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Great Depression;


									Citizenship of Section II: Relationship to Essential Graduation Learning’s of Grade 122
                                    Canadian History

                           Storypath: The Great Depression

                                  Stacey Alexander

                                  Robyn Donaldson

Dr. Sharon Murray                                                October 28, 2008

This Storypath will be in the Citizenship of Section II: Relationship to Essential
Graduation Learning’s of Grade 122 Canadian History Curriculum Guide. One aspect of
this sections looks at the Great Depression and its social, political and economic forces
on Canada. Although the Great Depression in Canada seems very broad there will be a
focus on some of the collective events that socially, politically or economically created
the Great Depression such as the Wall Street crash, the wheat crop crash, the “On to
Ottawa trek”, confederation of Newfoundland, and World War II.

Assigned Readings

Students will be given two readings for the next class. One that everyone will read that
sets the scene (appendix 1) and another reading that relates to a specific event(s)
(appendices 2-6). Every student will read at least one of the event readings. Students will
be grouped accordingly. (There should be at least one student in each group that has done
one of the specific event readings.)

Possible Critical Incidences

After the class has completed their assigned readings the teacher will give options for
critical incidents. This incident should be one that strongly influenced the social,
economic, or political aspects of Canada during the Great Depression. The class will
collectively make a decision which incident they want to do. Suggestions are as follows:

   -   Wall Street Crash
   -   Wheat Crop Crash
   -   Beginning of World War II
   -   Confederation of Newfoundland

Storypath Episodes

There should be at least five members in each group. These groups will be assigned one
the storypath episodes. Suggested episodes are as follows:

   *Creating the Setting - Students create the setting by completing a frieze (mural) or
   other visual representation of the place.

   Creating Characters - Students create characters for the story whose roles they will
   play during subsequent episodes.

   The Main Event - Students create an event that symbolizes the critical incident such
   as creating a story/ play for the characters in the “Creating Characters” Storypath
*Context Building (living museum) - Students are involved in activities that stimulate
them to think more deeply about the people and the places involved in the critical
incident such as clothing and artifacts.

Time line – Students create a timeline leading up to and after the critical event. The
timeline should be visually appealing with pictures, and should not be fixed (i.e. you
can add and move different events within timeline.)

Word Wall – Students will create categories for words that were of importance
throughout their readings. They will then group specific words into these categories.

Students will be given class time to complete their assigned episode. Once each group
has completed their episodes they will present them to the class.

*Students will be given pictures for these episodes depending upon the chosen critical
event. They must critically analyze and compare these photos in order to properly
create their Storypath Episode(appendices 7-10)

Appendix 1

Great Depression:
Junior Canadian Encyclopedia (2002) 01-01-2002

Great Depression


The Great Depression was a severe, world wide economic crisis which lasted from the
end of 1929 to the outbreak of World War II. It began dramatically on October 24, 1929,
with the collapse of the stock market in the United States. This was followed by bank
failures around the world, falling prices for most goods, massive wage cuts, and

             Destitute Family, Great Depression
             Destitute family returning to Saskatoon from the north during Great
             Depression (courtesy Glenbow Archives).

The Wall Street crash did not cause the Depression, but it triggered a chain of events. The
1920s had been boom times in Canada, and 1929 began as the best year yet. Factories
were busy and western farmers were getting high prices for their wheat. In 1928 Canada's
farmers produced a huge wheat crop. Suddenly there was an enormous glut of wheat on
the world market. Wheat fell from $1.61 a bushel in 1929 to 38¢ a bushel in 1932.
        Dust Bowl
        The prairie dry belt was unwisely opened for homesteading and was struck by
        successive droughts in the 1920s that contributed to hardships during the Depression
        (courtesy PAA).

Meanwhile, in Ontario and Quebec, manufacturers could no longer sell their products.
They cut back production, lowered wages, and laid off workers.

Within nine months of the stock market crash, all of North America and the world was in
the grip of the Depression.

