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North American. [volume] (Swanton, Vt.) 1839-1841, July 24, 1839, Image 1

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VOI. I, Cniintlinii HihtMniitl c:niir.linu Indepeiiileiire. NO. lei
rrnusiir.n bv h. j. thomas. j SWANTON, VT. JULY 21, 1839. j edited m canadians& americans
.... , ,-- - .jjsjta
tiu: NOHTH Airiu
! n i:!.!4-!!!.!) KVKHY H KINFI).Y,
V rie e S I jO 'T (in. in ndvuncc,
or ftJ (Mio- (e r hi 0 yrar,
and in likc proportiunfor fur
iti r drlay of pdìjmcnt.
also decree that the day of retribution l
noi far clintant, n lien the Canadian Patriot
L II f il .
Miau Buccessiunv avente the wrones o
hi oppresned country.
t fi m'm Hi in a crp.tt rsuse ;
"i t,r Im.wIi Mi ok their jorc,
! !,".r iihv f(..ì,!-n m ilie turi their limbi
lw nifi . ! ri! v Ve
r..J ri- l.tit llu-ir tpirit walk shroad ;
I 1 nifh j-mm f!ip", and ollicm tliare a dark a
t Km i 'iTiriit f ho Hoi-p an i ftweeping tliin!it
' nc '1 of'jKmi'11 ; miinr, ami which cuimIucis
T :,f .rl.( al Uit to fi eeiiwin. HKo.
JVple of Canada! Ilememher that the
''.l f marty rs in the canne of Fr i'.rpom
fc." aiutili fir vengcanre at vour hands.
.I'r.rii Mori was borri in SOS, at
1! '!! Come, in the l'arici of St. Marguerite
i'" Hlaiifindie, forrmionly called Lacadie,
:i that pari which now belone to the
ronnty of I.aprairie, District of Montreal.
!!ì( f3!her wasan honest larmer who held
1 very rcpectahle rank in society, helovcd
iil !i cwiiitry iiien. J 'ph wns bronghl
; :'i li Ih lai ber 'a profession, and settici! in
! e i! ird grand line of the Parisi: of Si.
Cvprien, and waa one of the first eettlers
i'that pince, fn 1 he married n eister
r Mr. Theoilore Bechard, who is now in
Montreal pil under sentence of death for
! 'i v i o danni to lift up bis arm against
Ufi: lv.li Tvranny.
The suhject of thia biography was a
-aloci friend of reform, and was always
vry adivi in promoting the politicai
-w) of the House of Aasembly. His
mio fitriired ol'tenlimes either as mover
r n seconder of rrsoluiions espressine the
iimvh h' eptertnined of colonial misrule.
'.'(.eri at lat, after the continue. refusali
(iri;t Hritain to do justice to Canada,
n i after the repeated injuriea she baci in
i ted iipnn Iter Conadian suhjects, it was
'eruied expedient to (jet rid of sudi a gov-
f rnrnnt. Mr. Morin inineil hì rniiniru.
nen in t lifi r desperate and noble efforts to
SMiin that end. On the Snl àav i( Vnv
ast he tnok up arms in accordanre with
! s pledjje and was nominated a Captain.
IIih CMiduct in the camp, bis hehaviour
'intiehe campain, and bis bravery on
lie baule fichi, proved that his countrymen
al made a vise eboice. At the sliirmish
lo! I.acolle Mills on the 6ih Nov., he dis-
I We l much deliberate firmness.
I The next day when the natriots. to the
: Jniher of aboot 150 men, were attacked
v t least 500 men, Captain Morin ehow
f l bravery unsurpassed by any officer in
ìie Patriot service. He was stationed
far the cunnon, shouldering a musket.
H.t soon after the action commenced, be
recetved a musket bai iti the head and
, fipirej immediately.
