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Extracts From The 1901 Immigration Report For Canada

from the Sessional Papers of the Government of Canada 1-2 Edward VII (25) 1902, Report of the Department of the Interior (Immigration)

...As explained on many previous occasions, the Board of Trade returns do not give any accurate idea of the emigration from the United Kingdom to Canada. All the 2nd class and steerage passengers on the various steamers are included as emigrants, whether they are going out for the first time or not, and the emigrants are classified as going to the United States or Canada according to the place at which they land. For instance, a great many emigrants go to Canada, especially eastern Canada, via the United States, but they are all regarded in the returns as emigrants to the States, while those who go to the States via a Canadian port are returned as emigrants to Canada. The disadvantage under which Canada labours in this respect has been accentuated this year, inasmuch as all the emigrants travelling by the Dominion steamers to Portland are classified as United States emigrants, while in former years when landed at Halifax and Montreal they were returned as settlers in Canada....

The British steamship companies, including all the Canadian lines, except one, owing to their agreement with the continental lines, do not take any active part in the conveyance of emigration from the continent, excepting so far as Scandinavia is concerned, and they are not as active there in the interest of Canada as we could wish.

Apart from the understanding between the steamship companies, to which I have referred, Canada labours under a great disadvantage in the fact that there is little or no direct steamship communication from the continent or from Scandinavia to the Dominion, the result being that the emigration from these countries is largely controlled by the companies whose steamers ply to New York and other American ports. As the rates from New York to the western portions of the Dominion are higher than those from Quebec, the New York lines, it is to be feared, take very little interest in Canadian immigration. This applies also to the companies whose steamers ply between the United Kingdom and American ports.

The importance to Canada of securing the co-operation of the lines running steamers to New York will be seen by an examination of the following return giving the number of passengers carried to New York during the year 1900:

Passengers.- A detailed statement is given of the number of cabin and steerage passengers landed at the port of New York during the last three years by the various steamship lines.

_____________ Cabin Steerage Total
Norddeutscher 26,577 89,143 115,720
Hamburg 23,657 72,245 95,902
White Star Line 14,948 29,370 44,318
Cunard Line 20,000 22,751 42,751
Cie. Générale Transat 8,795 30,643 39,438
Red Star Line 5,559 31,003 36,562
American Line 16,435 16,844 33,279
Holland American Line 5,590 25,940 31,530
Anchor Line 7,693 22,687 30,380
Navigazione G. Italiana 286 17,265 17,551
Fabre Line 26 15,653 15,679
Prince Line 247 13,847 14,094
Thingvalla 962 4,838 5,800
Allan State Line 2,727 1,399 4,126
Atlantic Transport 3,749 ----------- 3,749
Other lines 601 6,262 6,863
  137,852 403,491 541,343

Total for 1900, 541,343

We have had some correspondence about Italian emigration. I am glad to know that the results of your inquiries into the alleged reports of destitution and starvation showed that there was little or no foundation for the alarming reports that appeared in the Italian press. No doubt some people have gone out who do not belong to the classes that are in demand, but they now appear to have all settled down, and I trust they will turn out to be good settlers. (pages 6-7)

The accommodation provided by the Allan Line has been very satisfactory, the berths being clean, tidy, and wholesome. There being only £1 (one pound) difference in the passage money as between second and third class, 90 per cent of the number travel by the former class; the rates being £5 10s. third, or £6 10s. second, from Glasgow to Quebec, and to Winnipeg £8 and £9 respectively. Cards of introduction to the government agents in Canada have been given in the majority of cases, and as before gratefully accepted. The people feel more at ease and settled in their minds knowing that on their arrival their individual interests will be, as for as possible, cared for by an officer of the government. (page 28)

Report of D. Treau De Cúli, Agent in Belgium

Antwerp, July 2, 1901.
The High Commissioner for Canada,

My Lord,-I have the honour to present you my annual report on the work done in Belgium during the year 1900-1.

I employed this year the same methods to place before the public the advantages offered by Canada as in the two previous years, namely: Free distribution of literature, lectures on Canada in the winter season, that is from October 1 to May 1, and visits to fairs and shows during the summer months. At these fairs and shows I cause a large number of leaflets on Canada to be distributed, and I keep myself at the disposal of any farmer wishing for information.

The last three months of 1900 were passed mostly in the Flanders giving lectures in every locality from where parties had already left or intended to leave for Canada.

The first three months of 1901 I lectured mostly in the province of Luxembourg, when MM. Ed. Colleaux and Sebastien Deleau, from Deleau, Manitoba, and Mr. Jules Maron, from Morinville, Alberta, assisted me greatly in bringing to my notice the localities where they had friends. These gentlemen accompanied me generally to the place of lecture and were irrefutable proof of what a farmer might expect in Canada, as tow of them, Mr. M.E. Colleaux and Jules Maron went there penniless and are now well-to-do farmers.

The success of my work was felt early in the spring, as in the month of March last 40 Flemish and 20 French Belgians registered in Winnipeg, according to the report of the immigration office there, while a certain number stayed in the province of Quebec, where they secured work with the Belgo-Canadian Pulp Co.

I would like to give a correct return of Belgians leaving for Canada, but it is quite impossible, as many who intend to leave at once have to wait for one reason or another for weeks and sometimes months, and as soon as they think they have all necessary information, they do not, as a rule, communicate any longer with the office, but are looked after by the shipping agents. I beg leave to remark that as far as our Belgian emigrants are concerned an erroneous classification is often made; those who speak nothing but French are generally returned as French, while others speaking only German are invariably classed as Germans. Notwithstanding this I am confident 1901 will prove a very good year for the Belgian emigration.

I am happy to state that in the beginning of this month four or five families will leave for Manitoba to join their friends who left here on March 16 last, and who are so well pleased with the country that they settled at once.

