John A. & French Canada

1850-1860
Montreal: Banquet Tendered to Mr. Thomas White, Jr. Sir John A. Macdonald Replying to the Toast of her Majesty's Loyal Opposition. Source: Library and Archives Canada.Pinterest
Montreal: Banquet Tendered to Mr. Thomas White, Jr. Sir John A. Macdonald Replying to the Toast of her Majesty's Loyal Opposition. Source: Library and Archives Canada.

Part of Sir John A. Macdonald's greatness and one of his most important legacies revolves around his treatment of French Canada. In the 1850s he famously wrote to an English speaker in Lower Canada the following: “Treat them as a nation and they will act as a free people generally do – generously. Call them a faction and they become factious.” Most successful Canadian Prime Ministers, with some modifications of course, have attempted to follow this sage advice from the Father of Confederation.