The northern neighbor of the United States
; discovered by Jacques Cartier
(q. v.) in 1534.
Its name is suposed to have been derived from the Huron
, signifying a collection of cabins, such as Hochelaga
No settlements were made there until the explorations of Champlain
about threefourths of a century later.
He established a semi-military and semi-religious colony
, and from it Jesuit and other missions spread over the Lake
Then came the civil power of France
to lay the foundations of an empire, fighting one nation of Indians and making allies of another, and establishing a feudal system of government, the great land-holders being called Seigneurs
, who were compelled to cede the lands granted to them, when demanded by settlers, on fixed conditions.
They were not absolute proprietors of the soil, but had certain valuable privileges, coupled with prescribed duties, such as building mills, etc. David Kertk
, or Kirk
, a Huguenot refugee, received a royal commission from King Charles I. to seize the French
forts in Acadia
(q. v.), and on the river St. Lawrence
With a dozen ships he overcame the small French force at Port Royal
, and took possession of Acadia
Later in the summer he entered the St. Lawrence
, burned the hamlet of Tadousac, at the mouth of the Saguenay, and sent a summons for the surrender of Quebec
It was refused, and Kirk
resolved to starve out the garrison.
He cruised in the Gulf of St. Lawrence
, and captured the transports conveying winter provisions for Quebec
The sufferings there were intense, but they endured them until August the next year, when, English ships-of-war, under a brother of Admiral Kirk
, appearing before Quebec
, instead of the expected supply-ships, the place was surrendered, and the inhabitants, not more than 100 in all, were saved from starvation.
By a treaty, Canada
was restored to the French
In the early history of the colony, the governors, in connection with the intendant, held the military and civil administration in their hands.
Jesuit and other priests became conspicuous in the public service.
Finally, when a bishop was appointed for Quebec
, violent dissensions occurred between the civil and ecclesiastical authorities.
Until the treaty of Utrecht
included all of present British America
, and more.
At that time Hudson Bay
and vicinity was restored to England
by Louis XIV. Newfoundland
) were ceded to the English
, and all right to the Iroquois
country (New York) was renounced, reserving to France
only the valleys of the St. Lawrence
and the Mississippi
The easy conquest of Louisburg
revived a hope that Canada
might be conquered.
proposed to the ministers to have the task performed by a colonial army alone.
They would not comply, for the colonists, thus perceiving their own strength, might claim Canada
by right of conquest, and become too independent; so they authorized an expedition for the purpose after the old plan of attacking that province by land and sea. An English fleet was prepared to go against Quebec
; a land force, composed of troops from Connecticut
, New York, and colonies farther south, gathered at Albany
, to march against Montreal
. Governor Clinton
assumed the chief command of the land expedition.
His unpopularity thwarted his plans.
The corporation of Albany
refused to furnish quarters for his troops, and his drafts on the British
treasury could not purchase provisions.
and Rhode Island
had raised nearly 4,000 troops, and were waiting for an English squadron.
Instead of a British armament, a French fleet of forty war vessels, with 3.000 veteran troops was coming over the sea. New England
was greatly alarmed.
It was D'Anville's armament, and it was dispersed by storms.
Ten thousand troops gathered at Boston
for its defence; the fort on Castle Island
was made very strong.
and the land expedition against Montreal
fell, in the autumn of 1759, the French
, and were not dismayed.
In the spring of 1760, Vaudreuil
, the governor-general
, sent M. Levi
, the successor of Montcalm
, to recover Quebec
He descended the St. Lawrence
with six frigates and a powerful land force.
under General Murray
, marched out of Quebec
, and met him at Sillery
, 3 miles above the city; and there was fought (April 4) one of the most sanguinary battles of the war. Murray
He lost about 1,000 men, and all his artillery, but succeeded in retreating to the city with the remainder of his army.
Levi laid siege to Quebec
, and Murray
's condition was becoming critical, when an English squadron appeared (May 9) with reinforcements and provisions.
Supposing it to be the whole British fleet, Levi
raised the siege (May 10), and fled to Montreal
, after losing most of his shipping.
Now came the final struggle.
Three armies were soon in motion towards Montreal
, where Vaudreuil
had gathered all his forces.
