MEN AND EVENTS IN THE PUBLIC EYE

R. P. CHESTER June 1 1909

MEN AND EVENTS IN THE PUBLIC EYE

R. P. CHESTER June 1 1909

It was Wellington who once declared that the battle of Waterloo was won on the cricket creases of Eton and Harrow. At these famous schools the preparatory work was done, the physical manhood developed, that strength, self reliance and confidence which led later to victory. It is known that a general election, like any other great triumph, is not captured by a few days’ or a few weeks' work. It means a labor of months—more often years. It requires long, thorough, consistent organization, discipline and instruction. Imbued with this idea it is announced that the Opposition in the Canadian House of Commons intend to organize Quebec as it never was before. It is said the Conservative forces will be so well drilled that on the date of the next Federal engagement the result will not be eleven Conservatives, fifty-three Liberals and representative of the Labor Party, which was the verdict of that province in October last. The man, who has the campaign of education and enlightenment in hand, who will lead the attack, see that every district is properly organized, meetings held, and addresses delivered on the political issues of the day and the work of the past session, is Frederick Debartzch Monk. He is the able, trusted lieutenant of R. L. Horden, and recently was offered and accepted the position of leader of the Conservative party in Lower Canada. Mr. Monk is a lawyer by profession and a politician by instinct. He loves the smell of party powder and to hear the roar of disant cannonading. Fond of political life, in the last four elections he has been successful in his own constituency—Jacques Cartier. He is a gentleman of quiet, dignified bearing with all the culture and grace of a French-Canadian, though decidedly English in appearance. Possessed of good judgment and a strong will, he has a calm judicial mind and is a ready, brilliant debater in both French and English. He is not on extremist, his attitude on all topics of national importance being marked, by breadth of sentiment and liberality of utterance. His father, the late Hon. Samuel Cornwallis Monk, was a judge of the Court of Queen’s Bench for Quebec, and a gentleman of English descent, coming originally from Devonshire. Mr. Monk’s mother was of French extraction, so that the man, who will uphold the Conservative cause down east during the next election, possesses the best elements and characteristics of the two races. He is often referred to by his admirers as an Englishman of French birth and a Frenchman with an English name.

Has the time come for the sanitarians to turn from our old friend the chained dipper and its polite successor, the glass tumbler, as a medium for the slaking of thirst in schools, parks, and public buildings generally? Has the time arrived when we may accept the “bubble fountain” as a practical, everyday fixture, tending to cleanliness and sanitation and not as a fad? The fixture was introduced in Washington five years ago, as more or less of a novelty. “Bubble fountains” may be divided roughly into two classes; those in which there is a valve by which the drinkers cause the stream to flow, and the type commonly called continuous flow. These two classes may each be divided into two types; in one of which the water spouts directly upward from a nozzle, and in the other the stream from the spout is retarded by a small mass of water to give ease to the act of drinking. The arrangement in every case compels the drinker to drink directly from the top of the stream, without the lips coming in contact with any part of the fixture.

The $400 prize offered by the Navy League for the best essay on, “Why Canada Should Have a Navy of Her Own,” was won by Mrs. W. Hewes Oliphant, of Toronto. The competition was open to any one who desired to enter, the only condition being that contributions should not exceed in length 6,000 words. Mrs. Oliphant became interested only after seeing the advertisement in a local paper asking for articles on the subject. She had never written anything except papers on musical topics, which she read before several clubs of which she is a member. Mrs. Oliphant is a native of Toronto, and greatly interested in all movements pertaining to the work and welfare of women.

Are our fellow-citizens of German extraction loyal? How would they regard a struggle between England and Germany? These are questions which many a Canadian has been asking during the last few months. They were well answered by Valentine Stock, M.P.P., during the last session of the Ontario Legislature.

Mr. Stock is of German extraction and has lived practically all his life in the county of Perth, which was peopled largely by Germans. During the course of a debate a speaker in referring to the Quebec Tercentenary Celebration, made use of these words : “On St. Andrew’s Day let the Scottish flag fly, on St. George’s the English, on St. Patrik’s the Irish and on Jean de Baptiste’s the tri-color.” Mr. Stock, in reply, pointed out that the speaker had overlooked the Germans. “I did not expect the honorable gentleman,” said he, “to say let the German flag fly on certain occasions, but he might at least have said, "let the German sing his patriotic songs.” (A voice. “Die Wacht am Rhein.”) “Yes, ‘Die Watcht am Rhein’ and ‘Deutschland, Deutschland uber alles,’ with the word Canada in place of the word Deutschland; and while teaching his children, our young Canadians ‘Die Watch am Rhein,’ the German-Canadian will remind them that we have a Rhine in Canada on a grander scale than the Rhine of the Fatherland—a Rhine extending from the head of Lake Superior to the Atlantic Ocean, with falls far more majestic at Niagara and scenery down among the Thousand Islands more lovely and exquisite than even the German Rhine can boast. Thus the German-Canadian implants into his offspring the same love and affection for their native land, Canada, as fills his heart for his Fatherland. Our Canadians of German descent do not ask any favors nor special notice, but they do not consider it necessary to be continually overlooked. The German citizen may have his weaknesses, but he has also his good qualities, peculiar to his nationality which, intermingled with the best qualities of the English, Scotch, Irish, French and other foreign elements in Canada, will build up a national character not to be equalled in the world.”

