Winnipeg, now one of the best known cities in the Dominion, is spoken of as the Chicago of Canada. It has grown since 1870 from a small trading post with a population of some few hundreds to a fine modern city with some 130,000 (the local claim is 170,000) inhabitants. Situated at the junction of the Assiniboine and Red Rivers, forty miles south of Lake Winnipeg, the city has become the depot for the enormous trade of the Western provinces and is a business centre of the first importance. Its phenomenal growth is, of course, attributable to the agricultural development of the prairie country of the West, and as showing the importance of its situation, it may be mentioned that as the head-quarters of the Manitoba Inspection Division, over seventy-three million bushels of wheat alone were inspected there in 1909. More wheat is handled annually at this, point than even at St. Paul or Minneapolis, in fact, the total wheat transactions at Winnipeg are the largest of any city in the world. The number of cattle received at the stockyards in 1909 was 169,458, in addition to which 128,000 hogs and 24,200 sheep were also dealt with. The city is the seat of the Provincial Government of Manitoba, and is becoming an important educational centre, the University of Manitoba and the Provincial Board of Education being located there. Many of the largest manufacturers and mercantile houses in eastern Canada have found it necessary to establish branches in Winnipeg in order to cope with their Western trade, and the large factories, stores and other kinds of business premises which have been erected, have given the city an imposing aspect which was lacking but a few years since. Great improvements have been made in the direction of providing fine broad streets, avenues and boulevards, on the latter of which numbers of shade trees have been planted. There are nine parks tastefully laid out and cultivated under the control of the Public Parks Board and two other open spaces outside the city limits. The city is well lighted and served with street railways, and as steps have been taken to secure electric power generated on the river, rapid progress may be expected to take place in its industrial development.
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