April 15, 1901


The MINISTER OF FINANCE (Hon. W. S. Fielding) moved that the House go again into Committee of Supply.


Hon. E. G.@

PRIOR (Victoria, B.C.) Before you leave the Chair, Sir, I wish to make some remarks on a matter that I have very much at heart, and which is of great importance to the country at large, and I trust that hon. members on both sides, although they may not iu the past have taken much interest in this subject, will give me a patient hearing and due consideration to what I have to say. I refer to

the necessity for government pensions to the headquarters staff and the permanent corps of militia. It is now eight years since I first brought this matter before the House, and on several occasions since I have again introduced it to the attention of lion, members, but I am Sony to say that the subject has hitherto received but scanty consideration by either the government or the House. Now, however, there seems to be a very different feeling towards our Canadian militia, and I think this a favourable opportunity to again agitate this question.

Not only do we see a different feeling hero but also in Great Britain, where the volunteers and militia are looked upon to-day very differently from days gone by. We have seen in the last eighteen months the colonies of Canada and Australia and the other dependencies of Great Britain coming to the assistance of the mother country in her South African trouble. We have seen thousands of our most stalwart young men flying to the standard and volunteering to serve their Queen in the militia. I believe some 40,000 men volunteered to go to Soutli Africa from this country, but, of course, only a very small proportion were taken. I feel confident, therefore, that to-day this matter will receive more consideration than it did in the past, and I have no doubt the government are prepared to view it in a far more favourable spirit than in years gone by. As we know, the highest commands in regiments that we sent to South Africa were given to the officers from the permanent corps, which, to my mind, was the correct thing to do. Officers and men from the permanent corps went out to South Africa to uphold the honour of Canada, and right well did they do it. The names of Col. Otter, Buchan, Drury, Lessard and Pelletier and many others are household words not only in Canada but over the British Empire to-day. These were good men and true and deserving of all the credit given them and of the best treatment at the hands of the government. There is also another body of men which we must not forget, and that is the officers composing the headquarters staff in Ottawa. We all know that no army can be sent into the field unless thoroughly organized. It is no use sending battalions, however, well officered and however well trained unless the headquarters Mr. PRIOR.

staff have seen that the transport and commissariat and everything connected with the troops are in good running order before the troops start out. I am glad to say that when our troops were sent to South Africa the headquarters staff, considering the little practice they had had and the little time at their disposal, did very well indeed. The headquarters staff one might describe as the boiler for the engine of war. The engine cannot run unless the boiler is in good trim, and no army can be sent out properly equipped and organized unless the headquarters staff is proficient. In speaking thus of the permanent corps, I have no desire to belittle the officers and men of the active militia, who were largely in the majority and did equally well. We all know that many men in the active militia left their business and professions, gave up all, to go and serve their Queen in South Africa, some even giving up their commissions and taking places in the ranks. We have in this House an hon. gentleman who sits on my right, the hon. member for North Victoria (Mr. Hughes), who went out and did his duty manfully and well. We have also men on both sides of the House, whose sons have upheld the honour of Canada, as we expected them to do, and therefore I do not wish, in speaking only of the permanent corps, to be considered as in any wTay belittling the services rendered by the active militia. But as it is concerning the permanent corps that my remarks to-day are particularly addressed, I have of course to confine my argument to their case.

In as few words as possible, I wish to explain what the permanent corps is. The permanent corps of Canada was started in 1871, when two companies of regulars were appointed as a nucleus for the forming of a school of instruction for the active militia. They now are composed of a thousand men of different branches of the service, infantry, artillery and cavalry. And their particular duty is to form schools and to train instructors, to instruct the ordinary city and country corps of the active militia. Now, the reason I am asking that this pension should be brought in is, that these officers and men are, to all intents and purposes, regulars, just as much as the regulars of Great Britain or France or Germany, and they get less pay than do the

regulars in any other portion of the British Empire-so I believe. They certainly get very much less than do the men of the regular army of the United States. I have here a list giving the pay of the different armies and the permanent corps of Canada. I find that the privates and troopers of the permanent corps of Canadian infantry get 40 cents a day. If a man conducts himself well, he gets from 2 cents to 7 cents per day good-conduct pay. If he has the fortune to become a sergeant, his pay rises to 80 cents per day. But, it never goes higher ; and when he retires, after fifteen or twenty years' continual service, there is no pension for him. Now, the mounted police, who, I am glad to say, are as fine a body of men as ever sat in saddle, are on a different footing altogether. They have a pension ; they are on a somewhat similar footing as our civil servants are with reference to superannuation. For instance, a constable who has completed twenty years, when he retires receives a pension of $102.20 per

annum. If he has completed twenty-four years, he receives a pension of $132.86 per annum. If he has completed twenty-five years or thirty years, he receives a pension of $188.85. That is not very much, truly ; but, it is something for a man to look forward to when he has spent the best years of his life soldiering. The non-commissioned officers' pensions in the mounted police are larger. A staff sergeant receives $1 a day pay, and after twenty years' service retires on a pension of 60 cents a day, or $219 a year. So, it will be seen that they are on an altogether different footing from, and on a more favourable footing, than the noncommissioned officers and men of the permanent corps, though they are called upon to do very largely the same kind of work. Now, in regard to the officers. I have here a list of the British and United States regulars, the Canadian permanent corps and the North-west mounted police. 4fe.t the risk of tiring the House, I would like to give some of these pays and pensions :




Superintendent N. W.@

Mounted Police.



