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Old Province of Quebec

Old Province of Quebec

ALFRED LEROY BURT
Copyright Date: 1933
Edition: NED - New edition
Pages: 576
https://www.jstor.org/stable/10.5749/j.cttttzrr
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  • Book Info
    Old Province of Quebec
    Book Description:

    The definitive study of the political, social, economic, legal, military, and administrative aspects of Canadian history from 1760 to 1790.

    eISBN: 978-1-4529-3711-3
    Subjects: History

Table of Contents

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  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-viii)
  2. [Illustrations]
    (pp. None)
  3. Table of Contents
    (pp. ix-xvi)
  4. CHAPTER I THE COLONY SURRENDERED
    (pp. 1-12)

    THE Canada that Governor Vaudreuil surrendered to the British commander-in-chief on September 8, 1760, was as large in territory as it was small in population. It extended down the Ohio, it included the Great Lakes, and no one knew how far it reached toward the setting sun. Most of this country land was still as wild as it was on the day two centuries earlier when Jacques Cartier first sailed from St. Malo to discover the land that was to be New France. To gather furs and to block the English, the French had flung their posts far and wide....

  5. CHAPTER II THE FIRST WINTER OF THE BRITISH IN CANADA
    (pp. 13-25)

    THE military heel has ground out groans from conquered people in many lands. But the rule of the soldier, though proverbially heavy, was particularly light in Canada during the first few years of British rule. These years are known as the military régime or therègne militaire. Until permanently ceded by treaty, Canada was only a temporary possession of uncertain future and, in accordance with the customs of war, was occupied and administered by the victorious army. But the Peace of Paris, which was signed on February 10, 1763, did not terminate this régime at once. It had to be...

  6. CHAPTER III THE CANADIANS UNDER MILITARY RULE
    (pp. 26-56)

    WHEN Amherst became master of the whole country on September 8, 1760, he faced the problem of how to hold it securely. The first essential was a garrison. In arranging this he apparently sought to interfere as little as possible with the existing organization of the troops. Most of the line regiments that he had led into the colony he stationed in or around Montreal, while to Quebec he allotted all of Murray’s units except two, one of which he detached to occupy Three Rivers.¹ It will be observed that this garrison comprised only regulars. All the provincials he sent...

  7. CHAPTER IV PEACE AND WAR
    (pp. 57-73)

    THE fall of New France was only one event in a war that was waged in four continents and on “the seven seas,” and in this titanic struggle both Britain and France were linked with important allies. The peace settlement was, therefore, a highly complicated business. Here, however, it is necessary to examine the Treaty of Paris only as it affected the fate of Canada.

    Britain could not hope to retain all that she had conquered from France. Britain was too weak and France was too strong. On both sides of the Channel tongues and pens joined in high debate...

  8. CHAPTER V THE ESTABLISHMENT OF CIVIL GOVERNMENT
    (pp. 74-101)

    THE cession of Canada created one of the greatest problems in the history of the British Empire. Hitherto the empire had grown chiefly by peaceful expansion and settlement, and had remained substantially English and Protestant. Then, by conquest, it acquired a large territory where a people neither English nor Protestant had already established themselves firmly. How was this new and strange block to be fitted into the imperial structure?

    Except that they lived in America, the Canadians bore no resemblance to the inhabitants of the other British colonies, and they had nothing in common with the people of Britain except...

  9. CHAPTER VI THE TRIBULATIONS OF GOVERNOR MURRAY
    (pp. 102-127)

    THE history of Murray’s civil administration of the province of Quebec is the story of a man overwhelmed by a sea of troubles. Probably no British governor has ever been thrust into a more impossible position than that in which he found himself. Being forced to oppress a people whom he admired and pitied was only one part of his embarrassment. He was involved in a most confused and exasperating three-cornered quarrel with the garrison of the colony and with the little community of English-speaking merchants who had come to seek their fortunes on the shores of the St. Lawrence....

  10. [Illustrations]
    (pp. None)
  11. CHAPTER VII GUY CARLETON AND THE MALCONTENTS
    (pp. 128-150)

    EARLY in 1766 the British government determined to make a clean sweep in Canada. In addition to recalling Murray and Burton for an investigation, it summarily dismissed Gregory and Suckling. To administer the colony it now sent out a man with inferior rank but superior power. Though he was only lieutenant governor,¹ because Murray still held his commission, he exercised all the authority of the governor, which was now augmented by the union of the military command with the civil government. He was also supplied with legal advisers far superior to those that had been given to Murray.

    Guy Carleton,...

  12. CHAPTER VIII TOWARD A NEW CONSTITUTION
    (pp. 151-176)

    THE reaction started by Murray against the constitution which he reluctantly imposed in 1764 halted in July, 1766, when the Rockingham administration fell. The instructions directing a reform of the judicial and legal system to be more in accord with Canadian needs lay unnoticed in their pigeonhole for nearly a year after their completion in June, 1766. The problem of the new colony was quite eclipsed by the problem of the old colonies until May, 1767. Then rumors that the Duke of Richmond meant to launch an attack upon the ministry for its neglect of Canada awakened Shelburne, the secretary...

  13. CHAPTER IX THE QUEBEC ACT
    (pp. 177-201)

    CANADA’S new constitution was born as the American Revolution was breaking. That there was a connection between the two events cannot be denied, but it must be remembered that for several years the new constitution had been in the womb of time. There it may be seen gradually taking shape, and an examination of the process strongly suggests that, until almost the moment of birth, fear of a colonial rebellion had little influence compared with apprehension of another French war or concern for the feelings and interests of the Canadians.

    Many months before the Quebec Act was actually drafted, its...

