September 29, 1903

CON

Thomas Simpson Sproule

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. T. S. SPROULE (East Grey).

Mr. Speaker, the right hon. leader of the government (Rt. Hon. Sir Wilfrid Laurier), in his closing remarks, said that a new star has arisen but he did not say whether it was in the east or in the west. I presume that he meant that it indicates the approach of the wise men. If that which we have before us is an indication of their wisdom I may be excused if I would say that I have great doubts as to whether that star has arisen yet or not. That star indicated an overflowing treasury, an abundance of wealth and a desire on the part of hon. gentlemen opposite to spend it and spend it freely. I leave it to the people of Canada to judge whether or not it is another evidence of the wisdom of the government. The Prime Minister described the speech of the leader of the opposition, as being not so much an attack upon the policy of the government, as a defence of his own policy. Well, in so far as it was a defence of his own policy, it was an answer by the leader of the opposition to allegations made against it which were devoid of fact and logic. Gentlemen opposite indulged in all kinds of wild statements about the proposition laid down by the hon. leader of the opposition, and it was the duty of the hon. gentleman (Mr. Borden) to refute these statements. But, it is not the policy propounded by the leader of the opposition that is on trial before the people of Canada to-day. It is the policy propounded by the government that the people of Canada have to consider, and notwithstanding that, it may truly be said that the Prime Minister applied himself today. not to defending his policy, but in trying to detract from the acceptance which the policy of the leader of the opposition has found from the people of Canada. The policy proposed by the leader of the government commits the country to the expenditure of millions of dollars, to an increase in the public debt, and to heavy burdens which must be borne by the people for many years in the future. And, Sir, the country will judge the government by the policy which they have laid down, and not by the policy of the leader of the opposition. The right hon. gentleman taunted us, that we have never dared to crystallize our opinion, by moving an amendment. Why, Mr. Speaker, there is an amendment in your hands now, and there was an amendment moved not so long ago in this House, setting forth the opposition's views on this question, and how in the face of that, the Prime Minister could make such

a statement, is something that I cannot understand. One of our amendments has already been dealt with, and another very cogent one is before the House now, and it must be voted upon by the ministers and their supporters whether they like the ordeal or not. The right hon. gentleman told us, that the policy of the opposition was many-sided. Well, we are not ashamed to say that it has many-sided virtues, and we are quite confident that its many-sided virtues will receive the commendation of the people of Canada. The trouble with the policy of the government is, that it has only one side, and the only side it has is that it burdens the country with an enormous expenditure. Let us inquire into a few of the many-sided advantages which the proposition of the leader of the opposition will confer upon the people of the country. It develops the transportation routes now in existence ; it increases the transportation facilities which we have been spending money to perfect for years past ; it does not side-track the wealthy towns and cities of Ontario and Quebec as does the government scheme; it assists in building them up and bringing trade through them; it confers benefits on the people of Ontario, of Quebec and the maritime provinces; it builds up the great ports of the Georgian bay, and of Lake Huron and of Lake Superior; affords accommodation to the people of Manitoba and the North-west right through to the Pacific ocean. Yes, Mr. Speaker, the policy of the leader of the opposition's many-sided, and every side of it has a virtue in it, and every virtue it possesses will commend it to the intelligent judgment of the people of Canada. I regret that I cannot say the same for the policy of the government. We are told that no madder scheme could be conceived, than ' that the government should operate the Canada Atlantic Railway. We were asked, where would that line get its freight if it did not depend on the United States for it. But, is that an unmixed evil ? If we have the United States supplying that line with freight would that fact alone not aid it to give a better service for the transportation of home freight ? Wouid it not add to the earning powers of that line ? Would that be any objection to the scheme ? Why, Sir, I believe that is an additional recommendation in favour of the proposal that we should take over the Canada Atlantic Railway. And, if the Canada Atlantic Railway is handling the freight of the western states to-day, why should it not handle it if the road passed under the control of the government ? I submit these considerations to the right hon. gentleman in the hope that he may revise his opinion in this respect. Then the right hon. gentleman told us,'that the essence of the government scheme is another railway between the east and the west. Let me point out. to him that we are going to get another railway into the North-west in a very short time, without a

dollar of cost to the people of Canada. I see it stated tlmt the Canadian 1'acilic Railway is double tracking its line both east and west from Rat Portage, and they hope in the near future to have a double track from Port Arthur to Winnipeg. That affords practically another railway into the country, because when they reach Lake Superior, the great distributing centre of that western country, it is taken by the lake fleet of steamers and transported to the Georgian bay, where there are a dozen railways ready to carry the produce to the east, and distribute it to the markets of the world. That double track line will give to the people of the North-west, without the expenditure of a dollar, all the advantages that the most sanguine could hope from the government scheme, which is bound to cost us millions and millions of dollars. Let me ask the right hon. gentleman, if the scheme proposed by the leader of the opposition does not contemplate giving additional railway accommodation to the people of the western country ? In what light does the right hon. gentleman regard the purchase of that portion of the Canadian Pacific Railway from North Bay to Sudbury, or Port Arthur. If three railway companies used that one track which is only used by one company now, would there not be three railways going into that country, instead of one as at the present time, and we can secure all that for less than one-third of the cost entailed by the scheme of the government. The right hon. gentleman has asked if the plan proposed by the leader of the opposition is cheaper than the plan proposed by the government. Well, the data furnished by the leader of the opposition to-day ought to be satisfactory evidence on the point that his scheme would cost at the outside $60,000,000 to bring it to its full fruition, as compared with at least $120,000,000 which the road proposed by the government would cost. Hon. gentlemen on the other side of the House, have calculated that the government proposal will cost all the way from $13,000,000 to $120,000,000. Of course the $13,000,000 estimate is only the interest upon the expenditure involved in the undertaking, but if you apply any reasonable calculation, you will find that it will cost $120,000,000 of somebody's money to build that road. It will, therefore, be seen that the cost of the scheme proposed by the government will be at least double the cost of the scheme proposed by the leader of the opposition. and will afford no greater advantages. Indeed, in my opinion, the government scheme at double the price, will not be so advantageous for the people of the country as that proposed from this side of the House. I believe, Sir, that the more the people understand the scheme proposed by the leader of the opposition, the more it will meet with the approval of the people.

