April 7, 1908


President Board of Trade. The Hon. Mr. Motherwell wrote to me as follows : Executive Council, Saskatchewan, Kegina, February 28, 1907. Dr. E. L. Cash, M.P.. House of Commons, Ottawa. Sir,-The inclosed crop statistics and summaries of condition and amount of last season's crop yet in the farmers' hands will doubtless be of interest to you in pressing for better equipment of our present lines and the immediate construction of the Hudson Bay Railway, which questions are now before the federal House. Yours faithfully, W. R. MOTHERWELL, [DOT] Commissioner of Agriculture. Crop, 19(M). Shipped. In Elevators. In Farmers' Hands.28,089,475 9,874,295 6,362,190 8,135,000 To show that there is still complaint I will read the following letter received by me last month : Peaker Brothers, grain merchants, Yorkton, Saskatchewan, March 19, 1908. My Dear Cash,-We are getting stuck for want of cars at Rokeby. Do you think you could help us bv a timely word to the Canadian Pacific Railwav or its representatives at Ottawa ? Yours very truly,


PEAKER BROTHERS.


This correspondence plainly shows that last year the railways at that time were certainly not supplying the needs of the country, and that there are complaints even at present. This will be evident from the following railway statistics: Number of freight cars in Canada- 1897 57,754 1907 105,540 Increase, 82 per cent. Mileage of railway- 1897 16,550 1907 22,452 Increase, 35 per cent. Tons of freight carried- 1897 25,300,331 1907 63,866,135 Increase, 152 per cent. Traffic per car- Tons. 1897 439 1907 605 Increase, 37 per cent.


LIB

Edward L. Cash

Liberal

Mr. CASH.

expeditions dispatched to investigate the possibilities of Hudson bay were possibly coloured by political consideration or the decision influenced by the vested railroad interest affected by the proposal. We, however, know that the Hudson Bay Company's boats have traversed these seas for a couple of hundred years, and I have also read in the ' Gentlemen's Magazine.' an English publication, vol. 52, page 547, of date October 29, 1782, a quotation from the Paris ' Gazette ' of an expedition to Hudson bay by a small French squadron under the command of Admiral De La Perouse. This squadron consisted of the ' Sceptre,' 74 guns, and two frigates ' L'Astree ' and * L'Enga-gente' under the command of Chevalier Langle and the Sieur Joillie, having on board a detachment of 250 land forces with two 8-in. mortars, 300 shells, and four field pieces, that they sailed from Cape Francois on May 31, 1782. and on July 17, 1782, they arrived at the mouth of the strait, that they had neither charts nor pilots, but that they entered the bay, captured Fort Prince of Wales and Fort York, which is at the mouth of Nelson's river and after looting the several forts they sailed away having captured valuables to the amount of twelve millions of livres, which would represent about five hundred thousand pounds sterling.

The fact that a vessel of this class, a sailing vessel of course, of 74 guns could go into the bay in 1782 at that time of the year, accomplish what it did, and get out safely, would convince any ordinary man that both the straits and the bays are navigable for vessels of a larger draught. It convinces me that ordinary steamboats with proper appliances could navigate those waters much earlier than the dates mentioned.

It is twenty-two years since the route was first officially examined, and the long delay in coming to a favourable conclusion affords another proof of the false perspective in which suggestions of transportation alterations are seen .

Last year several hon. gentlemen on both sides spoke favourably of this matter.

Quoting from 'Hansard.' page 901, on March 30, 1906,1 find the hon. member from Souris (Mr. Schaffner) used these words:

I do not see how any one can look at that inland sea and not come to the opinion that Providence had a very wise thing in his mind when he put Hudson bay there. It was to oarry out the products, not only of Manitoba and the Northwest Territories, but also of the Northern United States.

The hon. member for East Assiniboia, as reported in ' Hansard,' page 908, March 30, 1906, expressed the hope that a railroad to Hudson bay would shortly be built and that such road would receive substantial aid from the Dominion government. The hon. member for East Assiniboia agreed with the hon. gentleman from Souris that such a railroad was a necessity, and would be a valuable Mr. CASH.

additional route for the whole of the western country.

Hon. Walter Scott in his address to the electors of Saskatchewan, in his last campaign said :

We have been obeying the direction of the Saskatchewan Liberal convention to urge the Hudson bay road project on the federal authorities, and not without success. I have now received assurance that the Dominion Government admit this project to be a national undertaking, and that they will not deny their responsibility. In other words, the Dominion Government will take measures to procure the construction of a railway from a point in Saskatchewan to the Hudson bay.

The policy of recognizing the Hudson bay route has actually received the endorsement of this government, and the people of the west have been officially informed of this fact by the gentleman who occupies the position of Premier of Saskatchewan.

Referring to this announcement as made by Hon. Mr. Scott, the hon. member for Qu'Appelle (Mr. Lake) reported in ' Hansard,' page 909, March 30, 1906, said in the House that he hailed this statement by Mr. Scott with infinite deljght and that he regarded the pledge made by the .Dominion government to undertake the work as one which wouid satisfy all the people of the [DOT]west.

Dealing with the subject from a practical standpoint, one only has to quote from a speech delivered in the Senate, on March 16 last, by Hon. Mr. Perley, a practical farmer in the Northwest.

After alluding to the difficulty and loss occasioned to the wheat grower by reason of the long and expensive haul from the wheat fields to the sea, the honourable senator said : ' Freight from Wolseley, Saskatchewan to Fort William is 10 cents a bushel, from Wolseley to North Bay it is 22 cents ' ; concluding his remarks the hon. gentleman said ' export from the Atlantic sea-board by rail is entirely out of the question.'

The freight rate upon grain from the belt to Hudson bay would approximate 10 cents a bushel : this is a freight the farmer could afford to pay, but the additional 15 cents necessary to get the grain to the Atlantic sea-board is prohibitive and of itself represents a fair profit to the wheat grower.

The saving in freight to the western farmer by reason of an outlet at Hudson bay, is represented by appalling figures. Assuming an export of 20,000,000 bushels of wheat to European markets via Hudson bay, the saving at 15 cents, being about the difference in cost of freight from Winnipeg to the sea-board which would thus be obviated, amounts to no less than $3,000,000.

When one pursues these figures and calculates the legitimate measure in foreign demand for Canadian wheat, the amount saved to the western farmer who has the

/

facilities of shipping via Hudson bay reaches a colossal sum.

I contend that the people of the west, having been invited by the government of Canada to settle in and cultivate that important territory, are entitled to facilities whereby easy access to a shipping port may be secured, without being compelled to surrender a large proportion of the results of their industry in payment of freight charges for unnecessary long hauls.

Are the advantages gained through the efforts of the Immigration Department, with their accompanying vast expenditures of money to be made, nugatory by failure to appreciate a proposition that is self-evident? When one reflects upon Canada's great western heritage, with its vast natural resources, its inexhaustible vitality, its great areas, its millions of acres of grazing lands, the industrial and commercial genius of its enterprising and aggressive people, the conclusion reached cannot be that all these should go for nought, or be in any manner compelled to fall short of their greatest realization by the mere incident of neglect with respect to providing intelligent transportation.

It is a principle of political economy that legitimate demands of commerce for an outlet at the point of least resistance, cannot be long delayed, and never ultimately frustrated. If the products of the west can be brought 1,000 miles nearer a European market via Hudson bay, then that point becomes, as a matter of course, the natural outlet.

The question may be asked, are not the people of the west entitled to their natural transportation advantages? I believe they are, and I regard it as the paramount duty of the government to recognize this principle.

An outlet at Hudson bay for the products of the west will annihilate a quarter of the distance from western Canada to Europe, bring uncounted millions of acres in the wheat belt a thousand miles nearer to market, and cut in half the annual transportation cost of 50,000,000 bushels of grain.

A very important feature in connection with a railway which secures quick access to the sea is with relation to the shipping of cattle to all the European markets ; this great industry is at present seriously handicapped in consequence of the long journey to be endured under present conditions. It is admitted as a well recognized fact, that cattle shipped to the Atlantic coast arrive at the shipping port in poor condition, bruised and emaciated by long days of rail travel. It is also admitted that on the sea journey they gain rather than lose flesh, if put on board in good condition. Experience proves that after three days of rail travel cattle will deteriorate ; that three days is about the limit of the time during which they can travel and maintain the condition in which they are placed on board. This

being so, cattle could be transported to Fort Churchill without loss of flesh, and the voyage to Liverpool would improve this condition rather than the contrary. Therefore, this great industry alone would find in the Fort Churchill route a solution of the difficulty under which those engaged in the business of cattle shipping now labour.

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?

