- The Empire Club of Canada Addresses (Toronto, Canada), 22 Nov 1918, p. 389-403
- Rowell, Hon. N.W.; Whitman, The Honourable C.H.; Cox, The Honourable James M., Speaker
- Media Type
- Item Type
- First, a welcome and introduction by Sir John Hendrie of the Governor of New York State and his wife, and the Governor of Ohio and his wife.
Hon. N.W. Rowell:
Making preparations to celebrate the one hundred years of peace between Canada and the United States when the War broke out. What we learned during that period about settling international disputes. Such celebrations expressed in the union of the British and American Commonwealths in one great common effort of service and sacrifice to restore peace to a war-cursed world. How the freedom of the seas has been menaced over the past four years and how it has been largely preserved by His Majesty's sailors upon the high seas, magnificently backed up by the American and Allied Navies. Celebrating the achievement of this gigantic task of securing world peace. What this peace means, and what it should mean. The entry of the United States into the war, marking a turning point in the struggle. What that entry meant in terms of democracy and human liberty. Paying tribute in Canada to America's contribution to the War effort and victory. Reference to two or three aspects of this contribution. The speaker's privilege in crossing to Great Britain this summer on a transport carrying American troops and his experiences witnessing the opening of the battle by the Australian and American troops to the northeast of Amiens. Canadian soldiers welcoming American troops in France and Belgium as worthy Companions-in-Arms. The message from the Canadian Government sent to the American President on the 11th of November, 1918, and the message received from the President. Canada's part in the war effort. The Peace Conference, entered into by both nations with the same principles and the same ideals. Outlook for the future.
The Honourable C.H. Whitman:
Speaking as the representative of the "great people whose united love and admiration for the people of this Dominion amounts almost to reverence, I come to-night, keenly appreciating the privilege of sharing with you in your thanksgiving, and rejoicing that peace has come—peace with a glorious, complete and final victory." A tribute to the Dominion of Canada for their war effort. Now seeing to it that the rule of the people is the rule of intelligence and unselfishness. The American attitude to the worker, resting on a quoted immortal thought expressed by Abraham Lincoln. Congratulations to Ontario on the position taken on the liquor question. The need for government to quit its aloofness and stand shoulder to shoulder with the people. The task of reclamation that faces Americans. The greatest days ahead of us. Conquering prejudice. Marching in the van of freedom and of progress in the New World.
The Honourable James M. Cox:
"It is a matter of very great regret to the officers of the Club that we are unable to print the splendid and stirring address delivered by Governor Cox. A transcript of the address appears to have been handed to the press and a most diligent search has failed to recover it."
- Date of Original
- 22 Nov 1918
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- Full Text
- INTERNATIONAL PATRIOTIC RALLY
UNDER THE AUSPICES OF THE EMPIRE CLUB OR CANADA
Massey Hall, Friday, November 22, 1918, at 8 p.m.
"GOD SAVE THE KING."
(1) CHAIRMAN'S ADDRESS
HIS HONOUR SIR JOHN HENDRIE, K.C.M.G., C.V.O.,
LIEUTENANT-GOVERNOR OF ONTARIO.
(2) THE NATIONAL CHORUS
(a) "It Comes from the Misty Ages" . . Elgar "(The Banner of St. George.")
(b) National Song-"Rule, Britannia!" . . Arne
HONOURABLE N. W. ROWELL, K.C.,
PRESIDENT OF THE PRIVY COUNCIL OF CANADA.
(4) THE NATIONAL CHORUS
(a) "Land of Hope and Glory" Sir Edward Elgar
(b) "The Star-Spangled Banner" J. Stafford Smith
THE HONOURABLE C. H. WHITMAN,
GOVERNOR OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK.
(6) THE NATIONAL CHORUS
(a) "March of the Men of Harlech"
(b) "La Marseillaise" . . . . Rouget de Lisle
THE HONOURABLE JAMES M. COX,
GOVERNOR OF THE STATE OF OHIO.
(8) THE NATIONAL CHORUS
(a) "O Canada!" . . Arranged by Albert Ham (Melody by Calixa Lavallee.)
(b) "My Country, 'tis of Thee" . . , . ,
"GOP SAVE THE KING,"
SIR JOHN HENDRIE, K.C.M.G., C.V.O.
