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areas, of which the Department of Agriculture 500,000,000 acres of arable land exclusive of in the Report for 1884, page 468, says: the mountain section not now utilized;
That at the close of the present century this A large part of the elevated western area is assumed to be unfit for general agriculture, though area will be in the hands of private owners; special culture, carefully adapted to situation and That a large portion of it is below the line humidity, with amelioration of irrigation and cul- of profitable wheat culture, and is not adapted tivation and judicious selection of plants in crop to successful stock raising. distribution, will produce results in agriculture
Therefore, if Canada contains any great exwhich will surprise the farmers of to-day who live tent of fertile virgin soil, capable of profitato witness the development of the next twenty bly producing breadstuffs, beef
, mutton, and years.
other commodities of this class, the United In the four years 1871–74 the yield of corn States will probably become a very extensive over the United States averaged 2572 bushels purchaser of them, if the tariff is not absolutely to the acre. In the next four years it was 27.2 restrictive; and in proportion as the commerbushels; in the next four, 25 bushels; in 1883, cial relations between the two countries are 23.7 bushels; in 1884, 26 bushels. In 1886 it broadened and the interchange of commodiwas 22 bushels; in 1887, 20 bushels; and the ties is facilitated, the demand for the products preliminary reports for 1888 put the probable of Canada will be augmented. yield below that of 1887. I have not the returns Has Canada such a territory? for 1885 by me. The annual average yield of In considering this phase of the subject it wheat per acre in the ten years ending 1879 is necessary to be on guard against“ glittering was 12.4 bushels per acre, while for the sub- generalities,” to take no account of the fancisequent nine years it was 11.8 bushels. The ful figures and hasty conclusions in which average yield of oats for the ten years ending political orators and even parliamentary com1879 was 28.4 bushels per acre; in the eight mittees sometimes indulge. Fifteen years ago years 1880–87 it was 26.5 bushels. Let it be the people of the Dominion had little idea of remembered that during all this time a vast the resources of their country. Since then a and constantly increasing area of virgin soil vast mass of facts has been collected. Areas has been added yearly to the tilled land, the which less than a score of years ago were tendency of which is to keep up the average supposed to be a trackless waste of snow for product per acre, and it will be conceded to the greater part of the year and a barren inbe at least arguable that when the whole of the hospitable wilderness for the remainder have arable public domain has been divided up been found to possess a summer climate of a into farms, as will be the case within a little highly favorable character. It has been shown more than a decade, a permanent reduction that summer isotherms are independent of in the yield per acre may be looked for, un- latitude; that the slight elevation of the Canaless an improvement takes place in methods dian North-west above the sea, the Chinook of cultivation and more attention is paid than winds from the Pacific, and the alternate is now given to keeping up the fertility of the southerly winds, heated on the plains of the soil.
United States, cause a balmy temperature to From a paper published in the “ North- extend during five months of the year to within western Miller” I gather that in the five years twenty-five degrees of the Pole; so that wheat is ending 1878 the export of wheat was, in round a reasonably safe crop in the great Mackenzie numbers, 300,000,000 bushels, that of Indian Basin within a comparatively short distance com 266,000,000 bushels; in the five years of the Arctic Circle. The Canadian Senate ending 1883 the respective amounts were, of committee in 1888, after examining over a wheat 626,000,000 bushels, of Indian corn hundred witnesses, either orally or by corre358,000,000 bushels; and in the five years spondence, felt warranted in reporting that ending 1888, of wheat 374,000,000 bushels, of there was in the great Mackenzie River Basin Indian corn 222,000,000 bushels.
and north of the fifty-fourth parallel of latitude From the facts above presented, the follow- an area of 800,000 square miles suitable for ing conclusions seem warranted:
grazing, of which 316,000 square miles were That the population of the United States adapted to the cultivation of wheat.1 will be 120,000,000 by the year 1920;
This conclusion is so startling, so out of That, to provide food for this number of keeping with the preconceived ideas of almost people, to keep farm stock proportionate in everybody, that it will be received with hesinumber to what is now kept, and to maintain tation; yet it seems fully borne out by the a relative position in the matter of exports of testimony given before the committee. The farm produce, 980,000,000 acres will be re- Canadian North-west is full of surprises, prequired for tillage land and pasture.
