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British North America
Nova Scotia


By JAMES S. MACDONALD (Of Halifax, N.S.)

In furnishing a brief paper on my native province, Nova Scotia, I feel at the outset the difficulty of presenting in a few pages but a brief outline of the long, varied, and interesting record of this, the eldest colony of Britain. In condensing, I will endeavour to avoid the lumber of historical articles, statistics, and minute references to unimportant facts, and only give those leading events without which the paper would be valueless. Connected as Nova Scotia and her people are by ties of blood and tradition with Britain, we are gratified to find that the indifference with which the colonies were treated in former years is rapidly changing to a vital interest, which will be well appreciated by those younger branches of the empire; this interest will prove beneficial to all concerned, it will preserve and strengthen their attachment to Britain, thus contributing to the stability of all.

The history of every country in Europe commences in the region of fable, and the accounts given of the early ages at all, are at best plausible conjectures. The discovery of the western continent of America is in this respect just the reverse. The discovery was an event of modern occurrence, and was accompanied by the important art of printing, which, by multiplying the copies, preserved the journals of those who explored and settled the New World. But if the materials of American history are unlike those of Europe, the events are even more different. The progress and change from a state of nature towards an elevated civilisation is always slow, and the troublous settlement of America affords an interesting study and subject for contemplation.

The claim of Britain 011 Nova Scotia was founded upon discovery. During the tranquil reign of Henry VII., commerce and manufacture increased to such an. extent as to attract to England merchants from all parts of Europe, among them a Venetian named Cabot, an experienced mariner. The short route to India was his hobby, and he so influenced the king that lie was granted a commission in 1496, with powers to sail with three ships to seek and discover all the isles, regions, and lands of heathens unknown to Christians. This commission included powers to his three sons, Sebastian, Saucas, and Louis, who were to accompany him. Henry reserved to himself the dominion of all discovered. Thus in this voyage of discovery the object of the sovereign was dominion, while gain stimulated the subject. Two caravels were fitted out at the public expense, freighted by merchants of London and Bristol, manned by three hundred men, and sailed from Bristol on 4th May 1497. Sailing west they sighted land, much earlier than they had anticipated, on 24th June 1497, which prima vista is now determined to have been the “ Sugar-Loaf,” a lofty peak of the Cape North range, in Cape Breton, eastern Nova Scotia; so that the colony has a claim to prominence in the fact that it possesses the point upon which the discoverer’s eye first rested when he so unexpectedly found America. Thus Cabot in the name of Henry VI1. had discovered and acquired the continent of America before Columbus had visited any part of the mainland, his voyages up to that date not having extended beyond the islands in the Gulf of Mexico. The discovery of Cabot in 1497, and the formal possession taken of the country in Elizabeth’s reign, are considered by Britain as the foundation of the right and title of the Crown of England to the whole of its possessions in North America.

Here I may say that the constitution of England, as it stood at the discovery of America, had nothing in its nature providing for colonies. The colonies have therefore at different periods of their growth experienced very different treatment. At first they were considered lands without the limits of the “realm of England,” and not annexed to it. The king assumed the right of property and government of the settlers, “his liege subjects,” to the preclusion of the jurisdiction of the State. The king called them “ his possessions abroad,” not parts and parcels of the realm, and as not yet under the Crown. Upon this assumption the colonies were first settled by the king’s licence, the governments established by Royal Charter, while the people emigrating to those colonies considered themselves out of the realm, and the king their only sovereign lord. This went on until the reign of Charles II., when Parliament asserted the right of government, and interfered in their regulation and guidance. So much for Britain’s right to North America. After the American revolution in 1776, the colonies preserved to England attained freedom from taxation, all duties, taxes, and assessments being paid to and for the use of the colony or province alone. The Colonial Office directed, but the colonies attained a liberal share of self-government.

