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The founding of Canada. In the hope that this will be a less

by Rob_Boyter / September 8, 2014 2:16 AM PDT

acrimonious discussion than has recently been the case.


Next year is the 200th birthday of John A. MacDonald, Canada's first prime minister (and a Conservative) while 2017 will be Canada's 150th birthday.

The French established their permanent colony here in 1603, partly as a permanent base for a fishing port to supply France, partly for the massive fur trade which quickly emerged. The fur trade was so rich that the British established a merchant venturer company based upon the claim for Britain of the watershed surrounding Hudson's Bay by Hendrik Hudson, a Dutch captain working for the British Crown, just as Giovanni Caboto was a Genoese captain in the service of the British Crown when he discovered New-found-land in 1497.

Hudson also explored the coastline which became the 13 Colonies.

Archaeology has revealed both a Viking settlement in Newfoundland dating back to the 11th Century, and Portuguese whaling colonies, pre-dating John Cabot's (Giovanni Caboto) discovery of Newfoundland, at Red Bay. There is evidence to indicate that whalers over-wintered at Red Bay. All of this occurred well before 1490. A piece of iron (an axe head) with a Portuguese makers mark still identifiable was recently found in Ontario, having been traded all the way up the St Lawrence river and into Ontario in the are between Hamilton and Toronto about 30 miles north of the lake.

Thanks to the precedent of the American Revolution, Canada was handled much more sensibly by the British Colonial authorities, with limited self government being introduced in the 1830's and a negotiated autonomy fianlly being arranged in 1867. July 1st to be exact. The people involved in this great undertaking, many of whom like Sir John A. MacDonald had been born in Britain, are fascinating characters. It is a wonder sometimes that so much good sense arose from characters inclined to drink rather heavily. Sir John A.'s home in Toronto was the home of the Dean of the Graduate School's offices when I was attending, though his primary home in Canada was in Kingston. Kingston was a leading contender for the over-all capitol, until its proximity to the US straight across Lake Ontario pushed it out of contention and a separate newly founded town on the Ontario Quebec border, formerly Bytown, now Ottawa was chosen.


There are quite a lot of Scots in the first 100 years, and quite a lot of French Quebeckers.


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by TONI H / September 8, 2014 3:30 AM PDT

>>>>Thanks to the precedent of the American Revolution, Canada was handled much more sensibly by the British Colonial authorities, with limited self government being introduced in the 1830's and a negotiated autonomy finally being arranged in 1867 (emphasis mine)

Obviously the Brits weren't willing to let Canada 'self-govern' which is pretty much what the American Revolution was about, so the only 'sensible' thing that came out of that experience is that the Brits didn't want to lose more of their people or send more overseas for another all-out war. A compromise of sorts was good enough for them, but I wonder how long it was before Canada broke away completely and became totally self-governing, and how did that finally take place?

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This isn't entirely true. There was unrest in the 1820's &
by Rob_Boyter / September 9, 2014 12:46 AM PDT
In reply to: Interesting

the 1830's owing to the actions of the ruling elite, who were Canadian born, not English. This group of inter-related wealthy families were called the Family Compact http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Family_Compact
and ultimately provoked a fairly minor armed rebellion in 1837 in both Upper and Lower Canada. Three years later, in 1840 the limited self government was granted. Then 27 years later near-complete self government. The last limiting ties were cut 64 years later, due to the First World War.


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Lord Dufferin was sent to Canada following 1837, and wrote
by Rob_Boyter / September 9, 2014 1:26 AM PDT

this back to England.
''After the Rebellions of 1837, Lord Durham, was sent to Canada to make recommendations on reform. Durham's Report on the Affairs of British North America states that it is impossible

"To understand how any English statesman could have ever imagined that representative and irresponsible government could be successfully combined." ''

''Irresponsible'' in this case means Not Responsible to the Representative Assemblies. For all that there was a species of legislature, its only ability was to advise the Governors General of the two ''provinces''. The Governors General were surrounded by their own groups of advisors, drawn from the Tory Family Compact in Upper Canada, and the Chateau Clique in Lower Canada. They routinely ignored the ''Representative Assemblies'' advice and imposed rulings favouring one member or another of the Family Compact.

