road from Lake Superior westward
114m iles; they had been expending money
from Selkirk eastward 114 miles; then at
right angles from the line of connection
of those sections 100 miles south, they
had expended hundreds of thousands;
they had the Pembina Branch partially
graded for two years, but not a rail laid
upon it, although there were thousands
of tons of rails scattered over almost
every section of Eastern British America, to be eaten away by rust, and 5,000
tons in British Columbia undergoing the
same process, whilst the sections in British Columbia were only advertised a few
months before the election. They had
away north fifty or sixty miles of railway to Cantfin's Bay, involving a cost
of one a half millions, whilst as much
more was required to make the French
River navigable. They had the telegraph
line under construction. All involving
an expenditure of nearly $20,000,000
$12,444,000 of which was actually paid
out at the close of the year in which they
left office. But there was more
than this. The hon. the ex-Secretary
of State told us the other day that the
North-West, up to that period, had cost
say $9,000,000 or $10,000,000 in the
purchase and organization,and in the payment of Indian subsidies,and the mounted
police, one way or another, at the time
they left office. And so it had, and still
annually the expenditure was $1,000,-
000. With $12,500,000' paid out on the
Canadian Pacific Railway, and this
enormous expenditure annually going on
in the North-West, with $12,400,000
cash actually paid out on the Canadian
Pacific Railway, with ten millions expended in the organization and protection
of the territory, with contracts existing
involving additional millions, it was no
time to stop had the proposition ever
presented itself to them. Whatever
opinions might have existed in the outset, it had now become imperative to go
forward and make as much of the enormous expenditure of value as possible.
If there ever was a time to turn back it was before this expenditure and before
the Carnarvon terms. When the Mackenzie Government took office, no contracts had been made, no expenditure beyond a little over a million dollars on
exploratory surveys; but, on the change
of Government, it was far different ; the duty of the' hour was
to take up this heritage of confusion,
bring it to order, and see how far it was
possible to make the millions expended,
and the lands that were lying there, profitable to the whole Dominion. The hon.
gentlemen who administer the Government of this country did not shrink from
that duty. They had firm faith in the
value of that territory, and they had
firm faith in their own ability to develop
that value. The first act was to connect
the two broken sections of railway between Lake Superior and the Red River,
and they placed under contract 185 miles
so as to make an unbroken railway, at
least in summer, from Lake Superior to
Red River. They stopped work at Fort
Francis ; they cancelled the contract at
Cantin's Bay; they urged forward the
completion of the Pembina Branch that
we might have ready access to that territory even by connection with American
lines, and by the 31st December the rails
were laid upon the entire branch. Having
done this, the next great point was to
create a public sentiment in favor of that
work and that territory lying north-west
of us. They invited the tenant farmers
of England to send proper delegates to
examine that country, and to report
upon it. The invitation was accepted ;
the delegates came, and returned pleased
with the country they had seen, and
their visit was attended by the happiest
results. But there were other classes in
Britain and Europe—where we looked for
the money to construct this work and the
people to fill the vast territory — whom
it was of the highest importance to reach
and favorably impress : the moneyed and
official classes. The right hon. gentleman who leads the Government, with
one or two of his associates, visited England, and, having a marvellous adaptation to the work they had undertaken,
the result was almost magical upon the
public sentiment of that country, upon all
classes, from the noble old lord, who
then, as Premier of England, stood next
in authority to the Queen who sits upon
a throne mightiest among the nations?.
down to the humblest tenant farmer
seeking to own broad acres for his own
hands to till and his own children to
inherit. All, from Lord Beaconsfield
down to the humblest cotter whose
children cry for bread, were given to
know that here in " this Canada of ours,"
we have countless acres of soil rich as hand
of man ever strewed with seed for grain, or
planted with flowers for beauty ; enough
and more to give happy and prosperous
homes to the millions when they come to
us, and who, we believe, under the proposition of this Bill, will be brought to
us, to find those homes. This was a
great point gained. This was laying
deep and broad the foundation for future
action. The delegates returned to this
country. They met Parliament, and, to
further impress upon the world the vast-
ness of this territory and the value of it,
they asked Parliament to appropriate to
this undertaking 100,000,000 acres of
land ; and, to express, if possible, more
clearly and strongly their faith in the
undertaking, they placed under contract
127 miles of the road in British Columbia, and 100 miles of the prairie section.
Then they felt that the time for further-
action had come. The time had come to
seek for a company to undertake the
construction of this great work of building the 2,000 miles of additional railway
and the working of the whole so as to
make unbroken rail from ocean to ocean.
It may be said that they should have
given public notice of their intention to
seek a company. Hon. gentlemen know
that the men who deal in such mighty
undertakings as this are few and far between. They are not men who seek for
their work in the cornel's of country
newspapers. It might have been advertised in every newspaper in the Dominion for years, as Mr. Mackenzie had
advertised it, without a response. The
men who deal in those undertakings
have them brought to them, presented and advocated, and they pass their
opinion upon them. It is becoming
the custom of the world to do business
in this way. When towns and municipalities want anything done by the Government, they do not write or advertise,
but send a delegate to present their case.
So manufacturers and other producers,
either by themselves or through agents, 8
visit those who are likely to purchase or
consume what they produce, and we have
commercial travellers throughout the
Dominion seeking and finding customers.
The late Government tried the commercial agent plan. They kept Mr. Fleming
in England and Europe a large part of
1878, endeavoring to influence capitalists
to undertake the work, but without success — not from want of ability on his
part, because there was no man in their
employ better fitted for the task, but
he failed because of the coadition
cf the work and of the men who
were behind him ; men who had not
hesitated to magnify the obstacles in the
way of constructing that work; men
who had placed on record the statement
that not all the resources of the British
empire would be equal to building it in
ten years; men who, here, upon the
hustings in Ottawa, declared that all the
Chinamen in China could not complete
it in ten years, and that it would
take forty years, with all the
appliances that could be brought
to bear upon it, to accomplish the undertaking; men who did not hesitate to
belittle their own country, and to magnify
that which lies across the border ; men
who praised the lands of Texas and Kansas with all the zeal of paid hirelings of
the colonization roads of those States. Is
it to be wondered at that they were unsuccessful ? But the men who went from
this Government to that task weat in a
-different spirit, and reached a very different result, and that result is now presented to us in the Bill before the House.
When I look at the proposition which is
made to us to have 2,000 miles of railway
constructed, 712 equipped, amd the whole
line run and worked; when I think
that we are securing all this for $25,-
000,000 in cash, distributed over ten
years, two and a-half millions a year, or,
as Sir Richard Cartwright admits, equal
to, as cash down, from 18 to 19 millions,
and a little of our spare land, I feel,
•as some hon. gentlemen have said, more
like offering nay congratulations than
•offering arguments to sustain the Bill.
When I think of the past ten years, and
the doubt, anxiety and apprehension
which forced themselves upon men's
minds regarding the cost of this mighty
undertaking ; when no man knew, in the
-accidents of  political   life,  into  whose
feeble hands the management might
again fall, and where we might be driven
by it; when I recall the five years in which
we drifted helplessly towards destruction upon a leeshore, with the cold hungry
rocks of annual deficits baring all about
the ship of State, and she manned by a
crew who could or would do nothing but
throw out signals of distress ; and, now,
when I see that ship under other management, and another crew, brought away
from the breakers and reefs of annual
deficits; when I see her brought out
from the mists and fog banks and into
the clear water and blue sky, where we
can ascertain our reckonings, and find out
our exact financial latitude and longitude
and know where we are, I think the
country should be congratulated, and the
men, who, by clearheaded statesmanship,
patriotism and indomitable perseverance have brought about this result,
deserve the thanks of the people. Had
any company come to Mr. Mackenzie's
Government when they were throwing
out signals of distress, when their
Finance Minister was declaring that he
had exhausted every means within his
power to raise a revenue, and when the
leader of that Government in this House
was declaring that the country was too
poor to build even 185 miles of railway
to give us all rail from Lake Superior
to Red River; had a Syndicate
come to that Government and said,
give us $25,000,000 in cash distributed
over ten years, $2,500,000 a year, and
we will construct 2,000 miles of railway;
we will equip and work 712 miles of
railway; we will open up that vast territory to you, and bring into it such a
population as will make the 25,000,000
acres you grant us and all the vast territory you have there of such value that
you will receive in return the actual cash
subsidy many fold and indirectly you
will receive incalculable advantages to
this country.'' I say, had any Syndicate
come to that Government and made such
a proposition as that, every man of that
Government would, politically, have fallen down and worshipped that Company.
Now, when that result has been reached
by another Government and other men,
in their vexation of spirit they rise up
and their feet are "swift to shed the
blood" of that Syndicate. The opposition to this contract has  taken different "1
forms.    In  the  outset it was declared
that we gave entirely too  much — that
the land itself is worth  more than  the
cost of the whole work that  was to  be
done.      If this had been tiue, why was
the   country   subjected to  anxiety and
trouble with regard to  the  cost of   the
)       work?    If in 1877 and 1878  they  be
lieved what tftey utter now regarding the
value of that land — if our wealth be so
fabulous  as  they represent — why  did
they not go on with  the  work t    What
need was there for hesitation  and seeking for a company ?     But the opposition
has now another form.    We are too poor
to build the line, and must  be  content
with the Central section and connections
with American lines.    That is the policy
they have announced, and to which they
are committed. ■ Every  member of the
•Opposition in  the  House  of Commons
takes  that   ground,  and  votes   for an
amendment moved by   Mr. Burpee declaring that the Western end shall be cut
off.    I have the amendment in my hand,
but I will not detain the House by reading it.    Then another  gentlemam, who
was a member of the late  Government
£      (Mr. Laurier), moves another amendment
E      declaring that the Eastern end shall be
cut off, and the line  to  the  Sault  Ste.
Marie constructed, to connect with American lines.    All that is  fixed  clearly
and plainly on the public records  of the
country as the policy of the Opposition.