Financial Collapse

Canada suffered as much as any country. Its economy depended on producing natural
resources, such as wheat, minerals, and timber. When prices for these goods fell on the
international market, Canada was hard hit. People had less money to spend on consumer
goods, so manufacturing suffered. Factories closed. Construction of new homes and
buildings stopped. There was no unemployment insurance, no welfare, no medicare, no
job-creation programs.

By 1933, 30% of the labour force was jobless, not counting farmers or fishermen.

Depression in the West

The Canadian West was stricken as hard as anywhere in the world. In addition to falling
prices for grain, the Prairies suffered from almost ten years of drought. Prairie winds
stripped off the dry topsoil and blew it away in huge black clouds that darkened the sky
as far away as Halifax, N.S.

Many farmers abandoned their farms and desperately tried to find a place to start over.
Government and Politics

By 1934, the economy seemed to have hit rock bottom. Every city and town had soup
kitchens. Thousands of young men "rode the rails," "hitching onto empty boxcars, riding
across Canada looking for work. Governments tried to provide" "relief" "for this misery.
They handed out payments, clothing, and food."

             Depression Soup Kitchen
             Unemployment victims during the Depression resorted to the soup
             kitchens like this one in Montreal in 1931, operated by voluntary and
             church organizations. After a meal, most people returned to the alleyways,
             parks, or flop-houses for the night (National Archives of Canada/PA-

The federal government, under Prime Minister R.B. Bennett, set up work camps, mostly
out of concern that the unemployed were a menace to public order. The work camps were
located in isolated areas. The unemployed were not forced to go there, but they had little
choice. In return for food, shelter, clothing, and 20¢ a day, the men laboured at road
clearing, wood cutting, and other chores.

The camps demoralized the young men. The work was meaningless. Discipline was
severe. Eventually the men rebelled. In the spring of 1935, relief camp workers in B.C.
staged a strike. They marched on Vancouver, then embarked on the famous On to Ottawa
Trek to demand government action.

The On to Ottawa Trek

The On to Ottawa Trek was stopped at Regina, but a small group went on to Ottawa to
meet Prime Minister Bennett. The meeting ended up in a shouting match. Shortly after,
police in Regina tried to break up a public meeting. A riot ensued that resulted in the
death of a policeman, numerous injuries, and the end of the workers' protest.
New Deal and New Parties

The chaos in the economy had led many people to question the whole political system. In
1930 they had voted out Mackenzie King, but his replacement, R.B. Bennett, had no
solutions to the misery. In 1935, with an election approaching, Bennett announced a
"New Deal" "for ending the Depression. But it was too little, too late. He too was

Political discontent in the West led to the creation of new political parties. The Co-
operative Commonwealth Federation (CCF), later to become the New Democratic Party,
was formed in 1932. It proposed a socialist program to end the Depression. It drew large
crowds and captured 30% of the vote in B.C. and 25% in Saskatchewan. In Alberta, a
preacher named Bill Aberhart formed the Social Credit Party and became premier in

The Depression Ends

The Depression finally lifted as the 1930s drew to a close. Prices for goods improved.
Farmers began to produce crops again. Unemployment lessened. But it was really the
outbreak of World War II, in 1939, which marked the end. The army provided jobs, and
the demand for munitions and supplies to fight a war breathed new life into Canadian

The Great Depression marked a turning point in the role of government in the economy.
All political parties realized that government must try to control economic growth and
take more responsibility for social welfare. Some immediate results were the creation of
the Bank of Canada and the Canadian Wheat Board, and the beginning of unemployment
insurance. For those who had suffered hardships, the scars of the "Dirty Thirties" "would
last a lifetime."


Financial CollapseDepression in the WestThe On to Ottawa TrekThe Depression
EndsGovernment and PoliticsNew Deal and New Parties
Historica Foundation of Canada
Appendix 2

History: DESPERATE JOURNEY: 'The On to Ottawa Trek' ended in the Regina
Maclean's 07-01-2002

PULLING DOWN THE BILL of his hat, Jack Geddes squinted against the Prairie wind.
Perched atop the boxcar of a moving train, Geddes could just make out the Alberta
foothills. Beyond them, through the thick, black smoke belching from the steam engine,
lay the snow-capped Rockies. Painfully hungry, the 18-year-old hobo lay back on the
boxcar's iron catwalk, covered himself with his Hudson's Bay blanket and let the rocking
train lull him to sleep. Two days to Vancouver, he thought. And if relief couldn't be
found there, well, there were always the "slave camps."

