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PART I.-NORTH AMERICAN COLONIES.
COPY of a DESPATCH from Governor-General the Right Hon. Sir E. HEAD, Bart.,
I HAVE the honour to forward with this Despatch the returns from the several
Government House, Toronto, August 30, 1858.
1. MS. list of Officers.
2. Public Accounts.
3. Trade and Navigation.
4. Public Works.
5. Crown Lands.
6. Post Office.
9. Education, Upper Canada. 10. Education, Lower Canada. 11. Geological Survey.
2. With regard to the condition of the province during 1857, my report is not by any means so favourable as I anticipated at the commencement of the year, or as I could have desired. The financial crisis of last autumn swept over the length and breadth of North America, blasting undertakings in which capital had been invested with perfect confidence, and throwing back into poverty those who had relied on such enterprises for employment or for ultimate gain. The re-action from England and the United States would alone have been sufficient to have involved Canada in difficulties similar to those which pressed on both these communities. Credits given were suddenly withdrawn, and goods bought in full reliance on a speedy and profitable sale became at once valueless, whilst payment was exacted from the importer with double rigour.
3. On the farmer the shock was scarcely less severe. In a community where there is little enterprise the ebb of pecuniary prosperity is, as a matter of course, less felt, but in Upper Canada every man is anxious to improve his farm buildings, or extend the limits of his cultivated land; this he will do as far as his ready money will carry him, and a little further. The sudden withdrawal of the aid which he reckoned on from the local bank leaves him without the means of paying the artificers whom he has employed, whilst the fall of prices obliges him to part with whatever produce he may have on hand at a loss, lucky, indeed, if he can sell it at all.
4. The labouring classes have felt the consequences of this in the increased difficulty
5. The following statement made to me by a gentleman resident in the county of
"10s. York, per acre ($1 25c.) 1857.
$2 50c. per acre
"Harvest hands, per day $1 50c.