Given the roots of the American Revolution, all the Rebels were nonetheless of British origin. Imagine throwing an entirely different nationality into the mix, and one which outnumbered the British as well. That was the situation in Canada where the French Canadians outnumbered the British. The patience of the Canadian populace, including the French Canadians is, thus, remarkable. It also makes one wonder just what was going on behind the scenes in the 13 Colonies which caused the Crown through its Legislative and Governmental arms to decide to impose taxation which was not imposed upon Canada. Were I to tell you, you`d dismiss it as my opinion, therefore I reccommend you find a good modern history which talks about the troubles in the 13 colonies before the revolution. Smuggling, provocation of native populations and much much more.

Find a history which isn`t a whitewash or part of the American Mythology.


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Something I found
by TONI H / September 9, 2014 2:37 AM PDT

was the origin of the term 'redneck'......The Scots were driven out of part of a country they lived in by Britain, and were forced into moving to a far northern section of Ireland, after many long years of battles between them. They were then known as Scot-Irish because even the Irish were fighting with them and weren't wanted. Most were 'hill' people who lived under harsh conditions but were happy with that lot in life.

They left that area and migrated to America where they made their way into the Appalachian Mountains (from Pennsylvania to Georgia...including North and South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, and West Virginia) shortly after the colonies were established. When the Brits decided they wanted the AppMtns because of the huge coal deposits there that could become (and eventually did) a huge money maker for fuel, etc., the Scot-Irish took up arms against them because they saw the Brit authority the same way they saw it before....they were being pushed out of their land and lives.

Even tho those 'clans' were all separated by large numbers of miles, the word went out and they all banded together to fight off the Brits once again....they only wanted to be left alone after already fighting the Indians in order to have a life in peace (which they eventually got even with the Indians). The Brits lost every battle and eventually gave it up.

However, because the hill people didn't have uniforms, did not use short rifles with bayonets like the Brits that required closeup fighting, wore clothes they fashioned from animals they killed, perfected the long rifle that could kill from long distances (which made it easier to blend into the wilderness they had come to know and didn't have to stay clustered together like the Brits did during the fighting), they wore red bandanas around their necks so they could spot each other easier and not kill each other by accident. The Brits referred to those hill people as 'rednecks' and it stuck.

Nearly all of 'our' music here in the AppMtns came from old Scot-Irish folk songs that eventually turned into 'country music' and there are still some terms of the language that are still used to this day that actually came from their dialect. Eventually moonshine came into being as a very profitable way for these people to make a few bucks....prohibition was the best thing that happened for them and stock car racing came into being because those 'shiners' souped up their cars for outrunning the cops on back/dirt roads while they carried their product or returned home after delivery.

A very rich and plentiful history here.......and still made fun of by 'city folk' because they haven't got a clue about how much richer their lives are because of these hill people.

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Link please.
by Rob_Boyter / September 9, 2014 3:06 AM PDT
In reply to: Something I found

The Scots were members of the Dalriada group in northern Ireland who sailed from Ireland to the area of Scotland called Galloway. Ayr, Dumfries, Galloway, etc. The date is unclear but is probably 8th to 10th Century During the time of the "20 Years Tyranny of Oliver Cromwell" (that's what it was called when my mother, born in 1904, was a girl in school) Scots were then encouraged to move to Ireland as tenants for the English Land owners. They tended to predominate in Northern Ireland, and were Protestant Presbyterians, rather than the local Catholics, hence the religious factionalism that also has become part of the Irish question.