United States. Canada... . Canada

Pay and Pension. After 15 Years' Service, per month. After 20 Years' Service, per month.

$ cts. $ cts

Pay 133 25 133 25Pension 101 25 121 50Pay 325 00 333 33Pension 243 75 250 00Pay 120 00 120 00Pension Nil. Nil.Pay 210 80 216 80Pension 64 118 86 64Pay..



Pension 84 60 84 60United States Gratuity 87,776 195 00 162 50 105 00 Must retire before 20 years' service as Captain. 210 00 175 00 105 00


Superintendent N. W.@

Mounted Police. Pension Pay.. .. Nil. 116 66 Nil. 116 66 46 64

Pension 34 98

British Pay.: Pension 47 40 Gratuity 7,776 60

United States. Pay

Pension 162 50 121 87 175 00 131 25Canada Pay

Pension 75 00 Nil. 75 00 Nil.


Inspector N.

\V. Mounted Police .. . Canada Pay Pension 83 33 24 99 83 32 33 33

Now, Mr. Speaker, that Is tlie table for tlie infantry. The cavalry and artillery, in all these services, get a little more, as they are looked upon as a more scientific branch. In regard to the district staff, I may point out that the officer who used to be known as the deputy adjutant general, now district officer commanding, receives in Canada a minimum of $1,700 per annum. An officer holding the same relative position in the British service receives $3,500 per annum, with an age retiring allowance. That, I think, will show that the pay given to our permanent corps is absurdly small as compared with the pay of similar men in the United States, and very much less than the pay in the British service. Now, nobody will say for a moment that our men are in any way inferior. They have proved themselves to be equally as good on the battlefield, in camp or in the office. And my contention is that, this being the case, and as we are now in the growing time in Canada, and as we are told by the government that there is a surplus, now is the time for the government to bring in a pension Bill giving these men what is justly due them.

Now, it may be asked : Why should we be asked to give pensions to these men when they get such salaries as they do ? The answer to that is, that the pay given to these men is not such as to make it possible for them to save anything. Everybody knows- taking the officers first-that an officer must uphold his position, or he is not fit for the position, he must clothe himself well and live as a gentleman, but not extravagantly ; and we all know that when they are in barracks there are certain calls made on them that they cannot get out of. There is a certain amount of entertaining looked for from them, and an officer



A Message was delivered by the Gentleman Usher of the Black Rod, as follows: The Right Honourable the Chief Justice of Canada, Deputy Governor, desires the immediate attention of your Honourable House in the Chamber of the Honourable the Senate. Accordingly, Mr. Speaker, with the House, went up to the Senate Chamber. And having returned, Mr. SPEAKER informed the House that the Right Honourable Deputy Governor had been pleased to give, in His Majesty's name, the Royal Assent to the following Bills An Act relating to the Grand Trunk Railway Company of Canada. An Act respecting the Grand Trunk Railway Company of Canada. An Act respecting the South Ontario Pacific Railway Company. An Act respecting the Orford Mountain Railway Company. An Act further to amend the Canada Evidence Act, 1893. An Act respecting the Supreme Court of the Independent Order of Foresters and Mr. PRIOR. An Act for granting to His Majesty certain sums of money required for defraying certain expenses of the public service for the financial year ending June 30, 1901, and for other purposes relating to the public service.



Edward Gawler Prior

Conservative (1867-1942)

Hon. Mr. PRIOR.

here. Now, I would like to say, while I am on this subject, that the call for men in the British Empire, including Canada, is insignificantly small with what it is in other civilized countries. In France, with a population of 38,000,000, there are 112 soldiers per thousand of the population ; in Germany, with a population of 52,000,000, there are 61 soldiers per thousand of the population ; in Russia, with a population of

