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The archival concept of competence: a case study of the federal administration of agriculture in Canada,… Stewart, Kelly Anne 1994

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THE ARCHIVAL CONCEPT OF COMPETENCE:A CASE STUDY OF THE FEDERAL ADMINISTRATION OFAGRICULTURE IN CANADA, 1867-1989byKELLY ANNE STEWARTB.A., The University of British Columbia, 1991A THESIS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OFTHE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OFMASTER OF ARCHIVAL STUDIESinTHE FACULTY OF GRADUATE STUDIESSchool of Library, Archival and Information StudiesWe accept this thesis as conforming to the required standardTHE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIAJanuary 1994© Kelly Anne Stewart, 1994In presenting this thesis in partial fulfilment of the requirements for an advanceddegree at the University of British Columbia, I agree that the Library shall make itfreely available for reference and study. 1 further agree that permission for extensivecopying of this thesis for scholarly purposes may be granted by the head of mydepartment or by his or her representatives. It is understood that copying orpublication of this thesis for financial gain shall not be allowed without my writtenpermission.Department of ( (V’&TIC( STjO13The University of British ColumbiaVancouver, CanadaDate____________DE-6 (2188)AbstractThis thesis sets out to explain how spheres of responsibility orcompetences are assigned in the administration of government functions inorder to assess the ways in which archivists can come to terms with increasinglyrapid rates of administrative change in the performance of their work. Itexamines statutes and government publications to present a picture of theevolution of the competence of agencies of the government of Canada givenresponsibility for carrying out activities in administration of the function ofagriculture.It is found that knowledge of the assignment of functional responsibility isessential to a number of archival tasks. It is vital to know all the bodiesparticipating in carrying out the function when appraising records. A vital part ofidentifying the external structure of a fonds lies in determining the competence ofthe agencies creating records in it, and this knowledge must be effectivelycommunicated in archival description. Finally, the concepts of function,competence, and activity, if clearly understood, can guide the development ofvocabularies to assist users of archives to find loci of administrative actionrelevant to searches they are undertaking.Accumulating information about the functions, competences, and activitiesof organizations and keeping it current can serve many purposes in theadministration of records during the entire life cycle. Organizations need thisinformation to control and provide access to records for administrative purposesand to facilitate secondary access under freedom of information and privacylegislation or for historical research purposes. The method of analyzing howfunctional activity employed in this study can be used for all governmentorganizations in Canada.11Table of ContentsAbstract iiTable of Contents iiiINTRODUCTION IChapter One Functional Responsibility and the Governmentof Canada 10Chapter Two 1867-1918: The Formative Years 18Chapter Three Agriculture in Transition: 1918-1945 38Chapter Four 1945-1989: Expansion and Specialization 58Chapter Five Implications for Practice 71Bibliography 79111IntroductionGovernment activities expand directly in response to laws passed by thesovereign legislature. These laws define spheres of activity and assign them toa responsible person or body. The structure of government then grows toaccommodate the management of such activities. This growth has had atremendous effect on the production on public records. With new activitiesultimately follow new records. It is a principal task of archival science to providean explanation of the facts of the matter of how structure evolves so that allusers can approach archives with a proper understanding of their context ofcreation. Often what makes it difficult to understand the nature of the records inany given functional sphere is that the agencies which have created them havebeen so many and varied. The lines of government responsibility are so fluidthat over time activity in any functional sphere could be assigned to manydifferent agencies. The statutes which bring activity into existence will stategenerally the responsible agency, but that agency may have any number ofbranches and divisions which are organized and re-organized year after year.Thus, the attempt to identify records with administrative structure must deal withthe fact that structure constantly evolves. What is needed is a conceptual linkbetween record and structure that allows the user to travel through the shiftingstructure. This thesis maintains that a large part of the solution is to understandadministration as an evolving system of delegation of function and activity, andto examine how functional responsibility is carried out as a means of explainingchanging structures.Bell’s and Pascoe’s book The Ontario Government: Structure andFunctions is a description of the various agencies of a government and theirspheres of functional activity.’ Such studies are useful only to gain a snapshotof the government at one particular point in time. By the time such a book ispublished the study is out of date because of the evolving nature of governmentstructure and activities. Because archival systems must deal with the records oforganizations over time, the problem for archivists is how to characterizeadministrative change over time and understand and communicate how suchchange effects the records.The notion that function and records creation are linked has long beenrecognized in archival literature. Muller, Feith and Fruin’s Manual for theArrangement and Description of Archives recognizes the link between recordsand function: “if the function or rights of one administrative body passes toanother, the archives accompany them.”2 Sir Hilary Jenkinson also states thatthe records of an organization follow function. If a new agency carries on thefunction, the records of a predecessor are usually placed in the custody of thenew administration which takes over that function.3Continuing in this tradition, American archivist Margaret Cross Nortonobserved: “It is a rule in government that records follow functions. That is tosay, when a department is abolished, merged into another department orotherwise reorganized, its functions are generally transferred to anotherdepartment, which of course must have the old records at hand to carry on theBell, Andrew D. Pascoe, The Ontario Government: Structure and Functions, (Toronto: Wall &Thompson Ltd., 1988).2S. Muller, J.A. Feith, and R. Fruin, Manualfor the Arrangement and Description ofArchives, (NewYork: H.W. Wilson Company, 1968, 2nd. ed.), p. 24.3Hiiary Jenkinson, A Manual ofArchive Administration, (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1922), p. 33.2old functions.”4 She also observed that “records shall be considered as being apart of the last department which exercised the functions.”5 Her study ofadministrative change led her to believe that “for the most part ... functions arefairly well expressed by division or subdepartmental headings,” that is, that thename of the creating body would indicate the nature of its functionalresponsibility.6 Norton’s rule that records are associated with the latest entity tohave responsibility for a particular functional sphere and her reliance onstructure to facilitate understanding is very traditional.Michel Duchein, in his 1977 article on respect des fonds, makes thedistinction between external structure, how an organization organizes itself forbusiness, and internal structure, how records are organized in the variousbranches and divisions of the organization.7 This thesis looks at how externalstructure evolves by the delegation of authority to act in defined functionalspheres of responsibility. Duchein recognizes that the essential problem ofidentification of archives is to come to terms with changes in external structureand the effects of those changes on internal structure. He identifies four types ofchanges in the powers, or competences, of agencies creating records. Theyare: a) abolition of powers when they are no longer needed; b) assignment ofnew powers to an agency; c) transfer of powers from one agency to anotherwithin the organization; d) temporary assignment of powers to an agency.8 It is4Margaret Cross Norton, “Classification and Description of Archives”, from Norton on Archives: TheWritings ofMargaret Cross Norton on Archival and Records Management, Thornton W. Mitchell, ed.,(Society of American Archivists, 1979), p. 110.5Jbid., p. 111.p. 113.7Michel Duchein, “Theoretical Principles and Practical Problems ofRespect des Fonds in ArchivalScience, Archivaria 16 (Summer 1983).p. 71.3these changes that will be documented within the realm of agriculture in thisthesis.Duchein recognizes that structure, while unstable, plays a “definite part ofthe powers of the agency.”9 He proposes two solutions to instability. The firstsolution is the arrangement of the fonds chronologically, to show a stablestructure for a period of time and then show the new structure. The second is toavoid using administrative units as a basis for arrangement in cases wherechanges are frequent.’° While Duchein does not go into detail on what shouldbe used in place of structure in the latter case, he does acknowledge that somemeans of dealing with structural change needs to be found in order to portraythe dynamic quality of the archival fonds.The series system, conceived by Australian archivists, to which MichelDuchein was responding in his article, divides information about agencies frominformation about records, and tries to record all the facts about administrativechange in descriptions of agencies. Peter Scott, C.D. Smith and G. Finlay,writing about the effects of administrative change on archives as experienced inAustralia, speak of “‘functional sovereignty’ over records, in that a departmentbecomes responsible for the records documenting a function allocated to it.”However, they advocate a careful tracing of all the agencies which had a hand increating records in any given functional sphere of activity as a means ofindicating the history of each series and recording the true facts of administrativechange. They argue that administrative change is so common, and its effects sovaried and unpredictable, that the only solution is to link series with all the9Jbid., p. 78.10Jbid., p. 79-80.11P.J. Scott, C.D. Smith, G. Finlay, “Archives and Administrative Change: Some Methods andApproaches (Part 2), Archives and Manuscripts Vol.7, number 4, April 1979, P. 151.4agencies which created them, had control over them, or took custody of them.There is no lasting place to put them, either physically or intellectually, for theyhave a complicated “multiprovenanced history, which archival systems ofarrangement, description, and access must record. Thus, they see a tracing ofchange in functional responsibility as a means of explaining how records moveabout in administration, and believe that function can be used as a means toassist researchers to find the various locations in administration over time ofrecords generated in any given functional area.’2In the end, the series system simply links all agencies with all the seriesof records which they have had a hand in generating, controlling, or had custodyof. While the series system attempts to deal with the maze of structural change,it does so in a manner which fails to place records in their administrativestructure, creating free-floating records entities. The series system lacks thecontext that the traditional system has built in. Thus, concentration on functiondoes not make the problem of structure disappear. Records must still beassociated with the agency or agencies that generated them.Part of the problem of dealing with function is that the term is used in somany different senses in archival literature. In his book, Modern Archives:Principles and Techniques, the American archivist Theodore Schellenberg,defines the term and shows how it relates to the activities carried out byorganizations. He defined function as “all the responsibilities assigned to anagency to accomplish the broad purposes for which it was established.”13Functions for each agency are usually defined in a law or directive thatestablishes it. Functions can be broken down into activities which are “classes12Sco “Archives and Administrative Change”, (Part 5), p. 14.13T.R Schellenberg, Modern Archives: Principles and Techniques, (Chicago: University of ChicagoPress, 1956, reprint 1975), p. 53.5of actions that are taken in accomplishing a single function.”4 There are twomain types of activities: substantive, the technical and professional work, andfacilitative, the internal management of agencies. An activity can then be furtherdivided into transactions. A transaction may be defined as: “an act or severalinterconnected acts in which more than one person is involved and by which therelations of those persons are altered”.’5 According to Schellenberg there aretwo types of transactions. Policy transactions determine the courses of actionfollowed in all transactions of a single class. Operational transactions apply tospecific individual transactions taken in line with policy decisions.’6This hierarchy offers a comprehensive manner of categorizing the typesof actions that can occur in organizations and their constituent agencies. Anorganization may be defined as “a social system that has an unequivocalcollective identity, and exact roster of members, a program of activity, andprocedures for replacing members.”7 In this study the government of Canada isan organization. An agency is “an administrative body having the delegatedauthority to act competently as an agent of a higher body.”18 Thus, the federalDepartment of Agriculture, which has received its authority to act in a definedsphere through legislation, is an agency of the larger organization, thegovernment of Canada.14Ibid.‘5Schellenberg does not actually define the term “transaction.” This definition is taken from theUniversity of British Columbia, School of Library, Archival and Information Studies, “Select List ofArchival Terminology”, n.d., p. 19. See also Society of American Archivists, A Glossaryfor Archivists,Manuscript Curators, and Records Managers, (Chicago, 1992), s.v. agency, competence, fonds, function,transaction.‘6Schellenberg, Modern Archives, p. 54.17”Select List of Archival Terminology”, p. 13.18Ibid., p. 2.6While Schellenberg offers a system for classifying administrative activity,his view of the hierarchy of function is as it is actually carried out inadministration. By function he in fact means the authority of a body toadminister a defined realm of activity. For this thesis a theoretical definition offunction is adopted. Function is therefore defined as “all of the activities aimedto accomplish one purpose, considered abstractly.”9 In the actualadministration of affairs the activities of a single function may be assigned tovarious bodies, that is, to more than one agency or to various administrativeunits of a single agency. The assignment of responsibility is referred to ascompetence and may be defined as “the sphere of functional responsibilityentrusted to an office or officer.”2° It is the real expression of the functionalresponsibility of government agencies.Thus, archivists have widely recognized the value of using function as aconcept of access. Most recently, the Art and Architecture Thesaurus, a projectheaded by Toni Peterson and funded by the Getty Institute, has included afunctions vocabulary and hierarchy: “the Functions hierarchy containsdescriptors for activities which are considered in order to accomplish specificpurposes, as well as methodologies associated with specific areas ofendeavour.”2’ The functions are divided into two sections. The first section,functions by general context, “consists of activities common to a wide range ofinstitutions, professions and occupations.”22 The second section, functions byspecific context, “includes activities usually found in a particular context, i.e.p. 8201b1d., p. 5.21Art andArchitecture Thesaurus, Vol. 1, Toni Peterson, Director, (New York: Oxford University Presson behalf of The Getty Art History Information Program, 1990), p. 324.7educational functions (e.g. teaching).”23 With such a rapid pace ofadministrative change, there is the realization by archivists that agency namecannot provide as reliable access as can function. The functional activity whichgenerates the records can be characterized or represented in an informationsystem to provide access to records independently of structure.Competence, then, can be seen to be the concrete apportionment ofresponsibility to carry out activities for part of some abstract function. Eachadministrative body of government acts “to carry out activities functional to thebroad purposes of the organization and to the specific responsibilities assignedto the body.”24 Governments are given authority to carry out several functions asconceived abstractly in the constitution. Constitutions do not say which bodyshall carry out which activities in pursuit of these functions. That is done by thelegislature, whose laws establish the competence of agencies to act in a welldefined sphere of one or more than one of the constitutionally designatedfunctions.In order to fully come to an understanding of how competence isdelegated however, it is necessary to use an example. The study of onefunction of government, examining its specific developments is therefore thefocus of this thesis. Agriculture was chosen since it is a major function of thefederal government. The choice of agriculture effectively demonstrates anevolution of activities of a function. For the purposes of this study theadministration of all agricultural affairs is considered to be a function.Through the study of statutory legislation this thesis will show how thefederal government delegates responsibility to agencies in order to administer231b1d24Terry Eastwood, ed. The Archival Fonds: From Theory to Practice, (Bureau of Canadian Archives,1992), p. 4.8affairs in one functional