Research The Canadian Problem

Lubliner

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There was an attempt to free Confederate prisoners on Johnson's Island by John Yates Beall and 20 Confederate volunteers who operated out of Sandwich ( now Windsor) Ontario , but after seizing a steamship the plan fell apart and they returned to Sandwich . I believe this whole plot was done in secrecy and have never found where Ontario authorities were aware of it .
I read about that incident I think in the Official Records. They were to commandeer a boat, or lease one out of Buffalo as I remember it, but my memory is faulty. Mainly confederate officers were kept there. Some of these may have been transferred down to Morris island when the Yankee prisoners were being used as a shield in Charleston; tit-for-tat about that!
Rock Island Prison is also on the list of conspiracy plans given to Hooker this go 'round. I believe it is near Chicago.
Lubliner.
 

CanadianCanuck

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So one thing to remember about how "Canadian" diplomacy was handled, was that it was a mixture of Secretary of State Seward speaking with the British Ambassador Richard Lyons. Lyons in turn would handle any issues through the Governor General of the Province of Canada, the Viscount Monck.

The Maritimes had their own British appointed Governors, but a startling number of international incidents were handled through Halifax and the British commander of the Maritime troops, Sir Charles Hastings Doyle as the various governors of the Maritimes (New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, and Prince Edward Island) had little real authority over their international relations.

The American Civil War was a big reason Canada eventually Confederated in 1867 both because of the fear of external invasion, and because it made both external and internal political maneuvering much easier.
 

Belfoured

1st Lieutenant
Joined
Aug 3, 2019
So one thing to remember about how "Canadian" diplomacy was handled, was that it was a mixture of Secretary of State Seward speaking with the British Ambassador Richard Lyons. Lyons in turn would handle any issues through the Governor General of the Province of Canada, the Viscount Monck.

The Maritimes had their own British appointed Governors, but a startling number of international incidents were handled through Halifax and the British commander of the Maritime troops, Sir Charles Hastings Doyle as the various governors of the Maritimes (New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, and Prince Edward Island) had little real authority over their international relations.

The American Civil War was a big reason Canada eventually Confederated in 1867 both because of the fear of external invasion, and because it made both external and internal political maneuvering much easier.
Several good points. And the Viscount was from the UK, had been an MP and had then served in the PM's cabinet before coming across the Pond to serve as Governor General. He was tightly connected to Palmerston so dealings between him and Lyons were effectively dealings between Lyons and the PM. This meant that any diplomacy involving what we know as Ontario and Quebec was 100% British.
 

CanadianCanuck

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Nov 21, 2014
Several good points. And the Viscount was from the UK, had been an MP and had then served in the PM's cabinet before coming across the Pond to serve as Governor General. He was tightly connected to Palmerston so dealings between him and Lyons were effectively dealings between Lyons and the PM. This meant that any diplomacy involving what we know as Ontario and Quebec was 100% British.

Quite effectively yes. I've never found any solid information on whether Palmerston was merely doing an old friend a favor by giving him a "cushy" job in Canada or whether Palmerston trusted Monck would be able to handle the usually annoying factions in Canadian politics, Monck himself basically admitted he took the job for the money. Whatever it was, it turns out that he was a rather inspired choice however!

And definitely 100% British, the internal ministers (like John A. Macdonald) handled the affairs like civic law, economic maintenance, ect, and could decide on trade deals with the US, but their diplomatic and military relations were essentially exclusively handled by the British.
 

Belfoured

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Quite effectively yes. I've never found any solid information on whether Palmerston was merely doing an old friend a favor by giving him a "cushy" job in Canada or whether Palmerston trusted Monck would be able to handle the usually annoying factions in Canadian politics, Monck himself basically admitted he took the job for the money. Whatever it was, it turns out that he was a rather inspired choice however!

And definitely 100% British, the internal ministers (like John A. Macdonald) handled the affairs like civic law, economic maintenance, ect, and could decide on trade deals with the US, but their diplomatic and military relations were essentially exclusively handled by the British.
One thing I've always found interesting is that when Upper Canada and Lower Canada were combined in 1840, the residents of Upper Canada (Ontario) had a say but those in Lower Canada (Quebec) did not. The first Governor General (Baron Sydenham) had aggressively pushed for unification as a way of getting fiscal stability (Lower C was ironically better off in that regard than U Canada) to strengthen the ability to fend off annexation by the US.
 

