Why did so many immigrants choose Toronto over Montréal?

Toronto was already growing faster than Montréal in early twentieth century and was outgrowing Montréal as early as the 1930s. And it did so, in large part, because of international immigration. But why did so many immigrants choose Toronto over Montréal?

Lieu de naissance 1941The 1941 canadian census tells us that 65% of canadians born outside Canada were born in another british country or in the United States. Is it any surprise that those english speaking immigrants chose Toronto over Montréal?

Here is another thing that I have found in this 1941 census :

Autres pays européens 1941In the right half of the table, non bristish european countries of origine are listed. It took a while for me to notice, yet, once you see it, it is so obvious. Do you see anything odd?

France and Belgium are not even on the list. Odd.

We said it earlier, Toronto outgrew Montréal thanks to, in large part, international immigration. And I add that it outgrew Montréal thanks to british and english speaking international immigration.

 

 

 

Why did so many immigrants choose Toronto over Montréal?

In a recent post, I presented a graph that suggested that international immigration to Ontario was more important than migration from Québec to Ontario. Here is another interesting map about this :

Répartition de la population immigrante 1981This map is taken from the canadian 1981 census. One will note that, in 1981, 52,4% of the immigrant population in Canada lived in Ontario, this by far the largest share of the immigrant population. Ontario is followed by British Colombia, 16,3%, and Québec, 13,6%. Ontario historically (and still today) drained the largest share of international immigration to Canada. That’s why, in 1981, 23,6% of the ontarian population was born outside of Canada, which made at the time (and still today) Ontario the province having the largest proportion of immigrants, and greatly contributed to making Ontario the largest province of Canada.

Which still raises the question : why did so many immigrants choose Toronto over Montréal?

When did Toronto outgrow Montréal? Quand Toronto a-t-elle dépassé Montréal? Partie II

Difficile de le dire précisément. Voici cependant encore quelques faits intéressants et éclairants.

Dans les archives des recensements du Canada, on retrouve une carte donnant la densité de la population en 1851,1871, 1901 et 1921.Canadian_pop_from_1851_to_1921

Dans le coin inférieur gauche, un graphique illustre la répartition de la population par province en 1921. On peut y voir que la population de l’Ontario, fortement concentrée entre les lacs Ontario, Érié et Huron, représente 32,4% de la population du Canada et que la population du Québec, fortement concentrée dans les basses terres du Saint-Laurent, représente 26,% de la population.

Distribution de la population canadienne en 1921Un agrandissement de la carte nous permet de mieux voir les basses terres du Saint-Laurent et des Grands Lacs. Chaque petit point rouge sur cette carte représente 1000 personnes. Dans les agglomérations plus densément peuplées, les point sont remplacés par un cercle dont l’aire est proportionnelle à la population en une agglomération donnée.

Le lecteur attentif remarquera que, dans la région de Toronto, plusieurs grands cercles se chevauchent, davantage que dans la région de Montréal. Toronto était déjà à cette époque en train de devenir le centre d’une grappe de municipalités, une métropole au centre d’une conurbation.

Montréal comme telle, seule, était encore plus peuplée que Toronto comme telle, seule. C’est oublier la grande région métropolitaine entourant Toronto sans s’appeler Toronto.

Détail de la carte de 1921Les années vingt, c’est longtemps avant l’élection du Parti Québécois.

When did Toronto outgrow Montréal? Quand Toronto a-t-elle dépassé Montréal? Partie I

Difficile de le dire précisément. Voici cependant quelques faits intéressants et éclairants.

En 1941, la valeur totale des chèques compensés à Montréal était 9,904,907,000$ alors qu’à Toronto le total était de 11,344,826,471$. En 1946, l’impôt sur le revenu perçu à Montréal constituait 17,38% du total canadien alors que les torontois en payèrent 19,34%.

En 1941, il y avait 21,346 personnes employées dans la finance et l’assurance à Toronto et 19,661 à Montréal. En 1939, Toronto était responsable de 56,3% de la valeur totale des transactions boursières effectuées au Canada, tandis que la bourse de Montréal n’en était responsable que de 41,5%.

Les années quarante, c’est longtemps avant l’élection du Parti Québécois.

Source : Grandeur et déclin, L’Élite Anglo-Protestante de Montréal, Margaret W. Wesley, Libre Expression, p. 299 et 300.

Odd findings in the 1991 canadian census

Populations Québec Ontario lieu de naissance

In 1991, in Québec, 146,315 persons living in Québec were born in Ontario and 591,210 were born in a foreign country.

In 1991, in Ontario,  348,855 persons living in Ontario were born in Québec and 2,369,175 were born in a foreign country.

Looking at the graph above, can we conclude that Toronto outgrew Montréal because of the exodus of Montréalers fleeing the political situation? Or should we conclude that the population of Ontario (and Toronto’s along with it) outgrew the population of Québec (and Montréal’s along with it) because of international immigration?