Amherst, with 10,000 English and provincial troops, and 1,000 Indians of the Six Nations, led by Johnson
, embarked at Oswego
, went down Lake Ontario
and the St. Lawrence
, where he met Murray
(Sept. 6), who had come up from Quebec
with 4,000 men. The next day, Colonel Haviland
arrived with 3,000 troops from Crown Point
, having taken possession of Isle aux Noix on the way. Resistance to such a crushing force would have been in vain, and, on Sept. 8, 1760, Vaudreuil
signed a capitulation surrendering Montreal
and all French posts in Canada
and on the border of the Lakes
to the English
was made military governor of Montreal
, and General Murray
, with 4,000 men, garrisoned Quebec
The conquest of Canada
was now completed, and by the Treaty
Isle aux Noix, in the Sorel|
in 1763, a greater portion of the French
dominions in America
fell into the possession of the British
When news of the surrender of Ticonderoga
(q. v.) reached Governor Carleton
, of Canada
, he issued a proclamation (June 9, 1775) in which he declared the captors to be a band of rebellious traitors; established martial law; summoned the French
peasantry to serve under the old colonial nobility; and instigated the Indian
tribes to take up the hatchet against the people of New York and New England
This proclamation neutralized the effects of the address of Congress to the Canadians.
The Quebec Act had soothed the French
nobility .and Roman Catholic
The English residents were offended by it, and these, with the Canadian
peasantry, were disposed to take sides with the Americans
They denied the right of the French
nobility, as magistrates, or the seigneurs, to command their military services.
They welcomed invasion, but had not the courage to join the invaders.
At the same time, the French
peasantry did not obey the order of the Roman Catholic
bishop, which was sent to the several parishes, and read by the local clergy, to come out in defence of the British
It was known that the bishop was a stipendiary of the crown.
There was a decided war spirit visible in the second Continental Congress, yet it was cautious and prudent.
Immediately after the seizure of Ticonderoga
and Crown Point
(May 10-12, 1775), the Congress
was urged to authorize the invasion and seizure of Canada
That body hoped to gain a greater victory by making the Canadians their friends and allies.
To this end they sent a loving address to them, and resolved, on June 1, “that no expedition or incursion ought to be undertaken or made by any colony or body of colonists against or into Canada
The Provincial Congress of New York had expressly disclaimed any intention to make war on Canada
's proclamation (June 10) that all Americans
in arms were rebels and traitors, and especially the battle of Bunker
, made a radical change in the
feelings of the people and in Congress.
It was also ascertained that Governor Carleton
had received a commission to muster and arm the people of the province, and to march them into any province in America
to arrest and put to death, or spare, “rebels” and other offenders.
Here was a menace that could not go unheeded.
Cols. Ethan Allen
, Benedict Arnold
, and others renewed their efforts to induce the Congress
to send an expedition into Canada
The latter perceived the importance of securing Canada
either by alliance or by conquest.
At length the Congress
prepared for an invasion of Canada
Maj.-Gen. Philip Schuyler
had been appointed to the command of the Northern Department, which included the whole province of New York.
Gen. Richard Montgomery
was his chief lieutenant.
The regiments raised by the province of New York were put in motion, and General Wooster
, with Connecticut
troops, who were stationed at Harlem
, was ordered to Albany
were joined by “Green Mountain
sent into Canada
an address to the inhabitants, in the French
language, informing them that “the only views of Congress were to restore to them those rights which every subject of the British
empire, of whatever religious sentiments he may be, is entitled to” ; and that, in the execution of these trusts, he had received the most positive orders to “cherish every Canadian
, and every friend to the cause of liberty, and sacredly to guard their property.”
It was now too late.
Had the Congress
listened to Allen
at the middle of May, and moved upon Canada
, its conquest would have been easy, for there were very few troops there.
When, near the close of August, an expedition against Canada
, under Schuyler
, was ready to move, preparations had been made to thwart it. The clergy and seigneurs of Canada
, satisfied with the Quebec Act
, were disposed to stand by the British
The invading army first occupied Isle aux Noix, in the Sorel River; but the expedition made little advance beyond until November. Colonel Allen
had attempted to take Montreal
, without orders, and was made a prisoner and sent to England
A detachment of Schuyler
's army captured Fort Chambly, 12 miles from St. Johns
, on the Sorel
(Nov. 3), and, on the same day, the fort at the latter, which Montgomery
had besieged for some time, cut off from supplies, also surrendered.
fell before the patriots on the 13th, and Montgomery
, leaving a garrison at both places, prepared to move on Quebec
Meanwhile Colonel Arnold
had led an expedition by way of the Kennebec
and Chaudiere rivers
, through a terrible wilderness, to the banks of the St. Lawrence
(Nov. 9) opposite Quebec
He crossed the river, ascended to the Plains of Abraham
(Nov. 13), and, at the head of only 750 half-naked men—with not more than 400 muskets—demanded the surrender of the city.
