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The Third Legislature of Quebec was the provincial legislature of Quebec, Canada that existed from 1875 to 1878, following the general election of 1875.

Legislature of Quebec

Législature du Québec
Third Legislature, 1875 - 1878
Coat of arms or logo
Type
Type
HousesLegislative Council
Legislative Assembly
Term limits
Four years, subject to earlier dissolution.
History
FoundedJuly 1, 1867
Preceded bySecond Legislature of Quebec, 1871-1875
Succeeded byFourth Legislature of Quebec, 1878-1881
Leadership
Félix-Hyacinthe Lemaire (1875-1876) (Conservative)
John Jones Ross (1876-1878) (Conservative)
Henry Starnes (1878) (Liberal)
Pierre-Étienne Fortin (1875-1876) Conservative
Louis Beaubien (1876-1878) Conservative
Henri-Gustave Joly de Lotbinière (1875-1878) Liberal
Joseph-Adolphe Chapleau (1878) Conservative
Structure
SeatsLegislative Council: 24
Legislative Assembly: 65
Legislative Council political groups
Conservatives 21
Liberals 3
Legislative Assembly political groups
Conservatives 44
Liberals 19
Independent Conservatives 2
Elections
Legislative Council voting system
Life appointments
Legislative Assembly voting system
Single member constituencies; First-past-the-post
Constitution
British North America Act, 1867

In the 1875 election, Premier Charles Boucher de Boucherville and the Conservative Party of Quebec won a majority in the Legislative Assembly and continued in office with a majority government. However, in 1878, de Boucherville was dismissed from office by the Lieutenant Governor of Quebec Luc Letellier de Saint-Just, who appointed Henri-Gustave Joly de Lotbinière, the leader of the Quebec Liberal Party as premier.

Joly de Lotbinière formed a minority government. It was the first time the Liberals were in office since the creation of Quebec in 1867. Lotbinière immediately called a general election due to the minority status of his government.

The Legislature held three annual sessions, with the first session called on November 4, 1875. The Legislature was dissolved on March 22, 1878, leading to the 1878 general election on May 1, 1878.

Structure of the LegislatureEdit

The Legislature of Quebec was created by the British North America Act, 1867. It consisted of the Lieutenant Governor of Quebec, the Legislative Assembly and the Legislative Council.[1] The Lieutenant Governor was appointed by the Governor General of Canada for a term of five years.[2] The Legislative Assembly consisted of sixty-five members, elected in single-member constituencies by first-past-the-post elections.[3] The Legislative Assembly was to last for four years, subject to being dissolved earlier by the Lieutenant Governor.[4] The Legislative Council consisted of twenty-four members, appointed for life by the Government of Quebec.[5]

Events of the Third LegislatureEdit

Boucher de Boucherville and the Conservatives won a strong majority in the 1875 election, 44 out of the 65 seats in the Legislative Assembly. In the first session of the Legislature, the government directed an investigation into the Tanneries scandal, which had brought down the government of former Premier Gédéon Ouimet prior to the election. Boucher de Boucherville also introduced the secret ballot for provincial elections.[6]

However, the political situation became unstable when the federal Liberal government appointed a new lieutenant governor, Luc Letellier de St-Just, after the death in office of Lieutenant Governor René-Édouard Caron. Letellier de St-Just was a strongly partisan Liberal, and continued to be so after his appointment to the position of lieutenant governor. He was critical of the measures taken by the Conservative government.[7] At the same time, Boucher de Boucherville appears to have taken for granted that the Lieutenant Governor would automatically give the formal approval to government measures, as required by the principles of responsible government, to the point where Boucher de Boucherville issued some proclamations on behalf of the lieutenant governor, without consulting Letellier de St-Just.[6]

The matter came to a head in 1878, over a series of railway measures. The Quebec government was cash-strapped, and the Legislature passed statutes to require municipalities to contribute to the cost of building railways which ran through them.[6] Letellier de St-Just concluded that these bills were unconstitutional and on March 2, 1878 he dismissed Boucher de Boucherville as premier. He called on the Leader of the Opposition, Henri-Gustave Joly de Lotbinière, to form a government, even though the Liberals were in the minority in the Legislative Assembly. One of Joly de Lotbinière's first acts as premier was to advise the Lieutenant Governor to dissolve the Assembly and call a general election, the election of 1878, which returned a minority government for the Liberals.[8]