The line proposed by the hon. leader of the opposition, the right hon. gentleman says,

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CON

Thomas Simpson Sproule

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. SPROTJLE.

is through a barren, rocky, country, while the other is through a fertile country. It is well enough to say that it is a fertile country, if you judge the whole by a few miles here and there where a traveller, a trapper, a pleasure-seeker, a trader or a timber seeker has been. I do not think the right hon. gentleman has a sufficient data regarding the country through which this road is to run, to speak of its character with confidence. There must be at least 400 or 500 miles of that territory of which we know nothing. We have comparatively speaking no information about the country ; we are going it blind. It may be full of muskegs, rocks, and mountains of rock, like a portion of the country through which the Canadian Pacific Railway runs around Lake Superior. In the one case we have overcome the difficulties, we know what the railway is and what it has cost ; but we do not know what the other will cost. The right hon. gentleman says railways must always be the complement of the water stretches-that the two must work together. Well, surely, the two working side by side are more likely to work together than when one runs through the interior of the country. He says of the scheme of the leader of the opposition that for six months of the year part of it is frozen up. It is true, the water stretches are frozen up, but the railway will run all the year round. If the scheme of the leader of the opposition is carried out, there will be three railways carrying grain around Lake Superior where there is only one at the present time. If we had grain elevators on the ports of Lake Superior and the Georgian bay, the grain coming from Manitoba would be carried around Lake Superior by these three railways in the winter. Surely these railways would be the complement of the water stretches, and the people would have more benefit from them than they would from a single railway running through the interior of the country, where there are no elevators and will not be for years, for the storage of grain. The right hon. gentleman said that the policy of the opposition is a psychological study-a study of a struggle between conscience and duty on the one hand and policy on the other ; a study to decide whether they will follow the dictates of conscience or the dictates of expediency. Well, I regret that I cannot return the compliment to the right hon. gentleman, because there seems to be neither conscience nor expediency in his policy. It is a matter, as he said himself, of imminent haste, of going it blind, without any debate between right and wrong, between conscience and expediency, between wisdom and unwisdom ; but he has mapped it out, and he is going to force it through. There is no psychological study in that. The right hon. gentleman says that we have all the information in regard to the character of that country that we want; we have mountains of it. I have

here the mountains of information laid on the Table of the House, and what is it ? A small pamphlet containing 179 pages, with one map. That is the mountains of information given to the House to justify it in supporting this scheme. Let me read a few of the * sources of information ' of which this is the nearest epitome :

The iron belt on Lake Nepigon

That is supposed to give the information

we require to build the railway

-is the title of a report on some deposits of iron ore recently found on the east shore of Lake Nepigon.

Barlow, Dr. A. E.-Report on the geology and natural resources of the c.juntry Included by the Nipissing and Temiscaming map-sheets. Annual Report Geological Survey of Canada.

Beatty's lines.-Exploration line of 1870 was drawn from the north-east angle of Lake Nepigon in a south-easterly direction to a point near the southern end of Long Lake and then in an easterly direction to the ' 46-mile post ' just south of the height of land.

Bell, Dr. R.-Report of an exploration in 1865 between James bay and Lake Superior. Report of Progress, Geological Survey of Canada.

Exploration of Churchill and Nelson rivrrs.

Away up on the Hudson bay, hundreds of miles north of where this railway will run. This is the information which the right hon. First Minister regards as of a most valuable character.

Report on the geology and resources of the country lying on the north-western side of Lake Superior.

Then we have something about ' the Laurentide Axis ' ; something about ' the Quebec end ' ; ' obstacles few ' ; something about the flora of the .country, which would be most valuable for those who want to build a railway to know-what kind of flowers there are in the country, whether they are beautiful or otherwise ; whether they will furnish a beautiful bouquet for each engineer who goes through. This is the kind of information which the government has furnished. It is rather a burlesque. Then we have something about the Hudson bay basin, which this railway will not touch, though it is expected to cross the height of land nine times. Then, we have something about the Ontario reports, something about the timber limits, the reports published and the geological surveys. This is what the right hon. First Minister characterizes as the mountains of information to enable this House to determine whether or not it should go on with this undertaking.

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An hon. MEMBER.

Read some of it.

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CON

Thomas Simpson Sproule

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. SPROULE.

It may be worth while to read a little. Here is what it says with regard to the Laurentide Axis :

The Laurentide hills proper do not extend to Hudson bay. They form a belt of hills varying from 100 to 200 miles in breadth, skirting the St. Lawrence valley and forming a divide between the great alluvial and marine plain or basin of Hudson bay from that of the St. Lawrence. It is a comparatively narrow belt. North

of this fringe of Laurentide hills lies the comparatively level and gently sloping country of the Hudson bay basin.