sphere. It will explain how structures to carry outactivities in the function of agriculture grow and change in response to legislativeenactment, but also how structures can be linked across time by carefulfunctional analysis. Having traced how the function of agriculture has beenadministered in the Government of Canada, this study will assess thesignificance of findings for the performance of archival work.9Chapter OneFunctional Responsibility and the Government of CanadaDemocratic nations are subject to the rule of law. The organization of ademocratic polity is set forth in the constitution, the law which establishes theworkings of governance, the mechanisms by which a sovereign people governthemselves and organizes the rules by which they live. Every time a new law ispassed in the legislature a new or amended activity is created for thegovernment to manage and regulate. Generally, a law stipulates the agency towhich the new activity is delegated or states the person or agency who willdelegate the activity. A new law therefore means that within the governmentstructure, room must be made to accommodate that responsibility. This thesisexamines how laws establish functional responsibility for the execution andadministration of public affairs and thereby also establish the most immediatecontext for the production of public archival documents. For the purposes of thisstudy, the administration of all agricultural affairs is considered as one function,whether or not it moves beyond a single department’s boundaries.The Canadian constitution establishes eleven sovereign legislativebodies in Canada. One is the Parliament of Canada and the others are the tenprovincial legislatures. Each is limited by their legislative competence, but allare granted legislative authority to enact statutes: “It is important to realize thata sovereign legislative body can enact statutes pursuant only to its legislative10competence.”25 Since there are two levels of government, there must beboundaries of responsibility so that, for example, the federal and the provincialagencies responsible for agriculture do not infringe on each other. The BritishNorth America Act sets out the jurisdiction, the division of powers, federally andprovincially. A review of the structure of the Canadian government will moreclearly outline how responsibility is delegated.There are three branches of government in Canada’s federalparliamentary system. The legislature makes the general rules and regulationsregarding the administration of government.26 The judiciary offers anindependent determination by a judge as to whether a person has contravenedthe law. Lastly, and most importantly for the purposes of this study, the executiveadministers the application and enforcement of the legislation to certain peoplein particular circumstances.The Parliament of Canada is given “exclusive legislative authority toenact laws in respect of the peace, order and good government of Canada,”however that may be interpreted.27 The authority to create legislation relatesonly to matters of the nation as a whole and also to matters which have not beenspecifically mentioned in either sections 91 or 92 of the British North AmericaAct. Section 91 grants legislative authority and exclusive legislative jurisdictionto the Parliament of Canada. Section 92 likewise gives authority to provinciallegislatures. So, for example, the Parliament of Canada under s.92(27) is givenexclusive legislative jurisdiction over the regulation of international and25Gerald L. Gall, The Canadian Legal System, 3rd. ed. (Toronto: Carswell Legal Publications, 1990), p.37.26David Jones, Anne de Villars, Principles ofAdministrative Law, (Toronto: Carswell Legal Publications(Western Division), 1985), p. 47.p. 96.11extraprovincial trade, while the provinces have exclusive jurisdiction over theintraprovincial trade. The authority for which the judicial component ofgovernment rests is contained within sections 96 to 101 of the 1867 British NorthAmerica Act.28 Basically the Parliament of Canada is “granted legislativecompetence to enact laws providing for the establishment of certain courts andtribunals.”29 Parliament has authority to create legislation respecting theappointment of judges to the courts as well as for their salaries, their tenure andtheir removal. As well, the same act allows the federal Parliament to appointfederal judges to county or district and superior courts established by theprovinces. Lastly, provincial courts and respective provincial judges are alsoprovided for to act within provincial jurisdiction.30The third branch of the government of Canada is the executive. Underthe Canadian constitution, executive power resides in the Crown in Great Britain.However, the Queen acts only through her representatives in Canada so that theGovernor General actually has executive power. However, this transfer of powerdoes not accurately reflect the role of the Queen and her representative theGovernor General. In reality, the Governor General only acts on the advice ofthe Prime Minister and hisTher cabinet: “In short, executive power in Canada,with some limited exceptions, lies in the hands of the Prime Minister and hiscabinet and , provincially, with the various premiers and their cabinets.”3’ Theoffice of the prime minister then is the actual leader of the nation and the chiefauthority on government policy. The cabinet is appointed by the prime minister28Tffis act is also subsequently known as the 1867 Constitution Act.29 Gall, p.104.301b1d., p. 105.311b1d., p.57.12and is the centre for initiating, approving, and executing government policy tosettle the broad direction and priorities of the government. Each cabinet ministeris delegated one or more functions to administer under a portfolio. The ministerthen becomes responsible for the agencies delegated responsibility to carry outthese functions.However, as government involvement becomes more complex, so doeslegislative procedure. Parliament cannot possibly deal with every detailapplicable to every legislative situation. There is neither the time nor theexpertise: “as modern technology increases and as social problems becomemore complex, it follows that there must be, not only a legislative response, butoften a complex legislative response.”32 Therefore, “acts of Parliament within thelast century have more and more delegated extremely wide legislative powers tothe executive.”33 This method is known as enabling legislation. Under enablinglegislation, power is delegated to an inferior body, which may be cabinet, aminister of cabinet, or an agency, to make subordinate rules in keeping with thewide powers set out in the terms of the enabling legislation. Thus, a minister ofcabinet can receive powers under a piece of enabling legislation to administer acertain functional activity. The minister can then propose whatever subordinaterules are deemed necessary to administer that activity. However, the ministermust always work within the competency set out in the enabling legislation. Heor she cannot exceed the sphere of responsibility for which he or she receivedauthority to act. It is a fixed principle that only competent persons and agenciescan act to administer affairs. Moreover, practically speaking, without such a32Jbid., p. 45.33Maliory, The Structure ofCanadian Government, p. 154.13principle, conflicts of authority and functional responsibility would regularly occurto the detriment of administration.In 1867 when Upper and Lower Canada as well as Nova Scotia and NewBrunswick were united to form Canada, the British North America Act laid out thedivision of powers for the Union and for each of the Provinces. Agriculture wasone function which the federal and each of the provinces shared:In each Province the Legislature may make Laws inrelation to Agriculture in the Province, and toImmigration in to the Province; and it is herebydeclared that the Parliament of Canada may fromTime to Time make Laws in relation to Agriculture inall or any of the Provinces and any Law of theLegislature of a Province relative to Agriculture or toImmigration shall have effect in and for the Provinceas long and as far only as it is not repugnant to anyAct of the Parliament of Canada.34Interestingly, the British North America act refers to both agriculture andimmigration in the same section, thereby indicating that the architects ofConfederation had the idea of a Canada in which immigrants would be drawn tothe new nation to practice agriculture, thus building an agricultural base to theeconomy. At Confederation the primary federal interest in agriculture was indeveloping and expanding farming into new regions of Canada.35 Formally, thefederal government has jurisdiction over agricultural issues that are of nationalinterest, such as international trade, tariffs, the regulation of the agriculturalindustry of the country as a whole. The provinces, on the other hand, areconcerned with trade issues between the provinces. Both federal and provincialgovernments may enact legislation regarding support of the agricultural34British North America Act, s. 95.35Vernon C. Fowke, Canadian Agricultural Policy: The Historical Pattern, (Toronto: University ofToronto Press, 1947), p. 156.14economy, such as through the farm loan interest acts, which have existed atboth levels of government. There is a certain amount of flexibility in thesedivisions of responsibility, and over time many of the lines of demarcation haveblurred considerably, particularly regarding trade issues.While there were a finite number of functions at Confederation, from timeto time, in response to public needs, new areas of responsibility are created tocarry out activities in existing functions or to establish new functions altogether.Traditionally, the major functions of government are carried out in separateministries or departments. At Confederation these departments were groupedinto five categories: administrative, financial, defence, education and welfare,and natural resources and development.36 Since 1867 a large range of activitieshave been added. Just how this process occurs, what its results are, are thesubjects of this investigation.Administrative Law is the realm of law which ensures that “the activities ofgovernment are authorized by Parliament and that laws are implemented andadministered in a fair and reasonable manner.”37 It is one of three areas ofpublic law dealing with the relationship between government and citizens, theother two being Constitutional Law and Criminal Law. There are two basicprinciples involved in Administrative Law. The first is that the courts have theright to interpret the legislation and the lawfulness of government action. Thesecond is called the doctrine of Parliamentary Sovereignty which “gives thelegislative branch authority to delegate powers and the vast bulk of the businessof government in fact takes place by virtue of delegated authority instead of36.W. Hodgetts, Pioneer Public Service: An Administrative History ofthe United Canadas, 1 841-1867,(Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1955), p. 35.37.G. Cowan, “Administrative Law”, The Canadian Encyclopedia, J.H. Marsh, ed. (Edmonton: HurtigPublishers, 1985), p. 14.15being contained in laws passed by either the Federal Parliament or one of theprovincial legislatures.”38 This study will also base its determination ofcompetency on legislation as the primary source of delegatory authority. It doesnot examine subordinate legislation in the form of orders and regulationsbecause the goal is to achieve a broad view of the expression of competence asrelating to agriculture and how that view is useful in archival work.Administrative orders and regulations allow all governments to cope flexibly withchanging needs, to manage complex technical details of administering affairs,and to deal with emergencies.39 However, enabling legislation sets out thebroad competence of agencies, and provides the main source for tracing thelines of functional activity. Orders and regulations cannot move into realmsbeyond the powers designated in enabling legislation. In some cases, orders orregulations are examined to illustrate their importance in understanding theextension of activity, but no exhaustive analysis of them has been made.Once the decision to refer solely to statutes was made, an in-depthexamination of the statutes began, beginning with the year of Confederation,1867. All statutes pertaining to the function of agriculture were examined forevery year since 1867 until 1989. Note was made of all new acts pertaining toagriculture, the activity or range of activities created as a result of the act, and towhich agency of government the activity was delegated. As well, where stated,the powers of the body created to administer the activity were examined.All amendments to acts already in existence were also examined. Oftenamendments greatly expand or limit the scope of activities, thereby virtuallyrewriting the original act. As well, amendments often transfer functionalresponsibility from one agency to another. Other secondary sources such as38Jones and de Villars, Principles ofAdministrative Law, p. 4.391b1d., p.58.16annual reports and government reports, were used to explain the reasonsbehind the creation of the legislation. The annual reports were particularlyuseful in determining the structural changes in the department of agriculture.Thus, Canada, as a democratic nation must adhere to the laws passed inthe sovereign legislature. Once functional responsibility for an activity is laid outin statute, an agency of the government must administer the act. This thesis isan examination of how laws establish functional responsibility to agencies ofgovernment using the example of the administration of agriculture. The followingchapters will lay out the evolution of agriculture, the growth of activities, theincrease in infrastructure as expressed in the Statutes of Canada.17Chapter TwoThe Formative Years: 1867-1918Agriculture and European settlement in Canada have always been closelylinked in Canadian history. Agriculture originated in Canada in the early 17thcentury in settlements such as Acadia and New France with the production of afew commodities, livestock and grain being the most important. However, in theunfamiliar climate and using the most primitive of tools, settlers in the newcolonies were still largely dependent on imported goods from their nativenations. Beginning in the mid 18th century, improvements in agriculturaltechnique and implements allowed for a greater diversification of food productsand therefore a better balanced economy and increased self-sufficiency. Therewas little assistance from local governments since their infrastructure was notmature enough and their main purpose as yet was not to dispense fiscal ortechnical advice. It was not until the 19th century that direct governmentinvolvement in agricultural commerce began.4°In an effort to promote and encourage agricultural practices, with the hopeof attracting immigrants, the colony of Upper Canada formed a Board ofAgriculture in 1850, the purpose of which was to dispense aid and advice tothose in need. When the statutes of Upper and Lower Canada wereconsolidated in 1852, a single Bureau of Agriculture was formed. Within the40J.F. Booth, ed. Economic Organization ofCanadian Agriculture. (Ottawa: The Canadian Council,International Conference of Agricultural Economists, 1934)., p. ix.18Bureau, two sets of three different agricultural boards were created to apply toeach of Upper and Lower Canada. The first board was formed to supervise localagricultural societies which also began about this time. The agriculturalsocieties received government grants aimed at improving farming techniquesand practices. The purpose of the second board was to organize countyexhibits, where farmers displayed the best of the annual harvest to theirneighbours. The last board was designed to bring together county townshipagricultural societies with farmer membership.4’ The administration of theseboards was the extent of government involvement in the economy of agriculturebefore Confederation.In 1867, legislation establishing a federal department of agriculturewas passed. The act was short but direct. It stipulated the nine spheres ofresponsibility in which the Department had the competency to act. Agriculturewas but one of them. The other eight areas of responsibility were: immigrationand emigration, public health and quarantine, the marine and emigrant hospitalat Quebec, arts and manufactures, the census, statistics and the registration ofstatistics, patents of invention, copyright, and industrial designs and trademarks.42 These responsibilities excluded the supervision of the agriculturalboards and societies that were so much a part of the pre-Confederationgovernment activities affecting agriculture.At first glance, it is difficult to see the relationship between agriculture andthe rest of the functions of the Department:As the [administrative] machinery was expanded acurious assortment of seemingly unrelated matterswas attached to it. When the government is41Fowke, Canadian Agricultural Policy, p. 11442Canada, Statutes ofCanada, 1867, c. 53.19uncertain about the appropriateness of undertakingparticular functions it is common to find them groupeduncomfortably and somewhat illogically.43A closer look reveals a certain logic to these groupings. As Hodgetts notes,there were relationships between the various functions. The British NorthAmerica Act designated responsibility for agriculture and immigration to both theprovincial and federal governments in one single paragraph. Public Health andquarantine were connected with immigration. Agricultural statistics wereperhaps the most important class at that time, so the census was primarilydevoted to agriculture. Patents and copyrights were placed under thedepartment of agriculture since much of this activity was related to agriculturaltools. Moreover, administering immigration required access to statistics derivedfrom the census.44Although administering agricultural affairs was the prime function of theDepartment, it actually moved slowly in this realm. Six years afterConfederation, the minister observed that it was “better to delay a little than torush into a rash organization, the lamentable results of which would be sure toexert an evil influence over many years.”45 In fact, the Department seems tohave