Sir John Jackson, head of the great firm who have secured the contract for the construction of a new railway across the Andes, is one of the most eminent of British civil engineers and contractors for public works. Among the undertakings now being carried out by his firm are the Admiralty Docks at Devonport, the Admiralty Harbor at Simon’s Bay, Singapore Harbor, and the Tyne Breakwater. They were also responsible for the foundations of the Tower Bridge, Dover Harbor, and the last section of the Manchester Ship Canal. The new railway will run from Arica, in Chile (sacked by Drake in 1579), to La Paz, in Bolivia, and is estimated to cost £3,000,000.

The story of Sir Donald Currie’s life is one of the romances of successful trade. Genius, like murder, will out, and the man with the right stuff in him will come to the front, even if his start in life be, as it is said to have been in the case of Sir Donald, in the humble calling of a barber’s boy. Genius, however, requires to be allied to pluck, and of that quality the man who started the “Castle” line to South Africa, and ran it on liberal lines which, in the long run, brought the older-established “Union” to terms and amalgamation, was not wanting. Sir Donald’s friendship with Mr. Gladstone is, of course, the fact in his life best known to the public. The voyage with Tennyson in the Pembroke Castle is, and deserves to be, an historic event. Three reigning Sovereigns and our present Queen visited the distinguished party on board. Noctes ambrosinae indeed must those evenings in the North European summer, with Gladstone and Tennyson for companions, have been for the successful man of affairs.

A record of twenty-three years in public life without a single defeat at the polls is somewhat unusual at the present time when constituencies are prone to change representatives every ten or twelve years. The legislator with this fortunate political career is Senator James H. McColl, an interesting visitor from the Commonwealth of Australia, who has been in Canada during the past month and is now traveling through the western provinces on his way home. Senator McColl has a rather unique personality, and for a politician is a mixture of many virtues.

He is a consistent advocate of woman suffrage and has supported every measure, having in view the extension of the franchise to the wives and daughters of the antipodes. He is an energetic worker in and president of the Young Men’s Christian Association in his own city, Bendigo, Victoria, a Sunday school superintendent, a Presbyterian, a prominent farmer, a Liberal and a deputy chairman of the Australian Senate. In addition he has served the people of the Commonwealth for a generation or more in various legislative capacities. Senator McColl came to America as a delegate to the Dry Farming Congress, which was held recently in Cheyenne, Wyoming. Since then he has been traveling extensively both in Canada and the United States, gathering information on agricultural and other matters which will be of use in his own country. He expects to reach home in June, in time for the assembling of the Commonwealth Parliament. He first entered the Victoria Parliament in 1886, being elected for the same district that his father had represented for five years. He sat for this constituency for fifteen years, during which time he filled the positions of Minister of Mines and Water Supply in the Government of Sir James Patterson, Minister of Lands in the administration of Hon. Allan McLean. On the inaugauration of the Commonwealth he forsook state politics and stood for the district of Euchuca, which included his previous constituency. He was successful and continued to sit as a member of the House of Representatives until 1907, when he resigned to become a candidate for the Senate. That body is elected by the vote of the people, the term for each member being six years, three senators retiring every three years. The retiring Senator, Simon Fraser, an old Canadian, headed the polls with Mr. McColl second, he being 53,000 votes ahead of the third man. His long career as a politician uninterrupted by a single defeat, testifies to the respect in which the Senator is held. He is a man of broad views, constructive ideas and sound judgment and is deeply interested in agriculture, a pure water supply and other progressive measures.

A career full of inspiration to young men is that of William J. Rogers, of New York. His life work affords a valuable lesson to youth, of what may be achieved by persistency, pluck and integrity. In the early sixties young Rogers, who was the son of a New York provision dealer, was a clerk in a small grocery store in the metropolis. When the American Civil War broke out, both he and his father enlisted. After two years of hard campaigning the son returned to civil life. Out of work, he advertised for a job, getting three replies, two of which he discarded. The third offer was to drive a milk wagon for the New York City Condensed Milk Company, the enterprise which Gail Borden had then but recently begun to popularize. This was in 1863. Just twenty-one years later the industrious and resourceful driver, so steady his progress, became manager of the Borden's Condensed Milk Co. (successors to N. Y. City Condensed Milk Co.) subsequently succeeding to the presidency. His directing influence had permeated every department of the business. He possessed rare faculties of discernment, and was conscientious in discharging even the smallest details of duty. The condensed milk industry was then new. The public was slow in comprehending the importance of a pure food supply. Young Rogers foresaw that a plan of education and enlightenment was necessary. This lie carried through to a remarkable degree of success, through the employment of many well-laid plans of a fertile brain. By a policy of honorable treatment to all with whom he came in contact and the judicious selection of capable assistants, Mr. Rogers had the satisfaction of seeing the business grow to tremendous proportions. In 1884, after being for some time an invaluable aid to Mr. Klemm, the former secretary and manager, Mr. Rogers succeeded to that double office upon his death. Several years later H. Lee Borden declared to the company that, while he appreciated the honor of being its president, he felt it but right that the man who actually did the work and whose directing influence permeated every department should also ostensively hold the office. He was then elected president of the company, and as its president he still continues, after a service of nearly half a century. Having attained a high position in industrial life, William J. Rogers has again and again been solicited to let his name, if not his power, be used in the development of other enterprises, but always in vain. Of modest disposition, he has preferred to do one thing and do it well, and his first duty has been, and, no doubt, will continue to be, to the company in whost history of success be has borne so important a part.