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Monarchism

Monarchism is support for Canada’s system of government as a constitutional monarchy. Monarchism is distinct from royalism in that it is support for monarchy as a political institution, rather than for an individual monarch. Monarchism played a key role in the development of Canada and continues to be part of political and popular discourse.

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Iconic Highways in Canada

Canada’s most iconic highways were all built in the 20th or 21st centuries. Before the car became popular, good roads were hard to find once you left a city. As simple as they seem, it’s expensive to build and maintain roads. Rural routes were often treacherous for travellers.

Modern highways connect our massive country. A few of them stand out for their length, origins, or wondrous landscapes.

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Mammoth

Mammuthus is an extinct genus of proboscideans closely related to living elephants. Two species of mammoth lived in Canada: the Columbian mammoth (Mammuthus columbi) and the woolly mammoth (M. primigenius). The earliest record of Mammuthus is from the Pliocene epoch (5.3–2.6 million years ago). Most mammoth populations were extinct by the end of the Pleistocene epoch (about 10,000 years ago). In Canada, mammoth fossils have been found in Yukon, the Northwest Territories, British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba and Ontario. Later records of mammoths in Alberta overlap in time with archaeological records of Indigenous people. However, while there is evidence that people hunted mammoths elsewhere in North America, to date no similar evidence has been found in Canada.

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Unemployment Relief Camps

During the Great Depression, the federal government sanctioned the creation of a system of unemployment relief camps, where in exchange for room-and-board, single men did physically demanding labour. The government was criticized for establishing the camps rather than addressing the need for reasonable work and wages.

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Winnipeg Blue Bombers

The Winnipeg Blue Bombers are a football team that plays in the Canadian Football League (CFL). Located in WinnipegManitoba, the Blue Bombers have alternated between the league’s West Division and East Division. They have been part of the West Division since 2014. Since its founding in 1930, the team has won 12 Grey Cup championships. In 2019, the team won its first Grey Cup since 1990 when it defeated the Hamilton Tiger-Cats 33–12. After the 2020 season was cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Blue Bombers defeated Hamilton in the 2021 Grey Cup by a score of 33–25. It marked the team’s first back-to-back championship since 1962, and the first in the CFL since the Montreal Alouettes in 2010.

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Toronto Star

Founded in 1892, the Toronto Star (originally the Evening Star and later the Toronto Daily Star) grew under the direction of Joseph E. Atkinson, who became editor and manager of the newspaper in 1899. The newspaper was officially named the Toronto Star in 1971. As of April 2015, the Toronto Star is Canada’s largest daily newspaper.

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Pipelines in Canada

Pipelines are systems of connected pipes used to transport liquids and gases — namely oil and natural gas — across long distances from source to market. More than 840,000 km of pipelines criss-cross the country. They represent part of the oil and gas sector which directly and indirectly employs approximately 740,000 people. According to Natural Resources Canada, the sector earns the government an average of $20 billion in royalties, fees and taxes each year (see Natural Resources in Canada). It also contributes nearly 11 per cent of Canada’s gross domestic product.

Pipelines, however, have been controversial in Canada. Pipelines help transport fossil fuels and research indicates that fossil fuel use, is significantly contributing to climate change. In recent years, Indigenous groups, environmentalists, municipalities and labour unions have opposed numerous pipeline projects due to the risk of contaminated local waterways from spills and leaks. (See also Environmental Movement in Canada).

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Railway Disasters

​Railway accidents may result from a number of situations, including improper track beds, metal fatigue, fire, flawed rails, human error and frail bridges.

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Star Weekly

The Toronto Star Weekly began publication in April 1910 in Toronto. Founded by Joseph E. Atkinson, the Toronto Star Weekly was an attempt to create a Sunday newspaper. The Toronto Star Weekly changed its name to the Star Weekly in 1938. The newspaper ceased publication in 1973.

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Parti Québécois

The Parti Québécois (PQ) is a nationalist (see Francophone Nationalism in Quebec) political party formed in Quebec in 1968 through the merger of the Mouvement souveraineté-association (see Sovereignty-Association) and the Ralliement national. René Lévesque was the PQ’s first leader and held that position until 1985. The party was elected to its first term in office in 1976 and went on to hold two referendums on Quebec sovereignty: one in 1980 and the other in 1995. (See Quebec Referendum (1980); Quebec Referendum (1995).) Since October 2020, the party leader is Paul St-Pierre Plamondon.

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Governor General of Canada

Canada is a constitutional monarchy. As such, there is a clear division between the head of state and the head of government. The head of government is the prime minister, an elected political leader. The head of state is the Canadian monarch. Their duties are carried out by the governor general, who acts as the representative of the Crown — currently Elizabeth II — in Canada. (Lieutenant-Governors fulfill the same role in provincial governments.) The governor general performs a wide array of ceremonial duties. They also fulfill an important role in upholding the traditions of Parliament and other democratic institutions. Inuk leader Mary Simon was formally installed as Canada’s 30th Governor General on 26 July 2021. She is the first Indigenous person to hold Canada’s vice-regal position.

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Victoria Day

Victoria Day is a statutory holiday remembered informally as "the twenty-fourth of May,” or “May Two-Four.” Originally a celebration of Queen Victoria's birthday, the holiday now marks Queen Elizabeth II's birthday as well. Victoria Day was established as a holiday in the Province of Canada in 1845 and as a national holiday in 1901. It is observed on the first Monday before 25 May.

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Canada and the Holocaust

The Holocaust is defined as the systematic persecution and murder of 6 million Jews and 5 million non-Jews, including Roma and Sinti, Poles, political opponents, LGBTQ people and Soviet prisoners of war (POWs), by Nazi Germany from 1933 to 1945. Jews were the only group targeted for complete destruction. Nazi racial ideology considered them subhuman. Though Jewish Canadians did not experience the Holocaust directly, the majority endured anti-Semitism in Canada. Jewish Canadians were only one generation removed from lands under German occupation from 1933 to 1945. They maintained close ties to Jewish relatives in those lands. These ties affected the community’s response to the Holocaust. There was, for instance, a disproportionate representation of Jews in the Canadian armed forces. Jewish Canadians were also heavily involved in postwar relief efforts for displaced persons and Holocaust survivors in Europe.

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Salamander

Salamander is a common name for most members of the tailed amphibia (order Caudata). There are about 410 species worldwide; 21 are native to Canada. Salamanders are found mainly in the temperate regions of the Northern Hemisphere and tropical South and Central America. In the latter, salamanders have radiated and the region contains more than a third of the species in the world. In Canada, salamanders are found from the Maritimes to British Columbia and north to central Labrador and northern British Columbia; none have been recorded on the island of Newfoundland.

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Canada and the Cold War

The Cold War refers to the period between the end of the Second World War and the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991. During this time, the world was largely divided into two ideological camps — the United States-led capitalist “West” and the Soviet-dominated communist “East.” Canada aligned with the West. Its government structure, politics, society and popular perspectives matched those in the US, Britain, and other democratic countries. The global US-Soviet struggle took many different forms and touched many areas. It never became “hot” through direct military confrontation between the two main antagonists.

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Walnut

Walnut (Juglans), genus of trees of the walnut family (Juglandaceae). The roughly 15 known species are widely dispersed through temperate and tropical regions.