concentrated primarily on immigration, patents and statistics. Theassumption seems to have been that an influx of immigration had to occur beforethe function of agriculture could be properly administered. The Department’smain concern in the years after Confederation was to promote immigration of anagriculturally-based class of people. In these years, responsibility foragricultural affairs as such was left in the hands of the provinces.43Hodgetts Pioneer Public Service, p. 226.Ibid., p. 228.45Canada, Report ofthe Minister ofAgriculturefor Canada, 1873, p.iii.20The first indication that the Department was indeed showing some interestin agriculture occurred in 1869 when the annual report mentioned that theinfectious diseases of animals was under review and study with the intention ofproducing legislation.46 At this time Canada was exporting a large number ofcattle to Britain for consumption. The spread of cattle diseases threatenedfarmers with financial disaster. The immediate concern over animal diseasecame from the cattle plague in the United States, referred to as “Texian Fever.”In fact, an Order in Council in 1868 prohibited the importation of horned cattlefrom the United States into the provinces of Ontario and Quebec.47 There was aneed for federal regulation of cattle since the disease spread without regard forpolitical boundaries. Finally, in 1885, the Animal and Contagious Diseases Actwas passed, administered by the Minister of Agriculture. Every owner of cattleor other animal who detected a contagious disease amongst the livestock wasrequired to give notice immediately to the Minister of Agriculture. If not reported,the owner of the animals could lose the right to claim compensation for theslaughter of the infected animals, also provided for in the act. The Minister wasgiven the power of withholding compensation if the owner was found guilty of anoffense against this act as well as to order a post mortem for analysis or to savecertain infected animals from slaughter for experimental treatment. Mostimportantly, the Minister had the power to declare if a place did or did notcontain contagious animals. This declaration would be the beginning of anextensive investigation of the infected animals under the Contagious DiseasesAct. Powers were also given to inspectors to enter and examine suspectedlocalities as well as vessels without notice.46CIa, Report ofthe Minister ofAgriculture, 1869, p. 2.47.Thid., p. 3.21This first piece of agriculturally related delegated legislation wascharacteristic of legislation to come as the government gradually grew into therole of regulator of the agricultural economy of Canada. Only by means ofpassing legislation to administer some aspect of agricultural affairs did thedepartment grow. Legislation sets out the rights and obligations of personsengaged in agriculture as well as of the government. Eventually, the Animal andContagious Diseases Act leads to some amount of administration, to the hiringof staff to administer the affairs regarding animal disease. At first persons wereappointed to such administrative roles such as inspection without anyadministrative offices set up for the activity. However, it is important to note thatthe growth of the department is a direct result of the need to administer the rightsand obligations set out in law by the Canadian people through the sovereignlegislature.Other legislation was created during these early years which related tothe general function of agriculture but which was administratively placed outsideof the Department of Agriculture. In 1873 the Inspection and Sale Act waspassed by Parliament. This act, administered at first by the Department of Tradeand Commerce, empowered the government to define inspection divisions andappoint inspectors for each product or group of products listed. For the firsttime, grades were established for various commodities. This act gatheredtogether pre-Confederation inspection legislation of the various provinces andmodified it to suit the new constitutional situation.48 The act was a large one,divided into ten parts. The first part was a general section explaining theprinciples of the act, and that it did not apply to grain. Parts two to ten dealtexclusively and separately with grain, flour and meal, beef and pork, leather and48Fowke, Canadian Agricultural Policy, p. 241.22raw hides, pot ashes and pearl ashes, fish and fish oils, dairy products, fruit andfruit marks, and staple commodities. A board of examiners was appointed bylaw:The board of trade or chamber of commerce incertain cities in the country shall annually appoint aboard of examiners for each class of articles to beinspected in such locality to examine and test theability and fitness of applicants for the office ofinspector or deputy inspector of such articles.49Although the Inspection and Sale Act dealt with agricultural products afterharvesting, it was part of the function of agriculture since it regulated a largesector of the agricultural economy. The act was not initially made the directresponsibility of the Department of Agriculture because it was primarilyconcerned with the quality of the products for distribution and export. Thisparticular distribution of authority over agriculturally related matters to adepartment other than agriculture is one early indication of the difficulty federalofficials experienced to follow strictly functional lines in organizingadministration. This particular class of activities to grade agricultural productswould eventually migrate to the department of agriculture. It is this kind ofsituation which Australian archivist Peter Scott and his colleagues say createdmulti-provenance series, those series made up of documents created by morethan one agency over time.Within the Department of Agriculture, the agricultural sector remained alow priority. The 1872 Annual Report of the Minister fully admitted that theDepartment had not, except incidentally, dealt with it or even made it one of thebranches of its administration, although the report did hint that the planning for49Canada, Revised Statutes ofCanada, 1906, c.85.23the organization of such a branch was underway. The report also expressed theview that widespread farming could greatly increase the wealth of the nation, butthat:Agriculture may be said to be in a transition state,between the system which is applicable to new andunused lands, and that higher culture which isnecessary to be applied to prevent lands that havelong been farmed from being altogether exhausted, orat least to make their cultivation profitable.5°The Department was reluctant to get more involved in agricultural affairs untilsuch time as both extremes, the cultivation of completely untilled soil on the onehand and the harvesting from land long in use on the other hand, could besuccessfully balanced so as to develop more comprehensive policies in a morefocused administration. Thus, this function had no great administrative structureinitially since the provincial sphere of authority was more active and since thedepartment was not yet ready to intervene nationally to regulate the industryexcept in the area of animal diseases which clearly called for federal action.For its first ten years the department concentrated on regulating import,export, and quarantine of cattle, but it also concerned itself with the effects ofpests on crops which could also be devastating to agricultural economic activity.In 1877, the Minister reported that the department was concerned about thespread of the potato beetle and the possible damage it could do to crops inCanada. However, while there was a recognition of the problem, thegovernment did not take action. As for animals, the potential hazard that couldbe caused by an outbreak of sheep scab was also a cause for concern. AnOrder in Council of 1876 empowered officers (under the Contagious DiseasesAct) to visit all vessels and to superintend the landing of animals, destroying or50Canada, Report ofthe Minister ofAgriculture, 1872, p.3.24disinfecting all goods of a danger to cattle in Canada since another outbreak ofcattle infection was underway in the United States.5’ Thus, although there wasan awareness of the problems of pestilence on crops, the prime concern was forthe health of cattle.Thus, the biggest complaint directed towards the Department in the firstdecade after Confederation was that although it was responsible for all aspectsof agriculture in Canada, very little time was actually spent on this particularfunction. In 1884 a committee was formed, headed by George A. Gigault, todetermine the state of agriculture in the Dominion. The Secretary of theDepartment of Agriculture informed the committee at that time that theDepartment had “performed no agricultural function other than that of cattlequarantine.”52 The committee gathered evidence that suggested that anExperimental Farm Station be established.53 The reason for establishing suchan institution came from the realization that the West was not the focus ofagricultural immigration as the architects of Confederation had hoped. Inaddition, the soil, weather, and general environment of all areas of Canadadiffered from the conditions in Europe. Study was needed to boost the image ofthe Canadian Prairies as well as to teach new farmers and immigrants how toadapt methods brought from overseas to the new land.54 The early activities ofthe Experimental Farms would therefore largely become a matter of testingvarieties of agricultural methods and building up a body of agriculturalknowledge applicable to the local conditions.Canada, Report ofthe Mnister ofAgriculture, 1877, p.vii.52Fowke, Canadian Agricultural Policy, p. 189.53Canada, “The Encouragement of our Agricultural Industries”, Journals ofthe House ofCommons oftheDominion ofCanada, Appendix 6, 1884, p. 7.54Fowke, Canadian Agricultural Policy, p. 220.25Accordingly, in 1886 the Experimental Farm Stations Act was passed inParliament. The legislation defined the parameters of experimental farms asboth an illustrative model for other surrounding farms to emulate, and aneducational tool. Land for farm stations was purchased in Ottawa, Ontario, NovaScotia, New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island Manitoba, the NorthwestTerritories and British Columbia and were under the control of the Minister ofAgriculture. Land purchased in Ottawa, Ontario served as the central farmstation.55 There were a number of activities that the Minister was given thecompetency to administer, which changed very little over the long existence ofthe act:a. research and experiments in stock breeding;b. examining economic questions regarding butter and cheese;c. testing the merits, and adaptability of cereals;d. analyzing fertilizers to test their value with respect to differentcrops;e. examining foods for domestic animals;f. experimenting in tree planting for timber and shelter;g. examining diseases of plants, trees, ravages of insects;h. examining diseases of domestic animals;i. ascertaining the vitality and purity of agricultural seeds; andj. conducting any other research bearing upon the agriculturalindustry of Canada.56These activities covered a wide range of agricultural study, well needed for55Canada, Statutes ofCanada, 1886, c.23(4).56Jbid., s.11.26learning about and providing education in the Canadian agricultural setting. In1886 an amendment to its act gave the department responsibility to administerexperimental farms.57 This act is an important area of federal jurisdiction notgenerally duplicated by the provinces since research and development movesforward the whole agricultural system.Up to this point no mention of crop conditions or concerns, other than pestcontrol problems were made. In 1888, however, crops were mentioned in theannual report of the Minister for the first time. Although the report merelycontained a summary of conditions of the past year, what crops were successfulor unsuccessful, and in what regions of the country, this description wasimportant in that the department recognized that crops were part of the realm forwhich they had responsibility. This beginning is attributed to the ExperimentalFarms Act which began the process of examination and supervision of fieldcrops. Indeed, there was in this year a detailed subsection accounting forexperimental farms, informing the public that the Department was testing cerealsto determine when they ripen, their fertility and their quality. There was alsodetailed information on cattle quarantine, importation and exportation of cattle,as well as other information on animal and vegetable diseases such as hogcholera.In this formative period, other legislation related to agriculture but not partof the department’s mandate was passed. The Fertilizers Act (1890),administered by the Minister of Inland Revenue, was a measure taken toregulate the fertilizer industry to ensure a quality product. Every manufacturer orimporter of fertilizers was required to send to the Minister a sample ofmarketable fertilizer. Inspectors examined the product for certain elements and57Canada, Revised Statutes ofCanada, 1886 c.24(4).27then attached tags to the samples of fertilizer that contained the correctpercentage of ingredients necessary for sale. The fertilizer could not be soldunless it contained a certain percentage of ingredients.58 This act was part ofthe agricultural function because it set the standards for the production offertilizer that was used for agricultural production. This is another example of anarea related to agriculture but not wholly within its sphere. The production andimport of goods is not solely or structurally agricultural matters. However, thedepartment of agriculture has a general interest in this activity.In 1889, the department unofficially extended its responsibilities to thedairy industry by providing information to farmers on the best and mosteconomical methods of manufacturing cheese and butter as well as dispensingadvice on feeding cattle for milk production. In 1890, a Dairy Commissioner anda Dominion Dairy Branch were established under the Department of Agriculture.They operated dairy stations, which performed much the same activities as theexperimental farms: “to disseminate practical information among the farmers ofCanada.”59 This development points out that departments often respond to theneeds of citizens under existing powers without passing legislation. In 1893, bycontrast, the Dairy Products Act was passed and placed in the responsibility ofthe department of agriculture to “prevent the manufacture and sale of filled orimitation cheese, and to provide for the branding [i.e. grading] of dairyproducts.”6°These two examples show how neither legislation nor structure canaccount alone for the expansion of activities. In some cases, new activities canbe traced to legislation; in others only the history of how the structure evolved58Canada, Statutes ofCanada, 1890, c. 24.59Canada, Report ofthe Minister ofAgriculture, 1892, p. xii.60th, Statutes ofCanada, 1893, c.37.28and what each agency actually did will tell the story, and lead persons to therecords of specified functional activities.Throughout the last decade of the nineteenth century, interest grew inmarketing dairy products such as butter and cheese for export to Britain. Thedrawback to exporting such items was their perishability. The quality of suchproducts after a long voyage overseas was much diminished. Accordingly, in1896, under the Cold Storage Act, the department received the authority to offerone hundred dollars as a subsidy to any creamery that would establish an air-circulating cold storage room according to government specifications. Under thesame act the government also subsidized refrigeration equipment. This ensuredlonger storage time and a longer life for products such as cheese and butter forexport and consumption overseas.6’For two reasons, a number of other products were investigated in additionto butter and cheese. The first was the establishment of experimental farmswhich were beginning to test the endurability of certain types of seeds.Canadian hops, flax, and spagnum were but a few of the grains considered,while honey was one of the animal products under review. This was evidence ofincreased diversification on the part of the department as well as an increasedconcentration on their primary function of agriculture. Diversification likely alsocame about because the nineties was a time of drought that previewed thedrought years of the 1930’s: “the past season was remarkable for drought insome of the more important agricultural districts.”62 The Department alsoendeavoured to promote products such as birch oil, fish guano, beet root sugarand cotton seed oil, which were apparently not so affected by drought as grains61Fowke, Canadian Agricultural Policy, p. 216.62Canada, Report ofthe Minister ofAgriculture, 1896, p. v.29were. While these activities received much attention, they were not sanctionedby legislative initiatives, but were rather evidence of an increasinglysophisticated department able to extend its activities under general terms of itsresponsibility for the function of agriculture. Only as specific activities maturedcould the need for legislation and its terms become clear. Usually, it was whenrights and obligations had to be set down that legislation occurred.Livestock continued to be a major part of the department’s activities. In1891, the Livestock Shipping Act was proclaimed and was administered not atfirst by the Minister of Agriculture, but by the Minister of Marine and Fisherieswhich dealt with all matters relating to ocean vessels and inspection. The actonce again reflected the concern of the government over the spread of animaldisease. Inspectors were designated to issue certificates to any vessel carryinglivestock or Customs officers could not give clearance. The certificate had toinclude information on the number of livestock the ship could carry, the numberthe ship was actually carrying, whether the shelters were strong enough toensure the safety of the livestock and if the ship met all the prescribed rules andregulations.63The Department’s predominant interest in the cattle trade continued until1897, when, for the first time, livestock was not mentioned in great detail in theannual report of the Minister. There were only brief remarks on the importationand exportation of livestock including horses, mules, cattle, sheep and