129,000,000, they have 27 soldiers per thousand of the population, and in the British Empire, including India, Canada, Australia, and all the British possessions, with a population of 386,000,000, there are only 21 soldiers per thousand of the population. If we were to pay according to our total exports we should pay instead of $2,000,000 odd, $21,000,000, if, according to our total expenditure, $16,000,000, instead of $2,000,000 odd, for the defence of this country. Take It in any way you like, either by population, or exports, or expenditure, or per capita, we are only paying about one-tenth of what other civilized nations expend on defence. As I have said, I do not wish to be an alarmist, but we may be called upon at any moment, suddenly, to take part in what may prove to be a life and death struggle for the British Empire. Things are not going along too smoothly either in the east or in the west, and It behooves us as Canadians to take time by the forelock, and, as Lord Salisbury said in his speech before the Primrose League, ' let every man arm himself for the defence of the country.' There is another thing I would like to call the attention of the hon. Minister of Militia to, and it is that we should be in a position to manufacture our own rifles and our own ammunition. I am fully aware that at the present time we have a cartridge factory at Quebec, a factory which is, I believe, carried on in a very satisfactory manner, so far as it goes, but, I do not think that there is in the possession of Canada anything like sufficient ammunition or the amount of rifles that we should have. I am sorry to say that we cannot take the British Isles as an example to follow, for I find, in a most excellent article that I read in the Fortnightly Review some time ago under the heading of ' An Unarmed People,' that the reserve stock of rifles on hand in Great Britain last January was under 1,000. As fast as they are made they are shipped off, and in January last at the Cape in South Africa, for an army of

250,000 men they only had 230 rifles in reserve. That was a scandalous state of affairs. There was another case in which S00 volunteers were sent to the front to take their part against the enemy and rifles were put into their hands the day before they were sent to the front that not one man amongst them had ever handled before, so that it was simply impossible to expect the best results to be achieved by these men under these circumstances. Taking their own word for it, all that the factories in Mr. PRIOR.

Great Britain can turn out, if they are working over-time, are 20,000 rifles a month, whereas, in France, Austria, Germany and the United States, there are several factories that can turn out at least 65,000 rifles a month. We find that Great Britain is very much behind in the position of being able to supply a sufficient number of rifles for a large army.

Now, I feel certain that the government have only to ask for sufficient money to put us in a proper state of defence and readiness and they will find that the people of Canada are in the humour to give them all they ask. I never remember a time since I have been in this House, which has been for a great number of years, that there has been any murmuring against militia expenditure. Whenever the Minister of Militia has asked for certain sums for the militia I have never heard an hon. member get up in this House and say that he thought the amount required was extravagant. I believe that the members of the House are alive to the fact that Canada must take her part amongst the other colonies of Great Britain, and she can only do that by placing herself in a proper state of defence. Lt.-Col. Denison also showed that the sum of from $2 to $5 per head was the amount that was expended by the different civilized nations of the world for the defence of their countries, whereas, Canada, as 1 have already shown, expends only 40 cents per head. Surely the government would not take it amiss if I were to advise them that they should at least spend $1 per head, which would give $5,000,000, and which should be given to the hon. Minister of Militia to expend in the manner in which he thought best to produce desirable results, which would be only half of what other countries expend. In regard to this pension I would ask hon. gentlemen not to be afraid of the amount that it will come to. Before I sit down I intend to read what the English pension list comes to, but even that would amount to very little indeed if granted to the men who would call for it. If a Pension Bill were brought in now, I believe it would be some three or four years before a single man could claim the pension under this list that I shall read. I hope it is intended by the government that no man shall be allowed a pension whatever until he has served twenty years. Any man who leaves the service under that time will be young, and it should not be considered that he is entitled to any pension, at least, not in a country like this, but, when a man has served twenty years, I think he is entitled to a pension and a good one. I would draw the attention of the House to the fact that no man ought to get a pension unless the Minister of Militia is satisfied that his conduct has been good for the whole time during his service.

With regard to the number of men which Canada has sent to South Africa, we are liable to boast in this country that we have

done very well, but I can tell the House that If we sent the same number of men in proportion to our population that the British Isles sent, we would have sent thirty thousand men to South Africa instead of the three thousand that we did send. Great Britain sent 200,000 men, and in proportion to our population we would have sent

30,000. We could have got 30,000 meu in Canada, and we could get 30,000 to-morrow, if their services were needed in defence of the empire. I presume that the mind of the minister (Hon. Mr. Borden) is made up pretty well as to what measure he shall submit to parliament, but if he should think of asking for anything which might be considered too small, there may be time yet for him to do full justice in the pensions. I have here the scale of pensions in the British army, taken from the Royal Warrant, and with the permission of the House I will read this document, in order to give an idea of what pensions are paid in the British army. I may say that I have turned the pounds, shillings and pence into dollars and cents, so that we may understand them more readily :

N. C. O.'s and Men-Seale of Pensions. 1160. Permanent pensions shall be granted, under the conditions laid down in Articles 1151 to 1159, according to the following daily scale, less (subject to Article 1209) a deduction of 1 cent a day, for every complete year of service rendered before the age of 18 (' service ' reckoning), as laid down in Article 1145, and ' qualifying service,' as laid down in Articles 1146 and 1147 : Non-Commissioned Officers-With not more than 21 years total service, and with the following continuous qualifying service immediately preceding discharge, or the completion of 21 years total service :-______

