April 27, 1909

LIB

Daniel Duncan McKenzie

Liberal

Mp. McKENZIE.

It is to be found at page 356 of the * Life of Sir Wilfrid Laur-ier ' by Mr. Willison, editor of the ' News.'

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LIB

Daniel Duncan McKenzie

Liberal

Mr. McKENZIE.

Well, my hon. friend can go out into the library and get the book. I have not the date, but I suppose it is on the book written by Mr. Willison1. It is doubtless in the library and if my hon. friend will know his way out and if he has the capacity to read it I assume that he will find it. They have such excellent public schools in Ontario that I presume my hon. friend can read and he can see this quotation for himself, which, I think is not an overdrawn description of the Liberal party. It is as follows:

Moderation is the keynote of all his career :and the secret of all his achievements. He learned at the threshold of his public life that the statesman must often resist public clamour and stand impervious to momentary gusts of popular passion and that all enduring achievements must be based in the reason rather than in the emotions of the people.

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An hon. MEMBER.

Louder.

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LIB

Daniel Duncan McKenzie

Liberal

Mr. McKENZIE.

I would expect from the length of the ears of my hon friend that he would hear me.

The disposition to preserve is an essential clement in Sir Wilfrid Laurier's statesmanship as indeed it must be the dominant principle of all successful government in free countries. So in the field of constitutional reform he has striven for amendment within the constitution and has quietly but firmly antagonized all intemperate agitation for radical alteration of the terms of confederation. His is essentially a constructive mind and a serene temperament. He trusts in the future and reverences the past. He will always be slow to lay destructive hands upon hallowed institutions and reluctant to distrust the ancient landmarks. His administration has been eminently constructive and progressive. Ho labours with strenuous hand and abiding faith to unify and consolidate the various elements of the confederation to promote material development and establish national selfconfidence.

All his heart and all his creed and all his hope he puts in his inspiring message to the Acadians of Nova Scotia:

' As long as I live, as long as I have the power to labour in the service of my country, 1 shall repel the idea of changing the nature of its different elements. I want to take ail the elements and build a nation that will be foremost among the great powers of the world.*

That, Sir, is a description of our great leader given by a man who was not partial to him and who has given not an overdrawn picture. We would not be ready to exchange a leader of that kind for another leader of our own party and much less for the leader of a party which is untried and out of power and which must have forgotten the lessons taught by whatever experiences it has had in the past. I have endeavoured to answer the charges that were made against the administration in so far as the small circle of the debate that I have endeavored to compass is concerned. I am satisfied that the country, financially and otherwise, is in a sound condition; I am satisfied that the administration stands to-day as high in the estimation and approval of the people as ever it did, and I am satisfied that the production of the budget and the presentation of accounts by the Minister of Finance lre honest, straightforward and true, and that that hon. gentleman would not bring anything else to the notice of the people of this country. The criticism that

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LIB

Daniel Duncan McKenzie

Liberal

Mr. D. D. McKENZIE.

we have heard about the bookkeeping does not hold good. It is the same bookkeeping as that which prevails in the great institutions of this country. It is not the same kind of bookkeeping that they have in the Canadian Pacific Railway, in the Grand Trunk Pacific, and in every other great institution in this or in neighbouring countries? Is not the cost of great public works charged to capital account? This is a criticism of which we heard nothing during the eighteen years that hon. gentlemen opposite were in power. We heard nothing of it during the twelve years during which the present government have been in power. It is a new criticism. It is a criticism that the people are not concerned about and one which will not alarm them. For these reasons and many others that could be mentioned I support the government as it is to-day handling the affairs of the country, and I support the Minister of Finance in the budget that he has brought before the House and the country.

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CON

George Henry Bradbury

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. G. H. BRADBURY (Selkirk).

Mr. Speaker, I had not intended taking part in this discussion if it had not been for the fact that there has been so much elasticity allowed and so many new elements interjected into the debate. The fact that there have been some statements made by hon. gentlemen which deserve some consideration from some one coming from the province to which I belong is my justification for participating in the debate. Last evening there was a speech delivered by the hon. member for Humboldt (Mr. Neely) who, in his fiery eloquence, seemed, for a moment, to lose control of himself and who used language regarding some of the statesmen in the western country that I think was utterly uncalled for and that, in his sober moments he would not be guilty of. Speaking of the Attorney General of Manitoba he made the statement that that gentleman had prostituted the machinery of justice for the purpose of aiding the election of the representatives that came from that province. There was no statement ever made on the floor of this House more foreign to the real facts than that. There is no question that the Attorney General of Manitoba, knowing something of the record of the Liberal party and of the Liberal machine in that country, did, at the solicitation and request of the candidates, name provincial constables to man the polls and see that the Conservative party had the opportunity of having a fair and honest vote recorded. It became the duty of some of these provincial constables to arrest some of the heelers of the Liberal party, men who were caught red handed in trying to defraud the electors of the province and to deprive them of their votes. The hon. member for Humboldt (Mr. Neely) had a fling at the Attorney Gen-