Before this last step had been  taken  in
the Commons ; before these amendments
had been placed on record, but after the
policy of the Opposition had been  declared — had taken form and shape, and
crystalized — and   announced   to   their
supporters all over the country, another
company is formed, and proposes to build
the Pacific Railway.    Now, let us for a
moment look at that second offer.    The
first     proposition     is     made    to    the
Government    upon     the    policy    that
&      there   shall    be    unbroken   rail    com-
p      munication    from     ocean     to    ocean;
that we shall construct the  railway from
Nipissing to  the Pacific Ocean.    Upon
that policy, and to carry it into effect,
the first Syndicate make their proposition.    After long negotiations, and satisfaction given that they are equal to the
undertaking, a contract is made, and the
Government is bound to it.    The second
Syndicate, having before them the policy
of the Opposition, and having been sufficiently assured that it will be adhered to
by those gentlemen wheaever they should
come into power, they make their offer,
shaping it to meet that policy. Matters
had reached the point which made it absolutely impossible to abandon the contract with the first Syndicate, unless by
a government lost to all sense of personal, public and political honor, and
they could safely act upon the assumption
that if the Government were so dishonorable as to break their solemn obligation
to the Syndicate, and if in Parliament a
majority could be found so lost to a sense
of honor as to sustain them, then such a
Government and such supporters could
be manipulated to adopt the policy for
which the second ofier is framed — to do
no work east or west except the branch
to the Sault, and so reap a large profit
from the Central section. But this is
not the ground upon which they relied.
Their hope rested upon the Government
honorably adhering to their solemn obligations ; that their offer, which bore on
the face of it an apparent saving of three
millions in cash and the same in land,
might deceive the country and Parliament, and lead to a change of Government and the placing in power the
gentlemen who had announced as their
policy the cutting off of the Eastern and
Western ends of the road, and building
only the prairie section, and to the
Sault; and in their offer they make the
necessary provision therefor, as the following extracts, clearly show :—
" 19. The Company also hereby offers, in the
event of the Government desiring to withdraw
from the proposed construction of the Eastern
Section of the said Railway, that the Company
shall reduce the said subsidy in money and
land by the amount apportioned to the said
Eastern Section of the Railway under the 9th
paragraph of this proposal.
" 20. In the event of the Government desiring to withdraw the said Eastern Section
from construction hereunder, the Company
hereby offers to construct within three years,
and equip, own and operate as a part of the
Canadian Pacific Railway, a branch line from
South-East Bay, Lake Nipissing, to Sault Ste.
Marie and Goulais Bay, Lake Superior, estimated at 294 miles, at and for a sum of
$3,500,000 ; and in all other respects the provisions of this proposal shall apply to the said
Branch Line so far as applicable thereto.
"21. In the event of the Government desiring to postpone or withdraw from construction the Western Section of the said Railway,
extending from Kamloops to Port Moody, they 10
shall be at liberty to do so, and in that event
the Government shall not be bound to complete and hand over to the Company the said
Western Section under the 6th and 7th clauses
" 22. In the event of the Government desiring to postpone or withdraw from construe-
tion by the Company hereunder the westerly
portion of the Central Section of said railway,
being the westerly 450 miles thereof, as mentioned in the 9th clause of this proposal, the
Company offers to reduce the subsidy in money
and land by the amount apportioned to the
said westerly 450 miles of the Central Section
under the said 9th clause hereof."
In this it will be seen that they provide
for cutting off the eastern and western
sections, even to stop the work actually
going on. Leaving, as I said before,
only the central section to be constructed.
Hon. Mr. SCOTT — Depending altogether on the desire of the Government.
Hon. Mr. MILLER — What Government 1
Hon. Mr. SCOTT — The present Government.
Hon. Mr. McLELAN —No; but
the Government that they hoped would
come into power under that offer. It
was to be the Government to be formed
by the men who had announced it as
their policy, and who subsequently
placed it on the public records that it
was -their intention, if ever they came
into power, to drop both ends of the
road, and build only the central section.
Having arranged it in this way, great
stress is laid upon the fact that their
offer is $3,000,00*' and '3,000,000 acres
less than the offer of the first Syndicate,
2,400,000 of which are on central section,
and almost all the hon. gentlemen who
have spoken in favor of Syndicate No. 2,
say that the acceptance of their offer
would be a saving of from twelve to fifteen millions of doPars. We must look
at the second proposition as it really is,
and as it is really intended to be — for
the construction of the central section —
the eastern and western ends to be dropped.
Hon. Mr. SCOTT—No ; it speaks for
Hon. Mr. McLELAN — It speaks for
itself, and I have read the three clauses
which speak for themselves. I have read
also the amendment moved in the House
of Commons, and sustained by every
member of the Opposition, which speak
for themselves ; and I need not refer to
other speeches which speak for themselves — all declaring in the plainest
terms what would be the procedure
whenever those gentlemen came into
Hon. Mr. MILLER — Under the new
Hon. Mr. McLELAN — Now, hon.
gentlemen, let us look at that $3,000,000
which it is claimed they will save, and
you will take this fact into consideration,
that they were to cut off the western
section — that means that they were to
be saved the expense of equipping 217
miles of railw,ay there, which I estimate
at $3,000 a mile — very much less than
it cost to equip the Intercolonial.
Having looked at the returns for the
equipment of railways in the United
States, I have seen that in sixteen
or seventeen railways the returns give
an average for equipment, rolling stock,
etc., of $7,500 per mile. On the Intercolonial we expended on 500 miles
something like $2,000,000 on rolling
stock alone; and in addition to the
rolling stock there is an enormous expenditure on what is called equipment.
I have put it down at only $3,000 per
mile, which is $651,000 they will save
in the equipment of the western end,
and then the saving of loss in the working of 657 miles. They would not
build 450 miles down from the Rocky
Mountains, which makes altogether 657
miles of railway, which it is admitted
could not be worked for .many years
without loss. I put that loss at a very
small figure — $1,000 a mile — making
$657,000 a year, or for five years
$3,285,000. The two together will be a
saving in the equipment and working of
that portion- of the road of $3,936,000.
But the period of loss in working that
western section should be placed beyond
five years, and the loss very much more,
and therefore the saving or escape from
loss very much the greater. Mr. Mackenzie, in 18 77,page 1,639- of Hansard,
says, speaking of the whole line, including the central section, which it is admitted will be profitable : " The whole is
an undertaking which for many years
can  yield no  profit."   If    you   assume
I 11
that both propositions are to build the
whole road, how does this matter stand 1
Assuming, as the hon. gentleman, the ex-
Secretaryjof State, wouldi ntimate,that the
proposition is to construct the whole
road, .which I deny, and which I always
will deny	
Hon. Mr. SCOTT — The offer speaks
for itself.
Hon. Mr. McLELAN — And speaking for itself it proclaims to the world
that it was never intended otherwise.
Hon. Mr. SCOTT — The hon. gentleman knows very well that the option is
with the Government.
Hon. Mr. McLELAN — And the
gentlemen who made that proposition
knew very well that if it were ever accepted and ever acted upon, it would be
by the gentlemen who now form the Op.
position in the House of Commons.
Hon. Mr. SCOTT — Then it was a
farce submitting the other.
Hon. Mr. McLELAN — Now,
assuming that both propositions
were to build the whole line,
how does the matter stand 1 As I have
said before, the Government entered into
that contract and were bound in honor to
adhere to it. The two syndicates stand
in this position : that the Government
made a contract with certain capitalists,
after it had been assured that those capitalists had sufficient means and sufficient
connections formed abroad to raise the
large amount of money that would be
necessary to complete the undertaking.
The second Syndicate, although composed
of a number of very excellent gentlemen
in mercantile life, do not claim that they
had any foreign connections made whereby they could raise the capital necessary
to carry out this work. Hon. gentlemen
who are now in Opposition will not deny,
but all, except the ex-Secretary of State,
will admit that in order to complete this
work a very large amount of money must
be raised in some way, in addition to
what is provided under the Government
subsidy of $25,000,000. The original
Syndicate had all their connections made
in New York and in London, and on the
continent of Europe, whereby they
could raise almost any . amount
of     money     that    might    be    neces
sary to carry on the under
taking; and the Government had
ascertained this before completing that
contract, as it was necessary and wise for
them to do. In 1871 we had the Allan
contract ; we had gentlemen of large
means in this country, far greater than
those of the present new Syndicate, of
great railway experience and of great
sagacity, who combined! and deposited
their millions and went abroad to seek
the funds necessary for their contract ;
but having no connections made abroad,
and having te meet the hostility of the
stockholders of the Grand Trunk Railway in the foreign markets, they failed
to float the scheme, and ten years have
been lost; and the lesson from the past
was, that the first and main point was
to know that the men who proposed to
undertake this great work had their
connections formed abroad whereby they
could command the necessary capital and
influence that would be instrumental in
directing a large emigration to this
country — an organization that would be
prepared to send into the North-West
the people that will be necessary
in order to make that road, or
any road that is ever constructed
there, profitable. The gentlemen who
make the second proposition had no such
connections, and do not profess to have
formed any connections whereby the
means necessary to carry on the work
may be raised. The Act of 1874, passed
by the gentlemen now in Opposition, who
approve this second Syndicate, declares
that no section or subjection of it shall be
given to any contractor or company who
does not satisfy the Government that
they have a capital of at least $4,000 a
mile to carry on the work. Now, for
2,000 miles that means at least
$8,000,000, and when you come to
equip 712 miles it will require from
$2,000,000 to $3,000,000 more ; so that
it would take $8,000,000, or $10,000,000
at least according to the declaration of
hon. gentlemen in Opposition when they
passed the Act of 1874, as a capital to
commence operations with. They may
tell us ^jat: the second Syndicate, al -
though they do not claim to have that
amount of money — do not claim to be
worth that .in themselves, taking their
entire property — that they could raise
it abroad; but  there is just the weak
i 12
point in the proposition of the second
Syndicate, that they have not made
their connections in the money markets
of the world, to float their bonds or
inl any way raise the capital necessary.