swine.By 1899 the importance of the cattle trade was definitely on the decline.Although statistics were still kept on importation and exportation, there was nolonger any detail on the types of cattle diseases and the traditional as well as thenew methods used for counteracting such diseases. Crops, experimental farms63ra, Statutes ofCanada, 1891, c.36(6).30stations, and dairying were the new areas of concentration of the Department atthe beginning of the twentieth century.However, one last act of parliament was passed in this early periodregarding livestock in Canada. While the Livestock Shipping Act provided foranimals coming into Canada, the Livestock Pedigree Act of 1901 was constitutedfor the purpose of regulating bloodlines of livestock within Canada: “Any five ormore persons who desire to associate themselves together for the purpose ofkeeping a record of purebred livestock of any distinct breed or several records ofeach of a distinct breed of the same class of animals, may make application tothe Minister of Agriculture for incorporation.”64 Such associations could hold anypersonal property necessary to carry out the objects of the association, couldmake, accept promissory notes or could use the funds of the association for anypurpose that was designed to benefit the breed of animals mentioned in theapplication. The Minister of Agriculture was given the competency to administerthe act as well as approve the application and approve the certificates ofregistration and to declare the corporate powers of the association forfeited ifbusiness was not being properly conducted.Thus, livestock is the most developed activity of the agricultural functionat this time. This is reflected in the amount of legislation that was produced toprotect and nurture the cattle industry -- the Contagious Diseases Act, and laterthe Livestock Shipping Act and the Livestock Pedigree Act. The nature of suchactivities was to protect the industry from cattle disease, to ensure the safedelivery of the product to countries receiving the cattle, and to improve thequality of the cattle by legislating the formation of associations for that purpose.This early history of legislation shows the beginning of a general trend to64Canada, Statutes ofCanada, 1901, c.2(1).31promote, regulate and inspect, all important activities which developed first withregard to livestock but later spread to other agricultural sectors.In 1902 the Department appears to have made its first broad statement ofmandate in the agricultural arena:The general work [of the Commissioner of Agricultureand Dairying] is to render assistance towards theimprovement of all agricultural products and themeans of their production, transportation andmarketing, with particular regard to those which maybe grouped under name of food products... It has alsoappeared desirable that [the farmer] should receiveencouragement, direction and, where necessary, theco-operation of governments at the beginnings of hisorganized cooperation with other farmers, withmerchants, with railway and steamship companies, forthe improvement of products, the extension of marketsand the improvement of transportation. TheDepartment of Agriculture is trying to provide theseforms of help.65This statement was important not only for its content but particularly for itsappearance which meant that the Department was beginning to consider its rolein Canadian agriculture. That the Department could articulate its purposessignified that it was starting to order and organize itself into a recognizablemodern agency of government. Thus, thirty-five years after Confederation. thedepartment of agriculture was finally recognizing its primary responsibility.The first two decades of the twentieth century, particularly just before thebeginning of the first world war, was a time when a number of significant actswere written relating to agriculture. The dramatic opening of the west toimmigrant farmers stimulated the need for an increasingly complex variety oflegislation. They were primarily to regulate and control various aspects of theagricultural industry in Canada, such as protecting the public against fraud and65Report ofthe Minister ofAgriculture, 1902, p. xiii32dishonest practices among manufacturers. As the body of legislation for whichthe department of agriculture had competency grew, so did its sophistication andinfrastructure. Definite subordinate divisions of administration began to grow,were reorganized and streamlined in the succeeding years of the history of thedepartment. Although the structure of the department is alone certainly anunreliable method of perceiving the nature of the department’s activities, it doesreflect the increasing complication of administering such a growing agency ofgovernment. Again, these complications are evident in the new spate oflegislation passed in the expansionary years before world war one.In 1904-5, the Seed Control Act came into force as the responsibility ofthe Minister of Agriculture. Anyone charged with enforcement of this act couldenter any premises and inspect any seeds that were suspected of violating theact. Seeds could not be sold or offered unless they were free from the seeds ofweeds. Seed packages which contained weed seeds were detrimental to thecrops of the farmer. In addition, each package of seeds had to contain a labelwith the name and address of the seller as well as the names of the seeds. Thepurpose of this act was to prevent manufacturers from including into seedpackages cheap but useless seeds that were not what they proclaimed to be onthe package.In 1907 the Meat and Canned Foods Act also came into effect. A CannedGoods Act had existed previous to this one, but had not named whoadministered it. This act blanketed all products which could be canned, frommeat to fruit and vegetables. Fish and shellfish, fruit, vegetables, were included,but the majority of the act dealt with meat. All products must be fit for humanconsumption before being canned, and fish and shellfish must be labeled, and adescription of the contents of the canned goods must be included on thepackaged product. This act, however, was primarily concerned with the safety of33meat for consumption. All slaughtering and carcasses had to be inspected if theproduct was intended for export. The legislation expressed an interest incontinuing to keep a strong export market. Tainted products would spread fearon the part of the consumers in a foreign market and the demand for the productwould decrease, thereby decreasing the production in the host country. Healthycanned foods meant a confident foreign consumer market for such goods.66In 1910 the Destructive Insect and Pest Act was proclaimed, whichrepealed the San Jose Pest Act (1901), which was a short act that referred toonly one type of pest, and extended the coverage to all pests which were athreat to agricultural vegetation in Canada. The goal of the act was to “preventthe introduction or admission into Canada, or the spreading therein, or theshipment beyond her borders, of any insect, pest, or disease destructive tovegetation.”67 Broad provisions were made for inspection and quarantinemeasures as necessary for the control and eradication of plant pest diseases.Another significant act which first came into effect in 1910 was the DairyIndustry Act which dealt with the manufacture and sale of dairy products andbutter substitutes, and the grading of dairy products. This act gave broadprovisions for the creation of regulations relating to classification, marking andbranding of dairy products such as butter or cheese, the registration of cheesefactories, the confiscation of illegal dairy products, and other such details. Therewas a particular concern for butter substitutes:No person shall manufacture, import into Canada, oroffer, sell or have in his possession for sale, any oleomargarine, butterine, or other substitute for butter,66C,Statutes ofCanada, 1907, c.27.67C,Statutes ofCanada, 1910, c.3 1(3).34manufactured wholly or in part from any fat other thanthat of milk or cream.68The act also authorized the appointment of inspectors for enforcement. Theyhad the power to enter gall places where dairy products are manufactured orstored or dealt in.. .and shall have the authority to take samples of such dairyproducts or materials.”69 Ultimately, the Dairy Industry Act gave the Departmentof Agriculture the competence to regulate the dairy industry quite extensively.In 1912 and 1913, two acts were passed which were designed to offerassistance to farmers. In 1912 the Agricultural Aid Act was incorporated. Thepurpose of the act was to legislate giving an annual grant to the provinces toencourage agriculture. The Minister could enter into agreement with anyprovince setting forth the terms and conditions upon which subsidies weregranted. This act was as significant as the Agricultural Instruction Act of 1913 inwhich the government stated in the preamble that it was “desirable thatencouragement be given to agriculture in all the provinces of Canada, andwhereas great and permanent benefit will result through education, instructionand demonstration carried along lines well devised and of a continuousnature.”7° The act stipulated that the government was giving ten million dollarsin ten years to aid and advance the farming industry by instruction. This act wasonly in effect so long as there was money to be distributed. Since the moneywas only distributed for ten years, the act was null and void by 1924.The year 1914 marked the outbreak of World War I in Europe. The warappears to have had surprisingly little effect was shown within the Department ofAgriculture. At the request of British authorities, the Department purchased and68Cth, Statutes ofCanada, 1910, c.59(3)(a-j).691b1d., ((15)(1)(2)).70Canada, Statutes ofCanada, 1913, c.5.35stored certain food supplies to be shipped, if necessary, to Britain. In addition,the Department also assisted in the campaign begun by the British for increasedproduction of agricultural items.7’ The structure within the Department changedremarkably little, with the exception of the loss of employees who went to war.By 1918, all activities that were not related to agriculture (such as copyrights andthe Public Archives) had been transferred to more appropriate departments.This marked a significant change in direction for the Department. Where beforethe assortment of functions under the Department were all very different buttenuously related, a decision had obviously been made regarding therationalization of the department to its competence for agricultural matters alone.We can see that almost right from the beginning of Confederation thatresponsibility for agricultural affairs focused on a few primary activities. The firstwas the economics of agriculture. The government was obviously interested inprojecting an image of wealth and stability in Canada, as we can see from suchacts as the Agricultural Aid Act and the Cold Storage Act. Even theExperimental Farms were initiated for commercial reasons, since they weredesigned to educate farmers to be more productive. There was also a concernto regulate the quality of products of agriculture. The Meat and Canned GoodsAct and the Inspection and Sale Act, addressed this concern. Finally, there wasa need to dispense advice to farmers, both new and established. TheExperimental Farms Act, the Agricultural Instruction Act as well as the generalactivity of all sections of the Department of Agriculture were charged withproviding consultation, advice and support for farmers in the new land. Therewere three primary activities conducted by the Department of Agriculture in theyears up to and including the end of the first world war. Economic assistance to71Canada, Department of Agriculture, Canadian Agriculture: The First 100 Years, (Ottawa: InformationDivision, 1967), P. 18.36farmers, regulation of agricultural productions, and education of farmersreceived about equal attention in these years.By 1918 six branches had grow up to carry out activities in these threeprimary operational areas: the Dairy and Cold Storage Branch, the SeedCommissioner’s Branch, the Livestock Branch, Dominion Experimental Farmsand Stations, Health of Animals Branch, Fruit Branch and the EntomologicalBranch. By the same time, the department had shed itself of the functionalresponsibilities only indirectly related to agriculture and established clear linesfor its competence to promote and regulate agricultural affairs. In almost allcases, the various activities of the Department follow directly form passage oflegislation, which often also lays out the competence of the body undertakingadministration of affairs under the act. Only in a few cases, are activitiespursued without direct legislative authority in some act, and this is usually soonrectified. Equally, few activities related to agriculture are given to otherdepartments, the one notable exception being the regulation of agriculturalproducts after harvesting expressed in the Inspection and Sale Act, which waseventually transferred to the Department of Agriculture.37Chapter ThreeAgriculture in Transition: 1919-1945The years between the two wars saw great change in Canada as a nation.From the depression of the early 1920’s to the optimism of the late 1920’s to theGreat Depression of the 1930’s, to the new world that emerged during and afterWorld War II, the pattern of Canadian lives changed dramatically. Newtechnology such as telephones and automobiles became increasingly commonfor the average person. Women began to become more active in the politicalprocess. The Depression marked the beginning of a new era of social securityin Canada that continues today. Following the war the government’sinvolvement in different aspects of society continued to increase. The changesin agriculture were no less dramatic. New technology helped to make thefarming process more efficient. Many people came back to their farms afterWorld War I with the intent of settling down peacefully to become farmers onceagain. In the 1920’s, the government continued to pass legislation thatregulated and stabilized the agricultural industry. With the economic instabilityof the late 1920’s and I 930’s, the character of agricultural legislation changed,since agriculture was the first and possibly the hardest hit industry of the 1930’s.New legislation delegated authority to the minister and the department forfinancial support, for negotiating loans, and for rebuilding farms that had failed.38During World War II agencies were not created by the traditional method oflegislation for each agency, but rather under the War Measures Act, a muchdifferent way of delegating responsibility. These years were a transition periodfor the department as it became more involved in economic transactions as wellas regulating, educating and promoting agricultural enterprise and disseminatedagricultural knowledge. The first act to be passed in the legislature after theend of the war was the Feeding Stuffs Act of 1920. The purpose of the act wasto “regulate the sale and inspection of commercial feeding stuffs, bran, shorts,middlings and chop feeds.”72 The act gave the minister the responsibility toregister feeding stuffs and ensure that all packages have the proper information.As well, the minister was able to appoint an advisory board to recommend whatregulations should be established under the act. This clause increasinglyappeared as the amount of legislation escalated, and as the sphere of activitiesfor which the minister was responsible became ever wider and more varied.In 1920 the provincial and federal ministers of agriculture met to discusshow greater coordination between the jurisdictions could be achieved. Althoughthere was a general division of powers, in that the federal government wasdeemed responsible for agricultural activities national in character and theprovinces were limited to province-wide activities, the activities of the twojurisdictions inevitably overlapped. They agreed that the grading of dairyproducts for export was the responsibility of the federal government, whilegrading for home consumption was the responsibility of the provinces.73 Thisresolution fell within the general parameters of federal versus provincialjurisdiction.72Cth, Statues ofCanada, 1920, c.47.73Canada, Department of Agriculture, Canadian Agriculture: The First Hundred Years, p. 21.39In 1922, the Root Vegetables Act was proclaimed. This act was verysimilar to the Feeding Stuffs Act in that its main activity was to regulate theproduct: “to regulate the sale and inspection of root vegetables.”74 The actdefined how packages were marked and defined potato and onion grades. Theact authorized the creation of regulations referring to the form and dimensions ofthe packages. A similar act was created for grading, marking and packing fruit,with specific parameters for regulations, such as the quality, form and dimensionof containers, the types of fruit subject to the regulations and the imposition offees for inspection and certification.75 These acts were very typical of thedirection taken during this period. Politically, a need is recognized andlegislation is passed to address it, after which the activity of the departmentarises.Also in 1922, the Fertilizers Act was rewritten, much expanded and placedunder the administration of the minister of agriculture. That act stated that “noperson shall manufacture or import any fertilizer to be sold, offered, or held forsale in Canada unless each brand is registered with the minister and aregistration number is assigned to it.”76 Once again the minister was given theauthority to delegate responsibility further by appointing an advisory board torecommend appropriate regulations. In this act the activities which are to beregulated are specifically stated, such as the procedures, implements, samples,the size of tags, methods of analysis. This act is an example of the howcompetency is transferred from one agency to another. Perhaps, as thedepartment of inland revenue saw that the act needed revision, it saw at theCanada, Statutes ofCanada, 1922, c.43.75Canada, Statutes ofCanada, 1923, c. 15.76rth Statutes ofCanada, 1922, c.5, s.4(1).40same time the opportunity to transfer the responsibility elsewhere. The directionof the department of agriculture, particularly during this period, was in theactivities of regulation and inspection. Thus, through amending the