The Backwoods of Canada eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 306 pages of information about The Backwoods of Canada.

But there is another class of persons most unsuited to the woods:  these are the wives and families of those who have once been opulent tradesmen, accustomed to the daily enjoyment of every luxury that money could procure or fashion invent; whose ideas of happiness are connected with a round of amusements, company, and all the novelties of dress and pleasure that the gay world can offer.  Young ladies who have been brought up at fashionable boarding schools, with a contempt of every thing useful or economical, make very indifferent settlers’ wives.  Nothing can be more unfortunate than the situations in the woods of Canada of persons so educated:  disgusted with the unpleasant change in their mode of life, wearied and discontented with all the objects around them, they find every exertion a trouble, and every occupation a degradation.

For persons of this description (and there are such to be met with in the colonies), Canada is the worst country in the world.  And I would urge any one, so unfitted by habit and inclination, under no consideration to cross the Atlantic; for miserable, and poor, and wretched they will become.

The emigrant, if he would succeed in this country, must possess the following qualities:  perseverance, patience, industry, ingenuity, moderation, self-denial; and if he be a gentleman, a small income is almost indispensable; a good one is still more desirable.

The outlay for buying and clearing land, building, buying stock, and maintaining a family, paying servants’ wages, with many other unavoidable expenses, cannot be done without some pecuniary means; and as the return from the land is but little for the first two or three years, it would be advisable for a settler to bring out some hundreds to enable him to carry on the farm and clear the above-mentioned expenses, or he will soon find himself involved in great difficulties.

Now, to your third query, “What will be the most profitable way of employing money, if a settler brought out capital more than was required for his own expenditure?”

On this head, I am not of course competent to give advice.  My husband and friends, conversant with the affairs of the colonies, say, lend it on mortgage, on good landed securities, and at a high rate of interest.  The purchase of land is often a good speculation, but not always so certain as mortgage, as it pays no interest; and though it may at some future time make great returns, it is not always so easy to dispose of it to an advantage when you happen to need it.  A man possessing many thousand acres in different townships, may be distressed for twenty pounds if suddenly called upon for it when he is unprepared, if he invests all his capital in property of this kind.

It would be difficult for me to enumerate the many opportunities of turning ready money to account.  There is so little money in circulation that those persons who are fortunate enough to have it at command can do almost any thing with it they please.

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The Backwoods of Canada from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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