CCHA Report, 9 (1941-1942), 47-57
THE REV. MARTIN P. REID
Reveille in Washington, the latest Pulitzer award in the field of history, and the brilliant The Hundredth Year testify to the fact that the newspaper as source material for writers of history is coming into its own. In the March number of Harper's magazine the authoress of the Reveille in Washington writes - "Most historians look down their noses at newspapers. But for good or ill, Reveille in Washington was made out of the newspaper". And the versatile Englishman who gave us the other volume in 1936 has long since acknowledged his debt to the newspapers.
The single weekly newspaper that I have pressed into service as a kind of time machine to be enrolled to recreate a period 92 years back, is a bound volume of the first year's issue of The Montreal True Witness and Catholic Chronicle, the first English Catholic newspaper printed in the city. And I am treating of some only of what I judge to be the highlights among the news items of current interest to the readers between August 16th, 1850 and August 8th, 1851. The first part of my paper will be devoted to stating the facts that I am grouping under the word "Arrivals"; the second part would seem to be fairly well epitomized by "Survivals".
The True Witness itself is quite naturally the first "Arrival". Perhaps a brief extract from the editor's official statement of The True Witness' platform will supply us inferentially with the reason for the perilous venture that a newspaper is for a unit of people so numerically small as the English Catholics of Montreal in the year of our Lord, 1850. "Therefore", writes the editor, "with the blessing of God, we will reply; not to offend others, but to defend ourselves". This reply, as the context makes clear, was to the "taunts of mental blindness, of bigotry and superstition, with the undimishing hate by which our feelings are continually outraged". The newspaper was to be conducted and edited by laymen who will be solely responsible. In general it will furnish topics dealing with home and abroad news of social, political and religious interest to the readers. Articles of a purely dogmatic character will be subjected to ecclesiastical censorship.
The adjective in the name of the newly founded weekly is an unflattering commentary on the slim meed of veracity that the local Catholics allowed another city newspaper, The Montreal Witness, then existent for some time, and the most constantly offensive and irritating of those whose taunts The True Witness was dedicating itself to answer. Between these two weeklies there would seldom appear to have been a truce. They fought with pens, not swords, but they fought.
The True Witness made its initial appearance on August 16th, 1850. Apart from noting the happy coincidence of the first issue of a Catholic newspaper on the first day of the Octave of the feast of the Assumption, a holyday at that time, page one is given over entirely to the historic allocution of Pope Pius IX, delivered to the Cardinals in a secret consistory held the 20th of May.
In the so-named Italian War of Independence two years before the Holy Father had hurriedly left Rome. Now back again amid the delirious rejoicings of the populace the halo of exile and sorrow lay upon the venerable and beloved pontiff. The allocution itself is phrased in moving and majestic language. Linked with this historic event, and as a token of thanksgiving, a Jubilee of fifteen days is proclaimed to the Catholics throughout the world. In 1850 Montreal's second spiritual chief, Bishop Bourget, is preparing to build en episcopal residence and chancery office in keeping with the dignity and growing importance of the diocese.
From Paisley, situated a few miles from the present prosperous town of St. Jerome, a petition has been sent to the Bishop asking him, in the name of the French and English residents of the district, to create a new parish in which they are ready to erect a church of their own. My greatgrandfather and my grandfather must have been among the signatories of this document. Astonishing as it may seem now, two stalwarts in uniform carried the Union Jack at the head of the annual 1851 St. Patrick's Day parade. In the evening the toast to the Queen and the Royal family is foremost on the lengthy list that were drunk at the official banquet.
Patrick Flynn is the distributor in St. Hyacinthe and vicinity of the Montreal True Witness.
The corner-stone of St. Ann's, the second English parish church to be built in Montreal, was blessed in July. Higher up in the city and practically outside of the area of real life a commodious stone structure was being raised that would be known as the St. Patrick's Orphan Asylum. Adjacent to this new building was St. Patrick's church, itself only two years in existence, the mother church of all that have since been erected for the English Catholic group of Montreal.