In addition to that, it may be claimed
that they could make their connections ;
but the moment that you dissolve the
contract, the moment you violate the
public honor of this country and declare that the public men — the Government of Canada—cannot be trusted to
enter into any contract; that whenever
it suits their whim, or the whims of
their supporters, they can drop out, and
will drop out of their agreement, you
destroy all confidence in the money markets of the world, and you would
create in this instance such a hostility
among the members of this Syndicate
and their friends, as to render it impossible for the second Syndicate to raise
the necessary funds abroad. I am free
to say, in the construction of this work
and in the running of the road for ten
years at least, and in the organization
necessary to bring into that territory
the population that will eventually make
it pay, trom $50,000,000 to $70,000,000
must be expended, from which
we may deduct the subsidy of
$25,000,000, leaving a very large
amount to be provided for from abroad,
and for which no provision has been
made, or can be made, by the second
Syndicate. The ex-Secretary of State
tells us that this is all brought about
from a want of notice, that if the notice
had been given | there would have been
abundance of offers made even more
favorable than the offer of the second
Syndicate. Now, if we turn to the history of this undertaking, from 1871,
1877 and 1878, up to the present time,
you will find it has been the declaration
of every Government in this country that
they were desirous to have a company
undertake the whole of the work. The
very fact, as I said before, of 100,-
000,000 acres being set apart in 1879 by
the Government for the construction of
the Pacific Railway, was an intimation
to the world more plain and more
forcible than any advertisement in any
newspaper could have been, that that
was to be utilized as a subsidy to a company, or in some other way, in order to
complete this work.    If it were not so,
what was the use of passing a resolution in
Parliament, if a portion or the whole of
it was not to be given over to some company who would undertake, as previously
provided by Act, its construction ; if Parliament meant that the Government
should go on and construct the whole
railway as a Government work, why put
apart 100,000,000 acres of laad? The
Government held that land before, and all
they had to do was to go on and pay the
money out of the public treasury whenever it came in from loans, complete the
work, and the proceeds of land sales go
into the treasury. If there was one idea
more clearly and firmly fixed on the public
mind than another, it was that this work,
to be least burdensome to the country
and most successfully carried out, must
be in the hands of a company largely subsidized. The resolution of Parliament in
1871, the Act of 1874, the declaration of
the Government in 1877 and 1878, the
labors of Mr. Fleming in Europe, the
placing of 100,000,000 acres of lands ia
the hands of this Government, were all
standing declarations to capitalists that
" we wish you to organize aad undertake
this work. " Then, we have the announcement of the leader of the Government at
a public meeting at Bath [on the 29th
June last that they were seeking a company. His words were reported in every
papec in the Dominion, and a wider and a
clearer advertisement was ne>er given.
He said :—
" When he told his hearers that at this moment there were a number of capitalists offering to build the road, desirous of taking it off
the hands of the Government, and also of making their own fortunes by running it, and the
settlement of the lands which had been set
apart to pay for the construction, they would
quite understand how false and absurd were
the charges made against the Government,
that the building of the line was overwhelming the people. The Government at this moment had the offers made under consideration,
so that there was no danger regarding the
road, and there was no room for doubting that
the great western country would be opened up,
not only for the. young men of Canada, but for
the world, to settle. The Government was
pursuing a vigorous course regarding the railway. The policy of the late Government was
to construct it in disconnected sections. That
absurd system the present Government had
stopped, and the hope and the intention was
to have, as speedily as possible, railway communication that would span the Dominion."
Here we have it published "far and 13
wide " that offers were being made and
considered, and we have the policy of
the Government for a through line declared. Following this we had the announcement that members of the Government would proceed to Europe to
endeavor to secure the best company and
the best terms from capitalists. Months
passed after these announcements ; no advertisement ever issued by the Government of Canada had a wider circulation, or attracted so general notice.
But, notwithstanding that, we do' not
find that a single man whose name is
now upon the second Syndicate moved a
finger or a pen, or uttered a word in the
way of forming a company to construct
that work — even the central section. If
we look at that second Syndicate, and at
its birth and history, and if we look at
the men whose names are appended .to
that second offer we will see that it is
dependent for its very existence
upon the first Syndicate, and upon their
contract having been consummated, and
the Government being bound to that
contract. . Why, hon. gentlemen, you
turn to the names of the gentlemen composing this second company — I have the
list of them here, and I have the rating
that Bradstreet gives to all of these.
I have here the statement, and what
do you suppose is the amount of capital
that they are supposed in their persons
— in their entire persons — to represent ? Why, hon. gentlemen, it foots
up to $2,671,000.
Hon. Mr. SCOTT —Preposterous!
Hon. Mr. McLELAN —I am only
taking Bradstreet's figures and they are accepted by the mercantile world ; they
are the figures that would be
looked at in England and on the
continent, and wherever they might
go in order to raise capital. It would
be asked " What is the standing of those
men, and what capital do they represent
in their persons ? " and Bradstreet would
be referred to for information.
Hon. Mr. SCOTT — I know two of
them who are worth a million each.
Hon. Mr. McLELAN — I know one
gentleman who is put down here for a
million, and you take him out of it, and
you would   have   only   $1,671,000   to
represent the rest. There are several
names of very excellent mercantile business men down for very considerable
sums, large comfortable sums to carry
on the ordinary business engaged in by
merchants, but one-half the members are
rated in the list I hold in my hand at
under one hundred thousand dollars,
some as low as five thousand dollars, and
one at five hundred dollars. Two or
three weeks ago, walking up to the
Building with a gentleman not in politics, he said to me, " here comes a member of the new Syndicate ;" he gave the
name (it is not the lowest rated on the
list) and added, " I had his note a short
time ago for $250, and had very hard
work indeed to get it discounted."
The hon. ex-Secretary of State says
there are millionaires on the list. I find
one, and as he is so rated, I may, without offence, name him, Mr. Gibson, of
New Brunswick, a most excellent man,
the backbone of the company, but let
us inquire a little how the company gets
this backbone and whence it draws its
strength and vitality, giving to the whole
its life and existence. Why, hon. gentlemen, it is from the first Syndicate. Mr.
A. Gibson, who is down on this paper
for $1,000,000, is the man who deposited
$500,000, nearly one half of the whole
deposit — that $500,000 came from the
old Syndicate. It was the money paid
to Mr. Gibson by members of the first
Syndicate in the purchase of the Woodstock and Riviere du Loup Railway.
When the men of the contracting company were considering the proposition to
take the Pacific Railway, they would
naturally look to a through connection to
the sea, and the facilities to distribute the
great volume of traffic which it is hoped
at no very distant day will come down
that great highway. This Woodstock
road attracted attention as presenting a
link in the system, and was purchased
by men of the first Syndicate. Mr.
Gibson was a large stockholder in that
road, which was yielding little returns.
Excellent man as he is — millionaire as
he is rated — it will be admitted, I think,
that with over $808,000 locked up in
that road, he was not in a position to
make even a show of constructing the
Pacific Railway. The purchase was
made. Mr. Gibson was paid $840,000,
and   months   afterwards joins  the new- 14
company    forming    on     the   line    of
the    Opposition  policy    and   depositsi
$500,000    of   the   very  cash   received
from   members   of  the   old  Syndicate.
We then reach the conclusion that  tut
for  the  money paid by members of the
old contracting Syndicate in  completion
of their system,  the new company could
never  have  had   existence,  no  matter
how great the political exigencies of the
Opposition,  and we have  also  the fatal
conclusion that although   existing and
able to make the government deposit, it
has not the strength at home or abroad
for  this great enterprise, and we  may
without hesitation put it aside as being
unworthy of serious consideration, and
come down to the  proposition " Is it   a
good or a bad contract that the  Government   have  made ?"    Now  let us see
what   it is that   the   Syndicate   have
undertaken to do, and what is to be done.
I have already stated it, and need not
repeat  it.    The question is not so much
whether the Syndicate has a good or bad
bargain, but has the Government made
sufiicient efforts to secure the best terms
possible,  and are the terms  better for
the country than to  proceed with the
work by  the Government,   paying   all
cash,  and disposing of our lands as we
best can ?   Let us endeavor to find   out
what     it     will     cost     as     a     government   work    and   judge   our   position.     We   have   heard   a good  deal
about estimates of the Government engineers, and there has been  a great handling of what it is estimated to cost this
year, and what it was another year, but
I have come to place very little reliance
upon the estimates  that  are made for
railways   constructed   by  governments.
I have had some experience of them on
the Intercolonial Railway, where we had
to   build   five   hundred miles of   road
through a settled country.     After getting a large portion of it under contract;
after getting careful  estimates from the
engineers, jwe reported to  the Government that it would cost something like
$17,500,000.     When  the  expenditure
had advanced we reported that it would
cost   $18,500,000,   and  the  succeeding
year, when we went along a little further,
we felt confident we could do it within
$20,000,000 — the sum that Parliament
had set apart for it.    But, hon. gentlemen, it was not  finished and [running
until $22,000,000 were expended. In
passing, let me here correct an impression that exists as to the cost of that
work. The whole of the Government
roads, which include the old roads in
Nova Scotia and New Brunswick, previous to Confederation — the extensions
since are now included with the road
constructed by the Dominion, and all
called Intercolonial — swell the cost up
to $35,000,000, or, with the Point
Levis connection and interest, to
$45,000,000. The new road cost
say $22,000,000 to start with.
I have come to place very little reliance on the estimates of Government
engineers as to the cost of this great
work, especially when so much of it is
through an unbroken and untrodden
forest. Consider the difference. The
Intercolonial Railway was through an
old settled district, while many parts of
the Canadian Pacific Railway will run
through a country, as Mr. Mackenzie
has told us, that was never trodden by
the foot of a white man until the engineers went there. Therefore it is impossible that so close an estimate can^be
made for the Pacific Railway as was
formed for the Intercolonial. Take for
instance some of the work that has
already been done. Take the sections
that were let previous to the change of
Government between Thunder Bay and
Selkirk to the extent of 228 miles ; a
great deal of that is almost a prairie
country for railway construction.
Hon. Mr. SCOTT — Prairie country %
Hon. Mr. McLELAN — A greal deal
of it is not much heavier than prairie.
There is comparatively little excavation
in it except on Section 15. The 76 miles
beyond is very light work indeed,as were
the sections next to Thunder Bay. Now
I take it that those sections of 228 miles
will be about a fair average of all the
work that is to be done on the 2,000
miles. You have got 450 miles through
the Rocky Mountains, and 650 miles on
the eastern section, making 1,100 miles
which are admitted to be heavy. Put
these with the prairie section of 900
miles, and you have 2,000 miles which
will average, at least, as much cost per mile
as the 228 miles put under contract by
the late Government.    Now, it may be 15
asked, what is the difference in the character of the road 2 The character of the
road will be in any case much the same.
