Search just our sites by using our customised site search engine

Click here to get a Printer Friendly PageSmiley

Click here to learn more about MyHeritage and get free genealogy resources

The MacLeod Times Newspaper

September 8th, 1921 (pdf)

Here is an article from this edition...


EDINBURGH, Scotland, Sept, 8.— The Canadian prime minister, Arthur Meighen, fulfilled a number of engagements in Edinburgh before his departure for the Dominion. He received the freedom of the capital city and had bestowed upon him the honorary degree of Doctor of Laws of Edinburgh University.

At the freedom ceremony Baillie Barrie, the acting chief magistrate, said the Corporation of the citizens of Edinburgh were proud to avail themselves of the opportunity of admitting to their burgess roll one who had played so prominent a part in the affairs of the great Dimonion of Canada. They were apt to think of Canada’s sons as being of the old pioneer type, but while the old time qualities of endurance and grit were still present, they must not forget the studious and acute intelligence and the deep culture which were also present in the vast continent, and in Mr. Meighen Canada had an outstanding personality among the prime ministers of the Empire.

The wonderful progress and development of Canada, the speaker said, formed one of the romances in the history of the Empire. Scotsmen had played a great part in the development of Canada, and it was an interesting fact to Scotsmen that the first two prime ministers were Scots— Sir John Macdonald and Sir Alexander Mackenzie. Billie Barrie said they were proud of the record of Scottish people in the building up of the Dominion, and he instanced Lord Strathcona and Lord Mount Stephen as men who had done much to open up and develop the great agricultural and mineral wealth of the country.

Edinburgh a Real Mecca

Mr. Meighen, in reply, said that across in Canada Edinburgh was regarded as one of the real Meccas oi tho world, as one of the few places that had both a brilliant present and a fascinating past. It was difficult for him to describe how citizens in a far-off land looked upon the historical places of these citizens. As a citizen of Canada, even though his ancestors had never been traced east of the Irish Sea, he knew how to appreciate tho obligation Canada owed to Scotland. From these rugged hills Canada had drawn unnumbered thousands of the most rugged of her men, and from Scotland’s towns and countryside they had gathered an equal stream of talented and noble women.

They would still, of course, have had a Canada, and a fine Canada, if they had never had immigration, but it would not have been a Canada such as they had today; it would not have teen so strong; it would not have been so British. As a citizen of the Empire, too, he was glad that there was a Scotland. Under every sky Scotsmen had played their part, giving the world an illustration of how to combine devotion to peace with dauntlessncss in war.

Honor to His Country

To realize at last his long-deferred hope of seeing Edinburgh. Mr. Meighen said, was a peculiar pleasure in itself, but to be admitted at the same time as a freeman in such circumstances of cordiality and ancient dignity was a distinction so great that even pleasure was submerged in gratitude and pride. He thanked them with deep sincerity for the kindness they hnd shown to him and the honor they had done to his country.

At the subsequent laureation ceremony which took place at the university, the vice-chancellor, Sir Alfred Ewing, presided over the proceedings, tn presenting Mr. Meighen for the honorary degree of LL.D., Professor MacKintosh said that town and gown joined hands that day in doing the honors of the Scottish capital to n distinguished visitor from Overseas and Canada’s able representative at the imperial conference. While he represented the oldest of the dominions, Mr. Meighen was the youngest of the prime ministers of the Empire.

The principal, having performed the capping ceremony, said the links between the mother country and the dominions were bonds of sentiment and affection, bonds which they believed could never be broken, possessing a far greater potency than could be possessed by anything that could be formulated, and possessing only infinitely greater promise for the future.

Canada’s Debt to Pioneers

In his reply Mr. Meighen said that more perhaps than any other race the Scottish men and women of early days in Canada set their hearts on education, and it was the simple truth to say that whatever of moral and intellectual virility Canada enjoyed, she owed to severe self-discipline and the passion for education of her pioneers. The early growth of the Canadian universities had its explanation in that fact.

Even before Canada received her present political institutions, there were established several universities modeled very much after those in the mother country. The one he called his own owed its discipline to the energy and devotion to learning of Scotsman. Compared with Edinburgh University, its tradition was short, but when one remembered that the British flag had flown over Canada for only 16O years, a university with a charter a century old was no longer juvenile. It had grown to extraordinary dimensions and was, if measured by the number of students within its pale, the largest in the world.

He hoped the glamour of the practical would never be allowed to obscure the lofty but fundamental purpose of every seat of learning, the cultivation of the understanding and the purifying ot taste. Only in that way could they cause the light to 1 slune, only in that way could they diffuse those better things that interest, invigorate, inspire, sustain, comfort in adversity, and temper in triumph; only in that way could they contribute to the production of those finer fruits of literature and art by which people were so wont to judge the human standard of a nation, and which survived without concern of time long after the nation itself had passed away.

Return to our Scottish History Page


This comment system requires you to be logged in through either a Disqus account or an account you already have with Google, Twitter, Facebook or Yahoo. In the event you don't have an account with any of these companies then you can create an account with Disqus. All comments are moderated so they won't display until the moderator has approved your comment.

comments powered by Disqus