Canada on the Doorstep: 1939 by William Rayner

By William Rayner

A few years are extra unbelievable than others, and 1939 used to be no exception. Canada used to be a unique position: steak was once twenty-nine cents a pound and a brand-new Ford coupe may be got for simply $856. It was once a 12 months while the king and queen toured Canada and wowed to exploit a showbiz time period everybody from Toronto and Vancouver to Gogama and Craigellachie.

It was once additionally a 12 months whilst Canada wavered at the doorstep of a clouded destiny: isolation and neutrality or the ongoing embody of the British Empire? The onset of struggle and the Royal stopover at settled all that as best Minister William Lyon Mackenzie King chase away exterior and inner threats to maintain the tapestry of nationwide cohesion from unraveling.

Through Canada at the Doorstep you'll notice the births, deaths, storms, foreign intrigue, and politics that made 1939 so memorable.

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One was Santa Fe, which had begun operating the deservedly famous Super Chief between Chicago and Los Angeles in 1948. Amtrak had taken over the route, but Santa Fe’s chairman, John Reed, was so distressed at the level of service being provided that he indignantly withdrew permission for Amtrak to use the Super Chief name. That decision was never reversed. indd 28 12/1/10 10:48 AM Amtrak to the Rescue 29 of the company’s better trains, Amtrak continues to call it the Southwest Chief. Too Many Trains, Not Enough Dollars Despite these very serious concerns, Amtrak’s biggest problem continued to be a financial one.

It will be time well spent, I promise you. com/schedules, or (2) by calling the nationwide toll-free number, 1-800-USA-RAIL. It may take a week or more to arrive. Just be sure to ask for the National Timetable (sometimes referred to as the System Timetable), which includes schedules for all coast-to-coast Amtrak trains. indd 44 12/1/10 10:48 AM Planning Your Own Train Trip 45 Timetable, which provides a detailed schedule of trains running between New York and Boston. You may want to ask for both.

But it also created a half-private, half-public company—eventually known as Amtrak—that would take over the job of providing the country with a nationwide passenger rail system. Although a bit short on specifics, the bill was nevertheless a commitment of support for passenger trains by the federal government. It was also pretty much a bipartisan effort. ) The funding method devised to launch Amtrak was pretty complicated. Essentially it allowed private railroads to make cash payments, which would provide start-up funding for Amtrak while giving the railroads permission to get out of the passenger business.

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