Intelligence of an intended sortie caused Arnold
to move 20 miles farther up the river, where he was soon joined by Montgomery
The combined forces returned to Quebec
, and began a siege.
At the close of the year (1775), in an attempt to take the city by storm, the invaders were repulsed, and Montgomery
took the command, and was relieved by General Wooster
, in April (1776). A month later, General Thomas
took command, and, hearing of the approach of a large armament, land and naval, to Quebec
, he retreated up the river.
Driven from one post to another, the Americans
were finally expelled from Canada
, the wretched remnant of the army, reduced by disease, arriving at Crown Point
in June, 1776.
The American Board of War, General Gates
president, arranged a plan, late in 1777, for a winter campaign against Canada
, and appointed Lafayette
to the command.
was cordially received at Albany
by General Schuyler
, then out of the military service.
, who had been appointed inspector-general of the army, was there before him. Lafayette
was utterly disappointed and disgusted by the lack of preparation and the delusive statements of Gates
“I do not believe,” he wrote to Washington
, “I can find 1,200 men fit for duty —and the quarter part of these are naked—even for a summer campaign.”
soon found the whole affair to be only a trick of Gates
to detach him from Washington
had, in a long letter to Congress (Nov. 4,
1777), recommended a winter campaign against Canada
, but it was passed unnoticed by the Congress
, and Gates
appropriated the thoughts as his own in forming the plan, on paper, which he never meant to carry out.
Another campaign for liberating Canada
from British rule was conceived late
, in the name of Louis XVI., had summoned the Canadians to throw off British rule.
exhorted (December) the barbarians of Canada
to look upon the English
as their enemies.
The Congress became inflamed with zeal for the projected measure, formed a plan, without consulting a single military officer, for the “emancipation of Canada
,” in co-operation with an army from France
One American detachment from Pittsburg
was to capture Detroit
; another from Wyoming
was to seize Niagara
; a third from the Mohawk Valley
was to capture Oswego
; a fourth from New England
was to enter Montreal
by way of the St. Francis
; a fifth to guard the approaches from Quebec
; while to France
was assigned the task of reducing Halifax
offered to use his influence at the French Court in furtherance of this grand scheme; but the cooler judgment and strong common-sense of Washington
interposed the objection that the part which the United States
had to perform in the scheme was far beyond its resources.
It was abandoned, as was another scheme for a like result, early in the year.
The first important military movement after the declaration of war in 1812 was an attempt to conquer Canada
by an invasion of its western border on the Detroit River
It then consisted of two provinces —Lower Canada
, with a population of 300,000, mostly of French origin, and Upper Canada
, with a population of 100,000, composed largely of American loyalists and their descendants.
The regular military force in both provinces did not exceed 2,000 men, scattered over a space of 1,200 miles from Quebec
to the foot of Lake Superior
. Sir George Prevost
was then governor-general, with his residence at Montreal
To enter the province from the States, a water-barrier had to be crossed, while the American
frontier was destitute of roads, infected with summer fevers, and sparsely settled.
, a soldier of the Revolution, then governor of Michigan Territory
, was consulted about an invasion of Canada
, while on a visit at Washington
He insisted that before such an enterprise should be undertaken a naval control of Lake Erie
should be acquired, and not less than 3,000 troops should be provided for the invasion.
He accepted the commission of brigadier-general with the special object in view of protecting his territory from the Indian
allies of the British
, yet, by orders of the government, he prepared to invade Canada
, of Ohio
, called for troops to assemble at Dayton
, and volunteers flocked thither in considerable numbers.
There General Hull
took command of them (May 25, 1812), and they started off in good spirits for their march through the wilderness.
It was a perilous and most fatiguing journey.
On the broad morasses of the summit lands of Ohio
received a despatch from the War Department urging him to press on speedily to Detroit
, and there await further orders.
When he reached the navigable waters of the Maumee
, his beasts of burden were
so worn down by fatigue that he despatched for Detroit
, in a schooner, his own baggage and that of most of his officers; also all of his hospital stores, intrenching tools, and a trunk containing, his most valuable military papers.
