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‘ [366] too powerful and too populous to be governed by us
chap. XVI.} 1760.
at a distance.’ If Canada were annexed, ‘the Americans,’ it was objected in conversation, ‘would be at leisure to manufacture for themselves, and throw off their dependence on the mother country.’1

On the other side, Benjamin Franklin, having many in England and all reflecting men in his native land for his hearers, replying to Burke, defended the annexation of Canada as the only mode of securing America. The Indians, from the necessity of commerce, would cease to massacre the planters, and cherish perpetual peace. There would be no vast inland frontier to be defended against France, at an incalculable expense. The number of British subjects would, indeed, increase more rapidly than if the mountains should remain their barrier; but they would be more diffused, and their employment in agriculture would free England from the fear of American manufactures.

‘With Canada in our possession,’ he remarked, ‘our people in America will increase amazingly. I know that their common rate of increase is doubling their numbers every twenty-five years, by natural generation only, exclusive of the accession of foreigners. This increase continuing would, in a century more, make the British subjects on that side the water more numerous than they now are on this.’ Should the ministry surrender their own judgment to the fears of others, it would ‘prevent the assuring to the British name and nation a stability and permanency that no man acquainted with history durst have ’

1 Rutherford's Importance of the Colonies, 9, 10.

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