eral of Manitoba, and on his own ipsi dixit without producing any proof, he stated that the Attorney General had prostituted his office, citing as evidence of that the fact that he been assailed on the streets of Winnipeg by an irresponsible person who might well pray to be saved from his friend. It was unfortunate that the hon. member (Mr. Neely) introduced that person into this discussion, because if there is a man in Manitoba who ought to regret his conduct it is that very man who assailed the Attorney General from behind his back. It was one of the most uncalled foT and cowardly assaults that could be imagined, and the only excuse is that the offender was not responsible for what he was doing. He was brought before the police court and Pushed just as any common criminal would be punished for the oflence. That surely is not a very enviable position for a prominent lawyer in Winnipeg to be placed in, and it would have been much better for him if the hon. member for Humboldt had not dragged the incident into this discus-

The hon. gentleman (Mr. Neely) also stated that the electors of Saskatchewan were given an opportunity to vote as they saw fit and that in that province there were no padded lists such as there were in Manitoba. Mr. Speaker, I take this opportunity of stating that there never has been in the whole history of Manitoba electoral lists as fair as are the present Manitoba lists. The charge that the lists were unfair was made on the floor of this parliament by no less a person than the right hon. the Prime Minister, and it was repeated in the city of Winnipeg by the hon. member for Brandon (Mr. Sifton). The leigslature was sitting at the time and a committee was appointed to inquire into the matter, and although the member for Brandon was subpoened he failed to appear before the committee to substantiate the charge he made in the Winnipeg 'Free Press'. However, the inquiry was held by the committee and it was no doubt attended by the Liberals of the province, and judge after judge was examined and every cne of them testified to the fact that so far as they knew the Manitoba electoral lists were absolutely fair.

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CON

George Henry Bradbury

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. BRADBURY.

Yes, complete charge of the list after they had left the registration clerks. Compare the conditions in Manitoba with the conditions in Saskatchewan, where in Prince Albert two or three men left that city to hold polls in three distinct parts of the province, and only travelled a few miles into a little bluff

where they opened the ballot boxes, made the lists on the ground, manufactured 130 odd votes, and were not even generous enough to record a single vote in favor of the Conservative candidate. These men came back to Prince Albert and their candidate was declared elected. The judges of that province, three new men, one of them Chief Justice Sifton, held that the law was such that they could not take notice of this dastardly act committed by these men, and they confirmed in his seat the Liberal candidate. But the facts were laid before the legislature and the Premier of Saskatchewan and his followers were shamed into declaring that election void and giving the seat to the Conservative candidate who honestly deserved it. Now,

I had the honour of contesting a constituency in Manitoba, and I never during the whole campaign heard my opponent raise any objection to the electoral lists on which he was contesting the election. On one occasion he did say that electors had been left off the lists hy the judges, but this had heen through some clerical error and that was the sum and substance of this grievance. So far as the lists themselves were concerned he was forced to admit, and his supporters in the campaign were forced to admit, that they were absolutely fair in that constituency as they were all over the province. My hon. friend from Humboldt (Mr. Neely) deplored that a man who had not a seat in this House should have been attacked when he had no opportunity to defend himself, but in the same breath he assailed members of the Manitoba government and he charged the Premier of that province with having subsidized a railway into a sand pit for his own benefit. Well, Mr. Speaker, I want to give that statement as flat a denial as the rules of this House will permit, and in justice to the Hon. Mr. Roblin, a man whom we all admire and look upon as the greatest premier Manitoba ever had, I will place his statement on 'Hansard.: We in Manitoba realize that the government that has been given to the province since Mr. Roblin became premier, has been the best government the province of Manitoba has ever enjoyed. This matter came up in the dying days of the recent session of the Manitoba legislature and Mr. Roblin made the following statement as reported in the Winnipeg ' Telegram ' of March 11:

Premier Annihilates so called Sand Charges of the Opposition.

A frank, thorough and convincing explanation of the attack hy the opposition on the Premier's business connections and the guaranteeing of certain lines of the Canadian Northern Railway was made by Hon. R. P. Roblin before the close of the legislature yesterday.

The following is the Premier's statement:

Premier's Statement.

Before the orders of the day are called, I desire on a question of privilege to occupy a few moments of time in which to make a reference or statement regarding a matter which was under discussion yesterday in this House, upon a motion made hy the honourable member for Lansdown (Mr. Norris). I propose to do so for the reason that any one who may have been enough interested in the matter to read anything that has been published concerning it, may have the facts in the case.