The great Father Matthew, most conspicuous of temperance preachers of all time, was at the moment visiting in the United States and leading a crusade for total abstinence in one big American city after another. Simultaneously in the Province of Quebec the Rev. Charles Chiniquy, fiery secular priest, is preaching and lecturing in the same cause. But there is a difference. Where peace and the subsidiaries of peace follow in the wake of the devout Irish Capuchin, trouble, disorder, even riots, are the aftermath of the unrestrained, often harsh, utterances of this priest at home. St. Hyacinthe is the scene of one of the most memorable of these unpleasant incidents. So, too, is Ste. Marie de Mannoire close by, the locale for some sort of lamentable public debate between the temperance preacher and a non-Catholic.
In one of the October issues in 1850 an excerpt from an American newspaper is used in answering an enquiring subscriber to the effect that Maria Monk had died in the previous September, a convicted thief, in the New York Toombs.
St. Mary's college and the near by Gesu chapel were dedicated in the autumn of 1851. The hierarchy of Canada counted one Archbishop, in Quebec city, and six bishops. Ottawa was still Bytown and Toronto was ruled by a French bishop.
Mrs. Jas. Sadlier, resident in Montreal, was both rearing a family and working tirelessly with her pen. Her latest novel, Willie Burke, or, The Irish Orphan in America, had just come from the press and is on sale at her husband's book-store. Thomas D'Arcy McGee's A History of the Irish Settlers in America, brought up to, the census of 1850, was beginning to be advertised. McGee had not yet begun the connection with Canada that was finally to win him a place at the table at which sat the men who will be forever known in the history of the Dominion as the Fathers of Confederation. Ever and anon a fugitive slave, escaped from some southern plantation, manages to find the end of a long and terrible trail in Montreal. John Lovell, printer, is announcing the first Directory of Canada.
Across the line Bishop Hughes, mighty orator and leader among churchmen, has recently been raised to the archepiscopal dignity. Boston could boast of only 11 Catholic churches and was suffragan to the see of New York. Returning from his ad limina visit to Rome, Archbishop Hughes, travelling by the fast steamer Artic, completed the trip in twelve days.
In October, 1850, Orestes Brownson, whose massive intellect entitles him to be rated as, perhaps, the greatest individual convert to come out of the American laity, delivered four lectures in Montreal. He spoke in the Odd Fellows' hall, Great St. James street; the admission price was one shilling and three pence. The topic was "Christianity and Civilization". These lectures kept the editors of The Witness and The True Witness extremely busy exchanging discourtesies for some time.
Mindful of the origin of most of the readers, The True Witness offered generous hospitality in its pages to the current events in Ireland. One is saddened at the nature in general of the things being done or just done in the old land. It was the post-famine period. Ugly words with sinister implications occur often. Hunger, pestilence, eviction, souperism, extermination, proselytism, emigration, one gets accustomed to these terms as one turns the pages of issue after issue. There are, though, bright spots in the columns. The new University is being founded. That tower of strength among Erin's immortal churchmen, John of Tuam, is in his prime. The learning and eloquence of the indefatigable Dr. Cahill is at the disposal of his afflicted countrymen. Letters are arriving and their substantial contents received from the far off places in America to which ships have carried by the thousands the finest of Ireland's manhood and womanhood. Distant alien skies are friendly to victims of "man's inhumanity to man". Incidents such as the following are signs of the changing times. An eminent political agitator transported to the inferno that was Van Dieman's Land has got away in 1851 and at long last arrives in San Francisco. At the banquet with which the most notable citizens in the state marked the Irishman's escape, being toasted by the mayor he is introduced to the huge gathering as "Our guest, Terence Bellew McManus; Ireland gave him birth, England a dungeon, America a home with a hundred thousand welcomes".
In the Foreign Intelligence Department news of interest to the readers is furnished concerning continental Europe. France is on the eve of a political upheaval. In December, 1850, the barricades are going up in the Faubourg St. Antoine in Paris. Louis Napoleon's Coup D'Etat is a fait accompli. What is known in French text-books as the Massacre of the Boulevards is the unhappy sequel. Similar risings are being suppressed in the provinces.
In Prussia the reigning monarch's speech at the opening of the Session of Chambers seems so nearly identical to words that we have now been hearing for some time that they might have been broadcast yesterday or yester year from the Germany of Adoph Hitler. "Prussia", declares the royal spokesman, "stands more strongly armed than at any former period of time. Prussia requires an organization of collective Germany, consistent with her present position in Europe and commensurate with the sum of the rights which God has placed in her hands. In a very short time we shall be more strongly armed than we ever were at any time". This last, we are informed, was received with thunders of applause.