1 Appendix to the Journal of the Senate of Canada, That there are in round numbers about Vol. XXII., p. 10.
In the Maritime Provinces.
senting a most inviting field for exploration; The principal export of agricultural produce but the region spoken of above, that is, the from Quebec to the United States consists of country north of the fifty-fourth parallel of lat- hay and potatoes, the aggregate value of the itude - may be disregarded for the purposes of two items being about $1,000,000 annually. the present article, as, in view of the large un- This will probably increase from year to year occupied area south of that parallel, it is doubt- gradually, but no very great stress ought to ful if the more northerly area will play any be laid upon the part which this province will considerable part in international commerce play in supplying the market of the Repubduring the next thirty years. As showing the lic. French-Canadians, at least the agricultural probable ultimate development of Canadian part of the population, are not aggressive in a agriculture, the following estimate may be business sense, and not likely to be formidable given of what is officially claimed to be either competitors in any foreign market. What the arable or grazing land:
habitants would do if spurred up by an active
demand for the products of their farms re
18,000,000 mains to be seen. The province is adapted to In Ontario and Quebec. In Manitoba, Saskatchewan, Assiniboia, and Alberta 200,000,000 much the same class of farming as the MariIn British Columbia (exclusive of Peace River) 50,000,000 time Provinces. In the Peace River and Mackenzie valleys..
Ontario is a great agricultural province. Total
Its wheat crop in 1881, 20,406,091 bushels, For the reason given above, the last item will had in 1884 risen to over 31,000,000 bushels.2 be eliminated from the present calculation, leav- This last amount was exceeded in 1887 by ing 398,000,000 acres of tillable or pasture land only four of the United States (Ohio, Indiin Canada south of the fifty-fourth parallel. Of ana, Illinois, and Minnesota) and one Territhis not more than 60,000,000 acres are now tory (Dakota). The average yield per acre embraced in farms, so that 338,000,000 acres of wheat in Ontario, as taken from returns are yet to be occupied. One hundred million to the Provincial Bureau of Agriculture, exacres, principally in the North-west Territories, tending over a period of six years, is 1842 may be regarded as more especially adapted to bushels. This is exceeded only by the yield grazing than to cultivation; so that we arrive at of California and Colorado. After supplying the conclusion that there is in Canada, south of the demand from the eastern part of the Dothe fifty-fourth parallel, 238,000,000 acres of minion, Ontario has annually a large survacant tillage land. Or, to state the case in gen- plus of wheat; and as only about 1,700,000 eral terms, the area of arable land in Canada acres of its available area have been sown to within the well-ascertained limits of profitable this grain, it is evident that the wheat-producwheat culture is about equal to the arable pub- ing capacity of the province has not nearly lic domain in the United States. I am satisfied been reached. Ontario also produces a surthat this is a moderate estimate. Canadians plus of barley, of which 9,365,724 bushels generally will be inclined to think it far below were sold to the United States in 1887. Its the mark. Adding to the Canadian area the va- yield of this grain can be enormously augcant arable land in the United States, we get mented. The province also exports largely a total of over 500,000,000 acres, or sufficient of horses, cattle, and sheep, the first and last to provide for the wants of the people of this to the United States principally, by far the continent, at the present rate of increase and greater number of the horned stock finding a under present methods of cultivation, for the sale in Great Britain. The total area of Onnext quarter of a century, without calling for tario is 128,000,000 acres, of which, up to any large increase in the product of existing 1885, 22,000,000 acres had been granted to farms.
private owners. Of the remainder 12,000,000 Taking up the several parts of the Domin- must be deducted for water surface, leaving ion in detail, the Maritime Provinces may be 94,000,000 acres to be drawn upon for new first considered. These are Nova Scotia, New farms. With a liberal allowance for non-araBrunswick, and Prince Edward Island. The ble land, it is evident that Ontario agriculture whole area set down to their credit in the fore- and stock-raising are capable of great expangoing statement may be treated as fit for agri- sion; and as the people of the province are culture. Only about one-tenth of it, or 1,800,000 energetic and enterprising, they will be sharp acres, is under cultivation; so that, making a competitors in any market open to them. reasonable allowance for pasturage, their yield I have estimated the arable and pasture of farm produce may be increased fivefold land of British Columbia at 50,000,000 acres, without any improvement upon existing meth- exclusive of the Peace River region. The ods of farming. They furnish the New Eng- climate of this province and its luxuriant and land States with horses, sheep, potatoes, eggs, 1 Census of 1881. hay, and some other articles.
