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SOCIAL, CONDITIONS, 1791-1841.   239

many crops had been raised in the same fields, and so little had been done to improve the soil that it was almost exhausted. In Lower Canada, New Brunswick, and Nova Scotia much ship-building was carried on. In 1841 sixty-four sea-going vessels were built at Quebec alone. There were hardly any other important manufactures, though the woollen manufacture had been begun both in Upper and Lower Canada.

The fur trade, though no longer the chief source of wealth in the older colonies, still held its own in the

(From photo by Mathers, Edmonton.)

northern and western wilds, and the traders were the unwilling means of opening new regions to settlers.

One of the chief exports of Upper Canada was potash. It was obtained from the ashes of trees burnt to clear the land, and was almost the only article which could be sold for cash in the new settlements.

New   In the older towns and villages many of

Settles. the people lived in great comfort. But the newcomers, pushing on into the uncleared forests, had to depend nearly as much on making what they needed


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