When the matter was introduced yesterday f withdrew from the House out of respect to the rule and practice that when any member is directly censured by a resolution for any act of his, he shall withdraw until the matter has been discussed and dealt with. I would have preferred to have remained and made the statement at the time could I have done so without violating the rule to which I have referred. j

History of Case.

In order to give a minute detail of my relation or connection with what is called the 'Eli Sand Company ' and the * Gunn Sand Company,' I shall be compelled to go back to the time when the province took over the Northern Pacific and in turn leased it to the Canadian Northern. Among the other things that were taken over as assets and properties under the lease was found a ballast pit at Eli, and a short branch thereto, located some mile and a half north of the main line, about thirty-five miles west of Winnipeg. No bonds were guaranteed on this line then or any time since.

The Canadian Northern found that the roadbed required ballast in order to keep it up to an efficient state and they undertook to secure from the Eli ballast pit the material for such work. They only operated for a short time until all the ballast that was fit for a roadbed was exhausted. The pit worked out into pure sand.

They then abandoned the pit as a source of supply for railway purposes and immediately began searching for another pit. They finally located one and bought it, at Birds Hill, which they are now using. They secured a charter from the legislature to build a line out in that district several miles beyond what is now their gravel pit. They completed the line to the pit; they partially constructed, I understand, several miles beyond, known as the Dundee line.

Necessary to Construct Line.

It was absolutely necessary in the public interest in order that they might have ballast to keep their roadbed in shape to handle passenger and freight trains that they have this pit. They came to the government and 6aia that in view of our blanket mortgage they were compelled to ask us to guarantee the bonds that they might raise the money for the construction of that line.

Delegations had waited on the government from that district-that is, the district farther out than the gravel pit-for this extension. Knowing that it wae necessary for them to have the ballast and that it was in the interest of the public for them to use it, the government guaranteed their bonds for $10,000 1 Mr. BRADBURY.

a mile. They have operated it continuously ever since as a ballast pit, having taken out thousands upon thousands of carloads of material for their yards in Winnipeg and for ballasting the line between here and Emerson, between here and Portage la Prairie, and between here and Carman.

Business Proposition.

I will now go back to the time when the Canadian Northern abandoned the Eli ballast pit, to show where the Eli Sand Company began. When the ballast was exhausted by striking pure sand, this fact came to the knowledge of myself and some other gentlemen, and as building sand was in good demand in the city, we thought it a good business proposition to secure the pit and bring the sand to Winnipeg for sale.

. ^he land in question was owned by a private individual. I bought the land myself in trust for the other gentlemen and myself and held it until we had exhausted the sand in the pit, when the land was sold for the benefit of the parties who were originally interested. There was no written agreement between the gentlemen and myself but simply our verbal understanding of the operation.

Initial Point.

This statement gives you the initial point of the starting of the Eli Sand Company. While we were operating the Eli sand pit representations came to us from all over the province for the extension of the Canadian Northern system, as was our announced policy. You will remember that this was about 1903. Among the many who came to solicit the influence of the government were several large delegations from Gimii, and Icelandic River districts, from Stonewall town and from the country east and north of Shoal lake. So strongly did they press, headed by the members for Gimii and Rockwood, for an extension that the matter was taken up with the railway company. The company said that they would consider an extension from the point on the old Hudson Bay line in a northeasterly direction; but they would not go to Stonewall, and they further wanted the government to give an assurance that no other company would ^extend lines in that northern country, especially from Teulon north as well as from Winnipeg Beach north.

Of course, the government could give no such assurance; but we assured them that if they would construct we would guarantee their bonds and they could build out a reasonable distance that year and the local business would justify the extension even though the Canadian Pacific did extend their lines.

Agreed to Certain Distance.

They agreed to do thi9 for a certain distance. When it became known that this line was probable, a gentleman who owned 240 acres of land along the projected line, and which was said to be a gravel, ballast, sand pit, met those who were associated in the Eli Company and asked if it were not possible to arrange a company to handle the material at that point. The result was a company was formed. I had a small interest in that company. I have it yet. The company owns the land at that place.

There was some sand and ballast taken out from that particular pit, but not in any great quantities. As it developed, there was no quantity there for commercial purposes.

Pressed for Extension.

The government guaranteed those .bonds on that line and have been pressing the railway company for an extension ever since, supported and backed by the people who live in that district. Only a few days ago a large deputation, headed by the member for Rock-wood, waited upon the government and presented a petition, signed by nearly five hundred names of residents from the present end of the track, praying for an extension. The matter is now still being considered by the company and I hope to succeed in getting the extension.

The line that is built handles freight only in carloads, is a great convenience to the people and absolutely satisfactory to the district.

Birds Hill Line.