News from England in this particular section of The True Witness was invariably of a religious or political character. The stately and melodious sermons of Dr. Newman, a convert since six years, are printed verbatim regularly a few weeks after delivery in England. Later came the lectures of that period given in the Corn Exchange of London, the incomparable series on "The Present Position of Catholics in England". These were read by a Newman seated and surrounded by an audience of both Catholics and non-Catholics. Many of the latter were among the most distinguished laymen in that mid-century period in England.
From the issue of May 2, 1851, I lift the following brief item - "In London, we have the pleasant task of announcing the conversion of the Rev. Dr. Manning, Archdeacon of Chicester, and of Mr. Jas. Hope, the eminent Queen's Counsel". It is not too much to state that nearly every week The True Witness supplied a list, sometimes of several or again of a few new accessions to the Faith. The number of converts with great or near-great names, of people of distinction in one or another department of national life, or high placed socially or connected with those who were regarded as great, is extraordinary. The mention of Dr. Manning's conversion elicited in a subsequent issue several columns of a translated a article from the French Univers dealing with this remarkable personage already so prominent in Church of England circles.
The academy of Sciences has under consideration a plan of a suspension aerostatic bridge between France and England.
The attempt by a German Duke to reach Germany from England by balloon got him no farther than Gravesend, where the ducal daredevil after a short flight descended safely to earth.
Curiously antiquated after nearly a century, yet not untimely at the moment, is the part of a letter set before the readers of The True Witness, and written in 1849 to an unnamed correspondent by the octogenarian Wellington. Quoting from the newspaper - "I have been for many years sensible of the alteration produced in maritime warfare and operation by the application of steam to the propelling of ships at sea". The occasion of this interchange of letters between the aged national idol and some unknown scribe, was the knowledge learned of the use of steam by the French navy. An omission follows in the letter and then we meet the significant admission by England's foremost captain "we are in fact assailable".
In 1851 the Great Exposition, most mammoth of its kind in history, was opened in London with ceremonious pomp and splendor by Her Majesty the Queen, leading by the hand the future King Edward VII, while the Prince Consort performed a similar paternal duty to the future Empress of Germany.
A chatty column in one of the files describing without indiscreet details the domestic routine of the Royal family, lets us into the secret that the Queen's husband has to do his smoking outdoors; Her Majesty has a strong dislike for the odor of tobacco.
Everyone is reading David Copperfield, latest of the brain children of the universal favorite, Charles Dickens. Secure of his hold on the English reading world Dickens, bound by contract, is sending out weekly instalments of the now not so highly regarded Household Words.
London's Catholic population is about 180,000 souls, a less than insignificant handful amid the enormous hordes of non-Catholics in the vast metropolis.
The Jewish Disabilities Bill fails to be passed by Parliament; it enjoys a happier fate later.
Second in importance to the triumphant return from exile of the Holy Father to the Eternal City, the item of supreme news interest to the readers of The True Witness is the reestablishment in 1850 of the Hierarchy of England. Since the Reformation the country had been ruled ecclesiastically by Vicars-Apostolic. The elevation to the Cardinalate of Dr. Wiseman, Vicar-General of the London district, was Rome's first step in a long awaited and fervently prayed for action. The announcement of this move on the part of the Church, that was looked upon as so nearly a dead thing as to be scarcely worth giving a thought to, was received in England as if it were nothing less than the coming of another Armada. The whole country was thrown off its traditional balance. One thinks of Macaulay's lines, of how it happened when the Spanish Don was actually on his way in the old bad days of Elizabeth
At once on all her
Arose the answering fires;
At once the wild alarum clashed
From all her reeling spires.
This time it is a "papal invasion"; indeed, it was nothing else than, in the official phrase of one in the highest place, "an invasion of royal prerogative and encroachment of the Queen's authority". The country lost its head. This land, this realm, this England must be saved. With some notable exceptions the newspapers fanned the flames. The Jovian Times was not among the exceptions, not until from the heights it had thundered too loud and too long and had taken many a merited chastisement from one or another saner newspaper. The excerpts that The True Witness supplies to its patrons, taken from various English publications, friendly or hostile as the case was, make absorbing reading after almost a century. Naturally the newly created Cardinal was the storm centre of it all and the object of much that makes today a sorry, shabby story.
