Economy and Trade

What if I lose my job?

The Second World War brought many changes to Canada, including the advent of a program of unemployment insurance. This booklet explained what was, at the time, a revolutionary system of social welfare.

View PDF: PDF icon Unemp Ins Eng.pdf

War Contract Scandals

This collection of War Contract Scandals, investigated by the Public Accounts Committee, was released by the Liberal party to demonstrate the government's misuse of thousands of dollars, on such wastes as horses unfit for service, overpriced drugs, poor-quality binoculars, submarines rejected as unfit by other governments, and defective Shield-Shovels. Also included are the results of investigations by the special Boot Committee.

Wartime cutbacks

During the Second World War, the demands of the wartime economy meant that non-essential tasks - like the issuance of certain financial statements - had to be curtailed.

Serving the wartime economy

Charles McGrath was in charge of Canada's fuel supply during the First World War, and in this speech he discussed various ways in which Canadians could serve the war economy.

Canadian Federal Finance

This booklet, in many ways a response to an earlier work published by O.D. Skelton under the same name, examines war finance within the broader period of 1913 to 1926, to provide a "correct" perspective on postwar finance.

Canadian Federal Finance

In this booklet, O.D. Skelton writes of Canada's financial situation resulting from the war effort of the previous four years. He emphasizes the need for economic vigilance on the part of all Canadians.

Economic Stabilization in Wartime

The later war years witnessed a marked rise in the cost of living. This booklet addresses different means of stabilizing the wartime economy, and outlines the various reasons for and means of counteracting inflation.

The Hyde Park Declaration - Statement by William Lyon Mackenzie King

The Hyde Park Declaration of 1941 detailed an agreement between the United States and Canada to allow American-produced war materials made in Canada, for Britain, to be included in the Lend-Lease agreement. The United States, still neutral at the time, had passed legislation allowing for the production of war materials for the Allied countries, with payment to be made at a later date. The King government feared this would divert British orders in Canada to the United States, so Roosevelt and King devised the Hyde Park Declaration as a means to alleviate this concern.

Identification, please !

For many Canadians, the wartime requirement to carry identification at all times was a novelty. Folders like this one were widely distributed as a reminder that they might be asked to produce a registration certificate at any time.

Canada's Trade Policy and the War

Canada's wartime economy relied heavily on foreign trade. This pamphlet outlines Canada's trade policy procedures with emphasis on the import and export of commodities.

View PDF: PDF icon Trade Policy.pdf

Buy Canadian

This handbill, which bears a 1918 postmark from Maple Creek, Saskatchewan, reminded people of the need to buy Canadian-made products, to offset the amount of money being spent purchasing foreign-made munitions and war materials.

Mobilizing human resources

The requirement to register with the federal government became law in 1940, and by 1944 had been expanded to apply to every Canadian over the age of sixteen.

Trading with the world

The author, a First World War veteran and professor of economics at Queen's University, discusses the importance of international trade to Canada's prosperity.

Art in wartime - and after

Various Canadian artists argue for the entertainment, cultural, and spiritual value of designers and performers during wartime and peacetime.

Inspecting mail for cash

To prevent the drain of US currency from Canada, the government had the power to open mail to ensure that money was not being exported without permission.

Shipping pulp to Minnesota

The shipment of industrial materials was carefully regulated during the Second World War, especially when they were crossing an international border. Unbleached sulphite pulp is an ingredient used to make paper.

Registration of Andrew Woelfle, Paisley

During the First World War, all adult Canadians were required to carry a certificate confirming that they had been "registered for national purposes."

National Registration Certificate, 1940

Under the 1940 National Registration Regulations, every citizen had to carry proof of registration at all times. This card was issued to Nellie House of Hamilton, Ontario.