The Canadian Commonwealth eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 231 pages of information about The Canadian Commonwealth.

Take another look at Canada’s area!  All of Germany and Austria spread over Eastern Canada would still leave an area uncovered in the East bigger than the German Empire.  England spread out flat would just cover the maritime provinces.  Quebec stands a third bigger than Germany, Ontario a third bigger than France; and you still have a western world as large again as the East.  Spread the British Isles flat, they would barely cover Manitoba.  France and Germany would not equal Saskatchewan and Alberta; and two Germanies would not cover British Columbia—­leaving undefined Yukon and MacKenzie River and Peace River and the hinterland of Hudson Bay, an area equal to European Russia.  If areas in Canada had the same population as areas in Europe, the Dominion would be supporting four hundred million people.

It would be assuming too much stoicism to say that Canadians are not conscious of a great destiny.  For years they stuck so closely to their nation-building that they had no time to stand back and view the size of the edifice of their own structure, but all that is different to-day.  When four hundred thousand people a year flock to the Dominion to cast in their lot with Canadians, there is testimony of worth.  Canadians know their destiny is upon them, whatever it may be; and they are meeting the challenge half-way with faces to the front.  In the words of Sir Wilfred Laurier, they know that “the Twentieth Century is Canada’s.”  What will they do with it?  What are their aims and desires as a people?  Will the same ideals light the path to the fore as have illumined the long hard way in the past?  Will Canada absorb into her national life the people who are coming to her, or will they absorb her?

[1] Canada’s area is 3,750,000 square miles.  The area of Europe is 3,797,410 square miles.

[2] Canada’s railway mileage at the end of 1913 was 29,303.53.  The land grants to Canadian railroads, Dominion and provincial, stand 55,256,429 acres.  Cash subsidies to railroads in Canada up to June 30, 1913, stand thus:  from the Dominion, $163,251,469.42; from the provinces, $36,500,015.16; from the municipalities, $18,078,673.60.

[3] The tonnage through both Canadian and U. S. canals at the “Soo” in 1913 was 72,472,676, of which 39,664,874 went through the Canadian canal.

[4] The U. S. Census reports place the number of Canadians in the United States at one and a quarter million; but this is obviously far below the mark.  Canada’s loss of people shows that.  For instance, from 1898 to 1908, Canada was receiving immigrants at a rate exceeding 200,000 a year, yet the census for this decade showed a gain of only a million.  It was not till 1914 her census showed a gain of two million for ten years.  Her immigrants either went back or drifted over the line.  Port figures show that few went back to Europe.

CHAPTER II

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The Canadian Commonwealth from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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