Certainly Scots tend to have pale skin and an inclination to going red in the face either from anger or from drink, or from exposure to the sun while doing stoop labour. My understanding of the term "redneck" had to do with the latter.

Thanks, Toni,

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(NT) Referring to the Highland Clearances following 1745?
by Rob_Boyter / September 9, 2014 3:23 AM PDT
In reply to: Something I found
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My grandfather's heritage was one
by Steven Haninger / September 9, 2014 3:24 AM PDT
In reply to: Something I found

He called himself "Scotch-Irish" rather than Scots. Perhaps these folks were also called "Ulster Scots" but a lot were politically displaced persons. My grandfather was from a long line of Presbyterian ministers and was also one himself. He lived mostly in Virginia and the Carolinas depending on where his assignment was. I hear the Appalachians suited their appetite for a mountainous home and you're musical parallels agree with what I have found. There are many tunes and common themes found in Celtic music and American folk from the hills. The Appalachian dulcimer is an instrument that was quite popular on the mountain porches. It featured a diatonic scale and a drone string similar to the Celtic pipes. It was in the music and story telling that the history and culture of these people is fully contained. Their life sounds to have been hard but you won't hear them moan and complain about it in song.

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Error, Error, mistake, Danger, Will Robinson, Danger
by Rob_Boyter / September 9, 2014 3:21 AM PDT

The new "limited self government" began in 1848, not 1840. New currency in Dollars and pennies too at that time. Dollar = Thaler, the currency from the silver mines of Joachimsthal in the Austro-Hungarian Empire in the 15th or 16th century. Joachimsthal has a new name because it is in one part or another of the former Czechoslovakia.

From the Family Compact to limited self government in 11 years then to almost full self government in 19 years more.

There is a dock stretching out from New Brunswick and Maine coasts right on the border, the northern side of the dock is in New Brunswick, and the southern side is in Maine so boats from each country can tie up on either side. There are large Lobster holding-cages on either side of the end of the dock for each nation. The Canadian side has a simple trapdoor lid, the US side has chains and locks. An American tourist noticed this and asked a New Brunswick fisherman who had just finished dropping his catch into the cage why there was such a difference.
"Well ours are Canadian lobsters. They know where they belong."


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My buddies in Canada were surprised when asked.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / September 8, 2014 3:34 AM PDT

Where did the most immigrants to Canada come from?

Most rattled off countries that were in the top 10 but #1 eluded them all. I found that verrry interesting.

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And where in the heck did the
by Steven Haninger / September 8, 2014 4:37 AM PDT

Latinized name "Nova Scotia" come from?

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I asked. It was as I thought.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / September 8, 2014 4:43 AM PDT

"We come from France."

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The French name is also Latin derived
by Steven Haninger / September 8, 2014 6:16 AM PDT

and the word "Scotia" would have referred to what the Romans called the Irish people or lands which would include the Scots. I'm under the impression that the Roman Empire wasn't all that welcome in that area so why a Latin name would be chosen for that area alone seems odd.

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The French name for Nova Scotia was Acadie, or Acadia
by Rob_Boyter / September 8, 2014 8:25 AM PDT

the charming British loaded a lot of them on boats and took them to Louisiana where they became (A)'Cajuns.

It was Scottish settlers who followed the expulsion of Acadians circa 1760 that named Nova Scotia (New Scotland), just as the German soldiers who came north from the American revolution named New Brunswick after their home area in Germany. There are lots of German pockets around Canada.
There were large immigrations of Ukrainians in the 19th Century, and large immigrations of Scots and English then to.
The French fact is easily overlooked because those in Quebec don't consider themselves French and feel no attachment to France. They are Quebeckers, pure and simple, they just happen to speak French.
New Brunswick is about half Acadien French and half English speaking.
Northern Ontario has significant numbers of French Speakers, as does Manitoba.
Manitoba has a significant settlement of Icelanders around Gimli in the North.
Saskatchewan was settled by English and Ukrainians with an admixture of Scandinavians. Alberta was similarly settled. British Columbia was predominantly English and settled last in the 1860's and after. I'm told that British Columbia had quite a large population of first generation English who spoke with English accents right through to the early 1960's