Lubliner

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Thanks for picking up the diplomatic angles involved in this affair, @Belfoured and @CanadianCanuck. The information would have been difficult if not impossible for me to have found, much less understood. Please, more.

On the Hooker angle, reminding us of the dates he began contacting authorities, December 3rd was Governor Brough of Ohio, and December 6th was AAG Townsend in Washington. The next communication I came to was December 12, in which Hooker contacts Governor Austin Blair of Michigan. So the rumors appear to be persistent, as he relates,

"Late advices from Canada, relating to the activity and designs of the confederates with their sympathizing friends, makes me solicitous for the property of your citizens along the border...[he is not worried of large armed bodies]…With regards to the efforts of individuals or small parties to burn and plunder, I feel less at ease." [Ibid. page 167-168].
At this particular time a new regiment was being raised in Michigan and Hooker asked for the time it would be outfitted and if he could borrow it for border protection once completed.

Turning now back to the weather and the strategic position of the western armies, Nashville had suffered a serious ice storm. General Thomas reports accidents and injuries trying to move cavalry on the front. It was impossible for anyone to undertake positional activity without consequence. Reflecting further north and knowing the season, already reports were of crossings made available on iced over stretches. The battle of Nashville is about to take place, and General Hooker, though dissatisfied with no field command is still pressing urgently and patriotically. I mention this due to aspirations and ambitions of whether Hooker had legitimate cause to complain about Grant, etc.
Also Grant removed Thomas from command in Nashville, having sent with Halleck's approval and confidences a telegram stating as much, then retracted it just two days before. Whether he considered Hooker as the replacement I am not sure. The ice storm was overwhelming and irrevocable, and could not be denied.
Yet with others of the Union command responding likewise with proof (such as Wood, Wilson, etc.), General Lyon of the confederacy has crossed a cavalry command near Carthage of 3000 troops and is heading toward Hopkinsville and maybe the Green River railroad bridge December 8th and 9th.

Another report on December 13, 1864 from General Steedman says about that day's reconnaissance, "General Lowry occupies a house about half a mile beyond Rains' house as headquarters. Citizens, rebel women, residing there informed us that General Hood rode that part of his lines yesterday, having his engineer with him, and directed the building of more works, and expressed himself confident of taking Nashville". [Ibid. page 173]. (Near Nolensville).

Giving pause here for reminders' sake, this is rebel information that does not quite add up. Hood couldn't mount a horse by himself, and on ice? By wagon maybe, but I still think false information. Anyway, these reports I mention show a bit of the political and military aspect concerning the Hooker threat, and whether the basis for it was legitimate. It also opens up the door of controversy surrounding the top Generals' favoritisms, quarrels, dissatisfactions, etc. Hopefully this is bearable and brings more weight to bear on the Canadian problem in 1864.
Thank you all.

Lubliner.
 

Lubliner

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Chattanooga, Tennessee
The original order was placed at 11:15 a. m. on December 9, 1864 by Grant to Halleck;
"Please telegraph orders relieving him at once and place Schofield in command."

By 4:10 p. m. Halleck had made out the order and notified General Grant who replied at 5:30 p. m.;
"I am very unwilling to do injustice to an officer who has done as much good service as general Thomas has, however, and will, therefore, suspend the order relieving him until it is seen whether he will do anything." [Ibid. Page 115-116].

Four days have passed, and Hooker was again denied a field command for leading troops. Could this have been added pressure for General Hooker to make a good show and push things too far?

Lubliner.
 

Belfoured

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Aug 3, 2019
The original order was placed at 11:15 a. m. on December 9, 1864 by Grant to Halleck;
"Please telegraph orders relieving him at once and place Schofield in command."

By 4:10 p. m. Halleck had made out the order and notified General Grant who replied at 5:30 p. m.;
"I am very unwilling to do injustice to an officer who has done as much good service as general Thomas has, however, and will, therefore, suspend the order relieving him until it is seen whether he will do anything." [Ibid. Page 115-116].

Four days have passed, and Hooker was again denied a field command for leading troops. Could this have been added pressure for General Hooker to make a good show and push things too far?

Lubliner.
No idea but I would never discount the possibility that Joe was manipulating a situation for personal advantage. It had worked for him in January 1863. It had blown up in his face, however, in late June 1863.
 

