The Disgrace of Great Britain accomplished!
|The Disgrace of Great Britain accomplished! (1849)
|James Moir Ferres reports on the popular discontent felt by a part of Canada's population as Governor Elgin assented the Bill to provide for the Indemnification of Parties in Lower Canada whose Property was destroyed during the Rebellion in the years 1837 and 1838. A few hours after the 8 o'clock mass meeting, an "Anglo-Saxon" mob would burn down the Parliament of the Province of Canada then located in City of Montreal. In an afternoon Extra of The Montreal Gazette published on April 25, 1849,|
The Disgrace of Great Britain accomplished! Canada Sold and Given Away! The Rebellion Losses Bill Passed. The Governor pelted with Rotten Eggs!
This afternoon it was generally rumoured in town the Governor-General would proceed to the House, and give his sanction to certain Bills; but it never was supposed the Rebellion Losses' Bill would be one of them.
Ashamed of the part he was about to act, and expecting to steal a march upon the public feeling, Lord Elgin sneaked down to the House an hour after the time appointed, and after it was believed he had given up his intention he made his appearance in the Chamber oF the Legislative Council.
After assenting to several Bills of little importance, the Clerk read, with as little desire to attract attention as possible,
The Rebellion Losses Bill!
And to the eternal and damnable disgrace of Great Britain,
Rebellion is the Law of the Land!
The announcement was received with groans and stamping of feet. There were several other Bills to be assented to afterwards; but the galleries, in disgust, rushed from the Council Chamber, "muttering curses both loud and deep," — curses which will bear effect some other day.
"The few persons who had collected outside, on learning what had passed, burst into yells, hootings and groans, for "the last Governor of Canada."
When Lord Elgin — he no longer deserves the name of Excellency — made his appearance on the street to retire from the Council Chamber, he was received by the crowd with hisses, hootings, and groans. He was pelted with rotten eggs; he and his aide-de-camps were splashed with the savory liquor; and the whole carriage covered with the nasty contents of the eggs and with mud. When the eggs were exhausted stones were made use of to salute the departing carriage, and he was driven off at a rapid gallop amidst the hootings and curses of his countrymen.
The End has begun.
Anglo-Saxons! you must live for the future. Your blood and race will now be supreme, if true to yourselves. You will be English "at the expense of not being British." To whom and what, is your allegiance now? Answer each man for himself.
The puppet in the pageant must be recalled, or driven away by the universal contempt of the people.
In the language of William the Fourth, "Canada is lost, and given away."
A Mass Meeting will be held on the Place d'Armes this evening at 8 o'clock. Anglo-Saxons to the struggle, now is your time.