Letter: Mr. Joseph Howe, Mr. William Annand, and Mr. Hugh McDonald to the Earl of Carnarvon, January 19, 1867

Historical Note

William Annand was a politician and publisher, and premier of Nova Scotia from November 1867 to 1875. Hugh Macdonald was a lawyer and politician, and the son of John A. Macdonald. Henry Howard Molyneux Herbert, 4th Earl of Carnarvon, was colonial secretary from 1866 to 1867 and 1874 to 1878.

Document Summary:
This letter lists objections to the proposed union of the British North American provinces. Some key points:

  • The provinces are prosperous in the current arrangement.

  • The Maritime Provinces could not assist in a distant war in the west but can protect themselves in the current arrangement.

  • Nova Scotia will build the Intercolonial Railroad with or without Confederation.

  • A union will not necessarily make the British North American colonies stronger.

  • There is no means for the people to change the constitution of the proposed union.

  • Gives an explanation why each of the Maritime Provinces would be better without Confederation.