Canada Before Confederation

Timeline created by trytri
  • Mar 25, 1400

    Canada Before Europeans

    Canada Before Europeans
    For thousands of years before the 1500s, Aboriginal peoples populated the land which is now known as Canada. They were the first people here, and they lived all across the land. Ojibway, Blackfoot, Iroquois, and Haida people are just a few examples. (Please note that the date that says March 25 on this timeline is just a random date. I was forced to pick a specific date, so I just picked this one!)
  • Oct 12, 1492

    Christopher Columbus Discovers North America

    Christopher Columbus Discovers North America
    On October 12, 1492, Chrisopher Columbus' crew aboard the 'Pinta' first spotted the Americas. Christopher Columbus is widely known to be the first man to discover America. However, when he got there, there were obviously many first nations peoples. It is also said that vikings had also discovered the Americas, before him. This means that Columbus was NOT the first one to discover the continent. Technically, he was the first European to come to the Americas.
  • May 30, 1534

    Jacques Cartier Arrives

    Jacques Cartier Arrives
    In the 1500s, Europeans started to come and colinate North America. Britain and France were the most prominent nations at this time. At first, the European colonies stayed in what is now Eastern Canada. In 1534, Jacques Cartier sailed to North America, trying to find a way through to China. Instead of finding the Northwest Passage, he eventually got to the Gulf of St. Lawrence. He began to trade furs with the First Nations. He claimed the land in the name of France!
  • Beaver Fur Hats

    Beaver Fur Hats
    Around the year 1600, the demand for beaver pelts in Europe went up greatly. At the time, the hats were very popular - and expensive! The best place to get the beaver skin was in North America (the New World), for two reasons. One was that the fur traders could get the extremely valuable furs from the natives, in exchange only for small knives, iron pots, beads and/or blankets. Also, the beaver was growing extinct back in Europe, the hats were so popular. Thus, more Europeans came to trade furs.
  • Samuel de Champlain

    Samuel de Champlain
    Samuel de Champlain was a prominent figure in the fur trade. It is said that he was one of the first to realize the potential of the trade. Champlain wanted to bring more people from France to settle in what is now Canada, and thankfully he got permission from the king. However, in return, Champlain had to help develop the fur trade, since the trade would bring in so much money towards France! Later, in 1608 (see timeline) Champlain 'founded' what is now Quebec city.
  • Henry Hudson Discovers Hudson Bay

    Henry Hudson Discovers Hudson Bay
    On August 2, 1610, Henry Hudson's ship, the 'Discovery' first sailed into what we now call Hudson's Bay. He was the first European to come to the bay, and, obviously, gave the bay it's name!
  • "Beaver Wars"

    "Beaver Wars"
    For a long time there were conflicts among the First Nations. The Iroquois especially were in feirce competition with many other tribes, such as the Huron. They wanted to trade the beaver pelts for useful items, such as blankets, knives, and iron pots. Because of this conflict, the fur trade almost became extinct. Nicknamed the "Beaver Wars," this did not stop until around the year 1653. Two brave men named Médard Chouart de Groseilliers and Pierre Radisson were said to have saved the trade.
  • Des Groseilliers and Radisson

    Des Groseilliers and Radisson
    A man named Médard Chouart des Groseilliers left on a fur trade expedition on Aug. 6, 1654 . It lasted until Aug. 1656. Natives told him that there was very rich fur country near Hudson Bay, only a seven day canoe journey away. In Aug. 1659 he left again, with his brother-in-law Radisson, bringing back thousands of furs on Aug. 24, 1660. Unfortunately, they did not have a license to do so! They were arrested for illegal trading. (continued on the timeline point titled: Hudson Bay Company (HBC) )
  • Hudson Bay Company (HBC)

    Hudson Bay Company (HBC)
    (continued from timeline point titled: Des Groseilliers and Radisson) Des Groseillers and Radisson were in jail. Needless to say, they were annoyed! After their release, they began working for the English, not the French. Groseilliers went on another fur trade expedition, this time on the English boat 'Nonshuch'. He left in 1668, and returned from Hudson Bay with many furs, in 1669. This led to the founding of the Hudson Bay Company, on May 2, 1670. This company is the oldest in North America!
  • Prince Rupert's Land

    Prince Rupert's Land
    The day that the Hudson Bay Company was founded, King Charles II gave the company an extremely large portion of North America. It was named Rupert's Land, in honour of the kings' cousin, and the company's first governor, Prince Rupert. This land consisted of all the rivers flowing in and out of the bay - the bay's drainage system. The company flourished until 1754 (7 Years' War Begins) They did so well mostly because they had a monopoly on the land: they were the only ones allowed trade on it!
  • Seven Years' War Begins

    Seven Years' War Begins
    Many would agree that this date is when the Seven Years' War started. This is when a Virginian major of militia named George Washington ambushed a small French detchment in Ohio Valley (in present day America). However, the Seven Years' War did not officially begin until 1756 (see timeline).
  • Seven Years' War Officially Starts

    Seven Years' War Officially Starts
    (Please note that the war did not start on exactly March 27. I just had to pick a date!) In 1756, the Seven Years' War officially started. This war was mainly between the French and English, and was mostly fought in Europe. However, lots was also fought in North America, because the two nations both wanted sovereignty over the land. At first, France was winning. However, in 1759, that all changed (see timeline)!
  • Battle of the Plains of Abraham