67th Tigers

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Nov 10, 2006
Thanks. I am aware of the book. One thing to keep in mind is that Upper Canada (today's Ontario) and Lower Canada (today's Quebec) were merged for about 25 years in the Province of Canada, which was intended to reduce the influence of the French Canadian vote because the parliament equally apportioned seats even though Lower Canada had a larger population. When confederation occurred in 1867 they again went their separate ways, this time as Ontario and Quebec. Given how the government was set up between c. 1840 and 1867, I'm skeptical that it was fully informed about Confederate machinations in Montreal.

The opposite I'm afraid. Upper Canada overtook Lower Canada in population ca. 1849, and at the time of the formation of PC (in 1840) Francophones were already the minority (about 45% of Europeans). The reason for equal number of seats from the two halves was to prevent the effective disenfrancisement of the Francophones (only about a third of the population by 1861).
 

Lubliner

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Chattanooga, Tennessee
It would be interesting to understand the Canadian viewpoint on the American Civil War in 1864 especially in December. We must remember that Lincoln had just been elected for another 4 years. The blockade against the south was choking off the supply of all goods from overseas while Mexico was in a questionable state of turmoil. Halifax up in Nova Scotia was a known 'safe' harbor for vessels with shipments to be run into. Until now I had never heard of Canadians taking part in our armed revolution, as stated a couple times in the posts above. We already were involved in a border dispute with Canada in 1846 when the upper boundary of Washington State was formed. This alone would have given Canadian diplomats a grudge for future settlement.

Hooker was in a very upset state of mind. He claimed that the Battle for Chattanooga was his rise to glory only to be put down by Grant and Sherman taking credit. Since that time in November 1863 he had been removed from active field command and given the State of Ohio to regulate. General Burbridge was in Kentucky as the Military dominance and at Bean Station near the border of Virginia and Tennessee running an active campaign to sever the railroad of Virginia, with Stoneman in Knoxville. Watching the Cumberland Gap and Saltville they were involved in top headquarter orders, though Stoneman was in a unfavorable light with General Grant. Burbridge had thrown political support for Lincoln in Kentucky, and some were saying the election there had been fixed. Now a liability to the President, Burbridge will be removed from command and the power given to General Palmer within two months. The Governor of Kentucky is chaffing at his raised troops being drawn away and used in another State. Rebel General Lyon will proceed into Kentucky at this time and reek devastation on many of the small county seats, destroying the courthouses in each one as a retaliation on the voted election.
General Grant has placed Sherman in command and given him broad orders, where Sherman is now near Savannah while Hood has turned and come north to attack Nashville. Hooker in his reports is maligning the campaigns being run like this, demeaning Sherman especially and Grant too. Thomas has had a misfortune with the weather and can't move. Grant has placed a great deal of significance on the timing of Thomas' attack and has lost patience. Grant has bottled up General Lee in Petersburg and Richmond, Sherman is scattering the other forces and sweeping through Georgia, and General Thomas is confronting Hood's army as 3000 rebels bypass Nashville and attack a State above that has limited numbers of troops. This is a serious setback if Thomas does not stamp out Hood; a very serious setback.
There is now no 'MacClellan Peace' to look ahead to in the future, with another four years of continued pressure and total war. The southerners will do all they can to survive with a lost hope and dashed dreams.
Again I must emphasize I never knew troops from Canada had been raised, and have yet to find documentation on the diplomatic channels between our government and theirs, though I know they are there in the O. R. somewhere. Thanks,
Lubliner.
 

Belfoured

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The opposite I'm afraid. Upper Canada overtook Lower Canada in population ca. 1849, and at the time of the formation of PC (in 1840) Francophones were already the minority (about 45% of Europeans). The reason for equal number of seats from the two halves was to prevent the effective disenfrancisement of the Francophones (only about a third of the population by 1861).
Really? The opposite I'm afraid. The formation of the Province was in 1840 - not 1849 or 1861. The census in 1840 for Upper Canada was 432,159. The estimated population for Lower Canada was c. 650,000. The census for UC was 487,053 in 1842. In 1844 the census for LC was 697,084. In 1848 UC had come close to catching up - census of 723,859 vs. est for LC of c. 765.000 - 786,000. Fun with numbers and words. UC passed LC in population ten years after the formation of the Province. Now on to the electoral college and how its origins relate to 2020.
 

