TO THE QUEEN'S
MOST EXCELLENT MAJESTY
MAY IT PLEASE YOUR MAJESTY,
YOUR MAJESTY, in entrusting me with the Government of the Province of Lower Canada, during the critical period of the suspension of its constitution, was pleased, at the same time, to impose on me a task of equal difficulty, and of far more permanent importance, by appointing me 'High Commissioner for the adjustment of certain important questions depending in the Provinces of Lower and Upper Canada, respecting the form and future Government of the said Provinces'. To enable me to discharge this duty with the greater efficiency, I was invested, not only with the title, but with the actual functions of Governor General of all Your Majesty's North American Provinces; and my instructions restricted my authority by none of those limitations that had, in fact, deprived preceding Governors of Lower Canada of all control over the other Provinces, which, nevertheless, it had been the practice to render nominally subordinate to them. It was in addition, therefore, to the exclusive management of the administrative business of an extensive and disturbed Province, to the legislative duties that were accumulated on me during the abeyance of its representative government, and to the constant communications which I was compelled to maintain, not only with the Lieutenant-Governors, but also with individual inhabitants of the other five Provinces, that I had to search into the nature and extent of the questions, of which the adjustment is requisite for the tranquillity of the Canadas; to set on foot various and extensive inquiries into the institutions and administration of those Provinces; and to devise such reforms in the system of their government as might repair the mischief
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Publication information: Book title: Lord Durham's Report:An Abridgement of Report on the Affairs of British North America. Contributors: Lord Durham - Author, Gerald M. Craig - Editor. Publisher: McClelland and Stewart. Place of publication: Toronto. Publication year: 1963. Page number: 16.