MEN AND EVENTS IN THE PUBLIC EYE

R. P. CHESTER May 1 1909

MEN AND EVENTS IN THE PUBLIC EYE

R. P. CHESTER May 1 1909

MEN AND EVENTS IN THE PUBLIC EYE

R. P. CHESTER

The latest Canadian to be honored by the bestowal of a title by His Holiness Pope Pius X. is Rev. Father J. J. McCann, rector of St. Mary’s church, Toronto. Father McCann is also vicar-general of Toronto arch-diocese, the present bishop being the third who has appointed him as his administrator. One of the first acts of Archbishop McEvay after being raised to the

see of Toronto was to postulate for Father McCann the title of a prelate. Through the medium of the rector of the Canadian College at Rome, the Pope cheerfully acceded to the wish. While it is not necessary that a priest who is raised to the rank of a domestic prelate should go to Rome for the ceremony, yet as a mark of honor the title was bestowed on Father McCann by the Pope himself, during a recent visit to Rome. The event took place on March 25 Mgr. Kennedy, rector of the American College at Rome introducing the recipient. Hereafter the vicar g'eneral will be styled Monsignoi; McCann; he will as well have the right to wear the prelate’s color, purple ; and will also be entitled tc sit in the highest ecclesiastical as semblies. Mgr. McCann has many friends all over North America. He has been in the priesthood 42 years ; and in Toronto arch-diocese has filled many important places. Besides being ^ vicar-general of the arch-diocese, Mgr. McCann is Chairman of the Toronto Separate School Board.

The present strenuous political situation in the island of Newfoundland which will necessitate a new election to break the deadlock, has as its two

most interesting figures Sir Robert Bond, who was premier at the time of the election last November, and Sid Edward P. Morris, the present premier, each of whom has seventeen supporters in the house. The former is the son of a Devonshire man, formerly a prominent merchant of the colony. Born at Portugal Cove in 1857, he was educated in England, eventually taking up the study of law. In 1884, he entered the political arena in Newfoundland, under the leadership of Sir William Whiteway, being returned to the Legislature for the District of Fortune Bay. Under the Whiteway Government he held the post of Colonial Secretary for eight years. Then came the defeat of the Government and the brief tenure of power by Sir James Winter. Owing to dissensions in Sir James’ ranks, the Governor called on Sir Robert Bond to form a government and the subsequent election gave him a majority of 28. Sir Robert received his knighthood on the occasion of the visit to the Island of H.R.H. the Duke of York, now Prince of Wales, in 1901. He is an enthusiastic model

farmer and owns one of the prettiest 50

farms on the Island, situated at Whitbourne, about 55 miles from St. John’s.

Sir Edward P. Morris, D.C.L., Kt., was born at St. John’s, in 1859. After being educated at St. Bonaventure’s College he studied law and was admitted to the bar in 1884. That same year he entered politics, contesting the district of St. John’s West on behalf of the Liberal Government, then led by Sir William Whiteway. He has been the representative for St. John’s West in the House of Assembly ever since. He was knighted November 19, 1904. in consideration of the arduous work he had done for the colony as Minister of Justice in connection with the settlement of the French Shore question. In 1907 he resigned from the Bond administration, giving as his reason for so doing, Sir Robert Bond’s refusal to grant an increase of 25 cents per day to laborers road-building in his constituency. In 1908, at the request of several prominent Opposition members, he accented the leadership of the party and on the resignation of Sir Robert Bond a few weeks ago, he was called by Governor Sir William McGregor to form a government.

