This paper considers the development of Canadian manufacturing interests and manufacturers＇ protectionist movement in the late nineteenth century. As a case, it analyses manufacturers＇ views and activities in connection with the implementations of the Cayley Tariff of 1858, the Galt Tariff of 1859, and the National Policy tariff of 1879. Not until the late 1850s did the protectionist movement start in Canada. This movement was led by Isaac Buchanan, who maintained that Canada should avoid importing industrial goods and instead develop its own manufacturing industry through protective tariffs. In advancing this argument, he proposed that Canada strive to become a ＇manufacturing colony＇ within the British Empire; he also established the Association for the Promotion of Canadian Industry (APCI). In April 1858, APCI held a meeting and submitted a petition for its protective tariff plan to William Cayley, Inspector General of the United Provinces of Canada. The proposed Cayley Tariff and Galt Tariff had two-tier structures, comprising lower tariffs for raw materials and higher tariffs for finished products. These proposed tariffs included protectionist factors that were also supported by APCI. It was after the Great Depression of 1873 that protectionism was raised again. Under the Depression, manufacturers＇ opinions became clearly divided between protectionism and reciprocity with the United States. In order to overcome the disagreement, members of the Executive Committee of the Manufacturers＇ Association of Ontario (MAO), the successor organisation to APCI, linked protectionism with nationalism and regarded the reciprocity as unpatriotic. This contributed to the unification of Canadian producers against the United States. MAO started to support the Conservative party after it added the implementation of protective tariffs to its platform in the late 1870s. W. H. Frazer, the secretary of MAO, established the Dominion National League (DNL), a support organisation for the Conservative that was funded by MAO. The Conservative won in the 1878 general election through the supports of MAO and DNL, and implemented protective tariffs that were known as the ＇National Policy＇.
In conclusion, Canadian manufacturers emphasised protecting the national economy against the United States through higher tariffs in the late nineteenth century. On the other hand, they did not intend to separate from the British Empire but rather fortify its economic development within it.