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the magnificent project in which they were engaged, the Grand Trunk Company were obliged to seek an Atlantic outlet for the vast products of Canada through a foreign State and compelled to lease the line to Portland. What has been the result ? Nova Scotia has expended nearly five millions of dollars in the construction of railways, which, local and isolated in their character, afford neither stimulus to her trade nor intercourse with her neighbours, while for many years to come her revenue must be largely taxed to meet the payment of the interest on the debt thus created.
“The position of New Brunswick is but little better, although, perhaps, not quite so discouraging. Canada, notwithstanding the investment by the Government of more than twenty millions of dollars, occupies the precarious and dependent position of having her whole trade for a large portion of the year subject to the caprice of a rival and not always very friendly power.
the British Government is to blame for allowing such a state of things to continue, and blindly as they have refused to regard the great Imperial interests involved, the neglect of which may at any moment require an outlay on their part infinitely greater than any aid required to have accomplished this work, no one can for a moment suppose it could have existed had any tie united these colonies with a common bond.
“It is to be hoped that the folly of expecting any large results from local and isolated railways is already fully demonstrated to both Nova Scotia and New Brunswick, and that it has now become a first consideration with them to direct their
attention to the means by which both may be relieved from the consequences of a large debt, incurred for works not only unproductive of any directly remunerative results but also unattended by any substantial advantage to our trade or commercial importance. The conviction must have forced itself upon the public mind that we must extricate ourselves from these difficulties by obtaining connection with the railways of Canada and the United States by one or other of the routes proposed. Much has already been done towards achieving that result. The three colonies most deeply interested have not only jointly pressed a common scheme on the attention of the British Government, convincing the Derby Administration of its importance, but also enlisted the support of a large number of public men and commercial communities in the enterprise, resulting in the application to Parliament of the Boards of Trade of Liverpool and Glasgow, and other influential bodies, to carry out the scheme proposed by the Colonial Delegation of 1858.
"The visit of the Prince of Wales and the eminent men who composed the suite of His Royal Highness must have impressed them forcibly with the necessity and importance of an intercolonial railway - a work in which the Duke of Newcastle took a deep interest when Secretary for the Colonies on a former occasion.
“Canada having completed the line from Quebec to Révire du Loup; Nova Scotia, from Halifax to Truro; and New Brunswick, nearly a hundred miles of the line through this province—if the St. John Valley route or the St. Andrews and
Quebec be adopted-a comparatively small outlay would complete the communication. The extent of the work is much reduced; the Government of Britain and the British public are interested to an extent that, with the experience of the past few months, cannot fail to convince the most sceptical; the necessities of these lower provinces invite our hearty co-operation; while the difficulties in which the Grand Trunk is involved will but render the Canadian Government and the shareholders on both sides the Atlantic more anxious than before to carry out the original enterprise.
“ The night of darkness that now enshrouds the prospects of these colonies in connection with their railway operations will be but the harbinger of a bright and glorious morning of advancement and prosperity; and in a brief period we shall possess a continuous line, extending from Halifax to Windsor opposite Detroit, and by the American line some four hundred miles beyond that point, through Wisconsin and Illinois, to the frontier of Iowa.
“The limited time at our disposal has only permitted me to notice in passing a few of the results likely to flow from a union of the colonies, and I fear that I have already trespassed too largely upon your kind indulgence. Permit me, therefore, in closing, to remind you that the advantage which would result from such a union is not a matter of opinion, as it has already been demonstrated by the union between Upper and Lower Canada.
“Let us, then, extend the same wholesome
principle—uniting our common interests and consolidating the whole by strengthening each other.
Possessing as we do the healthiest climate in the world, with an immense area of fertile soil, and abounding in the richest mineral resources, all we require are wise political arrangements to attract population, capital and skill.
“Our climate is more healthy than that of England; the fertility of the soil is unsurpassed by her; our geographical position relative to the New World is the same as she occupies to the Old; our equally magnificent harbours present the same facilities for commerce; while the iron and coal, and the limestone—the possession of which has rendered her the greatest manufacturing mart of Europe-here abound to any extent in close proximity and of the most excellent quality. Who can doubt that under these circumstances, with such a confederation as these five provincesto which, at a future day, the great Red River and Saskatchewan country, now in possession of the Hudson Bay Company, and British Columbia, on the Pacific coast, would be added—as would give us the political position due to our extent of area, our resources, and our intelligent population-untrammelled either by slavery or the ascendency of any dominant Church-presenting almost the only country where the great principles of civil and religious equality really exist, British America, stretching from the Atlantic to the Pacific, would in a few years exhibit to the world a great and powerful organisation, with British institutions, British sympathies, and British feelings, bound indissolubly to the Throne of Eng