The dismissal caused a constitutional and political crisis in Quebec, where the dismissal was referred to as a coup d'état.[7] It also had reverberations in Ottawa. The Liberal government of Prime Minister Alexander Mackenzie had not been consulted and were caught by surprise. Mackenzie and Wilfrid Laurier privately condemned the dismissal. The government were attacked by the Conservative opposition for the actions of the lieutenant governor, which were alleged to be contrary to the principles of the neutrality of the Crown.[7]

Legislative AssemblyEdit

Party standingsEdit

The 1875 election returned a majority in the Legislative Assembly for the Conservative Party, led by Premier Boucher de Boucherville.[9]

1875 Election Results
Party Members
     Conservatives 43
  Liberals 19
  Independent Conservative 3
 Total
65
 Government Majority
21

Members of the Legislative AssemblyEdit

The following candidates were elected to the Legislative Assembly in the 1875 election.[10] The Premier of Quebec is indicated by Bold italics. The Speakers of the Legislative Assembly are indicated by small caps. Cabinet Ministers are indicated by Italics.

Name Party Riding
     Sydney Robert Bellingham Conservative Argenteuil
     Pierre-Samuel Gendron[note 1] Conservative Bagot
     François-Xavier Dulac Conservative Beauce
  Élie-Hercule Bisson Liberal Beauharnois
     Pierre Fradet Conservative Bellechasse
  Louis Sylvestre Liberal Berthier
     Pierre-Clovis Beauchesne[note 2] Conservative Bonaventure
     William Warren Lynch Conservative Brome
  Raymond Préfontaine Liberal Chambly
     Dominique-Napoléon Saint-Cyr Conservative Champlain
     Onésime Gauthier Conservative Charlevoix
  Édouard Laberge Liberal Châteauguay
     William Evan Price Conservative Chicoutimi et Saguenay
     William Sawyer Conservative Compton
     Gédéon Ouimet[note 3] Conservative Deux-Montagnes
     Louis-Napoléon Larochelle Conservative Dorchester
  William John Watts Independent Conservative Drummond et Arthabaska
     Pierre-Étienne Fortin.[note 4] Conservative Gaspé
     Louis Beaubien Conservative Hochelaga
  Alexander Cameron[note 5] Liberal Huntingdon
  Louis Molleur Liberal Iberville
     Pamphile-Gaspard Verreault Conservative Islet
     Narcisse Lecavalier Conservative Jacques Cartier
     Vincent-Paul Lavallée Conservative Joliette
     Charles-François Roy[note 6] Conservative Kamouraska
     Léon-Benoît-Alfred Charlebois Conservative Laprairie
     Onuphe Peltier Conservative L'Assomption
     Louis-Onésime Loranger Conservative Laval
     Étienne-Théodore Pâquet Conservative Lévis
  Henri-Gustave Joly de Lotbinière Liberal Lotbinière
     Moïse Houde Conservative Maskinongé
  George Irvine[note 7] Liberal Mégantic
     George Barnard Baker[note 8] Conservative Missisquoi
     Louis-Gustave Martin Conservative Montcalm
     Auguste-Charles-Philippe Landry[note 9] Conservative Montmagny
     Auguste-Réal Angers Conservative Montmorency
     Alexander Walker Ogilvie Conservative Montréal Centre
     Louis-Olivier Taillon Conservative Montréal Est
     John Wait McGauvran Conservative Montreal Ouest
  Laurent-David Lafontaine Liberal Napierville
     François-Xavier-Ovide Méthot[note 10] Conservative Nicolet
     Louis Duhamel Conservative Ottawa
     Levi Ruggles Church Conservative Pontiac
     Praxède Larue Conservative Portneuf
     Pierre Garneau Conservative Québec-Comté
  Rémi-Ferdinand Rinfret dit Malouin Liberal Québec-Centre
  Joseph Shehyn Liberal Québec-Est
     John Hearn[note 11] Conservative Québec-Ouest
     Michel Mathieu Conservative Richelieu
     Jacques Picard Conservative Richmond et Wolfe
  Alexandre Chauveau Independent Conservative Rimouski
  Victor Robert Liberal Rouville
  Pierre Bachand Liberal St. Hyacinthe
  Félix-Gabriel Marchand Liberal St. Jean
     Élie Lacerte Conservative St. Maurice
  Maurice Laframboise Liberal Shefford
     Joseph Gibb Robertson Conservative Sherbrooke
  Humbert Saveuse de Beaujeu Independent Conservative Soulanges
     John Thornton Conservative Stanstead
     Georges-Honoré Deschênes Conservative Témiscouata
     Joseph-Adolphe Chapleau[note 12] Conservative Terrebonne
     Henri-Gédéon Malhiot[note 13] Conservative Trois-Rivières
     Émery Lalonde, Sr. Conservative Vaudreuil
  Joseph Daigle Liberal Verchères
  Jonathan Saxton Campbell Würtele Liberal Yamaska