I now come to deal with the sand shipped from Birds Hill-not the company which was incorporated to operate out on the Hudson Bay line. They had no pits with which to operate and in the location of the Birds Hill ballast pit it was discovered that there was a large deposit of sand, convenient to the line that ran to the ballast pit. Arrangements were made by which the company agreed to haul the sand that we might load to Winnipeg at the ordinary rates or charges for such service.

I was one of the gentlemen interested in the handling of sand from Birds Hill to Winnipeg until the end of the year 1907. I then withdraw, for the reason that I refused or declined to make any financial arrangements in order that the business might be continued ; and the remaining gentlemen who were interested, so far as I know, have continued the business down to the present.

Tariff an Ottawa Matter.

I further wish to state for the information of the House and the country that the tariff of charges are the regular ones, and are filed at Ottawa with the Railway Commission of Canada, open to the inspection of all who desire to examine them.

I have stated the facts exactly as they are and I am satisfied to leave the matter with the House and with the people of this country. I cannot hope to satisfy any one who wishes to make political or party capital out of the fact that I have used the Canadian Northern Railway as a transportation line for handling articles of trade that I was properly engaged in. Neither can I hope to satisfy the individual who will claim that I have no right, being a minister of the Crown, to engage in commercial pursuits.

. Right to Trade. _

1 do not believe, however, that any good citizen will deny me the right to trade and conduct a commercial business where I receive no favours from any one in so far as the transportation of my commodities, whatever they may be, is concerned, over a line of railway that has been projected and aided in the public interest.

I submit this statement of facts as a full and complete justification for the course that

I have taken, and therefore a complete and absolute answer to the criticisms that have been made upon my business relations in this connection, and repeat my regrets that the rule and practice of the House prevented me from being present when the matter was up for discussion.

I am handing this statement to each of the three papers, published in the city, for publication.

I do not think it is necessary for me to say a word more in this connection. The premier of Manitoba has been assailed in this House in a manner very ill-becoming a gentleman having a seat in this parliament, and especially a young man coming from the sister province. The only ground he had was dame rumour, and while he was so glib in criticising the action of another member for daring to allude to a gentleman who had not a seat in this House and consequently could not defend himself, it ill-became him to take advantage of his position to assail those who are not members of this House and consequently have not the opportunity to defend themselves.

I want to deal for a short time with another question, one of great importance to Manitoba, and that is the land question.

I was rather amused when I heard the Minister of Finance, a few days ago, make the statement, in his speech on the budget, that the Liberal party stood for the policy of the land for the settler and not for the speculator. That statement was endorsed by the hon. the ex-Speaker (Mr. Sutherland). But what are the facts? These hon. gentlemen surely do not imagine that the country forgets some of the notorious land deals which have taken place under this government. Take for instance one of the first which occurred after this government came to power. They had been very glib all over the country, from the Atlantic to the Pacific, impressing upon the people that not one acre was given by them to a railway company, while the Conservative party had given away millions of acres for the construction of railways, but the Liberal party had secured railway construction without giving a subsidy of one acre. But what are the facts? In 1882 there was a charter granted for the Hudson Bay Railway. That charter carried a grant of 640 acres per mile, for the mileage in Manitoba, and 12,800 per mile for the mileage outside that province. When these gentlemen came into power that charter was in existence but had not been acted on and was dying a natural death; and if they had been sincere in their pledges, they would not have given one acre of land to that company and would have refused to extend the life of its charter. But they gave an extension of the charter on three or four different occasions, thus securing that land grant to the Canadian Northern, and they allowed the Canadian Northern to absorb the Hudson Bay Railway grant. That com-

pany built about 320 miles of railway in an almost opposite direction from that defined in the charter, and this government allowed the Canadian Northern to get for the road they had already built out towards the Dauphin country 6,400 acres per mile; and when they went west from Irwin to The Pas and built 97 miles of railway, they got about

1,200,000 acres of picked land out of the Saskatchewan district for the construction of that road.

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LIB

John Patrick Molloy

Liberal

Mr. MOLLOY.

Was the land granted by the preceding government or hy this government? Or did this government carry out the contract made by its predecessors in office.

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CON

George Henry Bradbury

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. BRADBURY.

The land grant was voted for the Hudson Bay Railway in 1882. I do not think that hon. gentlemen opposite were in office then. But the Hudson Bay Railway Company did not take advantage of that land grant. The charter practically died on three or four different occasions, or would have died if it had not been renewed by hon. gentlemen opposite. Consequently they aTe directly responsible for the fact that that land, which was granted the Hudson Bay Railway Company, was absorbed by the Canadian Northern for the extension of their line in a direction different altogether from what was at first intended. Another feature was this. The Canadian Northern secured 12,800 acres per mile as soon as they left Manitoba. They huilt about 97 miles outside of that province, from Irwin to The Pas, and secured something like 1,241,600 acres of picked land in the Saskatchewan valley. If that land is worth what the people of the west say it is, about $6 an acre, we find that the Canadian Northern secured for that 97 miles over $7,000,000 worth of land, and they secured that from those gentlemen who claim that they are holding the lands for the settler and not for the speculators.

