Toronto “Patriot” May 23, 1848
The Times in a tolerably strong article has taken up the subject of Emigration. We have not room for more than a small portion of it – but it will be quite enough to show that this important matter is attracting notice in Britain. We say this because it is well known that The Times is strongly indicative of what the public feeling may be, and is ordinarily known to follow, not lead it.
While noticing this we may congratulate Canada on the result of the humanity and patriotism which led an Irish gentleman to accompany certain of his own tenantry in their emigration to this noble country. Mr. De Vere, whose name has been before in our paper, actuated by the purest motives and guided by an unusual share of philanthropy, accompanied several of his tenantry to this country as a steerage passenger, and was thus enabled to testify in the most unanswerable manner the hardships which these poor people undergo, and for which, in general, they have no redress. His proceedings have been already before our readers, and we now refer to them for the purpose of saying that we believe Mr. De Vere’s experience has been already productive of good effects. This gentleman is now about to return to Europe – carrying with him more information, and more actual knowledge respecting “Emigration to Canada” in every sense of the term, than, we believe, falls to the lot of any other person, be he who he may. We should do injustice to Mr. De Vere did we not notice that while in Toronto he closely and frequently inspected the Hospital sheds, crowded as they were with contagious fever, and accompanied the Emigrant Agent in his visits to Steamers as they arrived with their loads of passengers, and to the Emigrants Sheds; so that no part of the travel of the Emigrant form their deserted home in the Old Country to their shanty in the new is unknown to them.
Mr. De Vere carries with him the esteem and affection of all who know him personally, and the high respect and ardent good wishes of those to whom he is known only by character.