Canadians in the Making: A Social History of Canada

By Arthur R. M. Lower | Go to book overview

24: New Canadians

A PLEASANT ROAD RUNS north from Winnipeg along the east bank of the Red River. It is edged with a long, straggling settlement, whose first houses were built of squared timber, low-set, whitewashed, with gay-coloured window trimmings. The occasional 'onion'-domed church set amid them could well have made a person imagine that he was in one of the neater country-sides of Russia. To-day, many of the logcabins have been down-graded to sheds and stables and in front of them new dwellings stand, new houses in the general North American model but with little marks of style about them that associate them with an immigrant racial1 group. For this is a Ukranian settlement in a Ukranian country-side. Formerly it was lightly peopled by the old Red River colonists, but they are almost gone now, and their survivors appear as strangers in the land of their birth.

The eastern bank of the Red River is typical of the prairies. The three provinces constitute a vast congeries of separate settlements put into the interstices of the original EnglishCanadian framework, scores of them with their own speech and their own way of life, united only by the lingua franca of the English language, by the traditional English institutions of self-government and law, and that powerful agency of community, the school. At the beginning of the century most of these prairie lands were empty, and now they are nearly all occupied. New peoples from the ends of the earth have poured out upon them, all dumped into the common mould of the prairie environment, and all slowly taking on common form from the mould. There, in brief, is the story of the largest migration movement in the history of this country of migrations; that movement which, beginning just before the turn of the century, rose to a peak in the very year in which the First World War broke out and slowly tapered off until we closed our doors in 1930; and which, the moment we opened them after the Second World War, began again and as this book is

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Canadians in the Making: A Social History of Canada
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page ii
  • Contents vii
  • Preface xv
  • Part I: New France xxv
  • 1: France Comes to America 1
  • 2: the First Impact Of the Wilderness 10
  • 3: the Foundation Stones Of New France 18
  • 4: A Community Formed 27
  • 5: the Community Established 40
  • 6: New France And Roman Catholicism 56
  • 7: New France Reaches The Provincial Stage 71
  • 8: the Lilies Come Down! 81
  • Part II- British North America 93
  • 9: Aftermath of Conquest 95
  • 10: the First Attempt At Living Together 116
  • 11: the Private Quarrel Of the English 135
  • 12: the First Wave Of English Settlement 143
  • 113: the War of 1812, Constructive Conflict 173
  • 14: the Great Days of Settlement, 1820-1850 187
  • Notes to Chapter 15. 212
  • 16: Mid-Century 240
  • 17: the Height of Prosperity 259
  • 18: the Period of Confederation 273
  • Part Iii: Canada 287
  • 19: A Nation Begun 289
  • 20: the New Nation 299
  • 21: A Sturdy Yeomanry 327
  • 22: the Birth of Modern Canada 345
  • 23: the Transcontinental Country 358
  • 24: New Canadians 371
  • 25: the Immigrant Stocks In Canada 384
  • 27: Yesterday and To-Day 408
  • 28: New Gods for Old 423
  • Index *
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