In his death Canada lost one of those
ve, hardy, and couraeeons ofTìcers who
'e a'ways much needed, more particularlv
t the tweinninqr of a desperate strueele
r freedom. Ali those who were acquaint
1 wnh Captain Morin, deeply reeretted
' hss. Ilespected in private lile as a
-J neijfhiW, a kind husbanJ and a duti-
Ji father, the short time he filled a noblir
f 'tin, he commanded the admiiratinn
in i kind feeling ofihe surrounding com-
f '-my. Death on the baule field will tend
"ncreasethe resaci and the pratitude
; los countrymen tur his belovej memory.
ihf.i! to bis politicai creed, he resortèd
I 8'm when he founj that bubmission to
'e Knjlish tyranls was worsethan death
I I surviving Menda bave the satisfarti n
f knowing that his iast drop of bbod -n
I I r liis dear but unhappv country.
! iiied the death of the hero, I)tat(, òr
' ftor was ,is mottn. Such was Caj-j
' t M.ifin in the prime of h'fe. He waJ
i jMrjof a-e and lefl a wi,)v withgi
i'en yet of tender ae, wb- neede.i !
r" much the foterinr cares of a father
: pmidence hai wisely decreed thal
'P1. Morin should bj one of die noble
T i who.hould expire to beinmortalized
'! pijes of history. May proviJer.ce J
14th, Ceorirt Hl.ChaptrrSn.Continued.
XIII. NVith the condition nevertheless
thal nothin; conlained in this oct shall ex
tend to muhorize and to eive power to the
sani Legislative Lounctl, lo impose any
taxis or duties in the said Province, ex-
cepting cucii taxes as the inhabitants of
any city or disti ict in the said Province
hai be authori.ed bv the said Cour.cil to
asse, and charme, aplicab!e to making
mail., erecting and repp.irinij the public
huitdinsjs in the said citiesor distriets, or
to any other improvements which shall
concern the locai advantage and utility ol
sudi cilies or distriets.
XIV. Provided nevertheless, and it is
esttblished by theauthority albresaid, that
ali the oidiriances which shall he made
ther.-in, shall he in the space of six rnonths
seni by the Governor, or in bis abence
by the Lieutenant Gevernor or the Coin
mamler in Chief, to he presented to Ilis
Majesty, so as to have bis Royal approba
tion; and thal ìf Jlis Majesty thinks pro
er tiMÌiiapprov; iheiii, they liliali bave
no torce, and they shall be anntilled troni
the moment that the order of His Majes
ty in Council shall be published to that
eirect at Quebec.
XV. Provided also that no ordinance
concernine the church or other ordinance
by which may be inflicted a pnnishmenl
greater than a fine, or an imprisonment of
more than three rnonths, shall bave no
force or elicci until it ubali have received
llis .Majesty's approbation.
XVI. Provided also, that no ordinance
shali be passed in any meeting ol the said
Council composed of a number less than
the majority of the members of ali the
Council, norat any other time than be
tween the first day of Jannary and the
first day of May, unless it be in some ur
gent caes; in which cases ali the members
of said Council who shall reside at Que
bec, or within the space of filty miles of
the saiil city, shall be personally summon
ed to be at their place by the Governor,
or in bis absence, by the Lieutenant Gov
ernoT or the Commander in Chief.
XVII. And it is moreover established
by the aforesaid autborily1 that noth
ing contained in this act shall extend,
or shall be understood to extend,
to preventor to deprive His Majesty, bis
beirs and successors, to erect, constilute
and eslablish hy their letters patent deliver
ed under the great seal of Great Britain,
such courts which shall bave criminal,
civil and ecclesiastical jtirisdiclions in the
said Province of Quebec, and to summon
at ali limes the jndges and officerà thereof,
such as His Majesty, his heirs and succes
sors shall think necessary and convenient
in ine circurastances ol the said Pro
vince. XVIII. Provided always and it is by
these presenta established that notbing
contained in this act shall extenci, or shall
be understood to extend, to invalidate or
annui in the said Province of Quebec, any
actsof the Parliarnent ol Great Britain al
ready made, which prohibit, restrain or
regulate the trade of the Colonica and
plantations of His Majesty in America;
and that ali and every one of the said acts,
as also ali acts of the Parliarnent hereto
fore made, which relate to, or which con
cern the said Colonica and plantations,
shall be, and are by these presenta de
clared to be in force in the 6aid Province
of Quebec, and in every part thereof.