LADIES AND GENTLEMEN,--I am in an unusual position to-night, having been asked to preside at the welcome of the Empire Club to two distinguished Governors of two great States of the United States. (Applause.) I know that this is the first time that a Lieutenant-Governor of the Province of Ontario has had the pleasure and the honour of entertaining the Governor of New York State and his wife, and the Governor of Ohio and his wife. (Applause.) I deem it a special honour this evening, on behalf of the Province, to formally welcome these Governors as the guests of the Empire Club. (Applause.) They are both war workers, of different politics, I believe, from the conversation I have heard today. (Laughter.) In fact, not only are they different in ideas on politics, but one Governor went into the other Governor's State yesterday and made a speech, I understand, against the ideas of the Governor of that State! (Laughter.) And these two Governors did not meet until this morning, at the Union Station. Internationally, they are our great allies. (Applause.) We have passed through very anxious times. We have had four years of great anxiety, intensified last spring, but today we have great results. (Applause.) The phrase "Der Tag" has been used before, but may I say to the Empire Club that tonight we will not say "Der Tag" but "The Day"-and it has been our day, not the enemy's. (Applause.) Mr. Rowell has come from Ottawa to speak to us. (Applause.) He needs no introduction from me, but to judge by the active part he took in the Union Government, the Military Service Act and the financing of the War, I am sure he will have something new to tell you tonight. I have therefore much pleasure in introducing to you the Hon. C. H. Woodman, Governor of the State of New York; the Hon. J. H. Cox, Governor of the State of Ohio, and the Hon. N. W. Rowell, K.C., President of the Privy Council of Canada; and also, last but not least, the National Chorus of Toronto, with Dr. Albert Ham as Conductor. (Applause.)
INTERNATIONAL PATRIOTIC RALLY 391
HON. N. W. ROWELL, K.C.
YOUR HONOUR, GOVERNOR WOODMAN, GOVERNOR COX, LADIES AND GENTLEMEN,--It is my privilege tonight, on behalf of the Government of Canada, to extend a most sincere and cordial welcome to our distinguished guests. We welcome them not only because of their own public service and of the high and responsible positions they hold in their own country, but because they represent and speak for the great States of New York and Ohio, our nearest neighbours on the south.
We in Canada recognize the pre-eminent part which the State of New York plays in the American Commonwealth, and its unique and commanding position among the States of the Union. Conspicuous as has been its contribution to the financial and industrial strength of the Nation, its contribution to its political life has been not less great. It has given to the United States many of its Presidents, and it is only necessary to mention the names of Cleveland and Roosevelt to realize how great that contribution has been.
In the State of Ohio we recognize our friends immediately across Lake Erie, and we know of their fine qualities, their public spirit, and their patriotic service. Ohio also has made a great contribution to the public life of the American Nation. Probably no State in the Union has supplied a larger number of Presidents, conspicuous among whom have been McKinley and Taft. It is with especial pleasure that we welcome to Canada tonight the first citizens of the States of New York and Ohio.
When the war broke out, we in Canada, you in the United States, were making preparations to celebrate the one hundred years of peace between our two Nations. During that period we had learned that reason is better than the sword as a means of settling international disputes, and we earnestly hoped that what we had been able to accomplish might be an object lesson to the rest of the world. On the 4th of August, 1914, our preparations were interrupted by the outbreak of war in Europe, in which all the great nations of the world subsequently became involved. The first decision of the Committees responsible for the preparations was that the celebrations should be postponed; but the logic of events was more powerful than the decisions of men, and in the order of Providence the celebration was not postponed, but it was to find its expression in the union of the British and American Commonwealths in one great common effort of service and sacrifice to restore peace to a war-cursed world. Thanks to the valour and heroic achievements of your troops and ours, and those of our Allies, that great objective has been attained. Whatever doubt may have existed when the armistice was signed as to the possibility of Germany in some form or other resuming the war, that doubt has been finally removed by the surrender yesterday of the German Navy to Admiral Sir David Beatty and the allied navies under his command. We have all thought and talked much about "the freedom of the seas." With the historic surrender of the German Navy we have once more secured "the freedom of the seas." Our nations may differ about the meaning of the "freedom of the seas." We shall not enter into a controversy on the matter, but I may be permitted to point out that while your nation consists of a great number of States, closely knit together by inland transportation systems, our commonwealth consists of a group of States or free nations, bound together by the oceans of the world, and our lines of communication are upon the high seas. Just as you will insist upon protecting and maintaining your lines of communication, so we demand the right to protect and maintain ours. The freedom of the seas which has been menaced during the past four years has been largely preserved, not only to Great Britain and Canada, but to all free peoples of the world, by the patient, silent, courageous, unselfish service of His Majesty's sailors upon the high seas, magnificently backed up by the American and Allied Navies.
