Front Page Titles (by Subject) AUTHOR'S PREFACE. - A History of Banking in all the Leading Nations, vol. 3 (France, Italy, Spain, Portugal, Canada)
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AUTHOR’S PREFACE. - Editor of the Journal of Commerce and Commercial Bulletin, A History of Banking in all the Leading Nations, vol. 3 (France, Italy, Spain, Portugal, Canada) 
A History of Banking in all the Leading Nations; comprising the United States; Great Britain; Germany; Austro-Hungary; France; Italy; Belgium; Spain; Switzerland; Portugal; Roumania; Russia; Holland; The Scandinavian Nations; Canada; China; Japan; compiled by thirteen authors. Edited by the Editor of the Journal of Commerce and Commercial Bulletin. In Four Volumes. (New York: The Journal of Commerce and Commercial Bulletin, 1896). Vol. 3 (France, Italy, Spain, Portugal, Canada).
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ALTHOUGH it is only since the customary decennial revision of the Bank Act in 1890 that the Canadian system of banking can be said to have been a subject of interest to any but the citizens of that country, the history of currency and banking in Canada is of considerable antiquity, dating as it does from the early part of the seventeenth century. And from the point of view of development, it has the advantage of beginning with the simplest conditions of barter, followed by a currency limited to moose and beaver skins, and passing by intelligible stages to a condition of sufficient perfection to be worthy of consideration as one of the half-dozen best systems in the world.
But the total wealth involved in Canadian banking is only about $320,000,000, a sum very small when compared with the great trading nations, such as Great Britain, France, Germany, and the United States. In its early stages, indeed, the actual money involved was so trifling that it seems scarcely worth while to record such facts in history. Principles, however, are more important than the range of their application, and in the history of the development, of Canada, whether we consider banking, or representative government, or any other important branch of society, its people have always shown a strong disposition to discuss the reasons of things, whether the application at the moment was important or not. If there are any general principles lying at the foundation of banking they will assert themselves as well in a small volume of business as in the transactions of a great nation.
In attempting to set forth the history of the currency and banking of Canada, up to the last revision of the Bank Act, the facts fall naturally into the following groups:
1608-1760, New France. Card money and other paper issues—1685-1719, 1729-1749, and 1750-1760.
1760-1791, British occupation. Country without paper money. Coins of several countries a legal tender.
1791-1812, Representative government established in 1791, but attempts to obtain charters for banks of issue unsuccessful.
1812-1817, Paper money issued by the Army-bill Office.
1817-1867, Joint-stock banks under provincial charters.
1867-1890, Dominion of Canada. Charters issued by the Federal instead of Provincial Government.
The writer has endeavored to deal with these periods as succinctly as possible in order that he might write more fully regarding the nature of the act now in force.
The space at disposal does not permit of the present work being more than a study of the development and principles of Canadian banking, but care has been taken to make such references as may enable the reader to obtain access to histories which deal fully with the various periods, and present in detail all important incidents. The writer has also been careful to avoid the mention by name of banks or individuals, excepting so far as such a course was necessary in writing a mere history of development.