2 Report of Bureau of Agriculture, 1885.
nutritious grasses adapt it especially to stock- mediately available for the production of breadraising.
stuffs for the markets of the world. There remain to be considered Manitoba What may be regarded as the probable and the North-west Territories, south of the wheat-producing capability of this district ? fifty-fourth parallel, embracing within the limit The area in farms in Ohio, Illinois, Indiana, of wheat cultivation 276,000,000 acres. Of this Minnesota, and Iowa was in round numbers area the late Hon. Horatio Seymour of New 100,000,000 acres in 1880, or about equal to York is quoted by the Canadian Department the acreage of arable land in Manitoba and of Agriculture as saying: “There is a coun- the Canadian North-west, south of latitude 540 try owned by England with greater grain and Of the area of the States named sufficient was stock-raising capacity than all the lands on sown to wheat and corn in that year to have the Baltic, the Black Sea, and the Mediterra- produced if sown to wheat alone 320,000,000 nean combined." United States Vice-Consul bushels. Indian corn will not assume especial Taylor, in a letter to be found at length in the importance as a field crop in the Canadian Appendix to the Journal of the Canadian Sen- North-west for some time, if ever ; certainly ate for 1888, Vol. XXII., says :
not until years of acclimatization have proI can add nothing to the demonstration, by in- duced a variety which will come to perfection numerable explorations and reports, that the navi- with great rapidity. It is otherwise with wheat, gable channels of the Mackenzie and Mississippi are which is essentially a northern grain, growing connected by a territory of 1500 miles in extent in its greatest perfection during the long days north-west of St. Paul, Minnesota, having an average of the high latitudes. Therefore it is reasonwidth of 800 miles (1,200,000 square miles), which able to presume that the Canadian farmer will is substantially identical in climate and natural re
sow in wheat alone an area corresponding to sources. There is a great variety of illustrations, but that which his neighbor in Iowa and the other I shall confine myself to one —a flower. The prai- States named sows in corn and wheat. But the rie's firstling of spring has the popular designation of “crocus,” but it is an anemone. . . It is often average yield of wheat per acre in the virgin gathered on the Mississippi bluffs near the Falls of soil of Manitoba and the Canadian North-west St. Anthony on the 15th of April. It appears simul- is one-third greater than in the old-settled States taneously on the dry elevation near Winnipeg. It to the south; hence the probable wheat prowas observed even earlier, on the 13th of April, dur- duction of this part of Canada, which may be ing the Saskatchewan campaign of 1885, and is re- described as lying west of Lake Superior, east ported by Major Butler as in profusion on Peace of the Rocky Mountains, north of the United River, 1500 miles from St. Paul, on the 26th of April
. Even 1000 miles beyond, on the Yukon, States boundary, and south of the fifty-fourth within the Arctic Circle, Archdeacon Macdonald, á parallel of latitude, is 426,000,000 bushels. missionary of the Church of England, has gathered This, however, will only be possible when the flower on the 14th of May. Equally significant the population of the country has reached as this delicate herald of spring are the records of 8,000,000, the population of the States named ice obstruction in rivers — their emancipation being in 1880 necessitating a home consumption of simultaneous from Fort Snelling, Minnesota, to Fort 60,000,000 bushels, which leaves the probVermilion, Athabasca.
