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This learning resource focuses on the socio-economic changes following the arrival of the railway in the east of Canada. The rail link between the eastern provinces and the Great Lakes allowed a number of townships to play preponderant roles in the economies of their regions. This was the case of Rivière-du-Loup, which quickly became an important commercial and industrial hub. The activities of the railway shops opened up abundant new job opportunities, many of which required specific skills. Workers of English, Scottish, and Irish origin emigrated from or via other Canadian provinces to try their luck in this rapidly-expanding locality. Home construction burgeoned, with whole neighbourhoods springing up in the areas near the railway station. Urbanization was clearly linked to railway development and industrial growth, particularly during second half of the 19th century.