Mr. F. W.@

Peters, assistant freight traffic manager of the Canadian Pacific at Winnipeg, states that up to the end of October over 72,000 head of cattle had been shipped to Liverpool from western Canada, and he expected a further 10,000 head to be shipped that season. The freight rate on these cattle would be about 60 cents a hundred pounds in (far lots from Winnipeg to Montreal. The rate from Calgary to Fort Churchill would be about the same as to Winnipeg, and the distance about equal, so that this 60 cents a hundred pounds could be saved to the shippers if he could put the cattle on board at Hudson bay, and he would also prevent the shrinkage which otherwise occur, .by reason of the additional rail journey from Winnipeg to Montreal.

Upon the 82,000 head of cattle shipped to Montreal from the west during the past season, the saving in freight alone, !f6 a head, or in round figures, $650,000, would be equal to about 20 per cent of the selling price.

Now, let us for a moment consider what amount of railway service will be required to handle 50,000,000 bushels of wheat and

82,000 head of cattle, which certainly is rather under than above the present output of that country, and we are not taking into consideration the handling of coarser grains, and, in my section of the country, as I have already stated, our oat crop is more than double that of the wheat. In order to move fifty million bushels of grain it would require 50,000 cars, loaded with 1,000 bushels to the car ; and with fifteen cars to the train, it would require 3,333 trains. For eighty-two thousand head of cattle, 5,125 cars, and, figuring on fifteen cars to the train, we would have 341 train loads. And if we stop to consider that the total area surveyed in the three provinces is about one hundred and twenty million acres, that it was stated before a committee of the Senate last year that there were one hundred million acres of land suitable for settlement north of the surveyed area, and that out of this gross amount there has been selected by railway companies' and by homesteaders about thirty-six million acres, which we can state with a great degree of certainty is all arable land, and that out of this there are about eight million six hundred thousand acres under cultivation, we can see that with a continued increase in the development of the country, which I think will be more rapid in the future than it has been in the past, it will be utterly impossible for any three railways to handle

the grain and the products of that country. Therefore, I think that this parliament and this government are in duty bound to give the question their immediate and most earnest attention. [DOT]

A revolution in traffic routes through Canada is bound to come, and the objective point for the west, is without doubt, Hudson bay. The citizens of Canada have not realized the transportation advantages of their country in the extraordinary rapidity with which they are being developed ; but the people of the west, those more nearly affected and most directly interested and having a knowledge of the conditions are clamouring for the immediate building of the Hudson bay route, because it will eliminate a long rail haul and save rehandling of freight.

Instead of this prejudicing existing transcontinental routes, I think they will be vastly benefited by the opening of the Hudson Bay route and by the improvement of the river and lake waterways of Canada. The possibility of direct communication with Europe through, the very centre of the American continent and at a saving of a thousand miles over the route through the great lakes, affords the greatest opportunity of all times to bring Western Canada a thousand miles nearer Europe and to place the farmers who cultivate millions of acres of land in control of the grain markets of the world, by making possible a fifty per cent reduction in the cost of transportation.

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CON

William James Roche

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. W. J. ROCHE (Marquette).

Mr. Speaker, considering the great fund of information which those who have addressed tht House have afforded hon. members on this important question, it is not with any idea that I can add anything of a very original character to the debate that I rise to address the House. I wish to take exception to the hon. member for West Assiniboia (Mr. Knowles) reflecting, as he did in his opening remarks, on the hon. member for Jacques Cartier (Mr. Monk) for wishing to introduce on going* into Supply his resolution referring to the immigration question, or' which he gave notice some days ago. The hon. member for West Assiniboia claimed that this question paled into insignificance in comparison with the question of a railway line to Hudson bay which, he said, was a question of extreme urgency. I could not help thinking that, if the hon. gentleman (Mr. Knowles) was sincere in making that statement, he did not by his actions show that he was any too urgent in bringing this question before the House. When I turn to the notice of his resolution on the order paper I find that it was given on December 8, 1907-just four months ago. The hon. gentleman waited until the last private member's day, then had the resolution dropped, and, to-day. he arises and introduces what I thought was going to be a Mr; CASH.

merely academic discussion. So far as the hon. gentleman was concerned, it certainly looked as if it would be no more than that, for he sat down without even moving his resolution. It seems to have been an after thought on the part of his colleagues to have another hon. gentleman from the Northwest move the-resolution of which the hon. member for West Assiniboia gave notice four months ago.

We must admit that this is a question of very great importance, more especially to the people of western Canada, but of importance as well to the people of Canada generally. For some years this question of a line to Hudson bay has been engaging the attention of the people of the west especially. The provincial government of Manitoba had taken steps many years ago, by way of statute in the form of money grants and guarantee of bonds, to ensure the completion of that road. Boards of trade, Farmers' Institutes, Grain Growers' Associations, have all passed resolutions in favour of the enterprise. And, in spite of many difficulties and many disappointments, the people's hopes have been many times buoyed up by indications that the road would soon be an accomplished fact. Rumours have been rife on more than one occasion that capitalists from Europe were ready to invest money in the enterprise, that steamship companies were about to place a line of properly constructed vessels on the route to carry our products across the Atlantic by the best and shortest route to the markets of the world. Those hopes have been, on every occasion, disappointed. But, in spite of disappointments, the people cling tenaciously to the belief in the enterprise, its practicability and its necessity. If the propaganda in favour of this enterprise has not been carried on during the past decade with the extreme vigour which characterized it some time before, it is not because the people believe that it is not necessary, nor is it that they are not in favour of it. The change is simply due to the fact that, during that time, our transportation facilities have very largely extended in other directions, and have, to a certain extent, relieved the grievances of the people during the past ten years. For instance, in days gone by, the Canadian Pacific Railway had practically a monopoly of the carrying trade in that country. That company was not better probably, and no worse certainly, than any other corporation similarly situated in a new country. However, the people felt that they were paying such high freight rates that they set up an agitation for what they believed would be the shortest route to market and one that would save a great deal in freight rates and make fanning operations more profitable. However, in the meantime the Canadian Pacific Railway has largely ex-

tended its system. Let any lion, member take up the map of Manitoba and he will see that It is a network of railways. Farmers in' that country have to carry their grain a comparatively short distance to the nearest market. Railway development has been so wonderful during these years by reason of provincial assistance, and Dominion assistance as well that now every farmer has a railway within a few miles of his door. The Canadian Northern Railway has an almost equal mileage in the province of Manitoba to the Canadian Pacific Railway. There are over 3,000 miles of railway in Manitoba alone and both these systems have been developing in the new provinces of the west, the Hill system to the south has tapped the prairie provinces of Manitoba, Alberta and Saskatchewan, and extends as far north as the main line of the Canadian Pacific Railway. The Grand Trunk Pacific has been before the people of this country for some years, and. while not in operation yet, combined with other roads has allayed to a certain extent the agitation in favour of the immediate construction of the Hudson bay road. But it is felt that, notwithstanding this great and wonderful development in our transportation facilities, the local traffic as created by these roads will supply more than sufficient for the carrying power of the roads and that, by the time this Hudson Bay Railway can be constructed, there will be sufficient and more than sufficient to afford traffic for that line also.

In the past political parties have vied with each other in the west in trying to impress on the people that each was more favourable and more earnest in its effort to secure the [DOT] construction of this road than the other. This shows that if it were allowed to become a party question it would be a very keenly contested one. It is true also that in years gone by, especially in eastern Canada, whenever this project was brought up it met with serious opposition, I will not say from disinterested sources or from unselfish motives : the opposition came largely from interested transportation companies and they invariably started to ' knock ' the enterprise. Newspapers were engaged in order to decry especially the feasibility of the route. Then too, business men in the east, who looked on the west almost as their own preserve, and who, to use their own expression, after having employed their money in developing the west felt that any advantages that would accrue from carrying the products of the west to the markets of the world should be realized by the people of the east, also opposed to it. I am glad to say. however, that a great deal of this former opposition to the enterprise has been done away with and this skepticism and doubt as to the feasibility of the route has been dispelled. Now a more enlightened public opinion appreciates the enormous po-202

tentialities of the west, and the fact that by reason of the large immigration and the larger acreage being brought under cultivation all these transportation lines will have more than enough traffic to tax their resources in the very near future. I am aware that while' the people of the west are anxious to have the line constructed, there may be and undoubtedly is a difference of opinion as to the best method of construction. It has not been made a party measure and one political party in the west may differ as to the method of construction. For Instance, the Liberals assembled in convention in Alberta showed their preference for a road that should be undertaken by the four western provincial governments, Manitoba, Saskatchewan, Alberta and British Columbia these governments joining together and making it a purely western enterprise. In convention assembled In the province of Alberta, they pased this resolution :

Resolved, that, inasmuch as the provinces westward of the Great Lakes are peculiarly interested in the establishment of a new route to the sea-hoard alternative to that afforded by railways to the Atlantic coast, and inasmuch as the creation of two new provinces out of the Northwest Territories gives the first opportunity for co-operation with this end in view; therefore this convention is of the opinion that the earliest possible steps should be taken to secure joint action by the governments of Manitoba, Saskatchewan, Alberta and British Columbia, in order to ascertain definitely and finally the feasibility of the Hudson Bay route as an outlet for our commodities, and to decide upon the best means of constructing a railway by that route to tide water, whereby the long land haul may be divided by one-half and the ocean voyage to European ports also materially decreased.

