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Irish History
by Province


Nova Scotia

New Brunswick




An Attempt to Make Gaelic Canada's Third Official Language

by John Ward

Harvard educated, a medical doctor, independent Member of Parliament for New Westminster (1878-1881), appointed to the Senate of Canada in 1881 and appointed Lieutenant Governor of British Columbia in 1897, Thomas Robert McInnes was born at Lake Ainslie, Nova Scotia and on November 5, 1840, as a Semator, he rose to introduce a bill entitled "An Act to provide for the use of Gaelic in Official proceedings."

The Gaelic Language Bill faced its first parliamentary hurdle on March 11, 1890. However, when the Orders of the Day were called, McInnes had not yet arrived in the Chamber and in his absence, the bill was dropped. McInness moved that his bill "be restored to the Order Paper". Senator R.B. Dickey of Nova Scotia moved an amendment that the reading be delayed for three months.