Class. 12 years As Sergeant. 50 rt h - S Sf >>

s CjCZJ X 6 years As Sergeant. 3 years As Sergeant.cts. cts. cts. cts.1st 66 60 54 482nd 60 54 48 423rd 54 48 42 36

Privates-With not more than 21 years' service, and with the following qualifying service :-

Class. 21 years. 20 years. 19 years. 18 years. 14 to 18 years.5th cts. 26 cts. 24 cts. 22 cts. 20 cts. *16-20

*1 cent being added for each year of qualifying service more than fourteen years.

These would be ridiculously small pensions for men in this country, where wages are very much higher than they are in Great Britain, and when the minister takes this matter into consideration, I would ask him to at least double these pensions, which are paid to non-commissioned officers and men who have served in the British army.

Combatant Officers.

515. Scale of Retired Pay-Voluntary Retirement

(subject to Article 511).

Second Lieutenant, Lieutenant or Captain,

after 15 years' service $ 600

Major (having substantive rank as such), with three years' service in his substantive rank-

After 15 years' service $ 600

After 25 years' service 1,000

Lieutenant-Colonel or Colonel (having substantive rank, not below that of Lieutenant-Colonel, with three years' service in his substantive rank-

After 15 years' service

1,250After 27 years' service

1,500After 30 years' service

1,825After completing the term of employment as substantive Lieutenant-Colonel or Colonel, in our cavalry or infantry on retiring as a Colonel at the age of 55, if he held that rank on the 31st December, 1890, or was liable to retirement under Article 518-1


526. Retirement of Combatant Officers generally on account of Medical Unfitness, and Scale of Retired Pay.

Second Lieutenant, Lieutenant, Captain or Major (with substantive rank as such).

If not Caused by Military Service (after 12 and not exceeding 15 years' service). -Retired pay equal to half-pay for such period only, not exceeding five years from the date of retirement from our , army ; after five years on half-pay (under Article 306), as our Secretary of State shall determine, according to the

merits of the case Yearly

After 15 years' service $ 600 "

In the case of a Major, after 25

years' service 1,000 "

If Caused by Military Service.-$1,000 a year, less $50 a year for each complete year of service less than 20, the minimum retired pay being, however, a rate equal to the half-pay of his rank. (In the case of an officer, at least 40 years of age, who was promoted from the ranks after having served not less than 10 years therein, the minimum retired pay shall, it the officer is retired as above, be $750 a year.)

All ranks above that of Major.-Same rates as for voluntary retirement, except that the condition of three years' service in the rank shall be omitted.

524. Retirement on Account of Age.


Second Lieutenant, Lieutenant or captain

(45 years) $1,000

Major, having substantive rank as such

(48 years) 1,500

Lieutenant-Colonel, having substantive rank as such or regimental rank (55

years) 1,825

(Or any higher rate to which the officer -would be entitled under Article 515-Voluntary retirement.)

Colonel, *with substantive rank (57 years), if not employed in a colonel's appointment (see Article 40)-

Royal Artillery, Royal Engineers and

Army Service Corps 2,250

Cavalry and Infantry 2,100

If employed in a Colonel's appointment (see Article 40) after the 31st December,

1890, and retired at or after the age of 57. 2,500

Pensions for Widows, &c.-Officers.

642. Pensions may he granted to the widows, and compassionate allowances to the children, of commissioned officers of our army dying either on the active or retired list, after the 30th June, 1881, at the following yearly rates, subject to the rules and limitations laid down in Articles 627 to 641-II ; and at twice the rate of compassionate allowance to each child, in the event of the children being motherless and in great pecuniary distress, provided the total amount granted to the family does not exceed the limit laid down in Article 640 :-

A. Ordinary Pension.

Colonel, provided he has been employed in a Colonel's appointment if a combatant officer, or in the rank of Colonel if a medical or departmental officer, after the 31st December, 1890 ; or, if a regimental Colonel, not being a General


$500 $80Colonel, not employed as above after the 31st December, 1890 ; or Lieutenant-Colonel

450 80Major

350 70Captain

250 60Lieutenant or Second Lieutenant_____ 200 50

There are other pensions given to the intermediate ranks, which I will not take up time to refer to, and there are also certain gratuities granted, hut this list which I have read gives a very good idea of the pensions and allowances in the British service. The Minister of Militia no doubt has studied the British pensions perhaps more fully than I have, and with greater ability, and he must have come to the conclusion that there is nothing in these pensions which is at all exorbitant. Indeed, any one who gives the matter study must believe that these pensions are not too much for the men who have so well upheld the honour aud credit of Canada, and who are ready to do so in the future. If the minister (Hon. Mr. Borden) brings in a proper pension Bill he will make for himself a name in Canada that he will be proud of in days to come. Those who have studied the question will, I am satisfied, come to the conclusion that it is only a matter of justice to these men that they should have pensions. They are poorly paid ; they are men of intelligence ; they are men of probity ; they are the best class of men you can get in Canada, and surely it Mr. PRIOR.

is the duty of this country to see that they should be paid equally as well as men holding similar positions in any other branch of His Majesty's service.


