A Greater Canada is Born
[For the source of this document, see the end of the text.]
Today a dream of greatness, present in the minds of the Fathers of Confederation more than 80 years ago, comes true. Newfoundland at long last is part of Canada.
Statesmen have done their work with patience and understanding, and we see no reason to doubt that the years to come will prove they have done it well. If there has been argument and discord from time to time, did not D'Arcy McGee say long ago: "I have never heard. of any state being founded or enlarged or delivered from danger except by surmounting difficulties"?
Today crowns the efforts of those who would not let vision fade because difficulty obtruded. Every Canadian who deserves the name must join in the welcome to 325,000 new fellow-Canadians and rejoice in the greater Canada that comes with the addition of a tenth province to this dominion.
Yesterday and today flags have been flying. Speeches have been made. Salutes have been fired. Schoolchildren in many places have kept holiday. Such things are seemly and fitting. The ordinary citizen should mark well this occasion. It denotes a fresh development in our stature as a nation, a new strength and security and prosperity for Canadians in the world's family of peoples.
Confederation implies a merging of more than resources or physical assets. It creates a new fellowship in human values, and the Newfoundlanders are a sturdy, virile race whose very independence through these many generations has typified their doggedness and self-reliance.
"Haec Tibi Dona Fero" is the motto below Newfoundland's arms, which show a pioneer mariner returning to Britannia's side from his discovery voyage. "These Gifts I Bring You" he says. Into the common treasury of Canada's wealth, Newfoundland brings great gifts of mind and heart no less than the material riches she possesses in her island home and vast Labrador outposts.
Canada in return accepts great responsibilities in respect to her new province. That is the meaning of union such as this. May all of us, new Canadians and old, remember it and mutually fulfil our duty in the future now begun.
Source: "A Greater Canada Is Born", editorial, Vancouver Sun, April 1, 1949 , p. 4. Article transcribed by Christos Kampouris.
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© 2004 Claude Bélanger, Marianopolis College