Reasons for VacanciesEdit

  1. ^ Resigned seat to accept position as prothonotary for the judicial district of Montreal, June 12, 1876.[11]
  2. ^ Election annulled, December 19, 1876.[12]
  3. ^ Resigned seat to accept position as Superintendent of Public Instruction, January 28, 1876.[13]
  4. ^ Election annulled, March 7, 1877.[14]
  5. ^ Election annulled, March 31, 1876.[15]
  6. ^ Resigned seat to stand for election to House of Commons, February 12, 1877.[16]
  7. ^ Resigned on appointment as commissioner of the Quebec, Montreal, Ottawa and Occidental Railway, January 28, 1876.[17]
  8. ^ Accepted a Cabinet position, an office of profit, triggering by-election, January 24, 1876.[18]
  9. ^ Election annulled May 29, 1876.[19]
  10. ^ Election annulled by the Superior Court, June 28, 1876.[20]
  11. ^ Resigned seat on appointment to the Legislative Council, November 9, 1877.[21]
  12. ^ Accepted a Cabinet position, an office of profit, triggering by-election, January 24, 1876.[22]
  13. ^ Resigned on appointment as commissioner of the Quebec, Montreal, Ottawa and Occidental Railway, January 28, 1876.[23]

By-electionsEdit

There were thirteen by-elections during the term of the Third Legislature.[24][25] Cabinet ministers are indicated by italics.

By-elections, 1876-1877
Name Party Riding Reason for Vacancy By-election Date
  George Barnard Baker Conservative Missisquoi Accepted a Cabinet position, an office of profit, triggering by-election; re-elected. February 10, 1876
  Joseph-Adolphe Chapleau Conservative Terrebonne Accepted a Cabinet position, an office of profit, triggering by-election; re-elected. February 10, 1876
  Charles Champagne Conservative Deux-Montagnes Incumbent resigned to take position as Superintendent of Public Instruction. March 3, 1876
  Andrew Kennedy Conservative Mégantic Incumbent resigned to take position as commissioner of the Quebec, Montreal, Ottawa and Occidental Railway. April 18, 1876
  Henri-René-Arthur Turcotte Independent Conservative Trois-Rivières Incumbent resigned to take position as commissioner of the Quebec, Montreal, Ottawa and Occidental Railway. April 18, 1876
  Alexander Cameron Liberal Huntingdon Election annulled; re-elected in by-election. April 24, 1876
  Flavien Dupont Conservative Bagot Incumbent resigned to take position as prothonotary for the judicial district of Montreal. July 7, 1876
  Charles-Édouard Houde Conservative Nicolet Election of incumbent annulled by Superior Court. August 18, 1876
  Louis-Napoléon Fortin Liberal Montmagny Election of incumbent annulled. November 30, 1876
  Joseph-Israël Tarte Conservative Bonaventure Election of incumbent annulled. February 22, 1877
  Joseph Dumont Liberal Kamouraska Incumbent resigned to stand for election to House of Commons March 19, 1877
     Pierre-Étienne Fortin Conservative Gaspé Election annulled; re-elected in by-election. July 2, 1877
     Richard Alleyn Conservative Québec-Ouest Incumbent resigned on appointment to Legislative Council. December 17, 1877.

Legislative CouncilEdit

The Legislative Council continued to have a strong Conservative majority during the term of the Third Legislature.

Party standings on opening of LegislatureEdit

Standings
Party Members
  Conservatives 22
  Liberals 2
Total: 24
Government Majority: 20

Members during the Third LegislatureEdit

The Premier of Quebec is indicated by Bold italics. The Speakers of the Legislative Council are indicated by small caps. Cabinet members are indicated by italics.

