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JOSEPH HOWE (1804-1873)
THE BRILLIANT ORATOR OF NOVA SCOTIA
OR many years the maritime province of Nova Scotia was the
abiding place of an orator of striking ability and power. Of
Joseph Howe it is justly said, “None could touch him in eloquence, logic of argument, force of invective, or brilliancy of rhetoric, and it is a question if the Dominion has ever produced his equal in these respects.” His powers were most effectively shown in the merciless invective with which he assailed Sir Colin Campbell and Lord Falkland, two Governors of arbitrary methods—fairly driving them from the province. In 1863, after long legislative service, Howe was made Premier of Nova Scotia. In the subsequent Dominion confederation he led a movement of secession on the part of Nova Scotia, whose people claimed that they had been carried into the Union by a trick and had been given no opportunity to vote on the act of Union. A compromise, by which Nova Scotia benefited, settled the difficulty, and Howe afterward sat in the Dominion Parliament. In 1873, the year of his death, he was made Lieutenant-Governor of Nova Scotia.
CANADA AND THE UNITED STATES [As a favorable example of Howe's oratorical powers—not of the sarcasm and invective in which he excelled-we append the following eloquent extract, in which is clearly shown the essential unity of race and purpose between the Dominion of Canada and the United States.]
We are here to determine how best we can draw together, in the bonds of peace, friendship and commercial prosperity, the three great branches of the British family. In the presence of this great theme all petty interests should stand rebuked. We are not dealing with the concerns of a city, a province or a state, but with the future of our race in all time to come.
NICHOLAS FLOOD DAVIN (1843-1901)
EDITOR, AUTHOR AND ORATOR
ICHOLAS F. DAVIN, connected in his later years with the
journalism of Assiniboia, owed his birth to Ireland, while his
early career, as a lawyer and journalist, was spent in London. During the Franco-German War he served as war correspondent for the Irish Times and the London Standard. Seeking Canada, he was called to the Ontario bar in 1874, and later to that of the Northwest province, being created Queen's Counsel by the Earl of Derby in 1890. In 1893, he established at Regina the Leader, the pioneer newspaper of Assiniboia. His powers as an orator made him prominent in political life, and from 1887 to 1890 he represented Assiniboia in the Dominion House of Commons, being noted as one of the most scholarly men in that body.
THE BRITISH COLONIAL EMPIRE [In 1897, during the Queen's Diamond Jubilee celebration, Mr. Davin represented Canada at the meeting held in Boston, Massachusetts, in honor of that event, and delivered there an eloquent address, suited to the occasion. A selection follows.]
This is a magnificent festival ; but, contrary to the rule, it is greater relatively than absolutely. Grand as it is, its grandeur is enhanced when we think that at this moment, not merely in London is the Empire's Queen gathering her children around her, but in great cities in all lands; in a land like this, which no British heart can heartily call foreign-for what is this great Republic but one of the lion's whelps grown to lionhood and for distinction's sake growing a pair of wings, and calling itself a lion of the air ; and, as we know from a hundred battlefields, when we look at your literature and see your extraordinary power and commercial activity, we conclude that, although you may be an eagle in the air, after all there is a great deal of the British lion about you. In great cities and capitals, under the southern cross, under northern auroral lights, in the eye of the
NICHOLAS FLOOD DAVIN
lean white bear, in the light of the midnight sun, under torrid skies everywhere in the civilized world-nay, in its uncivilized corners also—wherever British energy and pluck, fortitude and indomitable tenacity have carried British commerce and arms—and where have they not?-everywhere in the civilized world the same feast is held; in city and jungle; on mountain and plain ; in lonely remote deserts, or in far-off isles and seas. There is no clime so in hospitable, there is no tract so dangerous, no isle so little, no sea so lone, but over tower and turret and dome, over scud and sand and palm tree, at this hour, the flag bearing the three crosses of the three great nations of the two heroic isles rises with solemn splendor and sublime significance ; where it is day the winds of heaven reverently caress its immortal folds, and where it is night the stars salute it as a fellow star. .
Macaulay, led away by a love for effect, pictured a traveler from New Zealand sitting on a broken arch of St. Paul's; and the great Daniel Webster in one of his addresses reflected that if England should pass into decay, the great Republic which was her child, born in storm and bitterness and fated to greatness, would preserve her memory, her arts, her language, her love of freedom. England's time cannot come unless her Empire's time should come. Where is the nation, or combination of nations, which could meet this world-wide Empire united to fight? Instead of the New Zealander sketching the ruins of St. Paul's, we should have the Maori swelling the Imperial army. The men living in the two heroic isles show no decay, and as for their colonial children and brethren, our Toronto Highlanders beat the regulars the other day. In earlier hours of danger we sent the rooth regiment to the Imperial camp. We guided the Imperial troops up the Nile. Australia sent her sons to fight, and had arranged for her own naval contingent. South Africa has followed suit. What I see is more and fuller life everywhere.
It may be that we shall see despotism and tyranny and barbarism, civilized only in the art of war, combined against this Empire with its fifty millions of English-speaking men and millions of loyal subject races. It may be that we may have to face an Armageddon in which the oceans and seas of the round world will be purple with blood and flame, and it may be that this is not beyond the bounds of possibility--it may be we should succumb. If so, we would, to use language which my gallant friend and his marines and bluejackets will understand, we should fall as they fall and die as our fathers died, with the jack still floating nailed to the mast, leaving a name without a parallel and which never could have a parallel. Much more likely we should send tyranny skulking to its hold, cooped up in narrower bounds, and make the three-crossed flag still more the world's flag of freedom. All the signs are signs of life ; of expanding material, moral and spiritual power. This Empire will go forward, becoming greater in power and a still greater blessing to mankind.
THEODORE ROOSEVELT AND BOURKE COCKRAN