Previous The History of the Dominion of Canada (1897) Next



decision of the Privy Council. The power of provincial assemblies to regulate their own procedure, and to enlarge or limit the privileges of members, has been established by a still more recent decision of the same tribunal (1896).

Manitoba. — Since Confederation Manitoba has rapidly advanced. Municipal and educational systems have been adopted, founded largely upon those of Ontario. Out of the clause in the Manitoba Act, which secured to the religious minority there their rights in respect to denominational schools, has arisen the celebrated " Manitoba school question," which it would be out of place to discuss here. A settlement has recently (1896) been arrived at, by which the Manitoba government, while adhering to the principle of a national school system under provincial control, has agreed to make provision for religious teaching during certain school hours. The question as to the boundary line between Ontario and Manitoba gave rise for a time to a little friction between the two provinces. Its settlement involved much historical research, as the northern limit of the old province of Canada had never been very accurately defined. Another matter in which Manitoba was much interested was the question of the railway monopoly possessed by the Canadian Pacific Railway Company under their charter. After a warm agitation of the question, the monopoly clause was revoked and Manitoba's railway development has, of late years, been marked. She is at present pre-eminently an agricultural province, and her wheat has a world-wide reputation. The opening up of the vast wheat areas of Manitoba and the North-West Territories has caused in the older provinces an increased attention to stock-raising and the cultivation of dairy products. Our butter and cheese industries are making rapid strides.

The C. P. R.—North-West expansion has, of course, been largely the result of the construction of our great transcontinental line, the Canadian Pacific Railway. The work of surveying the line to be followed through the passes of the Rocky Mountains proved one of extreme difficulty. The work of actual construction was in consequence delayed until 1876, and British Columbia, as already mentioned, became much incensed. In 1880 the contract for the construction of the line (then partly under way) was let to the present company, who took up the work with such

-` ` 23

Previous The History of the Dominion of Canada (1897) Next