Resolutions of the La Malbaie Meeting
The following resolutions appeared in Le Libéral on October 31, 1837 and were reproduced in the book Assemblées publiques, résolutions et déclarations de 1837-1838, texts collected and presented by Jean-Paul Bertrand, Montréal, VLB Éditeur et l'Union des écrivains québécois, 1988, 304 p. ISBN 2-89005-313-X.
RESOVED 1: That we have always considered, and still consider the House of Assembly of this province as the sole constitutional organ of the wishes and the will of the Canadien people, this body never having ceased being the energetic and tireless protector of the liberties and rights of His Majesty’s subjects in this province.
RESOLVED 2: That in delegating to this province the so-called Royal Commission, His Majesty’s ministers have rudely insulted the inhabitants of this country, since the adoption of this measure entailed doubts concerning the truth and justice of the representations often addressed to His Majesty through the intermediary of the House of Assembly.
On the motion of the Vice-President, seconded by the President.
RESOLVED 3: That we have learned, with the spirit of indignation that is inspired by injustice, that Sir John Russel has dared propose to the House of Commons of England a series of resolutions unworthy of a good man, and prejudicial to our dearest constitutional liberties and rights, but we appreciate them enough to defend them as free men and to not surrender except by force.
On the motion of the President, seconded by Dr. Lavaux.
RESOLVED 4: That we have seen with surprise and sorrow that far from being dictated by the liberal principles that should always guide the statesmen of the British Empire in the 19th century, the reports of said commission are based on opinions formed under the influence of national prejudices and tend to perpetuate or increase the difficulties that have for so long inhibited the development of the improvements which this noble portion of the British possessions is in need of.
RESOLVED 5: That we sincerely regret that His Majesty’s ministers show contempt for the wishes of the Canadien people so energetically expressed by its representatives and submitted to the Imperial parliament last year; but they took as the basis for their conduct towards this province the partisan and incorrect reports of said commission and refuse to put an end to the ills we have so long suffered from by changing the constitution of the Legislative Council, the primary and fertile cause of the dissensions tearing this province apart.
On the motion of Dr. Lavaux,seconded by the Secretary.
RESOLVED 6: That the proposition of the coercive resolutions proposed by Sir John Russel against a loyal and suffering people was not received by the House of Commons on England with the horror that should be inspired in this body by measures subversive of the rights we have in common with the English people, from whom we learned to cherish and defend them.
RESOLVED 7: That this absence of sympathy on the part of our British fellow subjects will force us to seek elsewhere the protection and justice which we had the right to expect from the British government in accordance with the treaties and commitments contracted with us by that power.
On the motion of Mr. Joseph Brassard, seconded by Mr. Antoine Guay.
RESOLVED 8: That if the Imperial Government violated our constitution in depriving the House of Assembly of the exclusive control of the funds withdrawn from the Canadien people, the sole constitutional means of obtaining justice and preventing the numerous encroachments of the other branches of the legislature in this province on the most recognized and best defined rights of the people, in that case we will consider as broken and void the social contract that attached us to the British Empire which, in ceasing to fulfill its commitments, will relieve us of the obligations which the treaties impose on us.
RESOLVED 9: That without abandoning other means of escaping from Downing Street’s despotism, it is the duty of all good citizens to immediately work to limit as much as possible the revenue that His Majesty’s ministers aspire to take control of to pay public officers so as to render them independent of the annual votes of the House of Assembly for the payment of their salaries.
RESOLVED 10: That the people’s funds, the sum total of which His Majesty’s ministers are on the point of appropriating by virtue of the right of the strongest, come from the taxes levied on tea, rum, brandy, wine, sugar, tobacco, and on the merchandise imported from England to this country; that it is consequently the duty of all good citizens, if not to abandon the usage of these articles, to at least encourage their importation from the United States, from which we can procure them of as good quality and at a lower price and to encourage our manufacturing.
On the motion of Mr. Andre Hervey, seconded by Mr. P. Hervey, son of Pierre.
RESOLVED 11: That it is urgent to organize patriotic associations throughout the province in order to facilitate the adoption of the most effective means of demanding our constitutional rights.
On the motion of Mr. Dominique Bouchard, seconded by Mr. Louis Villeneuve
RESOLVED 12: That the principles that dictated the resolutions of the counties of Quebec and Montreal are those of the population of the County of Saguenay, which will be ever disposed to unite its efforts to those of its fellow citizens in order to defend their encroached upon rights.
On the motion of P. Bilodeau, seconded by Ansiac Bheerer
RESOLVED 13: That the Hon. Louis-J. Papineau has the right to our liveliest gratitude and he is justly worthy of the respect and esteem of his fellow citizens, who he is the skillful and zealous protector of.
On the motion of Mr. Louis Blanchard, seconded by Mr. Aug. Gagnon
RESOLVED 14: That Messrs. O’Connell, Roebuck, Leader, Sir William Molesworth, Messrs. Grote and Buller and the other members of the House of Commons of England who raised their voices in favor of the Canadien people, oppressed and victim of base national prejudices, are worthy of our gratitude, and that the sympathy that they have shown for us is strongly felt, and will never be forgotten by the inhabitants of this county.
October 31 and November 10, 1837
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