act,competency for inspecting and regulating fertilizers was officially transferred tothe department of agriculture.Other acts began to show more sophistication in their manner ofdelegating responsibility. The Animal Contagious Diseases Act gave muchwider provision in its amended version for making regulations, although theoverall duties of the minister remained the same.77 Similarly, the AgriculturalPests Control Act, passed to “regulate the sale and inspection of agriculturaleconomic poisons”, gave the minister the authority to appoint a board whichcould prepare and recommend the proper regulations established under theact.78 Such increased complexity shows the beginning of a function that can nolonger be controlled merely through legislation, but rather needs furtherspecifications of rules in regulations to carry out the department’s responsibilitieseffectively.In 1925, the Canada Grain Act was passed, administered by the ministerof trade and commerce. The purpose of this act was to regulate and inspect thequality of grain. The act established a Board of Grain Commissioners, tosupervise the inspection of grain. The board had the power to hold an inquiry ifdeemed necessary, to appoint people who have technical knowledge for advice,and to act as trustees for the receipt and distribution of money.79 Boards like thisone would become quite common in the years to come. They act more or less77Canada, Statutes ofCanada, 1927, c.6.78th, Statutes ofCanada, 1927, c. 40, S. 11.79Canada, Statutes ofCanada, 1925, c.33, s.12,13,14.41as autonomous bodies, independent of the structure of mainline executivedepartments, but subject to the authority of a designated cabinet minister. TheBoard of Grain Commissioners would later be made the responsibility of theMinister of Agriculture. In tracing how activities to administer the affairs of theBoard were carried out, such changed in authority relations are important forsuch things as policy development, but the day to day activities of the Board andthe records of those activities are not likely affected. For archivists, it is rather amatter of recording these facts of change as part of the context of recordscreation so that researchers will know which links of authority to follow, forinstance, to examine how policy developed, but the records of the Boardconstitute a discrete entity for management purposes, unaffected by changes inauthority relations.In 1927, the Canadian Farm Loan Act came into effect. It served “thepurpose of establishing in Canada a system of long term mortgage credit forfarmers.”8° This act required the cooperation of the provincial governments,since loans would not be distributed by the federal government but ratherthrough provincial boards acting as agents of the federal government. Like theCanada Grain Act, the Canadian Farm Loan act also established a board, theCanadian Farm Loan Board, with the minister of agriculture to act aschairperson. This board had the power to issue and sell bonds, to make longterm loan to farmers, to hold real estate, and to invest in any securities of thegovernment of Canada or the provinces.8’ The establishment of the FederalBoard and provincial boards to distribute loans reflects the fact that activitieswere becoming too complex for the Department alone to administer. Thus, we8Oj, Statutes ofCanada, 1927, c.43.81Ibid., c.43, s. 4(a)(b)(c).42have the spectre of a constellation of quite distinct agencies outside theDepartment partaking in administration of part of the function of agriculture. Thistrend alone makes the notion of a record group, that is, all the records relating toa function, quite unmanageable. Rather, fonds of each distinct agency are inorder, with the capability to relate the various agencies to the function and showall the relationships of authority and activity necessary for understanding andresearch purposes. For instance, in this case, records of the Canadian FarmLoan Board are intimately related to those of the provincial boards distributingloans, showing that relationships in areas of shared jurisdictions cross federal-provincial boundaries, and to activities of the Department. Some care carefulexplanation of these facts have to be built into all sides of the equation. Carefulunderstanding of legislative history is the key to revealing these relationships.In the decade after the first world war, a number of major changesoccurred regarding agriculture in Canada. Firstly, a spate of legislation waspassed, somewhere in the area of ten acts, which indicated a much increasedinvolvement on the part of the federal government in agricultural activities. Thisdecade was a real growth era in the history of the function. The primary newactivities were regulation, inspection and promotion of agricultural products.Such intervention into the industry had the intent of improving the quality ofproducts as well as their packaging so that foreign markets would continue tobuy such products. Secondly, as activities continued to increase, legislationalone was not enough to effectively delegate responsibility, therefore increaseddetail of regulations, and new agencies were created, such as the CanadianFarm Loans Board.Thirdly, in the late 1920’s a new type of legislation came out,characterized by the Canada Grain Act and the Canadian Farm Loans Act.These two acts were more economic in nature, attempting to become more43involved in financial activities. By the late 1920’s “it was apparent thatagriculture was becoming more and more a business and less simply a way oflife.”82 In 1929 an Economics Branch was formed in the Department toadminister matters relating to the Farm Loans Act, with the idea that agriculturewas indeed a business and had to be treated accordingly. Much of the work ofthis branch had been carried out in various other branches unofficially, butcoordination among them was lacking.The 1930’s wrought monumental changes to agriculture in Canada. Allindustries were effected by the Depression, but perhaps none so dramatically asfarming on the Prairies. Farms that had been established for years and hadbegun to prosper were wiped out by the drought which dried the soil so that thewind carried it away, often with the seeds intact, or soil would pile up and coveralready growing crops. With no income, farmers could not make payments ontheir land and farm equipment, or pay the necessary taxes. An estimatedquarter of a million people migrated from the prairies during 1931-1941 in searchof better land or a more stable income.83 While the nadir of the depression camein 1933, after which there was very slow but steady recovery, farming was stillaffected by drought. In addition, farms could not be rebuilt overnight. Suchactivities took time and money. Lastly, many farmers had abandoned theirhomesteads completely, in disillusion or desperation, never to return. Thus,agriculture recovered much more slowly in relation to other industries.At first, the department responded to the depressed economic conditionsmuch as it had before, by bringing in legislation that regulated aspects ofagriculture. The Maple Products Industry Act, and the Inspection and Grading ofDepartment of Agriculture, The First One Hundred Years, p.20.Arthur Lower, Western Canada: An Outline History, (Vancouver: Douglas & Mcintyre Ltd., 1983),p. 205.44Hay and Straw Act are two examples of such legislation. However, these actswere not nearly as numerous as they had been in the 1920’s. The departmentseemed to be following the lead of the primary social policy advocated by R.B.Bennett, then Prime Minister, that the federal government did not have the powerconstitutionally to assist victims of the Depression directly. Such responsibilitywas that of the provinces, but the federal government finally agreed to providethe prairie provinces with relief grants, which, following legislation, wereadministered by the Department of Agriculture.84The first was the Prairie Farm Rehabilitation Act, designed to encouragefarmers to solve their own problems through improved cultural practices,conservation of water supplies, and adjustments in land utilization.85 The actonce again delegated responsibility to a committee whose duties were to:consider and advise the Minister as to the bestmethods to be adopted to secure the rehabilitation ofthe drought and soil drifting areas in the Provinces ofManitoba, Saskatchewan and Alberta, and to developand promote within these areas systems of farmpractice, tree culture, water supply, land utilization andland settlement that will afford greater economicsecurity.86The Minister could also undertake projects, enter into agreements and paynecessary administrative costs. Such an act was a measure of reaction on thepart of the department to the situation on the prairies. The act gave theincentive and the financial backing to farmers to rebuild their farms into viableoperations once again.p. 207.85Department of Agriculture, The First One Hundred Years, p. 25.86ith, Statutes ofCanada, 1935, c.23, s. 4.45The act sanctioned the department to conduct research in different areasinto methods for rehabilitating farms. Thus, the Experimental Farms Branchbegan to examine such areas as the use of surface water resources through treeplanting. The Economics Branch reorganized to provide more fully for researchwork, and to study the economic aspects of farm practice, farm organization, andthe costs of production.87In 1935 The Canadian Wheat Board Act was passed, and responsibilityfor it was assigned to the Minister of Trade and Commerce until after World WarII, when it came under the responsibility of the Minister of Agriculture. Theobjective of the act was to control the sale of all wheat, oats, and barley.88 TheCanadian Wheat Board was created, “with the object of marketing in an orderlymanner, in interprovincial and export trade, grain grown in Canada.”89 The actgreatly helped to save the wheat pools of Saskatchewan and Manitoba duringthis period so that in the late 1930’s agriculture in the prairie provinces began aperiod of slow but steady recovery.The legislation gave the Board broad powers to: buy, store, transfer, sellor otherwise dispose of grain; enter into contracts or agreements for thepurchase of grain; acquire, hold or dispose of real and personal property; enterinto commercial banking arrangements; establish marketing agencies; and tooperate grain elevators.90 Such broad powers made the board the mostinfluential agency in the wheat industry in Canada in a new sector of agriculturethat had not concerned the government before. The regulation of the grain trade87Canada, Report ofthe Minister ofAgriculture, 1934/35, p. 77, 1936/37, p. 50.88J. Arthur Lower, Western Canada: An Outline History, p. 205.89Canada, Statutes ofCanada, 1935, c. 53, s. 4.901b1d., s.4(4)(a)(b)(c)(d)(g)(h).46was administered by the Board. This activity is clearly related to various of theactivities relating to the production of grain administered directly by theDepartment of Agriculture, but it is also related to activities to regulate otheraspects of trade by the Department of Trade and Commerce, as is reflected bythe assignment of ministerial responsibility for the Board to each of thesedepartments at various times. These changes in authority relations do not affectthe fact that the Board is a relatively autonomous body with its own act carryingout activities in a well defined sphere of responsibility, even if its functionalactivities relate both to agricultural production and national and internationaltrade. Appraisal, arrangement, and description of the records of the Boardwould have to take into account its relations with related functional activities ofthe Departments of Agriculture and Trade and Commerce.In 1939, the Prairie Farm Assistance Act gave the Minister of Agriculturepower to:award to each person who was a farmer from the I stday of May to the 1st day of November in such year, asum by way of assistance according to his cultivatedland in a township with respect to which an applicationfor assistance has been made by the rural municipalityin which that township is situated or, in case there is nosuch rural municipality, by the government of theprovince in which that township is situated.9’A Board of Review was established to determine the eligibility under the act ofthe township and of individual farmers or classes of farmers. The minister couldmake regulations, “requiring farmers or elevator operators to furnish, on aprescribed form, all information required under the regulations.”92 Suchdemanding guidelines left little room for the minister to deviate. It is noteworthy9ljij, Statutes ofCanada, 1939, c. 50, s. 3(1).92JbEd s. 5(a).47that this is the first instance of legislation which provides direct assistance tofarmers. The Board of Review existed to advise the minister of the eligibilityapplicants for assistance. Boards of this nature to advise ministers act in effectin relation to the transaction of affairs conducted by agencies directly under thecontrol of the minister as part of his portfolio. In most cases, the records of suchBoards, to whom persons are usually appointed for a term by the minister, arekept by the departmental agencies handling the transactions upon which theboard advises. Review and advisory boards rarely develop their ownadministrative staff. In such cases, records relating to the affairs of the boardwill be incorporated in the records of the department. Strictly speaking theirprovenance is the board, as for example would be the case with minutes ofdecision of the board, and this fact would have to be taken account of in alltreatment of the records, but they would not be removed and treated separatelyfrom the records systems of which they are a part.The Board of Grain Commissioners, which was created by the CanadaGrain Act in 1927 gained a new sphere of activity in 1939 with the Grain FuturesAct, designed to provide ‘for the supervision and regulation of trading in grainfutures.”93 The Board still reported to the Minister of Trade and Commerce.Grain futures are “contracts negotiated by members of the Winnipeg GrainExchange for the purchase or sale of grain to be accepted or delivered duringfuture months, in return facilities for trading in grain futures have beenprovided.”94 Essentially, the act once again was an attempt to buoy a saggingeconomy, to try to save the grain industry in the Prairie Provinces.93Canada, Statutes ofCanada, 1939, c. 31.941b1d., s. 2(1)(d).48Two other acts enacted during this year also attempted to stabilizeagricultural production. These acts treated cooperatives, one pertaining towheat and the other to a host of products. The Agricultural ProductsCooperative Marketing Act and the Wheat Cooperative Marketing Act, bothadministered by the minister of agriculture, had the same intent. Under the actthe minister had the power to pay to a cooperative association or selling agencythe amount that the combined initial payment and processing or selling costs, ifit exceeded the average wholesale price, of an agricultural product of any gradeor quality.95 Both acts were designed to assist cooperative agencies when theprice of a product fell below the total of selling costs and initial payments (suchas seed or equipment costs). Thus, reluctantly at first, and under pressure fromthe Canadian public, the government became more deeply involved in themanagement of the agricultural economy.The first half of the 1930’s had been characterized by little action on thepart of the government in terms of legislation. In the latter half, in order tobreathe some life into agriculture, the government once again began to passlegislation that regulated agriculture. For example, in 1935 the Fruit Act wasrestructured to include vegetables and honey in the Fruit, Vegetables and HoneyAct. As well, amendments to the Seeds Act and the Feeding Stuffs Act werepassed in I 93796 Finally, the Cheese and Cheese Factory Improvement Act of1939 saw the government become involved in subsidizing cheese factories.Under this legislation the government gave up to fifty percent of the cost of newmaterial, equipment and labour to reconstruct and equip cheese factories if thecheese ripening room was efficiently insulated and the factory replaced two or95Canada, Statutes ofCanada, 1939, c. 28, s. 3(1).96C,Statutes ofCanada, 1937, c. 30, s. 15.49more existing factories.97 These acts indicates government intervention tostimulate greater economic efficiency and activity.Increasing sophistication and complexity in the realm of agriculture ledalso to great changes within the structure of the Department of Agriculture. Inorder to adjust to the additional activities and different directions that had beentaken, the department experienced its first major reorganization in 1937. The oldbranch structure was superseded by regrouping into services.98 Instead ofbranches based on each sector of agriculture, as in, for instance, the DairyBranch, the new organization was based on function. One service dealt with allmatters related to agricultural production, another with all matters related tomarketing, and a third with all areas of scientific research and development. Theservice dealing with production administered legislation relating to the health ofanimals, to livestock and poultry, to plant products and to plant protection. Theservice dealing with marketing had divisions for dairy products, fruit, vegetables,maple products, and honey, as well as an economics division. The sciencebranch was divided along disciplinary lines. Such reorganizations can haveimportant effects on records keeping and on subsequent archival treatment ofrecords. Major reorganizations frequently result in new systems of recordskeeping to reflect new spheres of responsibilities of each new branch, division,and section. Old records may be incorporated in part or in whole into the newsystem. At the least, the archivist must know the facts of change and relatethem to any changes in records keeping systems in documentation explainingrecords.97Canada, Statutes ofCanada, 1939, c. 13, s. 3(1)(a)(b).98Department of Agriculture, The First One Hundred Years, p. 27.50World War Il was an interesting period for the department. Again, as inWorld War I, the War Measures Act came into effect. The effects of the actwere seen immediately. No agriculturally related legislation was passedbetween and outbreak of war and 1943. The department reflected the nation’spreoccupation with the war effort. Canada played a crucial role in the feeding ofthe allied nations during World War II. At the beginning of the war, plenty offood was produced, not only in Canada, but around the world, particularly in Asiaand Europe. In 1940, with the invasion of France, Belgium, Holland, Denmarkand Norway, the situation changed considerably. Although supplies were cut offin these regions, the accumulated stocks in Canada were large enough to carrythe Allied nations through. When Japan entered the war a year later, the foodsources available in the far east were eliminated. In addition to the pressurethat was consequently put on Canada’s production internationally, there was anincrease in domestic demand because there was, for the first time in at least tenyears, full employment and steady paycheques.99 This new direction is reflectedin the initiatives taken by the government under the auspices of the WarMeasures Act.Until 1943, any new activities on the part of the department were initiatedunder the War Measures Act, created to “confer certain powers upon theGovernor in Council in the event of War, Invasion, or Insurrection.”