The public letter that he addressed to the people of England did a little to molify the excited feelings and high passions that had been revived when the earlier news first hit the country. In due time, quietly and yet not without the solemn accompaniment of all that the Liturgy demands, he took possession of his episcopal see and amid one of the noisiest national uproars on record began to go about his important spiritual business. The consecration of other bishops followed and these in turn one by one took up the burdens of their high and holy office.
When Parliament met the premier, Lord John Russell, "little John" and "the little Lord", so nicknamed by the interested folk who looked across the Irish sea with sympathy for their coreligionists in England, introduced the unfortunate measure that was to be known in history as The Ecclesiastical Titles' Bill. The object of this misshapen bit of legislation was to make it unlawful to use the name of any English city or town as the official episcopal see that did not enjoy the sanction of the head of the Church as by law established. Russell made himself responsible for the shepherding of the Bill through the various stages of parliamentary procedure. While the uproar was at its height throughout the country this man, already notorious for his anti-Catholic attitude, addressed a public letter to the Bishop of Durham, an indecent script in which with deliberate choice he had the bad taste to speak of "mummeries" and "superstitions" … as being the lot of England should the proposed measure be defeated. Every issue for months keeps the True Witness' readers on the track of the Bill. The public debate and discussion were unworthy, indeed, of the venerable Mother of Parliaments. As one reads the record now even in the quoted statements from English newspapers as filed in the annual issue of 1850-1851, it seems incredible that so many and such speeches should have been suffered to be made in that body. One thinks of Shaw's estimate, stowed away in a dated essay, of the mediocrity of the average member's intelligence in the British houses of legislation during the past one hundred years. If this writer, read, if not always admired, by his adopted countrymen, touches the truth at all in his general appraisal of mediocrity, it will have to be concluded that an unusually low level was reached in the inglorious framing of this intolerant Bill. The following priceless contribution to the debate is too good to let it lie buried in the fading files of The True Witness. Said one doughty colonel to whom the speaker had given the floor - "I do not know Cardinal Wiseman but certainly he is a dangerous man; it would be all the better if we got rid of him, for one black sheep was quite sufficient to spoil the flock".
There were 1956 petitions presented praying the Queen's Most Excellent Majesty to save the nation from the perils of popery. On the other hand, 1040 counter petitions found a terminus in the same illustrious quarters. From all the world of English-speaking peoples came to Cardinal Wiseman letters of sympathy and congratulation. One signed by the seven members of the hierarchy of Canada was sent; and from the English Catholics of Montreal was forwarded a similar superbly worded document. The organization that this bigoted move in the old country brought into being in Montreal was named the Catholic Defense Association. The Secretary whose signature is affixed to the official letter to Cardinal Wiseman was the then noted publisher, Jas. J. Sadlier. The Bill trailed through Parliament. To add fuel to the fire the premier, as if he had not sufficiently stultified himself before a thinking world, and as if to put the accent on stupidity, gave out that it was the intent of Parliament in passing the Bill to include Ireland. The reaction in Erin was instantaneous. Immediately a Catholic Defense Association was formed among the Irish. It was at this moment that the great combined genius of the Most Reverend John of Tuam and Dr. Cahill began to assert itself. Finally, after dragging through the long road of public discussion and debate and rousing fierce antagonism in the land, one happens upon a short paragraph in The True Witness. It is the last item on the last column of the last issue of the annual volume that has been the whole basis of whatever of history in little has been recalled in these pages. It was received by the editor from the mail delivered in New York by the steamer Europa, "The Ecclesiastical Titles' Bill, after an attempt by Lord Monteagle to exclude Ireland from its operation, passed through Committee in the House of Lords on the night of the 25th of July, and was to be read a third time the following week. The majority was large".
The Bill was passed. The act was incorporated into the law of the land. But it never was set in operation. The mountain had been in labor, indeed it had, but only the fabled ridiculous mouse had been born. In the grand locution of a Victorian orator it was buried in the grave "of an innocuous desuetude". Later it was repealed with a noiselessness quite in contrast with the senseless clamor that was the accompaniment of its gestation. Mention should be made, too, for The True Witness allots it considerable space, of what might be called, in modern locution, a hang-over of the Titles' Bill in the altogether mad as well as shameless Nunneries' Bill. This was an attempt to push through legislation that would empower officers of the law to enter convents, nunneries, and houses of the same dangerous ilk and to search them. The purpose was the rescue of innocent maidens held in durance vile, hapless victims immured within the walls. This bill never reached a really serious stage in the process of making it a law. Toleration and elemental decency had not been drained dry in the minds of English men and English women. And the best in the land knew with pain how many other grave, humane and pressing problems were shrieking for an answer, such as the appalling ignorance and degrading living conditions of the masses, the pitiless slavery of child labor in mine and mill, and the unspeakable status of women, even mothers of infants, working from dawn in the same inhuman surroundings.
