National Geographic : 1941 Nov
Canada's War Effort Canada's New Optical Glass Industry Is a "War Baby" His head protected from flying splinters, the workman chops away the clay pot, then removes large chunks of the rapidly cooled glass. These lumps will be broken into smaller pieces, annealed, and then ground and polished into lenses for range finders, gun sights, and periscopes for submarines and tanks (page 570). To supply the war demand, Research Enterprises, Ltd., backed by the Dominion, set up workshops and laboratories to make optical glass, never before manufactured in Canada. early autumn of 1941 in the active Army, the Air Force, the Navy, and the Reserve Army. The end is not in sight yet. Every force is expanding rapidly. Every plan is fluid and can be increased, and every plan increases so fast that figures published now will cer tainly be out of date in three months. Soon around 1,100,000 men and women, or roughly a tenth of the nation, will be directly engaged in the war. Supporting them is an incalculable body of workers in factories, farms, mines, woods. Since war costs absorb some 40 per cent of the national income, it is fair to say that Canadians on the average devote three and a half hours in an eight-hour working day to maintaining the total war effort. Canadian Women Always Help Canada is heading into a grave labor short age, but there is a reserve of workers in non essential industries that can be closed, and the available number of women has not been seriously depleted. Women's auxiliaries to the three fighting services are being formed now, to do lighter work behind the lines. No "con spicuous" make-up, no earrings, no handbags, no jewelry but wedding and engagement rings, neat coiffures and choose your own undies these are the regulations of the new women's army. Already, of course, Canada has its women's nursing units, and all over the country house wives have been learning first aid and crawling through the grease at the corner garage to study the repair of army trucks. When Mr. Howe flew to New York he had more in mind than planes. He was thinking also of machinery. Nine precious months had been wasted in the illusion that Canada would not or could not become a major producer of armaments. Now, in the early summer of 1940, the Government, perhaps hardly realiz ing itself what this involved, ordered the im mediate construction of more new factories than the nation would normally build in 20 years. The experience was new and unsettling.