The Irish in Canada: The Importation of Fenianism – An address by Thomas D’Arcy McGee delivered before the St. Patrick’s Society, January 11th, 1865

[Ed. Reflecting on the advantages the Irish-Canadian community enjoys in Canada with civil and religious liberty, McGee denies the spread of Fenianism in Montreal, and calls upon the community to root it out and resist its spread: “establish at once, for your own sakes – for the country’s sake – a cordon sanitaire around your… Continue reading The Irish in Canada: The Importation of Fenianism – An address by Thomas D’Arcy McGee delivered before the St. Patrick’s Society, January 11th, 1865

The Cause of the Quebec Conference – Speech by Thomas D’Arcy McGee at the Déjeûner given to the members of the Quebec Conference, October 29th, 1864

[Ed: McGee tells Quebec Conference delegates to look around – and they will find “reasons as thick as blackberries” for a union of the provinces: “This was not a time for questions about creeds, or origins, or races, but a time either to save or ruin British North America.” Canadians, he says, are building their… Continue reading The Cause of the Quebec Conference – Speech by Thomas D’Arcy McGee at the Déjeûner given to the members of the Quebec Conference, October 29th, 1864

Celebrating the Poet of Confederation: Bob Rae for Inside Policy

Thomas D’Arcy McGee expressed the feelings and emotions that lay behind the Confederation project, writes Bob Rae. By Bob Rae, July 1, 2017 Thomas D’Arcy McGee can rightly be called the “poet of Confederation.” His life, cut short by an assassin’s bullet, was full of change and chaos, but as a member of both the… Continue reading Celebrating the Poet of Confederation: Bob Rae for Inside Policy

The Common Interests of British North America – Address by Thomas D’Arcy McGee delivered at the Temperance Hall, July 21st, 1863

[Ed: McGee’s call for union at Halifax, in the presence of Charles Tupper and Joseph Howe, outlining arguments he hopes “will be audible, within a month, to the farthest western settler who hears the wolf bark by night beyond Lake Huron.” Surveying the provinces’ vast geography and wealth of resources, McGee reviews the principle arguments… Continue reading The Common Interests of British North America – Address by Thomas D’Arcy McGee delivered at the Temperance Hall, July 21st, 1863

American Relations and Canadian Duties – Address by Thomas D’Arcy McGee to the Irish Protestant Benevolent Society, May 10, 1862

[Ed: With the U.S. Civil War raging to the south, McGee warns Canadians that the guns of Fort Sumter had a message for us – the urgent need to form and defend a new “Canadian nationality, not French-Canadian, nor British-Canadian, nor Irish-Canadian – patriotism rejects the prefix.” In a speech as eloquent as it is… Continue reading American Relations and Canadian Duties – Address by Thomas D’Arcy McGee to the Irish Protestant Benevolent Society, May 10, 1862

The Policy of Conciliation – Thomas D’Arcy McGee’s Remarks at Montreal, March 1861

[Ed. McGee meditates on the values of accommodation and forbearance required in a country of diverse origins and religious opinions, declaring “the one thing needed for making Canada the happiest of homes, is to rub down all sharp angles, and to remove those asperities which divide our people on questions of origin and religious profession.”… Continue reading The Policy of Conciliation – Thomas D’Arcy McGee’s Remarks at Montreal, March 1861

Speech by Thomas D’Arcy McGee – Constitutional Difficulties between Upper and Lower Canada (“The Shield of Achilles”) May 2, 1860

[Ed: McGee’s famous speech evoking the “Shield of Achilles,” his vision of a Canada from sea to sea, has inspired generations of Canadians. Less well known, it was delivered in a debate on constitutional changes seven years before Confederation, marking the high-tide in George Brown’s first drive to reform the constitution by federalizing the union… Continue reading Speech by Thomas D’Arcy McGee – Constitutional Difficulties between Upper and Lower Canada (“The Shield of Achilles”) May 2, 1860

Speech by Thomas D’Arcy McGee – The Double Majority, April 28, 1859

[Ed. In a speech denouncing the growing “spirit of disunion” in Canada, McGee criticizes the Cartier-Macdonald government for refusing to respond to Sandfield Macdonald’s motion in support of the so-called “Double Majority principle,”[1] one of several proposals for constitutional reform. Accusing the government of accepting the Union was “on its last legs,” McGee declares his hope… Continue reading Speech by Thomas D’Arcy McGee – The Double Majority, April 28, 1859

Thomas D’Arcy McGee: The Idealist: MLI Paper by Alastair Gillespie

Latest entry in the Confederation Series shows Thomas D’Arcy McGee was an advocate for the federal union of British North America, a defender of minority rights within Confederation, and an ardent opponent of religious and national sectarianism OTTAWA, June 8, 2017 – The Macdonald-Laurier Institute is pleased to showcase the fourth paper of its Confederation Series,… Continue reading Thomas D’Arcy McGee: The Idealist: MLI Paper by Alastair Gillespie

Thomas D’Arcy McGee, Speech in the Confederation Debates – February 9, 1865

Thomas D’Arcy McGee’s speech in the Confederation Debates developed the idea of Canada, and the meaning of Canada’s New Nationality, a phrase he may have himself coined. “What really keeps nations intact and apart?” McGee asked. “A principal. When I can hear our young men say as proudly, ‘our Federation’ or ‘our Country,’ or ‘our… Continue reading Thomas D’Arcy McGee, Speech in the Confederation Debates – February 9, 1865