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Biography of the Day

COCHRANE, FRANCIS – Volume XIV (1911-1920)

d. 22 Sept. 1919 in Ottawa


Responsible Government

Sir John A. Macdonald

From the Red River Settlement to Manitoba (1812–70)

Sir Wilfrid Laurier

Sir George-Étienne Cartier


The Fenians

Women in the DCB/DBC

The Charlottetown and Quebec Conferences of 1864

Introductory Essays of the DCB/DBC

The Acadians

For Educators

The War of 1812 

Canada’s Wartime Prime Ministers

The First World War

Prince Edward Island’s Integration into the Canadian Economy

The terms of agreement that brought Prince Edward Island into confederation in 1873 included the guarantee of “continuous communication with the railway systems of the Dominion” [see Prince Edward Island (1873)]. The biographer of the businessman and politician George William HOWLAN points out the practical obstacles:

“This commitment was difficult to keep, especially in wintertime, when the province was surrounded by ice. After the failure of a series of government-subsidized steamers, Islanders became convinced that the only secure link to the mainland would be a rail tunnel under the Northumberland Strait. Howlan seized on the issue and raised it in the Senate. In fact, he stood to make more than political points on a tunnel: in 1886 he formed a company to build the project in return for complete ownership of the Prince Edward Island Railway and an annual operating subsidy. His colleagues in parliament, however, were not listening, then or later.”

For more information on the economic issues that affected Prince Edward Island’s entry into confederation, consult the following biographies.

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