That is all the information we have about that. Then we have the following about the Quebec end :

The woodland region as a whole throughout Quebec and Ontario, along the height of land, varies but little in its general level, some sections of it, more especially in the eastern portion, between the St. Maurice and the city of Quebec, is rocky, hilly and well timbered, while other sections for long stretches consist of rolling clay and sandy loam and well timbered lands.

The more mountainous and hilly section in Quebec is that from the city of Quebec to the headwaters of the St. Maurice river, hut here we have in the latter river a great wide valley which affords a natural and remarkably easy highway into the north and interior of the woodland region.

North-western Quebec-From the surveys made along the northern border of the counties of Champlain, St. Maurice, Maskinonge, Ber-thier, Jolieitte and Montcalm in the vicinity of the height of land, it has been ascertained that this region comprising the sources of the Ottawa, Gatineau and St. Maurice rivers, consists of many comparatively level sections constituting a generally level plateau. Many of the streams flowing into the Hudson hay basin have their source here also ; the higher woodland being more lto the east and south-east.

It is important for us to know that these rivers have their sources up there. That is very valuable information when we are considering the building of a railway through that country. Then we have Mr. Gillies' statement, which gives us a comparison between Hudson bay basin and Scotland. Of course it is important that we should know all about Scotland and be able to make a comparison :

Mr. Gillies, who for eighteen years was Hudson bay factor at Fort George, about 235 miles north of the foot of James hay, volunteered the following statement regarding the capabilities of that portion of the Hudson bay basin :-'I have no doubt that any crop that grows in Scotland can be successfully grown at Fort George.'

That is all Mr. Gillies has to tell us, and very valuable information it is, on which to build a railway. Then we have an opinion with regard to the obstacles, and we are told that the obstacles are few :

For a distance of 700 miles, from Lake Kapi-tachuan (Upper Gatineau division) ill' a westerly by north-westerly direction as far west as White Earth lake near the confines between Nepigon and Lake St. Joseph divisions (Div. IX. and X. respectively) the line runs through a generally flat sand and clay country, where hills appear sparingly scattered with occasional ridges protruding through the drift or soil-covered country.

That is another valuable item of information. Then we have some information about the Hudson bay basin, which, if this road ever reaches there, may be of some value r

Whereas the country drained by the streams flowing south into Lakes Superior and Huron constitute a narrow and rocky hydrographic basin, for the most part, flit for cultivation aud

agriculture only in limited areas, the central portion of the hydrographic basin of Hudson bay, north of the great lakes is covered with soil consisting of clay and sand, in which vegetable mould forms a large percentage, thus rendering the land most desirable for the cultivation of crops when ordinary drainage is effected.

It is valuable to know that the country is covered by soil consisting of clay and sand. What else would it be covered with V That is valuable information on which to judge whether it is advisable or not to go on with this undertaking.

The evidence afforded by the flora or native plants of the district along the proposed railway line affords an excellent criterion to agriculturists and others in making an estimate of the capabilities of the district in question.

Very valuable information this for the government. Then we have a description of the mineral possibilities :

The metalliferous belt of Huronian rocks which carries nickel, copper, silver, gold, iron and other minerals of economic importance occurs prominently throughout a large section of the line of the proposed railway. After crossing the Canadian Pacific Railway in the Sudbury region this great mineral belt proceeds in a northeasterly direction to Upper and Lower Lake Abitibi north of the height of land. This mineral belt is quite wide in the districts of A'lgoma and Nipissing, extending close to the boundary of the Thunder bay district. In the latter district two large areas of similar mineral bearing rocks occur which lie also close to the height of land.

But the Prime Ministetr told us that that section of country was largely a fertile clay belt. Well, that is not the kind of belt in which you are likely to find mineral deposits. They are generally found in a rocky section of very little value for agricultural purposes, so that this report contradicts the assertion of the First Minister, who was describing this section as a sort of paradise for agricultural settlers. Its soil, he said, was equal to the very best in Ontario. Then we have the farming operations described :

The various farms of the different lumber companies carrying on business along the headwaters of the various streams which flow into the St. Lawrence and Ottawa rivers, as well as the gardens and farms scattered throughout the hydrographic basin of Hudson bay, at the Hudson bay posts (such as at Abitibi, Brunswick House, Frederick House, Mamattawan, Matta-gami, &c.) form excellent criteria from which one can easily ascertain the possibilities of the whole region from an agricultural standpoint, leaving no doubt whatever that the basin can support a vast population.

There is nothing about minerals there :

From a careful study of the altitudes comprised in the Quebec to Winnipeg region and south as well as north, it can be readily seen and affirmed that the boldest expression of the Laurentide hills occurs along the southern border of their line outcrop.

Not much information in that. I do not know that that was not well known before, and in any case it is little value to parties

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CON
LIB
CON

Thomas Simpson Sproule

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. SPROULE.

This information is so valuable that I wanted to lay it before the country. We have been told over and over again by hon. gentlemen on the other side that this report is so full, so comprehensive, and deals so directly with the question that it is all that is required. I simply want to enable the electorate to judge whether it is so or not, and I cannot do that without placing on ' Hansard ' a fair share of what is in the book. It proceeds :

These results are embodied in a coloured map showing the topographical and geological features as known to date.

That is most valuable information.

The areas of Huronian rocks which are (hose which carry the nickel, gold, silver, copper, and other economic minerals are delineated on the map in question so far as the surveys allowed.

A large proportion of the area covered by the map is coloured Huronian.

And what other colour would they make it ?

