An Outline Of Canada During The Great Depression, And How It Was One Of Canada's Most Devastating Periods Of History.

2794 words - 11 pages

Following the roaring 1920's, the 1930's plagued Canada with some of the most devastating hardships that Canada has ever experienced. The Roaring Twenties had come to a complete and abrupt halt when the stock market crashed on October 24,1929 in New York, Toronto and Montreal. The market crashed because the stocks in the New York exchange were over valued. Previous signs of a recession had been ignored therefore thousands of business' had gone bankrupt literally over night, due to the depreciation in material value. Gold Exchange that was adopted in the mid thirties was sometimes criticized as one of the factors that contributed to the length and severity of Canada's Great Depression. The depression had occurred at the worst time possible. During the 1930's Canada was plagued with a nation wide drought. The prairies were especially susceptible to the drought. To add to the problems a misguided government was in control. Business and industry saw the worst of the economic depression. Many business' and industry ceased to exist following the depression. The entire nation felt these affects, although the provinces experienced them in different ways. The Great Depression was not only detrimental to the business and industry, it affected the society deeply in their own homes. Canada's Great Depression of the 1930's was one of the largest disappointments in Canadian history.The 1930's in Canada experienced torturing weather. This time was also known as the "Dirty Thirties". Throughout this time Canada experienced extremely dry weather, this plague however affected the prairie provinces more severely than any other area of Canada. There was a 5-7 year period in the prairies where the prairie provinces received next to no precipitation (Desmond, 1996). Hot winds dried up everything, and began blowing away crop soil. One man who lived during this time described the weather as "The Prairies were like a great rich land without rain. The heat everyday was too hot to adjust to during the day and too hot to sleep at night. It was like living a dry sauna. The wind was so hot and dry that it sucked up all the moisture." (Desmond, 1996). Dust storms were extremely devastating to farmers crops. Impact of the dust storms reduced visibility to a few feet, lakes went dry and farmers had to cut Russian Thistle to feed the starving cattle since there were no crops (Desmond, 1996). Because of this ranchers and farmers would often find their cattle and other livestock dead from unbearable pain and anguish of the thistle have torn through there intestines. Summer temperatures would exceed one hundred degrees Fahrenheit on a regular basis. Extreme summer temperatures also caused several deaths. The southern Canadian prairies showed distinct desert characteristics. Not only did the prairies experience devastating summers, the chilling winters were equally destructive. Chilling record colds swept about the prairie plains, even causing several people to freeze to death. The...

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