Such was the act passed by the Imperiai
Parliarnent at a time when the colonies of
Great Britain were on the ève of revolting
against the mother country. England
was tben watching with learful apprehen
sions the progress of the true principles
of repreentative governincnt in ber Amer
ican colonies. and Parliarnent felt th
danger of granting a Constitutional gov
ernrnent to Canada fearing that the Cana
dians when once enlightencd in regard to
the rights of freemen, would dare to asserì
theui, after the example of the thirteen
colonies. It was from these motives and
tfiese fear3 that the Act 14, Geo. HI. chap.
83, was passed. The British government
felt assured that the Canadians would be
well BatisfieJ if their old laws were restor
ed lo them, and no encroachmenis made
uon their religion. !
itselfwere calculated to create confusion. tithes lo their priosts, these have ahvayn
The net re-etabli.hcd "the laws and i bren the niost 6iipp!e and the most legrad
usages of Canada," when it was well
known that the " laws of Canada" were
notbing of themselves, Canada before the
conquest had been regulaled by the' cou
tume de Paris" and sue1) provincia! ordin
ances as were passed by the Superior
Council of Quebec. The object of the
Parliarnent in making U9.' of such phraseol
ogy as to render every clause vague and
obscure, from which ivt uhi very surely
arise litigious dispute, was to give them
one day or anolher an excuse to Bettle t Ite
business according to the construction
which fintisi interest might put on the
The King in his instructions to the
Governor of the Province, gave an ex
planalion of the bill as understood by his
advisers. We shall give to oir readers a
passage of those instructions, which is as
" The establishment of couit3 for the
good administration of justicein the whole
Province, according to the eelt'ed princi
ples of said bill (1774) so as to provide
more eflìciently for its government, rerjuire
your greatest care and ali your prudence.
For as itis ourgracious desire, inconformi
ty to the intention & spirit of said act that
our Canadian suhjects may enjoy the ben
efit of the use of their own laws and usages
in ali questions which relate to titles of
land, tenure, inberitance, incumbrances,
and agreement as to immoveable property
and to the dtVtribution "of the personal pro
perty of those persona dead ab intestai; on
the other band it filiali be the duty ofthe
Lcg. Council whilst making the neceesary
ordinances to establisb courts for the bet-
ter administration of justice, to consider if
the English laws can be, in part if not in
foto, the rule by which to decide in ali per
sonal, actions arising from debtg, promises,
contraets and agreemenis of a commercial
nature or otherwise, as also in ali the
cases subject to damages, and more partic
ularlv those in which our 6ubjects horn in
Great Britain, Ireland or the plantations,
residing at Quebec, or who may come
thiiher or who have thereat commercial
business or property, are plaintifls in a
civil cause of this nature."
In perusing attentively this bill and then
reading the instructions giveti by the King
to the Governor of Canada, we see that
in the first it is declared that the lavos and
usages of Canada were to be renewed in
the Province, whilst by the second the
King gives instructions to his Governor to
put in force as much as possible the Eng
lish laws in Canada. The laws and usages
of Canada were words nearly devoid
ofmeaning, which in connexion with the
contradictory instructions of the King pre
cluded the possibilità of finding any rega
lar standard or criterion by which the jiidg
es and lawyers could form an opinion. This
shall be shown in a more ampie manner
when we come to the famous inquest held
by order of Lord Dorchester, 1787, on the
administration of justice.