Andrew Thorburn Thompson


Mr. ANDREW THORBURN THOMPSON (Haldimand and Monck).

Mr. Speaker, on some future occasion I propose to deal with matters of general interest to the militia of Canada at some length, but to-day I shall be very brief indeed in my remarks in reference to the subject which is now under the notice of the House. I have listened with a great deal of interest to the instructive remarks of the hon. member for Victoria, B.C. (Hon. Mr. Prior). I am sure that his speech embalmed in ' Hansard '-if I may use that expression-will be one to which we may refer on future occasions as to a mine of valuable information. To my mind, the question is : will a retiring allowance

for the permanent force be in the best interests of the people of Canada ? To that question I give the most emphatic affirmative. It is now beyond dispute that we must have in Canada a militia ; and if we must have a militia, it should be an efficient one. The permanent force is a part of the active militia of Canada ; but the reason of its existence is not that it may serve as a garrison, because it is in numbers altogether inadequate to do so, but that it may be a training force for the rest of our active militia. I think I am within the mark when I say that no body of public servants has exerted itself more to the public advantage of this country than the permanent force. The officers of that body since its creation, have devoted themselves with untiring energy to the promotion of the efficiency of the force which they have had to instruct. I remember when the permanent force was first organized ; and I have been in the militia long enough to have seen the immense improvement which their work has brought about in the militia of the country. Only ten or twelve years ago, when I first went into camp at Niagara, I remember that almost every corps had to borrow an instructor from the per-mament force ; but to-day, if you go to that camp and pass from corps to corps, you will find in each one the officers and non-commissioned officers doing the work which formerly they had to employ others to do. That in itself is no small advantage to the country. In what respect does the permanent force differ from the civil service of Canada ? There is a marked difference. Owing to the possibility of war at any time, these men must be sound both in body and in mind, and consequently there is an age limit set to their service ; and when an officer reaches that age, it matters not how able he may be to perform his task, he must retire. In the civil service no such rule exists. and there is not the same reason for it. The result is that many men still, comparatively speaking, in their prime are cast

out of the force and left to do for themselves at an age when they are not fitted for other permanent employment. In many cases men who have been officers high in rank have been compelled to become messengers or to accept other positions of menial employment in which they are paid only from $1 to $1.50 per day, to keep themselves from actual starvation. While they are in the service we pay them enough to keep body and soul loosely together under a gay uniform, but not sufficient to enable them to provide for themselves after they retire and when they have to depend on their own resources. In asking for a retiring allowance for the permanent force our first care is not that force; it is the whole active militia. If we are to have a good active militia, we must 'iave good instructors for it ; and if we are to have good instructors in this com mercial age, we must hold out financial inducements sufficient to get men equal to the task. While in times past we have had most excellent men giving their services as permanent instructors, in the time to come, ir we have many more such examples as those I have given, of men being thrown out in their old age to get along as best they can, it will be an utter impossibility to secure good men for the permanent force of the country. Therefore, in these few words I wish to put myself on record as most strongly supporting the proposal of a retiring allowance for the permanent force of Canada.


Hon. WM@

ROSS (Victoria, N.S.) I have listened with considerable attention and a great deal of approval to the speech that has been made by the hon. member for Victoria B.C. (Hon. Mr. Prior). I think we are as a rule apt to boast too highly of what Canada has done in support of the Empire in the war in South Africa, whereas when we contrast what we have done with what has been done and is being done now by the Australian and New Zealand colonies, we ought to feel humbled and not proud. We all rejoice, at least I do as much as any man m Canada, at what has been achieved by the small number of officers and men whom we have sent out there. They have shown what our military men can' do in comparison with those of any other country. But let us look at the present condition of things. On the 13t.h of March last, Canada had in South Africa, 117 men, New South V ales had 78S, Victoria G25, Queensland 530, South Australia 300. West Australia 310 Tasmania 300 and New Zealand 1 352 I have felt all along that it has been perhaps a misfortune that the troops which were sent out from Canada were called back so soon. I think greater efforts should have been made to have them remain in that country. I may say that I have followed the history of the Military College of Kingston with considerable pride. I occupv the 95 '