The wives of three of his officers, with thirty soldiers to protect the schooner, also embarked in her. In a smaller vessel the invalids of the army were conveyed.
Both vessels arrived at the site of Toledo
on the evening of July 1.
The next day, when near Frenchtown
received a note from the postmaster at Cleveland
announcing the declaration of war. It was the first intimation he had received of that important event.
In fact, the British
at Fort Malden (now Amherstburg
) heard of the declaration before Hull
did, and captured his schooner, with all its precious freight.
The commander at Malden
had been informed of it, by express, as early as June 30—two days before it reached Hull
The latter pressed forward, and encamped near Detroit
on July 5.
were then casting up intrenchments at Sandwich
on the opposite side of the Detroit River
awaited further orders from his government.
His troops, impatient to invade Canada
, had evinced a mutinous spirit, when he received orders to “commence operations immediately,” and, if possible, take possession of Fort Malden.
At dawn on the morning of July 12, the greater part of his troops had crossed the Detroit River
, and were on Canadian
issued a proclamation to the Canadians, assuring them of protection in case they remained quiet.
Many of the Canadian
militia deserted the British
advanced towards Malden
(July 13). After a successful encounter with British and Indians he fell back to Sandwich
, without attacking Malden
His troops were disappointed and mutinous.
Then information came of the capture of MacKINAWinaw
(q. v.) by the British
News also came that General Proctor
, of the British
army, had arrived at Malden
This was followed by an intercepted despatch from the northwest announcing that 1.200 white men and several hundred Indians were coming down to assist in the defence of Canada
.. General Brock
was approaching from the east, with a force gathered on his way. These events, and other causes, impelled Hull
to recross the river to Detroit
with his army, and take shelter in the fort there (Aug. 8, 1812). The British
congregated in force at Sandwich
, and from that point opened a cannonade upon the fort at Detroit
On Sunday morning, the 16th, the British
crossed the river to a point below Detroit
, and moved upon the fort.
Very little effort was made to defend it, and, on that day, Hull
surrendered the fort, army, and Territory of Michigan
into the hands of the British
; Hull, William.
On Oct. 17, 1813, General Harrison
, of the United States army, and Commodore Perry
, commander of the fleet on Lake Erie
, issued a proclamation, stating that, by the combined operations of the land and naval forces of the United States
, British power had been destroyed within the upper districts of Canada
, which was in quiet possession of United States troops.
They therefore proclaimed that the rights and privileges of the inhabitants and the laws and customs of the country, which were in force before the arrival of the conquerors, should continue to prevail, and that all magistrates and other civil officers might resume their functions, after taking an oath of fidelity to the United States government so long as the troops should remain in possession of the country.
At the opening of the third year of the second war for independence, a favorite project with the United States government was the conquest of Canada
The principal military forces in Upper Canada
were under Lieutenant-General Drummond
When the Army of the North
, commanded by Major-General Brown
, reached the Niagara
's headquarters were at Burlington Heights
, at the western end of Lake Ontario
. General Riall
was on the Niagara River
, at Fort George
; but when lie heard of the arrival of the Americans
, under General Scott
, he advanced to Chippewa
and established a fortified camp.
At the close of June, General Brown
arrived at Buffalo
, and assumed chief command, and, believing his army to be strong enough, he proceeded to invade Canada
His army consisted of two
brigades, commanded respectively by Generals Scott
, to each of which was attached a train of artillery, commanded by Capt. N. Towson
and Maj. J. Hindman
He had also a small corps of cavalry, under Capt. S. D. Harris
These regulars were well disciplined and in high spirits.
There were also volunteers from Pennsylvania
and New York, 100 of them mounted, and nearly 600 Seneca Indians
—almost the entire military force of the Six Nations remaining in the United States
These had been stirred to action by the venerable Red Jacket
, the great Seneca
The volunteers and Indians were under the chief command of Gen. Peter B. Porter
, then quartermastergeneral of the New York militia. Major McRee
, of North Carolina
, was chief-engineer, assisted by Maj. E. D. Wood
On the Canada
shore, nearly opposite Buffalo
, stood Fort Erie
, then garrisoned by 170 men, under the command of Major Buck
On July 1 Brown
received orders to cross the Niagara
, capture Fort Erie
, march on Chippewa
, menace Fort George
, and, if he could have the co-operation of Chauncey
's fleet, to seize and fortify Burlington Heights
arranged for General Scott
and his brigade to cross on boats and land a mile below the fort, while Ripley
, with his brigade, should be landed a mile above it. This accomplished, the boats were to return and carry the remainder of the army, with its ordnance and stores, to the Canada
The order for this movement was given on July 2.