  14. CHAPTER X THE INVASION OF CANADA
    (pp. 202-247)

    ON SEPTEMBER 18, 1774, Carleton landed in Quebec with the young family which he had acquired during his four years’ residence in England — a wife who was half his own age, and two infants. The wife was Lady Maria, daughter of his great personal friend the Earl of Effingham. She had been reared in Versailles and, as a consequence, she shared and may even have strengthened her husband’s predilections for a well-ordered society after the pattern of the Old World. That he was now about to achieve this ideal on the shores of the St. Lawrence and thereby to...

  15. CHAPTER XI A REACTIONARY GOVERNMENT
    (pp. 248-275)

    THE outbreak of the American Revolution caught Canada at an awkward moment of transition from one form of government to another. On May 1, 1775, all previous provision for the civil administration of the colony, including the ordinances passed by governor and council and the commissions issued to judges and other officials, were annulled by the Quebec Act. Nearly two years elapsed before new arrangements replaced what had thus been destroyed.

    To prevent a gap between the new and the old constitutions, or at least to bridge it as quickly and as completely as possible, the home government directed the...

  16. CHAPTER XII A WAR OF RAIDS AND SURPRISES
    (pp. 276-291)

    ON THE evening of Friday, June 26, 1778, the ship bearing Lieutenant General Frederick Haldimand¹ anchored before the capital of Canada. At noon on the following day he came ashore amid booming salutes from the ships in the river and the garrison of the town. From the landing place to the Castle of St. Louis the streets were lined by regulars and militia, and between their files the new governor passed up to the council chamber. There Carleton introduced him to the members, his commission was read, and he was duly installed by taking the oaths of office.

    Few native...

  17. CHAPTER XIII THE SHADOW OF THE WAR
    (pp. 292-328)

    THE war cast a deep shadow over Haldimand’s régime in Canada, and as a consequence his memory has been unjustly blackened. For a long time it was the fashion to depict the Swiss governor as a suspicious tyrant who filled the jails with innocent people. This tradition sprang chiefly from the voluminous writings of his principal “victim,” Pierre du Calvet. It was nourished by the known facts that the governor was distrustful and that the prisons were packed. It was able to take deep root because Haldimand never courted public opinion and because Du Calvet died too soon. His death...

  18. CHAPTER XIV THE SHADOW OF THE PEACE
    (pp. 329-356)

    BRITAIN’S empire in America could not be rent in twain without leaving raw edges. One of these was in the Gulf of St. Lawrence, where New Englanders, as British subjects, had played a leading part in developing the fisheries, which constituted one of the most treasured resources of the empire. Were they, because they ceased to be British subjects, to be excluded from the waters and shores that they had come to regard as their own and upon which their prosperity depended? The idea was intolerable. Therefore the American commissioners negotiating over in France were instructed to insist “that in...

  19. CHAPTER XV THE LOYALISTS
    (pp. 357-399)

    ANOTHER shadow of the peace was the fate of the loyalists.¹ British feeling was deeply stirred at the time because, as Lecky has pointed out, this treaty was an exception to a common practice in civilized countries — that of closing civil strife by generous acts of amnesty and restitution. The American Revolutionary War was largely a civil struggle, but in the terms of the treaty ending it the defeated faction found little real provision for justice and less for mercy.

    In the fifth article congress promised that it would “earnestly recommend” to the legislatures of the various states that...

  20. [Illustrations]
    (pp. None)
  21. CHAPTER XVI A RISING STORM
    (pp. 400-421)

    THE ending of the war let loose a political storm in the older part of Canada. The mercantile minority — no longer confined to Quebec and Montreal, for there were now a score or so of old subjects in Three Rivers — had been bound and gagged. The peace removed the gag but left the bonds. The natural result was a great outcry for deliverance. These freeborn Britishers were denied the right of habeas corpus, they were deprived of juries in the trial of civil suits, and they were unprotected by any known mercantile law, all of which meant that...

  22. CHAPTER XVII CHIEF JUSTICE SMITH AND LORD DORCHESTER
    (pp. 422-445)

    THE American Revolution is one of the most important events in Canadian history; its influence has permeated the whole of British North America’s subsequent development. Among its many results was the planting of the seed that another great crisis in American history, the Civil War, was to bring to sudden fruition in the formation of the Dominion. The man who seems to have found the seed and put it in the soil, from which it sent up a promising but premature shoot, was William Smith. For this reason, and because he was the most powerful single influence in the conduct...

  23. [Illustrations]
    (pp. None)
  24. CHAPTER XVIII TRADE, EDUCATION, TENURES, AND FINANCE
    (pp. 446-481)

    BEFORE proceeding to an examination of the origin and character of the new constitution, which is the natural conclusion of this volume, it will be necessary to consider several other matters that attracted public attention during the closing years of the old province of Quebec. One of these was the colony’s trade. Its several branches were the subject of considerable discussion both in and out of the council.

    On the eve of his departure from London in August, 1786, Dorchester’s attention was drawn to a problem that had arisen in connection with the fur trade. The men of the North...

  25. CHAPTER XIX THE END OF THE OLD PROVINCE OF QUEBEC
    (pp. 482-496)

    DORCHESTER fumbled with the constitutional problem. It was to him a Gordian knot which he had neither the ability to undo nor the courage to cut, and Smith was no great help to him, for he too was baffled by the complicated situation in the colony. Only one change could the governor recommend with assurance. That was the substitution of freehold for feudal tenure in the new districts. Yet he was not satisfied to leave other things as they were. He appreciated the strength of the demand for an assembly and admitted that it would grow, but he could not...

  26. BIBLIOGRAPHY OF PRIMARY SOURCES
    (pp. 499-504)
  27. NOTES
    (pp. 505-532)
  28. INDEX
    (pp. 533-551)