« AnteriorContinuar »
food of the best and the strongest is taken up for their diet. But no strong drink of any kind is allowed, nor is any
within reach of the men. There cannot be mucli work that is harder, and it is done amidst the snows and
frosts of a Canadian winter: yet it is done with the assistance of no stronger drink than tea.
4. The wages vary from thirteen to thirty dollars a month (besides board and lodging). The men who cut down the trees receive more than those who hew them when down, and these again more than the under class who make the roads and clear the ground. The operation requiring the most skill is that of marking the trees for the axe. The largest only are worth cutting, and form and soundness must also be considered.
5. But if I were about to visit a party of lumberers in the forest I should not be disposed to pass a whole winter
with them. I would go up in the spring, when the rafts are being formed in the small tributary streams, and I would come down upon one of them, shooting the rapids of the rivers as soon as the first freshets had left the way open.
A freshet in the rivers is the rush of waters occasioned by melting snow and ice. With the freshets the streams become for a time navigable, and the rafts go down. These rafts are of immense construction, and often contain timber to the value of four thousand pounds.
6. At the rapids the large rafts are divided into smaller portions, which go down separately. The excitement and motion of such transit must be very joyous. I was told that the Prince of Wales desired to go down a rapid on a raft, but that the men in charge would not undertake to say that there was no danger. The sailor prince who came after his brother was allowed to go down a rapid, and got, as I was told, rather a rough bump as he
7. Ottawa is the great place for these timber rafts. Indeed it may be called the head-quarters of the timber for the world. Nearly all the best pine wood comes down the Ottawa and its tributaries. The timber from the Ottawa and St. Maurice finds its way down the St. Lawrence to Quebec. - Trollope's North America
LESSON 54.-DIVISIONS AND TOWNS.—I.
1. The Dominion of Canada includes the following provinces :-Ontario and Quebec (forming together Canada Proper), New Brunswick, Nova Scotia (with Cape Breton Island), Prince Edward's Island, Manitoba (Ma'-ni-to-ba"), British Columbia (with Vancouver Island), and the North
west Territories. Newfoundland has hitherto refused to join this union of provinces.
2. The general government of the Dominion is in the hands of a governor-general appointed by the Queen, and a parliament consisting of a Senate and a House of Commons elected by the people. Each province has a lieutenant-governor appointed by the governor-general, and a separate parliament for the management of its own affairs. Newfoundland being a separate colony, has a governor
of its own. 3. The province of Ontario or Upper Canada extends along the north of the great lakes of the St. Lawrence. Its climate and soil are very favourable to the production of heavy crops of corn, roots, and fruits. Timber is abundant. The lakes and rivers afford good water communication, and a never-failing supply of fish.
4. Toronto is the capital of the province and the great lake port. It is situated upon a fine bay on the northwest shore of Lake Ontario, 333 miles from Montreal, and contains 86,000 people. The streets are all straight, and many of the footways are paved with planks. The trade is in farm produce, furs, and skins.
5. Ottawa (27,000 inhabitants), beautifully situated on a height overlooking the Ottawa River, is the capital of the Dominion. The houses of parliament are very handsome buildings. The lumber trade and flour mills provide the principal employments here. The other important towns of this province are Kingston, a port on Lake Ontario at the entrance of the canal connecting the lake with the Ottawa River; and London, on the Thames, in the centre of a fine farming district.
6. The province of Quebec, or Lower Canada, comprises the basin of the St. Lawrence from the Ottawa River to the sea.
The climate is colder than that of Ontario,
and suits oats better than wheat. This district was originally colonized by French settlers, whose descendants still form the majority of the inhabitants.
7. The city of Quebec is the principal port of British North America. It is built upon and at the base of a promontory between the St. Lawrence and its tributary
the St. Charles. Cape Diamond, the extremity of the promontory, is 300 feet high, and presents an almost perpendicular face to the St. Lawrence; its summit is crowned by a strongly fortified citadel. It was in the battle fought outside this fortress, then in possession of the French, that the conqueror of Canada, General Wolfe, lost his life.
8. Quebec was founded by the French in 1608 and is the oldest city in British America. The streets are narrow and often steep; many of the buildings have quite an ancient appearance. Three-fourths of the people
speak French. The river here is a mile wide, and is navigable for vessels of 4000 tons; the mouth of the St Charles forms a commodious basin for the shipping. Ship-building yards and wharves line the shores of both rivers. There are extensive saw-mills on the right bank of the St. Lawrence, and timber-rafts are moored along
the shores for some six miles up the left bank of the river. The population of Quebec is 60,000.
3. Montreal, the largest city and the second port of the Dominion, is built on the island of Montreal at the confluence of the St. Lawrence and the Ottawa, 620 miles from the sea. It is a handsome city, has fine streets, quays, and wharves, and can be reached by vessels of large tonnage. Its importance is due to its position at the point where ocean navigation ends, and river, lake, and canal navigation begins.