The Liberals of Saskatchewan also met in convention and adopted a somewhat different course. They passed a resolution in the following words : .

That in the opinion of this convention the early construction of a railway to Hudson bay is essential to the full development and progress of western Canada, including the province of Saskatchewan, and that the building of the road should be arranged for as a federal work in the general interests of Canada as a whole; and

Re it further resolved, that it shall be the immediate duty of the provincial authorities to press upon the Dominion government for the early completion of the project.

It will thus be seen that the same party in the two provinces differed materially as to the method of constructing the road. As to Manitoba, both political parties have been pledged to the construction of the road, both of them have placed money and guaranteed assistance in.the statute-book of that province many years ago, so that while there may be a difference of opinion In regard to the method of construction, there is no dif-

ference of opinion in the west in regard to the necessity of the road.

I know that objections have been offered, such as have been referred to by my colleagues in the House to-day. These objections have been offered by those who do not seem to greatly favour the entei'prise. These are such objections as that the route could never be navigable by reason of fogs and floating ice. Another strongly urged alleged reason is that the season of navigation would not be long enough to make it a profitable commercial enterprise. As to the question of fogs we have only to look up the history of the steamers that have already gone up there for the express purpose of testing the practicability of that route, and in every case it will be found that the captains of these steamers report that they were not as greatly troubled with fogs on that route as they would be off the coast of Newfoundland; they Teport that the St. Lawrence route is in some respects more dangerous than the Hudson Bay route would be. We all know to-day that there are people who, not from disinterested motives, try to decry our own St. Lawrence route, but still what would Canada be to-day without that route? It has been decried by rival enterprises and we have often heard complaints of discrimination by insurance companies against the St. Lawrence route on the ground of its being more dangerous than the New York route. These are objections that can all be dispelled, and as far as the navigability of Hudson straits is concerned, the steamers there have reported that there is four to five months of open navigation. We all know that in years gone by even our own great west was belittled. It was claimed not only by outsiders but even by those resident in our own country that it was only fit for the home of Indians and buffalo, and that no railway through it would ever pay as a commercial enterprise. Recently I came across a clipping from a Montreal newspaper of many years ago, and I shall read a short extract from it in order to show the opinion of our great Northwest as an agricultural country held in the east at that time. It will emphasize the great change of opinion that has taken place in this respect. This is from the Montreal 'Transcript ' of 1856 :

The Red river is an oasis in the midst of a desert, a vast, treeless prairie on which scarcely a shrub is to "be seen. The climate is unfavourable to the growth of grain; the summer though warm enough is too short in duration, so that even the few fertile spots could with difficulty mature a potato or a cabbage.

That is the opinion of an eastern newspaper of 1856, of what I and the members of this House regard as the future granary of the British empire. All these fertile plains with their miles of waving grain, have been opened up, and I wish to give due credit to the transportation company that Mr. W. J. ROCHE.

has opened up that great country. Had it not been for its efforts we would not to-day require the Hudson Bay route. Just as experience has demonstrated the fallacy of this opinion of the Montreal ' Transcript ' in regard to the fertility of the Northwest so we will be able to remove the prejudice and ignorance as to the Hudson Bay route. I feel that in less than a quarter of a century public opinion in regard to it will have very materially changed.

It has been stated that the Hudson Bay Company's vessels have been going in and out of the bay for 250 years, and the hon. member from Souris (Mr. Schaffner) who has been very industrious in looking up statistics, quoted to the House to-day the statement that out of 750 vessels going in and out of the bay in the course of that time, only two vessels have been lost. If that route were equipped with modern aids to navigation it would be even less dangerous than it has been in the past.

In Mr. Low's report I ran across two or three expressions in regard first to the necessity of the route and secondly to its navigability. Mr. Low says ;

The question of Hudson bay and Hudson strait has been before the Canadian public for a period extending back almost to the time of confederation.

The deputy Minister of Railways and Canals states that it is only at the present time in its talkative stage and here Mr. Low truly states that it has been engaging public attention almost since confederation.

An answer to this question has become more and more pressing, as the latent wealth of the grain fields of the Northwest has been proved, and as the present means of transport of this great volume of grain to the eastward become yearly less capable of handling it expeditiously and cheaply.

Within the past few years the yield of Northwest grain has increased enormously, and a second line of rails is being laid across the continent to aid in the rapid transport of this wealth to the sea-board. If the increase in the area of land opened annually to cultivation continues as at present, a few years will show such a volume of grain to be transported that the new outlets will be unable to give free exit to it, and a new lane by which it can be taken to the European markets must be found.

The route by rail to the port of Churchill, on the western side of Hudson bay, and from thence to Europe in ships, is the shortest, and is likely to prove the best, of all those outside the present routes by rail to the head waters of the St. Lawrence navigation.

Shins co wherever cargoes can be obtained, and all that is needed to open Hudson bay for ordinary commercial navigation is a line of rails to carry freight to one of its ports.

Evidently, Mr. Low, who has been up there during more than one season, and who has had an opportunity of making observations on behalf of the government, has no doubt, with respect to this enterprise

as evidenced by these statements which I have just read to the House. Apparently he has no doubt whatever as far as the navigability of Hudson bay is concerned, nor does he consider that there Is any question as to the navigability of Hudson strait in so far as the strait freezing over is concerned ; the only danger is in the frozen ice that comes down from the north. As to the period of navigation which has been referred to by previous speakers, Mr. Low has something to say. The bugaboo is raised by some hon. gentlemen that because you cannot haul the grain out during the same season, in which it is raised the route will be commercially unprofitable. I am not sure that Mr. Low is correct in his estimate of the quantity of grain exported during the same season, but this is what he says on that point:

The question of the storage of the grain until the season following the harvest, is at first sight a serious one, but when it is known that not 20 per cent of the grain at present reaches the sea-board before the opening of navigation of the year following that in which it is harvested this objection practically disappears, but the grain may be as well stored on the shores of Hudson bay as in the elevators on the plains, or at Fort William. The question of storage is reduced to the length of time between the opening of navigation of Hudson strait, and the time required to transport grain from Fort William to Montreal after the opening of navigation on the great lakes, and this difference in time may be measured by days.

So that, if Mr. Low is an authority on that point, there is no great difficulty to be overcome in regard to the question of the storage of the grain. It might just as well be stored there as at Fort William or in the interior elevators. It has been said that 1,000 miles of rail haul will be saved. That is very true. To-day we have a ten cent rate between Winnipeg and Fort Willihm, a distance of 425 miles. If it is six cents a bushel for 425 miles, it would be 12 cents, that would be saved per bushel for 1,000 miles, but it would be really more than that.

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CON

Thomas Simpson Sproule

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. SPROULE.

I thought it was ten cents from Brandon.

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CON

William James Roche

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. W. J. ROCHE.

No, from Winnipeg. As a matter of fact the rate east of Fort William, by rail, is higher, so that probably 12 or 15 cents per bushel would be saved. If the statement of the last speaker is correct that there would be an export of

20,000,000 bushels by this route, it would mean a saving of upwards of $3,000,000 per annum. That $3,000,000 might just as well be put into the hands of the farmers of the Northwest as into the hands of the transportation companies. Certainly nobody is more deserving of it than those whose products are being marketed and they do not wish to 2024

enter into a partnership with the carrying companies and pay an excessive rate of freight, I think they have a right to.benefit in the saving which the construction of this railway would bring about.