I am also pleased to inform your lordship that besides the 38 lectures given in the country places, I accepted invitations to lecture on Canada, from "La Société Générale d'Agriculture de Belgique" at Brussels, Les Anciens Elèves de l'Institut agricole de l'Etat à Gembloux and l'Institut à Mons. These three lectures were well attended and the keenest interest was shown in the advantages offered by Canada, and although the audience at these lectures was not composed of persons who would likely emigrate themselves, I have positive proof that they caused others to choose Canada as their future home, and that the knowledge of our country amongst the people.

By the retirement of Mr. A. Bodard, as agent for France, I have received many inquiries from that country, and in every case have supplied the writer with the French literature at my disposal, and have given the necessary information as I did for Belgium.

Your obedient servant,
D. Treau De Cúli. (page 40-41)

Report of Halifax Agent. P 51

...During this past season both the Allan and Dominion Lines of steamers withdrew their usual winter services from this port and landed all their passengers at Portland instead.

There has also been a falling off in the arrivals of Galicians. Neither have there passed through this agency any of the usual parties of children during the past season, excepting Mr. Middlemore's party for the maritime provinces, and a party of 17 in charge of Miss Foster landed at Sydney, ex the wrecked ss. Lusitania, and booked for St. John....

Allan Line 873 349 162 129 1,513
Dominion Line 19 13 4 4 40
Elder Dempster Line 3,744 653 353 258 5,008
Furness Line 84 29 18 18 149
Hamburg American Line 1,288 907 789 756 3,740
Other Lines 444 355 36 53 888
6,452 2,306 1,362 1,218 11,338

Nationalities arriving, by shipping line in 1901 (wide file)

Lower Prov. Quebec Ont Man North-west
(SK and AB)
BC Yukon Returning
Tourists US Total
Allan 467 55 168 218 85 69 --- 52 8 391 1,513
Dominion 6 13 14 4 --- 2 --- 1 --- --- 40
Elder Dempster 539 1,577 314 361 66 29 2 80 24 2,016 5,008
Furness 138 1 --- --- 1 --- --- 4 3 2 149
Hamburg Am. 1 24 19 2,184 1,499 3 --- 3 --- 7 3,740
Other 480 5 --- --- --- --- --- 49 29 325 888
1,6131 1,675 515 2,767 1,651 103 2 189 64 2,741 11,338

Report of the Quebec Agent p 64-65

The average passage of the Allan Line was: weekly steamers from Liverpool, 9Ĺ days; Londonderry, 8 days. Glasgow steamers from Glasgow, 12 days. Beaver Line weekly steamers from Liverpool, 11 days; Londonderry, 9Ĺ days; Queenstown, 11 days. Dominion Line weekly steamers from Liverpool, 9Ĺ days. Franco-Canadienne Line from Bordeaux, 16 days.

The number of Cabin and Steerage by each line was a follows:--

--------- Cabin Steerage Total
Allan Line
Weekly steamers from Liverpool 2,405 11,562 13,967
Weekly steamers from Londonderry 24 375 399
Weekly steamers from Glasgow 47 1,047 1,094
  2,476 12,984 15,460
Dominion Line
Weekly steamers from Liverpool 1,164 3,083 4,247
Beaver Line
Weekly steamers from Liverpool 1,049 16,707 17,756
Weekly steamers from Londonderry 4 7 11
Weekly steamers from Queenstown 3 42 45
  1,056 16,756 17,812
Steamers from Bordeaux ----- 313 313
Grand Total
4,696 33,136 37,832

Report of the Montreal Immigration Agent p 78

...Those steerage passengers who arrive from Europe by the various steamships at the ports of Quebec, Halifax, N.S., and St. John, N.B., and who are compelled to disembark there are accounted for at these ports, being transferred to the different railways there.

The first and second-class passengers, who arrive from Europe, as a general rule during the season of the St. Lawrence river navigation, remain on board until the steamships reach Montreal and disembark here.

This agency has followed the system of checking immigrant arrivals and departures as usual. It is applied only to those immigrants that come from Europe via ports in the United States and bound for Canadian western points. Our officers go through the trains and take down name, sex, age, occupation, nationality, name of steamer travelled on, and destination of the newly arrived immigrant. A monthly list of the names and other particulars thus obtained is prepared, and in due course forwarded to the department at Ottawa.

The total number of immigrant arrivals at Montreal, per ocean travel, via ports of New York, Boston and Portland, as per Statement A, during the financial year ending June 30, 1901, was 5,768
The total number of immigrant arrivals at Montreal from the United States, as per Statement B, during the financial year ending June 30, 1901, was 2,364
Grand total
The total number of immigrant arrivals at Montreal from United States, and per ocean travel via ports in United States, during the corresponding twelve months of the years 1899 and 1900, was 4,162
An increase of

During the twelve months referred to, I have issued to immigrants going to Manitoba, the North-west Territories and British Columbia, ninety-six certificates.

The plan of changing these certificates for immigrant tickets, as issued by the Canadian Pacific Railway officials, works more satisfactorily every year. The certificates enable intending settlers to convey their families to their final destination at a greatly reduced cost.

...Mr. George Hassan, who has a Syrian borading house at No. 1441 Notre Dame street, Montreal, "Restaurant of Beyrout,' said: That the majority of the twenty-one Syrian immigrants, who arrived here last summer per the steamship Louisiana, went to his house, the rest to the homes of their fellow-countrymen in this city. They were a suitable class for this country, being young, strong and healthy,. The men secured employment in Montreal as traders and labourers, and the women as domestic servants.....

There was not a solitary case of contagious disease among the new arrivals. The medical staff at the Grosse Isle station are to be congratulated upon the strict supervision of the immigrants, which led to such satisfactory results.


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