Presentation on theme: "Chapter 11 -The Steel Ribbon British Colombia had joined Confederation on Sir John A.’s promise that a railway would be build in ten years. If B.C. did."— Presentation transcript:
Chapter 11 -The Steel Ribbon British Colombia had joined Confederation on Sir John A.’s promise that a railway would be build in ten years. If B.C. did not get a rail link there was a good chance that it may join the U.S. After the election of 1872, Sir John A. and the Conservatives turned their attention to railway building. A group of business people under Sir Hugh Allan formed the Canadian Pacific Railway Company. Allan was rumoured to be the richest person in Canada. But soon the plan came crashing down and left Sir John A. Macdonald in a lot of political trouble.
The Pacific Scandal Some papers were stolen from Sir Hugh Allan by a former employee and given to the Liberal party. The Liberals said the papers proved Allan and his friends had given large amounts of money to Macdonald’s government. Was it a bribe?????? The Conservatives admitted that Allan gave them $350 000 during the 1872 election. The scandal forced the Macdonald and the Conservatives to resign and the Liberals took over for the next 5 years.
The Canadian Pacific Railway Company By 1878 Sir John A. and the Conservatives were back in power. In 1880 a new company, The Canadian Pacific Railway Company was created and worked out a deal with the Conservative government. There was still 4000 km of tracks to be laid and there were many building problems. 1) Northern Ontario workers had to cut down hills, fill in swamps, blast through very hard granite and lower lake levels. Northern Ontario rock was a major challenge. It took $7.5 million worth of dynamite to move the Ontario granite. 2) Crossing the Prairies workers were fired if they said something couldn’t be done. They were pushed almost to exhaustion to lay the tracks over the prairies 3) The Mountains The B.C. section of the line was the most difficult and dangerous. Wooden trestles had to be built over deep river canyons.
Chinese Workers To keep costs down on the railway, thousands of Chinese workers were brought in. Chinese workers had one major goal, earn enough money to return to China and buy a small plot of land. These workers were treated horribly in B.C. Most did not like the way the Chinese dressed, spoke and wore their hair. Chinese workers were paid less but given the most dangerous jobs to complete. Most never saved enough to return to China. They had to remain in B.C. where they were unwanted. Chinese workers laying tracks in B.C.
Poor Treatment of Chinese Workers Chinese workers pose on the CPR line Chinese workers laying tracks in B.C. Drawing of the poor treatment of the Chinese
Money Problems By 1885 the Canadian Pacific Railway (CPR) was facing some serious problems. Sections of track still had to be completed in Northern Ontario and B.C. Plus there was a shortage of money. Costs of laying the tracks through these areas had skyrocketed and people with money did not want to invest in the project. The opposition members of parliament were against the government lending any more money to the CPR. The owners of the CPR were able to gather $1 million of their own money to keep the railway going for another 3 weeks. Macdonald stepped in and argued the railway had already proven it’s worth and needed to be completed. The railway received one more loan from the government, enough to complete the job.
Chapter 12 -The Sod House Frontier Surveying the Land 1) The land was divided into township. Each township was a square who’s sides were nearly 10km in length 2) Each township was subdivided into 36 sections. A section was a perfect square with each side measuring l.6 km. 3) Each section was then divided into quarters. A quarter section contained 65 ha. Each quarter was marked out by direction such as northwest (NW) and southeast (SE).
The Dominion Act and Building a Home The Dominion Land Act was passed in 1872. It said any adult, or head of a family, could claim a quarter section of land. Homesteaders could choose only from the land set aside for homesteads. You had to; A) live on the for six months a year. B) build a house. C) start to cultivate the land. If the settlers carried out these conditions in three years, full ownership was turned over to them. If the homesteaders wanted they could buy more land cheaply for about $5 a hectare. With no wood to build houses or burn for fuel, settlers had to use prairie sod and burn dried buffalo manure. Sod houses were cheap since all the material that went into them was free. They stayed warm in the winter and cool in the summer. There were very few windows in sod building because the holes would weaken the walls. They were completely fireproof, but when it rained outside, it would rain inside the next day. Mice and insects sometimes came with the sod.
1800’s Steam Locomotive Dugout Sod house on the Prairies Trestle over a river canyon