proud position of being able to state that on the 5th of May, 1874, I introduced the Bill for the establishment of that institution, and passed it through all its stages in this House. There was no ' Hansard ' in those days, and I was curious to see if I could recollect something of the speech which I attempted to make on that occasion. A report of it was given in the Globe-and I suppose it is not out of order to refer to a speech that was made twenty-seven years ago. I stated that the introduction of such a measure was new in the history of Canada; and I gave an outline of the history of thg West Point school in the neighbouring republic, and alluded to several eminent men who were trained in that great institution. In this connection I think that the government of Canada should have in view the object of finding profitable and useful employment for the men who are turned out of that institution, because the training they receive there fits them eminently for the public service. If they are thus employed, there is no doubt that they will reflect credit on themselves, the institution, and the country. At that time I suggested that the properly trained men who would be turned out of the military college would be the right men for the training of our own militia -that they would be better fitted to command and direct our own militia than men from the other side of the Atlantic.

There is a great deal of difference in the ideas entertained by military officers from Great Britain and those of Canadian officers taken from this side, and it will always be found that our men will do better under our own officers than those of the Imperial service. When I was in charge of the department, I found more trouble from the brigade officers in the public service who came from the other side, and who were imbued with ideas that could not be well controlled, than from any Canadians. I am glad to find that the hon. the Minister of Militia thinks favourably of granting pensions, and I am sure that such a policy will be favourably received by this House. I am not a mind-reader, but I feel pretty well convinced that the Minister of Militia, when the rate of pension was mentioned by my hon. friend from Victoria, B.C., was of the opinion that that was a subject which should be very properly left with the government, and that is my own idea. I only refer to this matter because I have taken a good deal of interest in the development of our military system in Canada, and have always been of the opinion that our work covered too much ground, and was consequently not as effectively done as it otherwise might be. This perhaps may not apply to small towns, but you will find that in the large towns, the colonels of regiments, in order to keep up the strength of their various corps, have to run around seeking raw recruits almost every year, as those who drilled one year are not to be found the following year, and must

be replaced by new men. That is not tbe way to have an effective system of defence. I did not intend to speak on this subject, but out of curiosity, 1 thought I would look back to my own record, and the journals of the House will show that on the 5th of May, 1874, the Bill to establish the Military College at Kingston was introduced by myself


Mr SAM. HUGHES (North Victoria).

I regret, Mr. Speaker, that a severe cold will render my remarks not very audible to the House, but perhaps some hon. members will not share my regret and will rather rejoice that I am not able to enter at any length into the very interesting question which has been so ably presented by my hon. friend from Victoria, B.C. (Mr. Prior). I was very much pleased to find in the person of the hon. gentleman who has just taken his seat (Mr Boss), a former Minister of Militia, and also that he is true to the principle which, as a Liberal, he advocated away back in 1874. In that respect, I think he occupies a position of splendid isolation among his colleagues. The hon. gentleman took credit for the establishment of the Royal Military College at Kingston, which we in Ontario had always supposed was the work of our good friend the Minister of Trade and Commerce (Hon. Sir Richard Cartwright). But to whomever the credit may be due, it is an institution of which Canada has a right to feel proud, and concerning which the remarks made by our hon. friend, who has just spoken, will meet with hearty appreciation on this side.

I agree with the hon. member for Haldi-mand (Mr. Thompson) that a permanent corps is undoubtedly necessary in this country, not as a fighting, but as an educative force. For the last ten or eleven sessions I have endeavoured to show, to the best of my poor ability, that in order to be successful in war, a country must depend on its volunteer force and militia, but none the less we must have a permanent corps, and one, I believe, even larger than the one we have to-day, as an educational institution ; and in order that this corps may be composed of the very best men available, I would urge on the attention of the Minister of Militia one or two requisites. The men must be well qualified and be better paid than they are now. What are the facts . Although comparisons are odious, I cannot refrain from making one which is very apt. A third-class clerk enters^ the civil ser\ ice without any special training, and compare the salary of such an official, who does not require any special training, but has only to pass a trivial examination, with that paid, not to a second lieutenant or a first lieutenant, but a captain in the permanent corps. And what are the conditions of the latter ? Every one knows that the conditions attending our permanent corps are very extravagant. A visitor calls at the barracks, and if not entertained, he goes off and says Mr. ROSS (Victoria).

that the permanent corps fellow is a chump and discredits him up and down the country. These men have to maintain an expensive uniform and do a large amount ot entertaining that really should be charged to the country and not to themselves. I would respectfully direct the attention of the minister to the fact that the pay of these oflicers is absurdly low-nothing like what is paid third-class clerks in these departments. I trust that in the new Bill, which the hon. gentleman promises us, he will not only provide for a pension but also for increased pay. I am very grateful to my hon. friend from Victoria (Mr. Prior) for the kindly reference he made to myself, but I must take exception to one of the statements he made, and one which was briefly touched on by my hon. friend from Haldi-mand That statement was that the officers of the permanent corps were rightly and should be chosen in preference to the officers of the ordinary active militia in times of active service.


