Musée du Bas-Saint-Laurent

The rail network in 1878

An old coloured map illustrating the Grand Trunk Railway network, from Chicago to Halifax.

Detailed view of the Grand Trunk Railway brochure Shortest and Most Direct Route Between All Points East and West, presenting the arrival and departure schedules (July 1, 1878).

Private coll.

During this period, the railway served not just Canada’s largest cities—Toronto, Montréal, Halifax, Saint John—but also the American Northeast, passing through Chicago, Detroit, Buffalo, New York, Boston and Portland. The Grand Trunk also connected to complimentary Canadian and American lines.

This 1878 map shows the eastern provinces, which joined the Confederation starting in 1867: Ontario, Quebec, New Brunswick and Nova Scotia. Prince Edward Island joined in 1873. The western provinces, Manitoba (1870) and British Columbia (1871) are not shown, since the railroad was developed there quite a bit later.

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