Laurier’s Sunny Ways
The 1891 election was largely fought out over the issue of continentalism versus
continued support for the National Policy.
-tariffs will create a national, Canadian economy by protecting and encouraging
manufacturing in the east and providing guaranteed markets and exports of
staple goods from the West
-John A. MacDonald died in June 1982 and the conservative party entered a crisis
Laurier’s Sunny Ways: Sought compromise on issues that divided the nation,
like the Manitoba schools question which ended wit the Laurier- Greenway
Manitoba Schools Question
-Would French language and culture survive in Western Canada?
-Public Schools Act, 1890 and abolished French as official language
-series of litigations over legality of abolition
-feds could intervene if constitution not followed …. But would it?
-major election question in 1896
The Laurier- Greenway Compromise ended the Manitoba schools question.
The Laurier- Greenway Compromise
-catholic instruction allowed in public schools
-french as teaching language allowed
-school by school basis
-catholic school board without public funding
The Laurier Boom:
Under Laurier’s watch, and the adoption of parts of the National Policy, Canada
experienced unprecedented expantion.
-cows on 5 street, Ottawa, July 1900
-idealized image of Vancouver for advertising purposes, 1898
Immigration and the Settlement of the West
The geography of the western Canada can be divided into three main categories:
arid, short grass prairie, and park land (long grass prairie)
-Mennonite Settlements (began in 1873)
-Russian Doukhobors bound for Canada in 1898
-Icelandic settlement at Gimli, Manitoba in mid 1870
-Mormons settled in Alberta at Cardston, Sterling, and Magarth beginning in
1887 The Immigration Boom: 1896-1911
-industrial revolution in Europe
-farm land depleting
-best land was in Canada- after the closure of the American frontier in 1890
The Staple Cash Crop: Wheat
-Red Fife Wheat had been brought to upper Canada by Duncan Fife (Scotland) in
the early 19 C
-The Prairies needed a spring wheat that would mature earlier through a short
growing season but provide equal quality
-Canadian government instrumental in providing the strain of wheat necessary
for prairie conditions through experimental farm stations
Marquis Wheat, developed by Charles E. Saunders in 1908, was the answer as it
matured one week earlier than Red Fife.
-Laurier’s Minister of the Interior
-responsible for settling the West
-two tenets of his policy: free land and the Railway reserves
Laurier’s and Sifton’s Immigration policy differed mainly in the degree of
marketing and opening immigration to the Eastern Europeans.
Sifton encouraged immigration from the European countries while discouraging
immigration of Asians, blacks, Italians, and urban Englishmen… he had a very
specific idea on the “perfect” immigrant.
Immigration policy discriminated against specific groups: Chinese, Jews, east
Indians, and African Americans.
Social Darwinism applied the principles of evolution to human relations and
The Social Gospel Movement applied Christian principles to correct social ills.
Social gospellers believed:
-people are inherently good
-people err because of their environment and social conditions
-changing the social environment will help improve social ills The Women’s Christian Temperance Union preached temperance in all things
to promote the greater moral good.
-Women were prominent in the social reform movement because it was a natural
extension of their role as mothers in society
Canada, the Second British Empire, and the Boer War
-the imperial century (1815-1914)
-defeat of major European rival
-unchallenged sea power
Imperial Defence Issues
-ASIA: East Indian Company
-AUSTRALASIA: Naval Defence
-CARIBBEAN: Naval Defence
-AFRICA: The Scramble
-NORTH AMERICA: US Relations
Imperial Costs Mounting
-administrative and bureaucratic costs
-rebellions (Indian Mutiny, Sudan, Boxer)
-wars (crimea, Egypt, south Africa)
-metropolitan issues affecting imperial policy (Ireland, labour, poverty,
The End of the Pax Brittanica
-rising defense costs
-breakdown of continental order; ottoman empire, italy and germany,
industrialization of japan, Germany, USA
-German naval threat
-European alliances; triple alliance, triple entente
Canada Leading the Way
-New Zealand: 1907
-Union of South Africa: 1910 English Canadian Support
-British empire league