One of the important events of the past month was the suffragette demonstration at the Parliament Buildings, Toronto, on March 24, when a petition, said to contain 100,000 names of Canadians favoring the granting to women of the right to vote on the same terms as men, was presented to Premier Whitney by a delegation numbering nearly 1,000, mostly women. At th head of the deputation was Dr. Augusta Stowe Gullen, president of the Canadian Suffrage Association, and the first Canadian woman to take a medical degree from a Canadian university. Back about 1867 Dr. Emily Stowe, a Canadian woman, took her medical degree in a New York university and began practising in Toronto. Sixteen years later, in 1883, her daughter, Augusta Stowe, completed her schooling and made application for enrollment in Toronto University as a student, only to be refused by the Senate of that institution because of her sex Trinity College, however, accepted her as a student in medicine, and for four years she suffered all the indignities and horseplay that a body of male medical students could impose upon one whom they considered as an intruder. Memories of those years must have crowded themselves into Dr. Stowe Gullen’s mind when she stepped forward to address Sir James Whitney and present the suffrage petition. “Taxation without representation,” she said after a few words of introduction “is tyranny. I never like to use the word tyranny, but I learned it from—gentlemen. The home is not only woman’s sphere but man’s alsc and because he has been neglecting it, we women feel the need of the ballot. It has been stated that the hand that rocks the cradle rules the

world but the baby does not always stay in'the cradle; it goes into the office and the factory. Labor needs humanizing for the women as well

as for the men,” said the doctor in concluding her argument. A dozen speakers supported Dr. Stowe Gullen and Sir James Whitney in his reply stated that it was too late in the session to introduce legislation dealing with such a momentous question and he asked the ladies to “call again” another year.

“The National Firefighter” is what they call F. W. Fitzpatrick in the United States, and well does he deserve the name, for he has practically devoted many years to the cause of fire prevention. By speech, writing and example he has persistently led a campaign which has for its object a lessening of the ravages of the “red plague.” Not the least noteworthy thing about Mr. Fitzpatrick, is that he was born and lived for a good many years in Canada. He is a native of Montreal, the son of an old and distinguished IrishFrench family. He studied architecture and engineering there and abroad and at the age of 21 was in

charge of important work for the Canadian Pacific Railway. Then he went to Minnesota and the Middle West for a number of years, doing some of the biggest and most important work in that country in the boom time. During the panic of ’93 he was offered and accepted the office of assistant architect in the Federal Government service. Removing to Washington, he inaugurated many reforms in government constitution and designed and carried out its most important work. In 1904 he resigned from the service and went into exclusive consultation practice and his advice is sought by architects and owners of buildings all over the United States and Mexico and Canada and even Australia. Twrenty years ago he inaugurated the movement towards fire-prevention in cities and has worked steadily at it and at great odds. Like all reformers his early efforts were depreciated and received scant attention, but by persistence and inspired with the highest motives of benefiting his fellows, he has succeeded in awaking a most general interest and making the movement very popular. A few years ago he organized the International Society of Building Commissioners. At first but thirteen cities were represented, four of which, by the way, were Canadian cities. To-day virtually every important city in the world is represented in the society. Mr. Fitzpat rick is its executive officer and City Architect McCallum, of Toronto, is one of its vice-presidents. An illustration of the effectiveness of the society’s work is shown in just one detail. It has revamped and revised the building ordinances of 120 cities within the past year. Mr. Fitzpatrick is a man of wonderful energy, and there seems to be no limit to his activities. The “City Beautiful,” is another of his hobbies. He has gotten very many cities into the notion of cleaning up and systematizing their improvements. It was largely through his efforts that a group plan was established in Washington. He is acknowledged to be the foremost authority in the world on fireproof construction, is a designer of high ability, has few superiors as a wratercolor artist, writes most entertainingly on matters of art, economics and philosophy, and even occasionally wanders off as a pastime into fiction.

Lieutenant Shackleton, who returned recently from a remarkably successful expedition to the Antartic regions may be hailed as a new Columbus. It is true he did not reach the South Pole, having gotten off at a side station one hundred and eleven miles north of it. But he did what was perhaps even more important, as a writer in Success Magazine points out—he discovered a new continent. Of course, it has long been suspected that there was a continent in the Antarctic regions. The geographers have always represented it as a very thin rim of lane' surrounding a vast area of white paper. Whether the white paper stood for land or water we were free to judge for ourselves; there were no mountains or rivers or towns or

railroads to obstruct the view. Now, however thanks to this British Navy officer with the inquiring turn of mind, all will be changed. The schoolboy of the future will have to draw maps of a seventh continent properly equipped with boundaries and mountain ranges. Because of Lieutenant Shackleton’s expedition the white part of the map of the world has become decidedly smaller. The latest Antarctic expedition has really been a great contribution to science. Shackleton and his party discovered eight mountain ranges and surveyed one hundred mountains. They ascended a volcano 13,120 feet high. They brought back with them a remarkable geological collection and valuable notes and photographs. And they stood almost as close to the south polo as New York is to Philadelphia. It is a happy augury that a naval officer led this expedition. The time may come when expeditions which add to the world’s knowledge will become as legitimate a government task as the making of war.