The late Government put those 228
miles under contract, to be completed
with trestle work; that is, the road bed,
wherever it crossed a valley, was to be
set on stilts, and the bridges are wood
in piers and superstructure. Those 228
miles have been completed — all except
section 15 — on that specification. Now,
what is the cost of those sections, which
I claim to be a fair average of the whole
work to be done 1 In 1877, we had the
then Premier announcing in the House
of Commons that he had 228 miles under
contract—that it had been most carefully
surveyed, that an estimate had been
made, and that it was under contract. It
was to be an excellent road, and to be
built for $24,581 a mile.
Hon. Mr. DICKEY —And about
equal to the Intercolonial in character.
Mr.    McLELAN — Yes, and
-as   nobody   present   who  had
and     who
to correct the impression
such a statement from the
of Public Works, whose
road was on stilts, while the Intercolonial
Railway was built on solid embankments,
masonry and iron bridges ; but this was
his estimate, after careful survey : that he
would have it running for $24,581 per
mile. What has been the result ? The
work went on, and the road is about complete, and it runs up — as near as I can
get to it, making allowance for equipment
which is yet to be made—$33,000 a mile.
This 228 miles, which I take as a fair
average of the whole 2,000 miles which
are to be constructed, would cost the
Government, if they had to equip it, at
least $33,000 a mile, at which rate the
2,000 miles would amount to $66,000,-
000. In addition to this there are 712
miles to be equipped, and, as I have said
before, I have put the equipment of this
road at very much less than it did cost to
equip the Intercolonial Railway, and very
much less than it will really cost to
equip it — at $3,000 a mile, which
will make $2,000,000 ; bringing the total
up to $68,000,000, exclusive of interest
at the very lowest calculation that it
would cost the Government if they con
structed  it themselves.    Then, in addi
tion to  that, hon.   gentlemen, after the
Company has opened the road and commenced to run it, there will be additional
cost and additions to capital accountevery
year.    After we opened the Intercolonial
Railway, and had it running, there have
been additions to the capital account of
from $400,000 to $900,000 a year, which
in six years amounted to over $3,000,000.
Assuming that the Government run this
road themselves,  and taking as a guide
the losses on the Intercolonial Railway,
which   runs fiirough  a   comparatively
settled   country, for the first six years
the  additions   to   capital   account, the
1 working expenses, and interest, there has
been an annual loss of $2,000,000.    Estimating the running of the Pacific Railway
2,700 miles, at one-half the loss — that is
for interest and additions to capital account, and direct loss in the working expenses — and you have in five years, say
$20,000,000 of an expenditure. Add this
together, and you have at the end of five
years after  the  opening  of the  road, a
total expenditure of $88,000,000.     You
pay  out to the Syndicate  $25,000,000,
distributed  over a period of ten years,
which deducted from  the $88,000,000
would leave  $63,000,000  as the cost to
the Company, exclusive of interest, which
will increase the amouut largely  over
and above the $25,000,000 subsidy they
receive,  and for this  $63,000,000  and
interest they get 25,000,000 acres of land.
Why, hon.   gentlemen, I wish  we could
dispose  of all our lands in the  North-
West at anything near that figure.    The
cry has  been  here, are we not giving
too much land "?     I think the sooner we
get rid ot this land the better  it will be
for   the    Dominion,   and    the    better
it   will   be    for    the    world.      Hon.
gentlemen     in    opposition      seem    to
forget or not to realize the extent of our
territory.    I have here under  my hand
the " Physical   Atlas " prepared by Dr.
Hurlburt from the most reliable information to be obtained in the  Departments
and elsewhere, and map 6 shows the extent   of   grass lands of the Dominion,
which he places as extending over  an
area of more  than two  million square
miles or more than 1,200,000,000 acres.
(Here the  hon.   gentleman exhibited a
map colored to show the grass lands with
the   twenty-five   millions   proposed   to
J lfi
give the Syndicate.) Hon. gentlemen
can perhaps best realize the small proportion which this twenty-five millions
bears to the whole North-West beyond
Lake Superior by the accompanying
showing 36 equal divisions, each representing twenty-five millions, any one of
which represents what we give for building the road. Map No. 7 in the same
way shows the region suited for cereals
and the diagram is reduced to 24 divisions, one of which represents the proportion of wheat lands the twenty-five
millions will take. In the notes to the
map he says :—
" South of the northern limits where wheat
has been found maturing, east of the Rocky
Mountains and west of Ontario there are
some 950,000 to 1,000,000 square miles in the
North-West Territories of Canada. This
immense area of 600,000,000 acres lies in a
similar position on this continent and with
climates almost identical with the best wheat
countries of the old world,- the westernf
northern, north-western and central parts oe
Europe. It lies, too, in the valleys of the
great rivers of the northern half of the continent — the Saskatchewan, Assiniboine, Red,
Winnipeg, Peace, Arthabaska and Mackenzie,
with probably a larger percentage of tillable
soil than in any equal area in the old world."
Well, hon. gentlemen, considering the
enormous extent of territory that we
have there, and with the small proportion
represented in the land grant for the
construction of this work, there is no
room for complaint that we are giving
too much land. I say the sooner we can
get rid of that land on the same terms as
this the better for the Dominion, and for
the world at large, in which there are so
many poor suffering for bread. . If I
understand the position of the Opposition, it is that it would have been better
to have held the lands and gone on and
constructed this road as a Government
work.    That means that you must take
all the revenues of the Dominion and'
concentrate them upon that work in the
far West. What would the older provinces say to such a course ? They all
have public works that must be attended
to by the Dominion Government, and if
you apply the whole revenue of the
country to building the Pacific Railway,
instead of making the public land contribute to it, you will have a rebellion in
the older provinces, more especially when
there is an opportunity of getting rid of
the work on the terms contained in this
Bill. The subsidy has been spoken of as
a payment of $25,000,000 cash down,
but it is distributed over ten years. Sir
Richard Cartwright says :—
" Our obligation was not to pay the Company $25,000,000 on or before the 1st of January, 1882, but $25,000,000 in instalments, the
last of which will mature in January, 1891.
Our cash obligations to the Company would be
fairly computed to-day at something like-
$18,000,000 or $19,000,000, and not
The House will remember that the hon.
ex-Secretary of State took the subsidy
that the Government proposed to pay to
the Syndicate, and by some mysterious
calculation of his own, which I am sure
I failed to comprehend, he arrived at the
conclusion that the Syndicate would
build the whole road, and have about
$19,000,000, and the 25,000,000 acres
of land worth $75,000,000. cTalk about
the greenback system. It is wholly
eclipsed. Talk about the fag babyr
why the rag baby is dead, and the ex-
Secretary of State has buried it out of
sight! I do not pretend to equal the
old Scotchman who was asked if he
could preach a sermon. " Yes/'
he said. "And can you divide
it up in its different heads?"
"Yes," he replied. "And can you
draw the inference ?" " Indeed, I can.'
| Well, now, what inference would vou
draw from this text : ' The wild "ass
snuffeth up the east wind 1' " " Aye,,
replied the old man, " I wad just draw
the inference that he wud no get verra
fat." Well, hon. gentlemen, I draw the
inference that the Syndicate that constructs this Pacific Railway in the manner proposed by the ex-Secretary of State
—the men who furnish the supplies, the
navvies who do the hard work, the men
who   run   the   coad,   and every    man 17
connected with it will  be   snuffing up
the east wind, and " no get  verra fat."
Nothing but the expenditure of millions
of hard cash will ever bring that work
to completion, and no process by which
the   hon. gentleman  can bring  out on
paper, a balance of $19,000,000, in favor
of the   Syndicate will   ever accomplish
it.     Various    propositions    have   been
made for the construction of this work.
I do not propose   to detain the House
with   a   comparison of all  the  various
offers and propositions which have been
made,     but      I    do     say    this,   that
taking the hon. ex-Secretary of State's
own  line   of argument,  that  money iis
cheaper now and .easier raised than it
was in 1871 and 1874, the facts become
stronger against him.    Taking the rate
of interest that wo were paying in 1871
and the rate that we are paying now,
it   will  not   cost us   more   to    raise
$36,134,831   now than it did  cost  us
when  we   offered the  Allan   Company
$30,000,000.      Or,   if    you   take   the
reverse  of it, the  $25,000,000   at the
rate we are paying for money now, would
only be equal in reality to $20,755,000
as   compared with  the $30,000,000  in
1871.    Taking the hon. gentleman's own
line of argument, the comparison in all
cases   becomes   more   favorable to the
present contract.    Objections have been
taken to the allotment to   the central
section being, as is claimed, out of proportion to the western and eastern  sections.    Hon. gentlemen should bear in
mind that the first expenditure   almost
of the  Syndicate will be the equipment
of 712 miles of railway;   this and  to
run it, will require a large amount of
capital.    Then, a large amount of capital
will  be necessary to provide plant for
the whole undertaking, and to organize
a   thorough    system    of    immigration.
Whilst constructing   the   central,   they
must proceed with the eastern section.
iThe  cash  subsidy  given to the eastern
and western sections will fall far short of
the actual  cost, and it  is  both for the
interest  of the Dominion and  the Syndicate that a large amount of land should
be given to the Syndicate  for settlement
as soon  as  possible.    Some  time must
necessarily  elapse   before the Syndicate
can  have  a return from lands  to help
provide   the   cost   of  constructing  the
eastern   and  western    sections.    It   is
essential    to    the    prosperity   of    the
North-West   and    the   success   of   the
whole    that    there   shall   be   a   large
population   put   in   there,    and    that
you shall give  over to the  Company for
that purpose, as soon as possible, as large
an extent of territory  as it is  safe to do
under the terms of the contract.    All the
land that the Syndicate  can settle in the
first years during the construction of the
road will lie along the line, and the  900
miles over the prairie section  will only
give them sufficient land as laid down
within the proper distance on each side
of the line.    But, if the gentlemen of the
Opposition think that we should  have
held     part      of     these     lands     and
money   and    placed   it   directly   upon
the   eastern     and     western     portions
of the road, what have they to say to
their own Act of 1874 ?   That  Act divides  the work into sections.    It  says
" it shall be divided into  sections," and
it names- them just as they are named in
this contract.    Then it  goes on to  say
that  $10,000 a  mile shall be given to
each and  every mile, and in every section, and that 20,000 acres of land shall
be given to  every mile of every section
of the  road.    That Act declaring   that
this   subsidy  should   be   given   in   all
cases would  give to that central section
$10,000 in cash and   20,000   acres   of
land     per     mile,    and     in     addition
to that they propose  to guarantee  four
per cent, or any sum the contractors and
the Government might agree upon.    We
will drop the  four  per cent.    We  will
put any valuation   that   any gentleman
who has spoken  on that side will mention upon the land; but $3 seems to be
the figure about  which they  all  cling.