For several years subsequent to Cabot’s discovery, an indifference to the new region appears to have prevailed in England. The venture of the merchants concerned in freighting the expedition was not a profitable one, and other adventures were cultivated for trade by those connected with Cabot. The French, then very aggressive traders, knowing this, sent Baron de Lery out, with powers to make a settlement, in 1518; but he returned, his mission having failed. The second attempt was made by London barristers, under the direction of a Mr. Hoare, of the Inner Temple, in 1536, but it came to grief. Then, in 1583, Elizabeth encouraged Sir Humphrey Gilbert to cross to the new region, which he did, and took formal possession for England, but the expedition failed, and Gilbert was lost on his way back to England. The next attempt and the first successful settlement was made by the French, under the Sieur de Monts, in 1603, when Port Royal was founded. The name of this place was changed to Annapolis Royal when taken by the English in later conquests. In 1604, Sir William Alexander, a Scottish knight and favourite of James I., received a grant of Acadia as it was then called, and sailed to settle the country with a large band of adventurers. The king, to encourage the settlement, created a new order of knights called “ Baronets of Nova Scotia.” The baronial lands of these new knights were of the most shadow)" description, but still they served to attract attention to the new settlement across the seas, and the descendants of those baronets of Nova Scotia to-day, ninety-one in number, hold their titles as proudly as any other of their honours. Nova Scotia may be a grander name than Acadia, by which the colony was previous to this date known, but it has in later days been a great drawback to the Province, as it has been confounded with Nova Zembla, and amusing diplomatic mistakes are recorded, by which Nova Scotia has been confounded with a miserable Russian island away up in the Arctic waters. From 1603 to 1763, when France renounced all claims to her once proud possessions in North America, Nova Scotia, and her eastern annex Cape Breton, became the very shuttlecocks of European diplomats, France and England Alternately in treaties now acquiring and again relinquishing possession; the English claims founded on discovery, the French on settlement. The first settlements of the French in Acadia were made at a very early period, being four years before the smallest hut was erected in Canada, As early as 1700, the French fisheries on the shores of Cape Breton were extensive and valuable. From Cape North to St. Peter’s every harbour and port had its contingent of fishermen from Havre, St. Malo, and other fishing centres of France. Several large fishing companies, with head-quarters at Paris, Marseilles, and Brest, fitted out and equipped large fleets of vessels for the Cape Breton fisheries. The men to man these fleets were largely drawn from a strange source—the galleys and prisons of France. Heavy bonds were given by the companies for the men selected, a deposit of ten livres was paid to government for each man, and if during the voyage the man died or was injured, one hundred livres were exacted as an indemnity to Government. These criminals were well cared for. They were mostly active men, and made good fishermen; they were well fed and clothed, and had experienced surgeons to attend them when ill. The change to the liberty enjoyed while on these voyages was, although limited, preferable to the galleys, and the majority proved satisfactory to the companies; and although opportunities for escape at times offered, few availed themselves of the chance—better stay where they were than fall into the hands of the savages in the trackless wilds of Cape Breton. Thus at a very early time France solved a very difficult social problem of the present day, viz. “What shall we do with our criminals?” The French returns of 1710 give an estimate of 23,000 men, employed in 2100 vessels, ranging from shallops to square-rigged caravels, on the coast of Cape Breton that year. The fleet sailed from France in April, and arrived on the Cape Breton coast in May, fished until August, and planned to be all back to France by ist October. The enormous revenue derived from this extensive fishery, the cradle it proved for manning the French navy, the control it gave France of the fish-markets of the Mediterranean and valuable centres on the continent of Europe, the great commercial value of the business involved, made the French nation keenly alive to the preservation of Cape Breton. They well knew its political as well as its intrinsic value. They considered it the key to the St. Lawrence, and so in 1713, by the Treaty of Utrecht, although Nova Scotia was lost to France, she retained her most valued possession, the island of Cape Breton. For the protection of these vast fisheries, the great fortress of Louisburg was built, at the time considered a triumph of the engineering skill of the great Vauban, who warranted it impregnable; it was defended by 400 cannon and garrisoned at times by 10,000 men. This great citadel became not only the refuge of the fleets of France—its magnificent harbour being capable of accommodating an enormous number of vessels—but it became a menace to English power in North America. Strange to say, from some unexplained cause, after the building of Louisburg the fisheries rapidly declined; the withdrawal of men from the fishing vessels for the navy perhaps may account in part for it, as France at that time maintained an immense fleet at sea. In 1750 the French returns show only 600 vessels sailed from France in that spring for Cape Breton; but by this date many vessels engaged in the fisheries remained in Cape Breton harbours all winter, settlements havn't been made at Ingonish, Port Dauphin, and Spanish River, all good shelters, so that a much larger number than reported may have been engaged in the still profitable Cape Breton fisheries. The French navy for years made

Louisburg their base of operation against the British colonies, and annoyed them to such an extent that the provincialists determined to attack this great stronghold, and if possible put an end to French power so near their shores. It looked like a fool-hard}^ undertaking, but, favoured by a combination of fortunate circumstances, the gallantry of the New England troops carried them through to victory, and Louisburg was captured in the summer of 1755. A subsequent treaty restored it to France, but in 1758 it was again invested by Britain’s land and sea forces, under General Wolfe, and it fell. After its capture it was determined to demolish the fortifications, and so this great stronghold disappeared. So extensive were the defences, and so well built the walls, that it cost £3000 in powder to destroy and obliterate this famous citadel of French power. After its capture Cape Breton and its great fisheries were neglected by England, and decay and ruin marked the site and surroundings of this second Carthage.