The literature that the True Witness recommends to its readers is for the most part of the serious, heavy class. Books of devotion abound and tracts with titles not unlike the kind we associate with the present day Catholic Truth pamphlets. Cobbett on the Reformation, Lingrad, Milner, Balmez's magnificent work, Bishop England, Bishop Kendrick, Butler's Lives of the Saints, the current sermons and lectures of both Wiseman and Newman, are carried weekly in the issues. Best sellers in the fiction line bore such thrilling titles as The Carrier Pigeon, The Dumb Girl.
A whole column was devoted without fail each week to the superexcellence of Dr. Halsey's gum-coated Forest Pills. Lady readers are urged to buy them for they contain a "sarsaparilla preparation of unexampled efficacy, mild, perfectly harmless, and well adapted to the peculiar delicacy of their constitution".
Advertising was tame in the fifties compared to the psychological thing that it is at present. In the matter of wearing apparel the dapper young man around town in the mid century Montreal was being constantly reminded that one C. Gallagher offered "the very best of clothes, warranted to be of the soundest workmanship and no humbugging". "At the select boarding school for young ladies conducted by the Sisters of Charity in Bytown the students were obliged on Sundays and Thursdays, in summer, to dress alternately in sky blue or white ... with bottle green marino for the winter".
These are some of the topics that I have chosen as representative of the subjects that engaged the thoughts of those in Montreal and as far as Toronto who eagerly looked for the arrival of The True Witness from Montreal. So far and dating from the period covered by the newspaper's first twelve months of existence I have tried to consider the Arrivals. In linking the present with the past that these fifty-two issues recapture, it is heartening to realize that, in one way or another, there are substantial Survivals of this nearly ten decades ago moment of arrival.
To begin, The True Witness itself is not a Survival. In its scarcely more than half century of life it served in a practical manner, and most creditably, the cause of the people for whom it was founded. This notwithstanding, it ceased to exist. Replaced first by the Montreal Tribune, then by the Beacon, its present day descendent is our interesting and always awaited interdiocesan weekly, The Register.
The drab brick residence that the venerated Bishop Bourget built in 1850 is now the home of his fourth successor, the distinguished head of the long since created archdiocesan see of Montreal. So great and multiple are the duties and responsibilities of to-day's supreme pastor that the Holy See has given him two auxiliary bishops. One of these, His Excellency the Most Reverend Lawrence P. Whelan, is the first English-speaking Bishop to share in the administration of the most populous archdiocese in the Dominion.
Bishop Bourget himself is a Survival not merely because he was the builder both of an episcopal "palais", and of the imposing Basilica of Saint James, nor because his remains lie in a marble sarcophagus in the centre of the rich and artistically embellished side-chapel constructed by the late Archbishop Georges Gauthier, nor because he stands in bronze at the west corner of the :spacious Basilica grounds. There is something else. The fact is the memory of this holy shepherd of the flock that was mid-century Catholic Montreal is enveloped in a more than tender light, a radiance that is not earthly, and that some day may melt into the permanent aureole that the Church allows in the case of one whom she has officially declared a Saint.
St. Ann's church continues to be one of the handsomest in a city renowned for its impressive places of worship. The parish glories in a long and abundant past. The sacred edifice whose corner stone was blessed in 1850 is filled to capacity six and seven times every Tuesday for the exercises of the all-year weekly devotions in honor of our Lady of Perpetual Help.
The church that was petitioned for by the good folks at Paisley was erected almost immediately and dedicated under God to Ste. Sophie. Without wishing to intrude into this chronicle in a matter of personal concern, perhaps I may say that the last of the generation of my name that worshipped there since 1850 was laid to rest in January last, after the customary solemn rites, in this little church. Three decades ago the building that was to shelter the orphan children of English Catholic Montreal was torn down; in a manner it is a survival in the splendid Orphanage that bears its name and carries on its work in unusually lovely surroundings situated behind Mount Royal. For seventeen years the writer was Chaplain of this institution.