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Oh, a largish Black population immigrated to communities
by Rob_Boyter / September 8, 2014 9:17 AM PDT

in the Sarnia, London, Stratford areas (across the Detroit River) and up into the Bruce Penninsula. Canada was the real end of the Underground railroad, and while not perfect was far more accepting than even northern US towns to the black settlers, at least according to the settlers themselves. Nova Scotia also received a substantial influx on US ships from New York Massachusetts and Connecticut from around 1800 on.

The Maritime Provinces. Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island tended to be more focussed on trade with the US by ship than on the east west trade with Upper and Lower Canada. One of the reasons for Cofederations was in order to keep the Maritime Provinces connected to Canada, rather than to see them slip into the grasp of the U. S.

Newfoundland pronounced NewfnLand didn't join Canada until 1949. Known as "the Rock" by its inhabitants, it is a hard-scrabble province which was barely hanging on when the fisheries were good, Currently their main source of revenue comes froma the drill platforms bringing in off-shore oil. It is, however, a wonderfully picturesque place with a remarkable Irish derived culture and has made a disproportionate impact on the Canadian entertainment industry. Nova Scotia is very beautiful as well, especially the Cabot Trail through Cape Breton (there're those French folks again). Nova Scotia's income used to be fishing and coal-mining. There was a terrible disaster in about 1956 in Springhill Nova Scotia which killed over a hundred miners, and which marked the beginning of the end of the mines.

Nova Scotia preserves the Scottish fiddling and folk song tradition and Quebec preserves the French traditions, and Newfoundland has the Irish traditions so Folk music is alive and well up here. Ontario has its own Scots, Irish and English traditions mixed with the French. Until the 1930's or later there was a tradition of Ghaidhlig speech in Nova Scotia as well. Apparently when Ramsay MacDonald the British Prime Minister of the early 30's visited he was greeted in Ghaidhlig but couldn't reply because he "had not the Gallic" which was a source of disappointment to some local speakers.

Fergus, Ontario has Highland Games, pipe competitions, athletics and dancing and the whole shebang.

(A shebang was a makeshift shelter common in Civil War Prison Camps at places like Andersonville.)


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Pretty interesting stuff here
by TONI H / September 8, 2014 4:41 AM PDT
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I didn't realize
by TONI H / September 8, 2014 4:43 AM PDT

although my father was French/Canadian and German/Dutch that there was such a large population of Germans in Canada.

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A great influx of Tory "Americans" displaced by the Revoluti
by Rob_Boyter / September 8, 2014 8:35 AM PDT
In reply to: I didn't realize

Revolution, and a large number of German soldiers from the same period, 1785 onward. Those people are referred to as United Empire Loyalists, and they all know who they are, though the time when it was painted on their mailboxes or property signs is long past.
The US lost at least 20% of its population at that time, and may have lost more. A great deal of the impetus to move was as a result of reprisals against neighbours, much of it unrelated to politics, simply to religious animosities toward Mennonites or Pennsylvania Dutch or other religious groups.
What used to be Berlin, Ontario was and is surrounded by Mennonites, and the Market is still famous for fresh vegetables. The name Berlin was changed to Kitchener in 1914.


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Thanks, Toni. I hadn't seen this article. It is very inter
by Rob_Boyter / September 8, 2014 9:53 AM PDT

interesting as you say, and does give a good potted history of Canadian Immigration.
I really liked the maps, but wish they'd had a guide to the main centres of Population.