The question of the land grant has been referred to. I am not going to go extensively into this because my hon. friend from Calgary (Mr. McCarthy) has referred to it, nor would I refer to it were it not for the fact that the bon. member for West Assiniboia, during the discussion of this question, treated the subject from a party standpoint. He tried to make a little capital against my hon. friend the leader of the opposition for not having incorporated in his Halifax platform anything in regard to the Hudson Bay route. But. we noticed that the hon. gentleman who introduced this resolution also introduced it last year, that he brought it forward on going into Supply and that there was a discussion upon it. What became of that motion we do not know. It was never withdrawn or voted upon and there is no record to show what became of it. Certainly it has not been acted upon, and although the Prime Minister declared that the question was engaging the attention of the government and that he would declare his policy no statement was made by the right hon. gentleman up to the end of last session. Still, the hon. member for West Assiniboia does not take his leader to task because of his non-fulfilment of his pledge, and although five months of this session have passed we are still without any statement from his leader. So, the hon. gentleman had better obtain a statement of the position and policy of his own leader before he undertakes to reflect upon the leader of the opposition party in regard to his policy upon this question. My hon. friend from* Calgary has already stated that when the Liberals claim that they have not tied up one acre of land for railway purposes since they came into power they are saying something which they cannot substantiate. We know how they made the welkin ring on the western hustings when the elections were on as to how they had carried out their platform with regard to the granting of lands for railway construction, and we know they announced that when a particular railway charter which had expired since the government came in, that of the Red Deer Valley Railway Company, the land grant of necessity expired as well. They stated that the government, when they were asked to renew the charter, refused to renew the land grant showing that not an acre of land would be alienated for the purpose of building our railways. We are not condemning the voting of land or saying that we are not in a position to defend the voting of land in the past for the purpose of securing railway systems. We could not have had our railway systems

built were it not for the grants of land which were made. But, Sir, when these hon. gentlemen say that they have not given an acre of land for the purpose of building railways they have done so in regard to this very road, ostensibly for the purpose of building a line ostensibly to Hudson bay when really a portion of it was given not to build a road in the direction of Hudson bay but to build a road in the direction of Prince Albert. This charter has expired on more than one occasion. Did they drop their land grant when they renewed their charter ? Did they. do as they did in the case of the Red Deer Talley Railway Company ? Not at all. Prior to 1896, there was placed on the statute-books a subsidy of $80,000 per annum for transport and mail service over this road. That was placed on the statute-book by the Conservative administration. That was changed by order in council on May 7, 1896 into $40,000 per annum to the Lake Manitoba Railway Company for a line from Portage La Prairie or Gladstone to a point on the Saskatchewan river, and the time was extended for the construction of the road until December 31, 1898. That was the position of affairs when the Liberals came into power. Of course, they had a land grant and it would expire on that date, less these two years, after this administration came into power. By an order in council of October 22, 1898, they authorized the deflection of the line from the mouth of the Saskatchewan river to the Swan river country, they also extended the time to December 31, 1899, for 125 miles, and there was further an extension of the land grant which was practically a renewal of the land grant although these hon. gentlemen claimed that they gave no land grant to the Red Deer Talley Railway Company. They gave 6,400 acres per mile within the province of Manitoba and 12.800 acres per mile without the boundaries of that province. Then again an order in council was passed on October 19, 1899, granting a further extension of time until July 10, 1904.

That was extension number two. Then, again, on the 20th of February. 1900. they granted a further extension of time to the 10th of July, 1906. Again a land grant renewed. An order in council was passed on the 5th of January, 1907, for 125 miles from Sifton Junction, and this was approved of for subsidy purposes. An order in council was also passed on the 9th of October, 1900, and the engineer reported 250 miles completed and entitled to the land grant of 1,598,400 acres. That is what they had earned up to that time and of which they had selected 2,835. Another order in council was passed on the 5th of June, 1901, under which they had selected and had been granted S9.115:59 acres. Another order in council followed on the 11th September, Mr. W. J. ROCHE

1901, under which 168,202 acres were selected and transferred to the company. Another order in council passed on the 10th of August, 1903, and it was reported that at this time the Canadian Northern 'had in running order from Beaver to Gladstone, 18 miles, Gladstone to Winnipegosis, 124 miles, Sifton Junction to Mafeking, 125 miles, Mafeking to tlie boundary, 28 miles, the boundary to Irwood, 22 miles, total 3l8 miles. Now, as the member for Calgary (Mr. M. S. McCarthy) has truly said, of that 320 miles there was subsidized the most of it to the extent of 6,400 acres per mile, some of it at 12,800 acres per mile, and when you get to the termination of the the 320 miles you are only within 150 miles or 170 miles nearer to Hudson bay than when you started. By reason of allowing the deflection westward and getting away from the hay, they drew that large land grant, and yet at the end of 320 miles they were no nearer than 150 or 170 miles to the bay than they were at Gladstone where they commenced. Now, on this 320 miles they were entitled to a land grant of 2,1S0,928 acres. But they claimed that some of these lands set apart for selection were not fairly fit for settlement and the government then allpwed them a great number of concessions, amongst others : they enlarged their area of selection to include the territory reserved for the Manitoba and Northwestern, that is, after the Manitoba and Northwestern had selected their lands in a particular area, this company were allowed to go in and ^ select the surplus of lands, and of the surplus of lands they were to select 100,000 acres out of the area of 124,330. They were also allowed to select from the reserve set apart for the Qu'Appelle, Long Lake and Saskatchewan, and the time for completion of selection was extended to the 31st December, 1905. An order in council was passed on the 27th January, 1904, under which they selected this 100,000 acres from the Manitoba and Northern reserve, another order in council was passed on the 1st October, 1904, under which the land grant they had earned on lines south of the Saskatchewan was extended to June the 25th, 1908. Another extension of time and another revival of the land grant. Now, an order in council was also passed on the 29th December, 1904, under which the survey fee was reduced from 10 cents an acre to 5 cents an acre. Up to this time they had been paying ten cents an acre for the survey, but the government made a concession to them reducing it one-half. There was also some land that they had to surrender for Doukho-bor reserve, the Riding Mountain forest reserve in which they had selected west of the Duck mountains, and a certain amount along the Prince Albert branch. The lands necessary to complete their selection were to be selected from 55 townships west of the area set apart for the Qu'Appelle, Long

Lake and Saskatchewan. Not only were they allowed to go into the Manitoba and Northern reserve, not only were they allowed to go into the reserve set apart for the Qu'Appelle, Long Lake and Saskatchewan, but they were allowed to go into the 55 townships west of the Qu'Appelle, Long Lake and Saskatchewan^ reserve and where are situated some of the very be'st lands they have in the province of Saskatchewan. From these 55 townships, which have an area, by the way, of 580,000 acres, they had to select in round numbers some 250.000 acres. By an order in council passed on the 25th of June, 1906, the Canadian Northern Railway selected 557,000 acres within the reserve of the Qu'Appelle, Long Lake and Saskatchewan. I may say just here that the latter company protested very strenuously to the government for allowing this company to go in and select from their lands prior to the time they themselves had made their selection, because the order in council passed allowing the Canadian Northern Railway to have the privilege of selecting from tlie area set apart for the Qu'Appelle, Long Lake and Saskatchewan contained a provision stating that they were only to select the surplus lands. That is to say, after the grant of Qu'Appelle, Long Lake and Saskatchewan had been satisfied. After that was done the Canadian Northern had the privilege of coming in as they had in the Manitoba and Northwestern area and making their selection, but they went in and made their selection of some 250,000 acres prior to the Qu'Appelle, Long Lake and .Saskatchewan having completed selection'and quite naturally the Qu'Appelle, Long Lake and Saskatchewan protested to the government. The matter was reported to the Minister of Justice by the Minister of the Interior and the Minister of Justice reported that what the Minister of the Interior did was illegal ; that he had done an illegal act by allowing the Canadian Northern to go into this area and make their selection prior to the time when the Qu'Appelle, Long Lake and Saskatchewan land grant had been satisfied. But notwithstanding that and in the face of the opinion of the Minister of Justice, the Minister of the Interior allowed the Canadian Northern Railway to make their selection. An order [DOT] in council was passed on the 23rd of July, 1906, which allows them to select their lands which they had surrendered for the Duck mountain forest reserve, 213,640 acres, and for the Lake Manitoba forest reserve

70,000 acres, and they accepted in lieu thereof 33,367 acres of the surplus lands of the Manitoba and Northwestern and 250.000 acres in the 55 townships west of the area of the Qu'Appelle, Long Lake and Saskatchewan. Again an order in Council was parsed on May 8, 1907, granting a further extension of time-and this is the last order in council I have any note of-to July 20, 1910, and this is an extension both of the

land grant and of the charter. In face of that some hon. gentleman on the other side of the House claim that this government has not alienated an acre of land for the construction of any railway. I have cited no less than five extensions since they have been in power with reference to the construction of this road. I am citing this to disabuse the minds of the people of the idea that the Liberals were reallv in earnest ; or at least if they were in earnest they are certainly making, through inadvertence or ignorance, a statement which cannot be substantiated. I am not quoting this with any idea of stating that we on this side of the House object to granting assistance to any of these railway enterprises. In fact the Conservative party showed their faith in the country and showed their faith in the enterprise by placing the land grant originally upon the statute-books. Now, it is not necessary for me to occupy the attention of the House further ;

I'merely desire to add my voice to that of my colleagues in favour of this enterprise. This railway is a work that we need very greatly. By the time it is constructed there will be plenty of products to supply all of our transportation companies. The productiveness of that country is so enormous and the immigration going in, now that the tide has set in that direction, is so great that I am confident that there will soon be sufficient traffic for the Hudson Bay Railway route in addition to those we have at present. The people of eastern Canada are' especialy interested in the supplies that the people of the west will require. Anything that assists us in the west will assist the people in the east. This enterprise is one that we should look upon as a national enterprise in which as Canadians we should all join. I hope that before this discussion ends, the Prime Minister will announce a policy on the subject on behalf of the government, and I trust that whatever pledge he may make will be implemented by legislation in a practical manner, and that the enterprise which hon. gentlemen say is today only in the talkative stage, may soon lie an accomplished fact.

