History Lec#3 Jan.11/10
The “Loyalty Election” of 1891
The Canadian federal election was held on March 5 to elect the members of the
Canadian House of Commons of the 7th Parliament of Canada.
Main Issue: - Macdonald’s National Policy (policy of protective tariffs)
-Liberals(Wilfrid Laurier) supported reciprocity/free trade
-Also, the Farrer Pamphlet
The election was won by the Conservative Party by Sir John A. Macdonald. It was a
close election & Macdonald campaigned hard.
However, Macdonald passed away a few months after the election.
A great way of sadness went through the country. People think the future is very
uncertain without him. A period of mourning went through weeks.
(Macdonald was mostly good, but somewhat corrupt. But, what is certain is that on
one could replace him.)
*Farrer Pamphlet* (because of this pamphlet, Macdonald slightly won the election)
[A pamphlet written by Farrer to advise the US on how to pressure Canada into union]
Edward Farrer was a Journalist. In the early 1890, the Globe and other papers
accused him of conspiring(??) with the committee of the United States Senate on
relations with Canada by supporting research material.
Farrer was given the task of promoting Liberal’s policy of unrestricted reciprocity
(free trade). He apparently implied that the Liberal Party was sympathetic to political
More than 2000 people attended the election campaign of 1891. During the
campaign, Macdonald exposed the pamphlet as evidence of the Liberal Party’s
“disloyalty and accused the Liberal Party of veiled treason.
Farrer accepted the responsibility for the pamphlet, but denied that it had any
connection with the Liberal party.
Conservative Prime Ministers 1891~1896
When Sir John A. Macdonald passed away, Governor General Lord Stanley of Preston
called on John Thompson to form a government, but he declined. Thompson
*Sir John Abbott* (3rd PM of Canada)
Sir John Abbott supported Thompson to succeed, but because of the religious
prejudice against the Roman Catholic Thompson, who also converted at his marriage,
made it politically untenable(?????).
Therefore, Abbott reluctantly(????) accepted the plea of the divided Conservative
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History Lec#3 Jan.11/10
party that he should lead the government.
Sir John Abbott spent 7 months in the office.
One year into his time as PM, he tried to turn his office over to Thompson.
However it was rejected due to religion reasons again.
In 1892, Abbott’s health failed because of brain cancer, and finally Thompson
became the Prime Minister.
*Sir John Thompson* (4th Canadian PM)
Thompson was originally the best man to become the PM after Macdonald. However,
he couldn’t. The reason is because he switched religion, in order to get married to his
wife, which is definitely unacceptable by that time.
Sir John Sparrow David Thompson was a Canadian Lawyer, judge, politician and
university professor. He was the first Roman Catholic who become the PM of Canada.
Thompson became the Minister of Justice in September 1885. By that time, The Riel
crisis was on, as the new minister of justice, Thompson had the responsibility to solve
Although Thompson was ill with kidney stone by that time, he made a speech
arguing that anyone who encouraged aboriginal Canadians to act against the state
could not escape justice. This speech had popularized him and led him to become a
leading member of the Conservative government.
For the Manitoba Schools question, Thompson hoped there would be a legal way to
solve it and asked for help from the JCPC. The JCPC ruled it legal to extinguish the
school system because Manitoba was not part of the federation.
Thompson came very close to bringing Newfoundland into Confederation. However,
this was not achieved until 1949.
Other concerns: reduction of tariffs, school act in Manitoba and North West
Territories, of which the North West schooling problem was resolved to Thompson’s
liking. (He did not live to see the solution of the Manitoba school problem.)
Thompson had been the MP of Canada for 2 years.
He died suddenly from a heart attack at age of 49 on December 12,1894 at Windsor
Castle where Queen Victoria had just made him a member of her Privy council.
Detail: Queen Victoria invited for lunch, before the lunch he didn’t feel very well,
so he went out and took some brandy. When he got back, he died on the table. By that
time, he was significantly overweight and had always pushed himself very hard at
*Sir Mackenzie Bowell* (5th Canadian PM)
[the “smartest man” (not a compliment)]
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After Thompson’s death, many expected the Governor General, Lord Aberdeen,
to invite Tupper to return to Canada to become the prime minister. However, the
governor general disliked Tupper and asked the most senior Cabinet minister
Mackenzie who should be the next prime minister. Mackenzie mistakenly thought the
Governor General ask him to become the next prime minister and happily accepted
As the PM of Canada, Mackenzie also faced the Manitoba Schools Question. The
issue had divided the country, the government, even Bowell’s Cabinet.
Because of Bowell’s inability, his Cabinet decided he was incompetent to lead.
Seven of the ministers resigned in order to force him step down. Although Bowell
called them “a nest of traitors”, he was agreed to step down.
Then, Tupper had been recalled to replace Bowell.
*Sir Charles Tupper* (6th PM of Canada)
[Tupper was the Canadian High Commissioner to the United Kingdom. He served the
shortest term in office(69 days) ]
The major problem facing Tupper is also the Manitoba School question, which
had also bitterly divided the conservative party.
On Jan 15th ,Tupper became the Secretary of State for Canada with the
understanding that he would become the PM following the dissolution of the 7th
On Feb 4, 1896, Tupper was elected to the 7th Canadian Parliament as the de
facto, prime minister. However, legally Bowell was still the PM.
On the Manitoba School’s Question, Tupper’s position was that French Catholics
had been promised the right to separate state-funded French-language Catholic
schools in the Manitoba Act of 1870. Even though he was personally opposed of this
act, but he think the Canadian government should keep the promises. Therefore, he
opposed McCarthy’s Manitoba Schools Act. He maintained his position even when
the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council supported the Schools Act.
In 1895, JCPC ruled that the Canadian federal government could pass remedial
legislation to overrule the Manitoba Schools Act. Thus, in 1896, Tupper introduced
remedial legislation in the House of Commons. The bill was filibustered(??) by
McCarthy and Wilfrid which resulted in abandon and dissolution.
Wilfrid felt supporting the legislation would be a bad back lash on the French.
Therefore, he answered “sunny ways” which means if we blow wind people will put
their clothes closer to them, but if we put out the sun, people will took off their
Throughout the 1896 election campaign, Tupper argued that real issue of the
election was the future of Canadian industry. But, the Conservatives was bitterly
divided over the Manitoba Schools Question that wherever he spoke, he was faced
The election was centered on the Schools Question. The Liberals took advantage
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