It is fitting that as representatives of the two great branches of the Anglo-Saxon race, we should meet upon a common platform tonight to celebrate the achievement of this gigantic task of securing world peace. What does this peace mean? It means, in the language of your President, that the world has been "made safe for democracy." When the war broke out autocratic governments ruled in Germany, Austria and Russia-the Hohenzollerns, the Hapsburgs, and the Romanoffs. They have all gone, and, let us earnestly pray, gone for ever. In the struggle to preserve our own freedom we also have given freedom to these nations.
It should mean that in the re-settlement of Europe, Asia and Africa at the peace conference, public right, which had been overthrown in Europe by cruel and ruthless Prussian militarism, should be re-established arid enthroned and just national aspirations should be recognized.
It should mean that the British Commonwealth and the United States, drawing their inspiration from the same fountains of liberty, and fighting side by side in this war of liberation, should march side by side in pursuit of the great ideals of justice, liberty and peace.
It should mean that Canada, politically associated with Great Britain, and geographically with the United States, the daughter of one, the sister of the other, should play the great role of helping to interpret the one to the other, and of strengthening the bonds which have bound us together during four years of conflict.
The entry of the United States into the war marked a turning point in the struggle.
1. It meant that the largest and most populous of the world's democracies, which hated war and loved peace, had finally decided that the side of the Allies was so just and the cause for which they were fighting was so righteous, that you could no longer remain neutral in thought or in act, but must cast in your lot with us to preserve human liberty.
2. It signified that in your judgment human liberty was in grave peril, and it undoubtedly was at the time you entered the war. Realizing the peril, you entered the struggle to make the world safe for democracy.
3. It signified that the final and greatest struggle between autocracy and democracy was to be fought to a finish no matter what the cost in blood or treasure, and that democracy would organize and pool all its resources to preserve its own existence and to give liberty to the rest of the human race.
America's Contribution--It is fitting on an occasion like this that we in Canada should pause to pay a tribute to the great contribution your Nation has made to the successful issue of this war. May I refer to two or three aspects of this contribution.
1. At the time you entered the struggle, Great Britain and her allies had incurred such tremendous financial obligations in order to carry on the war up to that period, that they no longer had the financial resources necessary to prosecute it to a successful conclusion. Without the hundreds of millions of dollars you have contributed on your own account and loaned to the allies, our present successes could not have been achieved.
2. The thorough and systematic manner in which you called upon the manpower of your nation to fit themselves for participation in the struggle, the number of troops you put under training, the number you called up to have available for training, gave new courage to the allies and strengthened their morale and at the same time brought discouragement to Germany and weakened the morale of her troops.
In the critical months of the present year, April, May and June, your Government, in response to the appeal of the allies for men and still more men, performed the perfectly marvellous task of sending over men at the rate of 300,000 a month. Their presence upon the soil of France gave new inspiration to the war-weary veterans of Britain and France, and new hope to the civilian population of France, who were in grave danger of growing discouraged after four years of incessant conflict; and finally, your declaration against the continued existence of autocratic and arbitrary power in Germany and Austria helped to release the forces of democracy in these countries, and contributed to the overthrow of the autocratic power.
It was my privilege to cross to Great Britain this summer on a transport carrying American troops. Were it not that their hats differed from ours I should have thought them Canadians. One could not wish to see a finer body of men.
On the morning of the 4th of July last I saw the opening of the battle by the Australian and American troops to the North-east of Amiens. It was the first considerable attack made by allied troops after the serious reverses of the early months of this year, and the result was watched with the keenest interest by the allied Commanders. Your troops acquitted themselves magnificently, and vied with the Australians in the vigour and impetuosity of their attack. The Allied Forces swept all before them, and by eleven o'clock that morning had attained their objectives.