°° The actgave the government broad powers of control during such a crisis period as longas the measures taken were necessary for “the security, defence, peace, orderand welfare of Canada.”°’ Regulations and orders in council created under the99Canada, Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Supplies, Board, Objectivesfor Canadian Agriculturein 1943, (Ottawa: 1943), p. 7.100Canada, Revised Statutes ofCanada, 1952, c. 288.101bid., s. 3(1).51War Measures Act had the force of law and were enforceable by courts, officersand other authorities. Section three of the act lists several subjects over whichthe government can make regulations. The fifth relates to trading, exportation,importation, production and manufacture. The creation of any new activitiesrelating to agriculture under the War Measures Act was done under thissubsection.In 1939, the Agricultural Supplies Board was established to keep“Canadian agriculture functioning in a manner which would supply the food andfibre needs of the people of Canada and their Allies during the period of the warand leave the Canadian farmer, as far as possible, in a position to follow hisnormal program when peace returns.”02 Cooperation by the provinces wassought to assist in this activity.The Bacon Board was also created in this year by order in council toimplement the terms of the agreement made by the United Kingdom for thedelivery by Canada to Britain of 5, 600, 000 pounds of bacon weekly.’°3 Thisrather astronomical figure meant that the board had a number of importantduties, outlined in the annual report of the minister. The board had to regulateexports of bacon, arrange price differentials between grades, store the productto supplement seasonal shortages, and accumulate a fund for priceimprovement and pay storage charges.’°4In 1940, Order in Council p.c. 2138 created the Dairy Products Board, themandate of which was to regulate the export of dairy products to the UnitedKingdom according to the agreement made between Canada and Britain.’05 One102Cda, Report ofthe Minister ofAgriculture, 1939/40, p. 148.103 Canada, Report ofthe Minister ofAgriculture, 1939/40, p. 153.52year later, Order in Council 2520 created the Special Products Board to regulatethe export to the United Kingdom of any “product of agriculture processed orunprocessed except bacon or dairy products.”°6 In 1943 two more boards werecreated by order in council. The Agricultural Food Board, which was tocooperate with the Agricultural Supplies Board, assisted in the development ofprograms of the Department of Agriculture for the wartime production of food. Itwas also responsible for paying subsidies to assure required production ofessential foods.’°7 The former Bacon Board was reconstituted as well in thisyear to form the Meat Board. It was given the responsibility of carrying out allcontracts or agreements for meat exports entered into by the CanadianGovernment with any other government or agency.108 These boards, created inthe first years of the war, were responsible for virtually all aspects of agricultureas that function related to the war effort.In the later years of the war the government once again began todelegate authority through more traditional lines. In 1943 a new act pertaining toagriculture was enacted, entitled the Farmers’ Creditors Arrangement Act, whichaimed to alleviate farmers’ chronic indebtedness: “it was in the national interestto retain such farmers on the land as efficient producers and for such purpose itis necessary to provide means whereby compromises or rearrangements may beeffected for debts of such farmers.”109 In 1945 the Agricultural Prices SupportAct was proclaimed, administered by the Agricultural Prices Support Board,reporting to the minister of agriculture. The purpose of the board was to105da,Report ofthe Minister ofAgriculture, 1940-41, p. 170.106pth, Report ofthe Minister ofAgriculture, 1941-42, p. 161.107CaId2., Report ofthe Minister ofAgriculture, 1943-44, p. 179.108Canada, Report ofthe Minister ofAgriculture., p. 180.‘°9ith Statutes ofCanada, 1943-44, c. 26 (preamble).53“endeavour to ensure adequate and stable returns for agriculture by promotingorderly adjustment from war to peace conditions and shall endeavour to secure afair relationship between the returns from agriculture and those from otheroccupations.”° The board had the authority to carry out a number ofresponsibilities, such as prescribe prices at which the board could purchaseproducts, sell or dispose of any product purchased, and appoint commodityboards to undertake the purchase and disposal of agricultural products.” Thegovernment was thus directly supporting agriculture by buying products fromfarmers at market price and then selling them when possible.Another act that was enacted during this time right at the end of the warwas the Farm Improvement Loans Act to “encourage the provision ofIntermediate Term and Short Term Credit to Farmers for the Improvement anddevelopment of farms and for the improvement of living conditions thereon.”2This act, administered by the Minister of Finance, allowed the government to paya bank the amount of loss that was sustained by it as a result of a farmimprovement loan, under certain conditions. Such an act does not deal directlywith the products of agriculture, that is, it is essentially regarding loans asopposed to the Agricultural Prices Support Act, which gave the government thecompetency to buy agricultural products to buoy the price of the product, but it ispart of the function of agriculture since it attempts to assist or promote theagricultural economy of Canada.By the end of the war the various boards that had been created by thegovernment under the War Measures Act were still active even though the war0Canada, Statutes ofCanada, 1944-45, c. 29, s. 9(2).11Ibid, s. 9(1)(a)(b)(d)(i).“2Cth, Statutes, 1944-45, c.41 (preamble).54had ended. From 1945 until 1947 they were active under the NationalEmergency Transitional Powers Act. In 1947 that act was rescinded, but theMeat, Dairy Products and Special Products Boards continued to exist by orderin-council as the three commodity boards under the Agricultural Products Actuntil 1951.113 Thus, the activities that were created by the circumstances of thewar continued in a slightly altered form afterwards.World War II was a significant period in the history of Canada. Thebureaucratic machine grew tremendously during this time and did not return toits pre-war size in the years after the war, as seen, for example in thecontinuation of the Meat, Dairy Products and Special Products Board. Whilegiven responsibility to carry out activities in a certain context, they continued toexist and legislation was created so that they had the competence to continuetheir activities, in a slightly altered form, during peace time. It is important tonote that while these boards take part in administering matters under theagricultural function, they are separate bodies with their own competence, notpart of the Department of Agriculture. Government played a greaterinterventionist role in the economy and was involved into ever increasing areasof previously considered private life. This is also evidenced in the Department ofAgriculture, as the government continued to directly finance and assist farmers,particularly in the prairies, a practice which began in the depression years,continued during the war to help farmers maintain high production rates andlasted into the post-war era. The activity which developed extensively during thewar was administering direct financial aid to farmers, either through buying theirproducts at market rates or by direct financial assistance in the way of loans orassistance with loans. While the government undertook this responsibility with a3Canada, Report ofthe Minister ofAgriculture, 1947-48, p. 241.55wartime agenda in mind, the support continued and increased after the war,signifying the period of 1939 to 1945 as a vital era in agriculture in terms of thegrowth and maturity of this one particular activity.The period between 1918 and 1945 was a time of remarkable growth anddevelopment in agriculture in Canada. The first ten to fifteen years saw thedevelopment of legislation intended to regulate and inspect the quality ofagricultural products to guard against fraud and to maintain a high standard forforeign and local markets. In the following years, financial assistance to farmersduring the depression and the war grew and developed, once again expandingthe function of agriculture. Some of this growth in activities had to beaccommodated in the structure of the department. For ten years between 1928and 1938, the department proceeded to integrate its branches in order to “carryout the principle of bringing under one administrative head activities similar incharacter and purpose.”4 In 1937 the department was officially reorganizedinto branches which did indeed group similar activities under one head. Thisphilosophy was maintained over the years of the war, with the exception of theaddition of the Meat, Dairy and other boards. However, the number of bodieswith a part in administering agricultural affairs outside the structure of theDepartment grew steadily in this period, a trend carried on after the war.Ultimately, the activities under the function of agriculture can be groupedinto three basic areas. The department was responsible for the regulation ofagriculture, that is, activities such as the inspection of animals and products, andestablishing grading standards to ensure quality production. The second areawas the marketing and promotion of agriculture. Lastly, providing financial aid tofarmers and agricultural organizations was an area of activities that grew114Hodgetts, Canadian Public Service, p. 174.56tremendously particularly in the 1920’s and 1930’s and would continue to growand be an increasingly important scope of activity in post 1945 agriculture.57Chapter FourAgriculture, 1945-1989: Expansion and SpecializationThe Depression and War eras of Canadian agriculture set precedentsthat, once begun, the government could not stop. Regulation of the agriculturaleconomy on the prairies and elsewhere in Canada continued. A strong demandcontinued after World War II for direct government intervention in providingminimum purchase prices for farm products.”5 The legislation of this erareflected the demands of farmers as well as the economy. The infrastructurecreated to administer the acts of parliament relating to agriculture increasedenormously. Often the act that designated a new activity within agriculture alsoprovided for the creation of an agency to administer that activity, which thenreported to the minister of agriculture. Most of the growth of the activities duringthis time period was directed towards financial assistance. As the departmentgrew, its structure became less stable. From one year to the next, the structurechanged in an attempt to better administer an ever broader range of activities.This department reflects the situation elsewhere in the federal government, andserves as an example of the instability of structure and the relative stability offunction even as activities grew at a rapid pace.l15 Garland, S.C. Hudson, Government Involvement in Agriculture: A Report Preparedfor theFederal Task Force on Agriculture, (Ottawa: Crown Copyrights, 1968), p. 29.58An early example of the change occurred in 1949 with the AgriculturalProducts Marketing Act, which aimed to “improve the methods and practices ofmarketing agricultural products of Canada.”16 This act came about because theWar Measures Act was withdrawn, thereby leaving an activity without anexpressed competence. It dealt with both interprovincial and export trade andelicited the support and cooperation of the provincial governments, some ofwhom had already enacted legislation respecting local marketing of agriculturalproducts. The problem of shared jurisdictions between the federal governmentand provincial governments was dealt with by having the federal governmentdelegate powers to a provincial agency.117 Normally, interdelegation of powersfrom one legislature to another is not allowed on the grounds that it adjusts thedivision of powers. However, it is allowed if the federal parliament makes aprovincial person its agent or delegate: “the Federal Parliament [can delegate]powers to a person named by a provincial legislature. That person thenbecomes the delegate of the Federal Parliament when he [or she] is exercisingthe powers granted to him [or her] by Parliament.”8 From an archival point ofview, this is very interesting since it would be a matter for archivists in provincialarchives to determine when receiving the records of the federally mandatedactivity in the records of a provincial agency.In the 1950’s several acts were passed to set national standards foragricultural products and regulate interprovincial and international trade in them.The Canada Dairy Products Act set “national standards for dairy products and to1 6pth, Statutes ofCanada, 1949, c. 16.“7RE. Haack, D.R. Hughes, and R.G. Shapiro, The SplinteredMarket: Barriers to InterprovincialTrade in Canadian Agriculture, (Toronto: James Lorimer and Co. Publishers, 1981), p. 17118Jones and Dc Vifiars, Principles ofAdministrative Law, p. 34.59regulate interprovincial and international trade in dairy products.”9 This actwas similar in intent to the Agricultural Products Board Act, except that the DairyProducts Act also called for establishing national standards, an activity that hasbeen present in agriculture since before the first world war. As well, the act wasdesigned not to promote but to regulate trade in dairy products. The act statedthat export of dairy products from Canada or between the provinces waspossible only if written consent was given from the Minister of Agriculture.’20The act also gave the minister the authority to make regulations as long as theywere not inconsistent with the intent of the act. These activities of standardizingand regulating were not new, but the Dairy Products Act was concerned with anew area of regulation - international and interprovincial trade. This was a newconcern in the 1950’s as trade relations had to be renewed, or newly attracted.In 1955 the Meat Inspection Act and the Canada Agricultural ProductsStandards Act were both established to regulate trade. While the CanadaAgricultural Products Standards Act was identical to the Dairy Products Act in itsintention, the Meat Inspection Act focused on the inspection of meat enteringinto interprovincial and international trade.’2’In 1957 the Agricultural Prices Support Act was repealed and replaced bythe Agricultural Stabilization Act, which created the Agricultural StabilizationBoard.’22 The act aimed at:stabilizing the prices of agricultural commodities inorder to assist the industry of agriculture to realize119Canada, Statutes ofCanada, 1951, c. 30.‘20Jb1d s. 4(a)(b).121r,la, Statutes ofCanada, 1955, c. 27 (preamble), and c. 36.‘22SW Garland, S.C. Hudson, Government Involvement in Agriculture: A Report Preparedfor theFederal Task Force on Agriculture, (Ottawa: Crow Copyrights, 1968), p. 209.60fair returns for its labour and investment and tomaintain a fair relationship between prices receivedby farmers and the costs of the goods and servicesthat they buy, thus to provide farmers with a fair shareof the national income.’23An advisory committee largely made up of farmers and representatives of farmorganizations to assist the Board was also established under this act.Two acts were proclaimed in 1959, both of which related to assisting thefarming industry. The Farm Credit Act’s purposes were to distribute andadminister farm loans. The Farm Credit Corporation was created as stipulatedin the act, as a successor to the Canadian Farm Loan Board. Under the act thecorporation makes long-term mortgage loans to assist Canadian farmers inorganizing viable farm businesses. The corporation can take and holdmortgages on real and personal property, acquire, hold and sell real property,and acquire by foreclosure any real and personal property mortgaged by thecorporation.’24 The corporation is also responsible for administering the FarmSyndicates Credit Act, whereby loans are made to groups or syndicates of threeor more farmers for the joint purchase of machinery, buildings and installedequipment.’25 Although the minister maintains responsibility for every crowncorporation to ensure accountability, it is completely separate from the structureof the department and acts on its own competence.The second Act, the Crop Insurance Act, involved cooperation betweenthe federal government and the provinces. The Canadian government providesassistance in developing and promoting their crop insurance plans and carriesl23j,Statutes ofCanada, 1957-58, c. 22.124Canada, Statutes ofCanada, 1959, c. 43, S. 1 1(1)(a)(b)(c).125Canada, Department of Agnculture, Organization andActivities ofAgriculture Canada, (Ottawa:Minister of Supply and Services Canada, 1984), p. 85.61out studies of the actuarial soundness of the proposed plans.’26 Under the actthe department agrees to contribute to a participating province fifty percent ofthe administrative costs plus twenty-five percent of the necessary premiums,with the farmer making up the rest. Alternatively, the federal government wouldpay fifty percent of the premiums if the province covered all administrativecosts. 