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Guests of honor—His Excellency the Earl of Minto, G.C.M.G., Governor General of Canada; Rt. Hon. Sir Wilfrid Laurier, P.C., G.C.M.G, Prime Minister; Mr. R.L. Borden, M.P., The Leader of the Opposition.

The guests of honor at the First Annual Banquet of the Club, on January 18, 1904, were His Excellency the Governor General, the Earl of Minto, Rt. Hon. Sir Wilfrid Laurier. Prime Minister and Mr. R.L. Borden, M.P., Leader of the Opposition. The speech of His Excellency on this occasion was one of rare excellence in which he alluded to the great things which the future held in store for the Canadian nation and closed with an appeal to those present that "in all the exuberance of youth and prosperity you should not forget the old folks at home - the parents of us all - possibly a little bit old fashioned, possibly not catching on to new ideas as quickly as you do, but full of responsibilities, full of the hard-earned experience of many generations and, thank God, as strong as ever still.

On this occasion the Prime Minister asserted the claim that "the Twentieth Century belongs to Canada." At another point in his speech the Prime Minister referring to Canada's position in the British Empire said: - "Our present relations with the Mother Country, though very satisfactory and likely to remain so far a long time, cannot always remain as they are. They shall and must improve as time develops but they shall and will be improved after the British manner, gradually, without violence and giving justice to everybody as justice is due to everybody."

The banquet was held in Harmony Hall. the President. Lt.-CoI. A. P. .Sherwood, C.M.G. in the chair. On motion of Mr. H.P. Hill, the Honorary Secretary of the Club, His Excellency the Earl of Minto, Rt. Hon. Sir Wilfrid Laurier and Mr. R.L. Borden. M.P., were elected the first honorary members of the Club. The toast of The King was proposed by the chairman and was followed by the toast of His Excellency the Governor General to which the latter replied in person.

His Excellency said: —"I gather, gentlemen, from the rules of your constitution that you hope by encouraging a knowledge of Canadian history and institutions, of Canadian literature and art, to foster that patriotism upon which the future progress of the Dominion must depend. Your object is in fact to establish those ennobling influences which go so far to form the character of a people, the framework, so to speak, upon which may be moulded a high spirited, refined and generous nation. No one wishes you success more than I do. The seeds of what you aim at have long been sown, the day is quickly coming when with your help I hope they may have time to ripen. But, Mr. President, the study of history, of literature and of art, in a new world must be to a great extent the recreation of leisured men, of men for whom in the early days of a rising country there is little room—it is the great soldiers, the fearless explorers, the scientific engineers, the hard-hearted men of business, who in the first place acquire a continent and commence the creation of a nation, —history, 1iterature and art follow in their wake to leaven the hardy elements which have won the battle of a rough life. Gentlemen, those who have gone before you have bequested to you a splendid inheritance. I always remember that apt saying - I forget just now to what distinguished statesman it is due - He said there are three kinds of men in the world: 'Those who write history, those who read it and those who make it.' Canadian men and women have made history and are making it still every day, but the present generation have more time than of old to write and read it.

"But, gentlemen, I hope that in all the exuberance of youth and prosperity, you will never forget the old folks at home - the parents of us all - possibly a little old fashioned, possibly not catching on to new ideas as quickly as you do, but full of responsibility, full of the hard-earned experience of many generations, and, thank God, as strong as ever. I have always been a strong believer in 'esprit de corps,' the spirit which to a soldier places above all things in the world the honor of his regiment.

"I believe in the man who says his home is the best of all homes, who swears by his own townships, his own province, and his own country, I was myself brought up in intensely Scotch surroundings, on the borders of Scotland, in the midst of all the romantic tradition of border raids and forays, believing that a Borderer was better than any other Scotsman, and that a Scotsman was better that any other man in the world. With such a training, perhaps you will believe me when I say, that if I was a Canadian, I would shout 'Canada for the Canadians' with the best of you.

