Canadian Pictures

Canadian Pictures

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Excerpt from Canadian Pictures: Drawn With Pen and Pencil

The confederation entered into in 1867 by all except Newfoundland gave to a central government the control over those matters which were of national importance. The defence of the country, the revenue arising from customs and excise, the regulation of the post, of navigation, of patents, and of all things affecting any two of the several Provinces of the Union were to be placed in charge of the federal power. A Senate, composed of men nominated by the Government, and a House of Commons, elected on the basis of the franchise then obtaining in each colony, were to legislate on all vital questions. Each province retained the power to pass its own laws on civil rights in the devolution and tenure of property, and on education; and in each a local legislature was maintained. The governors, hitherto appointed by the Crown, were, with the exception of the governor-general, to be appointed by the Canadian Ministry. Thus was a new nation started in political existence whose creation was the joint work of the British Government and of Canadian statesmen.

The union has been a most successful one. It would be difficult now to find anywhere a man of any mark who would vote for its repeal. Each year Strengthens the pride felt in its increasing cohesion, and the feeling of brother hood is cemented by the growing knowledge that each section has of the other. The two sea-boards on the great oceans, the three gigantic tracts, each so different, but each so vital - the region of forests, the region of prairie, the region of mountain and valley - of which the old provinces, the central territories, and British Columbia are respectively the types, are now known each to the other, and each is felt to be of vital importance to all. The Federation differs in many respects from the American, for less power is given to individual States, or, as they are called in Canada, Provincial governments.

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