32ONTHAAL AAN CANADA!

Ships like the Beaverbrae carried thousands of Dutch immigrants to Canada.
Ships like the Beaverbrae carried thousands of Dutch immigrants to Canada.
After World War Two, new industries were luring many young Canadians away from their parentsí farms and into the cities. All over the country, farmers were realizing they needed to find labourers to help keep their farms going. The Canadian government recognized this problem, and worked with European governments to encourage people to emigrate to Canada. Although immigrants of many nationalities came to Canada during this time, two of the biggest groups to arrive in the Sydenham River watershed were the Portuguese and the Dutch.

Following World War Two, the Dutch economy was in ruins, and the government was unable to support its booming population. Programs were set up in cooperation with the Canadian government to encourage Dutch farm labourers to emigrate to Canada. Many Dutch immigrants thought of Canada fondly, remembering the Canadian soldiers who had liberated Holland from German occupation.

Immigrants came over by boat, a journey that lasted at least 10 days. While some were lucky enough to come over on a passenger ship, most traveled on troop carriers from World War Two. The voyage was rough, and many were sick. Once they arrived in Halifax, many still had to take a two-day journey by train to get to the Sydenham River area, where they could find work as farm labourers.

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