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head; her feet jumped with joy; and she thus remained dancing before me—a raving maniac!
But volume after volume of dee,p black smoke rolling and rising from the windows of Montgomery's Tavern now attracted my attention. This great and lofty building, entirely constructed of timber and planks, was soon a mass of flames, whose long red tongues sometimes darted horizontally, as if revengefully to consume those who had created them, and then flared high above the roof.
As we sat on our horses the heat was intense; and while the conflagration was the subject of joy and triumph to the gallant spirits that immediately surrounded it, it was a lurid telegraph intimating to many an anxious and aching heart at Toronto the joyful intelligence that the yeomen and farmers of Upper Canada had triumphed over their perfidious enemy, "responsible government."
As mankind, in every region of the globe, are prone to exaggerate the importance of every little event in which they themselves happen to have been engaged, it would only be natural if I were to follow this course as regards the events I have just detailed. Figures, however, as well as facts, fortunately prevent me from doing so.
The whole force which Mr. McKenzie and his assistant, Dr. Eolph, a practising midwife, were enabled to collect amounted only to 500 men.
Now at this moment the population of Upper Canada was 450,000; Toronto contained 10,000; and the Home District 60,000.
On the fourth day after the outbreak, such numbers of loyal men were flocking towards Toronto from all directions that I was obliged to publish placards throughout the province, announcing I had no occasion for their services; and on the seventh day after the outbreak I issued a general order, placing (besides Her Majesty's troops, who had already departed) the militia of seven counties of Upper Canada at the disposal of Sir John Colborne for the defence of the Lower Province.
I mention these facts to prove that the advocates of "responsible government" had physically been defeated as completely as their demand had, several months ago, been morally defeated throughout the Province at the hustings.
THE BRITISH FLAG.
On my arrival at Toronto, people from all parts of the Province, propelled by a variety of feelings they could not control, were seen centripedally riding, driving, or walking towards Government House. One, in pure English, described to me the astonishing luxuriance of the western district; another, in a strong Irish brogue, the native beauty of Lake Simcoe; another, in broad Scotch, explained to me the value of the timber trade on the Ottawa; one confidently assured me that in his district there were veins of coal,—another hinted at indications of copper,—one raved about a fishery,—another was in raptures about the college,—some described to me Lakes Huron, Erie, and Ontario,—several the Falls of Niagara,—all praised the climate; "and yet," said I to myself, as absorbed in deep melancholy I imperfectly listened to their descriptions in detail, "and yet how is it that in the foreground of this splendid picture. I can no where see the British Flag? Except by its powerful influence, how can I, inexperienced and unsupported, expect to stand against the difficulties which are about to assail me? Except by its eloquence, how can I advocate the
glorious institutions of our country? Except under its blessing, how can I even hope to prosper? An admiral might as well attempt to fight a ship without a pennant, or. to go to sea in a ship without a bottom, as that I, with nothing to look up to, and nothing to die under, should vainly undertake to govern Canada from a house with nothing on its roof to greet the -winds of heaven but stacks of reeking chimneys."
In building, I know quite well it is usual to commence by laying what is vulgarly called the foundation stone; however, under the feelings I have but faintly described, I determined that I would begin to build my political edifice from the top, and accordingly in due time there appeared on the roof of Government House, first, half a dozen workmen mysteriously hammering away, as if at their own shins; then, as if it had started up by magic, or like a mushroom had risen in the night, a tall straight staff wearing a small foraging cap on its head appeared; and lastly, an artillery-man, in his blue jacket and red cuffs, was seen, with extended arms, to haul up, hand over head, and to leave behind him, joyfully fluttering in the wind, the British Flag.
What were my own feelings when 1 first beheld this guardian angel hovering over my head I had rather not divulge, but the sensation it created throughout the Province I need not fear to describe. "There's no mistaking what that means!" exclaimed an old Canadian colonel of militia, whe happened to be standing, with a group of his comrades, at the moment the artillery-man finished his job. "Now what's the use of that, I should just like to know?" muttered a well-known supporter of republican principles: however, the latter observation was but an exception to the rule, for the truth is, that the sight of the British Flag extinguished rather than excited all narrow jealousies, all angry feelings, all party distinctions, all provincial animosities. Its glorious history rushed through the mind and memory to the heart of almost every one who beheld it.
The Irish Catholic, the Orangeman, the Scotcn Presbyterian, the Methodist, the English reformer, the voters for ballot, for universal suffrage, for responsible government, or, in other terms, for "no Governor," for liberty and equality, and for other theoretical nonsense they did not clearly understand, as if, by mutual consent, forgot their differences as they gazed together with fraternal affection upon what all alike claimed as their common property, their common wealth, their common parent; and, while as if rejoicing at the sight of its congregation, the hallowed emblem fluttered over their heads—it told them they were the children of one family—it admonished them to love one another—it bade them fear nothing but God, honour their sovereign, and obey their own laws. From sunrise till sunset this "bit of bunting" was constantly, as from a pulpit, addressing itself to the good feelings of all who beheld it, and especially to the members of both