There is another notorious deal on which I wish to touch on for a moment or two. I refer to the Saskatchewan land deal. My hon. friend from Humboldt (Mr. Neely) dealt with that question last night in a very laboured manner, and in a way which showed either that he did not understand the subject or that he was not altogether frank with this House. The facts were simply these. This government allowed a few political friends to secure 250,000 acres of picked land in the Saskatchewan valley for $1 an acre. They had the privilege of nicking these lands out of nearly a million acres, and within a very short time these gentlemen sold that land at from $6 to $10 an acre and pocketed about $1,760,000, which should have gone to the settlers. A gentleman who had the honour of occupying a seat on the government side of the House was one of those who secured that land at a dollar an acre and who shared in that enormous profit. And still we are told that the right hon.

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CON

George Henry Bradbury

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. BRADBURY.

gentleman who leads the House and his government have been conserving the lands of the. west for the settlers and not for the speculators. We remember the many land scandals ventilated in this House last session; we remember the grazing leases, covering some 372,000 acres of land alienated from the Crown for a period of twenty-one years with the right of purchase at about one-tenth of $1 an acre. This is the way these gentlemen have been conserving the land for the settler.

Another matter has been dinned into our ears every time an hon. member rose in his place on the other side to address the House on the land question. We have been told that the Conservative party gave to the Canadian Pacific Railway Company 25,000,000 acres of land that we practically gave the whole Northwest away for the construction of the Canadian Pacific Railway. When the contract for that railway was under discussion in this House, we did not find the leader of the opposition, the present leader of the government (Sir Wilfrid Laurier) and the men who sat around him giving to the government of that day any support in the carrying out of this great undertaking. They come before us to-day and tell us what they have done for the west. But, Sir, we who knew of the events of that time remember that the Canadian Pacific Railway was built in the face of the most unscrupulous opposition ever offered to any public undertaking, and that opposition came from men who occupy the treasury benches to-day. When this land grant was given to the Canadian Pacific Railway, what was land in the Northwest worth? I remember that when I went to that country myself in 1881 I went by way of the United States. Stopping off at St. Paul, I saw bills as large as the picture of her Majesty the Queen that hangs in this chamber posted up in the St. Paul station, giving the speeches of Sir Richard Cartwright and other leaders of the Liberal party on the subject of the Canadian Northwest. Immigrants who were going through were taken by the American officials and shown the opinions expressed by these men of our great west. 'There,' they said, 'you can see that these men say that this country to which you are going is only fit for Indians and buffalo.' And in this way they induced these people to settle in North Dakota or South Dakota. To-day, these speakers on behalf of the Liberal party hlame the Conservatives for aiding the construction of the Canadian Pacific with this grant of land. But what is the history of the Liberal party in relation to the land grant for that road? On the defeat of the Conservative party in 1873, Hon. Alexander Mackenzie came into office. He and Hon. Edward Blake, one of the greatest Liberals, I suppose, this country has ever produced, but he had no faith in the

great west, had no faith in the construction of the Canadian Pacific Railway. But I suppose they felt they were forced to go a certain distance in that direction on account of the compact entered into by Sir Jchn A. Macdonald in bringing into confederation the province of British Columbia. Their scheme was not to construct the Canadian Pacific Railway as we have it to-day ; they started off with the idea that they would build from the head of Thunder Bay westward. I have here the statutes, and they show that Mr. Mackenzie and his government at that time provided that the road should be built in four sections, and that 20,000 acres of land and $10,000 in cash per mile should be given toward it. This applied to every branch line as well as to the main line. When you figure it out you learn the startling fact-which our Liberal friends do not know or they would not be so prone to throw this land grant into the teeth of the Conservative party-that the Liberals of that day were willing to give, not 25,000,000 acres of land, but 50,000,000 acres and $25,000,000 in cash for the construction of the Toad. There is no one who has lived in the western country for a number of years and seen the steady progress made there that ever thinks of blaming the Conservative party for building that road under the conditions accepted at that time. What would the great west be to-day if the Canadian Pacific Railway had not been constructed? Where would the hon. member for Humboldt (Mr. Neely) be? He would not be living in Humboldt, And my hon. friend from Red Deer (Mr. Michael Clark) would not be here to-day. That hon. gentleman has only been in this country seven years, yet he lectures this House on the policy we are following in this country, and though he does not come out squarely as a free trader, gives us a speech along those lines. I do not intend to refer particularly to what the hon. gentleman has said, but I may say that he is in very bad company for a free trader when he supports the right hon. Prime Minister (Sir Wilfrid Laurier) and his ministers. We have to-day the national policy as firmly as it ever was fixed in this country, and we are thankful to know that the Liberal party, when they came into power in 1896, had not the courage of their convictions and dared not put in practice the policy that they had enunciated all over this country for eighteen years. And that very fact largely accounts for the great prosperity Canada has enjoyed during the last ten or twelve years of the regime of these hon. gentlemen. .