able surplus wheat production of the district A fair estimate would perhaps take from the 366,000,000 bushels annually, an amount equal area of the district now under consideration, to the total probable increase in the annual which does not include the whole country re- consumption of wheat in the United States at ferred to by Mr. Taylor, 76,000,000 acres as the expiration of thirty years from the present adapted to neither agriculture nor grazing, and date. divide the remainder equally between those So much for the trade in one direction. two industries. In other words, there is in the What of that in the other direction ? Will Canadian North-west, south of the fifty-fourth Canada continue to increase her purchases of parallel, 100,000,000 acres of land admirably the products of United States farms ? No adapted to wheat culture. The average yield reason can be assigned why she should not. per acre over the whole district, as given by the No important item of her agricultural imports census of 1886 (a local census), was, of wheat, from her southern neighbor can be replaced 18.4 bushels; of barley, 22.5 bushels; and of by home-raised articles. The trade between oats, 32.4 bushels. By far the greater part of the two countries rests upon the natural and this region is unoccupied; indeed, immigration legitimate foundation of an interchange of has only of recent years begun to find its way products between a southern and a northern into it. It lies adjacent to existing and pro- region. jected railways, and may be regarded as im- Canada purchases $13,000,000 worth of the
1 The area of arable land in this part of the North- products of her neighbor's farms every year, west is equally put at 140,000,000 acres, but this seems including both animal and vegetable products, excessive
but exclusive of articles manufactured from VOL. XXXVIII.- 32.
material raised on the farms; that is, about established, the larger part of the Canadian
will be the forests of Canada. No approximaCertain lines of Canadian imports from the tion can be given of the resources of the DoUnited States may be considered as necessaries; minion in this particular. Practically every acre such, for example, as Indian corn and meal, and of unimproved land in the five eastern provcotton, raw and manufactured. Portions of inces, or, in round numbers, 300,000,000 acres, the Dominion are adapted to the successful is covered with a forest growth of some commergrowth of Indian corn, but there is no prob- cial value. The North-west Territories contain ability of its being cultivated in those localities an immense area covered with forest. Captain in sufficient quantity to affect appreciably the Craig, in his evidence before the Senate comforeign supply. Hence also pork, which can mittee, said the forest extended from the head of be grown cheaper in a corn-producing country Lake Manitoba to the Rocky Mountains, a disthan elsewhere, will always be imported largely tance of a thousand miles. How wide the timber into Canada.
belt is, it is impossible to say with accuracy; Raw and manufactured cotton may both but the committee felt justified in reporting be classed among the products of the farms that the growth was “far in excess of the needs of the United States in this connection. The of the district, and of great prospective value Canadian import of these articles from the to the treeless regions of Canada and the States in 1887 was valued at $8,404,430. The United States.” The principal woods in this first point to be noted is that of the $2,933,078 region are spruce and poplar, which grow as worth of raw cotton imported by Canada in large as two feet in diameter; not large cer1887, all but $799 worth came from her south- tainly when compared with the trees of British ern neighbor. The second is that of the Columbia or of the great pine regions of the $5,471,352 worth of manufactured cottons im- Northern States, yet of sufficient size to make ported by Canada in the same year, the United valuable timber. The forests of British CoStates furnished goods to the value of $915,126 lumbia are very extensive and the growth is only, the bulk of the remainder coming from of the highest quality. Speaking in general Great Britain. There is no reason to antici- terms, the forests of Canada can probably meet pate that Canada will buy her raw cotton any demand likely to be made upon
them for outside of the continent. It is now admitted many years to come. The Canadian export into Canada duty free; the import is steadily of forest products averages from $20,000,000 increasing, and as large amounts of capital to $25,000,000 in value annually, of which have been invested in mills and the cost of considerably less than a half finds its way to manufacturing is not greater than in the United the United States market, the greater part States, it is probable that, no matter how inti- of the remainder being sold in Great Britain, mate the trade relations of the two nations in competition with stock brought from Scanbecome, the amount of raw cotton needed in dinavia and the Baltic. It is conceded by the the Dominion will grow larger from year to best authorities in the trade that a very slight year. There can also be no doubt that if the change in existing conditions would divert Canadian duty were removed from manufac- Canadian lumber largely from European chantured cottons coming from the United States, nels, and hence the means are at hand to more that country would furnish more than one-sixth than double the lumber trade between the of the Dominion's purchases in foreign markets. Dominion and the Republic the moment the It would seem indeed not unreasonable to pressure of circumstances renders it necessary anticipate that if continental free trade became that the foreign wood supply of the latter
country should be increased by removing the with the supply. In like manner, as populaduty from the imported article.