It was 1932 and Canada was in the relentless grip of the Great Depression. The country's
lifeblood -- exports of natural resources like wheat, lumber, fish and minerals -- had all
but dried up, plummeting in value from $1.12 billion in 1929 to $576 million. More than
one out of four people seeking work couldn't find any. Prime Minister R.B. Bennett's
Conservative government initially responded to the crisis in 1930 with $20 million for
public works projects. A huge sum for the time, but not nearly enough. Fear of
communist rabble-rousers stirring up the wandering unemployed prompted Bennett to
establish relief camps, later called slave camps by those who lived there. Run by the
Department of National Defence, the camps became powerful symbols of Ottawa's lack
of concern for the unemployed. In June, 1935, more than 1,000 of these desperate men
set out from B.C. to confront Bennett in the nation's capital. Fearing a snowballing
rebellion, the government waylaid the On to Ottawa Trek in Saskatchewan and, on the
July 1 holiday, crushed it in what became known as the Regina Riot, the most violent
episode of the Great Depression. One man died and more than 100 were injured.

The Dirty Thirties offered little hope for too many. There was no unemployment
insurance, no medical coverage, no old age pension. "There were no jobs and we weren't
wanted," says 85-year-old Gene Llewellyn, who as a 16-year-old in 1933 left his Terrace,
B.C., home to ease the burden on his parents. "We'd come into a town, and they'd run you

The only alternative to riding the rails or eking out an existence in the hobo jungles that
sprung up beside most major cities was to seek aid in the relief camps. No one expected
the camps -- established in October, 1932, to house and provide work for single,
unemployed homeless men -- to be around for very long. They were considered a
temporary solution because most believed the Depression itself would be temporary. But
by 1935 there were nearly 150 relief camps dotting the country, 53 of them in British
Columbia largely because of its warmer climate. Workers spent 44-hour weeks doing
construction or land clearing in exchange for three square meals and a 20-cent per day
allowance. For the men, the 20 cents solidified their belief they were working in slave
camps. While authorities prohibited any attempt to form unions, the harsh lifestyle
ironically gave organizations like the Communist Party of Canada a captive and receptive
audience. "These men were just like any of us," says Bill Waiser, author of Park
Prisoners, a book about how Canada's national parks were used as work camps. "They
wanted jobs, they wanted a home and a family. Putting the men in camps, you focus their
discontent. Then on come the communists who say, 'You're being exploited.' "

Still a proud member of the Communist Party, 90-year-old Robert "Doc" Savage of
Quesnel, B.C., can't recall who came up with the idea to take their demands to Bennett's
desk in Ottawa. Savage simply remembers organizing 400 men on the morning of June 3,
1935, and leading them -- along with more than 1,000 others -- onto the boxcars and out
of Vancouver's rail yard singing the union hymn: Hold the fort, for we are coming. Union
men be strong. Side by side we battle onward. Victory will come. "We were joyous,"
says Geddes who grew up in Calgary but now lives in White Rock, B.C. "We were going
to Ottawa and we were going to lay our problems at the feet of R.B. Bennett."

People along the way prepared a welcome at nearly every stop. The local press called the
trekkers "our boys" and westerners, who identified with their issues, generally embraced
them. And at most stops, more single unemployed men piled onto the boxcars and joined
the journey.