Eastern Belt.

The more easterly of these belts-the Great Belt-will be traversed for more than one hundred miles in its trend from the north channel of Lake Huron towards Lakes Abitibi and Mistassini.

Second Belt.

The next belt to the west, begins in Minnesota and is traceable from the south-easterly [DOT]

shores of Lake Nepigon in a north-east by east direction to the area of flat-lying evenly-bedded limestones of the Albany river basin.

That is most valuable information, no doubt.

Third Belt.

The third belt is almost parallel to the last mentioned

Well, it will have to run either in that direction or in some other.

-and lies to the north and north-east of Lake Nepigon. ,

Western Belt.

The most westerly belt is that which crosses the Canadian Pacific Railway track at Wabi-, goon, having a breadth of nearly twenty-five miles

That is a most extensive tract of country. -and strikes to the north-east In line with the Gloucester House area of similar rocks near Martin's Falls on the Albany.

There we have the eastern, second, third and western belts dealt with and how much information is there in all that ? After that a few lines are given to Fleming's Canadian Pacific Railway surveys. Then, at the beginning of chapter 15 we have the following : Height of Land Crossings.

Divide.

The line making the height of land or 'divide' between the waters which flow into the St. Lawrence river basin and those flowing into the Hudson bay basin crosses the proposed line of the National Transcontinental Railway as projected at the following points :-

Nine crossings are estimated. We can iinagine what the gradients and curvatures will be. The crossings are enumerated as follows :

First crossing.-In division III or upper Gatineau division just south of Lake Matchi Manitou.

Second crossing.-Takes place a little southwest of Lake Kiemawisk in division IV or upper Ottawa division.

Third crossing.-About 45 miles west of the second crossing in division IV. (upper Ottawa river), about 20 miles east of the inter-provincial boundary line between Quebec and Ontario, a little north-east of Lake Mattawa Gosik. The height of land then trends in a south-westerly direction for some 2(10 miles and crosses the Canadian Pacific Railway track between Ramsay and Ridout stations a little east of Chap-leau station via way of Fort Mattagami.

The Canadian Pacific Railway track runs along and close to the height of land in the rough country north of Lake Superior as far west as Amyot station, and thence takes an almost due northerly direction along the 85th meridian and crosses the projected line of the Grand Trunk Pacific five times in a distance of 125 miles in the Long lake district.

Fourth crossing.-Takes place at a point about 20 miles from the western edge of division VII., Mamattawan division.

Fifth crossing.-Takes place just at the junction of divisions VII. and VIII., Mamattawan and Long lake divisions.

Sixth crossing along the projected railway line takes place in division VIII. (Long Lake

division), about 18 miles south-east, by east of the Hudson's Bay Company's post at the northern extremity of Long lake.

Seventh crossing is about five miles south of the Hudson's bay post just mentioned and occurs in the centre of the Vlllth or Long lake division.

Eighth crossing.-Occurs at the western extremity of the VIII or Long lake division, about 15 miles west of Big lake.

The projected railway line and the height of land then nearly coincide with each other throughout division IX. or Lake Nepigon division.

Ninth crossing.-Takes place on the 89th meridian at a point about twenty (20) miles east of the extreme westerly portion of the Nepigon division, and about twenty miles south of the White Water lake.

The height of land thence takes a sudden south and south-westerly trend towards Lake Superior, where it is crossed by the Canadian Pacific Railway track at Savanne station.

That is the information-the tine crosses the height of land nine times. Anid yet this is to be a railway without any troublesome grades or 'curves. Yet, it is to go zig-zagging across the height of land like a snake fence. And it is to traverse the sources of'these rivers where there must be swamps, muskegs, and rocks. And this is a sample of the mountains of information given to the House. Upon that, ho

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LIB

Archibald Campbell

Liberal

Mr. CAMPBELL.

What page is the hon. gentleman reading from ?

Mr. SPItOULE. From page 164 of the ' mountains of information.'

Reforestation.

It appears to me that in view of the thousands of square miles of territory belonging to the province, capable of growing the finest pine, but which has either been destroyed by fire or cut and removed by the lumbermen, it would be desirable to know something of the natural laws In accordance with which, unaided even by us, this wide domain will again be clothed with groveis of pine as good, if not better, than those that have been destroyed or removed.

That is valuable information, and will be of great help to us in building a railway. I wonder how many dollars it will save to the country to have this information placed before us. That great country is to be reforested, the forest having been destroyed either by fire or the ruthless lumbermen. The great need is to learn the natural laws of reforestation in order to decide whether the country shall spend $100,000,000 in building tli is railway.

For although the time for planting young trees may not as yet have arrived, it may well he that in view of the rapid exhaustion of their timber limits, that the time has really come when it may be only prudent to nurse and protect the young pine trees which the hand of nature has planted and which are springing up by thousands in many places. The lauds of this description, which are contiguous to

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CON

Thomas Simpson Sproule

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. SPROULE.

leading lines of railways and navigable rivers, are specially deserving of this care and attention on the part of the government, and would, ' I believe, handsomely repay all the expense that might he required to do so.

Opening up a settlement of the country.

In my judgment, notwithstanding the difficulty of getting in supplies and materials in order to the construction, the railway can be built for little more than one-half the money north of the height of land that would be necessary to make a line with equally good grades along the north shore of Lake Superior.

Notwithstanding the difficulty of getting in supplies, in this gentleman's judgment this railway can be built for one-half the money north of the height of land. It is most important to know that. Then, there is a good deal about bush fires. And, of course, this is valuable information in building a railway :

The bush fires which have passed over the greater portion of the territory on and beyond the height of land

Yet, we are told, that is a country of valuable tracts of timber.