Which raises the question : why did so many immigrants choose Toronto over Montréal?

Source : Statistics Canada, 1991 Census,https://archive.org/stream/1991933161992engfra#page/n14/mode/1up

Trudeau et le drapeau

Here is a quote from Trudeau that I find very interesting :

« Un des moyens de contrebalancer l’attrait du séparatisme, c’est d’employer un temps, une énergie et des sommes énormes au service du nationalisme fédéral. Il s’agit de créer de la réalité nationale une image si attrayante qu’elle rende celle du groupe séparatiste peu intéressante par comparaison. Il faut affecter une part des ressources à des choses comme le drapeau, l’hymne national, l’éducation, les conseils des arts, les sociétés de diffusion radiophonique et de télévision, les offices du film. » (Pierre Elliott Trudeau, Le fédéralisme et la société canadienne-française, 1967)

Pour moi, le drapeau du Canada m’apparaît comme une construction récente et artificielle, conçue consciemment dans le but de combattre un légitime désir d’indépendance.

The Auto Pact

The sixties. Toronto had been growing faster than Montréal for a while now. And then, suddently, Ontario’s economy is thriving even more, Toronto and its surrounding area are growing like never before. What happened? So many will blame the rise of Québec nationalism. But many seem to forget that the economy of Canada experienced a major shift in the sixties. Within a few years, the automotive industry supplanted the pulp and paper industry to become the number one industry in Canada. So, what happened? Canada and the United States signed The Auto Pact.

Before the adoption of the Auto Pact in 1965, the Canadian auto market was protected by tariffs. Only 3% of cars sold in Canada were produced in the United States and only 7% of cars manufactured in Canada were exported to the United States. However, despite the tariff protection, most of the parts used in the manufacture of cars in Canada were American-made.In 1965, Canada and the United States signed the Auto Pact. Canada eliminated its tariffs and opened its market to the US. In exchange, US manufacturers agreed to maintaining a production quota in Canada: 60% of cars sold in Canada would be manufactured in Canada. Canada also agreed not to sign such a treaty with another country.This trade agreement had a major impact on the Canadian economy. In 1968, only three years after signing the treaty, 60% of cars manufactured in Canada were exported to the United States and 40% of cars sold in Canada were produced in the United States.

Most of the jobs that resulted from this pact in Canada were created in southern Ontario. The automotive industry supplanted the pulp and paper industry to become the number one industry in Canada.

Why in southern Ontario? Because the capital of the US automobile was Detroit and so the Americans decided to settle in Windsor, which is just across the river from Detroit.

Détroit et Windsor
So, in exchange for opening its auto market to the US, Canada got a quota of production for Canada. However, the Canadian market consists of cars purchased in Ontario, Quebec, in the West and in the Maritime provinces. But Canada did not request production quotas for each of these regional markets. The Canadian industry became concentrated in Ontario, next to Detroit, capital of the US automobile industry.
What would have happened if we had said that since the Quebec market accounts for a quarter of the Canadian market, a quarter of production quotas should be allocated to Quebec? Would we not have also developed our own auto industry? Why not? We build many trains, subway cars and airplanes.The access to the Quebec market was used to develop an industry in Ontario. And since our domestic market no longer had the protection of tariffs, how could a Quebec auto industry grow? Not to mention that the Auto Pact prohibited Canada from signing such a treaty with other countries, thus blocking other potential international opportunities.This was an agreement that changed the face of the Canadian economy, it was a political decision where we swapped access to the Quebec market for a deal that benefited only southern Ontario.

In addition, before the Auto Pact, Canada had a large trade deficit with the United States in the automotive sector DESPITE the tariff protection. Can we therefore conclude that it was cheaper to produce cars in the United States? Can we logically conclude that it costs more to produce cars in Canada? Can we then conclude then that the higher cost of production slightly increased the selling price of cars? Can we therefore assume that manufacturers have made us pay a little more for cars that we buy in order to finance their investments in southern Ontario? Are we to understand that for political, geographical and geopolitical reasons, part of the capital, the fruit of our work, has been channeled to enrich Ontario?And since the end of the Auto Pact in 2001, with the rise of the Canadian dollar, the financial crisis of 2008 and competition from Asian manufacturers, the Ontario auto industry has seen some difficult times. Fear not, the federal government is always there to bail out Ontario’s auto industry. The federal government invested $10.6 billion in order to rescue General Motors Canada in 2009, and 20% of this money came from Quebec taxpayers.

So after using the access to our market to develop an industry in Ontario and after ensuring that we pay a little more for our cars in order to benefit Ontario, the federal government still bleeds us a little more in order to bail out Ontario.

This is not a vast conspiracy, it is simply the geopolitical and economic forces which, on the scale of a continent, are draining our strengths and resources beyond our borders. This is the fate of a nation deprived of its sovereignty.

These events ocurred before the 1976 election of the Parti Québécois.
(Merci à l’auteur du blogue Why Québec Needs Independence pour la traduction de ce billet.)