Ottawa believed the protest would run out of steam before the mountains. But when the
train descended from the Rockies into Calgary, Bennett's home riding, the prime minister
prepared for a confrontation. Unwilling to risk the political fallout of a Calgary
showdown, Bennett decided to draw the line in Regina. On June 14, the 50-car freight
rolled into the Queen City. After the marchers disembarked to stretch their legs, Bennett
banned them from getting back on. Stalling for time in the hope the trek would fizzle out
peacefully, the prime minister invited a contingent of strikers, including Savage, to meet
with him in Ottawa. Eight of the leaders sat down with Bennett for an hour on June 22,
but the tone of the meeting was belligerent and ended in bitter failure.

Returning to Regina, Savage and the leaders faced new challenges. Their transportation
had been cut off, the exits to the city blocked and rumours surfaced that a relief camp was
being prepared to intern them all. Recognizing defeat, the trek leaders promised to
disband provided they could leave Regina. The RCMP refused, insisting the only place
the 2,000 men were going was to a specially prepared camp in Lumsden, 25 km
northwest of Regina.

On July 1, after hours of bitter discussions with local officials, the march leaders called a
meeting. That evening, between 1,500 and 2,000 people filled Regina's Market Square.
Most, though, were townsfolk with their families observing the local drama on the
holiday Monday. As for the trekkers, most of them were watching a baseball game in
another part of the city. More than 300 RCMP dressed in riot gear were concealed in
large moving vans parked on three sides of the square, with another 50 nearby on horses.
Dozens of local police waited in a garage right off the square.

As one of the leaders took the stage and began to speak, a whistle blew. Using baseball
bats and billy clubs, the police waded into the crowd. "They opened the door and out they
come beating the hell out of us," remembers Geddes. "They chased us all over town."
RCMP threw teargas into Market Square to break up the crowd and the riot spilled into
adjoining streets. A pitched battle raged for more than three hours. At one point, several
people set upon a plain-clothes policeman and beat him to death. Late into the night, as
about 300 rioters cornered a small troop of police, the commanding officer ordered his
men to fire over the crowd's heads. Seventeen people were wounded, including five
Regina residents. By morning, among the more than 100 people sent to hospital were 40
police. "The amount of people I saw with their heads bashed in was terrible, really
terrible," recalls Geddes.

The march had been crushed and some of its leaders arrested. But the severity of the riot
sobered both protestors and government. The trekkers were allowed to return home or to
the B.C. relief camps. Bennett, blaming the riot on communist agitators, endorsed an
inquiry that whitewashed the authorities of any wrongdoing. According to Waiser, a
University of Saskatchewan history professor: "In truth, it was a police-provoked riot.
They raided a peaceful meeting and the people fought back."

Bennett, however, did not escape the fallout. In the federal election campaign three
months after the Regina Riot, the prime minister promised radical reforms, including
health and unemployment insurance as well as a minimum wage. But it was too late. In
October, 1935, William Lyon Mackenzie King soundly defeated Bennett.

Less than a year later, a federal investigation concluded that maintaining the relief camps
was no longer "in the best interests of the state." After housing 170,000 men over 3 1/2
years, they were closed. But for many of the hopeless men who lived in them and took
part in the protest, the trek had provided a purpose. "We were pretty militant, but we had
a reason to be," says Llewellyn. "If you were going hungry in the richest country in the
world you would have done it too."
Appendix 3

                         Newfoundland History
      The Great Depression, Economic Collapse in Newfoundland and
            Newfoundland's Loss of Responsible Government

[The text was published in 1950. For the full citation, see the end of the document. Parts
in brackets [...] and links have been added to the original document by Claude Bélanger.]

Economic Collapse

During the decade 1920-30 the Newfoundland Government had greatly extended its
obligations. The Newfoundland Railway, after years of unsuccessful financing, was
finally unable to carry on and in 1923 was taken over by the Government with all its
subsidiary enterprises including coastal steamships. During the next ten years the
Government poured an average of $1,000,000 a year into the Railway. The
Newfoundland Royal Commission of 1933 estimated that the net cost of the Railway to
the country since its inception was $42,500,000, of which $39,500,000 was included in
the national debt. The Government had also embarked on a program of road building for
which another $10,700,000 had been borrowed. Thus in 1933 close to half the total debt
was directly chargeable to railways and highways.

