Johnville No105 19mar1864

MF – 1864.04.19 – Emigrant Aid Association – #105 – F12249

TO THE EDITOR OF THE FREEMAN.

SIR: – It would seem from your [answers] to the letter of “Anti-Humbug,” in your issue of last Saturday, that the “Emigrant Aid Association” is somehow in the position that our present Government occupies. It has become and actually is a “one-man” Association. Now an Association of the kind can hardly be said to exist when its members are kept in the dark by its Executive as regards the working out of the objects for which they associated; much less can it be said to exist if even those who were formally declared an Executive body by the Association in its integrity have long since, perhaps by a coup d’etat, ceased to act as such, and resigned their power into the hands of the President, through whom we are told that the Association now “mainly works.” What [its] work has been during the past two years the public have a right to know, as the Report of the Crown Land Office is dumb regarding the “Bishop’s settlements.” As another associate, I felt an interest in looking over that Report that I might discover the progress made, and was not a little surprised to find that no report had been submitted concerning these lands at all.

Now, Mr. Editor, although you have not given the name of the Secretary, I am entirely of opinion that, whoever that gentleman may be, he ought to come forward as such, and shew by a Report of the present state of the various [tracts], that the Association has some vitality, that it is not a bogus Association, an Association formed merely as a cover to give one man controul of such large tracts of the public domain as those surveyed by the Government for its use.

Your correspondent from the Washademoak has done well to open up this question. It is no personal matter. Thousands of acres of the best lands of the Province have been surveyed and appropriated, and it is the public desire to see them occupied not only but to have these various localities become flourishing settlements. This desire was fully manifested by the people of this city last season, who so generously aided the Rev. Mr. Nugent in his efforts to provide a Church for the Salmon River Settlement. It is well known that it was the desire to advance the interests of the new settlements that caused both rich and poor to extend to him so hearty a welcome. It is therefore due to the public, and above all to the associates, that they should know whether these settlements are really flourishing or not. A great deal has been said and written of the advanced state of Johnville, in the County of Carleton, and so much indeed of the marvellous [related] of the success of the settlers that one is almost tempted to fancy that for some reason or other it has been the favored locality. But it must be remembered that besides this settlement of euphonious name, tracts in Sunbury, Queen’s, Westmorland and Kent have been also surveyed, and I understand that these lands are in a general way in no manner inferior to those in Carleton. There may, it is true, be something in the name. Were the Society’s acts public, and under the controul of a vigorous responsible Executive, it would be conducive to the good not only of the Carleton settlement, but also to that of all the others, which it would seem have suffered so much from the “delays, &c.,” as from a partial neglect. As it is a public matter, I for one am glad that your correspondent has sent you his queries, the answers to which will no doubt satisfy him, yet as he appears to aim at the Commissioner and his mode of action, I have thought it well to divest the matter of all personality and view it merely as one of public consequence.

By giving this insertion, you will much oblige. your’s – A SUBSCRIBER.