You have  at that rate $60,000  worth
of land, and $10,000 in cash, or $70,000
a mile for building the Central section.
That is what chey proposed to give under-
their   Act of 1874.    But sjmo hon. gentlemen lay great stress upon the fact, or
what    they    call   a    fact,   that    this
measure will create a monopoly in the
west — a monopoly which the hon. Senator from Charlottetown said would be
like a malaria spreading over the land.
I was, and am still, under the impression
that the object of this Bill is to break up
n monopoly that has existed in the North-
West from time immemorial.    The Indians, the buffaloes, the prairie dogs and
9. If
the muskrats have had a monopoly of
that country for ages, and the proposition
is to break up the monopoly of barbarism
and to give that country civilization,
prosperity and advancement in the world.
They say it is a monopoly because no
other company can construct a railway
to within fifteen miles of the boundary.
The hon. gentleman opposite who spoke
yesterday asked, "Would you give a
river away 1" and some hon. gentlemen
said, " hear, hear." Certainly not if the
river were open and free to the navigation of the world. But if it were obstructed and any individual should fit it
for navigation by overcoming those obstructions, the country would give him
a monopoly of it, and the privilege
of exacting tolls for the use of it
by others. The Government itself
constructs canals and charges tolls upon
vessels passing through them, and in that
way has a monopoly of our rivers. A
cise occurred a few days ago, where one
lumberman had made improvements on
•a river, and another lumberman passed
Lis logs over the chutes of that river.
The owner of the improvements sued
him, and the Court decided that he had
a monopoly of the works on that river.
But why should these hon. gentlemen
talk about a nianopoly being created be
cause of this clause in the Bill 1 Look
at their own. Mr. Mills, while a member of the late Government, introduced a
Bill in the other House for the construction of railways in the North-West, by
which he created the very kind of monopoly that the same hon. gentleman now
complains of. He says in that Bill:—
" No company shall be incorporated,
under the provisions of this Act, for the
construction of any railway having the
same general direction as the Canadian Pacific Railway, or any branch thereof, at a
nearer mean distance than forty miles."
People outside of Parliament reading
that would take up that word " mean "
and say it was mean to complain of a
bill that allows you to go within fifteen
miles of the frontier, when these gentlemen declare themselves that no one
should go within forty miles of the Pacific
Railway. Then they complain of the
rates of freight, and contend that the
road should be held by the Government
in oider that they might regulate those
rates, and the   ex-Secretary   of   State
instanced the case of the Intercolonial Railway being held as a
Government work, and that we
came to this House to complain
of the rates, and they were reduced. Th#
fact is, that all the great railways of this
continent: the syndicates, and companies,
and individuals, that have been gathering
in and strengthening their lines, have
tended, under the management of-the j
companies, to a reduction of the rates of
freight, and it was only because the
Intercolonial Railway -ft as held by the
Government — held'by the late Government — that we had to come
to this House to complain of
the rates of freight. At that time
all the railways held by private
companies on this continent were reducing their rates for freight and were
increasing the traffic upon their lines,
whilst the late Government were increasing the charges for freight, and reducing
the traffic upon the Intercolonial. 1
remember bringing this matter to the
notice of this Chamber during the administration of the late Government, and
of having cited numerous cases of reductions made by companies in the
rates for freight; and having presented such a case as was unanswerable
to the Government; and that, I
believe, had some little influence
in bringing about a reduction of the
rates upon the Intercolonial. I say that,
so far from being alarmed at the rates
that railway companies may charge, we
would have more cause for alarm if the
line. were owned by the Government,
because governments will not watch so
closely the interests of a railway and
the wants of traffic as a company will.
The Government are not so easily reached
as a company is, nor so easily affected in
their own interest or in their pockets ;
therefore, I claim that it is safer under
a company that will carefully watch the
pulse of traffic, and, in every possible
way, seek to strengthen it; besides, we
can, when there is need, reach them under the clauses of the general Railway
Act. But hon. gentlemen also assert
that this Company will hold their lands,
and they have cited the case of the
" Canada Land Company," which hag
held lands for 20 or 30 years, but the
cases are quite different. The main profits of the;Syndicate must arise from the 19
•settlement of their lands. What is the
advantage of the Company undertaking
to construct the Pacific Railway through
that territory if they do not at the
first possible moment settle the^larfdsi
along the line. They must, in order to
save themselves, either settle our lands
■which are1 sandwiched in with theirs, or
settle their own. I believe the Syndicate cannot build that road for less than
■$50,000,000, and it would have cost the
Government very much more, as I have
attempted to show. Now, all that the
Government pays is $25,000,000, which
■wiH leave at least $25,000,000 to be provided for by the Syndicate. They are
under bonds therefore to the extent
of $1,250,000 a year for the
interest upon that sum at least,
and they have also the expense
of working the road of at least
$6,000,000, so that the Syndicate is
under bonds to the extent of $7,250,000
atthe very lowest calculation—to sell their
land or to people ours. Whichever way
yon put it, if they sell their own lands,
or if they people ours the advantages
will accrue to the Dominion.
The debate was adjourned until tomorrow. Mr. McLeelan still holding
the floor.
Thursday, February 10th, 1881.
Hon. Mr. McLELAN said: Hon. gentlemen, I am sorry to trespass further
upon the attention and time of the House,
bat I shall endeavor to limit my remarks
and make them as brief as possible today. When: the House adjourned last
evening, I was endeavoring to show that
there1 need be no apprehension of a monopoly in the North-West under the Bill
transferring the construction of this work
to a Syndicate. I had shown, I think,
that it was the interest of the Syndicate
to dispose of their lands as early as possible and to settle that country in order
'that they might have a traffic which
would pay the cost of running the railway and the interest upon the necessary
•capital that they would invest over and
above tie subsidy. This sum I place at
#7,850,000, or for five years — the period
for which I had made my other calculations— it would amount to $36,2,10,000.
Hon. gentlemen will see that, having the
Syndicate under so heavy bonds to dispose of their lands and to settle the country, there need be no great alarm that
they would hold them for an increased
value. All that the lands, if held, would
increase in value would be lost in the
annual deficit in the working of the road,
and in the interest of the capital. Without population, hon. gentlemen know that
the railway cannot exist, that they cannot meet the interest upon their bonds
which they will have outstanding; and
the probabilities are that they would
otherwise have to go into bankruptcy
and be sold out, as many other railways in the TJnited States have
been during the past year. I have
here a statement showing that 31 railways in the TJnited States, for the past
year, with an aggregate length of 3,371
miles, with $166,000,000 bonds and
$97,000,000 stocks, were sold under
foreclosure of mortgage.
Hon.   Mr.   SCOTT — Between  what
years ?
Hon. Mr. McLELAN — That was
during the last year. In five years 228
roads,having a mileage of 20,000—nearly
23 per cent, of the present total mileage
of the United States—and a nominal investment of $1,236,000,000, became bankrupt, and bankrupt mainly and solely,
as we all must infer, from the want of
traffic upon the roads. If this Syndicate
should follow the insane practice of withholding their lands from settlement they
must inevitably become bankrupt also;
but if they settle the lands of the Dominion, and thereby secure traffic, then the
ends we desire will be accomplished.
But how are they to lock up their lands ?
How are they to get increased prices
when we have intermixed with all the
lands that they can hold — good, bad and
indifferent ■—• lands of the same quality
and the same quantity, acre for
acre, mile for mile, and farm for
farm, which will be sold at a dollar and a quarter an acre1? Hon.
gentlemen have claimed that the Company will get the best lands. Why, under
the system in which the lands are to be
located — in alternate blocks of a mile
square — if they get a good mile we will
have an adjoining mile equally good,
and the average price that  wo  could get 20
for it, under the land regulations  which
were published in October last, would be
at the highest, one dollar and a quarter
an acre.     Taking the homestead lot for
settlement  and   the preemption  lot,  of
160 acres each — the one  lot  free and
the other lot at two dollars and a half an
acre — we get in this way  for  the  two
lots   an   average   of   one dollar and  a
quarter an acre, from which deduct one-
quarter as the cost of management, and
the price obtained by the Government as
the net receipts for the land, will, in the
best belt, be one dollar an acre.   Assuming that the Company hold   their   own I
lands and settle ours, how will the matter stand ?   You see with   the average
price of our lands, and with the facilities
afforded   by   the   railway, there can be
little doubt that the  lands held by  the
Government will be readily sold  at the
price I have named.     What will be the
result   of   the   settlement  of an equal
quantity of land to that which  we  give
the Syndicate — 25,000,000 acres 1 I go
to the Census of the TJnited  States, and
find that the returns of the  quantity  of
land held by farmers there, improved and
uninproved, is given.    Taking the  State
of Minnesota, the improved  lands there
amounted   in   1870 to 2,322,000 acres,
and   unimproved   to  4,161,000   acres;
making altogether  6,483,000 acres, the
population is  439,000, which gives an
average  of  14^ acres per head.    I go to
the State of Michigan, which had in the
same year 10,000,0i/0 acres of land in the
hands  of   agriculturists, and a population   of   1,184,000, and average of 8£
acres a head.   Take our 25,000,000 acres,
and put them in  the hands  of agriculturists, and   you will  have, at least, a
population of 2,000,000.     So that if the
Syndicate does nothing more than settle
the 25,000,000 of acres of land . that we
have intermixed  with  theirs, they   will
confer an incalculable benefit upon  this
Dominion.    Then   again, as  a   further
guarantee, at the end of twenty years, if
they are so disposed to hold their lands,
the population there will have the power
to  impose taxation upon them;   and if
the Railway Company  carry  into  that
country a population that  will  pay for
the cost  of working  and running the
railway,   that population  will  be  sufficiently strong to control the  taxation of
that territory, and will impose such taxes
upon those lands as will ensure their
being thrown open for settlement. But,
hon. gentlemen, it has been claimed by
the Opposition, further, that although
after twenty years, or upon the sale of
any of the Syndicate lands, the municipalities will have the right to tax those
lands, it is complained that they have
no right to tax the roadbed and rolling-
stock, or the property of the Syndicate.