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LIB

Theodore Arthur Burrows

Liberal

Mr. T. A. BURROWS (Dauphin).

Mr. Speaker, I have listened with a great deal of pleasure to the various speeches which have been delivered this afternoon and this evening on this very important question. Some of the gentlemen on both sides of the House who have spoken, have given the history of the different steps that have been taken from time to time by the western people to secure an outlet by way of Hudson bay. The subject has been pretty well covered by previous speakers, and were it not that I represent a constituency which is the farthest north in Manitoba and therefore the nearest Hudson to bay. and in which the first 200 miles of the Hudson Bay Railway have been built and operated, and feel a special interest in seeing a road to

the bay completed, I do not think I would have risen to address the House. The hon. gentleman who has just sat down (Mr. W.

J. Roche) seems to have risen more for the purpose of making a complaint against this government for the action they have taken in assisting in railway construction than with the object of advocating the construction of a railway to Hudsons bay. He objected to the extensions granted to the Canadian Northern Railway from time to time since 1896 by the Liberal government, but he forgot altogether

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CON

Thomas Simpson Sproule

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. SPROULE.

He did not object at all.

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LIB

Theodore Arthur Burrows

Liberal

Mr. BURROWS.

Well, he criticised the government very severely ; but he forgot that the original charter authorizing the construction of this railway was granted in the year 1880, and that from that time until 1896, when the government he supported so strenuously went out of power, there was not a single mile of that railway built, although the charter and the land grant were extended from time to time. What took place after this government came into power ? In 1896, their first year, the first 100 miles of the Canadian Northern Railway were built. That was the portion from Gladstone to Sifton Junction, which was built under the charter of the Lake Manitoba Railway and Canal Company. In the following year they built the extension to Winnipegosis, which was the total mileage they had power to build under that charter. The hon. gentleman knows that by virtue of that charter they earned a land grant of 6,400 acres per mile from Gladstone to Winnipegosis. The hon. member for Calgary (Mr. M. S. McCarthy) made a great complaint of the fact that there was a land grant for that portion of the road from Sifton Junction to Winnipegosis.

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CON

Maitland Stewart McCarthy

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. M. S. MCCARTHY.

I did not make any great complaint of the land grant given for the line from Sifton Junction to Winnipegosis. I asked what was the necessity of giving that, and also giving a land grant for a line running in a northeasterly direction. Both could not be going to Hudson bay.

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LIB

Theodore Arthur Burrows

Liberal

Mr. BURROWS.

The necessity for giving the land grant for the portion from Sifton to Winnipegosis was that it was authorized by an Act passed by the Conservative government before the Liberals came into power. Before leaving that part of the subject, I might refer to the extensions granted from time to time. There have been various extensions granted by the present government to the Canadian Northern; but it must be borne in mind that the Canadian Northern built 100 miles of railway in 1896 and another 100 miles in 1897, and have continued to add to their mileage year by year; so that there was some reason for their asking for extensions of time when Mr. BURROWS.

they showed their bona fides by going on and constructing the road. That was an altogether different state of things from what existed from 1880 to 1896, when not a single mile was built. With regard to a railway to Hudson bay. I may repeat what has been said by the hon. gentleman who has just taken his seat, that ever since Manitoba entered the confederation, indeed, ever since there was a settlement in any portion of that western country, there has been an agitation for the construction of a railway to Hudson bay. Probably this originated from the fact that the first settlers in the Red River settlement went into that country via Hudson bay, and therefore looked on the Hudson bay route as the natural trade route of the country, and looked forward to the time when they would not have to spend a month or six weeks on the journey to Fort Churchill, portaging around rapids, but would have railway connection with that seaport. Any person who looks at the map and observes the position of Hudson bay will easily recognize what an important factor it may yet become in the trade of the western country. It is an inland sea 1,000 miles long and 600 miles wide, and its principal port, Fort Churchill, is so situated that it is farther from the Atlantic coast than it is from the Pacific ocean. So that if you can once establish proper navigation to Fort Churchill, you will have an ocean port in the centre of the country 600 miles from the prairie, and bringing the prairie country closer to the sea-board than some parts of the province of Ontario. If you draw a line due north from St. Paul or St. Louis, it will pass 250 miles east of Fort Churchill. What the White Sea is to Russia, what the Baltic is to Germany and Sweden, what the Gulf of St. Lawrence is to eastern Canada, the Hudson bay is bound to become to Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Alberta. In 1S80 the first charters were granted to two companies giving them power to build railways to Hudson bay. They vied with each other to get the land grant. Three years afterwards au Act of parliament was passed amalgamating the two companies, and from that time on the promoters of the Winnipeg and Hudson Bay Railway Company endeavoured to raise money by various means.

They went to the local government and got assistance from time to time. They tried first to float their bonds in the markets of the world, but in those days it was impossible to raise money to build a railway to the bay. By and by, in addition to the land grant the Dominion government gave them a further subvention of $80,000 a year for twenty years, but even then they were not able to raise sufficient money to build the road. It was not until after 1896, when Mackenzie & Mann & Company, obtained the charter, that any work was done in the construction of this railway. It will be seen

that the parliament of Canada from 1880 on, under the direction of both governments, has from time to time recognized the importance of a railway to Hudson bay. It has done this by various enactments, by giving them a charter to build and a land grant. In 1884 an Act was passed authorizing the granting a land subsidy of 6,400 acres per mile for the mileage inside the province and 12,800 acres per mile for the mileage outside the province. In 1996 construction began and a year and a half ago the last 90 miles were built to the Pass. A year ago the company finished the last link connecting the southern prairie country with the Saskatchewan river, so that to-day we have a railway built as far as the Saskatchewan and the proposition now is to build a link which will connect the Pass with Hudson bay.

When the charter was first granted giving power to build this railway, we did not know much of that northern country, but during the last twenty-five years a great many surveying parties were sent out. The government sent out members of the geological survey and others and we have learned from them a great deal of information. We have found that instead of that country being full of rocks and swamps and not fit for settlement there is along the projected line of this road a great deal of territory valuable for agriculture. Commencing at the Pass there is for 150 miles a country containing a very large amount of pulp wood. Hr. Thibeaudeau, who made a survey for the government last year, reports that pulp wood can be obtained along that route for the first distance of 150 miles. After that the reports from many men who have explored that territory, indicate that there is in it a large area of agricultural land, and the lakes and rivers are teeming with valuable food fish. Mr. Tyrrell reports an area of country there of 10,000 square miles as good as the ordinary land in Manitoba. North of that the country is sot so good. Within 100 miles of the bay the reports indicate that the land is not very fit for settlement, but it seems to me that a country having 10,000 square miles of good land is a country through which we ought to have a railway. When you consider that in Manitoba, where we have a very large wheat yield, there were not more than 5,000,000 acres under crop last year, you can see what possibilities there are along this line of railroad, which will surely open up 6,000,000 acres to agriculture. There are besides natural resources such as mineral wealth which are very promising. Mr. Tyrrell and other geologists say that the formation is very similar to that of the western part of Ontario where we have discovered much valuable mineral. The railway will run along the Nelson river a distance of 50 to 75 miles, and the Nelson is one of the greatest rivers in point of volume of water, we have in the whole continent. It is 400 miles long and drains a very large area. In these 400

miles there are 300 miles from the upper to the lower rapids, and between those there is a fall of 850 feet, so that the water power which may be generated is tremendous, and if it should become expedient to run the road by electricity, the water power is there at hand. Churchill harbour is reported to be one of the best in America. There are therefore several grounds on which the construction of this road can be justified. In the first place it will be a colonization road. In the second place, it will be the final link connecting the prairies with Hvidson bay ; and in the third place, it will open up a route to connect the western prairies with the markets of Europe. Some objection has been taken to the grants for building the portions of the line already completed. No doubt the grants seems to be large. In addition to the land grant, this railway draws a subsidy of $80,000 a year for twenty years. But when we look at what has been accomplished by its construction, we will see that the expenditure has been well repaid. The whole country through which this railway runs was not settled and would never have become settled had it not been for that line. That line has opened up an important fishing industry at lake Winnipegosis and very large lumber industries in the northern part of the province, so that although it has cost a great deal in money and land, it has developed that northern country in a marvelous manner.

