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First World War

The First World War of 1914–1918 was the bloodiest conflict in Canadian history, taking the lives of more than 60,000 Canadians. This collection brings together a number of our resources on the First World War.

Image above: Canadians soldiers advancing through German wire entanglements at Vimy Ridge. April, 1917. Canadian Department of National Defence/Library and Archives Canada/PA-001087.

Speech

Wilfrid Laurier: Let Them Become Canadians, 1905

On 1 September 1905, Wilfrid Laurier spoke before an audience of some 10,000 people in Edmonton, the newly minted capital of Alberta, which had just joined Confederation along with Saskatchewan. It had been 11 years since he’d last visited Edmonton, and he remarked that so much had changed in that time. He noted the growth of cities in the West, as well as the development of industry and transportation, agriculture and trade there. “Gigantic strides are made on all sides over these new provinces,” he said. It was a crowning moment of a movement — to colonize the West — and Laurier was there to thank the immigrants and settlers who had made that possible. Though the Laurier government’s immigration policies championed the arrival of some and barred the landing of others, his comments on acceptance in this speech served as a better model to follow.

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Transportation in the North

Inuit and subarctic Indigenous peoples have traversed the North since time immemorial. Indigenous knowledge and modes of transportation helped early European explorers and traders travel and survive on these expanses. Later settlement depended to an extraordinary degree on the development of transportation systems. Today, the transportation connections of northern communities vary from place to place. While the most remote settlements are often only accessible by air, some have road, rail and marine connections. These are often tied to industrial projects such as mines.

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Reciprocity

Reciprocity was a free trade agreement between the United States and Canada. It mutually reduced import duties and protective tariffs on certain goods exchanged between the two countries. It was in effect from 1854 to 1866 and was controversial at times on both sides of the border. It was replaced in 1878 by the Conservative Party’s protectionist National Policy. It involved levying tariffs on imported goods to shield Canadian manufacturers from American competition. A narrower reciprocity agreement was introduced in 1935 and expanded in 1938. However, it was suspended in 1948 after both countries signed the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT).

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Early-Warning Radar

Air-defence radar stations were first established in Canada along the Atlantic and Pacific coasts in 1942, but were dismantled following the defeat of Germany and Japan in 1945.

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Art and Decoration

The decorative arts, it is commonly assumed, have two features that are at odds with what we think of as fine art: decorative art is typically associated with function and its purpose is to project a style or mood rather than to transmit meaning and incite dialogue.

Macleans

CIBC-TD Merger

This article was originally published in Maclean’s magazine on April 27, 1998. Partner content is not updated.

This time, Paul Martin kept his cool. Last January, the Bank of Montreal and Royal Bank announced plans to merge and create one superbank, with assets of $453 billion.

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Canuck

“Canuck” is a nickname for a Canadian — sometimes bearing a negative implication, more often wielded with pride. It goes back at least as far as the 1830s, and its meaning has changed over time. The word “Canuck” may be most familiar today as the name of a National Hockey League franchise, the Vancouver Canucks (see British Columbia). In the 20th century, the term enjoyed a much broader use.

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Polish Music in Canada

The first Polish settlement in Canada was established by Kashubian peasants in the early 1860s in Renfrew County, south of Pembroke, Ont. In 1875 a Polish parish was organized and a church built at the place which became the village of Wilno in the 1880s.

Macleans

Melatonin Banned

This article was originally published in Maclean’s magazine on December 18, 1995. Partner content is not updated.

That frustration is fuelled not only by melatonin's proven ability to counter insomnia and jet lag, but also by an array of experts touting it as a wonder drug that can extend life and help to combat a wide variety of illnesses, including AIDS, cancer and epilepsy.

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Aviation

   Aviation, the art and science of flying, has been a practical reality since the early 20th century. Canadians have participated in its development almost from its inception.

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Canadian Aviation Disasters

There have been many tragic events in Canada’s aviation history. Some of these have involved Canadian aircraft, commercial as well as non-commercial. In other cases, many Canadians have died in the crash of a non-Canadian aircraft. Crashes that occurred over Canadian soil, or search and rescue efforts in which Canadians have played a large part, are also part of this history.