The bush fires which have passed over the greater portion of the territory on and beyond the height of'land within the last twenty or thirty years cannot fail to attract the notice and attention of every traveller-indeed so recent have they often been that the hush or young forest has rarely had anything like the time necessary to attain full growth. Bush fires, looked at broadly, as one of the forces or phenomena of nature, rather than in the light of mere accidental occurrences are, when confined to a wild and uncultivated region, by no means the unmitigated evil they are generally supposed to he.

Then we have :

The quantity of aspen poplar in this territory is very great, and may in view of the employment of the pulp of this wood for the manufacture of paper become extremely valuable. The tamarack too though much less in quantity (unless we Include the diminutive ones found in the muskegs), will also be of some value whenever the country is opened up. Tamarack of the size suitable for telegraph poles is very common and more rarely such as would make railroad ties were met with. The largest tree of this kind rarely exceeded six feet in circumference.

He found some that would make railway ties but more that was fit for telegraph poles. One report says that the country is all burnt over and has been for fifteen years past and the other that there is valuable timber up there that would make telegraph poles and ties but that some of these are in muskegs. Then there is gypsum up there :

The gypsum beds situated below the junction of the Mattagami and Missanabi rivers have been already described in former reports. I found pieces of gypsum on the coast about half way between Moose Factory and Albany, and was informed by one of my Indians from that part of the country that it could be seen in place at the bottom of a bay not far off when the tide was out.

That is valuable information given by an Indian in that country. He does not tell us where this is but it is important that we should know it because we are going to build a railway there. Then we come to the question of rock exposure. There are few rocks :

Probably in no part of Canada is there a smaller proportion of rock exposed at the surface than in the low belt of country south of James bay, and very few parts with so little bare rock as the second plateau or belt. In the third plateau, or that which constitutes the height of land, the proportion of rock is greater,

These are extracts from the report of Mr. E. B. Borron. Then we are told about climate and game, and about track surveys checked. We are told a little about the physical features of the country :

The most noticeable feature of the west coast of James bay is its extreme flatness. Looked at from a distance there is no distinct shore line, but the water and land seem to merge into each other. A strip varying in width from one to three miles and partly covered with grass and low shrubs extends along the coast from the Kapiskau to the Moose river, except for a few miles north and south of Cockispenny point, where the shore is fairly high and dry and the trees come to the water's edge.

Then we have * clay, sands and shells.' It is well we should know about the kind of shells to be found in that country, about ' surveys and instructions.' We come then to ' fish,' ' the kind of timber,' ' soil,' ' mountain ranges,' ' crops,' * coal,' ' clay escarpments,' ' fish and minerals.' This report contains a selection of items of that .character from the reports of geologists and it great deal of it is the imperfect information derived from the Indians. A great deal of it is only guess work, and very little is definite and can be relied upon. Yet, these are the mountains of information which have been given us in regard to the country through which this railway must pass. I have given a good many items from this report, and I do so because I think it desirable that we should know the character of the information which is given to this House to enable it to judge whether it is wise to pass this Bill or not.

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LIB
CON

Thomas Simpson Sproule

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. SPROULE.

I will leave the hon. member for West York (Mr. Campbell) to get up and read the rest of the book if he likes. I have read from page to page so as to give what may be taken as fair samples of the information afforded us, to show how indefinite it is and to show that practically there is no definite information at all; that the data is not reliable, that most of it is collected from the Indians that it is guess work and that it has no relevancy to the information that we want to enable us to judge as to whether it is wise to build this railway or not. [DOT]

This all important measure that we are dealing with now should have, in my judgment, been referred to in the speech from the Throne. I want to draw attention to one of the features of this session that I have not referred to before. Constitutional government means that the government of the day, when they propound any great policy, refer to it in the speech from the Throne when parliament is called together, and draw the attention of the country to the fact that they propose to deal with the question. It does not matter whether the policy involves a heavy expenditure or is far-reaching in its importance, but in so far as it is interesting or important to the country or Mr. SPROULE.

is important in other respects, whether it relates to transportation, or to the economic pursuits of the people, or to any other lines of activity in which the country is engaged, our form of constitutional government demands that it should be referred to in the speech from the Throne. Yet, we are asked to commit the country to an expenditure of $100,000,000 or $150,000,000 in carrying out a policy which is not of sufficient importance to be referred to in the speech from the Throne. Is that constitutional government ? Coming from the Reformers, who always pride themselves upon living up to the principles of constitutional government, it seems to me that it is more objectionable still. I say that they have abandoned constitutional government in that respect. They have refrained from taking the people as well as the representative of the Crown into their confidence and they have failed to disclose in the speech from the Throne the important policy which we are now dealing with in this House at the tail end of the session. It was not sufficiently important to be referred to in the speech from the Throne, but they can bring it down at the tail end of the session and ask us to deal with it in the dying hours of the session. This policy looks as if it were designed for the destruction of the trade of Ontario as far as I can judge. Taking a comprehensive view of the government in power, it would appear to me that they have a sinister design against Ontario, because it is evident that they are striking at Ontario by taking an unfair census of the country, a census which allowed them to reduce the number of the representatives of the people, and thereby reduce the strength of the voice of Ontario in this House. They struck at Ontario again by the Redistribution Bill, by which they have endeavoured to lessen the power and influence of Ontario in this House. Ontario gave a majority against this government and they cannot forget that. They keep that in view, and their desire is to curtail her strength, to destroy her power, to leave her helpless, to manacle her, first by the census, second by the Redistribution Bill, and third by this great transcontinental railway. If successful this railway would mean the destruction of our fleet of merchant marine which now plies on the great lakes. We are told that if this railway is built up to the standard announced by the railway expert of the government (Mr. Charlton) it will be capable of handling all the produce of the west. If so, it will destroy our lake marine, and in proportion as it is successful it will starve out the existing carrying routes that are so valuable to the province of Ontario. If successful, it means the destruction of our inland shipping; it means the destruction of our ports on the Georgian bay: it means the weakening of the financial strength of Ontario. and it means the decreasing of the population of that province. Our towns,

