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MANITOBA AND THE GREAT NORTH-WEST.
The Dominion as a whole-Its Extent and Area-Nova Scotia–New Brunswick
Prince Edward Island-Quebec-Ontario-Keywadin-Manitoba-North-West Ter. ritories—British Columbia--North-West and Manitoba a vast Plain-Southern or Prairie Section–Middle or Partially Wooded Section-Region of Continuous ForestBasin of Lake Winnipeg-Its Rivers and Lakes—Mackenzie River Basin—The Churchill and Nelson Rivers— General View of the Rocky Mountains.
The Dominion of Canada includes at present all British America, except Newfoundland, which still elects to remain a Crown colony. Beginning at the East, it includes the Provinces of Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, and Prince Edward Island. These were formerly called the Maritime Provinces. Upper and Lower Canada are now Ontario and Quebec. Manitoba and the North-West Territories extend from the boundary of Ontario to the crest of the Rocky Mountains, and west of this range and the 120th Meridian lies British Columbia, which includes the two old Crown colonies of Vancouver's Island and British Columbia.
This vast domain extends from the Atlantic to the Pacific, and is equal in size to the United States, or a square of 1,770 miles. It includes about 3,000,000 square miles.
The Province of Nova Scotia consists of the Peninsula of Nova Scotia and the Island of Cape Breton. These lie to the south-east of New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island, and form the most eastern part of the Dominion. The Peninsula of Nova Scotia is of a triangular shape, and
is connected with New Brunswick by an isthmus sixteen miles wide. Its surface is undulating and picturesque and is dotted over with many small and beautiful lakes, which contain multitudes of fine fish.
Nova Scotia is rich in minerals, having no less than three extensive coal fields, which are destined, owing to the fostering care of its Government, at no distant day, to be a large source of revenue to the Province, as it owns the mines and receives a royalty on all coal taken from them. Iron, gypsum, and gold are not only abundant, and a source of present wealth to many, but hold out future prospects of large returns for foreign investments. The best agricultural lands of Nova Scotia are situated at the head of the Bay of Fundy, though the soil almost everywhere is good. Nova Scotia has been long noted for its apples, of which vast quantities are shipped to England.
Halifax, the capital of Nova Scotia, is situated on one of the finest harbors in America. Owing to its proximity to the Gulf Stream, the harbor rarely freezes over. This fact and the position of the city as the terminus of the Intercolonial Railway have made Halifax the winter port of the Dominion. Owing to the excellent construction and management of the Intercolonial, it is fast growing in favor with the travelling public.
Besides farming and mining, a large number of the inhabitants are engaged in the coast and deep sea fisheries, which are very remunerative. Ship-building is extensively carried on and gives employment to numerous mechanics and others. On the whole, taking into consideration its mining, fishing, farming, and ship-building, Nova Scotia can support a far larger population in affluence than she now possesses.
New Brunswick lies northwest of Nova Scotia, and has many points in common, but differs in shape, being very compact and little broken by narrow bays. Numerous large bays indent its coast on the side of the Gulf, and here ship-building and lumbering operations are extensively carried on. The surface of the Province is very much diversified, and mountain and valley, noble rivers and clear lakes follow each other in quick succession throughout its whole extent. Much of the surface is still covered with forest, but along the rivers and in the valleys excellent farms and farming lands are to be seen.
This Province possesses three fine rivers which add much to its value, as by means of these the timber cut in the forests can be floated down to the sea or used in the construction of ships for which New Brunswick is justly noted. The St. John is 450 miles long, and is navigable from Fredericton, the capital, to its mouth, a distance of eighty-four miles. Small steamers ply on the river above the city for 120 miles further, or up to the Great Falls, which are eighty feet high. The Miramichi is 225 miles long and navigable for thirty miles from its mouth, which is very wide, and here many large ship-building establishments are located. The Restigouche is 200 miles long, and forms the boundary between Quebec and New Brunswick. Both the latter rivers flow into the Gulf of St. Lawrence, while the St. John empties into the Bay of Fundy.
Like Nova Scotia, New Brunswick possesses mines of coal and iron, and she has also abundance of lead, asphalt, granite, marble, and other valuable minerals. Besides timber and ships, her exports are grain, fish, iron, coal, lime, and gypsum. The resources of the Eastern Provinces have of late been greatly developed, and their trade is every month increasing in volume.
Prince Edward Island is very fertile and possesses a salubrious climate. Its inhabitants are chiefly engaged in farming and fishing, and are well repaid for their labor in both cases. The island is crescent-shaped, about 130 miles