Montreal was Canada's largest city and the financial heart right up to the middle 1960's when Quebec Nationalism and a certain amount of quasi-terrorism occurred and capital fled from Montreal to Toronto. There were very very few people hurt or killed (killed, perhaps 2 or 3) but Canadians being an almost unbelievably law abiding people, that was more than enough. I have to say that it was somewhat disorienting to come here and decide to attend A Midsummer Night's Dream performed out doors in High Park, only to find that we had to make our way back to the roads around High Park in the pitch dark, with everyone in high spirits and not the slightest hint of apprehension or any unpleasantness. I was damned nervuous. 10 years later we were taking friends from Chicago to another play in High Park, and it was they who were nervous as all get out and we who were saying, "Don't worry. Nothing ever happens here, you're perfectly safe." I know of no muggings or assaults or anything untoward during the plays in High park and we're now at 34 years.

Unfortunately the same can't be said of Caribana, where there seems to be a death every second year. Never the less, that's 1 death every second year which isn't awful, it's just not Toronto, if you know what I mean. Gay Pride up here draws people from the Northern US states because it is so safe and happy and pleasant.


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The answer, of course, is that the French were here before
by Rob_Boyter / September 9, 2014 1:34 AM PDT

the English, even the English in Plymouth Colony. They are therefore not readily thought of as ''immigrants''

Roanoke Colony was attempted beginning in 17 August, 1585, but failed primarily due to its dreadful location. Plymouth Colony had the benefit of religious zeal and a far better location less inclined to malaria and other diseases.


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For 2013 it looks like France is not in the top 10. Link....
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / September 9, 2014 1:57 AM PDT

Click on Canada and while I guessed many of the countries, the number 1 migration was one I didn't list. I know the China, India and Philippines ones as I lived in Canada for many years but #1? Knowing that I can guess why they are #1.
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I hope you don't take this the wrong way, but you don't hear
by Rob_Boyter / September 9, 2014 3:32 AM PDT

Canadians rioting and protesting and picketting and demonizing the people whom we recognize as essentially refugees from what has become a very dangerous, murderous society. As with everything, Canadians just get on with it, offer them ESL and some assistance while demanding they find work. No gangs (so far) just good citizens. This is less true of black Canadians. There are areas of Toronto which are gang turf, though you wouldn't recognize them as you drive through the neighbourhoods. They're not all that far from where I live, and they count Rob Ford as a good friend, or at least as a good customer.


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That's funny,
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / September 9, 2014 3:50 AM PDT

Imagine ESL for the folk from the country with the highest immigrants in 2013.

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The reason for all the fuss and the 150th Anniversary
by Rob_Boyter / September 9, 2014 12:34 AM PDT

celebration this year is that this is the 150th Anniversary of the Charlottetown Conference where the extensive proposal for self government was hammered out by the first 4 Provinces for submission to the British Parliament. Given the two month sea journey to Britain and another 2 months back, and the whole bureaucratic and legislative process accounts for the delay of 2 years and 10 months for the legislation to become law. Prince Edward Island, where the Conference was held didn't join Canada for a further 6 years, 3 years after Manitoba, and 2 years after British Columbia.
While still referred to as the Cradle of Confederation, it was the 7th province, not one of the first group. The next provinces to join were Saskatchewan and Alberta both in 1905, and finally Newfoundland in 1949.

There are three associated Territories which comprise the remainder of Canada. Nunavut which contains the Western shore of Hudson's Bay (north of Manitoba) and much of the northern shore and all the Islands to the north of Canada, The North-West Territories, and the Yukon or Yukon Territory. The Yukon was split off from the NWT in 1898 during the Yukon or Klondike Gold Rush. Nunavut was created out of the North West Territories in 1999. (As an example of how legislation has slowed since the 19th Century, Nunavut was proposed in 1993, but took 6 years to progress to fully enacted legislation. And that was during a period of reasonably productive legislative activity.)


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Thank you, Rob
by TONI H / September 9, 2014 4:30 AM PDT

this thread has actually turned into something fun and interesting.....it's been so long for something like that here in SE, that I didn't realize until this thread started that I've missed that very much.

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