To celebrate the 150th anniversary of Canada’s Confederation, national, provincial and territorial archives — an historic collaboration of 14 institutions across Canada — have selected 150 images and stories that illustrate how people have traversed our nation over years, decades and centuries, with a major focus on the role of the railway.
This online exhibition, called The Ties that Bind Canada(link is external), gives life to the stories of those who came before us to form and bind communities through the development of transportation links over land, sea and ice.
The completion of Canada’s railway system and its impact on building our nation is the starting point for this online gallery, but it’s not the only story. Even today, the movement of people and goods in remote areas of Canada relies on ingenuity and alternate forms of transportation, sometimes in very harsh conditions.
“This is an outstanding collection of images that tell the story of our country,” said Education, Early Learning and Culture Minister Doug Currie. “I encourage Islanders to view the online exhibit or visit the Provincial Archives to learn more about the role of the railway in our history and development.”
Canada’s Indigenous Peoples are the original continental travelers and traders, inventing ways to move across remote areas like the interior and coastal edges of Nunavut where massive networks of trails were developed by Inuit.
This online exhibition was built for all Canadians to enjoy, but it’s also a valuable resource for students of Canadian history, educators, train enthusiasts and transportation fans.
Poring over photos of the great transportation networks of Canada is itself an act of exploration. Visitors to The Ties that Bind Canada may be surprised by the vastness of the northern Inuit transportation network or by the various ways people travelled from the prairies to coastal communities. The Ties that Bind Canada features 150 examples of the innovation, perseverance and ingenuity required in getting from place to place.
Text is written in both of Canada’s official languages, to encourage Canadians across the country to learn more about their communities, provinces and nation.
All aboard this commemorative #Canada150 project were Library and Archives Canada / Bibliothèque et Archives Canada, Yukon Archives, NWT Archives, Nunavut Archives Program, Royal British Columbia Museum and Archives, Provincial Archives of Alberta, Provincial Archives of Saskatchewan, Archives of Manitoba, Archives of Ontario, Bibliothèque et Archives nationales du Québec, Provincial Archives of New Brunswick, Nova Scotia Archives, Public Archives and Records Office of Prince Edward Island and The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, Newfoundland and Labrador.
The complete exhibit can be viewed at The Ties that Bind Canada(link is external). To see the Public Archives and Records Office’s contribution to The Ties that Bind Canada, visit Online Exhibits(link is external).