127Most of the acts that were established during the immediate decade afterWorld War II were primarily concerned with supporting the farming industry,particularly in the prairie provinces. Such legislation was designed so that thedesertion of farms that occurred during the extreme drought conditions of theDepression would not happen again. Safety nets were created both to act assupport during crisis time and to raise the income of the average farmer so thathe or she would not be tempted to leave the farm and take better paying work. Itis possible to see how the department had changed its direction, concentratingon managing the agricultural economy, where before it was concerned primarilywith regulation and standardization of products.There was no new agricultural legislation for about seven years after theFarm Credit and Crop Insurance acts. However, in 1966 the Livestock FeedAssistance Act, which established the Canadian Livestock Feed Board wasproclaimed. The objects of the Board were to ensure the availability of feedgrain, the availability of adequate storage space in eastern Canada, reasonablestability in the price of feed grain in eastern Canada, and British Columbia, and afair equalization of feed grain prices in eastern Canada and B.C.’28 The Boardl26•• Garland, Government Involvement in Agriculture, p. 248.127Department of Agriculture, Organization andActivities ofAgriculture Canada, p. 14.128Canada, Statutes ofCanada, 1966-67, c. 52, s. 5(a)(b)(c)(d).62acted in an advisory role to the minister and the government. It was required tomake a continuing study of feed grain requirements in eastern Canada and B.C.The act also established an advisory committee which was to advise the boardon matters relating to grain transportation, storage, prices, and consumption. 129Two other acts were established in this same year along the same linesas the Livestock Feed Assistance Act. The first was the Agricultural and RuralDevelopment Act, known as ARDA. This act, like the Crop Insurance Act,required the cooperation of the provinces. The minister can enter intoagreement with any province that is assuming projects for the more efficient useand economic development of rural lands. These projects can involve researchand investigation into soil and water conservation or the alternative uses of land.This act placed primary responsibility on the provinces to initiate such projects,with the department providing options for cost-sharing, assisting with specialistservices, and with technical advice.’30 This act shows the growth of the activityof the department that involves providing money to the provinces to assist inprojects and plans that they began.In this same year the Canadian Dairy Commission Act establishedanother crown corporation. The Commission aimed to support the market priceof milk and cream and to make payments directly to producers to maintain a highlevel of return for dairy farmers, and at the same time to maintain a low price forconsumers.’3’ Once again, as with ARDA, a consultative committee wasappointed to advise the commission on matters relating to the production andmarketing of dairy products. The federal department was thus again acting as a‘291b1d s. 15(7)(a)(b).130Helen Buckley, Eva Tihanyi, Canadian Policiesfor RuralAdjustment: A Study ofthe EconomicAspects ofARDA, PFRA, MMRA, (Ottawa: Crown Copyrights, 1984), p. 96.131Agricukure Canada, Organization andActivities, p. 77.63stabilizing factor in the agricultural economy, which was probably the majoractivity of the department during this period.The 1970’s was a boom time for Canadian agriculture. There was enoughwater, good weather, healthy prices for crops and other products, and thefederal government was able to provide support in terms of assistance for loans,mortgages and in buying products at a higher than market price for farmers toprosper. Few acts were passed during the seventies, and only in the first half ofthe decade. For the most part, the industry and the government relied oncurrent legislation for administering agriculture. Only four acts were passed: theFarm Products Marketing , Advance Payment for Crops, Two Price Wheat, andthe Western Grain Stabilization acts, delegated to existing agencies of thedepartment.In 1970 a new Canada Grain Act came into force, repealing the old actand replacing the Board of Grain Commissioners with the Canadian GrainCommission. The commission was charged with “the interests of the grainproducers, establish and maintain standards of quality for Canadian grain andregulate grain handling in Canada, to ensure a dependable commodity fordomestic and export markets.”132 The commission provided general supervisionover licensing and inspection activities as well as supervision over the operationof a research lab and the six Canadian government elevators located in WesternCanada.’33The Farm Products Marketing Act was created in 1972 for the purpose offounding the National Farm Products Marketing Council and to authorize theestablishment of national marketing agencies for farm products.’34 This act was‘32C,Statutes ofCanada, 19 70-71-72, c. 7, s. 13.l33J,Department of Agriculture, Annual Report, 19 71-72, P. 81.64necessary because the provincial marketing boards, particularly of chicken andeggs, were competing against each other. This act allows producers of farmproducts other than those covered by the Canadian Wheat Board Act and theDairy Commission Act to develop national or regional marketing plans. Thecouncil’s duties were to advise the minister in all matters relating to theestablishment and operation of agencies and to maintain and promote anefficient and competitive agricultural industry.’35Also during this decade the Animal Disease and Protection Act replacedthe Animal Contagious Diseases Act, the first act ever passed which was part ofthe function of agriculture, and the Plant Quarantine Act replaced theDestructive Insect and Pest Act. Both acts had the same intent, but werereworked for a more modern, more technological era.Two acts were passed from 1974 - 1976 which related to the price ofgrain. The Two-Price Wheat Act was created to stabilize the price of wheat toCanadian producers and consumers.’36 The Western Grain Stabilization Actwas established to “stabilize the net cash flow from the major grain and oilseedcrops in the prairies.”37 The government wanted to protect the infrastructure ofthe Prairie agricultural economy and avoid a recurrence of the economicdownturn of the late 1960’s. Any producer who participates under the act isentitled to receive stabilization payments. This is a voluntary program availableto every farmer who produces grain in the prairie provinces.134Canada, Statutes ofCanada, 19 70-71-72, c. 65.135RE. Haack, The Splintered Market, p. 18.‘36Murray Fulton, Ken Rosaasen, Andrew Sclunitz, Canadian Agricultural Policy and PrairieAgriculture, (Ottawa: Minister of Supply and Services, 1989), p. 39.‘37Ibid., p. 37.65In the late 1970’s and early 1980’s, a new pattern of delegatingresponsibility emerged. Legislation in the past had given authority to one bodyto administer an activity. Later on, particularly after World War II, the agency toadminister the activity was also created in the same legislation. In 1978,however, this pattern began to change. Several acts were placed under theshared responsibility of two ministries. Thus, the Inspection and Sale Act wasadministered by both the Department of Agriculture and the Department ofConsumer and Corporate Affairs, as was the Maple Products Industry Act. TheWestern Grain Stabilization Act was shared by the Department of Agricultureand the minister responsible for the Canadian Grain Board. These acts hadpreviously been administered solely by one department, usually agriculture.’38In 1980, the Canadian Agricultural Products Standards Act and the CanadaDairy Products Act were also placed under the shared responsibility of theDepartments of Agriculture and Consumer and Corporate Affairs. Similarly,responsibility for the Canada Grain Act was shared by the Minister of Agricultureand the Minister of Transport.’39 However, by 1981, the Canada Dairy ProductsAct, the Canada Grain Act, the Inspection and Sale Act and the Maple ProductsIndustry Act were once again solely administered by the department.’40In 1981 the annual report of the Department of Agriculture lists the actsfor which the Minister shares responsibility with another agency. Essentially thismeans that the powers cross functional lines of authority, and thereforeadministration can be shared by two different departments. In fact, this is anattempt to deal with a recurrent problem. Obviously, there are different138, Department of Agriculture, Annual Report, 1978-79, p. 4.39Canada, Department of Agriculture, Annual Report, 1980-81, p. 4.140Canada, Department of Agriculture, Annual Report, 1981-82, p. 4.66functional activities involved in administering affairs related to agriculturalproduction, in marketing agricultural products, and in regulating other affairs onlyindirectly related to agriculture. Not all these activities fall solely within thecompetence of the Department of Agriculture as set out in the acts it administers.Therefore, one means of resolving this question is to create legislation whichaddresses related areas of functional responsibility and assign administration ofthe act to more than one agency to administer. It then becomes necessary toindicate precisely what areas covered in any given act pertain to which agencyand to record than in the administrative history of the agency.The Farm Loans Interest Rebate Act was proclaimed in 1983, with thepurpose of rebating interest on farm loans made under the Farm Credit Act. Theminister was delegated the responsibility of making payments to eligiblefarmers.’4’ Such an act showed how financially strapped farmers were and thenecessity on the part of the government to subsidize the industry, although theagricultural crisis had not yet peaked. The Canagrex Act, established in thesame year, designated the creation of a crown corporation called Canagrex, orthe Canadian Agricultural Export Corporation. The act aimed to “promote,facilitate and engage in the export of agricultural and food products fromCanada.”42 The corporation had the power to purchase and dispose ofagricultural products, enter into contracts with Canadian companies, with foreigngovernments and joint ventures with Canadian businesses, as well as promotethe exportation of Canadian products in general.143 The main purpose of14lC, Statutes ofCanada, 1981,82,83,84, c. 131, s. 3(1)(a)(b).‘42th,Statutes ofCanada, 1981,82,83,84, c. 152.‘431b1d., c. 152, s. 14(1)(a)(b)(c)(d)(e).67Canagrex was to seek and develop new export markets for the agriculture/foodindustry.In a similar vein, the Farm Debt Review Act, and the Farm Improvementand Marketing Cooperative Loans Act were both aimed to assist farmersfinancially. Any farmer in financial difficulty could apply to a Farm Debt ReviewBoard, established in each province or in each region of Canada, for a review offinancial affairs or for assistance. The second act, the Farm Improvement andMarketing Cooperative Loans Act, was meant to ‘9ncrease the availability ofloans for the purpose of improvement and development of farms and theprocessing, distribution or marketing of farm products by cooperativeassociations.”1 The minister was to pay to a lender ninety-five percent of anyloss sustained as a result of a loan made by it to a farmer, but only for particularinvestments such as the purchase of or major repairs to tools, implements, ormachinery, or the purchase of livestock, or of additional land.145 The purpose ofthis act was to make the negotiation of loans to farmers more attractive tolenders because it ensured that the government would pay the outstandingmoney owed if the farmer proved unable to make the loan payments.Increasingly in the post-war period, autonomous agencies with clearlegislative competence were established outside the structure of executivedepartments to administer agricultural affairs. Such a phenomenon indicateshow, as activities have increased, the government has looked for new ways todelegate such activities. Crown corporations, which have no part in the structureof the traditional department, is one such option that works particularly well,especially concerning those activities associated with direct financial assistanceCanada, Statutes ofCanada, 1 98 7-88, c. 31.‘451b1d68to agricultural production and marketing of agricultural products, such as theCanadian Wheat Board. During the same time, a series of review or advisoryboards and committees were also established to assist the minister in carryingout responsibilities delegated to him or her in legislation. Such agencies were arecognition of the complexity of administering the function of agriculture. Aswell, delegation of power from the federal to the provincial governments, throughassigning responsibility to a person named by the provincial legislature wasanother new way of dealing with increased responsibility.The Department of Agriculture itself consolidated its responsibility intothree services: marketing and health of animals, research, and economics. In1959 the Production and Marketing Branch was created, bringing together thoseservices which had previously been separate. In the same year theAdministrative Branch was also created, integrating the Economics andInformation Divisions” In 1967 the department began to united theorganization of the science services. For example, research stations,experimental farms, and research laboratories were grouped into western andeastern divisions. However, while such services were synthesized, a highlycoordinated top structure remained.’47Thus, while Canadian farming prospered in the 1970’s, it faired muchworse in the 1980’s as grain prices fell and drought once again became aproblem. A number of acts were brought in response to this crisis to helpmaintain the industry’s standard of living. However, a large number of acts werealready in existence which supported the farmer. These acts began during thelater years of the Depression, but quickly became much more common in the146Canada, Department of Agriculture, Annual Report, 1959-60, p. 7.‘47Hodgetts, Canadian Public Service, p. 17691950’s and 1960’s as the government tried to prevent a repeat of the 1930’s.While the department continued to administer such acts as the ExperimentalFarms Act or the Animal Contagious Diseases Act, the activity that grewtremendously during the post-war era was that of supporting and subsidizing theagricultural industry in Canada. The minister was increasingly responsible foracts which subsidized the minimum price of a product so that the farmer wouldreceive a decent return. However, it is important to note that while this activityincreased, other activities such as standardization, promotion and regulationalso remained important and vital to agriculture. While acts that were createdbefore and just after World War II were amended and updated in later years,seldom were new act which related to these activities were seldom created.Ultimately, one can no longer assume that agricultural affairs areadministered by one agency. As activities increased and became morecomplicated, so did the manner of delegating them. Anyone trying to understandhow the function of agriculture was carried out needs to be aware of a complexof authority relations: the delegation of functional responsibility, changes instructure, and shared responsibility. Only through giving a clear picture whichcomes from this type of legislative, functional and structural analysis can anysense be made of the context of records creation.70Chapter FiveImplications for PracticeThe examination of the competence of one function of government is atime consuming process that cannot be recreated each time a new accrual ofrecords is received. If archivists working in government repositories recognizethat knowledge of functional responsibility is a valuable tool for bettermanagement of their records, the study must be kept current, becoming thefoundation for certain archival administrative tools that can help archivists in anumber of crucial areas.In the first instance, uncovering the origins of the functions andresponsibilities of government helps to identify the nature of the fonds. TerryEastwood maintains that there are two structures which make up a fonds:internal provenance and external provenance. The internal structure ofprovenance “identifies the relationships among the documents as they wereorganized by the agency accumulating them”, while the external structure ofprovenance “identifies and explains the various administrative relationshipsgoverning the way organizations conduct their business which in turn governsthe way they create and maintain their archives.”48 External structure isdelineated in the process of delegation of authority and function, precisely thefocus of this thesis. Documenting the changes in delegation of authority and148aci, The Archival Fonds, p. 4.71competence offers a means of identifying the bodies responsible for the recordsover time, such as the predecessor, the successor and current agencies.Conversely, the record group tries to maintain administrative andintellectual control over records mainly on structural grounds, conceived whenarchives began to face “the problem of organizing a large, complex and rapidlyincreasing mass of records”.149 A fonds is defined as “the whole of thedocuments that every organization or physical or juridical person accumulates byreason of its function or activity”, a natural aggregate of records unrestricted byorganizational structure.’5°Conversely, a record group, is defined as “a body oforganizationally related records established on the basis of provenance withparticular regard for the administrative history, the complexity, and the volume ofthe records or archives of the organization concerned.”5’The problem with therecord group, is that it attempts to identify records with organizational structure,grouping or separating records to create units of convenient size. In the end,the management of record groups tends to become reduced to a search forstable record keeping systems, which of course are elusive.Michel Duchein, in his article on respect