The Quebec bill did indeed satisfy for
the moment the French Canadians. Their
inadmissibility to the Legislative Council
wasentirely removed, their ancient laws
rendered to them to a great extent, their
church tolerated and the oath to the
Crown of England so miligated as noi to
interfere with their scruples of conscience
If we add to this the powerful influence
the Roman priests had then over the peo
ple and which' was used to show the people
how graleful they ought to feel to Great
B.'itain for its generosity and kindness to
wards her Canadian suhjects, we shali not
feel surprised to find the Canadians better
satisfied then an enlightencd people would
have been. England understood its inter
est, she well knew that in buying the
priests of a nation, there is always great
prnbability ifnot certainty of seeing the
mass of ihe people follow blindly what
ever course they recommend. It was
in consequence of thia knowledge that
this Quffcce Bill provided for the main
tenar.ee of the Catholic clergy, and well
may we say that tir.ee the English gov-
ed tools of the Briùsh government. AH
that the priests wanted. was theJr portion
nf the loares and Jìshes, and lim the Eng
lish government bad given t!iem,lhe priests
were then readv at the first command
from the Gasile of St. Loum to preacl
passive obedienee to the authoritics which
paid them so well at the expense ofthe
The bill of Quebec was occornpanied bv
anolher or. e inlituled, an Act to provide
a fund to delray the exjwnses of the ad
ministration of justice, and to support the
civil government in the Province of Que
bec in North America." Whilst the whole
of the thirteen English Colonies were pe
titioning and remonstrating againsi the
right of Great Britain to tax them without
their being properly represented in the
English Parliarnent, the poor Canadians
were Bubmitting tamely to those very acts.
To give to our readers an idea of the
opinion that some enlightencd Canadians
had of the bill of 1774, we shall quote the
remarks of Mr. Du Calvet a Canadian ol
great talenta and much persecuted. " The
bill of Quebec re-established in the Pro
vince the French laws; we must begin by
remarking that the legislatore have ex
pressed themselves in obscure and ambigu
oua terme: according to the theorv of
law, this obscurity would suiTìce to annui
the Act, and ought to prevent it Croni be
ing approvcd by the nation; for the law
teachers teli us that the obscurity of a law
renderà it nuli (lex obscura,lex nulla;) and
indeed the expression " French JLau:" is
ambiguous and equivocai which brings to
the mind but vague, indetermined and in
definite idea.s; it may signify either the
fundamental laws, that is to say the con
stilution of the French government, or
only the cnu7 laws, in other words the
French jurisprudence; and it is thia dou
blé rneaning which wrongly handled, has
been the primitive eource ofthe calami
ties which have desolated, and even now
desolate the Province of Quebec."
A little furtherMr. Du Calvet describes
the powera conferred on the Governor of
Canada by the bill in the following man
ner, " Indeed the power of the Governor
of Quebec devouri and absorba ali other
power; be is in reality the sovereigri
master of ali; his titles of generalissimo of
Ilis Majesty's forces, gives bini the power
to dispose at bis will of the militaryde
partment; the dependance under which
are daily curbed the members ofthe Legis
lative Council whom he r.ames or dispiace
at hia own cimice and whim, makes of
those Legislative Councillors but the mere
echoesofhis orders, unless they expose
themselves to be immediately degraded
and turned outof office; in faci he is ibe
ouly Legislator of the Province."
" By the re-cstablishment ofthe militia,
whose officerà are ali named by him, he
keeps under bis conimi and guidance ali
the parishe8 which he charges with taxes,
and forcea them to public works accordine
to bis dictates; as grnnd Chancellor and
President of ali the Courta of Judicature
thejudgcs of which are named and ap
pointed according to bis orders, he con
firrns or cancels in an arbitrary manner,
iheir judgemenls; it is he and he alone
who, in person or by his substitutes
renders the oracles of justice according
to the dictates of hia passion ; to
crown thia snpremacy, so arbitrary and
despotic, bis person ia above the laws;
every one is brought to his tribunal whilst
he (the Governor) is not responsive to
any one for his judgements nr condiict.
