The Pamphlet Collection of Sir Robert Stout: Volume 57
We are to consider the substituted resolution as the one under discussion. I rise for the purpose of saying that, as a very old worker in this cause, I wish the cause every success. For the last thirty years I have taken very great interest in this matter. When we talked of the necessity of the Federation of the Empire only twenty-five or twenty-six years ago, we addressed deaf cars. The school of Mr. Goldwin Smith was very much in the ascendant ill the country, and the general body of the population was not fully convinced of the necessity of preserving, the integrity of the Empire. Look at the state of things now. The meeting that is assembled in this room represents all classes of thought, all political opinions; and men from every part of the world are met, not to affirm the necessity of the continuity of the bond between Great Britain and the Colonies (for that is a matter admitted by all), but to page 48 decide upon some practical way in which that continuity can be best secured and advanced. For twenty-five years past the subject we are now discussing has been making giant strides. It has been, in various parts of the Empire, tried and found a success; and this has inspired other parts of the Empire to try it. We are doing what our right lion. Chairman advised us to do—trying this matter in detail—knowing full well that it could have but one result—the eventual solid Federation of the Empire. The experience of the past years has shown that the colonising qualities of the Anglo-Saxon race are such that that race will eventually become the dominant race of the world, and we only require to be welded together in one homogeneous whole to hasten that very desirable event. (Hear, hear.) I do not want, at this moment, to enter into any details, but merely rise for the purpose of asking this meeting to allow me to express the deep sympathy with which I regard the movement here inaugurated. We are all agreed as to what is to be done, and we will all put our shoulders to the wheel when we are shown the way in which we are to proceed. Such a meeting is too large to discuss details. I suppose that, by subsequent resolutions, to a small committee will be committed the formulating of some scheme. The movement will, I feel confident, be a thorough success; and I think you are to be congratulated, Sir, on having assembled under your presidency such a very representative body, coming from all parts of the world. (Cheers.)
* Under Secretary of State for War in Lord Beaconsfield's Ministry.