des fonds, offers two solutions tothe problem of reconciling function with structure.152 The first, as mentionedpreviously, is to divide the fonds into chronological units and deal with structurein that manner, and the second is to avoid using administrative structurealtogether. With regard to the first method, Duchein stipulates that the timeperiod must be sufficiently long, the sections must “correspond to well-defined149Car1 Vincent, “The Record Group: A Concept in Evolution,” Archivaria 3, Winter, 1976-1977, p. 3.150School of Library, Archival and Information Studies, “Select List of Terminology”, p. 16.151b1d., p. 8.152Michel Duchein, “Theoretical Principles and Practical Problems”.72periods in the life of the creating agency,” and all documents of the time periodmust be gathered so that the whole section can be dealt with at the sametime.”53 Such requirements make this solution difficult to carry out, given thatoften the structure changes radically every few years so that it can be difficult tocreate a sufficiently long chronological time period for description let along tofulfill all three requirements. The second solution, that of avoiding administrativestructure as a basis for arrangement when changes are frequent, Duchein doesnot elucidate. This thesis does not advocate ignoring structure altogether, sincerecords must be associated with the agency that generated them. Functionalresponsibility alone is not the solution, but rather, function and structure togetherprovide a more complete context for records creation and custodianship.In this case, the fonds is not limited to the function of agriculture, nor tothe department of agriculture. In fact, because of the growth of the activities andthe movement of such activities within the structure of the government as well asthe rise of agencies which exist independently of the department but areresponsible for an aspect of agriculture, the fonds cannot rely merely on functionor structure. Both must be included and in order to accurately representfunction, activities and structure, the maximalist view of the fonds has beentaken. That is, the fonds encompasses the entire Government of Canada. Sucha grand view provides context for activities that shift from one department toanother as well as for the structure of agencies that changes and grows as thegovernment attempts to better manage their responsibilities. In this context, it isalso important to note that neither structure nor function alone can give anaccurate picture of records creation and custodianship. While this thesis hasconcentrated on function, and other systems such as the record group focus on‘53IbiL, p. 80.73structure, both are needed to provide adequate context and informationregarding the records in any organization.The examination of competence is useful when archivists appraise therecords they receive. For example, knowing that the Maple Products IndustryAct was administered by both the Department of Agriculture and the Departmentof Consumer and Corporate affairs for a period from 1978 to 1981 will helparchivists in making decisions regarding the retention or destruction of recordsbecause they will be aware that elsewhere there could be duplication of recordsor a completely new series of records which must be permanently retained. Atthe very least, in terms of appraisal, this sort of study will heighten theawareness of the archivist as to the location of other records series in otheragencies of government. Such knowledge also raises the question of functionversus structure in establishing describable entities. Referring to either functionor structure is not adequate. The solution is to show all relationships and beprepared to create a type of double and triple listing to overcome the problem.Arrangement, the process of identifying where the records belong within afonds, is very difficult when dealing with complicated functions such as theadministration of agriculture. For example, the Inspection and Sale Act of 1873was administered by the Department of Trade and Commerce but was latertransferred to the Department of Agriculture. Within the structural framework ofthe department it no doubt shifted about considerably. Such difficulties arelessened significantly once a study such as the one undertaken in this thesis iscarried out. Obtaining a comprehensive understanding of activities, theirlegislative authority and the bodies responsible for them can greatly ease theburden of arrangement, of identifying records as they belong to the parts of afonds.74Following arrangement is description, the primary tool for achievingintellectual control over records. The key to identifying the fonds as the basis forarchival description is to realize that it is no longer a practical reality to describerecords and their provenance together in what has been considered a traditionalinventory. What is needed first is a recognition that there are no finiteboundaries of the fonds for any function. Agricultural administration is acomplicated function which eventually cannot be managed in the usualdepartmental structure. Crown corporations such as the Canadian DairyCommission, the Farm Credit Corporation and the Canadian Wheat Board wereestablished to deal with the increasing complexities of agricultural subsidizationand financial management. While some corporations were managed by thedepartment of agriculture, others were managed by other departments and latertransferred to agriculture. In the late 1970’s the department of agricultureshared responsibility with other departments for activities such as administrationof the Canada Grain Act in 1980, but by 1981 the department was once againsolely responsible for the act. Such shifts in responsibility alone are difficult todescribe, and the attempt to connect records creators to the records is an evengreater challenge if the archivist is trying to fit every activity, agency and recordinto a neat little box. The fonds must be recognized as a solid concept with amuch more fluid construct in order for more effective description to take place.Hugo Stibbe makes the point that provenance is a means of providingaccess points to records in an archives and indeed, should be the primaryaccess point. Stibbe and others such as David Bearman and Richard Lytle intheir article on the power of provenance argue that an authority file systemproviding linkages to records is the most efficient way of gaining access toinformation: “authority control and authority systems are going to play a central75role in the intellectual control of archival materials.”154 Controlling the names ofgovernment bodies and information about their history is the tool that allowsusers to trace relationships among administrative entities in an organization.Not only is it possible to link the records to public bodies, it is also possible tolink records to public bodies and persons or families: “The authority systemcreates the environment for gaining access to that information in the mostefficient way. The information in the system documents the relationship betweenpersons, families and corporate bodies.”55 Such links of course do not alwaysmean provenencial links. A demarcation between a link of provenance and alink of activities must be made. Nonetheless, this thesis serves as a beginningpoint, showing the relationship between competency, function and activity.This can be seen in the study of one simple activity within the realm ofagriculture. The Experimental Farms Act of 1886 gave the Department ofAgriculture the responsibility to administer ten activities, clearly laid out inlegislation. Thus, we have the competence for the activities stated in the statuteand the agency stated in the statute. Within the departmental structure, though,the responsibility for the act shifted about considerably. However, by havingseparate series descriptions that are based on the activities which generatedthem, it is much easier to provide links with each body responsible for creatingor maintaining a portion of the records.An examination of competence is also useful for developing a functionsvocabulary as part of a thesaurus: “such a vocabulary can be a powerfulindexing language to point to the context of archival holdings without the need154Hugo Stibbe, “linpiementing the Concept of Fonda: Primary Access Point, Multilevel Description andAuthority Control”, Archivaria 34, Summer, 1992, p 121; David Bearman, Richard Lytle, “The Power ofthe Principle of Provenance”, Archivaria 21, Winter 1986/87.155Stibbe, “Implementing the Concept”, p. 121.76for actual examination of the materials themselves for detailed subjectindexing.”56 A thesaurus does not provide the links between records andcreators, but it can be used to locate all the agencies which were responsible forcarrying out a functional responsibility over time. Archivists can then find all therecords relating to a particular competence which had moved around or wasshared by two different agencies. A functions vocabulary, such as the onedeveloped by the Getty Institute for the Art and Architecture Thesaurus,designed largely by archivists who see the necessity for such a tool, can use astudy of functional responsibilities as a starting point to phrase functions andactivities. Legislation expresses the sphere of functional responsibility orcompetence of agencies, and any functions vocabulary, to be effective, will haveto provide terms appropriate to a representation of how competence is actuallyexpressed. For example, one of the activities laid out in the Experimental FarmsAct is to analyze fertilizers to test their value with respect to different crops. Auser, interested in the information regarding fertilizer analysis would be able toretrieve the activity on a database and find out which agencies created therecords over time and therefore determine what records were created.This thesis is also valuable for the administration of freedom ofinformation and protection of privacy legislation. Jay Atherton, in his article onthe continuum, emphasizes the role of the archives as a service to creators andusers: “effective access to information depends upon effective management ofrecords.”57 When organizations produce an access guide so that the public cansee what records each agency of government has and their current accessstatus, a history along with the competency to administer activities or agencies islS6Bmand Lytle, “The Power of the Principle of Provenance”, p. 22.157Jay Atherton, “From Life Cycle to Continuum: Some Thoughts on the Records Management -Archives Relationship”, Archivaria 21, p. 50.77needed. In order to ensure proper access, a guide must be produced yearly andkept current. Such a guide must explain the locus of functional responsibilitiesfor each agency. To be most useful, a functions index can be incorporated sothat the public can obtain access to the records without needing to know theexact agency currently responsible for an activity. A study of the competence ofa function, if kept current, will greatly ease the burden of producing an accessguide year after year.Thus, once again we come back to the comprehensive archival tool thatthe examination of the sources of functional responsibility can become. It iscrucial for archivists to produce such a study for ease of description andindexing, as well as for access purposes. Since tracing the source of functionsis such a time consuming study, it must be accumulated over time and keptcurrent so that it can be used as a reference tool for archivists and the publicalike. It would seem that the best method of describing the records of fonds inpublic institutions is through the separation of records descriptions andprovenance descriptions to ensure the best method of gaining intellectualcontrol. Determining functional responsibility together with structure outlines theboundaries of a fonds in such a manner as could never be achieved using therecord group. Ultimately, the study undertaken in this thesis serves as anillustration of how one connects structure and function and therefore provides amethod to express the functional responsibility of agencies for archivists inarchival institutions.78BibliographyArt and Architecture Thesaurus. Peterson, Toni, Director. New York: OxfordUniversity Press on behalf of the Getty Art History Information Program, 1990.Atherton, Jay. ‘From Life Cycle to Continuum: Some Thoughts on the RecordsManagement - Archives Relationship”. Archivaria 21 (Winter 1986/87). pp. 43-51.Bearman, David. Lytle, Richard.”The Power of the Principle of Provenance”.Archivaria 21 (Winter 1986/87). pp. 14-27.Bell, G.G. Pascoe, Andrew D. The Ontario Government: Structure andFunctions. Toronto: Wall & Thompson Ltd., 1988.Booth, J.F. ed. Economic Organization of Canadian Agriculture. Ottawa:Canadian Council, International Conference of Agricultural Economists, 1934.Buckley, Helen. Tihanyi, Eva. Canadian Policies for Rural Adjustment: A Studyof the Economic Aspects of ARDA, PFRA, MMRA. Ottawa: Crown Copyrights,1984.Canada. Department of Agriculture. Canadian Agriculture: The First HundredYears. Ottawa: Information Division, 1967.Canada. Department of Agriculture. Organization and Activities of AgricultureCanada. Ottawa: Minister of Supply and Social Services Canada, 1984.Canada. “The Encouragement of our Agricultural Industries”. Journals of theHouse of Commons of the Dominion of Canada Appendix 6. 1884.Cowan, J.G. “Administrative Law,” The Canadian Encyclopedia. J.H. Marsh, ed.Edmonton: Hurtig Publishers, 1985.Duchein, Michel. “Theoretical Principles and Practical Problems of Respect desFonds in Archival Science.” Archivaria 16 (Summer 1983), pp. 64-82.Eastwood, Terry, ed. The Archival Fonds: From Theory to Practice. Bureau ofCanadian Archivists, 1992.Fowke, Vernon C. Canadian Agricultural Policy: The Historical Pattern.Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1947.79Bibliography continuedFulton, Murray. Rosaasen, Ken. Schmitz, Andrew. Canadian Agricultural Policyand Prairie Agriculture. Ottawa: Minister of Supply and Services, 1989.Gall, Gerald L. The Canadian Legal System. 3rd ed. Toronto: Carswell LegalPublications, 1990.Garland, S.W. Hudson, S.C. Government Involvement in Agriculture: A ReportPrepared for the Federal Task Force on Agriculture. Ottawa: Crown Copyrights,1968.Haack, R.E. Hughes, D.R. Shapiro, R.G. The Splintered Market: Barriers toInterprovincial Trade in Canadian Agriculture. Toronto: James Lorimer and Co.,1981.Hodgetts, J.W. The Canadian Public Service: A Physiology of Government.Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1974Hodgetts, J.W. Pioneer Public Service: An Administrative History of the UnitedCanadas. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1955.Jenkinson, Hilary. A Manual of Archive Administration. Oxford: ClarendonPress, 1922.Jones, David P., de Villars, Anne S. Principles of Administrative Law. Toronto:Carswell Legal Publications (Western Division), 1985.Lower, J. Arthur. Western Canada: An Outine History. Vancouver: Douglas &Mcintyre Ltd., 1983.Mallory, J. The Structure of Canadian Government. Toronto: Gage Publishers,1984.Muller, S. Feith, J.A. Fruin, R. Manual for the Arrangement and Description ofArchives. 2nd ed. New York: H.W. Wilson Company, 1968.Norton, Margaret Cross. Norton on Archives: The Writings of Margaret CrossNorton on Archival and Records Management. Mitchell, Thornton W., ed.Society of American Archivists, 1979.Schellenberg, T. R. Modern Archives: Principles and Techniques. Chicago:University of Chicago Press, I 956, reprint, 1975.80Bibliography continuedScott, P.J. Smith, CD. Finlay, G. “Archives and Administrative Change: SomeMethods and Approaches.” Archives and Manuscripts Vol.7-8, 1979-1980.University of British Columbia. School of Library, Archival and InformationStudies, “Select List of Archival Terminology.” n.d.Vincent, Carl. “The Record Group: A Concept in Evolution”. Archivaria 3(Winter, 1976-1977). pp. 3-16.StatutesCanada. Revised Statues of Canada. 1906. c. 85.______Revised Statutes of Canada. 1953. c. 288.Canada. Statutes of Canada. 1886. c. 23.Statutes of Canada. 1886. c. 24.Statutes of Canada. 1890. c. 24.Statutes of Canada. 1891, c. 36.______•Statutes of Canada. 1894. c. 37Statutes of Canada. 1901. c. 2.Statutes of Canada. 1907. c. 27.Statutes of Canada. 1910. c. 31.Statutes of Canada. 1910. c. 59.Statutes of Canada. 1913. c. 5.Statutes of Canada. 1920. c. 47.•Statutes of Canada. 1922. c. 43._Statutes of Canada. 1923. c. 15.81Bibliography continued______•Statutes of Canada.Statutes of Canada.Statutes of Canada.•Statutes of Canada._Statutes of Canada.__Statutes of Canada.__Statutes of Canada._Statutes of Canada._•Statutes of Canada.Statutes of Canada.Statutes of Canada.Statutes of Canada.Statutes of Canada._•Statutes of Canada.Statutes of Canada.Statutes of Canada.Statutes of Canada.Statutes of Canada._Statutes of Canada.Statutes of Canada.Statutes of Canada.1922. c. 5.1925. c. 33.1927. c. 6.1927. c. 40.1927. c. 43.1935. c. 23.1935. c. 531937. c. 30.1939. c. 50.1939. c. 31.1939. c. 28.1939. c. 13.1943-44. c. 26.1944-45. c. 29.1944-45. c. 41.1949. c. 16.1951. c.30.1955. c.27.1957-58. c. 22.1959. c. 43.1966-67. c. 52.82Bibliography continued______•Statutes of Canada.Statutes of Canada.Statutes of Canada.Statutes of Canada.Statutes of Canada.Statutes of Canada.1966-67. c. 34.1970-71-72. c. 7.1970-71-72. c. 65.1981,82,83,84. c. 131.1981,82,83,84. c. 152.1987-88. c. 31.Annual ReportsCanada. Department of Agriculture. Report of the Minister of Agriculture. 1869._____________________Report of the Minister of Agriculture. 1872.________Report of the Minister of Agriculture. 1873.Report of the Minister of Agriculture. 1877._Report of the Minister of Agriculture. 1892.Report of the Minister of Agriculture. 1896.Report of the Minister ofAgriculture. 1929.Report of the Minister of Agriculture. 1934-40.41.Report of the Minister of Agriculture. 1939-Report of the Minister of Agriculture. I 940-Report of the Minister of Agriculture. 1941-35.42.83Bibliography continued52.60.61.Report of the Minister ofAgriculture.Report of the Minister of Agriculture.Report of the Minister ofAgriculture.Report of the Minister of Agriculture.Report of the Minister ofAgriculture.Annual Report. 1963-64Annual Report. 1968-69.Annual Report. 1971-72.Annual Report. 1978-79.Annual Report. 1980-81.Annual Report. 1981- 947-1951-1959-1960-84


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