I hold in my hand a petition-signed by 24 Liberals who get their mail matter at the village of Wilton ; men who are respectable, reliable and well-to-do, and who have much more to do with the post office than any other set of men in that locality. This is the petition :
Wilton, June 11th. Hon. Sir William Mulock,
Dear sir,-We, the undersigned mail receivers of the Wilton post office locality, beg leave by this petition to say that we are satisfied with the present postmaster and also satisfied with the place where it is kept, the place being most convenient to the general public, and we sincerely hope there will be no action taken to please a few who are either jealous or maliciously inclined to injure him. The moving of the post office would, we are inclined to think, injure our political strength.
We pray that you may give it your careful consideration and undoubtedly our sincere request will be granted. We remain, supporters of the present government.
That is signed by twenty-four leading Liberals who reside in that locality and who have principle enough, or shall I say common sense enough, to rise above party feeling, and to say that they would not do an injustice to a good and efficient officer. I have a letter here from Mr. Gallagher which sets out the whole case in pretty strong and plain language, and I shall read it to the House. When the return was brought down I sent It to Mr. Gallagher for the purpose of getting an explanation of the charges made against him and on May 2, 1904, he wrote as follows :
Wilton, Ont., May 2nd, 1904. Uriah Wilson, Esq., M.P.
My dear sir,-Your letter to hand containing complaints about me as postmaster, and X will answer them in rotation, and attach slip to each one that you may more definitely understand It. All are true ; they are a hard gang -not one of the crowd attends church, and there is out of the eight, I may say, 1 never saw more than three of them inside a church, unless for some special occasion, and of the eight, seven drink whisky, seven use tobacco, one in the poor-house now, four combined not worth |200, altogether that is $50 each, one with suspended sentence of theft hanging over him. It is of no use to say more, they are simply a gang. The Postmaster General got letters from Rev. Dr. D. C. Day, Methodist minister here for four years now in June ; from Robert Miller, a man worth $40,000, a justice of the peace and commissioner, and issuer of marriage licenses, and ex-reeve of Ernestown by acclamation ; Wellington Babcock, a well-to-do farmer, and ex-reeve, and a member of the township council for, I think, six years ; James Lewis, J.P., and a resident for sixty years, and one of the real hard workers for the party ; Ross Peters, owner of
200 acres of land, and a resident of the place for thirty-seven years ; Thomas Prest, owner of 150 acres of land, and a man about 55 to 60 years of age, one of Ernestown's hardest workers for their party ; H. Walker, aged 62 years, always a Reformer and always lived here, and worth ahout $5,000 to $8,000. I will put their names below and their worth-that is the six men that wrote the Postmaster General. They marked their letters private, and I saw the answers, but this was done to keep peace with the gang, and I kept it from the crowd algo : Name. Worth.
Subtopic: THOMAS PREST.