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OUR HISTORY: September 1954

CCo-operator> editor Quincy Martinson decided to be a little more colourful than usual with prose describing the Dominion Bureau of Statistics crop estimate for Sept. 1954. Our main Sept. 23 headline was “Cosmopolitan home despoiled by vandals,” referring to more than 200 million bushels of wheat that had been robbed from the Prairies that year.

“It has taken some observers more than two months to discover the ‘thievery,’” he reported. “Others are still under the influence of twilight sleep, failing to awaken to the fact that the 1954 Prairie crops were born, passed through a critical period of adolescence, failed to reach full and healthy maturity, and ended their life cycle in a depressed autumn and an almost motionless harvest.”

The “vandals” included, “inundating rains spread over vast sections of Manitoba and Saskatchewan,” hail, and rust which “discarded its normal passage up the Red River Valley and made a detour through western Manitoba and enveloped most of Saskatchewan.”

“The picture is grey and depressing. But Western Canada and its people have before passed from the darkness of other years into the promise of brighter days,” Martinson concluded.

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