There is a very large area around Hudson bay which we know contains natural resources, which it would be very important to develop, and the development of which can only be accomplished by means of a railway to that bay. Then at present the Canadian government is undertaking to administer that country. It has established mounted police stations around the bay. But if this government wants to communicate with these police stations, that will take a long time at present. The building of a railway, however, would facilitate the administration of that whole locality by the government. Then when the railway is built to the bay, stores will be established at various points from where prospectors can get their supplies. It will be easy for prospectors to get to the bay, and they will then use Fort Churchill as the point from which to start their exploring work. In two or three years after that railway is built to Hudson bay, you will see great development in the line of minerals, for we have as good reason to anticipate great mineral development in that country as we had to expect mineral development at Cobalt six years ago or in the Yukon fifteen years ago. The reports of Dr. Bell, Professor Tyrrell and other geologists indicate that there is gold, silver, lead, iron, copper-

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CON

Francis Ramsey Lalor

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. LABOR.

Any timber ?

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LIB

Theodore Arthur Burrows

Liberal

Mr. BURROWS.

Lots of timber can be found around the shores of the bay. With regard to the land through which this road would pass, I would like to read an extract from the report of the men who explored that country. Mr. Mclnnes, a member of the Geological Survey, was sent out to make an exploratory trip from the Pas to Hudson bay and he gives this as his opinion regarding the country in his evidence before the committee of the Senate a year ago :

The witness passed through this country, went by the Burntwood river and came back by Dart of the Grassy river, and made a number of excursions inland between these two rivers. After leaving Split lake, ascending the river, this clay-covered country shows absolutely no boulders and no gravel. Even the shores of the lakes, until you reach a height of about 800 feet, show no gravel bars at all.

There is absolutely nothing to interfere with the cultivation of tbe soil there. It is a country that has been burnt over. Witness assumed that the Burntwood river got its name that way. It has been subject to repeated burns. At the present time it is covered by a very open forest. Grasses grow fairly luxuriantly. There are two species of this, blue joint grass and a wild rye, that are the prevailing grasses. He understood, though he is not very familiar with those grasses himself, from Professor Macoun, that these are very excellent meadow grasses and make excellent fodder.

Mr. Mclnnes left Norway House in the second week of .Tune and made the circuit and came out at the Pas on September 6, so it was June, July and August he was there. He saw grass growing from eighteen inches to two feet high.

The witness computed the area of this country at about 10,000 square miles. He does not mean to sav that ail of that ten thousand square miles is good land, but the basin characterized by this deposit of clay has an area of about ten thousand square miles.

Referring to what is grown in the country, he says :

Upon the Nelson river wheat has been grown successfully at Norway House, and also at Cross lake. Of course, he could see that they grow no grain at any of their posts nowadays. In the old days they grew it and ground it in hand mills. Witness saw potatoes that were grown about 50 miies north of the Pas. There were quite showy potatoes, great large fellows like those you see exhibited in fairs.

There are no settlers in tbe Nelson district. The Indians, however, grow potatoes at several points, even in the northern part of it, as far north as Nelson House, about latitude 55. On July 11, when the witness arrived at Nelson House, the Indian potatoes had vines about eleven inches high, and were almost ready to flower. When he got out on September G to the Saskatchewan, at the Hudson bay post there, at tbe Pas, Indian corn was very well headed out, with very large tine ears quite ready for table use, and there was no frost until September 29. He knew that because he stayed there until then.

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CON

Francis Ramsey Lalor

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. LABOR.

With eighteen hours of the daylight, and no frost in the summer, vegetation is rapid. In a country where you can ripen Indian corn you can grow practically anything.

Mr. Tyrrell passed through that country some years ago, and this is the evidence he gave to the Senate Committee:

North of Lake Winnipeg there is another magnificent area of from five to ten thousand square miles of as fine country as there is in Manitoba or anywhere else.

That is on t he proposed line of the Hudson bay railway. When the witness came out of there a number of years ago, after spending a summer there, and said there was a rich agricultural country north of Lake Winnipeg, tbe Hudson bay men and the people in the southern country pooh-poohed the idea. They said they had been up at the head of the lake and knew there was not a foot of good land there. But there is a magnificent stretch of country there, and it extends westward along the Churchill. These lands north of Lake Winnipeg are clay lands, an extension of the same basin as the Manitoba clays.

The hon. member for Souris (Mr. Sehaff-. ner) this afternoon, spent a good deal of time in setting forth the fact concerning the navigability of Hudson straits. I think the hon. member is to he commended for the diligence he has shown in hunting up the history of this northern country and the waters thereof. I do not see how anybody can assume that Hudson bay is not navigable, when you take into consideration the fact that it has been navigated since 1610. Since 1600, vessels have gone in and out of the bay once every year except two years. The Hudson Bay Company keep regular vessels on the route. For the last sixty or seventy years whalers from the Atlantic coast have been making periodical trips in pursuit of their calling. We have the record of trips made into the hay by all kinds of vessels. In the service of the Hudson Bay Company 750 vessels, ranging from seventy gun ships to ten ton pinnaces, have crossed the ocean and passed through the straits and sailed into Hudson bay and only two of them were lost. We have the record of men-of-war going into Hudson bay in 1782. La Perouse. with three French war vessels sailed into Hudson bay, took Fort Churchill, dismantled it, took Fort Nelson, looted the supplies and sailed out successfully in 1697. Commandant d'Iberville sailed into Hudson bay, fought an engagement with English battleships and got out quite safe again. From time, to time during the wars between France and England, it was necessary for the Hudson Bay Company when their ships sailed into Hudson bay to have a convoy, and it was quite a common thing for a British warship to go with a trading vessel into and out of Hudson bay. If it was possible to carry on this navigation with the vessels of a couple of hundred years ago. when they did not have the advantages of navigation of to-day, when they had no steam vessels and none

of tire alls to navigation such as lighthouses the route must have been a pretty easy one to navigate or we should have heard of more disasters. Our own government has sent in several parties to make investigations. Dr. Robert Bell travelled in and out from 38SO to 1897. making nine complete trips. He gives this as his experience :

The bay is open all the year round and there does not seem to be much evidence thqt the strait is closed at any season. The great width and depth of the straits with the tides, probablv keep it open. He thought it navigable for four months each year, or from the middle of June to the end of October.

And Commander Low says:

Really prepared steamers could navigate Hudson bay and Hudson strait longer than the period he had mentioned; you could navigate the straits all winter if you had a specially prepared vessel, but it would be a long voyage. . . . Altogether, the witness considered the Hudson bay route, when it was clear, as even a clearer one than via the St. Lawrence. There is at least two months when there is no trouble from the ice at all, and when you do meet loose ice in the summer time there would be no trouble. There would have to be several lights established. There would have to be lights at Nottingham island and probably at Cape Diggs. Charlatan island would probably have to be lit at both ends, because it is practically in the middle of the channel and then there would have to be lights at Cape Chigney and on Resolution island. Lights would also have to be placed at the mouth of Churchill harbour.

I think we have ample evidence to show that the navigability of this strait is sufficient to warrant the government coming to the conclusion that, for a certain period of the year, this route will afford a means of transportation of the greatest benefit to the western country. In addition to the benefit to be derived from the improved transportation facilities afforded toy the construction of this road, it will mean the development of a portion of our northern country which we never could have developed without a railway. Immigration to the west during the last 11 years has given us our prosperity in that country. According to the returns, nearly 1,200,000 people have been brought in by the Immigration Department during that period. The impetus to trade given bv the influx of that number of people and the amount of money spent in railway construction has produced our good times in the west. To stop immigration would be to decrease the volume of our business, and the only way to keep up the stream of immigration is to develop the northern country where we have land on which to put our settlers. Until the present government undertook to build the Grand Trunk Pacific, no determined effort had been made to develop our hinterlands. At the time they launched their scheme many people objected on the ground that the country through which

the road was to be built was not fit for settlement. Even to-day, in talking to a a Conservative member of this House, he expressed the opinion that it was a great mistake to build north of the height of land in Ontario and Quebec, because the country was not fit for settlement, and it was said that the Grand Trunk Pacific would be a great mistake. I think the majority of the people of Canada have only one opinion on that subject: that is that we have a great big country to develop and we never can develop it unless we get railway construction to the most remote parts.

