Front page of Le Canadien, November 22, 1806, vol. 1, no 1.
|Founded||November 22, 1806|
|Headquarters||Quebec City, Montreal|
Le Canadien (French pronunciation: [lə kanadjɛ̃]) was a French language newspaper published in Lower Canada from November 22, 1806 to March 14, 1810. Its motto was: "Nos institutions, notre langue et nos droits" (Our institutions, our language, our rights). It was released every Saturday and the yearly subscription was of 10 chelins or shillings.
The newspaper was founded in Quebec City by lawyer Pierre-Stanislas Bédard and associates François Blanchet, Jean-Antoine Panet, Jean-Thomas Taschereau and Joseph Le Vasseur Borgia. All were members of the Parliament of Lower Canada at the time. The editor was Jean-Antoine Bouthillier. The newspaper quickly became the voice of the Parti canadien in their battle against the English party and the government of governor James Craig.
On March 17, 1810, the press and the papers of the editorial office on rue Saint-François were seized by the government. The printer Charles Lefrançois was imprisoned and a patrol searched the city for conspirators. The Quebec Mercury had previously insinuated that the French Canadians and the Americans were plotting against England. Two days later, no conspirators had been found. Bédard, Blanchet and Taschereau were arrested and also jailed.
The prisoners were refused habeas corpus. While in prison, Bédard was nominated as member of parliament in the Surrey riding and elected at the general election of March 27, 1810. In 1811, MP Louis-Joseph Papineau asked Governor Craig to clear Bédard of all charges. Governor Craig refused. Bédard was finally ordered out of prison at the end of the Legislative Assembly's session. He was never tried.
- "Le Canadien". Towards Confederation. Library and Archives Canada. Retrieved 2009-04-26.[dead link]
- Provost, Honorius (1987). "Jean-Thomas Taschereau". Dictionary of Canadian Biography Online. Retrieved 2009-04-26.
- Brassard, Michèle; Hamelin, Jean (1994). "Joseph-Israël Tarte". Dictionary of Canadian Biography Online. Retrieved 2009-04-26.
- Chronologie de l'histoire du Québec (in French)