Why, hon. gentlemen, the municipalities
would not be in any worse position if
the Government, as hon. gentlemen opposite now advocate, should construct the
road. No man supposes for a moment
that if the Government were to build
this road that it would give the municipalities of the North-West the right to
tax the roadbed and rolling-stock. To
us of the Maritime Provinces, it is a new
proposition thus to tax the roadbed of a
railway. We are more familiar, hon.
gentlemen, in the Maritime Provinces —
I speak more particularly for the Province of Nova Scotia — with the hardships endured by the first settlers in their
efforts to gain a footing in the country.
We are familiar with the recitals
thereof, showing that the pioneers of
Nova Scotia, and I presume of
all the older provinces, endured hardships, suffered privations, and overcame obstacles greater than many men
have overcome whose names are recorded
in history as heroes. When the men of
the older provinces had undergone all'
those hardships, when they cleared their
farms, established cities and towns, and
made the wilderness to blossom, then
companies came to them and proposed to
build railways, and asked them to contribute something towards construction.
In some cases the right of way was provided, in others bonuses were given to
the company. In the Province to which
I belong the Government proposed to
construct a railway, and in addition to
the people of the counties through which
that railway ran, bearing their Ishare of
the cost of construction, they were called
upon and taxed to pay the right of way
through those counties. And here, hon.
gentlemen, a proposition is gravely made
to us, the descendents of the people who
endured all the hardships of settling tKifc
country, who have purchased and held
the great North-West Territory at a cost,
as the hon.  Secretary of State says, of
■■ 21
$10,000,000, and an annual charge of
one and a quarter millions, exclusive of
the railway, and are now called upon to
contribute twenty-five millions  more to
complete   this    undertaking,   and   are
gravely told that we  should   go further
and provide that the people going into
that country  with  all  the   advantages
which we of the older provinces provide,
should have the right to tax the railway.
The Opposition have given various estimates of the  value  of   the  exemption,
rating it as worth to the Syndicate from
$5,000,000 to $20,000,000.    Take any
of their figures and their assertions, and
it follows that no Syndicate expecting to
construct the road  would agree  to   be
taxed unless you add to the subsidy just
the amount which the privilege will cost
the   Syndicate,   be  it five   or   twenty
millions.    Now, hon. gentlemen,   I  say
that, if in addition to all that  we  have
done for the North-West,   and  all that
we are now doing for  that country, we
should   go   down    to  our  constituents
(descendants   of   those  who     endured
such hardships in  settling the  country)
and say,   - You who  have  taxed  yourselves to provide railways in  your own
provinces, and spent so many millions in
the North-West to open up that territory
bj a railway, have, by our last Act, been
called upon to  provide  five to twenty
millions more that the people who go in
there may have the right  to  tax  that
railway to which you  have  contributed
so many millions," we would deserve to
be driven out by  the  constituencies  to
which we returned.    But men of spirit,
desiring to go into  the  North-West  to
make homes for themselves, if they know
anything  of   the  difficulties  that have
been encountered in  the  settlement  of
these older provinces, would not ask us
to subject ourselves  to additional  taxation in order to  give  them  the  right,
when they go there, to tax the road  that
carries them in.    They would not ask to
be   " borne  on   downy beds   of ease,"
whilst   so   many   have    trodden  " the
thorny paths."    The  proposition is  not
only that we should advance  the money
to construct the railroad, that the settler
may go in on  a Pullman  car, with  all
the luxuries and comforts of civilization
jsurrounding him, but that we should increase our burdens to give the settler the
right to tax the roadbed and rolling stock
which furnishes those comforts and luxuries ; aye, and they tell  us that, unless
we do, the settlers will not go in — that
it will debar  many.    Well, hon. gentle
men, let them stay out.    The- men  who
would not go in there unless  they had
such   a   right   are not fit to settle   a
new country ; they are  men who would
be no good to the North-West, or to
the   world   at   large.    Had  such   men
lived in ancient times  they would  not
have taken a step towards the  promised
land unless they had Moses under heavy
bonds to provide them   with  quail  and
manna for all time.    But the Opposition
have piled up their millions for naught.
It has been shown elsewhere, in an admirable speech by Mr. Rykert, that this
objection is a trifling one ; that the taxes
would only be a fractional sum that could
be obtained, taking the rate of taxation existing in Ontario.    But as objections melt
away one after another, and the weakness
of them becomes more apparent, newobjec-
tions are started up.    One hon. gentleman actually made  the  objection  that
settlers  would  not go in because   the
Company would not keep up their share
of the fences — that this great work of
constructing a highway  to  the  North-
West, for the opening up and settlement
of that great country, was not to be gone
on with because the fences were not to
be constructed,  or of a proper height!
It is too ludicrous to be talked about.    I
almost felt like quoting that expression
which has become historical in connection
with the same North-West,  " take away
that blawsted fence,"and I hope hon. gentlemen opposite will cease to bring forward such nonsensical utterances.
Hon. Mr. HAYTHORNE — I beg
that the hon. gentleman's words will
be submitted to the decision of the
Speaker; is the hon. gentleman entitled
to accuse a member of this House of
speaking nonsense 1
Hon. Mr. McLELAN —- Hon. gentlemen, I withdraw the expression entirely;
it may be a mere difference of opinion,
and I will withdraw my opinion in the
matter. But, in addition to all these
objections, a cry has been heard " do not
build a through line" At one time we
are told that the value of the land is se
great that, taking it at the valuation set
upon it by hon.  gentlemen themselves, 9.9
we will be enabled to construct
half a dozen railways; but then
they come down to the position, " You
should not build the line all the way
through, because we are too poor, and a
better line can be had that will give
more traffic at a much less cost, and saving a great deal of land — the line to the
Sauit." And the hon. gentlemen
strengthen their position somewhat by
quoting the utterances of many members
of this House and elsewhere, respecting
the advantages that would accrue to the
oountry from connection with the Sault.
But these utterances were given in this
House and elsewhere on the supposition
that we were not in a position, financially,
to construct an all-rail route, and that it
would be years before we would be. The
question was raised here last year, and 1
remember having troubled the House
with a few remarks on that occasion.
The position I took was, that it was so
important to the welfare of this whole
Dominion, and to the North-West
itself, that it was better not
to be over hasty, but to husband
■our resources and work for an all rail
route. And, hon. gentlemen, as we learn
more of the extent of that country, my
opinion is strengthened, and I believe
that the impression will grow and
strengthen upon the minds of the public,
as they learn more and more of that vast
•ountry, of the great importance of having through connection with it upon our
own territory. Make that highway upon
our own territory a great channel of
•ommerce between the west and the older
provinces, and you may rest easy as to
any further connections. If there is a
trade at the Sault that is desirous of
ooming through Canada, when we have
. built this great highway, and the trade of
ihe>N©rth-West is borne down over it,that
eonnection will be made from the Sault;
and the lesser stream . will flow into the
greater, as lesser streams always flow
into larger. But, hon. gentlemen, suppose you abandon the Eastern connection,
and you make the road to the Sault and
eonnect with a line through American ter-
ntory, and your means of communication
are through American territory, what
is the result 1 Why, that all the immigrants you start for that country (if not
earned away by American agencies), are
so poisoned by the stories they hear of
the value of the American soil, and the
advantages of settling in the TJnited
States,in passing through, that the probabilities are that they become dissatisfied
with the North-West, and go back to the
TJnited States — led away by the impression made upon them when they
were passing through. An hon. gentleman, the ex-Premier, gave his experience
in a speech delivered February 21st,
1877.    He says: —
"The stream or- travel ran through the
TJnited States, causing a loss of a greater or
less p'ercentage to us, both in immigrants and
others, for a number of Mennonites, who were
sent over the American route to the North-
West, had been induced by speculative agents
to settle in the States ; and it did seem to him
desirable as anything could be so, that, as soon
as it could be done at a cost proportioned to
the value of the work,, they should be able to-
take the stream of travel to the North-West
through our own territory."
Hon. Mr. SCOTT ■
Bay Branch.
Via the Thunder
Hon. Mr. McLELAN — Via the Thunder Bay Branch 1
Hon. Mr. SCOTT — That is what he
refers to there.
Hon. Mr. McLELAN — But that line
will be closed during part of the year.
Hon. Mr. SCOTT —Not while the
emigrants are coming.
Hon. Mr. McLELAN —Whilst very
many will come, and whilst there will be
at alb times a large travel to aud from
the North-West, this, being all rail,
would be easier than via Thu nder Bay,
and would be mainly used.
Hon. Mr. SCOTT — The hon. gentleman knows that Mr. Mackenzie was defending the expenditure on the Thunder
Bay Branch becauso emigrants to that
country would go through to Thunder
Bay by Lake Superior. Immigrants do
not come in January, February and
Hon. Mr. McLELAN—My hon.
friend proposes to make a line to the
Sault, and, connecting with American
railways, to use that as a highway to
the North-West.
Hon. Mr. SCOTT — During the winter only, until we can build the other. 23
Hon. Mr. McLELAN — Do you propose to take up the track in summer 1
If not, it remains connected with the
American roads in summer, and, either
summer or winter, the man who gets on
a railway here to travel to the North-
West will remain on that road and travel
by the American lines1.'
Hon. Mr. SCOTT — You force them
for ten years, at all events, to pass through
the TJnited States.
Hon. Mr. McLELAN — But you ask
us to force them for all time to travel
through American territory.
Hon. Mr. SCOTT — I never suggested
anything of tho j kind.
Hon. Mr. McLELAN — I say, if we
reject this proposition, and act upon the
suggestion of the hon. gentleman, and
construct the road to the Sault, it is
tantamount to declaring that the route
shall be for all time through the TJnited
Hon. Mr. SCCTT — Such a suggestion
was never offered.
