In the Name of Progress
Home Radio Television CBC Learning
CAPH banner left CAPH banner centre CAPH banner right
Years of Hope and Anger
In the Name of Progress
Header 3 Header 4 Header 5
History Home
In the Name of Progress
People are transferred and communities demolished in the name of a new religion called progress

"They took our homes, they moved us out of Africville. The city moved us out of Africville in the city's garbage trucks. We had it a lot better out there than in some of the places they put us in the city." - Daisy Carvery, former-resident Africville

Read these indepth articles about
In the Name of Progress


Newfoundland's Lost Outports
Thousands are moved from tiny fishing villages and a way of life ends
Victims of the Times
Halifax's oldest black neighbourhood is demolished and a beloved community destroyed
East Coast Exodus
Young people must choose between unemployment and exile as tough times hit the Atlantic provinces
During the 1960s and 1970s, progress became a religion in Canada that lay waste to traditional ways.

Around the country, people were pushed aside in the name of progress. In Toronto, Montreal and Halifax, whole neighbourhoods, mostly working class, were razed and tight-knit communities destroyed to satisfy government's appetite for development and renewal.

End of Africville
In the 1960s, Halifax's oldest black neighbourhood was one of the most controversial victims of the times

The derelict area was called Africville, located in the northern end of the Halifax peninsula. Africville was the ramshackle home to some of the descendants of the American slaves who had fled to Canada more than 150 years earlier.

In 1964, the city decided that Africville must be razed and the 70 families moved to housing elsewhere in the city. At the time, Halifax was intent on developing the area as part of some ambitious post-war renewal projects.

Lost outports
In Newfoundland, the march of progress helped destroy a coastal culture that had existed for hundreds of years.

Between the mid-1950s and the early 1970s, the Newfoundland government led by Premier Joey Smallwood closed 250 coastal villages. Thirty thousand people were uprooted and relocated to larger villages and towns.

Smallwood argued that resettlement in larger communities would reduce government expenditures on education, health care and social service. Smallwood also wanted to wean Newfoundlanders from the cyclical and risky business of fishing, to retrain them for other work.

Youth exodus
But the religion of process didn't mean salvation for the Atlantic provinces. The region was too dependent on traditional industries such as mining and fishing. Industrial development continued to lag behind the rest of Canada.

Young people were forced to choose between unemployment and exile as their homeland failed to enjoy the prosperity of the era. Between 1956 and 1973 almost one million people left the Atlantic provinces.


top of page


Last Topic:
Challenging the Status Quo

Current Topic:
In the Name of Progress

Nationalist Passions
Canadians toast their country while Quebecers embrace their own nation
read more...

Challenging the Status Quo
Baby-boomers come of age and reject the constraints of the past
read more...

Return to Africville
CBC This Morning online

history home | explore the episodes | biographies | teacher resources | bibliography | games and puzzles | sitemap | contact us
cbc home | tv episode summaries | merchandise | press releases | behind the scenes | audio/video

copyright 2001 CBC