Lubliner

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One thing I've always found interesting is that when Upper Canada and Lower Canada were combined in 1840, the residents of Upper Canada (Ontario) had a say but those in Lower Canada (Quebec) did not. The first Governor General (Baron Sydenham) had aggressively pushed for unification as a way of getting fiscal stability (Lower C was ironically better off in that regard than U Canada) to strengthen the ability to fend off annexation by the US.
So was Governor General Baron Sydenham a Parliamentary puppet? Their fiscal abilities were bolstered by trapping and trading, and shipping. By 1849 the real fear of annexation had probably ceased, so you don't think the Canadian Government kept a close eye on American relations between their own citizens and ours?
@CanadianCanuck are you okay with the given census? Also with the interior ministers and officials provided in post #24, Monck and MacDonald, being this civil war era 1861-1865, what viewpoints had they on trade negotiations with exports concerning the confederacy, and Britain's claim on Neutrality?
Thanks, Lubliner.
 

CanadianCanuck

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So was Governor General Baron Sydenham a Parliamentary puppet? Their fiscal abilities were bolstered by trapping and trading, and shipping. By 1849 the real fear of annexation had probably ceased, so you don't think the Canadian Government kept a close eye on American relations between their own citizens and ours?
@CanadianCanuck are you okay with the given census? Also with the interior ministers and officials provided in post #24, Monck and MacDonald, being this civil war era 1861-1865, what viewpoints had they on trade negotiations with exports concerning the confederacy, and Britain's claim on Neutrality?
Thanks, Lubliner.

Syndenham is a bit difficult to place. So here's some quick and dirty Canadian history, the previous two GG's of Canada, the Baron Seaton and Lord Durham, had just overseen the greatest calamity in Britain's North American colonies since the War of 1812 with the rebellions of 1837-38. The rebellions which, though not popular uprisings had minority support in Lower Canada (and not even that really in Upper Canada) still required British troops to put down and left the two provinces in political limbo. Seaton, more military man than politician, was replaced by Lord Durham who studied the problem which led to the revolts. Unsurprisingly he rapidly declared the problem was "the French" and informed the government in London it would be good to merge the two provinces into one whole so the French people could be assimilated. The government in London took the advice from Durham's Report and promptly created the United Province of Canada. Syndenham was also extremely anti-French and he tried very hard to set up a system where the English speaking Anglophones could just dominate the French politically, he died in a riding accident and was succeeded by Charles Bagot, and Bagot worked with the unjustly under credited Robert Baldwin and Louis-Hippoloyte Fontaine to craft a, remarkably fair, system.

That system basically worked so long as the number of seats remained equal, and they only did so because they weren't based on population. If they had been they would have meant that Lower Canada, which was majority French speaking, would have been able to dominate Upper Canada which was majority English speaking. The census notes here are correct, though the French were technically a minority even in 1840 overall, as the English on the whole outnumbered them. That became mostly irrelevant in 1851 when the faster growing population of Upper Canada outpaced Lower Canada in 1851 and the specter of representation by population (rep by pop) hovered over Canadian politics until 1867. Though that's a different stack of poutine.

As an aside, the fear of annexation didn't really go away until after 1867 when Canadians made very clear they wanted to stay with Britain. The war scare in 1861, the large demobilizing army in 1865 and the Fenian Raids of 1866 showed that there was still danger from south of the border.

But as to the men involved in Canada in 1861, Macdonald and Monck, both of them were very firm in upholding Britain's neutrality and viewed it as sacrosanct. I can't say either of them held any pro-Confederate views, but they also weren't in a position to negotiate trade deals with the Confederacy as Canada lacked an all weather port at that point. They were far more concerned with keeping the Reciprocity Treaty with the US going, as the war was actually making many Canadians rich from trading with the US who were in need of Canadian materials to keep the war going.

They both though stuck by British neutrality, and it was less that they turned a blind eye to Confederate actions, and more that they strictly stuck to the letter of the law. For instance, when a Canadian militia officer was caught trying to circumvent the Foreign Enlistment Act in 1861 and raise a regiment to fight for the Union, he was stripped of his rank and briefly imprisoned. Similarly, in the Saint Albans Raid of 1864, they captured the raiders and sent them to trial... where a sympathetic judge acquitted them of all charges. That though, was the judgement and neither man would intervene to change that despite being displeased by it.