The site on which it stood is now known as Congress Grounds, named to commemorate the great International Eucharistic Congress of 1910. St. Patrick's church, which shared with Notre Dame and the Basilica the magnificent demonstrations of the Congress, built in what was an orchard a few years before The True Witness saw the light, continues to carry its nearly one hundred years with grace and dignity. It is in the heart of Montreal's down-town district.
Of the two mentioned great temperance preachers in the early days of The True Witness one died in the bosom of his community; the ill starred and nearer-to-home one, self willed always, after much mishappening went his way alone and apart from all that mattered in a priest's life. He is buried where he would have it in the Protestant Cemetery of Mount Royal.
Canada's hierarchy now numbers its fourth cardinal, twelve archbishops and thirty-six bishops.
The Lovell's are at this moment printing this year's issue of the Directory.
Thomas D'Arcy McGee's name is cut imperishably into the stone above the main entrance of the public English Catholic High School in our city.
Last week the Montreal newspapers announced that 1942 marks the centenary of the Jas. J. Sadlier Company's establishment in the city.
Across the line the return voyage in 1850 of twelve days by the Archbishop of New York on one of the speedy liners of a century ago, offers a sharp contrast to the 18,000 miles by air that his successor has just completed in an official inspection as Military Bishop of the whole United States forces.
To carry our thoughts across the water the Titles' Bill that so disturbed our Catholic forbears is a Survival only in the negative sense. The unwanted, unwelcome Cardinal Wiseman of 1850 so won the admiration of his countrymen that on the morrow of his funeral, in 1869, the Times, long since grown wise, declared that the solemn obsequies "took place amidst such tokens of public interest, and almost of sorrow, as do not often mark the funerals of even our most illustrious dead".
Of the twain, Manning and Hope, whose conversion The True Witness records in one of the May issues, 1851, the layman, Hope, died in early middle age. He had already achieved a prominence in public life and it was said at the time of his death that the promise of much greater accomplishment was buried with him. Of him and the convert Archdeacon Manning, Gladstone, the third member of a trio whose friendship had lasted for many years, remarked sadly, alluding to their conversion, "I felt as if I had lost my two eyes". Manning became the second Cardinal archbishop of Westminster. Within the frame of twenty-seven crowded years of episcopal administration he occupied an unrivalled position both in Rome and in the public life of England. Judged by any standard he was one of the most eminent of the Victorians. His funeral, like his predecessor's, was an unsurpassed demonstration of affectionate gratitude and esteem. The elders among London's population recalled the solemn laying-away of the old Iron Duke and the later similar grandiose obsequies for Cardinal Wiseman in 1869. "The scene that London witnessed," writes the contributor in a secular review at that time, "when the great Cardinal of the common people lay in state, holding as it were a last audience to which all were welcome, has no parallel in our time as a popular tribute to the incarnation of a great spiritual and moral force". Manning was preceded in death by Newman, venerated by all and secure forever in the heart of a people who, despite his desertion of them, admired him as a luminary among men and cherished him for his humanly lovable goodness. Both cardinals had passed the four score milestone in life. Both were Arrivals and both, too, have the right to be called Survivals. Perhaps in the opening sentence of the gracious and unforgettable eulogy of his dead brother Cardinal the aged Manning expressed in a few words what countless others since then have essayed to say and failed. "Newman was our greatest witness to the faith" is the venerable orator's first sentence. From the Catholic point of view, that brief phrase safely carries the full weight of meaning in our estimate of Newman. This, and what is written by Bishop David Mathew in his volume Catholicism in England - "In the development of Catholicism in England Cardinal Newman and Manning were complementary".
The True Witness rendered a valuable service when it introduced these two exceptionally conspicuous converts in the revival of the faith in England to its readers, and when it kept those readers informed of how it went with them after they had fared forth on the trail which each in his own way blazed.
"For good or for ill", writes the authoress of Reveille in Washington, "my book was made out of the newspapers". Too, for good or for ill, this paper which I have the honor to present at the Ninth Annual Meeting of the Canadian Catholic Historical Society has been made out of a single newspaper. Its limitations were fixed beforehand. Nor has it attempted to go far below the surface of things. At best it is a mere kodakking of a picture that I, at least, have found absorbing to look at, to write about, and to read at this meeting.