On every field your troops have added to the glory and honour of the name they bear. Our Canadian soldiers were glad to welcome them in France and Belgium as worthy Companions-in-Arms. May the tie thus formed on the field of battle link our peoples together in the pursuit of noble aims.
The 11th of November was a great day in the history of the world. It was a great day for your country and ours. When the Armistice was signed our Government sent the following message to your President
"The Government and people of Canada send greeting to the neighbouring Republic on this great occasion, when we together celebrate the triumph of justice and liberty over the forces of tyranny and oppression which sought to enslave the world. They are filled with admiration at the magnitude of the accomplishments of the people of the United States in the prosecution of this war, and with pride at the thought that your soldiers should have so distinguished themselves as to have contributed in no small degree to the great and far-reaching victory we mutually celebrate today."
We were glad to receive from your President a message of greetings on behalf of your people:
"I am sure I speak for the people of the United States in sending most cordial fraternal greetings to the people of Canada in this hour of our common triumph and profound joy. It has been a matter of pride to be associated with the Canadian people, and with Your Excellency's Government in carrying forward the enterprises of the war, and I beg that you will accept for yourself and for the great forces over which you preside the most cordial greetings and congratulations."
Canada's Part--Of Canada's part in the war you are already aware, and I shall not dwell upon it tonight. Since the outbreak of the war we have enlisted over 590,000 troops. Of these we have discharged in Canada from time to time, for various causes, nearly 100,000. We have sent overseas nearly 420,000 troops. Our total casualties number more than 211,000, of whom more than 50,000 have given their lives in France and Flanders. Owing to the period at which your troops entered the war, your casualties, fortunately, have not been unduly severe. I believe when the figures are known you will find that your total casualties overseas are not large in proportion to Canada's or Great Britain's. If they had been on the same scale as ours in proportion to your population they would have been nearly 3,000,000. If they had been on the same scale as Great Britain's they would have been nearly 6,000,000. The young men of our Empire have shed their blood like water in the cause of democracy and human liberty.
Time will not permit of my speaking to you of our contribution in munitions, in food, and in ships. From the second battle of Ypres in April, 1915, to the recapture of Mons on the morning of the 11th of November; 1918, our troops have been constantly in the fight. You know the record of their service. No message which has come to the Canadian people in these days of rejoicing has thrilled our hearts more than that from the Burgomaster and Town Council of Mons
"Mons was delivered from the German tyranny by the gallant Third Canadian Division on Monday the 11th of November at five o'clock in the morning. The Council of the Borough and the whole population of the town avail themselves of this opportunity to assure the Government of the Dominion of their deepest admiration for the heroism of the Canadian people who in co-operation with our Allies have secured the liberation of the city, the independence of Belgium and the triumph of righteousness."
Peace Conference.-Your nation and ours enter the peace conference with the same principles and the same ideals. We wish to see peace established on just and permanent foundations. We believe that the peace which for one hundred years has been the possession of your nation and ours should become the possession of all the civilized races of men, and that it should be possible to establish a league of nations which, if it will not wholly prevent war, will at least make war more difficult, and will prevent the repetition of the horrible crimes of this war.
Outlook for the Future.--And what of the future? Our men have been fighting for great principles. Thousands have died that these principles might triumph. We have made the world safe for democracy abroad; it must now be the task of your nation and ours to make it safe for democracy at home. These principles for which we have fought must find new expression in the solution of our great social and industrial problems. The man is blind who does not see that the great tide of democratic sentiment which is now sweeping over Europe will find some expression on this Continent. It is only right that it should. The form which that expression will take will depend largely upon the attitude which public men, leaders of industry and of labour, assume at the present time. Labour has played a great and noble part in this war. We must recognize her right to play an equally great and noble part in the work of reconstruction. Labour has won for herself the right to a new place in the political, industrial and social life of our two nations, and the frank recognition of this fact will broaden the basis and strengthen the foundation upon which our democratic institutions rest.
The women of our countries, who after all have suffered most by this war, have served the most generously and unselfishly of all. They too must find a new and larger place in the political and industrial life of our countries.
Our two Nations, of common origin, speaking a common language, worshipping at the same shrines, and cherishing the same political and social ideals, have been bound together by the most sacred of all ties during the period of this war. May we ever stand together in the days of peace to further the great causes of Liberty, Justice and Humanity, for which we have fought together, and for which so many of our brave sons have died.