Hon. R. R. DOBELL (Quebec West).
I thought we had pretty well threshed out this question when the subject of transpor-: tation was up before the House some time ago, but I must crave the indulgence of the House if I rise to reply to some remarks of the hon. gentleman who has just spoken (Mr. Gallery) and of the hon. member for the St. Lawrence division of Montreal (Mr. Roddick). The hon. gentleman who last spoke said that the government had not done anything for the port of Montreal. I was carried back a period of nearly thirty years, when the same 'question was debated
pretty warmly, not in this House, but in the Dominion Board of Trade. Among those who were present at that meeting were Hon. John Young, Hon. Thomas White, Hugh McLennan, and Mr. Cramp. I do not think that at that time you could find four abler or better representatives of the city of Montreal. These gentlemen took part in a discussion with the members from Quebec and Kingston. A resolution was moved on behalf of Quebec, which I would like to read, for it is very short, and because I happened to be there and to move this resolution. I considered at that time that it was quite worthy of consideration, and I believe that it is as worthy of consideration by this House to-day before we continue the very extravagant and costly work of deepening and widening Lake St. Peter. The resolution reads as follows :
That this board would urge the government to lose no time in carrying out the improving of the highway from the west to the ocean ; and that it is also desirable, before it is committed to any scheme for deepening Lake St. Peter, to consider whether the harbour of Quebec could not be utilized and made capable, at a comparatively small outlay, to accommodate and tranship the commodities from Europe to our western towns, and also the grain and produce of our western towns, to Europe, and also the grain and produce of the west to Europe, at a less cost and with greater economy ihan by an extensive and costly work, such as deepening Lake St. Peter.
A statement was made at that time which I think this House might well consider today. Wheat can be carried from the west to Quebec for 1 cent per bushel more than to Montreal and from Quebec to Europe for 3 cents per bushel less than from Montreal to Europe. Thus there is a saving on shipments by Quebec of 2 cents per bushel. Now, Mr. McLennan is reported as having made this very emphatic statement. He
-begged leave to correct the gentlemen from Quebec and Hamilton; he (Mr. McLennan) had already stated on this floor that Montreal did not now desire to have any public money spent for the purpose of deepening Lake St. Peter.
He was followed by Hon. John Young in a similar strain and also by Hon. Thomas White, of whom it is reported :
He discountenanced the idea of asking the government to deepen the channel through Lake St. Peter, and said if the government would grant them the power, the people of Montreal would do It themselves.
Topic: SUPPLY-THE TRANSPORTATION QUESTION.