With regard to the method of construction, I believe the road should be built and owned by the government, and inasmuch as there is in eastern Canada considerable objection to voting sufficient money to build a road of that kind at the present time, I believe that it will have to be constructed by obtaining money from the sale of lands in the west. The people of the west are a unit in regard to the construction of this road, and I do not think any objection will be raised to the government of Canada using the proceeds of the sale of land to create a fund for the building of this railway. The expenditure on the road itself will not be very large, but the incidental expenditures for the building- of docks at Port Churchill, for terminals, for lighting the straits and probably giving a subsidy to a steamship line, will be considerable in addition to the actual cost of construction of the railway. The road will be an easy one to build and when built to operate. There is a gentle downgrade from the Pas to Hudson bay and a fall in 450 miles of about 1,000 feet. It will be down grade in the way the traffic will go so that trains loaded with grain will be going down-hill on their way to the harbour. I think it is very important .that this road should be built at once. Any one familiar with the western country knows that two years ago we had a very large crop of wheat, about 200,000,000 bushels of grain ; and before the commencement of the snow blockade to which the railways attributed all their difficulties, there was* a complete tie-up of the railway systems, a complete grain blockade. At that time we had in that country some 800,000 people. If 800,000 people can grow enough grain to blockade two complete railway systems, what will occur when the population increases in that country as it is bound to increase ? To-day in Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Alberta, we have about 1,000,000 people and I do not think I am over-sanguine when I express the belief that within the next four years that population will be doubled. In 1901 the population was a little over 400.000. In 1906 it was over 800,000, and, judging from the way immigration is going in there, it is safe to say that in four years we will have 2,000,000

people west of the Great Lakes. When that time comes, probably we will have another railway, the Grand Trunk Pacific; but by the time the Grand Trunk Pacific is built we will find that the trade has so increased that it will tax the powers of the three great railway systems to haul out the grain. The road should undoubtedly be built at once. If the government were to undertake the construction of this road at once, it would be four years before they could expect to have it built to the bay and it will be urgently needed before that time. If the government were to build the road they could easily entrust its construction to the present Transcontinental Railway Commission; they have the machinery at hand for looking after work of that kind and could superintend the building of the Hudson bay railway without very much extra general expense. If this road is built it will facilitate the opening of the country; that country has to be surveyed and this will require some time, and the building of the road will facilitate the surveying, exploration and development of the country. I do not think the government could get any railway company to undertake the construction of that road unless they gave a bonus equal to the cost of building it. I do not think the people of Canada would favour giving any bonus of that kind. The day of large bonuses or land grants is past, and it is the fixed policy of this government not to give a land grant to any railway. I am therefore strongly of opinion that the government should at once address itself to the question of finding some means by which this railway could be built, and I am in favour of the policy which was enunciated by the hon. member for Brandon (Mr. Sifton), that is to set apart certain lands in the Northwest, two sections or so in each township, preserve them until they become of sufficient value, and then sell them just as the school lands are sold at the present time to create a fund to pay the cost of construction of this road. The government could borrow money by the issue of bonds and by the time the bonds fall due the proceeds of the sales of these lands could be applied to paying them off. If you sold the lands to-day you would not get nearly what they will be worth in a few years. Objection has been raised to that scheme on the ground that reserving land is a detriment to settlement. However the amount reserved, two sections in each township, w'ould not be sufficient to affect the people in the district. You do not find that the present school reserves affect the people. However, whatever scheme is devised, whether the road is financed by means of a land grant reserve or by charging a fee of $3 for preemption, it is a question of policy which the government has to decide upon and so far as I am concerned the building of the road is so urgent that I Mr. BURROWS.

feel It should be constructed and constructed at once.

The public feeling in regard to the con-stuction of this railway has been so strong in the west that if the provinces of Manitoba and Saskatchewan had owned land of their own they would not have hesitated to have given it towards the construction of this railway. I have no hesitation in saying that if Manitoba had owned land for the last twenty years the same as Ontario and Quebec do this road would have been built long ago. The little province of Manitoba did not have the resources to devote to a project of this kind. We have been coming year after year to Ottawa asking the Dominion government to undertake its construction. As soon as this road is built I expect there will be considerable development In the way of manufacturing along the Hudson bay route. The water-powers along the Nelson and Churchill rivers will become developed. There is a possibility of a great pulp industry being established along the Nelson and Churchill rivers. Pulp wood and water-powers are available and as soon as this road is built Industries of that kind will crop up that are not thought of at the prestent time.

I do not know that I have anything further to say on this subject except that I think that the construction of the Hudson Bay Railway is one of the most important projects which the government have before them at the present time. By the construction of this road they will not only give us a new outlet for the products of the western country but they will be establishing another port which will in time become one of the chief ports of the Dominion of Canada, and they will be turning the trade to our own ports instead of allowing it to go, as a great deal of it goes now, through American ports. I trust therefore that the government will see their way clear to adopting some policy this session which will result in the construction of this road and that they will go on and build the railway to Hudson bay as quickly as possible.

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CON

Richard Stuart Lake

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. R. S. LAKE (Qu'Appelle).

favour of tlie building of a railway to Hudson bay and definite pledges were given by them to the people of this country that this railwav should be constructed. Sir Charles Tupper, then Prime Minister of Canada, speaking at Winnipeg on the Sth of May, as reported in the Manitoba ' Free Press,' said:

One of the great factors in the future development of Western Canada would he an outlet to Hudson bay, the natural pathway from the prairies of the great west to Great Britain, and it was his firm conviction that the prosperity of the west and of the whole Dominion called for the speedy construction of a road to the bay. The Liberal party had persistently though most inconsistently opposed this great national undertaking at every stage since the question of its construction was first mooted. The Conservative party had given to Canada the Intercolonial railway and the Canadian Pacific railway and he could now assure the people of Manitoba and the Northwest that that same party would give them the Hudson bay railway. The government was a unit on the policy of a road to the bay. They are publicly committed to that policy and he could assure them arrangements had been made which enabled him to state that the first link of that railway from Saskatchewan river would be built before the close of 1898.

Further on the Manitoba ' Free Press ' in an article states:

Speaking in the evening at an immense mass meeting in the Brydon rink the Premier returned to the subject and after challenging any man living to bring him face to face with a pledge he had ever broken he again declared in unequivocal terms that it would be the policy of his government to give the Northwest an outlet to Europe via the Hudson bay.

They go on to state:

Of the friendly intentions of Sir Charles and his colleagues there can be no doubt and after these explicit declarations the people of the country may reasonably expect to get the Hudson bay railway within the next three or four years.

Now, Sir, the statement made by Sir Charles Tupper and his bona fides were called in question by the Liberal candidates in the campaign, and in order to give an assurance of the bona fides of the statement, the Hon. Hugh John Macdonald, then Minister of the Interior, put himself on record before the people of Manitoba and in a speech delivered on the 18th of June, 1896, as reported in the Manitoba 1 Free Press,' said:

His breath was almost taken away at the first joint meeting when Mr. Martin said this promise of Sir Charles Tupper's was merely an election dodge. He could not understand how a man like Mr. Martin, who was once a member of the provincial government, could think that his leader would deliberately deceive his followers. However he remembered a trial here in Winnipeg when it came out that Mr. Martin had called Mr. Greenway a colossal liar. He might tell them that if these promises were not carried out he would resign Mr. LAKE.

at once from the cabinet. Some think that he should not resign from the cabinet, but rather stay there and fight it out. This could not be done under our system of government, if, as a member of the cabinet, he could not introduce a measure of this kind without the consent of his leader. If he should decide to introduce it, he would have to leave the cabinet and step down to the floor of the House, and this is the course he would follow in the event of Sir Charles breaking his promise. If he were forced to do this, do you think that there would be found a single man from the Northwest mean enough to accept his vacated seat in the cabinet, and even if one were found to do this, did they think any constituency in the west would return such a man?

Now, Sir, it will be seen that this is an old policy. It is a policy which was formally and definitely announced by the Conservative government in the year 1896 and which no doubt would have been carried into effect long before this had they been returned to power at that election.- I am glad that after 11 years of power the Prime Minister of Canada ha's finally come to the conclusion that the Hudson Bay Railway ought to be built, although he has not given us a statement as to when and now lie intends to build it,. I have no hesitation in saying, and it has been already said this evening, that in the near future the products of the Northwest will be such that all the existing lines of railway will not be able to handle the business. As a matter of fact the railways cannot cope with the situation now and so a new outlet must be found. As has been pointed out this route will result in enormous economy in transportation and consequently enhanced value to the producers of cattle, grain, and other commodities in the Northwest. As has also been pointed out it will save a double transhipment, and a thousand miles of lake and rail transport from the principal grain centres to the markets of the world. Further than that it has been shown that the Hudson Bay Railway will in itself prove a very profitable trade route, convenient as it will be not only to our own Northwest but to a large portion of the northwestern states of the union. Keeping along the northern lines of latitude, it will be an extremely short route across the continent, and it will be the most economic route that can be found between the western countries of Europe and the far eastern countries which are now coming into prominence. Let me also say that which I think has not been called attention to this evening, viz., this route will be most useful from a military standpoint. Should unhappily we ever be in a state of war in Canada such a line of railway would be most invaluable to Canada and to the empire, and it would also be invaluable as affording a safer trade route than any now. existing for the food supplies of the mother country. Even if we look at it from a selfish point of view it would give us an

immense advantage over any rivals we may have in the furnishing of that food supply because there can be no doubt that the northerly route would be the safest for the transport of food products to the United Kingdom. It would afford a short route also, the shortest of all routes by which imperial troops could be quickly and expeditiously and safely conveyed to the far east. This has all been gone over time and again and I do not think I need dwell further on it to-night. I believe, however, that it is time that we should stop playing with this question and if we are agreed as we all seem to be agreed that the route is necessary we should undertake its construction promptly. It is no use to go skating around it and saying for instance we will create a fund by the sale of pre-emptions or by reserving lands in the Northwest for the purpose. This is only postponing the fulfilment. Even if we start now, the need will be urgent before the railway is completed. The Finance Minister told us in his budget speech that this is a time for caution, and that large new enterprises may be laid aside for a while. I do not think, Sir, that caution ought to apply to the building of the Hudson Bay Railway. We do not look upon that as an enterprise in the ordinary acceptation of the term; we look upon it as an absolute necessity to the continued development of our great provinces in the Northwest. I am firmly convinced that unless it is provided that development will be cheeked in the near future.

