The British Conquest of 1760
It is well known that the English victory on the Plains of Abraham in September 1759 placed the city of Québec under British rule, and that Montréal capitulated the following year. A temporary military regime was set up pending the outcome of negotiations between the great opposing European powers.
The Burning of Washington
In the final summer of the War of 1812, British presence in the Chesapeake region was strengthened in an effort to divert the American forces from the frontiers of Upper and Lower Canada.
The Canadian Peacekeeping Tradition
In 1956, in the crucible of the Suez Crisis, L.B. Pearson invented United Nations peacekeeping. The Canadian foreign minister did not do so alone, and peacekeeping as it evolved was not exactly what he had in mind.
The Charter of the Forest
The 1217 Charter of the Forest (Carta de Foresta) is a companion document to the Magna Carta of 1215.
The Conquest of New France
The Conquest (La Conquête) is a term used to describe the acquisition of Canada by Great Britain during the Seven Years’ War. It also refers to the resulting conditions experienced by Canada’s 60,000 to 70,000 French-speaking inhabitants and numerous Indigenous groups. French forces at Quebec City surrendered to British forces on 18 September 1759, a few days after the crucial Battle of the Plains of Abraham. French resistance ended in 1760 with the capitulation of Montreal. In 1763, the Treaty of Paris surrendered New France to Britain. The Royal Proclamation of 1763 introduced assimilative policies that ultimately failed. They were replaced by the provisions of the Quebec Act of 1774. Although it helped spark the American Revolutionary War (1775–83), the Act also granted Canadians enviable conditions that resulted in generations of relative stability.
The First Christmas Tree in North America
On December 25, 1943, the acrid smell of cordite hung over the rubble barricades of Ortona, Italy, where Canadians and Germans were engaged in grim hand-to-hand combat.
The First Telegraph in Canada
We are accustomed today to sending and receiving messages with little delay. Electronic mail and instant messaging provide almost instantaneous ways to send information over great distances.
The First Thanksgiving in North America
It has become common knowledge that the first Thanksgiving in North America was held by Sir Martin Frobisher and his crew in Nunavut in 1578. There are those — mainly Americans upset by the thought of having their holiday co-opted — who argue that it wasn't a “real” Thanksgiving. I would counter that Frobisher had reason to give thanks, and that giving thanks was an important aspect of Elizabethan society, so it would have been a natural thing for him and his men to do.
The Fraser River Gold Rush and the Founding of British Columbia
The year 1858 is the single most important year in British Columbia’s history. It was on 2 August of that year that an imperial act established the mainland colony of BC under the authority of Governor James Douglas. Beginning that spring, the Fraser River Gold Rush unleashed a chain of events that culminated a dozen years later in British Columbia joining the new Canadian Confederation (see British Columbia and Confederation). Without 1858, it is very possible there would have been no British Columbia, but rather an American state. Without 1858, Canada today might not extend from the Atlantic to the Pacific.
The Great Coalition of 1864
The politics of the Province of Canada in the early 1860s were marked by instability and deadlock. The Great Coalition of 1864 proved to be a turning point in Canadian history. It proved remarkably successful in breaking the logjam of central Canadian politics and in helping to create a new country. The coalition united Reformers and Conservatives in the cause of constitutional reform. It paved the way for the Charlottetown Conference and Confederation.
The Great Crash of 1929 in Canada
In late October of 1929, terror seized the stock exchanges of North America. Capitalism’s speculative party, with its galloping share prices and its celebrity millionaires, came to an abrupt stop. The Great Crash, it was called, and it was followed by the Great Depression.
The Great Depression in Canada
The Great Depression of the early 1930s was a worldwide social and economic shock. Few countries were affected as severely as Canada. Millions of Canadians were left unemployed, hungry and often homeless. The decade became known as the Dirty Thirties due to a crippling drought in the Prairies, as well as Canada’s dependence on raw material and farm exports. Widespread losses of jobs and savings transformed the country. The Depression triggered the birth of social welfare and the rise of populist political movements. It also led the government to take a more activist role in the economy.
The Great War Haunts Us Still
IT'S BEEN 90 YEARS now since the Guns of August began to fire, and the smoke has yet to clear from the world they made. The fault lines of modern history - from the quagmire in Iraq through Yugoslavia's implosion to the Cold War and beyond - all branch back to the cataclysm of 1914-1918.
The Great War in the Air
“The aeroplane is an invention of the devil, and will never play any part in such a serious business as the defence of the nation,” thundered Canada’s Minister of Militia and Defence, Sam Hughes, at the start of the First World War.
The Halifax Explosion and the CNIB
The 1917 Halifax Explosion is well-known as the biggest human-made explosion in the pre-atomic era, but it was also the largest mass-blinding in Canadian history and played a crucial role in the founding of the Canadian National Institute for the Blind (CNIB).
The Halifax Explosion of 1917
In Richmond Prison, at the end of Gottingen Street, Halifax, the warden's young son was drawn to a window by a spectacular display of fireworks. Too sick to go to school that day he had gone to work with his dad.
The Heroism of William Jackman
On 9 October 1867, in Spotted Island Harbour, Labrador, Captain William Jackman secured his vessel ahead of a vicious storm and went ashore to visit his old friend, John Holwell. Before the day ended, events transpired that earned Jackman a place in Newfoundland history — and legend.
The History of Canadian Women in Sport
For hundreds of years, very few sports were considered appropriate for women, whether for reasons of supposed physical frailty, or the alleged moral dangers of vigorous exercise. Increasingly, women have claimed their right to participate not only in what were deemed graceful and feminine sports, but also in the sweaty, rough-and-tumble games their brothers played.
The Indomitable Bluenose
As the schooners arrived home from the Grand Banks in 1920, word spread among the fishermen that the Americas Cup race off Sandy Hook, NY, had been postponed because of a mere "breeze." The fishermen had contempt for those effete "yachts," which huddled by the docks when the seas ran high.