Now, I wish to refer to a matter in which I am directly interested in connection with this land question. While listening to the speeches of hon. gentlemen claiming that they believed in a policy that keeps the land for the settler and not for

the speculator, I was forced to recognize the fact that they preach one doctrine in this House and practice something altogether different in the western country. About a year ago we had, adianent to my own town, an Indian reservation. This covered about 50,000 acres of tile best available lands in the province of Manitoba. There was supposed to be an agitation for the surrender of that reserve and the removal of the Indians, but just where that agitation came from I have failed to find out. I have lived in the town of Selkirk off and on, for the last twenty-eight years, and there has been no agitation along these lines there. But something had to be done for the boys and the government had to give them a chance to get in on a land deal. So the surrender of that great reserve was decided upon, and a commission was sent down to Selkirk to arrange that surrender. The present Chief Justice Howell, of the city of Winnipeg came down to Selkirk to arrange with the chief and council. When they came there the chief and council would have nothing to do with them, refused to meet them, or to discuss the surrender of the reserve. But these men were determined that the reserve should be surrendered and thrown open, that a few of their friends might reap the benefit. So an arrangement was made by two or three citizens of the town who were approached, and the Indian chief and council were got together. There was some deal arranged with the chief and council to this effect: These men were to be bribed, were to be bought, to betray the rest of their band, and they were promised five times as much land as the ordinary Indian got as an inducement to secure the consent of the band to a surrender. I am told on good authority-I do not make the statement because I have not got the proof-I am told, however, on the best authoiity that the Indian chief and council were promised $200 cash in addition, 5 times as much land as the other members of the band were to get, for inducing the rest of the band to agree to this surrender. Now what occurred ? These men agreed that every soul, every man, woman and child on that reserve, should receive 16 acres of land ; this, Mr. Speaker, was given as an inducement to these men to agree to surrender. In all, it amounted to something like 25,000 acres of land. This was the first experience these Indians ever had in possessing anything that they could transfer or sell. They were always regarded as incompetent, and I confess I thought mvself that they were incompetent to hold land or transfer it. But the parties who were arranging this deal no doubt had this matter all studied out before the arrangement was made.

Now then, these men suddenly found themselves possessed of 16 acres of choice

land in this settlement and they were immediately besieged by a few men who wanted to pick up those allotments. Last session, I think it was, a question was asked on the floor of the House whether any protection could be given to a purchaser from the Indians of one of these 16-acre lots, and the answer given by the Minister of the Interior was, if I remember right that the Indians had nothing to sell until the patent issued, and that the Interior Department would not protect anybody who purchased this land. Now, Sir, the ordinary man on the street tools it for granted that this land could not be placed on the market until these patents were issued. But there were a few political friends who were on the inside. There was one gentleman who made a trip to the city of Ottawa and got thoroughly posted, and he came back and started in to buy. He and his friends got from the Indians some kind of a quit claim deed, I do not know exactly what it was, but they got something anyway that held, and they bought these lands from these Indians at the very best bargain could they make. Now, every one in this House knows how incompetent the Indian is, how improvident he is, how little able he is to protect himself against a keen speculator. The government, I understand, had supplied the Indians with a solicitor to look after their interests in the surrender; and they had an Indian agent there who was supposed to protect the rights of the wards of the government; but the result has been that both the solicitor and the Indian agent worked hand in hand with the speculator, and the Indian was practically beat out of his land. That land which was worth $15 or $20 an acre, fell into the hands of a few of these men at a figure averaging something like $3 per acre. ,

Mr. Speaker, it is very difficult for me to make this transaction as plain to the House as I would like. But if you can imagine 25,000 acres of land divided up into 16-acre lots; no man knew where his lot was going to be situated. They formed what they called the Northern Land Company, every one of them being political friends of the government. I venture to say from my place in this House that there was not 100 acres out of that 25,000 acres of land that passed into the hands of a Conservative. There was not a Conservative in the town of Selkirk dared to invest $1, because he had no protection. He felt that he was at the mercy of the Indian agent and of the Indian Department; there was no guarantee that he could get his patent, or that he would be protected. It was arranged in such a way that no man but Liberals could buy these lands, and Liberals did buy them. Now what happened with the balance of this land? There was something Mr. BRADBURY.

like 25,000 acres of land left after these men had picked this 25,000 out of the 50,000, because when they had the right to locate this land they haa tne right to pick. They went round and located this land in blocks, in some places of 100, or

1,000 acres, just as they could manage to buy it. The balance of this 25,000 acres was put up to auction, and some of the men who secured this picked land for about $3 an acre, when they were bidding against each other for the remnants of that reserve, much of it very inferior land in comparison to what they had bought for $3 an acre, they had to pay three times as much at auction as they had paid for the picked land on that reserve which he had bought from the poor unprotected Indian. Now, this will give you some idea of the seriousness of the hon. gentlemen apposite when they proclaim the doctrine of the land for the setters and not for the speculators. Every acre of that land has fallen into the hands of speculators.

