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The general attitude of authorities in cities all across the country seems to have been the same, "Keep them moving". From our own paper, February 23, 1929, (winter-time of course, and an un pleasant time to be riding the rods) we quote:
"Men of Leisure Are Kept Moving." Police say that in spite of cold weather many are "Travelling". That was the headline, then - "Despite the cold weather, the police state that there are many tramps, or men of leisure, passing through the city, and it is only through the continuous work of the city police that more men are not seen on the streets asking for assistance. Instead they are picked up by the police before they get on the avenue, and if they do not give a satisfactory account of themselves are told to leave the confines of the city, which they always do, knowing that if they are found they will be severely dealt with.
Police state, that they feel certain that one reason the city is as free as it is from serious crime is because of the department's activities in keeping these men moving, or watching them while they are in the ci ty".
It is a well known fact that hungry men can become desperate and dangerous, so maybe the police policy was good protection for the citizens, but what were the feelings of the men who were cold and hungry and "kept moving"?
Thus it was, that unemployment had become a serious problem even before the bottom fell out of the stock market later in the year. On that fateful day everyone was made to feel the seriousness of the situation, whether they knew anything about stock markets or not, by the effect it had on many previously wealthy men. A future without a fortune was unbearable for many distraught inves tors, and undertakers had a busy time fixing up the remains of the ones who either jumped from windows or blew their brains out.
Unemployment increased. Soup kitchens became a necessity.
Bloody riots took place in Regina. Resentment toward the Bennett government grew to the point where thousands of indignant, hungry, rebellious men set out to march on Ottawa. Not all of them made it that far, but a few very articulate ones did. Relief camps were set up soon after, and for working on such government park projects as Wasagaming, etc., men were given three meals a day and a little pocket money.
By March of 1934, there were 105,000 people in Manitoba on relief. The number for all of Canada was staggering. Folk in the