"Clubs, such as yours, gentlemen, growing as they are, I believe, throughout Canada, directed as they will be on broad and manly lines, cannot but ensure that Canadian patriotism you so justly value. You have all my good wishes for the future which is before you. Go on making your history: let your wise men write it and your rising generation read it, but be we Canadians or Scotsmen, or from whatever nationality we spring."

The toast of Canada was proposed by Mr. W. L. Mackenzie King, First Vice-President of the Club. in a short and eloquent address in which he refereed to the early trials of Canada's founders, the difficulties of settlers and missionaries and the indomitable perseverance shown by them. The work of Confederation was, he said, not yet complete but would be complete by the exercise of the unselfish ability and commanding integrity heretofore shown by Canada and which it was a delight to honor.

Sir Wilfrid, in replying to the toast addressed the company as fellow-members, and said he was not over-presumptuous in doing so after the election which had just taken place and for which he asked them to receive his hearty thanks. Continuing he said: — "It has been my good fortune to run many elections, but I can assure you that I never ran one which cost me so little effort and gave me greater pleasure and pride than did the present—a pleasure not usually found in elections, because on this occasion my friend Mr. Borden and myself, although we do not see eye to eye on many questions, were both candidates, were both elected, and were both perfectly happy. (Laughter and cheers). If we were to run elections on any other basis I doubt whether Mr. Borden and myself could hope for the same results. (Laughter). Gentlemen, as I understand, the Canadian Club of Ottawa, is a young institution, counting only a few weeks, or at best a few months. Its motto and aim are certainly of the noblest. It is to promote Canadian patriotism, (cheers). I have noticed that at several points in Canada institutions have sprung up which are similar in aim and purpose. Whether it is the result of .any preconceived idea or preconceived action, or whether it is the result of a spontaneous movement, I do not know, but this I know, and this I am sure of, that the inspiration of this movement was the development of the Canadian idea and the advancement of Canadian unity.

" We are proud to call ourselves a nation, and it is a matter for pride that we have more population than many of the nations of Europe who have filled history with their fame and renown. We have more population than Switzerland. than Belgium, than Sweden. than Denmark, than Norway. Our population at this moment cannot be very far from six millions, and it is not presumptuous to expect that by the next census it may have reached eight million. (Hear, hear). We have witnessed the happy phenomenon within recent years of the end of what we used to call the exodus. At all events, I think we can claim that at this moment Canadian children are staying on Canadian soil. For more than sixty years a current of population flowed from the north to the south, but now are happily that has stopped. We are not only keeping our own people within the Dominion, but are increasing our population by drawing upon the country to the south. There has been in certain quarters some misapprehension as to the result of American immigration to Canada. I have, for my part, no such apprehensions at all. Whenever people live under good laws, well administered, and they are prosperous, they never resort to revolution. Whenever people are happy under free institutions, each succeeding decade only makes them more loyal and contented, and I have no doubt for my part that the American citizen who settles in the Northwest Territories and become a British subject under Canadian laws will in the course of time develop into a good Canadian, and his children turn out still better Canadians than himself. (Cheers). But, sir, while we claim with pride that we are a nation, we claim with equal pride that we are subjects of the British Crown - (hear, hear) - with equal pride, I say, because our colonial status carries no inferiority with it: it is not subjection. (Cheers). We have found that our Canadian independence is quite compatible with our dependency as a colony. (Hear, hear). The relations which we have with the mother country produce this double result. The present relations, however, though very satisfactory and likely to remain so for a long time, cannot always remain as they are. They shall and must improve as time develops, but they shall and will be improved after the British manner, gradually, without violence, and giving justice to everybody as justice is due to everybody.