It was a period of easy borrowing. Between 1920 and 1932 the public debt doubled and
the average budget deficit on current account was $2,000,000; by 1932, 56 p.c. of the
average revenue over these years was needed to meet interest charges. Fully 95 p.c. of the
debt was held externally.

Thus when the depression struck in 1929-30, Newfoundland was in an extremely
vulnerable position. In three years the value of exports dropped from about $39,200,000
to about $22,800,000; in two years the export prices of dried cod had been cut in half. By
the winter of 1932-33 a quarter of the population was on government relief. Public
revenues dropped from about $11,600,000 in 1929-30 to less than $8,000,000 in 1931-32.
Despite heroic retrenchment the Government could not carry on financially, and its credit
was at an end. In 1933, the new Government requested the United Kingdom Government
to appoint a Royal Commission to investigate the financial situation and make
recommendations. [See this site on the conditions leading to the collapse of Responsible
Government in Newfoundland ]

Loss of Responsible Government

[Mel Baker has analyzed the events leading to the loss of Responsible Government at this
address.] Although recognizing the Island 's inherent economic difficulties, the main
remedies proposed by the Commission were constitutional and financial. The
constitutional recommendations were that Newfoundland should be "given a rest from
party politics", that the existing form of government should be suspended until such time
as the Island should again be self-supporting, and a special Commission of Government,
composed of six members, three from Newfoundland and three from the United
Kingdom, under the chairmanship of the Governor, should be established to govern the
Island under the supervision of the Dominions Office. With regard to finance, it was
recommended that the United Kingdom Government should assume general
responsibility for the Island's finances until such time as Newfoundland should be self-
supporting again, it being understood that responsible government would then, on request
of the people of Newfoundland, be restored. These recommendations were approved by
the newly elected Newfoundland Legislature and implemented by the United Kingdom
Parliament in the Newfoundland Act, 1933.

The Commission of Government took office on Feb. 16, 1934, and governed the Island
until union with Canada became effective on Mar. 31, 1949. The Commission was faced
with abnormal difficulties due to world trade conditions which severely limited the
market for salt cod. The Commission's first task was to give assistance to the fishing
industry by first building and later subsidizing the construction of fishing vessels and by
creating the Fisheries Board, under which marked progress was made in improving
standards of production and methods of marketing. By 1939, though prices were still low,
the industry was much better organized to meet new conditions of international trade.

An effort was also made to improve farming through education, cash bonuses and a
scheme of land settlement. Little could be done for the forest industries since most of the
forest land was already controlled by the paper industry, and its output depended on
foreign markets. Geological survey was extended and new ore bodies investigated. The
main line of the railway was restored to pre-depression standards, several new coastal
steamers were added to the service, and local roads were provided for communities in
urgent need of transportation to rail or steamer ports. A further accomplishment was the
improvement in public services. Expenditures on health and education were doubled. The
Civil Service was reorganized and methods of administration were greatly improved. [On
the history of the Commission of Government, see the article by Mel Baker.]
Appendix 4

With so much economic pressure and upset the country turned to politics to hopefully
clean up the situation that they were facing every day. The country removed their past
political party run by Mackenzie King and brought in the conservative Lawyer, Richard
Bennett, hoping that he could make a difference.
             Richard Bennett and Mackenzie King in Power
Richard Bennett was brought into power when his opposition, Mackenzie King, reported
that he would not give "a five-cent piece" to "any Tory Government". This remark was
exactly what Bennett and his party needed to come into power and that is what happened
in 1930. In the election, the conservatives got 137 seats in parliament and the Liberal
representation was 88 seats. It was Bennett's confidence and energy that inspired
Canadians to vote for Bennett.

Bennett was an "abrupt, headstrong, millionaire lawyer from Calgary"3 who dramatized
King's slip as an example of tired cynicism and he accused the liberals of being unwilling
and incapable of dealing with the pressures of the Depression. To get the people on his
side, Bennett promised work, to promote the strengthening of Canada's industry behind
tariff walls, and to "blast (Canada's) way into the markets of the world."

