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Grade 10 Canadian History: Since World War One
Learning Goals You will be able to describe some significant interactions between different communities in Canada, and between Canada and the international community, from 1929 to 1945, and explain what changes, if any, resulted from them
Success Criteria You will identify some significant ways in which Canadians cooperated and/or came into conflict with each other during this period. You will explain their impact on different people in Canada.
Big Question What was the On to Ottawa Trek? Who was involved?
On to Ottawa Trek During the depression, many Canadians had endured enough. They marched to Ottawa. to Ottawa.
On to Ottawa Trek During the depths of the depression patience with the government was grew thin. Work was hard to find. Many Canadians worked in federal relief camps. They lived in dismal conditions and were only paid twenty cents per day. Thousands of men who were upset with the conditions, low pay and the daily grind of living in the relief camps, went on strike in April, 1935.
On to Ottawa Trek After two months of striking with no results, they decided to take their case to the federal government. A few thousand angry Canadian men decided to travel by train from Vancouver, British Columbia to Ottawa. They protested on the steps of parliament. They hoped to get the Prime Minister's attention. They dubbed this journey the On to Ottawa Trek.
On to Ottawa Trek The protesters reached Regina, Saskatchewan on June 14th. They met two federal cabinet ministers there, who invited eight leaders of the protest movement to Ottawa. They would meet PM Bennett on the condition that the rest of the protesters stay in Regina, where a large RCMP contingent was located. These terms were agreed to by the protesters. This meeting with Bennett turned into a yelling match.
On to Ottawa Trek Bennett accused the protesters of being radicals and extortionists. Trek leader Arthur "Slim" Evans shouted that the PM was a liar. He was promptly escorted from the building. On July 1st 1935, the simmering tensions of the Great Depression boiled over, as police and jobless protesters clashed in the streets of Regina. This was called the Regina Riot
On to Ottawa Trek When the riot was over, one policeman lay dead, and 40 protesters and five civilians were wounded. As the city lay in ruins, with sidewalks covered in broken glass, 130 protesters ended up in jail. The movement fell apart after the Regina Riot, and it never continued past Regina. Although Bennett stopped the On to Ottawa Trek, his party was voted out of office a few months later in the 1935 federal election. His reputation was so badly hurt, his party went from holding 134 seats to just 69.