In conclusion, I wish to say that I think * this road of all others should be owned by the government. The hon. member for Dauphin (Mr. Burrows) has taken the same position; but he has not gone so far as I go. I say that it should be not only owned but operated by the government. This Hudson Bay Railway will offer a route to the bay to three great competing lines of railway-the Canadian Pacific Railway, the Canadian Northern Railway and the Grand Trunk Pacific, and I do not see how it will be possible to have that road operated by a private company in a way that will be fair to all these great roads. Therefore I think that this of all others should be operated by the government. It will also be absolutely necessary for the Dominion government to provide the great terminal elevators which will be required for the storage of the grain of the Northwest for considerable periods when navigation is not freely open. I hope and trust that the government, even at this late moment, will come down with a definite policy during the present session and provide money for the commencement of this great undertaking.

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LIB

John Gillanders Turriff

Liberal

Mr. J. G. TURRIFF (East Assiniboia).

Mr. Speaker, at this late hour of the evening, after this question has been so ably discussed by members on both sides of the House. I do-not intend to take up more than

a very few minutes. My principal object in saying anything at all on this subject is to state most emphatically as a representative of a western constituency that I believe that the Hudson Bay route in not only feasible, but is to-day a prime necessity of the west. I have heard it stated here during the present discussion that there had been a certain amount of opposition to that road from the east. I think that was the case some years ago, but at present we do not hear of any opposition whatever from the east to any-thiifg that will promote the development of the western country. All the people of Canada now realize that the success of Canada is as much dependent on the west as on the east, and that anything that promotes the development of the western country must of necessity tend to the prosperity of the eastern part of Canada as well. Therefore I do not look for any opposition whatever at the present time from eastern Canada to the opening up of the Hudson Bay route. If that is not opened up, I think there is no doubt that the first year in which we shall have a large crop, there will be the biggest blockade that has ever taken place in the western country. We have heard it stated that the cause of the blockade two years ago was the heavy winter- the cold weather and the deep snow. That may have had something to do with the difficulties of the railroads in handling the traffic; but the blockade of wheat was not caused by the storms. It took place long before we had snow storms, at least a month before the severe winter set in. On some of the roads there was no blockade at all. The line from Portal to Moosejaw was not blockaded during the whole winter. Wherever the railway authorities were in a position to look after their roads and take precautions to have them in order they were not blockaded. What would be the result of a blockade such as we had two years ago, with almost double the acreage, and this increasing rapidly? During the past year some 270,000 immigrants have been brought into the country, and the statement has been made by one of the speakers today that during the first two months of this year the immigration has been 60 per cent greater than that of the first two months of last year. I am satisfied that the immigration is going not only to keep up, but to go on increasing, and that in all probability for the next five or ten years from 300,000 to

500,000 people a year will be going into that country. Where can we put all these people? We cannot for many more years put them in those parts of the country which are now opened up by railroads. They will have to be put in the northern part of the country, and a great many can be settled on the lands that will be opened up by the Hudson Bay Railway. It has been pointed out that the surveyors who went over that country last year, reported that in the Burnt River district there is an area of 10,000

6376.

square miles which is suitable for agriculture. That is about 6,000,000 acres, which is almost as much as we have under cultivation to-day in Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Alberta producing something like 200,000,000 bushels of grain. If that large area can be opened up for settlement and be made tributary to the railway to Hudson bay for a distance of 475 miles, is there not sufficient justification in the government coming to the point at once and taking hold of this work as a government undertaking and carrying it to a successful issue in-the shortest possible time? The development taking place in that western country is greater than the three existing roads can handle, and therefore, another outlet is necessary. I was rather amused to hear my hon. friend from Qu'Appelle (Mr. Lake) make the statement that if the late government had remained in power, the Hudson Bay Railway would have been an accomplished fact long before this. Well, I went to that country a good many years before the hon. gentleman. I went in 1878, and from 1878 to 1896, at every general election, the building of the Hudson Bay Railway was promised by the late government just as emphatically as it was promised by Sir Charles Tupper in 1896. In no case did any results follow. It was simply an election dodge all through, and had the late government been returned to power again in 1896, we would not be any further ahead to-day than we were eighteen years before that. I quite agree, however, that there is no use harking back to these old matters. Conditions have changed very much. The railroad is needed, and it is now up to the present government to take hold of its construction and build it at the earliest possible moment.

Some reference was made by my hon. friend from Calgary (Mr. McCarthy) to the land grant. He said that we on this side could no longer make the statement that the present government have not given any land for railway construction. My hon, friend is altogether wrong. I make the statement, without fear of successful contradiction, that this government has not given one acre in the west for the construction of railways. It is quite true that they carried out the undertakings which were entered into by their predecessors. Does any one suggest that they should not ? Does any one suggest that when the extending time for the construction of what is now called the Canadian Northern for two years, the Liberal government should have cancelled that order in council ? You might as well say that they should have cancelled all the contract for the construction of canals in this part of the country. The Canadian Northern Railway Company in 1896, during the life of that order in council, built over 100 miles of railway, and then came at the end of the two years and asked for a further exten-Mr. TURRIFF.

sion of time. That further extension was granted them simply because they were living up to their contract and carrying out the work they had undertaken. But from 1880, when the charter was granted, to 1896, when our friends opposite were in power, they granted a renewal every year or so although not a mile of the road was being built. When, however, this government took office, they undertook to see that the company went on to construct the line. So that we are perfectly right when we say that this government has not given one acre of land for the construction of railways in the west or any place else. And yet, during the eleven years they have been in office, there has been double the railway mileage constructed in the west that there was in the previous eighteen years, and save in the cases of roads to which land grants had been promised by the late government, these roads were constructed without land grants at all. In a good many cases they were built for a cash subsidy and in some cases without any subsidy at all.

The hon. member for Calgary (Mr. McCarthy) also said that this Hudson bay land grant had been diverted from its destination and used for the building of roads going away from Hudson bay. That is not a correct statement in any sense. The government, under the present Dominion Land Act. had the authority to give a grant of 6,400 acres per mile within Manitoba and 12,800 acres outside Manitoba to secure the construction of a railway to Hudson bay, and they passed an order in council setting apart a land grant for the construction of that railway, the charter for which had been acquired by the Canadian Northern. The land grant which was set apart for the construction of that portion of the road between the Pass on the Saskatchewan and Port Churchill provided that all that land should be north of the Saskatchewan river, and not one acre has ever been given to any other railway company or to the Canadian Northern for the construction of any other road, so that the statement of the hon. gentleman is altogether misleading. I would point that the government has power, under a clause in the Lands Act, to set apart a land grant of 12,800 acres per mile for the construction of a road from the Pas to Port Churchill. It is altogether a matter of policy whether they should do that or not. It might possibly be the best way to secure the construction of that road. I do not know that it would be, but it is open for the government to do that if they think it advisable. But nothing has been done in the past towards giving away the lands set apart at one time for the construction of that road to any other road or to the same company for building any other branch lines.

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?

Mr. J.@

I). REID. Were there special lands set apart for this?

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LIB

John Gillanders Turriff

Liberal

Mr. TURRIFF.

There was a large block north of the Saskatchewan river set apart by order in council, within which this company, if they built the road, could select their land. But the company did not build the road and the land grant lapsed and the government did not renew it. Under the Dominion Lands Act, however, the government have the authority to set apart 12,800 acres per mile in any part of the territory for the construction of that road. The clause in the Dominion Lands Act does not define where the lands should be taken. The old order in council did define it but that went out of existence by the fluxion of time.

Topic:   SUPPLY-RAILWAY TO HUDSON BAY.
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April 7, 1908