Bennett's first plan was to raise tariffs and in theory this would protect manufactures. He
also believed this action would convince other nations to lower tariffs on Canadian
goods. Unfortunately the side effects of his plan produced more damage then good. It did
nothing to increase exports and in some cases increased export's costs, thereby reducing
business. While the high tariffs might protect the domestic market the market was no
sufficiently large enough to consume enough manufactured goods and therefore gave no
longer significant life to the dyeing economy of Canada. In 1933 he was called the Nadir
of Depression and became the but of endless jokes. Cars that were having to be towed by
horses because gasoline could not be afforded were called "Bennett Buggies".

Bennett's other plan to hopefully get the economy on an up rise again was to start the
New Policy in 1935 which was taken off the idea of the American New Deal. It was to
insure unemployment insurance, a reduced workweek, and minimum wage, industrial
codes and a permanent economic planning.

This policy didn't work and could not save the Conservatives or Bennett's place in
politics. Many of the voters turned to three small parties: the Reconstruction party, which
was a Conservative offshoot; the Cooperative Commonwealth Federation, which was a
socialist group; and the Social Credit Party, which was a right-winged radical movement
in Alberta. Almost by default King and the Liberals won the election of 1935 and were in
power again. Bennett continued ineffectively as an opposition leader until 1938 when he
abandoned Canada to England.
King dropped the new deal and declared it unconstitutional in 1937 and instead made the
new Reciprocity Treaty with the United States. He converted the radio commission to
The Canadian Broadcasting Corporation and fully nationalized the Bank of Canada.
Finally he fended off provincial demands for more money to support relief programs for
the unemployed.
Appendix 5

Canada in World War II


The BCATP was an outstanding success. By the end of the war, it had graduated 131,533
pilots, observers, flight engineers, and other aircrew for the air forces of Canada, Britain,
Australia, and New Zealand. While over half the BCATP graduates came from the North
American continent, the plan trained personnel from all over the world including about
2,000 French, 900 Czechoslovakians, 680 Norwegians, 450 Poles, and about the same
number of Belgians and Dutch.

      72,835 graduates joined the Royal Canadian Air Force
      42,110 graduates joined the Royal Air Force
      9,606 joined the Royal Australian Air Force
      7,002 joined the Royal New Zealand Air Force


During the Second World War, Canadian industries manufactured war materials and
other supplies for Canada, the United States, Britain, and other Allied countries. The total
value of Canadian war production was almost $10 billion - approximately $100 billion in
today's dollars.

Out of Canada's population of 11.3 million, the total number of workers engaged in
essential war industries was 1,049,876, with approximately 2,100,000 more engaged full-
time in what was called "essential civilian employment", which included agriculture,
communications, and food processing.

      Britain had entered the war with 80,000 military vehicles of all types; however,
       75,000 of these British vehicles were left behind in the evacuation at Dunkirk in
       1940. Virtually defenceless on the ground, Britain turned to Canada - and
       particularly the Canadian auto industry - to replace what had been lost. Canada
       not only replaced these losses, it did much more.
      Canadian industry produced over 800,000 military transport vehicles, 50,000
       tanks, 40,000 field, naval, and anti-aircraft guns, and 1,700,000 small arms.
      Of the 800,000 military vehicles of all types built in Canada, 168,000 were issued
       to Canadian forces. Thirty-eight percent of the total Canadian production went to
       the British. The remainder of the vehicles went to the other Allies. This meant that
       the Canadian Army 'in the field' had a ratio of one vehicle for every three soldiers,
       making it the most mechanized field force in the war.
      The Bombardier company of Valcourt, Quebec, built over 150 military
       snowmobiles. General Motors developed a frame for another snowmobile, of
       which 300 were built.
      Canadian Pacific Railway constructed 788 Valentine tanks in its Angus shop in
       Montreal; its engine was built by General Motors. 5,200 tanks had been built at
       C.P. Angus and Montreal Locomotive Company shops by the end of the war.
      2,150 twenty-five pounder "Sexton" self-propelled guns were built by Montreal
       Locomotive Works.
      A heavy utility vehicle body was developed in Canada. Four-thousand such
       vehicles were manufactured by General Motors in Oshawa. This vehicle body
       could be mounted on a 4x4 chassis and could, with slight modifications, be used
       as a personnel carrier, ambulance, light wireless, truck or machinery truck.

