During the Great Depression in the 1930’s, the Canadian government found themselves in a stock market crash that would cause the country to go down in their wealth. Canada found their unemployment rate was souring with up to 27% of men unemployed due to employers not being able to pay them. Prime Minister of Canada, Mackenzie King found himself trying to come up with solutions with the rest of world leaders like the states and how they’re going to fix this worldwide problem that they’re facing .However, they were eventually able to find solutions to help overcome the economic depression in ways that were no good for the peace of our world or individuals, but still helped defeat it. Canadians overcame this during the second world war creating jobs for men and women in factories, relief systems supported by the municipalities and just simply learning to cope with it with time.
To begin, if there were no second world war, who would know how long the depression would have lasted. Although WWII was a devastating time for many, it helped end the worldwide economic depression. The need for supplies was at an all-time high due to the war and jobs in airplane and chemical factories, aluminum works, lumber processing, are just few of the many places that began to employ thousands of unemployed men and later on women too. Because of these jobs being put on the market, men and women were able to buy more food for their families. This found Canada’s employment rate to quickly recover.
Although relief camps were no good, they were still able to help single men pay their bills. In the 1930’s, the Canadian Federal Government came up with “Unemployment relief camps” and paid their workers only one-tenth of what an employed man would make at the time which concluded that they were only getting paid 20 cents. In these camps, men did physically demanding labour because this was better than not eating and not paying the bills, which proves how desperate the Canadian society has gotten during this time .
During the worldwide economic depression, the only thing civilians had left to do was to cope with and trust that time will heal this. Six years into the depression, Canadians began to adapt to it and cope to this lifestyle like “an animal adapting to its surroundings.” One of the many ways they would do this is by listening to popular music that was put out. Songs they considered popular and uplifting was “Happy Days are Here Again”. As time went on, citizens felt as if this depression was unbeatable and the music that was being produced became dull and sad; for example, a song called “Star Dust” and “Night and Day” are both songs talking about how blue the society has become due to the economic crash and with the worst time of the crisis.
“Here are words from a song popular in 1935 and 1936.”
“Got a handful of nothing
And I watch it like a hawk
Well I’m doin’ O.K.
I’m livin’ I a great big way
I’m the salt in the ocean
I’m the sun in the sky
I’m a Franklin D. Roosevelt
I’m a million dollars long as i
Got a snap in my finger
Got a wiggle in my walk
Got the devil to pay
I’m livin’ in a great big way.”
Another way they would keep themselves entertained was through a dance called the jitterbug, the Charleston and swing dances.
All in all, the Great Depression was dreadful time for many people in Canada including the children. Solving this problem was a huge problem for the government, but with the Second World War taking place