small flourish



Hints of Klan Methods Heard Among Grand Forks Folks

NELSON, March 2. – Premier John Oliver arrived in Nelson last night from Grand Forks, in which city he had a hectic Sunday with the Doukhobors, who are credited with having burned a government school Friday night at Spencer, following imprisonment for a fortnight of two Doukhobors who refused to pay $5 fines for failure to send their children to the school.

After an hour’s parade of the city 800 Doukhobors surrounded the residence of Rev. F. E. Runnalls, the premier’s son-in-law, sang for him, and then invited an address.

After the premier had explained that the laws of the province had been made for the general benefit, and that people from other countries were given equal privileges with Canadians on condition of obeying those laws, and that he intended to see them enforced, a Doukhobor spokesman broke in with the accusation that British Columbia laws had killed Peter Veregin, their late leader.


“You lie,” he shouted to the premier, who informed the band that Veregin was killed not by British Columbia laws but in spite of them. Further elucidations by the premier of the just basis of Canadian laws were met by the fling:
“We believe our laws are more right.
” Mr. Oliver retorted, “The laws would probably be more right if you were dead than as you are now.”


Grand Forks dispatches say Doukhobors were seen prowling around the city’s public school an hour or two before the Spencer school fire, and that the city is guarding the residence of Principal H. A. Glaspell, who was threatened for his part in providing information for the prosecution of the delinquent cases, and also the city building, which confines the two Doukhobor prisoners, who are on a hunger strike. The citizens are talking of Klan methods.

Source: "Oliver Lays Down Law to Doukhobors," The Vancouver Sun, March 2, 1925.

Return to parent page