27 January 2014 Hist 261
Laying the Foundations for a Western Wheat Economy (1870-1900)
Early Aspects of Settlement
The Dominion Land
Act (1872) set it up so
that any man could
buy 160acres of land
from the government
for 10$ if they agreed
to some conditions:
• They must live
on the land for
3 years (to
the same land
• They must
build on the
clear a certain
amount of the
56 million acres of
land was settled this
The HBC got 50,000 acres from the Transfer around its posts and 1/20 of the Fertile Belt (6.6
million Acres). The School land reserves were allotted 9 million acres and the CPR got 40 miles
of land on each side of the tracks.
He was the minister of the interior under Sir Wilfrid Laurier and had the good luck to be in
charge when gold was discovered along the Fraser River and in the Yukon. CND was still undergoing the process of industrialization and urbanization at this time which was about the
same time that the American Frontier was ‘closed’ (there was no more free land available),
which allowed CND to market itself as “The Last Best West”.
Early immigrants found an established transportation system, innovative farming techniques
suitable for CND growing seasons (the government had previously set up scientific farms where
they discovered the best grains to grow in the region as well as which methods worked the
best), mechanized and semi-mechanized operations9idnustrial farmers) and a grain handling
and grading system.
Few immigrants were explicitly excluded, and those that Sifton believed would make strong
reliable and independent farmers were very much encouraged. Especially those that had a
small ‘L’ Liberal attitude, that they should pull themselves up by their own boot straps and not
expect handouts from the government.
Americans were also a large immigrant group, though they were Americans in name only.
American Immigration Yearly To CND West
40-50000 Yearly until 1905/6
Rise of American immigration/ colonization companies was encouraged by CND government.
These companies would go around America and encouraged whole towns to relocate to CND.
By 1905 Americans were the largest immigrant group and they brought with them their ideas
British immigrants had varies experiences and backgrounds before deciding to immigrate to
CND. Some were from wealthy families whose estates could no longer support them, some had
knowledge in farming. But many were from the urban working class with little capital and less
farming experience. Some of the British immigrants were what the British government called the
“Home Children”, these were the children from large working class families whose parents had,
died deserted them or who could not support them all. The British government rounded the
Home Children up and sent them to live out West in