Members 1875-1878
Legislative Council Divisions Member Party Term Start Term End
Alma Beaudry, Jean-Louis Conservative November 2, 1867 June 25, 1886
Bedford Wood, Thomas Conservative November 2, 1867 November 13, 1898
De la Durantaye Beaubien, Joseph-Octave Conservative November 2, 1867 November 7, 1877
Vacant November 8, 1877 May 27, 1878
De la Vallière Proulx, Jean-Baptiste-Georges Liberal November 2, 1867 January 27, 1884
De Lanaudière Dostaler, Pierre-Eustache Conservative November 2, 1867 January 4, 1884
De Lorimier Rodier, Charles-Séraphin Conservative November 2, 1867 February 3, 1876
Vacant February 4, 1876 April 30, 1876
Laviolette, Joseph-Gaspard Conservative May 1, 1876 March 11, 1897
De Salaberry Starnes, Henry Liberal November 2, 1867 March 3, 1896
Grandville Dionne, Élisée Conservative November 2, 1867 August 22, 1892
Gulf Savage, Thomas Conservative November 19, 1873 February 27, 1887
Inkerman Bryson, George (Sr.) Conservative November 2, 1867 January 13, 1900
Kennebec Richard, Louis Conservative February 5, 1874 November 13, 1876
Vacant November 14, 1876 October 29, 1877
Gaudet, Joseph Conservative October 30, 1877 August 4, 1882
La Salle Panet, Louis Conservative November 2, 1867 May 15, 1884
Lauzon Chaussegros de Léry, Alexandre-René Conservative November 2, 1867 December 19, 1880
Mille-Isles Lemaire, Félix-Hyacinthe Conservative November 2, 1867 December 17, 1879
Montarville Boucher de Boucherville, Charles-Eugène Conservative November 2, 1867 September 10, 1915
Repentigny Archambeault, Louis Conservative November 2, 1867 June 6, 1888
Rigaud Prud'homme, Eustache Conservative November 2, 1867 April 28, 1888
Rougemont Fraser de Berry, John Conservative November 2, 1867 November 15, 1876
Vacant November 16, 1876 October 29, 1877
Boucher de la Bruère, Pierre Conservative October 30, 1877 April 5, 1895
Saurel Roy, Pierre-Euclide Conservative November 19, 1873 October 31, 1882
Shawinigan Ross, John Jones Conservative November 2, 1867 May 4, 1901
Stadacona Sharples, John (Sr.) Conservative February 27, 1874 December 19, 1876
Vacant December 20, 1876 October 29, 1877
Hearn, John Conservative October 30, 1877 February 19, 1892
The Laurentides Gingras, Jean-Élie Conservative November 2, 1867 December 10, 1887
Victoria Ferrier, James Conservative November 2, 1867 May 30, 1888
Wellington Webb, William Hoste Conservative October 7, 1875 March 11, 1887

Vacancies of less than one month are not shown.
† Died in office.
‡ Resigned.

Executive Council during Third LegislatureEdit

There were two different ministries during the term of the Third Legislature, under Premiers Boucher de Boucherville (1875-1878) and Joly de Lotbinière (1878).

Third Quebec Ministry: Boucher de Boucherville Cabinet (1875-1878)Edit

Following the 1875 election, Boucher de Boucherville made some changes to the Cabinet, but largely retained the previous composition.[26]

Members of the Executive Council: 1875-1878
Position Minister Term Start Term End
Premier and President of the Executive Council Charles-Eugène Boucher de Boucherville* 1875 1878
Agriculture and Public Works Pierre Garneau 1875 1876
Charles-Eugène Boucher de Boucherville* 1876 1878
Attorney General Levi Ruggles Church 1875 1876
Auguste-Réal Angers 1876 1878
Crown lands Henri-Gédéon Malhiot 1875 1876
Pierre Garneau 1876 1878
Public Instruction Charles-Eugène Boucher de Boucherville* 1875 1876
Secretary and Registrar Charles-Eugène Boucher de Boucherville* 1875 1876
Joseph-Adolphe Chapleau 1876 1878
Solicitor General Auguste-Réal Angers 1875 1876
George Barnard Baker 1876 1878
Speaker of the Legislative Council Félix-Hyacinthe Lemaire* 1875 1876
John Jones Ross* 1876 1878
Treasurer Joseph Gibb Robertson 1875 1876
Levi Ruggles Church 1876 1878
Ministers without portfolio John Jones Ross 1876
George Barnard Baker 1876
Joseph-Adolphe Chapleau 1876

Fourth Quebec Ministry: Joly de Lotbinière Cabinet (1878 - 1879)Edit

Following the dismissal of Boucher de Boucherville in 1878, the Lieutenant Governor appointed Henri-Gustave Joly de Lotbinière as Premier. Because of his lack of majority in the Assembly, Joly de Lotbinière found it necessary to appoint two individuals to Cabinet who did not initially have seats in the Assembly: David Alexander Ross as Attorney General and François Langelier as Commissioner of Crown lands. The only Cabinet member from the Legislative Council was Henry Starnes, the Speaker. Joly de Lotbinière then immediately advised the Lieutenant Governor to dissolve the Legislative Assembly and call a general election. Returned to office, Joly de Lotbinière initially retained the ministers in the same positions, but carried out a Cabinet shuffle the next year, in 1879. In 1879, Joly de Lotbinière appointed Honoré Mercier to cabinet, even though Mercier did not initially have a seat in the Legislative Assembly.[27]

