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The following article is from:
Halifax Evening Express July 3, 1867, p. 2
In the pregnant language of one of the transparencies which appeared in a window of the residence of the Archbishop of Halifax on the 1st, "TO-DAY UNION MAKES A DOMINION OF A PROVINCE; DIGNIFIES OUR MANHOOD; EXPANDS OUR SYMPATHY; LINKS US WITH THIRTY FIVE HUNDRED THOUSAND FELLOW-SUBJECTS IN OUR OWN LAND; AND FIFTY MILLIONS OF HUMAN BEINGS NORTH OF PANAMA. GOD SAVE THE QUEEN."
The above text is a suggestive one and the great facts which it contains, the mighty future which it enunciates, must fill the heart of every true man with feelings of the deepest gratitude and pride, as well as confidence, in the greatness and the prosperity in store for us, if we have the wisdom to use aright the great opportunity which is now offered us. A few days ago we were a Province with a population, all told, barely equal to that of a second rate European city. We had the paraphernalia of Responsible Government, we were free as the air we breathed, our land had lying under it resources whose value is to be counted in tens of millions. With a bracing climate, a fertile soil, girdled almost by a sea teaming with inexhaustible treasure, with a geographical position equal to that of New York or Liverpool, with everything, indeed, but one, to give us place, and name, and influence, and prosperity; the absence of that one thing neutralized all the others. We had not room, or means enough, or men enough, to utilize and make best of these splendid resources. For 150 years we have been struggling onward, retarded at every step by our inherent weakness. We have lived politically unknown. Our Province; rich to repletion with natural resources stretched out its arms far into the broad Atlantic, as if inviting, wooing some portion of that vast human stream of emigration, directing its course westward, to seek the nearest haven, and find a home in little Nova Scotia. But all in vain. More distant, because more influential, Canada intercepted a part, and the United States absorbed a greater portion still. We talked, and wrote, and proved to demonstration what a noble field our Province was for capital, and skill, and labor. But we talked and wrote all in vain. Our isolation and obscurity were the consequence of our littleness, and it was evident that so long as we were small, we would remain isolated and obscure. Our farms hitherto have yielded barely one-fourth of their capability; and even that fraction the poor farmer has had, to a great extent, to dispose of in the way of barter. Our fisheries have not enriched those men who have been toiling by the sea, and our mineral treasures vast enough to make fortune of an empire, have been almost totally undeveloped. We have built railways at the public expense for our ideal traffic, which have paid little more than working expenses, leaving the interest of the first cost to be paid out of the public chest. Such has been the record of our past, and such would have continued to be our record for the future had we selfishly and foolishly insisted upon wrapping ourselves up in our own isolation.
We have chosen the better and the wiser course, and the great Demonstration of Monday last has proved that the Provincial heart beats sound and sympathetic with the great constitutional change. Nova Scotia is, indeed, to-day both a Province and an integral portion of a Dominion, with room and verge enough for the energy and enterprise of 150 millions of human beings, with a territory resting upon two oceans, lying in the great highway of the commerce, both of the east and of the west, covering at least one million of square miles of land, capable of successful cultivation, situated within the Temperate Zone and possessing on the whole the most healthy climate in the world.
For the first time we have got a fair chance in the peaceful conflict going on all around us, after progress, prosperity, and individual comfort; joined with that feeling of security and pride, and love of country which recognized status alone can give. Nova Scotia is no longer a petty Province, nor Halifax a petty town, nor what we called towns, small villages, whose names were unknown, beyond the circumference of the Province itself. The day of small things has passed away, and henceforth we will have our names inscribed among the nations of the Western World. The United States is great and powerful, and for generations to come will continue in advance of us, but to us will be accorded the second place on the Continent of North America and before many years shall have passed over our heads, we will be in point of position, influence, and material prosperity the second on the whole Continent from Behring's Straits to Cape Horn.