The two people who might have been interested in making trade deals with the Confederacy were the Lieutenant Governors of New Brunswick and Nova Scotia, Arthur Hamilton-Gordon and George Phipps respectively. However, they only controlled foreign relations and defence (and some internal ministerial positions) so could not really do much about trade deals since Britain never recognized the Confederacy. They both honored British neutrality and tried, with middling success, to enforce it. However, they couldn't stop the merchants and politicians of their provinces from engaging in blockade running and sheltering Confederates. The Maritimes became a bit of a bed of Confederate sympathy largely because they had something to gain from Confederate success and were also getting rich on blockade running.
 

Saphroneth

Major
Joined
Feb 18, 2017
Really? The opposite I'm afraid. The formation of the Province was in 1840 - not 1849 or 1861. The census in 1840 for Upper Canada was 432,159. The estimated population for Lower Canada was c. 650,000. The census for UC was 487,053 in 1842. In 1844 the census for LC was 697,084. In 1848 UC had come close to catching up - census of 723,859 vs. est for LC of c. 765.000 - 786,000. Fun with numbers and words. UC passed LC in population ten years after the formation of the Province.
Based on a reading of what 67th said, I don't think you're actually disagreeing about the facts - unless you disagree with the first one, which I'll highlight.

67th said that:

1840 - formation of the Province, Francophones in the minority at 45% (meaning UC anglophones plus LC anglophones > LC francophones).
1849 - LC overtaken by UC
1861 - Francophones form about 1/3 of the population
The opposite I'm afraid. Upper Canada overtook Lower Canada in population ca. 1849, and at the time of the formation of PC (in 1840) Francophones were already the minority (about 45% of Europeans). The reason for equal number of seats from the two halves was to prevent the effective disenfrancisement of the Francophones (only about a third of the population by 1861).

Bolded is the one which may be disputed. It makes sense to me that it would be the case (not everyone in LC was francophone) but it seems to be the only point of dispute in fact.

It could also be inferred based on the relative population growths that crossover was going to take place at some point.
Year
Area/Province
Population
Year
Area/Province
Population
1806​
70718​
1806​
250000​
1824​
Upper Canada​
150066​
1825​
Lower Canada​
479288​
1825​
Upper Canada​
157923​
1832​
Upper Canada​
263554​
1831​
Lower Canada​
553134​
1840Upper Canada
432,159
1840Lower Canada~650,000
1848​
Upper Canada​
725879​
1844​
Lower Canada​
697084​
(The final row is not directly comparable by date)

In 1806 the population of LC was 3.5 times that of UC; in 1825 it was 3:1; by 1832 the ratio was about 2:1, and as of formation of PC it was about 3:2. Since this is information that the people making the decisions would have at the time, it's pretty clear that they could have determined crossover was coming (or was at least likely) and therefore that equality of seats would briefly advantage UC but thereafter advantage LC once crossover took place - which it in fact did a decade later.
I would be willing to believe that representatives of LC were sufficiently short sighted not to notice the coming crossover, but I think it more likely that they did see it coming.
 

67th Tigers

1st Lieutenant
Joined
Nov 10, 2006
Really? The opposite I'm afraid. The formation of the Province was in 1840 - not 1849 or 1861. The census in 1840 for Upper Canada was 432,159. The estimated population for Lower Canada was c. 650,000. The census for UC was 487,053 in 1842. In 1844 the census for LC was 697,084. In 1848 UC had come close to catching up - census of 723,859 vs. est for LC of c. 765.000 - 786,000. Fun with numbers and words. UC passed LC in population ten years after the formation of the Province. Now on to the electoral college and how its origins relate to 2020.
Yes, really.

Upper Canada was explosively growing as new settlers moved into it, and much of the growth in Lower Canada was new English-speakers settling around Montreal. In 1840 Francophones were already a minority in Canada, and the demographics were moving against them. The off trend jump in the population in the 1850's is almost entirely Anglophones settling around Montreal.

Canada Pop.png

The Franophones wanted their situation in 1840 made permanent; that is they wanted a majority of MPs, and to keep them even after they were only a third of the population or less (as was the case in 1861). The Anglophones wanted completely equal representation, which would give them a clear majority by 1850. The compromise was to weight East and West Canada equally, meaning no one side could ride roughshod over the other.
 

Belfoured

1st Lieutenant
Joined
Aug 3, 2019
Based on a reading of what 67th said, I don't think you're actually disagreeing about the facts - unless you disagree with the first one, which I'll highlight.