Hon. Mr. McLELAN — It is nothing
else. Suppose the hon. gentleman should
succeed in getting two millions of people
in1 the North-West, he does not mean to
say that they, or any large proportion,
would travel by land and water via
Thunder Bay and the Lake, even in
summer ? The main portion of travel
will be, and must of necessity be, through
the TJnited States lines, and I say, if you
succeed in getting the number of settlers
into the North-West that the hon. gentleman expects (and it is not expected that
this great railway shall pay working expenses until there are two or three
millions of people there), you have that
population in the North-West, and four or
five millions in the older provinces, and
the means of communication between the
two populations would be mainly
through American territory. I say, so
lono- as you have that, you never can
bring about  that  feeling of homogenity
 of   oneness — that    is   desirable in
people living under the same laws.
Previous to the opening of the Intercolonial Railway, we of the Maritime Prov-
iitices knew something of that. We know
that this passing through the TJnited
States to reach one part of the Dominion
from another tends to keep us compara
tive strangers in sympathy and interest;
and it was not until the Intercolonial
Railway was built, and we travelled
through our own territory from one point
to another, that we felt that we were one
people, and should work to accomplish
one end. I say, therefore, that so long
as you make the main thoroughfare of
travel and traffic with the North-West
through the TJnited States, you will have
the feelings and interests of the millions
who may go there to settle drawn and
centred towards the TJnited States. It
has often been pointed out that the great
leading railways which bound the Northern and Western States together commercially, united them in patriotic
sentiment; and so with the South,
— the sentiment of each following
the lines of interest — the railways
of the north, binding together t he greater
power, preserved the Union. I say that
it is worthy an effort to get that great
highway built, which shall bring about
this oneness of sentiment throughout the
Dominion,more especially when the lands
of the North-West can be made to bear
at least half the cost of the undertaking.
The hon. ex-Secretary of State has referred to the amount that we are giving
to the Syndicate, and he has added to
that the cost of the work already constructed or under contract, and he has
taken the extreme figures, including the
surveys — all expenditures and all liabilities, amounting to $36,619,000, from
which he deducts $1,000,000, leaving
$35,000,000. Now, that includes the
cost of all the surveys that have been
made. 1 do not think it is fair, under all
the circumstances, to charge that against
the Syndicate.
Hon.   Mr.   SCOTT — That  was  the
agreement with the Allan Company,that
they were to recoup the Government for
the surveys made prior to the contract.
Hon. Mr. McLELAN — 1 am only
speaking of the contract now, and what
is the present position of things. The
TJnited States spent very large sums in
exploratory surveys in the country over
which the Union Pacific Railway was
built long before that line was constructed, and every railway that is run through
a settled country has the advantage of
the expenditure for surveys made at the
expense of the Government.    I think it 24
Is entirely fair to deduct from the sum
which the hon. gentleman puts down as
the cost of the surveys.
Hon. Mr. SCOTT —The Syndicate
:gets the benefit of it.
Hon. Mr. McLELAN — So does every
Tailway company that runs through a
settled country get the benefit of the
'surveys made at the expense of the
Hon. Mr. SCOTT —But the line is
actually located through the prairie section.
Hon. Mr. McLELAN — Yes, and it
was changed by the Government because
it was considered that the location w as
unwise and unsuited to the country.
Would you charge against this Syndicate
the cost of locating the line over the
muskegs north of Lake Manitoba 1 If
the hon. gentleman will not permit me
to take from the amount the whole cost
of the surveys, I think he will have
generosity enough to allow me to take at
least the cost of that location more
especially, as we, in this Chamber, pro-
. tested in our strongest terms against
it. We       never      could      rightly
understand why that location was made;
why it was taken away from the portion
of the province fit for settlement. Hon.
gentlemen from Manitoba asked for a
committee'in the session of 1876, and we
had an inquiry, and it was shown
that, looking to the colonization of
the country and the strengthening of
our position, it was right and proper to
take the line south of Lake Manitoba.
It will be remembered by hon. gentle
men who were on that Committee, that
tha position taken by the Government
was that the northern route was shorter;
but there is another reason given
later by the hon. gentleman who was
Premier at that time, which will be found
in the Commons Debates of 1877. It
was that the right of way would be
cheaper where located.    He says : —
" Advantages were no doubt to be gained
by running the road from Rat Portage in a
more southerly route, and reaching Red River
20 miles further up, near the City of Winnipeg.
Then this route passed through a comparatively settled portion of the country, some of
it, at all events; and it would also pass
through the centre of population.   Apart from
the engineering difficulties which presented themselves, and to which he would refer •
presently, there were other disadvantages.
One of these disadvantages was that the route
would pass through a place where the price of
land was very high. The Government found
themselves, even at Thunder Bay — a place
which was still more recently settled — obliged
to pay for every inch of land, for two miles
along the river bank, at a cost in the neighborhood of $50,000. On the line they had
adopted in Manitoba and the North-West very
little of the land was in thehands of private
Here we are in effect told that the road
was carried away from the population
and from the land fit for settlement and
located over the swamps and muskegs
north of Lake Manitoba, because the
cost of right of way was so great at
Thunder Bay; because the hon. gentleman was incompetent to protect himself
from the Philistines, his friends, and paid
over $50,000 for what was not worth as
many cents. When the hon. Senator,
now Minister of Inland Revenue, was
ventilating this matter before Parliament,
we never supposed that we were doing
an incalculable damage to this country,
and to the Province of Manitoba by that
exposure. We did not think that we
were frightening the Government from
the valuable lands of Manitoba, and
driving them to locate the road where it
could only be done in winter over muskegs
"measureless to man," so that they might
not fall again into the hands of the Philistines as they did at Kaministiquia.
The hon. ex-Secretary of State has drawn
me away from the position I was taking,
that the cost of the surveys should be deducted from the gross cost. Then, taking
off the amount that was estimated by the
engineers for the equipment of the road,
and included in the gross sum, and the
Canada Central, and we will have, as
given elsewhere, $28,000,000 as the cost
of the road that is now being done. But,
hon. gentlemen, when you give them that
property, which has cost this country
$28,000,000, it does not follow that it is
worth that amount to the Syndicate, or
that it would cost them anything like
$28,000,000 to produce it — all of it that
will be of utility when you figure up the
different items that have been wasted,
and worse than wasted. I see an hon.
friend smile; I know that he is thinking
of the millions of dollars lost in the hasty
purchase of steel  rails — of the money
\* thrown away at Fort Frances — of the
purchase of the Neebing Hotel, and of
the thousands expended on the Georgian
Bay Branch; and then we have the cost
of forty miles of railway that the Syndicate would not build. The instructions
of the late Government to their engineers was to locate the line on the
straightest and shortest route to
the Pacific. They were so hasty
to get to the Pacific that they
they took an air line for it, regardless of
the obstacles in the way, and to do this,
-and, as I have shown in the extract I
have read, to get away from the settlements — away from valuable lands of
Manitoba — they 'made the crossing at
■Selkirk, necessitating the construction of
32 miles to Winnipeg and 18 more from
Winnipeg to intersect the main line,
making forty miles which could have
been saved had they crossed at Winnipeg
direct, throwing the line south of Lake
Manitoba without the bend it now has
when put south by the present Government. Then, in the location of the road
up to Selkirk, it was given in evidence
before a Committee of this House that,
had the line been located more southerly
and direct to Winnipeg, a saving of from
$300,000 to $400,000 would have
been effected. Estimates of both lines
were made. The estimate for the
southern line was about $360,000 less
than the estimate for the line
built. The actual expenditure on the
line that was constructed was double the
estimate. Now, doubling both estimates,
you have a difference of $720,000, nearly
three-quarters of a million, between the
two lines. Take off all these expenditures, and you have not left much more
than $20,000,000, and I am quite satisfied that, if you ask the Syndicate to do
this work for $20,000,000, they would
be only too glad to do it, instead of being
charged $28,000,000. But, with all these
deductions that must be made for useless
expenditure, is it not amazing that the
hon. gentlemen opposite who were guilty
of this mismanagement should be desirous
to continue the construction of the line
by Government? They must be
looking and hoping to come to the Treasury Benches, and to resume the management of public works. If they look
At the history of the past, and at their
mismanagement of this great work, they
should see how fatal Canadian Pacific
Railway construction would be to them.
It has been said that the National Policy
caused the death of the late Administration. That is true, but if they had had
another life, that would have been taken
by the Pacific Railway. If they
had had nine lives, every life would
have been forfeited by their mismanagement of that great work. No
word of warning or counsel would be
accepted; blindly and persistently they
blundered on. The representatives of
Manitoba protested against the location;
to a committee of Parliament they showed the injury it was doing to that
Province and the whole North-Wes^,
and, therefore, to the Dominion, but
without effect. Other works, the Georgian Bay Branch, and the Rainy River
improvements, were shown as clear as
sunlight to be, the first unnecessary, and
the latter, utterly valueless. The hon.
gentleman who presides ao the head of
this House made it as clear as possible
that the construction of that work
at Fort Frances was not worth
the paper upon which the order
to go on with it had been written;
that even when it would be constructed
there were eight or nine other portages
on the route, over which freight could
not possibly pass. Although all this was
made as apparent and as clear as sunlight, we had the Government persisting
in that work; year after year they voted
additional thousands in spite of the
remonstrances of the country, and they
went on determined at least to spend the
public money. Why, hon. gentlemen,
Mark Twain's blue jay in its frantic at
tempts to fill with acorns a knot hole in
the roof of a great empty house was mildness and moderation, aye, it was wisdom
and provident statesmanship compared
with Premier Mackenzie's determined and
frantic efforts to construct the Pacifie
Railway by digging a hole at Fort
Frances, one hundred miles away i from
the line of road. Ah, hon. gentlemen, it
is not the money we think of ; it is not
the hundreds of thousands of dollars that
were wasted in this manner, but it is the
mortification attendant upon it, of being
made the laughing stock of the world.
You who have read that blue jay
story in Twain's " Tramp Abroad," wifl
remember that when   he  finally   aban- 26
doned the work and, exhausted, leaned
wp against the chimney and commenced
swearing at his failure in the strongest
blue jay vernacular, that all the blue jays
in the neighborhood gathered round to examine the mystery, and when one old jay,
perched on the'half opened door, looking in,
saw a ton of acorns scattered over thefloor
the mystery was exploded, and for years
the hard worked jay was laughed at by
all the feathered tribe, except one owl
from the Maritime Provinces that never
could see the joke. And so, hon. gentle
men, it is in this case; the mortification
attendant upon the blunders connected
with the construction of this work is
greater than our regret for the loss of the
money. I am glad to know, hon. gentlemen, that some person, for some reason
best known to himself, is filling that
hole with, sawdust. I am glad it will be
put out of sight, and, I hope, forgotten.