Members of the Executive Council: 1878-1879
Position Minister Term Start Term End
Premier and President of the Executive Council Henri-Gustave Joly de Lotbinière 1878 1879
Agriculture and Public Works Henri-Gustave Joly de Lotbinière 1878 1879
Attorney General David Alexander Ross 1878 1879
Crown lands François Langelier 1878 1879
Félix-Gabriel Marchand 1879
Secretary and Registrar Félix-Gabriel Marchand 1878 1879
Alexandre Chauveau 1879
Solicitor General Alexandre Chauveau 1878 1879
Honoré Mercier 1879
Speaker of the Legislative Council Henry Starnes 1878 1879
Treasurer Pierre Bachand 1878 1879
François Langelier 1879

Legislative sessionsEdit

The Legislature had three annual sessions:

  • First session: November 4, 1875 to December 24, 1875, with thirty-eight sitting days.
  • Second session: November 10, 1876 to December 28, 1876, with thirty-five sitting days.
  • Third and final session: December 19, 1877 to March 9, 1878, with forty-two sitting days.

The Legislature was dissolved on March 22, 1878.[28]

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ British North America Act, 1867 [now known as the Constitution Act, 1867], s. 71.
  2. ^ British North America Act, 1867, s. 58.
  3. ^ British North America Act, 1867, s. 80.
  4. ^ British North America Act, 1867, s. 85.
  5. ^ British North America Act, 1867, s. 72.
  6. ^ a b c Dictionary of Canadian Biography: "Boucher de Boucherville, Sir Charles".
  7. ^ a b c Dictionary of Canadian Biography: "Letellier de Saint-Just, Luc".
  8. ^ Canadian Dictionary of Biography: "Joly de Lotbinière, Sir Henri-Gustave".
  9. ^ National Assembly of Quebec: La répartition des sièges aux élections générales.
  10. ^ National Assembly of Quebec: Les résultats électoraux depuis 1867.
  11. ^ Quebec National Assembly, Québec Dictionary of Parliamentary Biography, from 1764 to the present: Pierre-Samuel Gendron
  12. ^ Quebec National Assembly, Québec Dictionary of Parliamentary Biography, from 1764 to the present: Pierre-Clovis Beauchesne
  13. ^ Quebec National Assembly, Québec Dictionary of Parliamentary Biography, from 1764 to the present: Gédéon Ouimet
  14. ^ Quebec National Assembly, Québec Dictionary of Parliamentary Biography, from 1764 to the present: Pierre Fortin
  15. ^ National Assembly, Québec Dictionary of Parliamentary Biography, from 1764 to the present: Alexander Cameron
  16. ^ Quebec National Assembly, Québec Dictionary of Parliamentary Biography, from 1764 to the present: Charles-François Roy
  17. ^ Quebec National Assembly, Québec Dictionary of Parliamentary Biography, from 1764 to the present: George Irvine
  18. ^ Quebec National Assembly, Québec Dictionary of Parliamentary Biography, from 1764 to the present: George Barnard Baker
  19. ^ Quebec National Assembly, Québec Dictionary of Parliamentary Biography, from 1764 to the present: Auguste-Charles-Philippe Landry
  20. ^ Quebec National Assembly, Québec Dictionary of Parliamentary Biography, from 1764 to the present: François-Xavier Méthot (fils)
  21. ^ Quebec National Assembly, Québec Dictionary of Parliamentary Biography, from 1764 to the present: John Hearn
  22. ^ Quebec National Assembly, Québec Dictionary of Parliamentary Biography, from 1764 to the present: Joseph-Adolphe Chapleau
  23. ^ Quebec National Assembly, Québec Dictionary of Parliamentary Biography, from 1764 to the present: Henri-Gédéon Malhiot
  24. ^ National Assembly of Quebec: Les élections partielles.
  25. ^ National Assembly of Quebec: Les résultats électoraux depuis 1867.
  26. ^ Quebec National Assembly: Cabinet Boucher de Boucherville (Conservative), September 22, 1874 to March 8, 1878.
  27. ^ Quebec National Assembly: Cabinet Joly de Lotbinière (Liberal) (March 8, 1878 to October 31, 1879).
  28. ^ Quebec National Assembly: Les législatures et leurs sessions depuis 1867.

External linksEdit