Amy Shaw


Under the War Veterans Allowance Act (1930) some veterans of the War in South Africa (1899-1902) became eligible for support from the Canadian government. The terms of eligibility and the discourse around granting these pension allowances echo debates during the war itself, with a focus on the men’s physicality and an ambiguity about the country’s relations with the British Empire. The act required both military service and impecunity of the veterans it proposed to assist. The veterans’ interactions with the government, asserting both need and earned reward, position the Act as a significant point of transition in the country’s discourse about what supports citizens had a right to expect from their government.