tion increases in the central plain of the conSome anthracite coal is found in Canada, tinent, the great northern rivers and lakes of but there are no reliable data as to the extent Canada will be drawn upon as a source of of the known deposits ; nothing indicates a food supply. It may not be within a quarter probability of their being sufficient to lessen of a century, but the time cannot be far distant the importation of this mineral from the United when the enterprise of Canadians will provide States, which in 1887 was of the value of nearly railway communication as far north as the $4,500,000. This line of trade will increase Great Slave Lake, an immense body of water, steadily, especially as the cities and towns in little, if any, smaller than Lake Superior, and Canada grow larger. Of bituminous coal with the Mackenzie River, which during five both countries have a supply essentially in- months of the year affords a navigable chanexhaustible, the development of the interna- nel on which for over a thousand miles large tional trade in it depending altogether upon steamers can safely float to the Polar Ocean.1 the cheapness at which it can be delivered Considerable progress has already been made at the place of consumption. Ontario buys in this direction. A railway from Winnipeg to nearly $4,000,000 worth of bituminous coal Hudson's Bay is also projected, and its early annually in the United States and pays the duty construction appears probable. upon it, presumably for the reason that it comes The masterly way in which Canada has set as cheaply this way as the Nova Scotia article, about the herculean task of utilizing her vast which is, of course, free of duty. In like manner domain will, when it is better understood, chalCalifornia imports largely of British Columbia lenge the admiration of the world. It is imcoal. If the duty were removed, the New Eng- possible to read the long reports of explorers land States would undoubtedly become large and the voluminous testimony of residents, or purchasers of Nova Scotia coal, as it could be to reflect upon the magnitude of the great enbrought from the mines by water. Immense terprises completed, undertaken, or contemcoal-fields are found in nearly every part of the plated, without feeling that the men who have Canadian North-west, from the shores of the gone into the Canadian North-west are worthy Arctic Ocean to the international boundary. to be the founders of a nation. To hear of Their existence, while having an important railways projected into a region which, only bearing upon the settlement of the country, and twenty-five years ago, we were told in school indirectly upon the timber supply of the future, was given up to the dominion of the Polar bear is not material at present in connection with and the reindeer; to read of successful farminternational commerce.
ing in a latitude so northerly that during the The effect which continental free trade summer months there is scarcely any night at would have upon the trade in metallic ores be- all; to be told that the navigation of Hudson's tween the United States and Canada must be a Bay and even of the Arctic Ocean, by way of matter of mere conjecture, and the same may Behring Strait to the mouth of the Mackenzie be said of the probable trade in the crude and thence up that stream, two thousand miles metals themselves. It is interesting to note the into the heart of the continent, to a land capapresence of excellent iron ore in Nova Scotia in ble of producing millions upon millions of bushclose proximity to large coal deposits; of great els of wheat, of pasturing almost countless herds beds of Bessemer iron ore in Ontario, in the of cattle, of supplying the petroleum market of immediate vicinity of a part of country which the world and abounding with gold and other is an extensive consumer of Pennsylvania coal; valuable mines — to realize that this not only of manganese, antimony, building stone, and is feasible, but likely soon to become a realother minerals of value; but these have more ity, is to get a new insight into the probable bearing upon the internal development of Can- future of the continent and of the race which ada than upon the interchange of natural prod- is taking possession of the northerly but by no ucts between the two countries.
means less valuable half of it. The purview of In her extensive and productive fisheries this paper does not embrace the discussion of Canada possesses what must be of inestimable the future of Canada ; but it may be asked advantage to her in the future. There is no whether, in view of the great natural advanmeasure of her wealth in this particular; for tages hereinbefore referred to, the Dominion in addition to her seaboard fishing-grounds, cannot claim to possess the elements necessary there are thousands of miles of river and lakes to the establishment of an independent nationteeming with food fishes. In recent years a ality ; by which I mean, not politically indelarge trade in fresh frozen fish has been done be- pendent, but commercially. I wish to avoid the tween the gulf shore of New Brunswick and the political side of the question at present. The cities of New England, the fish being shipped
1 Report of Canadian Senate Committee, 1888, in refrigerator cars, the demand keeping pace pp. 56–60.