HIST 261:Effects of WWI 1
Effects of WWI
February 5th 2014
Canada during the war
Inflation was very high, factory workers felt they weren’t getting their fair share of the profits. Factory
workers were not allowed to strike.
1913: end of expansion, economic downturn would last till 1915. Unemployment issues were ignored,
during the war, federal government assumed a more important role in daily lives. Building tradesmen
were rarely able to make end meet.
Industrialization was prominent in Winnipeg, Class divisions began to form. These division were also
spatial (poor lived in north).
● North End was overcrowded
● Tradesmen made more, but no safety regulations, owner could buy labour, which meant there
was little attempt to pay minimum wage, give reasonable hours, or keep workers safe.
● J.S. Woodsworth: tried to fight industrialization with religion
Feb 1919: West was more radical than the east. They called for one union for all workers , 30 hour
workweek, allowed strikes.
● 2 months later: Winnipeg General Strike
Winnipeg General Strike
● Winnipeg was a key part of the railway, was a transfer point, In 1911 the city had a population
of 136,035, 22% were non-Anglo-Saxons
● Government officials sided with business
● The General Strike was promoted as an effective weapon against management. No one really
gave much thought to a political and social implications of a general strike.
● West Unions were moving closing to bolshevism.
● Over 22,000 workers decided to strike on May 6th. By May 15th, the city was shut down. The
Police continued to work, and a strike paper began, explaining the goals of the strike, the daily