Dirk Hoerder shows us that it is not shining railroad tracks or statesmen in Ottawa that make up the story of Canada but rather individual stories of life and labour - Caribbean women who care for children born in Canada, lonely prairie homesteaders, miners in Alberta and British Columbia, women labouring in factories, Chinese and Japanese immigrants carving out new lives in the face of hostility. Hoerder examines these individual experiences in Creating Societies, the first systematic overview of the total Canadian immigrant experience. Using letters, travel accounts, diaries, memoirs, and reminiscences, he brings the immigrant's experiences to life. Their writings, often recorded for grandchildren, neighbours, and sometimes a larger public, show how immigrant lives were entwined with the emerging Canadian society. Hoerder presents an important new picture of the emerging Canadian identity, dispelling the Canadian myth of a dichotomy between national unity and ethnic diversity and emphasizing the long-standing interaction between the members of a different ethnic groups.