John’s Believe It Or Not… April 25th

* 1849 – Lord Elgin signs Rebellion Losses Bill – Tory mobs set fire to the Legislature. * 1983 Andropov writes to U.S. student * 1989 James Richardson is exonerated after 21 years * 1995 Ginger Rogers dies * 1947 Truman inaugurates White House bowling alley

It’s Hump Day Wednesday! Did You Know…

* 1849 – Lord Elgin signs Rebellion Losses Bill – Tory mobs set fire to the Legislature.

Rebellion Losses Bill, modeled on Upper Canadian legislation, was introduced by Louis LaFontaine in Feb 1849 to compensate Lower Canadians whose property had been damaged during the Rebellions of 1837-38 (totaling approximately £100,000). It was similar to legislation for Upper Canada and was based upon a claims report approved in principle in 1846. LaFontaine saw the bill as a symbolic means to heal the wounds of the rebellion and buttress French Canadian claims to equality and power in the Canadas by testing the strength of responsible government. Consequently, the growing influence of Louis-Joseph Papineau could be stemmed. The Tories saw the bill as a sign of French domination of the union (the union of Upper Canada & Lower Canada into The Province of Canada) and their own loss of power; they criticized it as payment for disloyalty. (In fact, because it was difficult in any given instance to determine which side in the conflict had caused the damage, some rebels, as well as those who remained loyal to the government, were compensated for losses; only those convicted or exiled were excluded.) Over heated Tory opposition, the legislation was passed by a majority of Reformers in both sections; the Tories then demanded that Gov Gen Lord Elgin refuse assent. Continue reading “John’s Believe It Or Not… April 25th”

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