Tuesday, 28 April 2009

US to Canada border crossings

Last week I copied here a press release from Ancestry.ca on a new database just made available containing the names of 1.6 million people crossing from the US to Canada between 1906 and 1935.

Graphed to the left are the year by year figures. When your ancestor crossed was it as part of a large movement, or against the tide?

I wasn't surprised to see the peak in 1912, the year of the greatest ever immigration to Canada, but was by the smaller peak at the start of the Depression. Does the sharp peak in 1917 may reflect the US entry into the Great War and men rushing to Canada to join up, or to avoid the US draft?


GW said...

Interesting statistics on border crossings. In 1917, the peak may be accounted for by the activities of the British Recruiting Mission in the US. This was an official effort to recruit British-born American residents for the Canadian Expeditionary Force. Reports suggest that close to 2200 men were recruited in this way, altho this number may not account for the "peak" in border crossings. I doubt very much that there were many US "draft dodgers" in 1917, but if someone has numbers, I would be interested in seeing them. Good post, keep up the good work.

BMO AIG Canada said...

Interesting statistics indeed. I'd love to see these stats for the year 1968 or so. That was the real "draft dodgers" era because of the Vietnam War. Nice post, thanks for sharing,


Arnie Schwartz said...

I tried this new addition to Ancestry.ca and was surprised to find my father's July 22, 1928 record, when he was 15 1/2 years old and took a Canadian Pacific Railroad train from Massachusetts to Sutton, Quebec. He was traveling alone to visit with his relatives in Montreal. Apparently, he neglected to obtain written permission from his legal guardians to travel to Canada. Therefore, he was denied entry into Canada and sent back to Massachusetts. My father never told me of this event in his life. if anyone is interested in viewing this US to Canada Border Crossing entry, just look for my father's name Philip Meyerovitz or Philip A. Marovitz, as he attempted to cross twice in the same day!

Arnold Marovitz Schwartz