It was promptly obeyed by Scott
, and tardily by Ripley
, on the 3d.
had pressed forward to invest the fort, he found Ripley
had not crossed, and no time was lost in crossing the ordnance and selecting positions for batteries.
These preparations alarmed the garrison, and the fort, which was in a weak condition, was surrendered.
Nearly 200 men, including officers, became prisoners of war, and were sent across the river.
By an act of the Imperial Parliament, in 1791, Canada
was divided into two provinces, Upper Canada
and Lower Canada
, and each had a parliament or legislature of its own. An imperial act was passed in 1840 to unite the two provinces under one administration and one legislature.
Antecedent political struggles had taken place, which culminated in open insurrection in 1837-38.
A movement for a separation of the Canadas from the crown of Great Britain
, and their political independence, was begun simultaneously in Upper and Lower Canada
In the former province, the most conspicuous leader was William Lyon McKenzie
, a Scotchman, a journalist of rare ability and a great political agitator; in the lower province, the chief leader was Joseph Papineau
, a large land-owner, and a very influential man among the French
Both leaders were republican in sentiment.
The movements of the revolutionary party were well planned, but local jealousies prevented unity of action, and the effort failed.
It was esteemed highly patriotic, and elicited the warmest sympathy of the American
people, especially of those of the Northern States
Banded companies and individuals joined the “rebels,” as they were called by the British
government, and “patriots” by their friends; and so general became the active sympathy on the northern frontier, that peaceful relations between the United States
and Great Britain
President Van Buren
issued a proclamation, calling upon all persons engaged in the schemes of invasion of the Canadian territory
to abandon the design, and warning them to beware of the penalties that must assuredly follow such infringement of international laws.
In December, 1837, a party of sympathizing Americans
took possession of Navy Island
, belonging to Canada
, in the Niagara River
, about 2 miles above the falls.
They mustered about 700 men, well provisioned, and provided with twenty pieces of cannon.
They had a small steamboat named the Caroline
to ply between the island and Schlosser
, on the American
On a dark night a party of Canadian
royalists crossed the river, cut the Caroline
loose from her moorings, and set her on fire.
She went down the current and over the great cataract in full blaze.
It is supposed some persons were on board of her. Gen. Winfield Scott
was finally sent to the northern frontier to preserve order, and was assisted by a proclamation by the governor of New York.
associations, known as “Hunters' Lodges,” continued quite active for some time.
Against the members of these lodges, President Tyler
issued an admonitory proclamation, which prevented further aggressive movements.
For four years this ominous cloud hung upon our horizon.
It disappeared in 1842, when the leaders of the movement were either dead or in exile.
In 1841 Upper and Lower Canada
were united for purposes of government, the system professedly modified after that of Great Britain
In 1857 Ottawa
was selected as the permanent seat of government for Canada
, and costly public buildings were erected there.
By act of the Imperial Parliament, which received the royal assent March 28, 1867, the provinces of Upper and Lower Canada
, New Brunswick, and Nova Scotia
were connected and made one nation, under the general title of “The Dominion.”
was named “Ontario
,” and Lower Canada
Provision was made for the future admission of Prince Edward Island
, the Hudson Bay Territory
, British Columbia
, and Newfoundland
, with its dependency, Labrador
In the new government the executive authority is vested in the Queen
, and her representative in the Dominion is the acting governor-general
, who is advised and aided by a privy council of fourteen members, constituting the ministry, who must be sustained by a Parliamentary majority.
There is a Parliament composed of two chambers, the Senate and the House of Commons.
According to the census of 1891 the population of the Dominion, by provinces, was as follows:
|Prince Edward Island||109,078|
Official statistics for the fiscal year ending June 30. 1S99, contained the following general items: Imports of merchandise, $162,764,308; exports, $158,896,905, of which $137,360,792 represented Canadian
productions; gross debt, $345,160,903; assets, $78,886,364; net debt, $266,274,539; revenue, $46,741,250; expenditure, $41,903,501; mileage of railways in operation, 17,250; capital of chartered banks, $63,674,085; assets, $408,936,411; liabilities, $316,330,478; and number of post-office savings-banks, 838, with depositors, 142,141, and total balances, $34,771,605. See Anglo-American commission.