On-to-Ottawa Trek National Historic Event

Regina, Saskatchewan
On-to-Ottawa Trek (© Expired)
On-to-Ottawa Trek
(© Expired)
Address : Regina, Saskatchewan

Recognition Statute: Historic Sites and Monuments Act (R.S.C., 1985, c. H-4)
Designation Date: 1997-09-22

Other Name(s):
  • On-to-Ottawa Trek  (Designation Name)

Importance: Culmination of failure of Canada's depression-era relief projects for unemployed single men


Existing plaque: Fredrick W. Hill Mall Regina, Saskatchewan

A defining event of the Great Depression, the On-to-Ottawa Trek has become a poignant symbol of working class protest. In 1935, over a thousand angry unemployed men left federal relief camps in British Columbia and boarded boxcars to take their demand for work and wages directly to Ottawa. As the number of protesters increased, the federal government resolved to stop the movement. The police arrested its leaders at a public meeting on July 1st, sparking the Regina Riot. Although it never reached Ottawa, the Trek marked the failure of the Depression-era work camps as a solution to widespread unemployment.