Previous to 1749, since which date England has held uninterrupted possession of Nova Scotia, the Province was well known to traders and fishermen for its fish and furs, but the settlements were unimportant and far apart. Annapolis in the west, and Canso in the east, were frequented, but the great seaboard was but seldom visited. The attention of the British Government had been repeatedly called by the New England colonists to the importance of planting upon the shores of Nova Scotia some prominent military settlement, to counteract the great French influence possessed by Louisburg. At last these representations had effect. Britain was at the time at peace, and burdened by thousands of disbanded soldiers, men who had bravely fought their country’s battles all over Europe, but who were a fearful encumbrance in time of peace—indeed, to the disgrace of the nation they had so well served, the majority of these poor men were starving. It was determined to make a virtue of a necessity, a settlement in Nova Scotia was decided upon, and Hon. Edward Cornwallis was entrusted with the important work of founding the settlement. In June 1749 lie landed at Halifax, with about 5000 souls as utterly unfitted as mortals could be for the troubles before them. The greater number were good enough at fighting, but quite useless for facing the privations of the wilderness. Cornwallis proved a hero; he worked well, brought order out of confusion, counselled, encouraged, and protected the settlers, until with broken health he relinquished his command in 1752, his work utterly unappreciated by the Government of the day. The troubles and labours of the settlers were greatly increased by the annoyance and cruelty of the Indians, who, incited by the French, barbarously cut off all stragglers into the forest surrounding the town; and no greater enemies had the settlers than the Acadians or Neutrals, as they were called, who had been allowed to remain in Nova Scotia after the conquest in 1713. For forty years they had had the protection of the British Government, had retained then farms and property, had the free exercise of their religion, paid no taxes; but they had firmly decided not to become friendly to the British Government, aud steadily refused to take the oath of allegiance. Their French friends at Quebec, trusting to events to regain possession of the Province, spared no effort in keeping the British settlements disturbed by the Indians and Acadians. The Abbe Reynal, their great apologist, describes them as living in a state of Arcadian simplicity, with all the virtues of angels. They had intermarried greatly with the Indians, and the French priests had free control of them, and as a matter of faith both Indians and Acadians thought the extirpation of the English heretics a very commendable thing indeed. Against foes so crafty, cowardly, and treacherous, the poor settlers had great trouble to maintain their ground in the endless fight.

By 1755, the trouble increasing, and the Government, finding that all efforts to conciliate the Acadians were fruitless, that they refused to take the oath of allegiance and were irreconcilable, that they would not live peaceably in the country, nor allow the settlers to do so, determined on their expulsion from the Province. In the autumn of 1755, 7000 of them in all, men, women, and children, were shipped away to the southern colonies, principally Virginia and the Carolinas; great suffering ensued, and much sympathy went forth for the people who had to leave the country for the country’s good. No doubt there were innocent exceptions, but the majority were a lot of cruel scoundrels, who helped the Indians in the butchery of the settlers, and who well deserved the justice dealt them by a long-suffering Government. Longfellow, who had doubtless read Abbe Reynal’s apology for the Acadians, who in the presentation of their virtues suppressed their crimes, founded upon the expulsion his beautiful poem “ Evangeline,” as beautiful a vision of romance and poetry as ever flitted through a poet’s brain, but as baseless in fact as visions are made of. The lands left by the Acadians were speedily taken up by many from the colonies of New York and Massachusetts. The new settlers proved a valuable acquisition; they were good, sterling, thrifty men, and helped greatly towards the tranquillity of the Province, so that a quarter of a century later, when all was riot and rebellion in the revolting colonies, Nova Scotia was loyal to the core, a conspicuous example of devotion to the old flag, which greatly helped to keep Canada—restless at the time—firm for the Crown.