"There are two policies before us. There is the policy of concentration, and there is the policy of what we call decentralization, or rather local autonomy. In England there is a school which has some supporters in this country, which would draw the colonies into the orbit in which the mother country revolves as a European power, and would make us share not only the blessings of its institutions at home, but also the burdens, which naturally we would be called upon to share. The prototype of that school, which they often bring before us, is the Roman Empire, but in my conception and my reading of history there is no parallel in this respect between the Roman Empire and the British Empire. The Roman Empire was the most compact political entity that the world ever saw. Rome first subdued Italy then Spain, then the northern coast of Africa, and then across Egypt to Asia Minor; in fact, she subdued and brought under her rule all the nations of that day whose territories converged upon the Mediterranean. To those nations she gave the law, and they accepted it from her. Such is not the British Empire. The British Empire has not been formed so much by conquest as by discovery and colonization. Much as Britain owes to her soldiers, I think she owes still more to her sailors, and it is the sailors of Britain who have made the British Empire such as it exists to-day, and the British Empire of today covers a vaster surface of the globe than the Roman Empire ever did, for whereas the latter was compact, the former is scattered all offer the earth. You have British communities not only in Europe, but in America, in Africa and in Oceania.

" These British communities all have an existence by themselves. And what is the bond of union which has proved the most effective means of attaching these communities to the mother land?' Undoubtedly history is there to affirm it, the bond of union which has proved itself to be the most effective, the most potent, tile most powerful to cement the British Empire together has been local autonomy. self-government in all the colonies of Great Britain. (Cheers). Had this principle been understood and applied in the eighteenth century, it is not improbable that the civil war which took place would not then have happened. It is not improbable that the colonies which constituted themselves the United States of America would have remained attached to Britain and their people would be at this moment subjects of his Majesty King Edward, as we are ourselves. But the principle was not known at that time. It was reserved to Canadian statesmen, to the Baldwins and to the Lafontaines, first to claim its application, and the concession of the principle resulted in the binding of the colonies to the parent State as they never had been before in the history of the world. (Cheers). Perhaps, sir, as I said a moment ago, the institutions which have been sufficient up to the present time may not always remain as they are at the present moment. There may be more local autonomy required.

"For my part I ventured to express a few weeks ago the opinion that the time would come when we would require our own treaty-making power. I know too well the occasion of this gathering to enter into the discussion of such a topic. This is not a political organization, and if I were to discuss such a question I am inclined to think that my friend Mr. Borden would take the counterpart. I do not know that this is his idea upon this matter, but I am sure that we can both agree that we may well reserve the discussion for the House of Commons, which shall meet in a few weeks from to-day. I referred to this matted however, only to say that it has been asserted somewhere that the concession of the treaty-making power would mean the severance of the colonial tie. It is against that idea that I wish to protest. In my estimation, whenever the granting of power is necessary to such a colony as Canada, as Australia, as New Zealand, or any of the great self-governing colonies of the British Empire, to carry on their own institutions according to their own laws for the development of their own interests, instead of lessening it will simply strengthen the tie which binds us to the parent State. (Applause). This has been the history of the past; it may be the history of the future. No one could have supposed, for instance, in 1837, when there was a rebellion in my own Province of Lower Canada, when there was a rebellion in the Province of Upper Canada, that four years afterwards the same two Provinces would have been entrusted with responsible government; that the motherland would not hesitate to place in the hands of men who had been in rebellion the powers of self-government. So she did, however, and the result was to convert men who had been rebellious into the most loyal subjects of the British Crown. Sir, in the past Canada has been the pioneer in what I deem to be the civilization of the world, which shall be based upon peace. 1 told you a moment ago what was the difference between the Roman Empire and the British Empire. The difference can be summed up in this statement: —The Roman Empire meant war; the British Empire means peace and harmony amongst all the races which are subject to its rule. (Cheers).

"The more I advance in life - and I am no longer a young man - the more 1 thank Providence that my birth took place in this fair land of Canada. (Cheers). Canada has been modest in its history, although its history has been heroic in many ways. But its history, in my estimation, is only commencing. It is commencing in this century. The nineteenth century was the century of the United States. I think we can claim that it is Canada that shall fill the twentieth century. (Cheers). I cannot hope that I shall see much of the development which the future has in store for my country, but whenever my eyes shall close to the light it is my wish - nay, it is my hope - that they close upon a Canada united in all its elements, united in every particular, every element cherishing the tradition of its past, and all uniting in cherishing still more hope for the future." (Great cheering).