Now, Mr. Speaker, I want to point out to the Minister of the Interior, whom I see in his seat, what might have been dene with that land. We have on the shores of Lake Winnipeg, west of the lake and north of Teulon, 3,000 or 4,000 settlers, Ruthenians, Polanders and Germans, as fine a people as ever went into that province. This government placed these men on lands utterly unfit for human beings to live on. In the spring of the year they have to wade in water up to their waists to get out to a settlement. Last year the local government undertook to drain some of that district, and spent a sum of money to help them, for all of which they received, not the thanks of the Liberal party or press of Manitoba, but the severest and most unfair criticism for that expenditure. If the Minister of the Interior and the government had been anxious to secure the land for the settlers, they could have taken that 50,000 acres of the finest land in the province, surveyed it into 100 acre lots, and sold it on 25 or 30 years purchase to these people, and we would have had one of the finest settlements in the province of Manitoba at Selkirk, and the land would have passed into the hands of settlers and not into the hands of speculators. But that is not the policy of the present government. The Liberal party or the Liberal heelers of that district, because, unfortunately, we have a number of them around Selkirk, would have had no opportunity of making the rake-off they have made out of that land. You cannot buy an acre of the land of St. Peter's reserve which was bought for $3 last year at less than $10 to $20 from the men who hold it at the present time. I intend placing on record a letter which I have from an Indian chief. This may be the last opportunity I will have, and I want the

House to become aware of just how the Indians feel about this matter. I know that the Indians have complained bitterly to the minister and the Indian Department about the treatment they have received. They are the wards of the government. We, who have gone into that country and have had occasion to mix with that class of people, know that these Indians had one of the finest reserves in the province and they deserved better treatment than they have received. The letter is as follows:

Selkirk, February 25, 1909.

G. H. Bradbury, M.P.,

Ottawa.

Dear sir,-We. the chief and council of the St. Peter's band, beg leave to make a statement how we were used in regard to the sale of our lands.

The government had given these Indians a new reserve on Lake Winnipeg and they had been out apparently visiting this reserve.

After coming back from the lake, Mr. E. Rayner came to the chief councillors and asked U9 to give him part of our land for security and so he would help us through till the patents came. He asked us, how much we would want per acre. I told him not less than $15 an acre. So he said all right, and when the patents came he would complete the bargain. So we went on getting the goods from the store until we received a letter from Frank Pedley saying that the Indian Department would not recognize any bargain made by the white people. Then Mr. Rayner said to us that he would not give us anything more until our patents came; so we did not get anything after that. On the

The date is left out, but I think it is on the 26th October.

-Mr. William Frank came to Selkirk and wished to meet the chief and council. So we e*me up to Selkirk, met Mr. Frank and he told us that he wanted to buy lands from the Indians. The chief and the rest of the councillors did not say anything to him. I spoke to him and asked him what authority he had to buy land or who permitted him, for the Indian Department had sent a letter to us iby Frank Pedley saying that he would not recognize any bargain made by a man for buying land. He said that he would buy anyway and take the risk.

It was not much of a risk in this case.

The rest of the chief and council were against me saying this to Mr. Frank. But, he went on buying land and he asked us to be at Selkirk while buying from the Indians, to be witness to this bargain or deeds, he, riomisintr to help us as much as he could. Afterwards he promised to give us $2 per day. So it went on in this way. We helped him as much as we could and about the month of duly, 1908. he told us that he would take all the lands that we had given to Mr. Rayner and would pay what he had given us. He said that he would not pay us $2 per day, but that he would search the best land near Selkirk,

