The [[wikipedia:15th Parliament of Lower Canada|session of Parliament in 1836]] was, like its predecessors, one of strife between its Lower and Upper House, and ended without a vote of supplies. We then owed no public debt; there were no public creditors, except the provincial officials. There was for their payment one hundred and forty thousand pounds in the provincial chest, but without the "vote" not a shilling could be paid; and, from the judges downwards, all were suffering for want of their "arrears".
Thus matters dragged till the 7th of March, 1837, when the great constitutional statesman, Lord [[wikipedia:John Russell, 1st Earl Russell|John Russell]], in the spirit of an absolute despot, introduced into the House of Commons a series of [[
wikipedia:Resolutions intended to be proposed by Lord John Russell, in a committee of the whole house, relative to the affairs of Canada|resolutions]], authorizing the Governor of Lower Canada to draw from the Provincial chest this one hundred and forty thousand pounds, and pay off all arrears of salary, without waiting for a vote of our House of Assembly, which, voted so far as concerned the Province with all the powers and privileges of the House of Commons, had the sole control. Many members, who expressed the true British heart, protested against such anti-British and unwarranted resolutions, and told as we should be a disgrace to the British name and to humanity if we did not resist them to the uttermost; but they were carried by a great majority in the House; and in the Lords, Lord [[wikipedia:Henry Brougham, 1st Baron Brougham and Vaux|Brougham]] was the only dissident.
Lord John, however, became frightened with his own success. He said, in answer to inquiries, the he should not act upon the resolutions, but bring a bill. Though twitted by Lord [[wikipedia:Edward Smith-Stanley, 14th Earl of Derby|Stanley]] - now [[wikipedia:Earl of Derby|Earl Derby]] - the bill did not appear; and in June, after accession of our [[wikipedia:Victoria of the United Kingdom|beloved Queen]], he declared that, not wishing to commence the reign with so "harsh" a measure, he would ''drop the resolutions, and add one hundred and forty thousand pounds to the army estimates, to enable the Governor to pay off the arrears from the military chest'', and wait the return from the province to a convenient season. And so it was done. The commissariat obtained the money by special bills sold in [[wikipedia:New York|New York]], and commenced paying salaries on the 12th of October.