Canadian Firefighters

Persistent German bombing of cities and factories caused great damage in Britain.
Canada sought to give help and the Corps of (Civilian) Canadian Firefighters was
organized in 1942 to help British firefighters combat the fires caused by the bombing.

      422 men volunteered for the Corps. Only half of these volunteers were
       professional firefighters; the other half had no experience.
      The volunteer firemen received $1.30 pay per day from the Canadian government.
       They received no training other than what the Veteran firefighters could teach
      There were 11 casualties, including three deaths, in the Corps of Canadian
       Firefighters overseas.


Representatives of several organizations served overseas to provide support to Canadian
troops. Although their jobs were often away from the front lines, their work could often
be hazardous.

      585 volunteers from the Canadian Legion War Services Incorporated, the Knights
       of Columbus, the Salvation Army, and the YMCA set up canteens and reading
       rooms for soldiers. Throughout their volunteer duty, they suffered 71 casualties,
       including eight dead.
      Medical personnel with the Red Cross and St. John Ambulance Brigade also
       served. They acted as assistants to nurses and ambulance drivers.
Appendix 6

The Great Crash

In late October of 1929, terror seized the stock exchanges of North America. Capitalism's
speculative party, with its galloping share prices and its celebrity millionaires, came to an
abrupt stop.

The Great Crash, it was called, and it was followed by the Great Depression.

October 24th was Black Thursday. "Speculators Shaken in Wild Day of Panic," shouted
the bold type headline on the front page of the next day's Toronto Globe.

The New York Stock Exchange, the accompanying stories reported, had experienced
massive declines in wild trading. Thousands of accounts were wiped out before leading
bankers intervened to halt the slump.

The dread extended to the Toronto markets, the Globe declared, and "rocked" share
prices there. In Montreal forced selling ran rampant, and practically every stock finished
the day down.

"The biggest crash ever recorded," lamented the famed British economist John Maynard
Keynes, whose own investments were entirely gone by the end of the year.

Tuesday, October 29, was blacker still. On Wall Street, 16,410,030 shares were sold, up
almost four million from Black Thursday's unprecedented totals. The New York Times
industrial averages plummeted, eliminating a strong year's gains, and the investment giant
Goldman, Sachs was reduced to barely fifty percent of its worth the night before.

In Toronto and Montreal, liquidation records were set. Horrified investors clogged the
financial districts, while employees in the exchanges and the brokerage houses worked
themselves to near-collapse in an attempt to corral the paperwork.

The Canadian Annual Review reckoned that "never before the 1929 crash had amounts
that ran into billions of dollars been lost on the Canadian Stock Exchanges in so brief a
period of time."

"The singular feature of the great crash of 1929," the Canadian-born economist John
Kenneth Galbraith wrote 25 years later, "was that the worst continued to worsen." The
markets jumped back to life, but briefly. The setbacks returned and they persisted.

From the peak of the bull market in 1929 to mid-1930, the fifty most active Canadian
stocks diminished on average to well under half their market value. Shareholders in
International Nickel and Imperial Oil lost more than $500 million each, those in Canadian
Pacific Railway over $60 million.
Standard Oil of New Jersey's John D. Rockefeller, the Bill Gates of his day, was caught
up in the turmoil. On November 13, 1929, another disastrous day for the markets, he put
his family's money behind a guarantee that his enterprise's shares would not fall below
50. In early 1932, the price was 20.
Appendix 7

Critical Incident: Wall Street Crash
Appendix 8

Critical Incident: Wheat Crop Crash
Appendix 9

Critical Incident: Beginning of World War II
Appendix 10

Critical Incident: Confederation of Newfoundland

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