our cities, and our farming districts will t>e side-tracked by this road. Toronto, London, Hamilton, Windsor, Guelph, Owen Sound, Meaford, Kincardine, Collingwood, Midland ; the commerce of all these towns and cities, will be decreased in volume, and the reduction of their business interests will ensue. But we are told, that we will have a railway to Toronto by way of North Bay. Yes, we may have a branch line into Toronto, but all the same it means that Toronto is sidetracked, and any town in Canada that it was proposed to treat in such a way would fight almost to the death against it. If this line is successful it is not only going to injure our Ontario towns and cities, and our ports on the Georgian bay, but it will destroy the ports of Kingston and of Peterborough and the harbour of Montreal as well. It was said by the Minister of Finance, that a railway would be built from the main line to Montreal. Perhaps so; but Montreal will cease to be on the highway of commerce; Montreal will be on a branch line, and Montreal must lose a large portion of her present great trade. So it is with the other cities and towns in Ontario and western Quebec; the trade will be carried by them rather than through them, to their detriment if not to their destruction.

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The MINISTER OF CUSTOMS.

If the new railway does all that, it is going to be a great success.

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CON

Thomas Simpson Sproule

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. SPROULE.

Remember that I said ' if ' it met all the expectations which hon. gentlemen opposite claim for it, and the expenditure of this enormous sum of money would not be justified unless that railway proves a success. In proportion, as it is a success, then it will side-track these cities and towns of Ontario, destroy our merchant marine on the lakes and destroy the trade now coming to our harbours. You must remember that the steamers plying on the lakes must have return cargoes, in order that they may be operated successfully. When the boats arrive at Owen Sound they tranship their grain to the elevators and they take the reaping machines, and the mowing machines, and the other manufactured products of the east, back to the markets of the west. At the present time these steamers have cargoes both ways, but if this line carries the grain from the west to the east, then our merchant marine can only have trade in one direction, and every one knows that such tra,de is mot profitable.

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The MINISTER OF CUSTOMS :

It will not dry up the lakes.

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CON

Thomas Simpson Sproule

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. SPROULE.

Well, that is a kind of a side issue, and it seems to me that it does not require any high degree of intelligence to make such an observation. As between the scheme proposed by the government and the scheme proposed by the leader of the opposition, there is the important dis-397

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EEVISEB


tinctiou, that the scheme proposed by the leader of the opposition, carries in its train none of the evils which characterize the project of the government. The scheme of the lion, the leader of the opposition, brings trade to our ports and builds up these ports; it assists Ontario ; it assists our merchant marine, and it assists to build up our cities and towns, whereas the other scheme sidetracks them. There is another difference still. The scheme of the opposition will not cost half tlie money that the government scheme will cost, although the results from the scheme of the leader of the opposition will, in my judgment, be far more advantageous to tiie people of Canada. Surely if we can get as much good from an expenditure of $60,000,000 as we can from an expenditure of $150,000,000, it would be the part of wisdom to select the scheme which is the least burdensome upon the people of Canada. Then again, as regards our scheme, we are dealing with things which we know about. There is no uncertainty about it; every foot of territory which would be traversed by railways, as proposed by the leader of the opposition, is well known, and we have the data with reference to it in our possession. On the other hand, uncertainty, the want of knowledge; the indefiniteness of the information surrounding the government scheme, all alike condemn it, and ought to cause us to pause before we embark upon such a hazardous venture. The Lake Superior ports are important to us ; they have their elevators. The Georgian bay ports are important to us ; they also have their elevators. If we build railways between Port Arthur and Winnipeg, we can bring down the produce of the great northwestern country and put it into the elevators ; and during the winter time it will be distributed to Ontario, to the extent to which it is needed there, and the rest will go eastward to the sea-board. But the project of the government does not contemplate the carrying of a bushel to the elevators on Lake Superior or the * Georgian bay, but contemplates carrying everything to the eastern ports. Therefore it does not put the people of Ontario on the same level, so far as profits are concerned, with the people of the other portions of the country, and to that extent it is unsuitable. As I said before, the Canadian Pacific Railway is now double-tracking its railway between Port Arthur and Winnipeg. When that is done, there will be practically three railways into that country, because I am told that a double-track railway can carry three times as much as a single-track railway. There will be no danger of blockades in that country when the Canadian Pacific Railway and the Canadian Northern Railway are doubletracked and fully equipped. We have many lines of railway built in the North-west already, and we require many more. At the same time we want the. east to go hand in hand with the west, because we need our