The Governor of Nova Scotia at the date of the American revolution deserves remembrance. Michael Franklin was a man born to rule. He was a native of Plymouth, endowed with great talents, who landed in Halifax in 1767, and who without influence rose to place and prominence in the colony. Having a small fortune at the time, £5 00, he at oncc engaged in business. Rum was a legitimate article of trade, and money went further than it does to-day. He opened two shops, one at the Military Depot, the other at the Naval Yard, the two extremes of the town, and announced that he would serve free rum to all who would call at his shops before eight o’clock in the morning. As a matter of course he had customers; his rum was pronounced good; his patrons, who had honoured him by calling so early for his free liquor, were in honour bound to drink later in the day at their own expense. His patrons called often, his business increased; he became an importer, shut up his shops and sold it by the puncheon; was appointed a magistrate, became a churchwarden, raised a volunteer regiment, was chosen colonel, was elected a member of the local legislature—all this before he had been seven years in Halifax. Shortly after this, a vacancy having occurred in the Executive Government, he was called to the Council Board, and finally in 1775 he was appointed Lieutenant-Governor of Nova Scotia. His great popularity was the mainspring of his success; but lie backed it with energy, probity, and honour, elements admired if not always practised in a new settlement. Franklin, with his great knowledge of events, his judgment, and strong common sense, greatly helped to keep the Province loyal. He received great credit for his services at the time, but eventually received the patriot’s reward—the cold shoulder from the Government he had served so faithfully. His brilliant career, his rapid coming to the front in so strange a place as a Crown colony, where patronage is indispensably necessary, shows the material Franklin was made of. By this date the colony had grown considerably, the majority of the original settlers had passed away; the trials and privations of an exile to shores so rough, and to a life in the wilds for which they were so totally unfitted, had proved too much for them; but their places were taken by many from the southern provinces and the old country. An emigration of Scottish mercantile people in 1761, most of them with considerable wealth, proved a boon to Halifax at the time, and gave a tone to the commerce and social life of the colony, which up to the time of their arrival had been greatly wanted. In April 1775 the revolution in the American colonics began, blood was shed, and war ensued. It ended in September 1783, when independence was gained. That autumn 13,000 loyalists from the States came to Nova Scotia; many of them located at Halifax, the remainder scattered through the Province. They were mostly people of position and education, and had left the colonies, where the majority of them had been born, for their loyalty and allegiance to the king. They were welcomed warmly in Nova Scotia, became leading men in the community, and many of their descendants are still prominent among the energetic and progressive men of Nova Scotia.

In 1784 the settlement of Shelburne took place; 14,000 emigrant loyalists came from New York and built a substantial wooden town, at the head of a magnificent harbour, on the western shore of Nova Scotia. In their haste to settle they overlooked the fact that a town requires a country to support it. Surrounded by a trackless forest, far from the other settlements of the Province, the emigrants, unaccustomed to such a life, could not long exist. The majority were people of refinement and education, many of them wealthy ; they brought considerable property with them, as they had been promised Government patronage, and had hopes that the new city would, perhaps, be the scat of Government. In this they were disappointed ; it was made a military station, a garrison town, 3000 troops being after a time stationed there. For a time the place flourished, but the dreary and lonely surroundings soon pressed fatally on the settlers. One by one they gradually left the place, many died, others settled in different parts of the Province or returned to the States, the town fell into decay, the military were withdrawn to Halifax, so that in the course of twenty years but the ruins and remains of this most promising settlement were left to the few survivors of a most ambitious undertaking.

In 1794 the Duke of Kent, father of her Majesty, was appointed Commander-in-chief of the Forces in Nova Scotia. He resided at Halifax, which by this date had grown to a strong garrison town, at times four and five regiments being stationed in the town and province. He was a martinet of the old school, and most strict disciplinarian. His hobby was to keep the large force under him at work, and by the exercise of this commendable idea he largely benefited the Province. Under his directions, seconded by the Government, he had roads constructed around Halifax and vicinity, and a military post-road to Annapolis in the western part of the Province. These roads proved of great value in helping to open up the country to immigrants, and contributed greatly to the comfort of the colony. His residence on Bedford Basin, near Halifax, still called the “Prince’s Lodge,” was most superbly equipped and furnished. For several years it was the centre of British America for elegant society and unbounded hospitality; and in after years lie declared to his friends that the happiest days of his lite were spent in the lodge he had erected on Bedford Basin while in command of Halifax.

In 1796, 500 Maroons, native Caribs of Jamaica, arrived at Halifax and remained there four years. They were exiled to Nova Scotia, as they had proved of vast trouble to Jamaica, burning sugar plantations and murdering the slaves, who were a different race from themselves. They proved of no service to Nova Scotia, and in 1 800 they were deported to Sierra Leone, West Coast of Africa. There they scattered, and most of them became slave-catchers for the Arab traders. In the course of twenty-five years they helped to depopulate a broad swath across Africa to the eastern coast. Courageous and muscular, they were natural-born fighters, and the little knowledge they had acquired of civilisation appeared to have the effect of increasing their fiendish propensities. They became a terror to the part of Africa they were located in. In 1841 a small remnant of them in their old aero returned to Jamaica; the majority had fallen in battle. The explanation given for sending these demons in human shape to Nova Scotia was, that it was hoped the severe winters of the Province would have soon finished them, but their toughness and health stood four years’ strain, till they had to be removed for the welfare of Nova Scotia to Sierra Leone.