that would be worth $25 per acre, and that we would get all we needed. He said: I will hire two rigs from Mr. George Eickenson's livery stables and will drive around to search for the good land. We drove around west from Selkirk and not very far from the asylum he took locations for the chief, and councillors Williams and Harper, and none for W. H. Prince, councillor, but he said that he would look for land for me at East Selkirk. So he did start next day and we found good land at East Selkirk. He located there for $25 per acre and then he asked me if I could wirk for him while he was at Selkirk, promising that he would give me $50 per month. 1 consented and I went on working for him. He paid me all right for two months and after that he did not give me anything, but still I was working for him. And he did not give us much money, he got rather awkward himself to us, so we talked to him one day that he ought to treat us Wetter, because we want to live. We don't want to work for nothing. Then he got rather mad, so he said to us, the chief and councillors, he got mad with me and said to me: ' Be careful what you say to me or else I will take off your coat of office as chief and councillor, for you are drinking.' Then I said to him: 'Who learnt us to drink? for you gave drink sometimes in the morning.' He did not say anything more. We after that, asked him to make a proper settlement about our land he took but as he would say that he would treat us right, not to be afraid of him, he went on like that all along till this month, February, I asked him to settle with me for my land. Before Councillor Williams, he said to me 'I overpaid you; there is nothing coming to you.' I asked him how that could be. He said ' I am only allowing you $6 per acre for your land. I said to him * I am not such a fool to give you my land for $6 per acre when I can easily get $15 per acre.' And I said to him ' I will try and do something to make you pay what you promised for my land.' He promised to give the chief and councillors if they would help him to the end buying land $100 each as present and promised to give $25 per acre for all the land we, the chief and councillors, received in settlement, but after securing our land and patents only allowed us $6 per acre. This is the way the speculators are aided and allowed to rob the poor Indian.

Topic:   WAYS AND MEANS-THE BUDGET.
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WILLIAM PRINCE,


Chief.


W. H. PRINCE, JAS. WILLIAMS,


Councillors. This gives you an idea of how these speculators have handled the Indians and how little the government have interfered to protect them. The point I want to make is that these Indians were the wards of the government, that it was the duty of the Indian agent to see that these men got justice instead of which the Indian agent and the solicitor who was appointed and paid by this government to take care of the interests of these Indians were in collusion with the speculators, and the Indians in that case were beaten out of their just rights. Now, I have taken up all the time



I intend to in this debate. I just want to say that I do not honestly think that the government have any right to claim that they have in any way preserved the lands of the Northwest for the settler. In every case where there was an opportunity to hand the land out to their friends and to speculators it has been done. When we look at the manner in which they have dealt with our great fishing interests in that country, when we think of these great fishing rights that they gave to two or three men, when we remember that a lawyer in Montreal secured Athabaska lake, or 10,700 square miles of water teeming with beautiful fish and the whole of the Nelson river down to Hudson bay for $10, when we remember the McNee lease which gave that gentleman nearly 300 square miles of James bay for $10 a year, and when we remember the Mackenzie lease which handed over Lesser Slave lake for $10 a year we can easily see that these gentlemen have not been guided by a desire to protect the settlers in any one case. I congratulate the hon. Minister of Marine and Fisheries (Mr. Brodeur) for having had the courage, in face of the opposition and political influence that was brought to bear, to cancel these leases. I believe that he is being pressed at the present time for a lease of Lac du Bonnet, and if he yields he will put himself in the same position that his predecessor was in when he granted the leases that I have been referring to.


LIB

John Patrick Molloy

Liberal

Mr. JOHN PATRICK MOLLOY (Pro-vencher).

Mr. Speaker, I would not have taken part in this debate were it not that certain statements have been made by hon. gentlemen opposite regarding events in the province of Manitoba which I think it my duty to correct. I have the greatest respect for the hon. gentlemen on the Conservative benches who come from the province of Manitoba, and I think that we Manitobans should all have a friendly feeling for each other, but, when Conservative members from the province of Manitoba make statements which are not founded on fact I will have to be excused if I express my dissent. The hon. member for Lisgar (Mr. Sharpe) stated, evidently without any knowledge whatever on his part, that he had come to the conclusion that the Minister of Finance was a great joker, and I might return that compliment by saying that in my opinion the hon. gentleman (Mr. Sharpe) is the greatest joker who has yet spoken in this debate. Among other things he talked about Bill Miner. Do you know Mr. Speaker, what I think of Bill Miner and the Conservative party: I believe that the Conservatives are jealous of Bill Miner because while Bill Miner got into a hole he got out of it, and the Conservative party have got into a hole from which they are not able to extricate themselves. In my opinion Bill Mr. MOLLOY. .

Miner is a cleverer man than all the Conservative party put together. We were given to understand that the hon. member for New Westminster (Mr. Taylor) was going to make a charge in regard to the escape of Bill Miner, but he failed to do so up to the present because perhaps he knows that some people who have been making charges in connection with the escape of Bill Miner are in an unenviable position. Take the case of ex-Warden Bourke who was brought into the courts of the country and who had to make an apology and undertake to pay the costs in connection with the suit. The gentleman who compelled ex-Warden Bourke to make that apology and pay the costs also brought a case against the paper owned by the hon. member for New Westminster.

Topic:   WAYS AND MEANS-THE BUDGET.
Subtopic:   W. H. PRINCE, JAS. WILLIAMS,
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April 27, 1909