An Autobiography HTML version

My best work in Canada was the conversion to effective voting of my good friend Robert
Tyson. For years now he has done yeoman service in the cause, and has corresponded
with workers all over the world on the question of electoral reform. I visited Toronto, at
the invitation of Mr. William Howland, with whom I had corresponded for years. I was
invited to dinner with his father, Sir William Howland, who was the first Lieutenant-
Governor of Toronto after the federation of the Dominion. I found it very difficult to
remember the names of the many interesting people I met there, although I could
recollect the things they spoke about. Mr. Howland took me on with him to an evening
garden party--quite a novel form of entertainment for me--where there were other
interesting people. One of these, a lady artist who had travelled all round the world, took
me on the next afternoon to an at-home at Professor Goldwin Smith's. In a talk I had with
this notable man he spoke of his strong desire that Canada should become absorbed in the
States; but the feeling in Canada was adverse to such a change. Still, you found
Canadians everywhere, for many more men were educated than could find careers in the
Dominion. Sir Sandford Fleming, the most ardent proportionalist in Canada, left Toronto
on his trip to New Zealand and Australia shortly after I arrived there. I spent a few hours
with him, and owed a great deal of my success in the Dominion to his influence. I felt
that I had done much good in Canada, and my time was so occupied that the only thing I
missed was leisure.
Much of the time in New York was spent in interviews with the various papers. I had a
delightful few days at the house of Henry George, and both he and his wife did
everything in their power to make my visit pleasant. Indeed, everywhere in America I
received the greatest kindness and consideration. I had been 11 months in the States and
Canada, and lived the strenuous life to the utmost. I had delivered over 100 lectures,
travelled thousands of miles, and met the most interesting people in the world. I felt many
regrets on parting with friends, comrades, sympathizers, and fellow-workers. When I
reflected that on my arrival in San Francisco I knew only two persons in America in the
flesh, and only two more through correspondence, and was able to look back on the
hundreds of people who had personally interested me, it seemed as if there was some
animal magnetism in the world, and that affinities were drawn together as if by magic.