But there comes the thought that in the
distant future someone may stumble upon
it. What a mystery it will be then for
the world. What wise opinions will be
formed as to what that hole was
excavated for. The scientific world will
be deeply interested in it, and learned
reports to societies will be made and
many opinions given by savants as to
what the hole was intended for;
and then comparisons will be drawn
between the bole builders and the
mound builders, and the conclusion probably reached that they were in many
ways closely identical. Is it any wonder
that the Government was defeated and
killed at the last election 1 If there had
been no National Policy to engage public
attention, I say they would have been
killed outright by their railway mismanagement. The remnant that returned
here from the elections must have known
and felt that they were dead on every
question to which public attention had
been called, and with ungrateful hearts
and hasty hands they laid away the old
leader who for five years had labored as
scarcely ever man worked for that party.
They acknowledged by their act that the
old Mackenzie party had ceased to exist,
was dead and buried ; but, in their haste
to form a new one, they forgot to give it
* friendly epitaph. They left it to the
•old charity of their opponents to record
their misdeeds, each one to his fancy,
just   as   the   particular    deed    which
took possession of his mind migfite
lead. For example [my hon. frierttl
from Belleville who gave a good
deal of atten&on to> that hasty
purchase of steel Fails'; that involved the country in nSfiions of dollars
of loss, would probably refer- to that
transaction in the epitaph Then my
hon. friend the Minister of Inland Revenue, who called our attention to that
famous solitude on the far-off banks of
that quiet, calm, slow-flowing river, that
tortuous, ever winding, ever silting,
ever sand-barred Kaministiquia, would
'briHg in the transaction connected with
the Neebing Hotel and town plot purchase. 'Or, if these two gentlemen would
unite their powers in a kind of duet, they
would give us something like this :—
" Stark, stiff and cold as a rusty steel rail it
Where Kamin   tiquia jobbers helped "outlay
it, their stolen pennies on its eyes."
And thus, one after another, would the
huge blunders, the marvellous mistakes
of that Administration fall'into line when
given by an opponents pen. They themselves were in haste to form a new organization and take a new leader. They
have the leader, but the principles and
policy are wanting. A leader without
armor or uniform, nothing but a few
old fig leaves, gathered at Aurora,
in his hand, but so dry that
on the first attempt to make them into a
covering they crumbled into dust and
left him politically naked — naked and
not ashamed. Nevertheless, hon. sentle-
men, they are proud of their leader, and
so are we all ; proud of him as a great
athlete in the intellectual gymnasium ;
proud of him as we are of any of Canada^
sons who excel in any specialty ; proud
of the man who wins in the physical
gymnasium; proud of the man; proad
we are of Hanlan, and perhaps the pride
we have in this leader is something akin
to it. But the man in the gymnasium
who can out-leap his competitors, or can
balance himself most adroitly on the
tight-rope; the man who scores the
highest at billiards, or show the greatest
science at lacrosse, are not the men who
are foremost in contributing to the
world's progress. Hanlarr. in his boat on
the waters has not yet found his
equal,, but. the Trade   and Navigation 27
Returns do not mention his name.
If the world depended upon these
men it would go backwards; if we
waited for these men to sow the seed and
gather the sheaves,, there would be no
" corn in Egypt;" and because this leader
may be able to outvault others in the
intellectual gymnasium, and balance himself upon a sophism or a fallacy finer
than a split hair, it does not follow that
he is the best calculated for that legislation and that administration of the government that will tend to the happiness
and security of the people, and the prosperity and progress of this country. The
South Sea islander, naked and astride of
his catamaran is said to exhibit marvels
of. skill and dexterity as he dashes through
the surf and rides upon the storm tossed
waves ; but it does not follow that he
should be given command of the Pacific
squadron, or put in control of a valuable
merchantman ; nor does it follow that,
because this leader, when the storm of
debate is highest and wildest, can fling
aside the surf and ride on the highest
wave, that he should be put in charge of
the ship of State. He has been placed
in that ship as one of the crew, but all
his labors are given to hinder her progress. No matter upon what course the
ship sails, he endeavors to create alarm in
the mind of all; always danger ahead.
I remember, hearing him in connection
with..this great Pacific Railway question
a year ago, striving to create alarm, and
have the ship headed for Kansas, and
I could not help being reminded
©f one of our Nova Scotia captains,
a very clever young man, but full of
crotchets concerning the art of navigation, who spent nearly all his time at sea
trying to discover some better system of
navigation than that which existed, leav-
ing his .ship in charge of the officers
at {certain times, getting from them
the courses and distances that the ship
had • made, to extend it on his chart,
which he kept open on his table. On
doing so on one occasion, he rushed on
deck shouting wildly, " Hard down
your helm ! Hard down ! Ready about!!
We are going to destruction —- right on
the reefs in amongst' the islands ! ! "
Quickly, the ship was put about, and
stood off and on, beating about for two
days, with every man on board on the
lookout for the  danger.    At the end of
two days, the officer went to the captain
and said he thought there must be a
mistake, and he had better put the ship
on her course again. " Mistake," said
the captain, "no mistake; we are in a
very critical position, destruction right
ahead ! Look at the chart! Look at the
dangerous reefs and the cluster of
islands right in our course ! " The officer
looked at the chart and replied: " Why,
'captain, there has been a fly on your
chart, and that dangerous reef and
cluster of islands is merely the tracks of
the fly." So, hon. gentlemen, that pet fly
of the late Government; that fly, which
for five years was sheltered and fattened
on the wheel of Grit policy, but driven
off in 1878, has settled upon the new
leader's chart, and the danger that he
fancies and alarms him, is only the track
of the fly. If the hon. gentlemen forming the Opposition anticipate ever coming to office; if they hope ever to manage
the public business of this country, they
should surely assist to have this work
taken out of Government hands;
for if Mr. Mackenzie with all his remarkable industry and doing " his incompetent best," lamentably failed, depend
upon it there will not be success under a
leader with a fly on his chart. Before
closing, I should refer to the charge that
has been made, that in this contract the
Government sacrifices the National Policy ; that policy which the country declared 'should be adopted ; that policy
which the Opposition so fought against.
But I think it has been shown that there
is no danger in this respect. I am sure
that if I saw any danger of sacrificing
that policy in the contract which is now
before us, I should oppose that contract.
I was one of the first who advocated that
policy in this House. When the late
Hon. George Brown returned, in 1875,
from Washington with the preposition to
throw open our country to the American
manufacturer, free of duty — to have reciprocity in manufactures — I took the
opportunity to express my strong disapproval [of the proposition. Yery few at
that time were prepared to go so far as I
did in the line of the policy adopted by
the party, and accepted by the people in
1878, and strong as were my opinions
then as to the value of such a policy to this
young and growing country, they are, if
possible, strengthened and confirmed by 28
the experience the country has had under
that policy ; and, rather than have it sacrificed, as it is claimed it is by this contract I should prefer to abandon the
contract and postpone the work
indefinitely. Anxious as I am for the
success and prosperity of the North-West,
I am more desirous of the welfare of the
older provinces. But, hon. gentlemen,
the National Policy is not in danger.
The amount of material admitted under
the contract, duty free, is trifling compared to the enormous amount of work it
will give to all our industries. The expenditure 'within the Dominion by the
Syndicate will reach at least forty millions for rolling stock, equipment,*mate-
rial for construction, maintenance of
workmen and the multitude of incidentals connected with so vast a work.' The
manufacturers and producers of the Dom-.
inion will be more certain to have all this
general work than if the road was being
built by Government directly, because
the Government could at any time order
in as much of the rolling stock or other
material, free of duty, as they chose, but
the Syndicate must have all, except the
few articles named, manufactured within
the Dominion, which will help forward
our own industries amazingly. And then
the Government, relieved of all the weight
of care and anxiety which this work has
imposed, engrossing all their time and
attention, will be able to devote
more thought to the general business of
the country — to study the workings of
this National Policy — to fit the garment
to the growing shoulders, and the better
ensure our success. But it does seem to
me very curious, very marvellous, that
•the men who so stoutly opposed the protection of home industries should now be
so solicitous for them — so sensitive and
fearful lest the National Policy should be
sacrificed. It is not often that the boy
is more careful of his garment than is the
parent   who,  at   great  care,  and   toil
and   cost,  provided   it   for
so    it    seems    to   me   in
and they such naughty boys.
kicked, and struggled,  and
wouldn't have it; they declared the gi
ment old andsecond hand, out of style, out
him;   but
this    case,
How they
pouted, and
of date, thrown off by the Mother Country, and they would be ashamed to wear it.
Foolish lads ! they wished to rank with
the advanced politicians of Britain;
forgetting that a principle or policy
which one country has outgrown may be
of the utmost value to one younger and
less developed, just as in this young
country, where household economy is so
closely studied, there are thousands of
lads and lasses clad in garments laid
aside by parent or older member of the
family, remodelled to suit younger shoulders ; thousands thus clad receiving
warmth, vitality and vigor of constitution, and all the more worthy of the
manhood and the womanhood to which
they aspire, and to which they are advancing, because of no foolish shame of
the garments which to them have proved
so valuable. Often were we taunted
with the cry that this mantle
of Protection was old and unfit
for use, but we have worn it,
and its value and power are becoming
known and appreciated. Senators, I
read in ancient sacred history that when
the chariot of fire and the horses of fire
had removed the old prophet Elijah, that
Elisha, knowing the value of his old
mantle, did not hesitate to take it up.
And I read, furthermore, that that mantle, though worn by one and cast aside,
and then taken up by another, had its old
power. Elisha came to Kedron, and,
with the mantle, smote upon its waters,
and they parted hither and thither, and
on dry, firm ground he passed to the
other side. So with this mantle of protection. Although worn by England,
until she attained so high a state
of perfection in the mechanical and manufacturing industries, and so great prosperity, as no longer to require it; yet
now, in the hands of our Government,
it has its old power, for they, smiting
upon the stagnant waters of depression
which have so long overspread this land,
they are parting hither and thither, and
our people with this trade policy established, and this great national highway
secured, shall henceforth tread on fin*
ground, and pass over to prosperity.    


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