From 1800 to 1830 several governors of the Province during that time deserve notice, one in particular, a man of advanced ideas, Earl Dalhousie. He was a good administrator, encouraged agriculture, founded a college which is to-day the leading university in the maritime provinces, and in every way proved himself worthy of the trust given him. James Kempt, Sir Peregrine Maitland, and Sir Colin Campbell, all tried soldiers, also gave good satisfaction as governors and friends of the people. Under Lord Falkland’s administration the battle for ri<jlit. and responsible government, awis fought out and finally won by the exertions of the patriot Joseph Howe, who during a long life was ever in the van, leading on the progress of Nova Scotia. Several governors of lesser note followed Falkland, until 1867, when, Britain encouraging the movement for confederating the various provinces in North America under one Central Government, the matter was after considerable agitation consummated, and Nova Scotia became part of the Dominion of Canada. Having thus briefly touched upon the leading events in the history of the Province, from the earliest time to the date when Nova Scotia became absorbed into the Dominion, I will now give an outline of the position, appearance, climate, and resources of the Province.

Nova Scotia, the most eastern province of the Dominion, and nearest Great Britain, is situated between 43° and 47° north latitude, and 6oc and 70° west longitude, and consists of a peninsula connected by a narrow isthmus writh New Brunswick and the rest of the American Continent. Its area is about 300 miles in length and 80 to 100 in breadth. The island of Cape Breton, forming the eastern part of the Province, is separated by a narrow channel one mile wide, called the Strait of Canso. The shores of Nova Scotia, not including Cape Breton, which will be described separately, are everywhere indented with excellent harbours, there being more than double the number capable of accommodating ships of the largest class than on the entire eastern seaboard of the United States from Maine to Mexico. No part of the Province is more than thirty miles from navigable waters. Between Halifax and the eastern extremity of the Province are twenty-six excellent ports, twelve capable of accommodating ships of the line, the remainder with capacity to shelter fair-sized merchantmen, while west of Halifax are fifteen ports and harbours, several of magnificent capacity and beauty. Prominent beyond all others in Nova Scotia or North America, stands Halifax Harbour, easy of access, deep, free from rocks or reefs, and sufficiently capacious to contain the United navies of Britain, France, America, and Germany, and still have anchorage to spare. The value of this magnificent landlocked harbour to Britain and the Dominion, its vast extent and situation as the eastern outlet of British North America, cannot be overestimated.