An appeal to the jutice of England is
but a fine theory lo cover beforeliand ali
kinda of infamoua practicen; ilis a poliey
of external show to dnpc an innoceut and
credulous jeople. Thia apjea! is only
nominai and abusive."
Such were the opiniona of the leading
French Canadians in regard to thedeapf
tic iiifl-ience of the Qnebc. Bill. Alter
what has been naid by Mr. Du Calvei. we
neeil only add the a ddres? of ihe Continen
tal Copgress to enlighten i:ur rcadej3 in
relation to said Bill.
( To be conhnved.)
ITi onttitriw tht Xorth Amtriran.
Extraet of Mr. Du Calvet's letter to the
Abnut thia time I was called to Quebec
for a legai recogniance in which I waa to
plead bef-.re the Court of appeal. The
ball tould have been enteredinto by a power
of Attornev, but tyranny was neeking lor
my person lo complete the triumph of iti
injustices. My business being transactedr
and on the ève of leaving for Montrenl I
went and paid my respect to the doverti--nr.
Mr. Ilaldimand as an hypocrite and
false man, received me with extreme po
liteness, whilst under ali these fair appear
ances of kindness, he was issuing an order
by which I was to be arrested at about
mid-way of my journey. It was belween
the town of Three Rivera and Pointe du
Lac that I was to be apprehended.
I shall not recali to your minda the
dillerent scenes through which they urged
me during the first puri ofmy imprison
ment; I have given them elsewhere, against
their expectation my constitution resistei!
ali their efTorts united together todeatroy
il gradually. My fortune was then their
next object. it ia with these views that
during the long daya of my eaptjvjty, my
property was abandoned to pillage, with
out aliowing that an administrator should
be named. It waa not enough to accele
rate my min, but they put a stop to al)
lawsuits wherein I was the PlaintifT, and
ali my enemies were solicited to prosecute
me, well understanding that I was not al
lowed to defend myself.
The audacity ofsuch an injustice was
never more glaring than in a lawsuit with
my former agent. It was on Sunday,
(which day in ali Christian empires, invali
dates ali civil acts,) that I was summoned
in my celi to apjiear the next day in court.
although a sentry on duty was placed at
my door to prevent my appearance at the
court; it was not till the next day in the
morning that I could employ a lawyer in
my stead. This gentleman pleaded bis
ignorance of the case that was put imo
bis banda only a few hours before, and on
thia plea, which was well known to the
public, he concluded by requesting eight
daya delay.
The furious Mr. MaBane, one of the
jndges objecled most vehemently against
thiarequest, saying in his wrath that a
few hours were suffìcient for a lawyer to-
become acquainted with a commercial
transaction, bowever intricate it might be,
and that moreover the court owed no judi.
rial concession to astate prisoner, already
under the military laws of the state. On
thianew construction ofthe law be con
cluded by condemning me immediately
without even the right of appeal and with
out delay for the execution. General
Ilaldimand who before had never taken
his seat in this court, did not blush to be
the echo of such an atrocious sentence,
which in ita execution took.away fror
me about $20,000.
At the time I was taken priaoner, baving;
been summonel to give my portfolio, I
handed it to Capt. Law?; I put into it
ali my papera which I had the precaution
to seal. I requested the military gentle
man who w8 arrestine me to ask in mj
nameof General Ilaldimand that the offi
ciai examination of these papers ahoukl be
made in my presence. The Governor
bound himself by hia word to acqniesce to
my request and to respect my sea) during
my abser.ee; but he did not keep his word;
the portfolio was broken during night
lime, the papera were examined and the
greaterpart lorn; and it was in this state
hat the whole was returned to me in my
cell. '
Ahamed and vexed at baving faiied fn
thia first attempt with their usuai thirat
of vengeance they fiattered themselves
with the chimerical idea of better success
at Montreal. Officerà of rank such as
Brigadier General MacLean and Major
Dunbar, brother-in-!aw ofjodge Frazer
wereeent with two jo&fices of the Peace
Mc?sr. MacGill and Poiteoua to visit m-
'l s
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