Canadian Northern Railway
1896 Started operation as a local line in Manitoba.
Built up a system in the Prairie provinces
By 1906 the system comprised more than 2400 miles
By 1917 the system included over 5000 miles in the Prairie province.
The Canadian Northern depended for west-bound rail traffic on what the companies in the East, one of which was a rival , handed to it. On the traffic which it collected in the West, it lost the long haul to the East. Not unnaturally the company looked to reach out to the East of the country.