It is the naval station for Britain’s North American fleet, and at times from ten to fifteen vessels are anchored at the dockyard. In extent Nova Scotia contains about 20,000 square miles. Its scenery is varied and beautiful; the surface of the country is generally undulating, its hills seldom exceeding 600 feet. The most remarkable cliffs on its coast are Aspotogan on the south side, and Blomidon on the Bay of Fundy, each from 600 to 700 feet in height. Its numerous lakes, rivers, and harbours, its broad bays studded with islands, its many brooks and streams, relieve by their endless variety, and embellish a country from its variety of scenes naturally picturesque. The Bay of Fundy which washes with its mighty tide the western counties of the Province, deserves a passing notice. Its tide has a rise and fall of 60 feet; the impetuosity of the current is remarkable. The upper part of the bay, called the Basin of Minas, is a large reservoir, which receives the waters of eleven rivers; from thence they escape between Cape Blomidon and Cape Split toward the ocean. This great current has been a study for scientists for the past three hundred years. Humboldt spent two summers on its shores, on his return from South America, in investigation and close observation. The change of air produced by these rapid currents is conducive to health, and renders the air in that part of Nova Scotia, loaded as it is with ozone, salubrious and agreeable. The great daily ebb of this tide makes the draining of dykes and meadows attended with ease. Many thousand acres of dyked lands are on this bay. Alluvial washings made by the deposits of the tides and dyked, nothing can exceed it in fertility. The scenery of the Bay of Fundy is picturesque and varied, here by the abrupt cliff with its woody summit, there by the verdant meadow 01* by the cheerful scenes of civilisation. The beautiful succession of valleys bordering the bay are protected in the background by ranges of hills, which keep the fogs which at times envelop the coast from coming over, thus sheltering and protecting the interior, and giving a higher temperature than might be expected in the latitude. The Annapolis, the great fruit-producing valley of Nova Scotia, owes much of its value and fertility to this fortunate natural peculiarity. In the various counties of the Province, eighteen in number, are to be found the most lovely pastoral scenes of beauty and fertility, which cannot be matched in any other of the dominions of Great Britain. Every county has some production or advantage peculiar to itself; in some the soil, in others the minerals, in others the timber products; fruit appears to yield well everywhere, and is rapidly making Nova Scotia known as one of the best fruit-producing countries on the globe. And here I may have a word as to climate. It is well suited to all who are even in moderate health. It is healthy and pleasant. The sky is serene the greater part of the year. The air temperate, and there very seldom occurs a day too hot or too cold for travelling; agreeable clear weather is the rule. The ground throughout the Province is generally covered with snow from 25th December to 10th March. Springs are backward, but when vegetation commences it is very rapid. The summer heat is moderate and regular. The autumns are beautiful, the temperature similar to that of May, a fine clear elastic air, which gives a fine tone to the system and cheerfulness to the spirits. The autumn weather continues sometimes until first week in December, with this change only, that as the season advances the air at night becomes colder. The extreme cold experienced in every other part of the Dominion is unknown in Nova Scotia; its- insular position may account for this. The proximity of the Gulf Stream is at times thought to have something to do with it, but it is too far away from the nearest point of Nova Scotia to make any appreciable difference in the temperature. The soil, like that of England, is varied, and the most of it easy of cultivation. The valleys of the Annapolis, Cumberland, and Colchester districts are highly cultivated, and compare favourably with the best lands of Ontario or Quebec. Digby, Hants and King’s, Pictou and Antigonish counties are all fruit producers—but not to the same extent as Annapolis county—are famed for their root and grain crops, and all produce hay of the finest quality. The soil is good, as the land in its natural state is covered with timber and shrubs in great variety. There is abundance of good pasture in every county, and a vast quantity of stock horses, sheep, and cattle are raised with very little expense. In parts of the Province sheep are pastured out most of the winter, and in many places the entire year, without shelter. For all the fruits of the temperate zone the soil and climate of Nova Scotia are favourable. Apples, peaches, plums, cherries, and the smaller fruits and berries, tomatoes, grapes, and vegetables of the gourd kind all grow, and give large yields with but little attention. The apples of Nova Scotia are rapidly becoming famous; the soil appears particularly fitted for the production of this fruit. In 1896, 500,000 barrels were raised, and the profits of the business are attracting the attention of dealers in Europe. An orchard of from one to twenty acres is now attached to almost every farm, and the ease with which they are cultivated makes the area the most profitable of the farm’s production. The fisheries of Nova Scotia are among the finest and most profitable in the world. They are practically inexhaustible. The preservation of these valuable possessions, so coveted by our American neighbours, their own long since completely exhausted, led of late years to treaties being made whereby the limit of fishing outside a three-mile distance from the coast is strictly adhered to. The total value of the last year’s fishing was nearly £2,000,000 sterling, and the number of men employed, partly farmers and partly fishermen, about 10,000. The West Indies and South America are the principal markets for export, and the fish and lumber sent to these distant points form a large portion of the earnings of the Province. Another valuable item is the production of lumber. As the lands become cultivated the value of the forests diminishes; but the Province still contains large tracks of woodland, which produce timber for ship-building and for manufacturing into lumber. Millions of feet  of pine, spruce, and hemlock deals, scantling, and staves are annually shipped to the United States and Europe. Oak, elm, beech, birch, ash, spruce, all grow to great size, and 'in many parts of Nova Scotia in apparently undiminished quantity.

The mineral resources of Nova Scotia are valuable, and it is one of the few countries which have workable deposits of coal, iron, and gold side by side. Nearly all the commercial ores are found in parts of the Province, but coal and iron, the most valuable minerals any country can be blessed with, are in vast quantities, and, what is very important, are in close contiguity to each other. There arc five large independent coalfields in Nova Scotia, one at Piotou, spreading over an area of 120 square miles; one at Cumberland, another at Londonderry; one at Sydney, and another in Inverness county. Those vast fields are only partially worked. The Sydney coal-field, the most eastern, extends over an area of 200 square miles. The total area of coal in Nova Scotia is 4000 square miles, with a total available working of 40 billion tons. This gives a faint idea of the vast coal resources of the Province. The output in 1897 was only 3,000,000 tons. The iron deposits, although extensive, are only worked at Londonderry, Torbrook, and Springville. Gypsum is found in nearly every county; deposits are large, but only partially worked; 120,000 tons were shipped in 1897. The gold-fields are valuable, and are scattered over the Province; with but mere scratching, during the past twenty-five years, they have produced £2,000,000 sterling.