Edward Gawler Prior

Conservative (1867-1942)

Hon. Mr. PRIOR.

I did not mean that.


James Joseph Hughes


Mr. HUGHES (North Victoria).

I am very glad to hear my hon. friend's disclaimer. The hon. member for Victoria, B.C., has pointed out the number of men under arms in South Africa in March last. Let me briefly submit a statement of the number from the various colonies who served in Africa throughout the war. Out of every ten thousand of population, New Zealand sent twenty-seven of her best sons to the front. Out of every ten thousand. Australia and Tasmania sent seventeen to the front. And out of every ten thousand Canada sent five to the front. New Zealand sent twenty-seven to Canada's five.

Reference has been made here to the magnificent service done by the Canadians in South Africa, and I can cordially endorse every statement about the gallantry of Canadian officers and men. But I also wish to be placed on record as stating that throughout the whole of the South African trouble, there were no troops, imperial or colonial, who could in any sense surpass those from New Zealand or Australia. Not that the men were any better, mark you, but the officers of the New Zealand and Australian forces were almost entirely taken from the ordinary active militia of the country, composed of farmers and business men, who were purely volunteers. These men had that individual development that-there is no use in attempting to deny it-a life in barracks, or a life passed in the permanent occupation of the soldier, does not develop to the same extent as do the ordinary avocations of life. I wish to be placed on record as believing that the great success that has attended the efforts of the New Zealanders and the Australians, as well as the other colonial forces, during the South African war, is largely due to the individuality of the officers, who have not been in all cases, or nearly all cases, men

of the permanent corps. Let me not he understood as urging this in the slightest as an argument against the idea that the officers of our permanent corps ought to be better paid than they are, and ought to have a pension assigned them after the completion of a certain number of years' service. These men I have always regarded as teachers, educationalists rather than as military men. Ten years ago I expressed this view-that these men were really military educationalists-and I have never seen reason to change my view. I trust that the minister will not only provide a system of pensions, but, by the training he gives these men, will bring to the front the best educative talent in the military life of this country, so that our military schools and colleges and the various departments of our military organization may be filled up with the best men the country can secure.


Charles Smith Hyman


Mr. CHARLES S. HYMAN (London).

I would hardly like the discussion of this matter to leave, either with the House or with the people, the idea that only those who are officers in the militia or who, like my hon. friend from Victoria, N.S., (Hon. Mr. Ross) have been Ministers of Militia, take an interest in the question. As a layman, I may say that I am extremely interested in the debate brought forward by the hon. member for Victoria, B.C., (Hon. Mr. Prior), and I desire to express my hearty concurrence in the idea that there should be a proper and satisfactory retiring allowance made for the officers and men of the permanent corps of Canada, upon such lines as the government may find it best to adopt. I feel perfectly safe in saying that the hon. minister, if he does introduce a Bill of that character, will receive the hearty support of this side of the House, and I am glad to know, from what has been stated by hon. gentlemen on the other side, that there is every reason to believe that he will receive the almost unanimous concurrence of the other side. If we desire to build up a proper system of militarism- if I may use that term-in Canada, it is necessary that we should enlist the very best of the young men of this country. It is necessary that they should be men of good character, it is necessary that they should be men of brains, it is necessary that they should be men of good physique. And, after we have used the best years of their lives in the service of the country, it does seem to me that it is not in accordance with what ought to be if we turn them out like old horses to die or live as they may. It is the law of the land that there is a retiring allowance for the civil servants ; and I hold that there is even greater reason for a law giving an allowance on the retirement of those who have served the country as members of the permanent military force, either as officers or as privates. I quite agree with a great deal of what has been said with regard to the 95J

expenditure which is necessary on the part not only of the officers, but of the noncommissioned officers and men of the permanent force while they are members of that force. I speak whereof I know when I say that it is almost impossible for them, when they are in the permanent force, to maintain themselves. I know, not one case only but several cases, of officers, men high in rank, who, after they had been retired owing to age, have had actually to accept, I might say almost menial service for the rest of their lives, and I do not think that is in accordance with the wishes of the people of Canada ; and I think it has only to be laid before the House and the people for them to appreciate the fact, and to stand behind the minister, if he sees fit to introduce this Bill. If there is one thing with which I might find fault with the military system of Great Britain it would be with the well-known fact, that only those possessed of private means can accept and hold commissions in regiments of the line, or in any branch of the service. In Canada we should not confine our enlistment of men to serve their country in the permanent force to those who have private incomes, and who are able, in a financial sense, to accept the small pay offered to the members of that force. I think it should be free to every young Canadian who desires to serve his country, and who is otherwise qualified to accept the position and, after he has got past the best years of his life, he should not be turned aside, but some provision should be made for him in his old age. I do not know what the provision of the Bill will be, nor do I desire to make any extended remarks ; but, when the Bill comes forward, 1 hope it will be received by both sides in no spirit of partyism, but will be dealt with simply from the point of view of the interest of the permanent force. And I do not know anything that will more forward that interest and the interest of the militia of Canada than the introduction of such a Bill and its enactment into law.