M. J. O’Brien, millionaire, resident of the enterprising tpwn ot Renfrew, Ontario, who recently built a magnificent theatre to foster the cultivation of art, literature and music among fellow citizens with whom he has mingled for the last quarter of a century, has had a somewhat spectacular career. A Nova Scotian by birth, he obtained his first job with pick and shovel on the Intercolonial Railway. He owes much of his success in life, not only to natural shrewdness and strong will-power, but to a genial personality, which always gave him a hold on his comrades, and later on the men under him, until he has become one of the foremost railway contractors in Canada. To-day, in company with others, he has an interest in $15,000,000 worth of contracts on the Transcontinental Railway, 371 miles of it in Quebec. He wTas one of the first commissioners for the building of Ontario’s provincial railway—the Temiskaming and Northern Ontario line. He soon was thoroughly acquainted with the possibilities and rich resources of the unrivalled Cobalt district. Mr. O’Brien has always been open for a speculation and, one day when a Toronto

lawyer, Mr. J. B. O’Brian, approached and offered him an investment in the now famous O’Brien mine, he was not long in accepting, becoming four-fifths owner of the property. He is largely interested in other mining propositions in the Cobalt Lake district, Gow Ganda, Sudbury, Nova Scotia, Renfrew and Hastings county, and the Gatineau AHlley. Down in Mexico he has copper mines which he believes are greater wealth producers than any property that he owns. He is also identified extensively with lumbering and manufacturing industries. But Mr. O’Brien’s prosperity has its drawbacks and neighbors seem bound to give him a fair share of them. Knowing his helpful disposition, hosts are anxious to get his ear with all sorts of projects—loans for this, subscriptions for that, chances for a great business development in something else—until he is practically forced to be an exile from Renfrew, for the sidewalk to his modest home door is like a parade ground—the doorbell is ringing, the telephone is resounding, and even his meals are interrupted. If he would but listen, he could make so many others rich with this scheme or the other, and could increase his own wealth so greatly also ! If he is to enjoy the comfort of his own fireside, he will, like the kings of old, have to ap point an Almoner to listen to all tales of need, and a Buffer to ward off the attentions of the men who have schemes.

“An object lesson to the world” was the way in which the Premier of New Zealand characterized the offer of two warships recently made by the people of that colony to the British Government. To the people of the mother land this offer must have come as a pleasant counterirritant to the prospect of German activity. Sir Joseph George Ward, K.C.M.G., the leader of New Zealand’s Government, is the successor of Sir Richard Seddon, whose death occurred in 1906. He was born in 1857, and was for many years a member of the Seddon administration, holding the offices of Postmaster-General, Colonial Secretary and Minister of Railways at various times. He was created a K.C.M.G. in 1901 on the occasion of the visit to New Zealand of the Duke and Duchess of York.

The ability of Germany to produce Dreadnoughts is evidenced by the extent of equipment of the great Germania shipbuilding yard at Kiel which is a wing of the great Krupp business. The large building slips are the most important features of the establishment. Of these ten are planned but only seven have so far been built. Their length is from 377 ft. to 640 ft. with a breadth of from 85 ft. 4 in. to 98 ft. 6 in. The three others will be still larger, one being intended to have a length of 836 ft. These slips are built of concrete with granite walls, and are closed by pontoons. Four of them are completely covered with glass roofs and sides so that the work can go on in advantageous conditions, whatever may be the state of wind or weather. They are lofty with sufficient head room, and are provided with the latest appliances. Each has two overhead travelling cranes worked by electric motors capable of lifting six tons. They can thus convey heavy fittings to any part of the ships in hand. The covered slips enable the period in which ships remain in hand to be shortened, and there is material advantage in vessels being constructed under cover from the weather.