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Hector-Louis Langevin (1826-1906)
The Fathers of Confederation at the London Conference

[letter to his brother Jean]
[Present with Langevin were John A. Macdonald (Canada), George-Etienne Cartier (Canada), Alexander Tilloch GaIt (Canada), William P. Howland (Canada), William McDougall (Canada), Charles Tupper (Nova Scotia), Adams G. Archibald (Nova Scotia), Jonathan McCully (Nova Scotia), William A. Henry (Nova Scotia), John M. Johnson (New Brunswick), Samuel Leonard Tilley (New Brunswick), Charles Fisher (New Brunswick), R.D. Wilmot (New Brunswick), Peter Mitchell (New Brunswick), John W. Ritchie (Nova Scotia - "whose name I have forgotten for the moment")]

Macdonald is a sharp fox. He is a very well informed man, ingratiating, clever and very popular. He is the man of the conference. Cartier and I, we are Nos. 2 and 3. Galt is a clever financier, but too headstrong and too yielding. He is not stable. Howland is a second-class man, but prudent to excess, he is even timid; he is very slow to make up his mind. McDougall is capable, he gathers information constantly, but he is frankly lazy, possessed with great ambition and little frankness. Mr. Tupper, of Nova Scotia, is capable, but too incisive; he makes many bitter enemies for himself; he is ambitious and a gambler. Mr. Archibald, also of Nova Scotia, is a good man of the law; calm, capable, respected and respectable and represents the opposition with McCully. McCully is a headstrong man, but has a good heart; he is a good writer and a good advocate. Henry, of Nova Scotia, is a man of six feet one inch, popular, ugly, has the gout, a good heart, loves pleasure and politics which he has followed for twenty-two years; he is a man of many gifts. Johnson is a distinguished advocate, brusque, and pleasure-loving; he is said to be eloquent. He will play only a moderate part in the conference. New Brunswick is represented by Tilley, a deft trimmer, clever and adroit. He is one of the most distinguished men of the Maritimes. He has four companions: Fisher, a good fellow who talks a good deal and has only a mediocre capacity; Wilmot, a mediocre man, more capable none the less than Fisher, but very ugly; Mitchell, Prime Minister by accident, a good fellow, wordy, with a swelled head, aware of his own importance. There is another whose name I have forgotten for the moment.


Source: Andrée Désilets, Hector-Louis Langevin: Un père de la Confédération canadienne (1969)

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