My hon. f riend from Victoria, B.C. (Mr. Prior) has anticipated the discussion which, I suppose, we shall have on the Pension Bill of which I have given notice, and which I hope to introduce to the House within a day or two. But, I am sure that my hon. friend has done this from the very best of motives, and I do not at all quarrel with him for having done so -in fact, I am very glad he has taken this course, because I think the discussion that has taken place to-day will have the effect of preparing the House, to a certain extent, and in a favourable sense, for the Bill when it comes forward. We have heard to-day from hon. gentlemen who hold commissions in the militia, one of whom was at one time, a good many years ago, when I first entered this House, Minister of Militia. And,

not less important, we have hail the testimony also of an hon. gentleman who is not a military man, but who supported this proposal quite as strongly as any of the military gentlemen have done. Now, I do not think it would be convenient, nor would it tend to the advancement of the business of the House, for me to anticipate the remarks which I intend to make /When I bring down the Bill. I shall, therefore, make only one or two observations. It is perfectly true, as has been stated by my hon. friends, that we have failed in the past in Canada to make adequate provision for the permanent force of this country. It has been pointed out that the duties to be performed by the permanent force are most important. The members of this force are the instructors, the educators, of the active militia. That I have always held to be their proper sphere. And it is our duty, even more so than it would be if they were simply for the purpose of doing garrison duty, to provide for these men in such a

way that the country shall be sure of always having men fitted for the Important duty which devolves upon them. That cannot be done under their present rate of pay without providing pensions for them. Something has been said with reference to the rate of pay. I shall not go into that here, but I am at one with my hon. friends who are of the opinion that it ought to be larger than it is. However, we will have done a great deal towards making up for this deficiency if we pass into law the Bill which I shall bring before the House, and which will provide, somewhat on the lines of the old Civil Service Superannuation Act, for a retiring allowance after a service of twenty years. My hon. friend from Victoria. B.C. (Mr. Prior) has referred to the desirability of granting pensions to non-commissioned officers and men. I may say to him, and to the House, that it has seemed to me for a long time that there was no reason why a distinction should be made between the North-west Mounted Police, who are granted pensions, and our permanent force, which is called upon to do duty somewhat similar. I shall therefore propose as a part of my Bill that the law which now applies to the pensioning of non-commissioned officers and men of the North-west Mounted Police shall equally apply to the non-commissioned officers and men of the permanent militia. We find it very difficult now to get suitable men to do the important work of the permanent force. I hope after my Bill becomes law that we shall have very much less trouble in that regard. It is not proposed, as my hon. friend seemed to imply, that we shall ask for any contribution towards the fund from the non-commissioned officers and men. It will be somewhat similar to the old Superannuation Act, except that no contribution


Frederick William Borden (Minister of Militia and Defence)


Mr. BORDEN (King's).

is required from the non-commissioned officers towards any fund ; they receive their pension without any deduction being made from their pay during the time they serve. That, I think, is proper. I will just state this one further point with reference to what the Bill contains. I do not feel that we can go so far as that in the case of the officers, and I propose to ask that an annual deduction, as in the case of the old Superannuation Act, pei'haps a little larger, shall be made from the pay to the officers. But I think it will be found that the return which is proposed will be very large, so large that, the officers will cheerfully make this subscription.

One further point. My hon. friend from Victoria, B.C., did not point out, although I presume he is aware of the fact, that at the present time, and for many years past,, we have been in the habit of giving, under an order in council, passed a long time ago, a gratuity to the officers and men of the staff and of the permanent force upon their reaching the age limit. We propose now practically to convert the gratuity to which they would be entitled, which is one-tenth of their pay at the time of retirement for each year of service, we propose now to discontinue that gratuity, but to give it in the form of a pension ; so that the officers of the permanent force will not only get what the annual amount they contribute to the fund would "ive them, but in addition they will get all they would have been entitled to under the present system, converted into an annuity ; that is to say that the government is practically purchasing an annuity with the gratuity which they at present receive. They will get the gratuity which they would have had, and in addition they will get the fu-U benefit of the amount of money which they will be asked annually to contribute out of their pay. My hon. friend from Victoria, B.C., referred to many other matters which I would like to touch upon, for instance, the Royal Military College, the interesting calculations made by Col. Geo. Denison, the cartridge factory, and the supply of rifles, &c. ; but it seems to me that these matters could be discussed, as they doubtless will be, much more conveniently when the militia estimates are brought before the House.


April 15, 1901