July 28, 1903 (9th Parliament, 3rd Session)


Ernest D'Israeli Smith

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. SMITH (Wentworth).

I will conclude with a motion. I gather from the public press that these gentlemen are to go through the country as freely as a good many previous bodies of men of less importance going straight through to the west. Now, we are all extremely solicitous for the welfare of the west, and proud of it, and glad to do anything that can possibly be done to advertise the west and bring it to the attention of the people of the old world. But it seems to me that while we are not paying too much attention to the west, we are paying too little attention to the east. While Ontario and the other eastern provinces are being drained of their best iblood to fill up the west, which we are very glad to do, we want some steps taken to fill their places to as large a degree as possible with a good class of immigrants from other countries, especially fj-om the British Isles. If these gentlemen were taken through the western part of Ontario as far as Windsor, they would see a strip of territory quite unexcelled by any other in the world for agricultural pur-

poses, and they would see happy and comfortable homes and a thrifty people. Then, if they were to go through the county of Essex and see the great crops of corn, oats, tobacco and fruit grown in that county ; and if they were brought back by another route to the Niagara district, winding up in what is known as the garden of Canada, passing through those magnificent orchards, and getting a feast of the luscious peaches grown there, they would carry back to the old country a better idea of the climate of this country possibly than they had before. We have in the past been considerably damaged by the descriptions of Canada as a land of snow for six months in the year, and a land where wheat grows during the other six months. But I am satisfied that a very large proportion of the people of Great Britain are not cognizant of the fact that this country possesses large areas of land capable of yielding the best semitropical fruit, such as peaches and grapes ; and if they were taken through the country where they could see with their own eyes these fruits growing in profusion, it would be of infinite advantage to this country. We must have, it seems to me, a great deal more energy devoted in that direction. Then when they go through the Niagara district, let them see Niagara falls, not only one of the wonders of the world in itself, bit the scene of great enterprise at the present time, no less than half a million horsepower of energy being developed there. I am sure that these gentlemen would be delighted to see such an enormous undertaking as is being carried on at. Niagara falls at the present time. I move that the House do now adjourn.

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