The Canadian Journey – From Colony to a Dominion… In 1867, Canada became a ‘Dominion’ under the BNA Act.
DOMINION DAY currently known as Canada Day, was a dream come true.
Once upon a time, there was no Canada.
There was North America with 13 British colonies in what is now the United States of America; there was Acadia (currently Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and PEI) and there was New France (currently Ontario and Quebec).
In the mid 1700s, Acadia became the British colonies of Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and PEI. New France became the Province of Canada
This was the new British North American (BNA) colonies.
In the late 1700s, the 13 British colonies became independent of their ‘parent state’ – Britian, and became the United States of America. The separation from Britain was messy. The US wanted nothing to do with its ‘parents’ and did not even want them hanging around in North America as the British colonies of Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, PEI and Canada (the BNA).
The colonies were British North American colonies, governed by a system of local government similar to Britain’s, with all final authority resting in the crown of the British monarch. World events brought the BNA colonies together for their preservation and protection. They realized that the sum of the whole was greater than the individual parts.
War, Manifest Destiny, and Rupert’s Land
In the mid 1800s, Britain fought with Russia in the Crimean War (1853-1856). Russia had gone to the famous European banking family – the Rothschilds, for a loan for the war. They lost to Britain and the loan was eventually called.
Russia owned Alaska. Both Russia and the US shared the same dream – to kick Britain out of North America. The Americans, at that time, also believed in the doctrine of ‘manifest destiny’… that ALL of North America was given to them by God. Russia sold Alaska to the US, hoping that the US would soon be able to buy Rupert’s Land too, to fulfil their dream.
Meanwhile in the BNA Colonies…
The Premiers of Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, PEI, Upper Canada and Lower Canada observed the unfolding events south of the border with great interest and concern.
The spectre of the American Civil War (1861-1865), reminded them of the War of 1812 when they were invaded by the Americans; the sale of Alaska (1866) to the Americans meant that they were hemmed in by the US above and below. They did not want annexation.
After much debate the Atlantic colonies (NB, NS, PEI) agreed to include the two Canadas (Upper and Lower) in their Charlottetown Conference in 1864. By October of 1865 they met in Quebec, formulating a draft constitution. From December 1866 to February 1867, the constitution was finalized in London with the projected date for the birth of the Dominion on July 1 1867.
And to deal with the question of the Americans purchasing Rupert’s Land, Confederation allowed for the smooth transition of Rupert’s Land into the posession of the Dominion of Canada by 1869. By 1870, Manitoba was born.
And then, Pierre Trudeau changed it after 114 years. Read about it HERE.
Do you think it is time to reclaim Dominion Day? Tell us your thoughts at: email@example.com.
HAPPY DOMINION DAY TO YOU!!!