In the foregoing references to appearance, climate, soil, and productions of the Province, I have with the exception of coal deposits designedly omitted Capo Breton, which forms the eastern extremity of Nova Scotia. This grand island deserves a separate chapter. It was, sometime after the collapse of French power in 1758, erected into a separate province, and so continued from 1780 to 1820, when it was incorporated with Nova Scotia. This island is 100 miles in length and 80 in breadth. Its hills are higher, its scenery grander than the Nova Scotian mainland. It possesses one of the most beautiful inland seas in the world, the far-famed Bras d’Or Lake. In the extreme north of the island the Cape North range of mountains tower aloft from the seaboard in sublime majesty. The Sugar-Loaf, the highest peak of the range, is the Prima Vista of Cabot, the spot upon which his eye first rested when he discovered the continent of America four centuries ago. This peak is the sentinel of the Gulf of St. Lawrence. From its top on a fine day one of the grandest scenes of beauty imaginable is unfolded that ever kindled the enthusiasm of man. Across the Gulf, fifty miles away, can be seen Cape Ray and the red cliffs of Newfoundland. In mid-dislance St. Paul’s Island, the graveyard of the North Atlantic, its grim battlemented cliffs, frowning and dark, well in keeping with its terrible record of wreck and horror. To the left the Magdalen Islands can be faintly traced on the horizon, thence the coast from the Cape Rouge hills to Cheticamp. Turning around, the great extent of Cape Breton is unveiled from Sydney Harbour to Louisburg, while the mighty form of Cape Smokey stands boldly out, the “white veils of the cliffs” in shadowy splendour in the background. Beneath is Aspey Bay, with its three harbours and peerless beaches; and White Point, with its famed bay, looks bright as steel. Away in the front, Cape Dauphin, and St. Ann’s; all forming a scene of wild and majestic beauty not to be matched on the broad continent of America. The wonderful combination of sea and sky, island and lake, ocean and mountain, forest and clearings, is to the beholder a revelation of enchanting beauty. The occupation of the island by the French has already been referred to; few traces of them remain, except in the harbours, bays, and coves on the north and east coast, which still show where once a busy population carried on their work. Several flourishing towns, with a bright, energetic look about them, are scattered over the island. Among them Louisburg, now a great shipping port, is again coming to the front; great wharves and piers, electric lights, and a fleet of vessels loading coal, a splendid line of railway connecting it with the continent, an incorporated city with all the improvements of the age, now takes the place of the silent ghosts of ruin and decay that so long marked the site of Franco’s once proud military stronghold. Other towns such as Sydney, St. Peter’s, Arichat, South Sydney, Mabou, and Port Hood, Chitcamp, Eastern Harbour, and Hastings, all proclaim the fact that a new era has set in for Cape Breton. Another people, thrifty and progressive, are the leading race in the island, descendants of the hardy Scotchmen who founded their homes in the island about a century ago. Shoals of tourists visit the island every summer, to enjoy the beauty of the country, its great diversity of scene, and its balmy air. The island contains large coal-fields, gypsum, silver, and iron, and its area of 2000 square miles contains the finest arable land in the Dominion. Joined with all these advantages are good roads, railways, telegraphs, and all the modern advantages of civilisation. The island only requires to be better known to be appreciated; its great want at present is good immigrants. Farms partially cleared can be had at very reasonable rates, the necessaries of life are easily had, prosperity awaits the immigrant who will go to work with a will, and success is certain.

The population of Nova Scotia, including Cape Breton, is about 500,000, consisting of English, Scotch, Irish, French, and German, a few thousand negroes, a few Jews, and about 1200 Indians of the Micmac tribe. The remnants of a once powerful and aggressive people, they live on lands reserved by Government for them, are partly supported by the people, and are rapidly disappearing. This mixed population in Nova Scotia live happily together, every year making rapid advance upward in the social scale. It may not be generally known that Nova Scotians have, all over the Dominion and the United States, a name identifying them among and from all other Canadians. They arc called “Blue Noses.” The name came originally from the Loyalists who left the revolting colonies in 1776. As Loyalists they were termed “True Blues”; after a while the rebels called them “Blue Noses.” Originally a name of contempt, it became a most honourable designation, and to-day, to say to a native of Nova Scotia “ You are a Blue Nose,” is something flattering and inspiring indeed. The inhabitants of the various Provinces of the Dominion differ greatly in manner, according to their situation, some being agricultural, others commercial, and others partaking of the nature of both. But the Nova Scotian is away ahead of the above; he is generally a man of versatile manner and varied attainments. He will be found cultivating a farm, building a vessel at the same time, able to catch a cargo of fish and cure it, navigate his vessel and cargo to the West Indies and dispose of it, take a return ear of suirar or molasses to some distant port and sell it 011 his return home; tiring of the sea, lie will change his occupation, teach a school, keep shop, take an active part in politics, try, and generally succeeds, in getting into the local legislature, is great on public speaking—the number of public orators in the country districts is large. He has been known for generations for being all things by turns but nothing long, and in some marvellous way acquires or turns to a great diversity of trades and occupations, all of which he knows a <a*eat deal about. His versatile and original turn of expression make him remarkable among the other colonists in the Dominion.