67th said that:

1840 - formation of the Province, Francophones in the minority at 45% (meaning UC anglophones plus LC anglophones > LC francophones).
1849 - LC overtaken by UC
1861 - Francophones form about 1/3 of the population


Bolded is the one which may be disputed. It makes sense to me that it would be the case (not everyone in LC was francophone) but it seems to be the only point of dispute in fact.

It could also be inferred based on the relative population growths that crossover was going to take place at some point.
Year
Area/Province
Population
Year
Area/Province
Population
1806​
70718​
1806​
250000​
1824​
Upper Canada​
150066​
1825​
Lower Canada​
479288​
1825​
Upper Canada​
157923​
1832​
Upper Canada​
263554​
1831​
Lower Canada​
553134​
1840Upper Canada
432,159
1840Lower Canada~650,000
1848​
Upper Canada​
725879​
1844​
Lower Canada​
697084​
(The final row is not directly comparable by date)

In 1806 the population of LC was 3.5 times that of UC; in 1825 it was 3:1; by 1832 the ratio was about 2:1, and as of formation of PC it was about 3:2. Since this is information that the people making the decisions would have at the time, it's pretty clear that they could have determined crossover was coming (or was at least likely) and therefore that equality of seats would briefly advantage UC but thereafter advantage LC once crossover took place - which it in fact did a decade later.
I would be willing to believe that representatives of LC were sufficiently short sighted not to notice the coming crossover, but I think it more likely that they did see it coming.
That's a bit of a different argument, of course. And there's little doubt that LC was largely "francophone" at the time. Just as PQ is siginificantly - but far from entirely - "francophone" today. That issue also ignores the separate question regarding fiscal disparity at the time between LC and UC. Last, we can speculate about what was foreseen - clearly or not - by whom 10 or so years down the road, but that's what it is - speculation.
 

Saphroneth

Major
Joined
Feb 18, 2017
That's a bit of a different argument, of course. And there's little doubt that LC was largely "francophone" at the time. Just as PQ is siginificantly - but far from entirely - "francophone" today. That issue also ignores the separate question regarding fiscal disparity at the time between LC and UC. Last, we can speculate about what was foreseen - clearly or not - by whom 10 or so years down the road, but that's what it is - speculation.
My interest was in pointing out that 67th based his assessment on a number of correct statistics, plus one which we could reasonably infer to be correct (i.e. that in the Province there were fewer Francophones than Anglophones). In 1840 assuming all of UC was Anglophone then it would take the LC population being about 25% Anglophone for the 45% total Francophones in PC to hold - which doesn't seem unreasonable.
Certainly if the intent was to boost the power of the Anglophone population then it backfired quite quickly.
 

67th Tigers

1st Lieutenant
Joined
Nov 10, 2006
My interest was in pointing out that 67th based his assessment on a number of correct statistics, plus one which we could reasonably infer to be correct (i.e. that in the Province there were fewer Francophones than Anglophones). In 1840 assuming all of UC was Anglophone then it would take the LC population being about 25% Anglophone for the 45% total Francophones in PC to hold - which doesn't seem unreasonable.
Certainly if the intent was to boost the power of the Anglophone population then it backfired quite quickly.
25% of Lower Canada being Anglophone is from the 1844 census. It was steady at ca. 25% through to the 1861 census, but was declining by the 1871 census.
 

Belfoured

1st Lieutenant
Joined
Aug 3, 2019
Syndenham is a bit difficult to place. So here's some quick and dirty Canadian history, the previous two GG's of Canada, the Baron Seaton and Lord Durham, had just overseen the greatest calamity in Britain's North American colonies since the War of 1812 with the rebellions of 1837-38. The rebellions which, though not popular uprisings had minority support in Lower Canada (and not even that really in Upper Canada) still required British troops to put down and left the two provinces in political limbo. Seaton, more military man than politician, was replaced by Lord Durham who studied the problem which led to the revolts. Unsurprisingly he rapidly declared the problem was "the French" and informed the government in London it would be good to merge the two provinces into one whole so the French people could be assimilated. The government in London took the advice from Durham's Report and promptly created the United Province of Canada. Syndenham was also extremely anti-French and he tried very hard to set up a system where the English speaking Anglophones could just dominate the French politically, he died in a riding accident and was succeeded by Charles Bagot, and Bagot worked with the unjustly under credited Robert Baldwin and Louis-Hippoloyte Fontaine to craft a, remarkably fair, system.

