The Roaring 20’s
The Famous Five
Clara Bow Brewster 1921
Canada After the War
• War propelled Canada into independence.
• The war had changed the perception of war for so
• Canada lost 46,000 dead and wounded from the war.
This led to the emergence of a lost generation
• A Generation Lost
• The Lost Generation and the arts
The League of Nations
• Canada was a founding member of the newly
created League of Nations
• Americans objected to the formation of the League
but once again they conceded. American Senate
rejected the states from becoming members of the
• The League pledged every member to defend the
boundaries established at Versailles
• World wide influenza pandemic broke out in 1918
originating (they suspect in an American Army base)
• Response from Ottawa and provinces was slow
(being occupied with the war)
• Claimed 30,000 to 50,000 lives in Canada and around
50 million worldwide!
• Rumor of peace helped to calm people down
Flu victims being buried. North River,
Trouble for Canada
• At the end of the war Munitions factories
were shut down
• Over a quarter million workers were suddenly
out of jobs
• Canadian government had to pay 250 million
in back pay to soldiers returning from front
Trouble for Canada continued
• Membership in unions increased during the
war from 143,000 in 1915 to 378,000 by 1919.
• Many workers talked of a revolution like the
one in Russia
• The government became scared of threat of
Communism (Red Scare)
Winnipeg General Strike
• A general strike began in Winnipeg on May 15, 1919.
• 30,000 metal and building workers walked off the job
• The general strike spread across Canada
• Most employees wanted to bargain with employer
not a revolution
Winnipeg General Strike
• The strikers had stiff demands.
• Strikers wanted higher wages and a shorter
• They also wanted Collective Bargaining, which
meant the companies had to negotiate with
the workers as a whole.
Crowd gathered outside old City Hall
during the Winnipeg General Strike, June
• Business leaders, politicians and industrialists
wanted to protect their own interests.
• They formed the Citizen’s Committee of One
Thousand to attack the strike in the press.
• The committee had the support of the
Winnipeg Strike Continued
• Parliament made it illegal to even talk about a
• Government ordered the leaders of the strike
arrested June 17th.
• Protestors organized a mass rally.
• On June 21, 1919, mounted police charged the
crowds on Main Street Winnipeg, in a Confrontation
that became known as Bloody Saturday.
Think/ Pair/ Share
1.What is collective bargaining? What do you think
are some of the advantages and disadvantages of
2.Should the government have been allowed to use
force to stop the Winnipeg General Strike?
Disgruntled Canadian Farmers
• Farmers were very unhappy
• The price of wheat was determined by government
• In 1919 the board set the price at $2.15 per bushel just
when world price rose to $3.15 per bushel
• The next year the government dissolved the board just as
a bumper crop in Europe dropped the prices to $1.11 per
bushel, forcing many farmers who had borrowed money
on the original price into bankruptcy
The Election of 1921
• Borden didn’t run in the election.
• The leader of the Liberal party was William Lyon
• The election brought the emergence of a new
party representing the needs of farmers known as
• Arthur Meighen was the Conservative leader
The Election 1921 Continued
• For the first time, Canadians had three choices.
• The election brought in the creation of Regionalism as a
result of different parts of the country having such
• King won with a minority government and led Canada into
a time of economic boom.
• The election of 1921 and the emergence of the third party
Government and Crisis
• The progressives did not last long but they were
influential in creating pensions.
• In 1922 when Britain announced its planned
invasion of Turkey, PM Mackenzie King said
Canada would not support Britain.
• This is known as the Chanak crisis
• We had officially challenged Britain’s stranglehold
on Canadian international affairs.
• PM King’s minority government needed the support of
the Progressives to hold power. When they lost it he
rushed to the Governor General for an election but was
• Under pressure Byng finally called the election. The
appointed governor general, however, had gone
against the elected leader of the country.
Burning Questions! Think/
1. Under what circumstances, if any, do you think
the Governor General should be allowed to step
in and interfere with the policies of the Prime
2. What do you think are some of the problems
with minority governments? What are some of
the advantages? What do we have now? Explain
which is the superior form of government in
The Improving Economy
• The 1920’s started in depression.
• Then the US started investing in Canada and our
• US Companies set up ‘Branch Plants’ which operated
here but for American business men.
• With the increase in employment and economic
prosperity few Canadians questioned the long term
effects of American involvement.
Bootlegging the Border
• The Women’s Christian Temperance Union (WCTU)
pushed prohibition into legislation in Canada and the
• By 1921 provincial governments were overturning the
decision because of its unpopularity.
• The US, however, enforced it until 1933. Canadians sold
illegal alcohol over the border for about 10 years.
• With the new booming economy Canadians were
afforded more opportunities to enjoy the luxuries
• Motor cars were becoming affordable and popular.
• Telephone lines were becoming commonplace for
all houses in cities.
• Professional sports were also increasing in
• As a way to take a break from writing so many
notes you will now be given time to use the
more creative part of your brain!
• Create an Acrostic poem on the Winnipeg
General Strike. The Chanak Crisis, the
Progressive Party or the Women’s Christian
The Group of Seven
• The group was made of painters from the 1920s
(Franklin Carmichael, Lawren Harris, A. Y. Jackson,
Frank Johnston, Arthur Lismer, J. E. H.
MacDonald, and Frederick Varley).
• They were influenced by European Impressionism
had bright colours, unique brush styles,
interesting view angles, and a large inclusion of
• Emily Carr was from Victoria and is
considered one of Canada’s most important
• She was impressed by the Group of 7 and
took this style to her paintings of the west
The Forgotten Ones…
• Even after serving in WWI Aboriginal people were still not
legally considered adult people.
• Reserve conditions were poor.
• Aboriginal peoples were split on whether they should
accept a British style of living.
• The Potlatch, an important Aboriginal celebration, was
banned and people were thrown in jail.
• The government had been taking land from Aboriginal
people as they saw fit.
The Forgotten Ones…
The Allied Tribes
• Formed in 1916 to protect Aboriginal land and protest the
racist decisions they faced from the government.
• They wanted to seek a resolution to land claims in BC
through negotiations with the federal and provincial
• In 1927 they were made illegal by the federal government
who changed the Indian Act.
• For more extensive information, see “Native Issues”
power point, in a file folder near you.
The Forgotten Ones…
• African immigrants were discouraged but
never blocked from immigrating.
• Some provinces set up a separate school
system and many public areas excluded
The Forgotten Ones…
• Employers often welcomed new
immigrants to Canada because it was
assumed they would work cheaper.
• For this reason unions hated immigrants.
They believed immigrants cut down the
wages they could achieve.
And Then It Crashed…
• By 1927 the price of wheat was dropping
and the world market showed weakness.
• People still believed that the post-war
world had infinite economic possibilities
and that things would keep getting better.
Stock Market Crash
• Then, on ‘Black Tuesday,’ a flurry of stocks
• People lost billions and rushed to protect
the money they had.
• The great depression was on…
Crowd gathering on Wall
Street after the 1929 crash
Questions for Thought
1. Why is art important in history? What does it
2. Why was the stock market crash felt so heavily?
Was the world prepared?
3. Who was Emily Carr? What do you think her art
can do for Victoria and western Canada more