EDITION


railways to be competitors with the waterways of the country. When the water-ways are frozen up, the railways can distribute the grain from the elevators, so that the traffic will go on in the winter as well as in the summer. This scheme attacks the credit of our country ; it will be a fatal blow to our credit if hard times come again, as no doubt they will come in due time. The undertaking is too great for us. It will heap up the debt of our country to an enormous extent. It will minimize the power of the government to assist other important railway projects. The government tell us that the federal parliament must always in the future grant subsidies for the building of railways, not only in the newer provinces, but in the older provinces as well. If we are obliged to borrow so much money for the construction of this road, where is all the money to come from to assist other railway projects in the future, in Ontario, in Quebec, in the maritime provinces, and in Manitoba and the North-west Territories ? I am afraid that our debt will be piled up so high that the government will find themselves very much crippled when demands are made upon them for other railway subsidies in the future. For these reasons we are justified in asking the government to go slowly. For these reasons we are justified in supporting the amendment proposed by the lion, leader of the opposition in preference to the proposal of the government. For these reasons I support the resolution. It is right that we should delay in order to get more information. It is important that we should have surveys made. It is important that we should not commit the country to such a heavy expenditure. It is important that we should not destroy the influence and power of the province of Ontario, that portion of the country which must pay the greater bulk of this money. In every dollar of indebtedness incurred for this undertaking forty-five cents must be paid by the province of Ontario, according to her population. That province must pay $45,000 in every $100,000. She must pay $45,000,000 in every $100,000,000. I want the people of Ontario to know this, and to realize what it means to them in the future. I want them to know what they are committing themselves and their children to in supporting the government in this undertaking. I want the members of this House from Ontario who are supporting the government to be prepared to defend their conduct of to-day when they go back to the electors and when this subject is under discussion. The province of Ontario is sometimes spoken of as the milch cow of confederation. I want the people of Ontario to know that they are paying forty-five cents in every dollar of the cost of this undertaking, so that they will be able to estimate whether the government have done right or wrong Mr. SPROULE. in committing the country to the heavy expenditure which this Bill will involve if we consent to its third reading at the present time.


CON

John Graham Haggart

Conservative (1867-1942)

Hon. JOHN HAGGART (South Lanark).

Mr. Speaker, I have listened with a good deal of pleasure to the criticism of the right hon. leader of the government and to the remarks of the hon. leader of the opposition in moving his amendment to the third reading of the Bill. The leader of the government said that after all there was not much difference between the scheme of the government and that of the leader of the opposition iu the matter of expense, though he claimed that the government's scheme was the best on the whole. His first criticism of the remarks of the hon. leader of the opposition was in reference to his advocacy of the extension of the government railway from Montreal to the Georgian bay. He criticised that because it involved obtaining possession of either the line of the Grand Trunk Railway or tha!t of the Canadian Pacific Railway between Montreal and Coteau, or the building of a rival line. As our policy involves utilizing portions of the Canadian Pacific Railway around Luke Superior, we could in the same way obtain running rights over the Grand Trunk from Montreal to Coteau. Why should we not do that, without building or purchasing another road V Perhaps in that respect the suggestion of the right hon. gentleman has a certain advantage over the proposition of the hon. leader of the opposition. However, the important thing is to have a government road from Halifax to the shores of the Georgian bay, with means of communication with the western prairies. It means the acquisition of the Canada Atlantic Railway. That could be all done for $11,000,000 or $12,000,000, or at the utmost $15,000,000. As to that portion of the proposed government road from Moncton to Quebec, we hear very little of it at the present time. It seems to have dropped out of sight altogether. I wonder at our hon. friends in the maritime provinces allowing themselves, like the little boy, to be told by the government: Just close your eyes and open your mouth and we will drop a plum into it. Just say nothing and we will build that section from Quebec to Moncton. But I think that section has passed out of the probabilities that are likely to occur for a generation or two in this country. It is not at all likely that the next generation or two will see a road built from Moncton to Quebec.

The right hon. gentleman, criticised my hon. friend the leader of the opposition, because he proposed an alternative scheme to his proposition to build a road from Quebec to Winnipeg. The proposition of my hon. friend was to build colonization roads into that country, according as its requirements demanded, with moderate gradients and equipment. In criticising that scheme, the right hon. gentleman did not seem to

realize the difference between building a road such as be contemplates, and one to be built gradually as settlement required, into that region which is described as so valuable by our friends opposite, in the northern part of Quebec and Ontario, and which would accomplish all the purposes for which it is needed and would cost far less. The scheme of the right hon. gentleman simply means an expenditure four or five times that necessary to carry out the proposition of the leader of the opposition. What are the probabilities ? I have shown that It will be impossible to build any road from Winnipeg to Quebec with modern gradients at a cost that is within the means of this country. The right hon. gentleman asks why, instead of acquiring from the Canadian Pacific Railway that portion of its line between North Bay and Port Arthur, not build another line which will open up a beautiful agricultural section of the country. X wonder where the right hon. gentleman gets his information. From Winnipeg east, as far as the prairie extends the country is flat, but once you strike the Laureu-tian ranges and go eastward towards Lake Nepigon, it is a costly country through which to build a railway, not nearly as favourable as the country from Port Arthur to Winnipeg by the north of the Lake of the Woods. From Wabigoon to the prairie country east of Winnipeg is full of granite ridges and morasses. Hon. gentlemen will find it described in the report of Sir Sand-ford Fleming, made in 1877, and to which reference is made in pages 103, 104 and 105 of the government blue-book, and: that reference is the only valuable information given in this book on the National Transcontinental Railway. This report of Sir Sand-ford Fleming deals with the surveys and preliminary operations on the Canadian Pacific Railway from 1871 up to 1877, made by order of the Canadian government. They cover that section of the country from the north side of Lake Nepigon westward to Sturgeon lake. On page 206 of Sir Sandford Fleming's work will be.found a report on the exploratory survey made from the River Pic to the River Nepigon, along the northern coast of Lake Superior and on other surveys made in the year 1874 by Thomas Jefferson Thompson. Let me remind the House that in 1873 and 1874 there was a survey made westward towards Winnipeg. There was a survey made by Sir Sandford Fleming from Winnipeg down to Lake Superior. In his report here he says : ' We have found an excellent route along the whole line of the road from Winnipeg down to Lake Superior.' Speaking of the gradients running eastward he says that in no case do they exceed 26 feet to the mile. That is a fact. We have a road now between Winnipeg and the head of Lake Superior with gradients, none of which are in excess of 26 feet to the mile, and the Canadian Pacific Railway are at present, as was stated by 397J