That system basically worked so long as the number of seats remained equal, and they only did so because they weren't based on population. If they had been they would have meant that Lower Canada, which was majority French speaking, would have been able to dominate Upper Canada which was majority English speaking. The census notes here are correct, though the French were technically a minority even in 1840 overall, as the English on the whole outnumbered them. That became mostly irrelevant in 1851 when the faster growing population of Upper Canada outpaced Lower Canada in 1851 and the specter of representation by population (rep by pop) hovered over Canadian politics until 1867. Though that's a different stack of poutine.

As an aside, the fear of annexation didn't really go away until after 1867 when Canadians made very clear they wanted to stay with Britain. The war scare in 1861, the large demobilizing army in 1865 and the Fenian Raids of 1866 showed that there was still danger from south of the border.

But as to the men involved in Canada in 1861, Macdonald and Monck, both of them were very firm in upholding Britain's neutrality and viewed it as sacrosanct. I can't say either of them held any pro-Confederate views, but they also weren't in a position to negotiate trade deals with the Confederacy as Canada lacked an all weather port at that point. They were far more concerned with keeping the Reciprocity Treaty with the US going, as the war was actually making many Canadians rich from trading with the US who were in need of Canadian materials to keep the war going.

They both though stuck by British neutrality, and it was less that they turned a blind eye to Confederate actions, and more that they strictly stuck to the letter of the law. For instance, when a Canadian militia officer was caught trying to circumvent the Foreign Enlistment Act in 1861 and raise a regiment to fight for the Union, he was stripped of his rank and briefly imprisoned. Similarly, in the Saint Albans Raid of 1864, they captured the raiders and sent them to trial... where a sympathetic judge acquitted them of all charges. That though, was the judgement and neither man would intervene to change that despite being displeased by it.

The two people who might have been interested in making trade deals with the Confederacy were the Lieutenant Governors of New Brunswick and Nova Scotia, Arthur Hamilton-Gordon and George Phipps respectively. However, they only controlled foreign relations and defence (and some internal ministerial positions) so could not really do much about trade deals since Britain never recognized the Confederacy. They both honored British neutrality and tried, with middling success, to enforce it. However, they couldn't stop the merchants and politicians of their provinces from engaging in blockade running and sheltering Confederates. The Maritimes became a bit of a bed of Confederate sympathy largely because they had something to gain from Confederate success and were also getting rich on blockade running.
Great information. Regarding the LC Rebellion, an added issue was the presence of some Patriotes in the US.
My interest was in pointing out that 67th based his assessment on a number of correct statistics, plus one which we could reasonably infer to be correct (i.e. that in the Province there were fewer Francophones than Anglophones). In 1840 assuming all of UC was Anglophone then it would take the LC population being about 25% Anglophone for the 45% total Francophones in PC to hold - which doesn't seem unreasonable.
Certainly if the intent was to boost the power of the Anglophone population then it backfired quite quickly.
Mixing and matching. The totals in LC were skewed heavily in favor of the "Francophones". And yes, marching forward 10 years, it appears to have "backfired". But we're discussing intentions in 1839-1840, not as things were by 1850. I would resist the conclusion that Syndenham had a crystal ball in 1840 absent evidence to the contrary. There's no evidence that he did and he clearly was motivated by strong anti-Francophone sentiments. What happened in the next decade was the result of intense - and successful - immigration efforts to what had been UC.
 

67th Tigers

1st Lieutenant
Joined
Nov 10, 2006
Mixing and matching. The totals in LC were skewed heavily in favor of the "Francophones". And yes, marching forward 10 years, it appears to have "backfired". But we're discussing intentions in 1839-1840, not as things were by 1850. I would resist the conclusion that Syndenham had a crystal ball in 1840 absent evidence to the contrary. There's no evidence that he did and he clearly was motivated by strong anti-Francophone sentiments. What happened in the next decade was the result of intense - and successful - immigration efforts to what had been UC.
I would suggest that they had basic maths in 1840, and could see what would happen. Indeed, this point was raised by Lord Ellenborough during at committee and during the debate on the bill because it was unfair on the Anglophones who would soon be the majority (in fact, already where), and would give the Francophones more power than their population.
 
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