    Battle of the Plains of Abraham
    On January 13, 1759, the British gained the upper hand on the French. The historic Battle of the Plains of Abraham was fought at this time. Eventually, Britain overtook the city of Quebec. Bit by bit, back in Europe and in North America, Britain prevailed. Finally, in 1763, the war ended, and France gave New France (in North America) to the British, in exchange for keeping the West Indies. They did this because they wanted to save the colonies that brought in the most money.
  • America Gains Independance

    America Gains Independance
    On this date, America gained independance from Britain. The American Revolution was fought, officially starting in 1775. They wanted to gain independance because Britain was raising taxes and ordering new laws that the Americans did not enjoy. After the United States of America gained independance, the only British colonies left in North America were: Newfoundland, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island and the Province of Canada! Much later, this would become the country of Canada!
  • Constitutional Act of 1791

    Constitutional Act of 1791
    The Constitutional Act was put in action on this day. The act basically divided the former Province of Quebec into two parts: Upper and Lower Canada. Upper Canada is around where modern day Ontario is, and Lower Canada is where modern day Quebec is.
  • War of 1812 is Declared!

    War of 1812 is Declared!
    On June 18, 1812 United States president James Madison declared war on Great Britain! At this time, Canada was still made up of British colonies. That meant that the U.S.A was also against Canada! The Americans wanted to expand their land, primarily into Canada! Other reasons, such as not being able to trade very well (because of Britains' war with France), British alliances with the American native tribes who were against American expansion, and humiliation of the American honour.
  • George-Etienne Cartier was Born!

    George-Etienne Cartier was Born!
    On this date, George-Etienne Cartier was born! As a young boy, he was interested in law, like his future co-Prime Minister John A. Macdonald. He first became involved in politics in 1848 when he was elected to the Province of Canada's Assembly. Later, he became leader of a political party called the Parti Bleu.
  • War of 1812 Ends

    War of 1812 Ends
    The Americans wanted to expand and take over Upper (around present day Ontario) and Lower Canada (around present day Quebec). Their plan was to take these areas in a single mass attack! They wanted to invade in four locations. These locations were across from Detroit, in the Niagara area, at Kingston and lastly, south of Montréal. However, Canadians were prepared, and many a battle was fought. Finally, on Christmas eve, the peace treaty of Ghent was signed. Neither side won or lost the war!
  • John Alexander Macdonald is Born!

    John Alexander Macdonald is Born!
    On this date, future Prime Minister John A. Macdonald was born. One day, he would co-lead Canada! He was born in Glasgow, Scotland. When he was five years old, his family moved to Kingston in Upper Canada. He was interested in law from a very early age, and opened his own law office when he was only nineteen. He started his political career as a councillor in 1843. He was later elected as the conservative party's member for Kingston in 1847.
  • The American Civil War

    The American Civil War
    This is when the American Civil War began. This war had a great impact on Canada. The war was caused because of slavery- the U.S couldn't agree about it. At the time, the South were angry, because the North wanted to stop the expansion of slavery. I won't go into detail about the war, and in the end, it pushed Canada towards confederation. This is because the U.S disliked the British, and were threatining Canada. Obviously, this made them more eager to join into a single nation.
  • Charlottetown Conference

    Charlottetown Conference
    Before this conference, the leaders of the New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, and Prince Edward Island had already talked about joining together into a single Maritime union. They were planning a conference. When the leaders from the Province of Canada heard this, they asked if they could come. They were going to propose the possibility of a larger union. When the time came, all the leaders came together (Mcdonald included). Uniting seemed like a good idea. They planned to meet again in Quebec.
  • Quebec Conference

    Quebec Conference
    The Quebec ResolutionsOn this date, the Quebec Conference started. It lasted until Oct. 27. Most of the same leaders came to this Conference, representing the same provinces. At this conference, they talked about how their new country would work. They came up with what were called the Quebec Resolutions (see link), also known as the Seventy-Two resolutions. These resolutions were the frame of how Canada would work!
  • American Civil War Ends!

    American Civil War Ends!
    Thankfully, on this date, the American Civil war ended! It was a terrible war, with many casualties. The good thing about this war was that it pushed the British Colonies, soon to be Canada, towards confederation! The whole continent of North America was relieved when the war ended, because it had set up tension across the whole nation.
  • London Conference

    London Conference
    This date is when the London Conference started. This conference was held in London, England, because before confederation, Canada still belonged to England! The leaders of Canada needed to get 'permission' from England to become their own country. They brought over the Quebec Resolutions, and went over them with the England politicians. The politicians eventually approved the Resolutions, and went on to write the British North America Act (see timeline).
  • British North America Act

    British North America Act
    The British North America Act (now called the Constitutional Act) was given on this day. The act basically stated that Canada was now it's own country!
  • Confederation!

    Confederation!
    On this date, the country of Canada was officially born! It became a country of four provinces: New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Ontario and Quebec. Manitoba and Northwest Territories were added in 1870, and British Columbia was added in 1871. P.E.I joined in 1873, Yukon in 1898, Alberta and Saskatchewan in 1905. Finally, Newfoundland was added to Canada in 1949, and, lastly, Nunavut, in 1999. Today, these beaustiful provinces and territories are what make up the amazing country of Canada!