Mr. R. L. Borden was cheered to the echo as he arose in turn to respond. He began by expressing his thanks for the honor of election to membership in the Canadian Club of Ottawa. Such occasions as the present were but too infrequent in the life of public men in Canada, a fact that which added to his appreciation of the privilege extended to him. It was also one of the occasions, he added pleasantly, very unusual he must admit in the House of Commons, when he had no amendment to offer to Sir Wilfrid Laurier's remarks. He heartily agreed with the right honorable gentleman's eloquent closing observation. But as to his allusions to matters of political import, without entering into details respecting them, Mr. Borden would only say for the present that while he realized that the development of self-government in this country had been gradual and was due to the initiative of Canadians themselves, yet so far as the treaty-making power was concerned, it must be remembered that treaties must be made by the King and that the King must act in making them under the advice of responsible ministers. That Canada, he added, should have in the future a greater advice in the making of treaties which deal with Canadian interests, would be an undoubted advantage, but how there could possibly be worked out a scheme whereby Canada could make treaties on her own behalf independently of the rest of the Empire he was unable to see at this time.

But, however that might be, said the Conservative leader, both he and Sir Wilfrid Laurier were firmly hopeful of a future toward which both would work, a future of progress for Canada within the Empire. For the rest, of course, everybody knew the opposition had not much to say (laughter) but he must express his pleasure at noticing the rise of such clubs, bound together to promote Canadian patriotism. There were many important national societies in this country fulfilling a valuable function but while all might look with pride to the splendid stock from which we are sprung, we should do so concurrently with a pride in Canada and a determination to foster Canadian patriotism. As to the modes of doing this, perhaps the most efficient was to know each other better and know our own country better. (Hear, hear). This was a lesson that had been impressed upon himself during his peregrinations through Canada in the last year and a half. Formerly he used to avail himself of holiday opportunities to visit foreign lands, but having visited the great Northwest he had returned better Canadian than ever before. We never could have true national unity until we had a stronger national feeling and realize better than even we now do the splendid heritage which Providence has bestowed upon us. This though was equally applicable to the development of stronger imperial ties, and he was one of those who hailed with satisfaction such important factors in strengthening these ties as the Congress of Chambers of Commerce of the Empire recently held in Montreal, the members of which certainly returned home with a better realization than they had previously attained to of the resources of Canada and of the extent and opportunities of the Empire. With all our grand heritage, continued Mr. Borden, Canadians needed to cultivate a stronger patriotism if they were to develop it as it ought to be developed, and in this he thought we should take a lesson from the result that had been brought about in the United States by the inculcation of patriotism in the people from youth to manhood. The extent to which this patriotism inspired the people of the United States Mr. Borden humorously illustrated by citing the superlative effort of the American student who eclipsed his predecessors in after dinner patriotic oratory by proposing the toast to the United States "bounded on the north by the aurora borealis, on the south by the southern cross, on the east by the procession of the equinoxes and on the west by the day of judgement."

"Looking dimly it may be through the mists I can even now discern the future greatness which I am sure will place this Canada of ours not only in the fore-front of the nations of the Empire, but in the fore-front of the nations of the world. This is our dearest wish, the wish cherished with equal fondness by Sir Wilfrid Laurier and myself with regard to the country which we are proud to assist in developing, and to whose future I am sure every loyal Canadian looks forward as hopefully and as devoutly as we do ourselves."

Mr. Borden resumed his seat amid prolonged applause.

Mr. D. Joseph McDougal, Second Vice-President of the Club, proposed the toast to Sister Societies, which was responded to by representatives of the Canadian Clubs of Toronto and of Hamilton.

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