Nova Scotia, now part and parcel of the Dominion of Canada, sends 20 members to the Federal Parliament, and is represented by 10 members in the Senate. Has also a Local Parliament of 38 members, a Legislative Council of 21 members, an Executive Council of 1 o members; and has, in addition to all these representatives, a perfect scheme of municipal government in operation in the 18 counties. The machinery of Government would almost seem too heavy for a small province, but it seems to satisfy the inhabitants. The governor is appointed by the Government of the day; when his term of office expires at the end of five years, he steps down and returns to business again. The governors are taken from the province to which they belong, and as a rule give great satisfaction. The Federal Parliament deals with the larger matters of the Dominion—the Duties, “Grants to Railways," the Judiciary, &c.—while the Local House has under its jurisdiction the care of the Schools, the Public Roads and Bridges, the Local Railways, Royalties, and Minerals owned by the Province. Each province has a local subsidy for expenses and government. The judges, custom-house and post-office officials, are paid by the Federal Government. The system gives every satisfaction. Members of the Federal and Local Houses are elected for a term of five years, or until the House is dissolved, which an adverse vote in either House may occasion at any time. The system of trial by jury prevails. In the chief towns and cities are stipendiary magistrates, who sit daily for the hearing of ordinary police cases. The counties and townships have local councils, which regulate the taxation for roads, schools, and other purposes, so that every man directly votes for the taxes he is called upon to pay. These necessary expenses are aided by grants from the local government to the various districts. The system of government is most satisfactory, and all have fair-play in Nova Scotia. Education has been well attended to. King’s College, Windsor, was founded over a century ago, and has sent out a vast body of educated men, who, in their various generations, have rendered great service to the Province. Dalhousie University at Halifax, founded in 1820, is now the leading educational centre for the maritime provinces. Public teachers are trained at a splendidly equipped Normal School at public expense. Free education is furnished all over the Province. This accounts for the hosts of writers and literary talent in Nova Scotia. Among them some have achieved world-wide fame—Haliburton, Howe, Grant, and Young, lead in the van; then follow a throng of poets, writers, and journalists, such as Griffin, Bourinot, Stewart, and Longlcy, who have all done credit to the Province. Nova Scotians have everywhere excelled as public speakers and debaters, and to-day the Nova Scotian representatives in the Federal House are considered the best debaters in the Dominion.

Halifax, the capital of Nova Scotia, and the seat of local government, is a well-built town situated on the noble harbour already described. It contains 50,000 inhabitants, and has all the latest and best improvements that wealth and science furnish to-day. It has capital public schools, is the seat of a university, is governed by a mayor and eighteen aldermen, is lighted by electricity, has electric tram-roads, dry docks, telephones, and telegraph and cable communication with the world. It is one of the oldest cities in the Dominion. Wealth is well distributed; no millionaires, but a great middling educated class, thrifty and comfortable. The societies are numerous, one of which, the North British Society, the oldest charitable national institution in Canada, is wealthy and useful. In Halifax every man has a chance, religion is respected, and freedom is enjoyed by all. Few places on the globe have the privileges and advantages that Halifax possesses. .The Province east and west contains a number of small cities and shire towns, and each of the eighteen counties has its central head-quarters. Most of these towns are incorporated and furnished with all the latest improvements of modern life. Splendid roads permeate the Province in all directions, and the people generally enjoy a degree of comfort not found in older countries. Taxes are light, with good markets for all surplus produce raised by the settlers. The early troubles of a new colony have passed away.

Nova Scotia is an old colony with all the advantages of experience. The wonderful mineral wealth of the Province, its noble harbours, its fertile soil, its extensive fisheries, its proximity to Europe, its water power, its temperate climate, and its possession of the winter port of the vast Canadian Pacific system to the Pacific, all indicate Nova Scotia as destined to achieve her ambition for extended commerce, and to be the seat of great manufactures, for wielding a great power not only in the Dominion but over the entire American continent. With an honest pride in the resources of Nova Scotia, I can say, no emigrant from Britain should pass this noble Province by when seeking a home on the other side of the Atlantic, for in Nova Scotia all will be found that goes toward making life pleasant. Good laws, a good climate, the same flag he has always lived under, all depending upon his own rational exertions and industry, without which, soil, climate, and social conditions cannot count in the battle before him. Nova Scotia should have 1,000,000 settlers from the overcrowded fatherland Britain. Good homes await all who go to this Province—health, comfort, and happiness, in this most favoured spot of England’s possession on the broad continent of America.


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