my hon. friend from East Grey (Mr. Sproule), doubling their tracks and reducing the gradients on that road to four-tenths per cent, or in other words to 20 feet per mile. There can be no better line of road got. It is at least equal to the Northern Railway which runs from Winnipeg to the head of Lake Superior, and you can get no road from Winnipeg to Lake Superior with gradients better than that. But at what expense to the people was that got ? For about 37 miles on that road, on section 15, built by Mr. Whitehead, some of it cost $250,000 per mile on account of the filling. On Cross Lake 1,000,000 yards of earth were put in at a cost of 28 cents per cubic yard. At Lake Deception there were over 500,000 yards and at another lake, Darlingford Bay, over 500,000 yards put In at 28 cents per yard. They managed to get a good road that way, but at an enormous cost ; and according to the reports of the engineers who surveyed that section, Sir Sandford Fleming and the engineers under him, they got a most favourable line of road from Winnipeg down to Lake Superior. But it was only at an enormous cost. On sectioif B there was an enormous expenditure. Let me tell the right hon. gentleman that Sir Sandford Fleming advised that the most feasible line of road for the purpose of connecting the eastern section of the province was from Port Arthur up to Lake Nepigon and thence down by the route at present taken by the Canadian Pacific Railway. Let me quote from the report, to be accurate, what work had to be done on 117 miles of that road :

The following are the approximate quantities in cubic yards of banks and cuttings for the distance of 117 miles from Peninsula harbour to Red Rock, also lineal yards of tunnels :-

Embankments, cubic yards, 3,413,860, per mile equal to 29,434.

Cuttings, cubic yards, 2,779,350 per mile equal to 23,755.

Lineal yards of tunnel, 13,350, equal to 71 miles.

And then there are the bridges. And after obtaining all this, the surveyor who was upon that section of the road says that in order to obtain a road such as he has shown you with the amount of excavation, the amount of earth to be removed, the amount of tunnelling that ought to be done in that section of the country, the only difficulty in railway construction along this valley would be in obtaining practical gradients. He says : ' my opinion is that

seventy or eighty feet to the mile could be obtained. Now, grades of seventy or eighty feet to the mile are simply of no use for a modern railway competing for traffic with a rail and water route. The hon. gentleman says that we shall have two main lines of railway which will be occupied in the winter, when the lakes are frozen, carrying the produce of the west to the Atlantic seaboard. Does the right hon. gentleman not know that to move freight in that country in winter costs about 40 per cent more than

in the summer ? If he will ask the men who operate the Canadian Northern or the Canadian Pacific Railway, or the parties who run railways in Minnesota he will learn that their instructions to their subordinates are not to take out a train more than is absolutely necessary ; to run the passenger trains even though they must be run at a loss, but not to carry a pound of freight if it can be avoided, because every pound of freight carried when the temperature is 25 or 30 degrees below zero is carried-no matter what you get for it-at a loss to the road. So you cannot expect any freight to be carried in winter. The only time when it would be possible to compete with the rail and water route would be in summer. The plan of my leader, is the only practical plan. It is the plan that is seconded by every intelligent man, every intelligent man connected with transportation between this section and the North-west. The main point of that plan is to get your freight from the west by the cheapest way to the ports at the bead of Lake Superior. There are already two roads running from the prairie country to the head of the lakes. They carry 30,000,000 or 40,000,000 bushels a year. Double track either of them and they can carry from Winnipeg to the head of Lake Superior 250,000,000 bushels a year. If you have means of carrying the freight to the head of the lakes there need be no difficulty in transporting it eastward. The plan of the leader of the opposition is upheld by Mr. Robert Meighen, who has been connected nearly all his life with the transportation business, and with buying grain in the west and bringing grain to the east. Having arranged to get your freight carried to the head of Lake Superior, encourage lines of steamers to bring it down to Georgian bay. Have elevators at the Georgian bay ports. Get two-thirds of the crop down during the summer, if you can, to the eastern shore of Georgian bay. Then, during the winter, you can take that by rail to Montreal, or, if possible, to St. John or Halifax. That is the only practical scheme. No one in his senses would think of carrying grain, whatever may be said by the right lion, gentleman, through by rail from Winnipeg to Quebec and from Quebec to St. John and Halifax. The road proposed by the right lion, gentleman between Quebec and Winnipeg may be useful for colonization purposes. If it is to be used as a colonization road, it may have grades of sixty or seventy feet to the mile, and, with those grades it can be built for one quarter of the money that it would be necessary to expend in order to secure grades of twenty feet to the mile.

At six o'clock, House took recess.

After Eecess.

House resumed at eight o'clock:

Topic:   EDITION
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September 29, 1903